Mr. Right and Wrong

If we say we live in a post truth culture (don’t know the difference between right and wrong) and then Jesus says in John 14:17 that he will give us the Spirit of truth, how do I know which Spirit I’m listening to when I choose difference between right and wrong?

And -
Is my conscience and the spirit I listen to the same thing or 2 different things?


@jeevankoshy, you have asked an excellent question. Our consciences can be corrupted, so how do we know when we are hearing the truth of the Holy Spirit in us? God has given us the law written on our hearts as the apostle Paul states:

“For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭2:14-16‬ ‭ESV‬‬

But we can more accurately know what the spirit of truth is when we read God’s word.

“So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples,”
‭‭John‬ ‭8:31‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already. Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.”
‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:1-6‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Our consciences are given us by God as part of our thought processes to convict us as to what we believe is right or wrong. The Holy Spirit is God himself who dwells in Christians and guides us in truth.

Here is a good explanation of the difference between our consciences and the Holy Spirit:

Also, an article that describes our consciences from a christian perspective:

I hope some of this helps you understand these distinctions! God bless! :blush:


Hello @jeevankoshy

Thank you for your great question :slightly_smiling_face:. Unfortunately, it is also not a question which is easy to give a straight forward answer to. We might live in a culture which is post-modern or post-truth, but just because we live in what has come to be regarded as a societal and cultural norm, does not mean that knowledge of truth is not still readily attainable through General and Special revelation. Part of the problem is, we are also living in a fallen world where sin exists, as well as one of an ongoing spiritual battlefield where Satan is also working at deceiving us and making us believe lies for truth. In the discipline of philosophy, your category of question would fall into the field of epistemology. This has to do with how can we know what we know and whether we can be justified in what we believe.

@gchop has already provided you with some excellent passages to give scriptural support of ways to come to a knowledge of what is truly of God. Even though discernment can be hard at times, I believe that the best place to go is the Source :slightly_smiling_face:. The more you know God and enter into relationship with Him, the greater ability you have to know what is of God and what is not of Him. Just like when we spend time with close friends and family, we can come to know how they think and feel about certain things without even asking them. In the same way that we can know people, we can also know God, and therefore what is true. So submit to God, pray and ask Him to let you know if you believe anything that is a lie, desire to know Him better and keep seeking after His will, and be obedient to His direction upon your life.

Hosea 6:3: "Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord;
his going out is sure as the dawn;
he will come to us as the showers,
as the spring rains that water the earth.”

1 John 5:20: “And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.”

To your last question, our conscience (deciding right from wrong) is a part of our overall consciousness (our self-awareness). Our conscious can be manipulated to believe lies due to our sinful nature, or again, because of demonic spirit influence working against us. The Holy Spirit always brings truth to how we think and what we come to understand and know about what is right and wrong, and ultimately about God. I would say that our conscious is a part of our personal spirit given to us by God, and so it has the ability and capacity to discern and know truth, but also the ability to believe lying spirits.

A great question @jeevankoshy. Others will have varying viewpoints regarding your questions that will be able to add to the discussion. I hope that what I have written will be of some help for you.