We hear all the time of people who have integrity. Those who have it are looked up to by others. It is a trait that mostly everyone wants to possess. Well the reality is, anyone can have it. It is a trait that God expresses pleasure to when he sees it. Integrity is something that is not always talked about, but it is something that everyone needs to have. The Bible talks about integrity, and so we’re going to study this topic. We are going to learn what integrity is and how we can have more of it. So let us begin the study of integrity.
As with any topic, we must have a basic understanding of what it is we’re studying. So what is integrity? A basic definition would be something along the lines of “someone who believes in and shows moral principles.” Someone who has integrity stands by what they believe. They won’t back down from a challenge, and even if they go down a wrong path, they always find a way to get back on the right one. Integrity is important in the life of a servant of Christ. It’s how we keep on the path to everlasting life. King Solomon knew this when he speaks of integrity in Proverbs 10:9 when he says, “Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out.” Solomon tells us we will be secure if he have integrity. He also claims that being poor yet having integrity, is better than being rich but crooked in your ways- Proverbs 28:6.
There are many examples of integrity in the bible. One that is often overlooked is Samuel. 1 Samuel 12:1-5 says,
“Samuel said to all Israel, “I have listened to everything you said to me and have set a king over you. Now you have a king as your leader. As for me, I am old and gray, and my sons are here with you. I have been your leader from my youth until this day. Here I stand. Testify against me in the presence of the Lord and his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? Whose donkey have I taken? Whom have I cheated? Whom have I oppressed? From whose hand have I accepted a bribe to make me shut my eyes? If I have done any of these things, I will make it right.” “You have not cheated or oppressed us,” they replied. “You have not taken anything from anyone’s hand.” Samuel said to them, “The Lord is witness against you, and also his anointed is witness this day, that you have not found anything in my hand.” “He is witness,” they said.”
Samuel, even in his dying days, had an immense amount of integrity. He wanted to give back and pay back everyone he had wronged in his life. With everyone he had cheated and everyone he oppressed, he wanted to make it right with him. What is even more interesting is the response of the people. They told him that he had never done any of these things. He had not cheated or stolen, or oppressed any one of them. That is amazing. Even until his death he was going to stand in good morals.
The best example of integrity we have is Christ. Hebrews 4:15 says, “ For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are-yet he did not sin.” Jesus was tempted by man and Satan in every way, and yet he lived his life without sin. That is sticking to good moral principles to the maximum. Jesus is the perfect example of integrity because he was perfect in every way.
As we conclude this study, integrity is important. If we have integrity, it leads to other qualities as well. If we are to be like Jesus (1 Peter 2:21), then we need to have integrity, because he had integrity. Always remember this: whatever we do, we must work for the Lord.- Colossians 3:23.
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