God's law, revealed in its completeness in Christ, so awakens the conscience to God's will and our own propensity to sin that sooner or later we are led to that self despair which is so helpful in fully appropriating the full benefits of what God has accomplished in Christ. Having been slain by the law we are now wonderfully brought to the end of ourselves. In this way the law drives us to Christ and His cross as the only basis for true peace and full assurance.
Only then can a liberated and rehabilitated conscience begin to fulfil its true function in those who now have 'no confidence in the flesh' but in whom the righteous requirements of the law are actually fulfilled by the Spirit. Not yet perfect, with much that is still deficient and relentlessly contested, nevertheless a real fountain of righteousness and peace is established in the human heart that is all of grace and fully pleasing to our righteous Father.
John DUNKLEY BTh, Dip.Min. and Dip. Pastoral Studies. He is an ordained Baptist minister and has pastored a number of Baptist churches. He has also ministered at Westcare Baptist Mission - an inner city ministry and served as a voluntary Police Chaplain.