Is your conscience healthy or is it troubled today? We're joined by the Reverend Brian Kachelmeier to talk about how the conscience is formed and the one place where a troubled conscience can find comfort. Rev. Kachelmeier is the author of Reading Isaiah with Luther.
Elizabeth Pittman (11s):
Is your conscience healthy or is it troubled today? We're joined by the Reverend Brian Kachelmeier to talk about how the conscience is formed and the one place where a troubled conscience can find comfort. Reverend Kachelmeier, serves as pastor of Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church in Los Alamos, New Mexico.
Elizabeth Pittman (42s):
He's also the author of Reading Isaiah with Luther. Welcome, Pastor Kachelmeier.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (48s):
Oh, it's great to be here.
Elizabeth Pittman (50s):
We're glad that you could join us today.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (53s):
Yeah, these are, these are crazy times. That's for sure. So I'll tell you some strange things are happening here on my neck of the woods, but,
Elizabeth Pittman (1m 3s):
Well, I think so. And you mentioned before we got going that you have just been freed from a 14-day self-quarantine.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (1m 10s):
Yeah. So I, I traveled across the country to move my son from Virginia all the way to Texas A&M, he's doing graduate work there. And so we drove across the Southern States where all these COVID, you know, cases are spiking. At least they were back in the day, but here in New Mexico, if you cross the border and you come back into the state, you have to self-quarantine for 14 days. So if I have to sell quarantine for 14 days, so we've been having service online the last two, Sundays three Sundays, I suppose, actually the Sunday was gone too.
Elizabeth Pittman (1m 44s):
Well, welcome back to the real world. We're glad that you are freed from your self-imposed time away as we get going. We're going to talk about the conscience. Give us a definition of our conscience. What exactly are we talking about over these next minutes?
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (2m 2s):
Yeah. So what we want to look at is this, this Old Testament word, the heart. So the word conscience is not in the old Testament actually comes from the Greek, but we want to start with that foundational understanding of the Old Testament that we're really looking at the heart. And when we're talking about a heart, we're not talking about the hallmark heart. We're not talking about emotions or feelings. What we're talking about is kind of the seed of, of, of who you are, how you perceive things, how you see things, how, you know, things it's, this, the heart is kind of the essence of who you are, how you think, how you act.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (2m 35s):
All of this has to do with your heart. It's who you truly are in your essence. But when we talk about the conscience in particular, what we're talking about is a shared, seeing a shared perception, a shared knowledge, and that therefore the conscience is, is a gift. God gives each individual, but the conscience then can be changed and formed to conform to the culture itself. So one person sees things one way and another person sees them a different way, but then they start talking to each other and they start to rub off on each other and they start forming their, their different perceptions and the way they see things.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (3m 15s):
So the idea of a conscience as being awareness to be, to be conscious of things. So like for instance, here in Los Alamos, right now, this, this 2020, where everything's crazy with the Coronavirus, the COVID-19, we also have bears black bears here in New Mexico. And so you have the bears because it's kind of a drought season. So they're coming down from the mountains, they're coming down to the cities. And not only are there bears that you're to be aware of, but what's really crazy in the 2020 year is this summer, the bears are up in trees.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (3m 52s):
So we keep seeing all these pictures of somebody saying, look, here's a bear in my neighbor's tree. My daughter was down the street with one of her friends, and there was a bear in the neighbor's tree. And my daughter's taken a video of this bear hanging out in the tree. So now you have to be aware, not only of bears, just walking around on the sidewalk, but you now have to look in your own backyard and look up in the trees and see, is there a bear hanging out there so that the conscious has this kind of, this idea of, of Rona awareness of what's going on, but it's kind of, it's a shaped and shared with others.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (4m 25s):
So others tell you that there's a bear on 44th street. So now you're aware and alert, Hey, there's a bear there, but in a, in a very similar way with the conscience, when you're aware of this threat or this danger, you, you become kind of heightened in your looking around and you, you kind of, this feels scared. There there's a level of terror. Am I going to make the wrong move? Is a bear going to sneak up on me? Am I going to be a Malta? We had a lady who was mauled and had to be rushed to the hospital and then life supported a flight down, to Albuquerque at their regional big hospital there.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (5m 1s):
So it brings us awareness, but even with the bears, what's really striking is that it brings a terror and a fear. What, and when you're in your own backyard, you might have a bear in the tree that might all of a sudden, literally pounce on you, or just fall on you because the branches break,
Elizabeth Pittman (5m 17s):
Remind me that I'm not going to come visit you until the bears are out of the trees. We'll be staying away from New Mexico for a little while. Oh my goodness. So, so definitely if your environment impacts your conscience, what we surround ourselves, and what we take in definitely matters.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (5m 39s):
Yes, yes. So it's a knowledge. And so when we see conscience, think of it as a shared knowledge. And so when others inform you of, of certain things that they see, or they know it, it shapes how you begin to see things and how you begin to know. And so the culture itself that we are living in the context, wherever we're placed, like here in Los Alamos, right now I'm aware of bears, okay? Other people aren't in other cities, but, but we're aware, so our kids don't even walk down the street.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (6m 12s):
So it kind of, it starts to shape the, the behavior and how we're actually interacting with each other in our own little neighborhood. How are we going to safely meander through these walkways with potential bears? And so that conscience is it re it's reflective of the context of where you are. But we, we also must come to terms that we live in a creation that's fallen. So wherever we are, things are falling apart. I mean, originally in the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve were not worried about bears and trees, Adam and Eve could freely stroke strolls through the garden and not be concerned or not be worrying.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (6m 54s):
Is this going to be the end of me because of a bear? And because we live in a fallen world, these things happen with Adam and Eve, a bear would have never dare attack to either a man or woman, but now the whole creation is turned upside down. And so there is suffering. There is sickness, there is pain, there is dying and death. And this is the reality that we're in right now. And the culture itself, the fallen creation itself, kind of it molds us and shapes us to be bound to the ground of this earth away from God.
Elizabeth Pittman (7m 30s):
And just, just to put a finer point on the conscience, the conscience is not God's voice in our head, correct. It's a gift from God, but it's reflective. It's, it's pointing us to the sin in our lives. Am I saying that correctly? Yeah.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (7m 45s):
And I think that there's a little bit of a confusion on this because when we talk about the conscience, this is in the realm of the natural law. And so each individual has the gift of a conscience from God. Each individual has the natural law written upon the heart. So when you are created and formed and shaped and built in the womb of your mother, this is where you, you have this gift of a factory sealed conscience. That is, is right with the things of natural law of observation from nature itself.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (8m 17s):
And so we all have that natural law, but the problem is that the conscience, as we grow older and out of, after we are birthed out of the womb of our mother, then we start to interact with each others, eh, others perspectives, others, knowledge or others ideas. And a lot of this has to do with ideas, how w we want to view the world and the creation that we're in. And so we want to be very careful that it's not merely the inner voice. Okay? That's not what this is. So when we talk about the conscience, it's not like, like in Pinocchio where Jimminy cricket is that inner voice, let your conscience be your guide, that, that inner itself, because we are fallen creatures because by nature, we are sinful and unclean and enemies of God by nature.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (9m 4s):
We want to rebel against God. We, we actually hate God. We hate his word. We are in a state of rebellion with the rest of fallen creation. So it's not merely this, this inner voice. Now the, the inner voice is, is kind of the, what you, you, you, you're kind of debts that thinking process. So, so think of the inner voices when you are thinking or saying to yourself, so you're trying to, trying to put some thought into what are you going to do? What are you going to say? How are you going to act, how are you going to interact with others?
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (9m 36s):
And you, you kind of, you, you speak to yourself if you will. But when we're talking about the conscience, because we found we're living in a fallen creation, we cannot rely on our own sinful knowledge, our tainted knowledge, that's imperfect. And we can't just rely on what others are telling us, because their knowledge is imperfect also. So ultimately what we need is we need God's word and God's word is external. It's from heaven to earth.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (10m 6s):
It's from God to us to change us inwardly. This is where the Holy Spirit will work to bring conversion, open eyes, to see hearts, to believe ears, to hear. The Holy Spirit is changing how we view this reality that we live in that it's a fallen creation, but at the same time, that word of God is coming to reset the conscience to rewrite what we have. We have written over like our we've kind of erased in that natural law and the heart because we listened to others instead of God.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (10m 40s):
And so God is kind of resetting. So the word of God kind of resets the conscience to be in sync with God, again, with God's will and how God seats things, because God himself is truth. He is the reality. And what we see in this world is tainted with sin.
Elizabeth Pittman (11m 1s):
What does the book of Isaiah, which you've done a lot of writing on and speaking on, have to teach us about the conscience.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (11m 9s):
This is what I, I love that Isaiah just opens up right away. That it's a vision. Okay? So this is a vision of Isaiah. Now, when we talk about a vision, we're not talking about the idea of Isaiah, that he has a, a notion that this is how things ought to be. When we're talking about the prophetic vision of the old Testament, these prophets of old we're talking about how God has placed this prophet before God's face. And so the prophet stands before God's face, and now he sees God and he sees things differently.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (11m 45s):
God allows him to see properly the reality, and then he's to go out and tell others what he has seen and what he knows. So that now our, our site, the, how we perceive things, how we have ideas, how they are converted and shaped to the truth of God's word. And so when Isaiah opens up right away, that this is the vision, but it's with this purpose of changing hearts of reestablishing and sinking, the conscience back with God's will.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (12m 16s):
And so immediately in chapter one, you have this, this language that's really just playing off of, of Deuteronomy 32. It's really that, that song of Moses. And so Isaiah is bringing the people back to the word of Moses. And he's going to start off and say here, Oh, heavens, and give ear O earth. I mean, it just mirrors some of everything, the totality of creation and notice this it's it's from God. So it's, it's throughout to the heavens to hear the word of God, the earth would give ear.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (12m 48s):
And by this word, things would be changed. And this is where y'all with and speaks and gives the prophet, this word to speak to his people. And then he immediately goes into this, the speech, and the message is this son's. I have reared and brought up, but they have rebelled against me. That's that state that we all are in is in that state of rebellion against God and sin. And so immediately Isaiah brings everything to the point. He doesn't beat around the Bush. And he says, my sons, my own people have rebelled against me.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (13m 21s):
And then the imagery that Isaiah uses, I love this imagery, as he says, the ox knows his owner. So this is the language of knowing the ox knows his owner, the donkey, his master's manger, but Israel does not know my people do. I do not understand. So here you have the prophet of Isaiah sent by God, to God's people to reset their consciences because their conscience is, have been cultivated by the culture around them.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (13m 52s):
They are now living in a context of, of rebellion against the creator in the land of Canaan. And they're not living with the word of God, the promise trusting it. It is a promised land. And so this is how Isaiah chapter one opens up with his own people. This is where we've got to start. We've got to start with God's own people. The word comes to God's own people to change the way they see things to change the way that they perceive that they know things. And they, you get into like Isaiah chapter five. And these are those woe statements.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (14m 24s):
This is Whoa to those who call evil good and good evil woe to those who put darkness for light and light for darkness who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter woe, to those who are wise in their own eyes and shrewd in their own sight. Now, this is the problem is that the, the conscience is that that shared knowledge that shared seeing, but we live in a fallen creation.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (14m 54s):
We like to follow after this fallen creation. And we fall for the devil's tricks all the time that we want to be just like the rest of the world in rebellion against God. And we think we're wise in our own eyes because we have this earthly knowledge or this earthly wisdom that we've ascertained from others. And now we think we are Mr. Know-it-alls, or I guess what's a misses, know what all's too. I suppose
Elizabeth Pittman (15m 22s):
I have to imagine that if Isaiah were walking the streets of our world today, he would have a lot more than five woe statements. I mean, when you just look around at everything happening in our world, it feels like everything is gone to pieces. And that's where we're seeing people kind of, and I'm not gonna phrase this correctly, but when you look at protests happening, when people saying, you know, I'm my conscience compels me to get up and argue about pick your topic.
Elizabeth Pittman (16m 2s):
It seems that we have definitely lost sight of the right thing to keep our conscience on the straight and narrow.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (16m 11s):
Yeah. And I think that this is the, the issue at hand, that that conscience is kind of the the shared knowledge that you have of what you believe to be right and wrong. And how you perceive reality is then how you are going to speak, how you are going to act. And what we have right now in our culture here in America is you, you have this, this heightened, especially in election year, but that there's heightened sensitivity of political awareness and social activism that with this presidential election coming up, you say, okay, here's the state of society right now.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (16m 52s):
And you have people who look around and you'll say, I don't like the way things are. I want them to change. And so that conscience is kind of that your perspective, it's a shared perspective with your community, with your culture of how you see things and how you want things to be in line with the way you want them. And you have this motivation for a social activism. And again, with these, these protests and these riots is that people want justice.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (17m 24s):
And, and understand that when we talk about creation itself, all of creation knows that there's a create tour that has put everything into order, but yet in this fallen creation, things fall into disorder. And there's this desire of the heart of humanity to want to bring back order. But with that conscience, that becomes tainted, that becomes numb. That becomes in error. It tries to set things in order in the way that it seems right.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (17m 57s):
And so you'll have this, these protests that turn into these riots because you want justice to have justices to make things right. You want things righted that are wrong, but when you have a conscience, that is an error you're, you're being fueled by a perspective that is in animosity with God's will and God's word. And so you're following what others say is this is my will. This is my desire. This is my word, which is right.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (18m 27s):
And other things, and anybody who disagrees with me as wrong. And that's why when Isaiah paints this picture, everything gets turned around. And when you're in the midst of this, you can't see properly. So Isaiah says woe to those who call evil. Good. And so, again, what is striking about this is when you have people who want a social justice, social activism, they want things to be made, right? And they don't go around saying, we want evil.
3 (18m 56s):
They say, we want good.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (18m 58s):
Yet. It it's changed and it's turned upside down. So they things that are actually evil, they're calling good. So when you have disorder and chaos and destruction and violence and vandalism, and even further murders in the streets, because you are, are, are protesting against a police officer brutality. But somehow all of a sudden you can be as brutal as you want, because you are self-righteous yourself justified. You're going to make things right in your own image.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (19m 29s):
And so you're calling things that are evil, actually good. And then you're turning everything over and saying, the things that are good are actually evil. So if somebody says, we want order, and they say, well, that's evil. Order is bad. We want institution. That's evil. Institutions are bad, and you constantly have the, this whole, everything has been turned upside down. And that's why when Isaiah paints this picture of, of darkness. So people fly into this darkness and they think it's light.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (20m 1s):
They think it's light. So there they're putting darkness where there was light and where there was light. They're making things dark where things were bitter. They've turned it around and they've made it sweet. And they say, this is sweet. This is what I desire. This is what I want. And the bitter thing is the thing that I don't want. So this is how everything's been turned upside down. And this is why they're, they're wise in their own eyes. They're, they're shrewd in their own sight. But this is that mob mentality. When you gather with self like minded people that all say, we're the ones who are in the right.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (20m 37s):
It motivates you to do things that are ultimately wrong, because you don't know the light from God's word. How can a person who is,
Elizabeth Pittman (20m 48s):
Has a nagging conscience and is struggling to find the lights. But when they look around, all they see is brokenness. All they see is darkness. How can they find Christ? And come back to the light.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (21m 3s):
This is ever since the beginning of remember with Adam and Eve in the garden, when they, they rebelled against God, they ate the tree that was forbidden for them to eat. And it, as soon as they did this, they, they knew something was wrong. Okay. But it didn't really trouble them. It wasn't until they heard the voice of God that they became scared. And so they heard the voice of God, but because they were in a state of fallenness and rebellion against God, it was not a voice with God's word.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (21m 36s):
It was merely just a sound. And in fact, it was a terrifying sound. And so God comes to call Adam and Eve to himself to seek and to save the lost. But yet Adam and Eve want to flee and hide from God, because they are terrified in their conscience. All they hear is just a sound, but it is God who is so patient with them. He's merciful, he's tender, he's kind, he's loving. And he comes to them and he continues to pursue them. And he gives them his word.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (22m 7s):
And that word is eventually made manifest Ian, the promise of the Messiah. So if you just have a voice without the word of Jesus, without the incarnation, that's going to restore creation. All you have is just a sound and it's a terrifying sound. So the only way to reset the conscience of course is with God's word. But this is where we end up with this very awkward situation that we're in is that you can't just go and share the word with somebody, and then just expect that the person automatically is, is cured or is comforted and is consoled and says, wow.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (22m 46s):
Now I feel at peace with God and the whole world. Again, we need to understand that humanity is in a state of rebellion against the creator. And by that state, we hate God's word. And so the only key to solving this problem, this riddle, curing this disease is to bring God's word, but just like any kind of a medical procedure. I mean, if you go to the doctor and you say I've got a cancer, well, the doctor says, well, we're going to have to do these invasive procedures and it's going to hurt.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (23m 22s):
And there's going to be these things that are gonna happen. We're going to have to take a blade, a surgeon's blade, and we're going to cut you open and you're going to bleed and you're going to have to heal. And you say, no, no, I don't want any of this. I don't want any of this, but that's the way of healing so that you'll go back to that Isaiah chapter 32, where we, we know who God is, and he's the one who wounds. And he's the one who heals. He's the one who kills, but he's the one who makes alive. So how is the conscious made, right?
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (23m 52s):
Is going back to God's word, but that word, ultimately, that's going to be heard when your heart is terrified. Your conscience is troubled, is you're going to go back. And if you're looking at some kind of a word, how can you make things, right? It's only going to become worse. A the more that you recognize and realize that you're a center and rebellion against God, the more this knowledge is going to make, you want to send even more rebel, even more new and even want to hate God and not even hear anything he has to say, but this is why the profits like starting with Adam and Eve, where God came to him, the word was sent by the father to be heard by Adam and Eve, that this was a word that was going to bring comfort and peace.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (24m 35s):
But the only way that word can bring comfort and peace is when you hear about the Messiah, the Christ, the one who suffers with us and the one who suffers for us, the one who enters into creation and is one who is then, Oh, pressed by all of these things specifically sin. So the one who knew no sin became sin so that we might become the righteousness of God. That unless you hear Jesus in particular, you cannot have true peace in your conscience with God.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (25m 12s):
The problem is that in, in our media, in our culture, in this whole consumerism, people are always trying to sell you some type of self-help book or a package of, of lectures or sessions or some kind of a speech that you can just a podcast you can listen to. And then you can feel good about yourself. And you can have a pretend, a false sense of security that now everything is well with your soul. But the only way to have true peace is that God has to come in and rip that wound open in the conscience, which is word of law.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (25m 50s):
That, that just, it bears everything that you are a sinner in need of forgiveness. And the only way you can obtain forgiveness is through the shed blood of Jesus. So it's that word of God, but that word of God, in particular, with God's primary act of forgiveness that you need in order to receive true peace and the conscience and peace with God,
Elizabeth Pittman (26m 17s):
What do you have to say to a person who is questioning whether their conscience is right there? They're doubting what they're hearing their conscience say to them.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (26m 30s):
I think with this question, you'll have to bring some clarification here because you can, you can wonder is my conscience right? On all kinds of different levels? You know, you can wonder and say, if I, if I wear a mask, you know, with all this COVID 19 type stuff that we have right now, and all these rules and restrictions, if I wear a mask, is that the right thing to do? So you're having people who are struggling with this. You have some people who say, wear a mask because it's a benefit for your neighbor. And then you have somebody else's say don't wear a mask.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (27m 1s):
Cause it doesn't do you any good. And it's an infringement on your, your Liberty, your, your individual freedom. So you would, you would have to give me some kind of like more specific examples of how we would kind of go through this mess, because even with the mask, I mean, you can't go to God's word and say, which chapter in the Bible talks about a mask. And, you know, I, I saw on the internet the other day, somebody trying to self justify and saying that Jesus would have, you know, wore a mask and he would have done the the social distancing of six feet.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (27m 36s):
And then somebody else responds and says, Jesus was the one who touched the lepers to heal them. So I don't think Jesus would a social distance from those people with the disease. But so it depends upon what, what the, the idea is. What's the, the notion.
Elizabeth Pittman (27m 54s):
Well, I think if, if a person is, is questioning what they're hearing their conscience say, but it's contrary to what they might be hearing society say, you know, it's, it's different than, you know, take the mask example. You know, I've my thoughts. Tell me that I should be wearing this for these reasons, but society doesn't agree with me. Am I right? Or are they right? Yeah.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (28m 20s):
I mean, ultimately the only way we can know what is right, what is wrong? What is good? What is evil is to look at God's word, because ultimately it's, God's word that reveals to us, this revealed knowledge of, of who God is, what God does, what God desires of us. So the only way that we can have a, perfect touchstone, of clarity is to compare it to God's word, to compare it to God's word. So somebody says, this is what you ought to do now in the realm of Christian freedom.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (28m 55s):
I mean, this is where we are free to do these things in the gospel. So you can say to me, wear a mask and now, and you can say, it's going to be a benefit to your neighbor so that a grandma's Schmidt doesn't get sick. And I can say, okay, I choose to be of benefit to my neighbor and I choose to do that. And so then I can freely do that without any qualms of conscience, but we get into this problem where people are trying to shame us publicly, trying to make a spectacle that we are now in the wrong.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (29m 26s):
So like you, you get these people are pointing out and saying, look that person's not wearing a mask. And so you're trying to shame that person out publicly. And so you're never to, to follow the mob rule just because the majority say is what is right. That doesn't establish it as right in God's sight. So these people might be wise in their own eyes, but we always got to go back and look to God's word. And there's always this kind of, this level of, shall I say, for lack of a better phrase, kind of a, I mean, this is going to be a little harsh, but it's a stick it in your eye Lutheranism if that makes any sense, but it's, it's the idea that we're going to hold to God's word.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (30m 10s):
And we're going to say yes and amen. And we're going to be thankful to the revealed knowledge of Jesus that God gives us. And as God has given to us, the gift of, of knowing who the Messiah is, being justified by a faith and receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit, working in our hearts, we have this ability to, to interact with others in the place where God has placed us. We are free from the guilt and condemnation because of our sin because Christ took that away from us.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (30m 40s):
So this is kind of that Lutheran perspective. Now that we are free, we are at peace with God. We are now free to freely love our neighbor, and we can do it in however we choose. But as soon as somebody tries to demand that you must do it in this way. And you, if you don't do it in this way, then you're a sinner and you stand condemned before God. This is where that kind of that stick it in your eye type a Lutheranism. If you will kind of falls into place. I mean, it's the old historically.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (31m 11s):
It's like when, when we have baptism God institutes it, God gives us this promise that when we are baptized with water and the word we are United to the death and resurrection of Jesus, we have that promise that we have been crucified with Christ. And we are now participants in the bodily resurrection. We have that promise. And so God doesn't Institute specifically a directly how much water, one should use. I mean, is it one ounce is that two gallons of water that you're supposed to pour on somebody?
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (31m 42s):
Are you supposed to dunk somebody in a 100 gallon dunk tank? But it, historically, when we, as Lutherans, we encountered those Anabaptist who demanded that you must, you must baptize by dunking the person under water. We stood firm and said, no, we're not going to fall into what a culture says, and we're not going to conform ourselves to the culture and be bound to the ground here. Instead, we are going to rejoice in God's word and the free forgiveness of sins founded Christ. And so that's when we started saying to, to prove that we know this to be true.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (32m 16s):
We're not going to try to make anybody guilty or uncertain whether or not they've truly been baptized as like an infant with a water being poured or sprinkled upon them. Because the issue wasn't the amount of water, the whole issue was the promise and veracity of God's word being United with Christ, same thing in communion with the, with the, the wine that's being used. As soon as the Calvin has said, you have to use red wine because red wine is the color of blood.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (32m 47s):
We Lutheran said, well, because you say we have to use red wine. We'll use white wine because you're not going to tell us what is right or wrong and what is right in your own sight. And we're not going to follow your earthly wisdom. We will stick with God's word and we will rejoice in the forgiveness of Jesus. So, I mean, it is a Lutheran. We kind of have that freedom in the gospel where we're here to be of service to our neighbor. And if somebody says to me, you, you ought to wear a mask because it's going to be a benefit for your neighbor, wash your hands.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (33m 20s):
Be aware if you're sick, if you have these symptoms if you have a fever, stay home, I'm going to say, okay, for the benefit of the neighbor, I'm going to do this. But as soon as the culture starts telling us, this is how you must worship God. This is how you can only be right with God. So for instance, like here in the state of New Mexico, when, when our governor comes down and says, you, you must not sing. So this is the Royal decree in our land. You, it is forbidden it's for boat and to sing and worship services.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (33m 52s):
Well, as the people of God, we say, well, thank you for your insight. Oh, governor. But our faith is formed by God's word. And throughout the scripture, the whole Psalter is about singing praise to the Lord. We sing, this is our religion. This is what we do. So as soon as somebody starts telling you that, if you don't do it my way, then you are evil. Then you are sinful. Then you are wrong with God. This is where we stand firm with the gospel and say, only Christ himself can give us peace with God and peace in the conscience.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (34m 27s):
And only Christ and scale of can establish how we receive the forgiveness of sense.
Elizabeth Pittman (34m 33s):
Before we wrap up, what does a healthy conscience look like? And what are those steps that we can take to make sure that we are maintaining a healthy conscience? And if we're parents or responsible for other people, how are we teaching our children and others to maintain a healthy conscience?
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (34m 53s):
Well, I think that the bottom line here is that we are not to be wise in the ways that the world, our wisdom comes from God. The wisdom of God is incarnate. Jesus is the wisdom of God in flesh. And the wisdom of God gives to us the spirit of wisdom, which is the Holy Spirit. And this can be only found in the word of God in the complimentary, this, this law that reveals and exposes our sin, but primarily in ultimately the gospel that shows us our savior, that parents of children should be familiar with God's word.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (35m 30s):
And this is the shared knowledge, the shared seeing the vision that they should instill in the eyes of their children. That is how they are to see the reality of this fallen world and to see Jesus who is the reality in the flesh. So ultimately we as parents, we want to be familiar with God's word, but the law must not predominate. So it's not just the law, the law of God's word, that you just pound in your kids, the 10 commandments, and say, if you know the 10 commandments, then you'll be a good and right person, your conscience will be right.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (36m 5s):
The parents must also be aware that we, when we know God's will, and God's law. This actually as sinful human beings incites us to actually want to do more sin. So you always have this problem of sin. We can't eradicate sin. So parents ought to be very clear on the forgiveness only found in Jesus. I mean, this is the whole in the book of Isaiah, when the prophet is sent out, he sent out to go preach the word, but it's in Isaiah chapter six where he that's that call narrative of Isaiah, where he sent out and placed into that profit back office.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (36m 39s):
And he says that they are going to see, but they will never perceive. I mean, they're going to, they're going to hear, but they're never going to have understanding. So he's going to speak their word, but they're never going to get it because they don't want to find Jesus. They don't want to find God's answer to sin. God's answer to a troubled conscience, which is only found in Jesus who brings peace. So Isaiah sent out to do this, but Isaiah is also the one who gives it to us, that beautiful vision of chapter 53, the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, that this is the one that we are to set our eyes upon that this is the one where Isaiah will say down at verse 11, it's, by the knowledge of him, the righteous one, many will be justified.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (37m 23s):
So it's not a level of, of self-justice or self-righteousness of how you want to make things right, how you want to make yourself right with God. But the only one who can make us right with God is Jesus. So you're constantly setting your eyes on him, by the knowledge of him for he's the one who will make intercession for transgressors and back in Isaiah 32, that effect of righteousness of justification will be peace, peace with God. And that's what Paul will say in Romans chapter five, that therefore since we have been justified by faith, we now have peace with God.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (37m 60s):
Why? Because of Christ. So which through our Lord, Jesus Christ, that we now have access to the father in faith in which the Holy Spirit is at work in us. And the Holy Spirit is going to work through the word and that word that is heard, and that word that is centered on the person and work of Jesus. So we want parents to instill this in their kids so that they would see Jesus as the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus is the one who was wounded, but the one who was healed, the one who was put to death, but the one who Rose again, and it's he him, the lamb who is also the good shepherd who lays down his life for the sheep.
Rev. Brian Kachelmeier (38m 43s):
So that's ultimately how we want to form the conscience with a vision that shared with Isaiah and Moses of Jesus and his blood that's shed for ourselves.
Elizabeth Pittman (38m 53s):
And that's the perfect place to focus and B and it's the gift of our conscience is a pretty incredible thing. Thank you for taking the time with us today, to talk about that and lead us through this discussion. We'll keep our fingers crossed that no bears fall out of your trees. As far as I know, we don't have Lewis, so you can keep them there in New Mexico. So pastor cash will Meyer very much for your time today.
Elizabeth Pittman (39m 23s):
Listeners we'll see you next time.