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Conflicts Of Conscience Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
March 14, 2022 1:00 am

Conflicts Of Conscience Part 1

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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March 14, 2022 1:00 am

Christians in America are rapidly becoming like Daniel and his friends in Babylon: out of sync with their pagan environment. How do we reconcile what we believe with what we have to do to live in such a culture? In this message, we’ll identify three different ways we can respond to a pagan culture. Before we look at how Daniel stood against the culture, let’s find out how he participated in the culture. 

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Marie Flores looking to Jesus phone number for Christians in America are rapidly becoming like Daniel and his friends in Babylon out of sync with their pagan environment, how do we reconcile what we believe with what we have to do to live in such a culture today. The answers from the Moody Church in Chicago this morning with Dr. Erwin Sir, whose clear teaching sauce make it across the finish line.

Today we continue a series on the church in Babylon unleashing the power of the spirit filled witness estimates are. I see you're talking to us today from Daniel about resolving conflicts of conscience, you know, Dave. Some of the issues that we face today are unique, but many of them have been faced before in history and the reason that Daniel is so important and so interesting is that he and his friends had to decide what they were going to do when asked to serve a pagan king. There were some things that they could go along with.

There were other things that obviously they could not do one of my heart's desires is to try to help people think through the kinds of things we can accept in our culture and those things that we must reject. I've written a book entitled the church in Babylon. Now I have to emphasize that many of the themes in this book are not in the sermon series. Issues such as immigration false doctrines within the evangelical church but at the same time my desire always is the same. What does it look like for us to represent Christ. Well in a pagan culture.

If you want to connect with us for a gift of any amount.

This book can be yours. You can go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 out the end of this message. I'm going to be giving you this contact info again. You stay tuned because I think you'll be blessed and challenged. Today's topic is conflicts of conscience. We've all experienced it.

I'm sure there are several sources where these conflict come from. First of all, they may come from the state they may come from laws that are enacted. For example, here's a question.

Should an organization run on Christian principles have to buy into a national healthcare program whereby if they do that that some of the money that they will be spending will go to abortion whether or not it is through drugs or the procedure. When the conviction of those who believe the Bible is that life begins at conception is that a violation of religious conscience. Or I think for example of Elaine photography over there in in New Mexico and that she and her studio refused to take pictures in a same-sex wedding and as many of you know they ran afoul of the law and all of those things that happened the fines that were levied etc. in the laws that have been an act that it's a conflict of conscience that sometimes comes to us because of society and because of society's laws, and then at times there are conflicts of conscience because of where we find ourselves in the workforce. I wish I had time to talk to many of you are in the professional world. I'm sure that you have conflicts of conscience on a regular basis. Sometimes you may be asked to participate in something that you know right well is dishonest. How do you handle a conflict of conscience and then we can speak personally can't wait just in the last couple of weeks, I received an email and a letter from two mothers separate mothers.

One was asking whether or not she should go to the wedding of her son who is marrying a woman who is part of a cult and that this woman's father has a great emphasis and authority in this cult second was from a same-sex wedding where the family was going through the agony she said my daughter is marrying her same-sex partner and part of my family thinks that we should go because if not, we lose our relationship with the couple as she said but I don't feel as if I should a conflict of conscience will that's our topic today and you know when you think of the society at large and by the way, I hope that in this message.

I don't scare up more rabbits than I'm able to shoot because these things. These things can get very complicated but I believe were going to be helped on our journey. There are three different ways that we can respond to the culture when it becomes pagan. One way is of course to oppose the culture continually to stand against everything that we see happening and often times to do so with anger and we can become angry evangelicals.

Angry because our freedoms are being taken away. Angry because of this angry because of that, and so we are close to culture.

There's another way that we can respond and that is to assimilate simply go with the stream and not have an argument about it and say that somebody has to live.

We all have to live in so the culture is pushing us in one direction and then love would dictate we go along with the culture because after all were to love everybody and to oppose anything seems to be bad business. There is 1/3 view. The third view is to take into account culture to go along with culture, not in anger but as far as you possibly can and then draw the line and say this far, but no further. And so you draw the line but you go into the culture you take as much of the culture with you. As you can because you want to minister to the culture but at the same time you do have convictions and you know where that line is drawn. The passage of Scripture that I have before me and I hope it's before you as well is Daniel chapter 1 Daniel chapter 1. Now let's get the context and I hope that you were here for the message. Last time because last time we pointed out that God had led the exiles into Babylon. So now they no longer had security, they no longer had oneness of outlook and culture and religion. Suddenly they were without a Temple, and they were in the middle of a pagan culture. And God said to them, be sure to build houses, plant vineyards blessed the city blessed the city and that you will be blessed in turn seek the shalom of the city. Be involved in the culture and now in Daniel chapter 1 because Daniel was one of the exiles we finally see for ourselves what it looks like for those who follow God in a pagan culture. I'm going to pick it up. Actually in verse 73, and that the reason is because verses one and to just give the background I gave you how that there were these exiles in Babylon 600 miles from Jerusalem. It says then the king commanded Ashkenaz that was his Chief of Staff to bring some of the people of Israel. Both of the royal family and of the nobility use without blemish of good appearance, skillful in all wisdom endowed with knowledge, understanding of learning and competent to stand in the king's palace and the command was to teach them the literature and language of the Chaldeans, the king assigned them a daily portion of the food that the king agent of the wind that he drank they were to be educated for three years and at the end of that time to stand before the king. Among these were Daniel Hannah Anaya, Michelle Azariah, of the tribe of Judah just to the end of her six so far. Notice what the king of Babel and that he wasn't a nice king. Remember were talking about the man who would take babies whose soldiers took babies and threw them against the rocks actually is not a very nice man, cruel, but he sees that the Jews have among them the units that are very brilliant and wise and he wants to use them in his court so he has a program of forest assimilation before we look at how Daniel stood against the culture let's look at all of the ways in which he participated in the culture. In fact, those ways might actually surprises the aspects in which he went along with the culture.

First of all, in education, I just ranted a moment ago they were to be educated for three years in the literature about: they have to learn the Babylonian language Akkadian, what an experience that would be and so they be inundated with all kinds of pagan ideas regarding sexuality regarding the meaning of life.

All of the wisdom, the mythology of Babel, and they would have to be educated almost brainwashed with this kind of education for three years. They accepted that because they believe that they could endure that kind of an education without losing their faith and I believe that the reason that they thought that they could do that and didn't do it without losing their faith is because of the reasons all of that they had to maintain their faith.

This is a parenthesis but I am convinced that the reason that so many teenagers and teenagers you listen at this point in college student. The reason that so many lose their faith in university or college is not because of the intellectual arguments. It's because of the moral issues the moral pressure the peer pressure the falling into sexuality and having guilt and not knowing how to deal with it.

This past week I was in a number of places. Actually, it's a good thing that I'm young because I can still get around.

But one place I was actually was in New Brunswick, Canada of all things for a day church for a pastors conference and Rebecca spoke to the women and so at lunch. There was a young woman who works with inter-varsity so I asked whether or not she agreed with my assessment and she said unquestionably young people lose their resolve the moral pressure is so strong that pretty soon if they fall morally.

Then they find all kinds of intellectual reasons why they are abandoning Christianity is not to say that the intellectual aspect isn't important, but they go together. These use four of them.

God bless them, said we can be in the educational institution of Babel and maintain our faith. Secondly, is not just that but they accepted careers in the government they were going to stand before the king. This wicked king who had done so much damage so much damage to their culture, whose armies destroyed Jerusalem. On his command, and they were now going to stand before him and give him wisdom and help them be successful. They were willing to accept that that they would stand before the king in his presence and help them rule. Third, and this is again remarkable accepted the name change. Now you'll notice that the Bible says there and now I am in verse seven he gave them names Daniel and that the name Daniel by the way, means that God is my judge, he changed his name to Bell Chavez or Hannah Anaya. He called Shadrach Michelle. He called me shack Azariah, he called Bendigo so they have pagan names every one of these names I won't take time to tell you the meaning of each every one of these names that the Jewish boys had signified in some way God God's favor. Now they're receiving Babylonian names and they said we can in word that because were to bless the culture and seek the shalom of our city. Well, there were some aspects of the culture that they would not accept. You'll notice here in verse eight, but Daniel resolve. Wow, what a fantastic statement. The old King James that I memorized years ago, I think, is that Daniel purposed in his heart this morning. I was praying with one of our interns.

He came up to the study to pray with me and he said are you going to emphasize verse eight he said that verse has Here in the city of Chicago living in this culture. Young people take your Bibles and I don't know if you can do this on cell phones and tablets and all the other things that people bring to church nowadays and call the Bible but underlying that phrase.

The Bible says that they purposed to Daniel purposed he resolved what was his resolve, will the place that he drew the line interestingly had to do with the food he would not eat the king's food now.

Honestly, we don't know exactly why he had such an issue with the king's food almost certainly it was not kosher.

It probably was offered onto idols.

Perhaps it signified the good life in the kind of life that he didn't want to be identified with, for whatever reason, Daniel said I draw the line here and so you spoke to the Chief of Staff and said them. I want to drink the eat this food and I don't want to drink the king's wine and them. He said I'm going to give you an alternate possibility, the intention of the king is that we might be healthy fetus vegetables for 10 days and if we are not as healthy as all those who are eating the king's food, then you'll have a point. And so the rest of the story is that the Chief of Staff agreed with the test and he said all right I'll test you all give you vegetables and then we'll see who's the best at the end of 10 days and at the end of 10 days before Jewish boys. Their faces glowed and they were much more healthy than those who ate the king's food so Daniel said that's where I draw the line by the way, that is the only place that Daniel drew the line in chapter 6, and I wish I had time to speak on this whole only referred to it because you know the story in chapter 6 the king issues an edict because some people think him and said how are we going to corner Daniel and that people said to the king went to issue an edict that says that whoever does not bow down when the music plays. Whoever does not bow down has to be thrown in the line stand. This is now a different king. By the way, and Daniel is an advisor to him as well. The king's name is Darius and the drives goes along with it.

Not understanding the implication Daniel prays with his window open to Jerusalem three times a day.

He kneels and prays and he won't bow down to the image. I'll be sure to listen to the next message in this series because I'm going to talk about another image that they were to bow down to and the implications of statism.

Specifically, my topic next time is going to be when the state becomes God well in this case the state game God bow down and Daniel won't and he was thrown in the lion's den. Now we all know that an angel came and close the mouths of the line. We all know that story and it's a true story, but critically did Daniel know that that was going to happen when he was thrown into the lion's den. Absolutely not.

He expected to be torn to bits and I don't Inc. that that would be an ideal way to die to be torn to bits by a hungry, angry lion, but Daniel says I draw the line there. I draw the line there. I will not worship the pagan God and I will not stop my devotions and he wasn't doing that on company time. This was in his home. The window was open and they said you have to bow down. He says I refuse to.

I continued to pray because he resolved in his heart, there are certain things in a pagan society that you cannot do and there. Daniel stood now the question is what does all this mean to us how do we resolve our own conflicts of conscience.

Well I'm going to give you a few principles that I hope will help you stimulate your pure mind and make you think and give you some context. But I hope will help all of us as we try to struggle with this issue of conscience.

Your Bibles are open your iPad is to Daniel chapter 1. Your telephone should be turned off. Notice the little phrase in the Scriptures, God gave God gave verse to the Lord gave the Jehoiada Kim king of Judah into Nebuchadnezzar's hand, the Lord brought them there to babble and it was a judgment to be sure, but God brought them there. You'll notice it says now in verse nine verse nine and the Lord gave Daniel favor, and then in verse 17 and as for these for use. God gave them learning and wisdom, and they had understanding of all visions and dreams. Notice God's sovereignty internationally.

He's the God of the nations notice God's sovereignty. Personally God showed favor to Daniel and helped him in his predicament. Notice God's sovereignty, situational lay when they stood before the king and they needed the wisdom that they had sought and as God before when that happened. Lo and behold, God gave them what they needed.

The moment that they needed it. God's sovereignty, my dear Christian friend today you are where you are because of God's sovereignty, he led you to that job, he is there with you in your predicament.

He knows the longitude and the latitude of your boat as you sail along the oceans of life. He knows the strength of every board. He knows the, the trajectory of the wind and its speed. God is with you and what we must do is to somehow not divorce God from our predicament, which is a serious predicament in America, but we should not divorce God from that. But we should see that God has led us to where we are, possibly because of our own judgment.

The point is, he is with us.

There, God is not absence from his people and it's times like this, we have to remind ourselves of the promises of Scripture.

I shall never leave the nor for safety. Hebrews chapter 13 I think it is verse five has actually five negatives in the verse in Greek if I could just have roughly translated, I will know not leave you, I will known never sake you five times God says never, never, never, never, never, he is with us no matter the trial that we are going through. God is there, thank you for those hangman's God is there with us. Rejoice in his sovereignty.

We are where we are by a divine will, even if were here because of our disobedience that that's exactly what the text teaches here. God was with them, though they were there because of their disobedience. Second, we must rely on the wisdom of God the wisdom of God. Nothing for a moment.

These four boys and were gonna be talking about three of them in the next message Daniel was exempt from that experience.

There may be reasons for that is prominence. That's the next message when I speak about the state becoming God, but please know that God gave them the wisdom to know how to navigate this issue of conscience will my friend, this is Pastor Luther I read recently that 3/5 Americans say that they are overstressed, overstressed because of the pandemic because of inflation.

Political wrangling and the list could go on in the midst of this, that's why running to win exists to help us to navigate this kind of a culture and make it successfully all the way to the finish line. I've written a book entitled the church in babble now. This book contains much information that is not in the sermon series.

It deals with issues such as false gospels within the evangelical church.

What is it like to take the cross into the world. Where do we draw the line between what we can do in our culture and what we should not these kinds of issues for a gift of any amount. This book can be yours and I'm going to give you time to find a pencil so you can write this down.

You can go to RT W will be giving you that info again or if you prefer you can call us at 1-888-218-9337 let me thank you in advance for helping us because together we are making a difference. Go to RT W or call us at 1-888-218-9337 you can write to us running to win 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago.

I 60614 when the government says one thing in the Bible says the opposite. What do we do next time I'm running to win more on conflicts of conscience help for men handle this in ancient Babylon. Thanks for listening for Dr. Erwin look certain this is Dave Callister running to win is sponsored the Moody church

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