Recently, there have been news articles and TV segments about people doing stupid (and sometimes dangerous and illegal) things and then posting it on social media. These actions run the gamut from graffiti to teachers becoming amorously involved with underage students to bank robberies and even murders! You are most likely acquainted with the idiom, “Give a man enough rope and he will hang himself.” The Bible makes a somewhat similar observation especially applicable to repeat offenders. Ecclesiastes 8:11 (NWT 2013) says: “Because sentence against a bad deed has not been executed speedily, the heart of men becomes emboldened to do bad.” (Other translations)
This highlights the need for wise use of our conscience. When it pricks us, it is better to listen to it and stop doing whatever it is our conscience is warning us about than it is to feel as if we got away with something and repeat the action. Eventually, our “emboldened” ways will make the punishment much worse than if we had listened to our conscience.