Christian Discipling
26Sep/11Off

Integrity

definition.
1 an unimpaired condition; soundness
2 uncompromising adherence to a code of esp. moral or artistic values; honesty, incorruptibility
3 the quality or state of being complete or undivided; wholeness, completeness

What is integrity for a Christian?

A simple rule is being the same in private as we are in public.

Where can this be a problem?

In how we deal with our family and friends or just about anyone we meet.

What benefits are there?

If we maintain integrity in our words and actions, then we benefit ourselves and those we come in to contact with.

The benefit to us is we don't have to consistently check whether what we are doing or saying is in accordance with the last time we were in the same or similar situation. We just act the way we normally do without allowing situations to dictate how we act or react.

For everyone we come in to contact with, the benefits are that they don't have to be concerned about how we will react because they can judge this by comparing our reactions in other situations. Probably the most important benefit to others is that they will form their own idea of Jesus from how we act. If we act consistently and with integrity, that says something positive to them about our Saviour.

Integrity checks

def. The process God uses to evaluate our heart-intent, and to build a foundation for more of Jesus in our lives.

Old Testament
Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego got some serious integrity checks, but passed anyway.  I know we're not supposed to have favourite bits of scripture, but we all have them. This is one of mine.

Daniel 3:16-18
16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to the king, "O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 17 If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king. 18 But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up."

New Testament
Safe to say that Paul knew all about integrity checks.

Acts 20:22-24
22 And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. 23 I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. 24 However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace.

Types of check

  • temptation (conviction test)
  • restitution (honesty testing)
  •  value check (ultimate value clarification testing)
  • loyalty (allegiance testing)
  • guidance (alternative better offer after Holy Spirit led commitment to some course of action)
  • conflict against ministry vision (guidance/faith testing)
  • leadership backlash (perseverance/faith/guidance testing)
  • persecution (a steadfastness check; may come through prophecy or contextual situation)

Uses

  • to see follow through on a promise or vow
  • to insure burden for a ministry or vision
  • to allow confirmation of inner character strength
  • to build faith
  • to establish inner values
  • to teach submission
  • to warn others of the seriousness of obeying God

Write down two lists and talk to a Christian you trust about them.

1. Areas where I may be subject to integrity checks.

2. Areas in which I need to seek greater integrity.

© Paul Wood

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