Why do we need Integrity
In this lesson we are going to look at the subject of integrity. In the world that we live in today we do not see very much integrity in people anymore. For this lesson we are going to look at the first two chapters of the book of Job. We see plainly in these two chapters that Job was a man of integrity.
In the first two chapters of Job we see that God and Satan get into a discussion concerning Job. It is interesting to note that God is the one that brought up Job. You might say he was picked out to be picked on. That is an interesting thought would it be a wonderful testimony for us if God could use us to prove a point with Satan.
Satan claims that Job only serves and honors God because God has blessed everything that Job has and does. So God lets Satan kill Job’s children and take away all his possessions in one brief moment. Then note that at the end of chapter one, Job does not sin nor curse God.
In Job 2:3 we see God and Satan talking again and not that God says that Job still holds fast his integrity after all that Satan has done to him. So God is the first one to acknowledge Job’s integrity. Then Satan says to God if you touch his flesh he will curse you. So God lets Satan smite Job with boils from the sole of his foot to his crown.
The next time we see someone comment on Job’s integrity it is in Job 2:9 where Job’s wife asks him dost thou still retain thine integrity. She wants Job to curse God and die. But once again we see that Job does not sin with his mouth or curse God. After all that he has lost he maintains his integrity.
What is integrity?
In Noah Webster’s 1828 dictionary integrity is defined as : Wholeness, entirness, unbrokeness, unimpaired state of anything, particularly of the mind, moral soundness or purity, incorruptness , uprightness, honesty.
Note the part about unimpaired state of anything particularly of the mind. If we are going to have integrity we are going to have to have a certain mind set about things. Note that we can see Job’s mind set about his possessions in his response after he loses them. He said “the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away, blessed be the name of the LORD”. (Job 1:21b) Job views everything he had as belonging to God therefore the Lord gave it to him and the Lord took it away. If we would think of everything we have as God’s we could have the same mind set as Job.
We see Job’s mind set again after he is questioned by his wife about his integrity. Note that his answer this time is “shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil”. (Job 2:10) Once again we see Job having his mind set that God knows best.
Keeping our integrity will coincide with having the right mind set concerning God.
Where we can really see Job’s integrity is in his testimony. Let us look at the things that God says in regards to the testimony of Job (Job 2:3). There are four things said about Job in this statement by God, they are that his is a perfect man, and upright man, a man that feareth God, and a man that escheweth evil. We will look at these individually below because they are things that we need to keep our integrity.
1) A perfect man (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
- Now when it says that Job is a perfect man it does not mean that he is sinless. What it is saying is that he does what God requires and when he does sin he obeys God in getting that thing right.
- In 2 Timothy 3:16-17 we see that the word of God is given to us and it is profitable for doctrine, reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness. These are the things that make a man perfect and thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
- If we are going to have and maintain integrity we are going to have to know what God’s word says about the way we should live, act, dress, talk, and think. This is why we have the word of God.
2) An upright man (Proverbs 11:20)
- The above verse says that those who are upright in the way are a delight unto God.
- Once you know what is right or wrong by the word of God then you simply have to do right and you will be upright. If whatever you are tempted with is wrong or even if it looks wrong then doing it will keep you from being upright.
- Remember that being upright is one of the definitions for integrity.
3) A man that feareth God (Ecclesiastes 12:13)
- You can plainly see from Job’s response to his situation that he pleased God. We need a healthy fear of the Lord. And by the way fear of the Lord is fear of the Lord not reverence (Hebrews 12:28).
- If we have no fear of God then we will not do what is upright nor will we seek to know what is right and wrong. This is the state of modern day America.
- Fear of the Lord will cause us to keep our integrity not to mention keep us out of a lot of trouble.
4) A man that eschweth evil (Proverbs 22:3 ; 2 Timothy 2:22)
- Eschweth means to flee from, shun and to avoid evil.
- If we use God’s word to know what is right and wrong, and we are determined to be upright in the way and the fear of God causes us to be determined to be upright then when evil comes we will flee.
- One of the signs of a lack of integrity is when a person will not take themselves out of a situation where they are tempted to sin and therefore keep falling into sin. We must run from temptation and not play around with it.
How can integrity benefit us?
1) It can keep us from sin (Genesis 20:6)
- In the above passage we see where a pagan king that had integrity was kept from sin by the integrity that was in his heart.
2) It guides us (Proverbs 11:3)
- Having integrity is a guide to us. When we determine we are going to live for God that integrity can keep us from doing wrong. Will we still sin yes but that same integrity will not allow us to be content with sin. It will cause us to get that sin right with God and help us to avoid it in the future.
3) It will preserve us (Psalms 25:21)
- Integrity can keep us from sin. This is especially important in the life of a young person today who is faced with the temptations of sex, drugs, alcohol, destructive behavior, bad friends, etc.
What a young person needs is to establish some integrity and determine to keep themselves pure, clean, and right in the eyes of God. This will not be easy and as we see in the story of Job it may cost us a lot of things. But in the end it will be worth it all. Just read the last chapter of Job and see how it turned out for Job.
Why do we need Integrity : Handout
1) Who is the first one to comment on Job’s Integrity?
2) How do we know that Job still has his integrity after everything happens to him?
3) What is integrity?
4) From this definition what do we see is going to have to happen for us to maintain integrity in our lives?
5) Where do we see Job’s Integrity?
6) The following things are said about Job in his testimony, list a scripture that goes with each one and show how they are connected with integrity.
One that Feareth God
7) List three things that Integrity does for us. Give a scripture for each one.