Recap! How Do I Develop Integrity?
- Fear of the Lord
- Intent or Purpose
Matthew 7, Jesus said that anyone who hears his words and puts them into practice is like a man who built a house on solid rock. So integrity starts with listening to the words of Jesus and doing what he says? Thank You, Jesus! To know the right path to take is wisdom to accept it is Integrity.
Why the fear of the Lord?
To fear the Lord is to obey Him and to obey is the foundation of wisdom–Ps111:10.
In John 13:17; Jesus said if you know these things, happy are you if you do them.
The fear of the Lord is your readiness to act and make the required changes. It’s not when you decide but when you decide and do. So it is being a doer and not a talker only.
Job 27:5 says; till I die, I will not remove my integrity from me. I will have the moral courage to make my actions consistent with my knowledge of right and wrong in God’s word.
Today We will start by discussing the Intent or Purpose.
Developing a lifestyle of Integrity is to adopt a lifestyle of making a godly stance purposely.
You don’t live honestly and truthfully by chance or accident! You do so by intention.
Intentionality precedes a routine. So self-examine, deal with yourself on the subject and conclude by deciding to live a life of integrity. It is purely by personal choice and nothing else. You can’t walk and maintain integrity without having proper deliberation first.
From the Scripture, in the book of Daniel 1:8a– But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat.
Daniel and his companions are excellent biblical examples of men who adjusted their lives to make godly decisions.
With every decision comes responsibility, the responsibility that comes with living in integrity is a personal adjustment.
These include changes in your values, mindset, principles, and life structure to name a few.
- Daniel 1:3-8: Integrity in the Kitchen
- Daniel 3:13-19: Integrity in the Face of Fire
- Daniel 6:1-13: Integrity in the Face of Lions
Questions for you to reflect on
Do you know that integrity is a matter of personal decision?
What adjustments have you made in your integrity walk lately?
I pray that as you begin to walk in the integrity of your heart, you will start to attract the blessings of God and the favors of men in Jesus’ Holy name.
What Must I Do To Strengthen My Integrity?
We have been called by God through Jesus Christ to increasingly, continually pursue truthfulness, righteousness, and honesty to develop and maintain a lifestyle of integrity.
How can I achieve this?
- Submit to Christ’s Lordship
- Build, Value, and Maintain Godly Relationships
- Acknowledge Your Errors
You need Understanding! What is understanding? Understanding is the knowledge of the Holy, the knowledge of God, Proverbs 9:10b.
Understanding comes from reading and living by the word of God alone. We must align our thinking with God’s Word and not compromise.
Submit to Christ’s Lordship.
Jesus is the only one to do that which pleases God, the earlier we know and accept this truth the better for us.
Build, Value, and Maintain Godly Relationships.
When you build, value, and maintain godly relationships, it helps strengthen us in our dedication and obedience to God.
Acknowledge Your Errors
Everyone misses the mark at times, and as believers we are accountable, we should not blame others for our mishaps but rather accept, learn and amend our ways. Proverbs 22:28 says, Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.
We live in an era that approves of ungodly values and behaviors, and because God knows our struggle, He sent His Holy Spirit to guide and teach us how to live with integrity. Ask Him to help you to become more like the person described in Psalm 15.
What Are The Benefits of Integrity?
Let’s be clear that since we are not of this world, neither are the reward or benefits which flow from walking in integrity.
The benefits are made clear to us in Psalm 24. Who shall ascend to the hill of the Lord? Who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who does not lift up his soul to vanity, nor sworn deceitfully He shall receive the blessing from the LORD and righteousness from the God of his salvation. Psalm 24:3-4 (KJV)
Let’s Examine The Answers!
1. He Who Has “Clean Hands”.
The phrase as used does not speak of the dirt on a person’s physical hands but speaks of the purity of their deeds. Speaks of what a person does!
Let’s Digress A Little!
In the court of law, especially in Western law today. When a plaintiff goes into a court of equity and asks the judge to do something on his behalf, the judge has the right to examine that plaintiff’s conduct in the matter.
The plaintiff must be free of any guilt or contributing acts if he is to win over the defendant. This is referred to as the “clean hands” doctrine.
In other words, the plaintiff must have clean hands to prevail. The clean hands’ approach is apparent in the Bible and secular law. Praise the Lord!
2. He Who Has … “A Pure Heart.”
The phrase “a pure heart” is used to describe what a person thinks. It is directed at inward thoughts. Whether our impure thoughts come from our fallen nature or a demon, they are in either case, not pleasing to God.
As soon as we become aware of them, we must reject them and put them out of our minds by exercising mental discipline hundreds or thousands of times as we develop the integrity of a pure heart.
Why is God so concerned with our thoughts? Because He knows that thoughts proceed to action. So, to act with integrity, you must think with integrity. As water reflects a face, so a man’s heart reflects the man in Proverbs 27:19 (NIV)
3. He Who Does Not “Lift Up His Soul to Vanity.”
But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. Matt 6:20 (KJV)
Here Jesus Christ our Savior, warns us to remain heaven-minded, heaven-bound. We should not take too seriously the world and the things therein because everything that can be seen shall be faded away but it is the unseen that can never fade. All is Vanity!
In addition Philippians 4:8 (KJV) states; Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
4. He Who Does Not “Swear Deceitfully.”
The phrase “swear deceitfully” means to swear by what is false, to lie, a false witness. God is calling us not only to tell the truth under the oath of law but to tell the truth at all times!
A false witness speaks lies. Proverbs 6:19a (KJV) is one of the things the Lord hates. A truthful witness gives honest testimony, but a false witness lies” Proverbs 12:17 (NIV)
This is an area that which knowing the scriptures by heart, songs of truth, and worship are so important. Jesus said: “For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.” Matt 12:34 (NIV) if we fill our minds, our hearts, and then our mouths with the Word, songs of praise & worship what comes out of our heart is nothing but purity and truth.
I pray that you and I will enjoy the reward of living a life of integrity toward man and God.