“But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep Your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then I will be blameless, innocent of great transgression.” Psalm 19:12-13
There are certain things that we are just born knowing are wrong. Most likely, no one has to tell us that murder, stealing, and lying are wrong. We know that not only because of God’s guidance in the Scriptures, but also because of God’s goodness in the soul. He has put a moral alarm clock in every one of us that goes off to let us know not only that we have done something wrong, but also that we’ve done something wrong against God.
A courtroom can convict you of a crime, but only God can convict you of sin. You cannot be right with God until you recognize you are “wrong” with God…separated from Him because of your sin. The only way for a lost person to understand this truth is for God to reveal it…and that is what God does in the soul. Psalm 19:12 explains this truth with this question, “But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults.” We all have hidden faults. None of us are as good as we think we are. At times, all of us are worse than others think we are. We can detect some obvious sins, but only God can detect all sins.
Only God can detect, correct, and forgive our hidden faults. When you do something wrong, others can forgive you. You might even be able to forgive yourself; but you will never be fully, freely, and finally forgiven until God forgives you, because all sin is first and foremost against God. This is why a guilty conscience is evidence of the goodness of God. A guilty conscience awakens our minds to the sin that has darkened all of our hearts; and God wants us to live a life that is free from the one thing that pollutes and poisons all of life – and that is sin.
Application: Do you understand that a guilty conscience is evidence of God’s goodness, because it reveals our sin and shows us our need for a Savior?