Acts 24:16 (KJV)
And herein do I exercise myself, to have always a conscience void of offence toward God, and toward men.
At fifty-seven years old I now find that I have a great deal of pain in my body. Things are getting tired and muscles long neglected are being less forgiving than in my younger days. I am coming to realize that, if I am to keep moving, I am going to have to exercise carefully and regularly.
Paul exercised too. But the sort of exercise he spoke of was on a much more important level than merely to mitigate pain. Paul’s exercise plan involved two key elements, each related to the other; he exercised to have a conscience void of offense:
This, I am sure is in order of priority. His first concern was toward God. He one time wrote that he preached not as pleasing men but God. Paul strove in exercise to see that his conscience was right with God. This would have required that he knew God’s will, character and word. We can’t have a conscience right with God unless we know what is right with God.
This can be a complicated thing since men are so diverse and even the same man can be fluid, pleased by one thing today and another tomorrow. Paul must not have meant that he tried to make everyone happy. To have a conscience void of offense toward man means to do for every man what we know and believe to be in that person’s best interest.
This strategy of exercise has led to Paul’s effective ministry two thousand years after his own passing. His regular exercise cost him at the moment but paid off eternally.
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Acts 24:16 Paul’s Exercise Routine
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