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What does it mean to have conviction?

Does conviction have to do with judgment?
 

Thank you for asking a question on This is your Bible.

The word conviction means

1. The act of convincing a person of error or of compelling the admission of a truth.

2. The state of being convinced of error or compelled to admit the truth.

3. A strong persuasion or belief.

The word is not used in the Authorised Version of the Bible except in the case of the scribes and Pharisees bringing to Jesus a woman taken in adultery and asking if he agreed with the law that she should be stoned to death.

Jesus replied "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her”.

In so saying Jesus convinced them that they were all sinners.

John 8:9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

The word translated convicted is used again in Titus.

Titus 1:9 Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers.

It is this aspect of the word which is of importance to us.

The purpose of preaching the Gospel is to convince others of the truth of what is written in scripture so that they might believe or have faith.

The word conviction is used in the Revised Standard Version as a definition of faith.

RSV Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

We see that the conviction or belief in that which has not yet happened produces action in the individual.

Hebrews 11:7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.

If we read Hebrews 11 it is a catalogue of what men and women did in their lives because of their faith or conviction that God will fulfil all that he has promised.

Verse 13 says:

Hebrews 11:13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises (that is: the things promised), but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.

The chapter concludes:

Hebrews 11:39 And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise (that is: the thing promised):

40 God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.

The delay in the fulfilment of the promises is so that we in our generation can believe and become heirs of the same promises.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us–ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

So the opportunity is open to us today to be convinced by what is written and take action commensurate with conviction.

Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved...

Galatians 3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.

29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham‘s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Belief in eternal life in the kingdom of God through Jesus Christ as promised in the Bible is a conviction worth having.

1 John 2:25 And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.

I hope this helps.

Glenn Smith

 
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