Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
Select a thought to read by choosing a collection, the month, and then the day:
From conversations with Preacher Clark in the late 1970’s
“If you have a doubt about it, don’t do it.” That was the advice of Preacher Clark to his congregation. “Do only what you know is right.”
The road that leads to eternal life is the road of no condemnation. A heart without condemnation can more easily hear and be led by the Lord. Even if what you are doing is not perfect in God’s sight, if you think it is, then at least your heart is clear; and if your heart is clear, Jesus can guide you to the brighter way.
Paul said he served God without condemnation his whole life, and yet there was a time when he persecuted God’s own people! He committed that crime, though, as Jesus had foretold that some men would: by assuming “that he is performing a religious duty for God” (Jn. 16:2). But because he was sincere about what he was doing, trying to do good and believing he was doing good, Jesus had mercy on him. Paul himself would later testify as an old man that he obtained mercy from God because he sinned “ignorantly in unbelief” (1Tim. 1:13).
So, do what you truly believe is the right thing to do. Your knowledge may be imperfect, but just make certain that your intent is! This is called “sincerity”, and it is possibly the least appreciated of all the wonderful qualities of righteousness. The whole world mocks sincerity because it fears it. Sincerity exposes evil even without trying. Sincerity is the way out of spiritual darkness. Even if what you are doing is wrong, if you are sincere (judging by Paul’s example), Jesus will have mercy on you. Besides, with an open and sincere heart, you will be better positioned to recognize his mercy when he offers it.
The wisest advice is always the simplest. Solomon told his son, “Fear God and keep His commandments.” Paul told young Timothy, “Keep yourself pure.” Preacher Clark told us, “If you have a doubt about it, don’t do it.”