Prov 20:6 says, “Most men will proclaim everyone his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?” When I read this verse, I think of a resumé. When you prepare a resumé, you highlight all the good stuff you have done, that you hope qualifies you for the job for which you are applying. But a resumé doesn’t reveal whether you will uphold the company’s policies, avoid potential conflicts of interest, and be a good representative of the company. In other words, the resumé might show that you are good at something, but it doesn’t reveal whether you are faithful. The people who are really “good” must also be faithful.
A good soldier must be a faithful servant – 2 Tim 2:3 – notice this “good soldier” is a good soldier “of Jesus Christ.” David was faithful to Saul [1 Sam 22:14]. The centurion, whose servant was healed in Matt 8, was “a man under authority.” Joab, who was an excellent general, was not faithful to David in the end and was, therefore, excluded from the list of his mighty men. You need a soldier who is not only good but who is faithful to his men and his commander.
A good minister must be a faithful steward – 1 Cor 4:1-2 – there are some very capable and eloquent speakers, but they have not been faithful stewards of the mysteries of God. According to 2 Tim 4:2-4, preachers have been instructed to preach the word with all long-suffering and doctrine. The time has come when they will not endure sound doctrine. And so they heap to themselves teachers having itching ears. These men are not faithful stewards. It’s better to be faithful than it is to be a gifted orator.
A good teacher must be a faithful disciple – 2 Tim 2:2 – the Lord doesn’t want us to invest our time in gifted teachers if they are not faithful. We are to commit what we have been given to “faithful men.” If you want to do more for the Lord than you are doing right now, be sure to be faithful. You need faithfulness more than you need an education, at this point.
A good man or woman must be a faithful spouse – Matt 19:5-6 – a man may be handsome, a good provider, and very athletic, but if he is not faithful, he will not make a good husband. A woman may be beautiful, a good cook, and have a great personality, but if she is not faithful, she won’t make a good wife. You’d be better off sacrificing some “looks” for more faithfulness.
Conclusion: in the end, when we give account of ourselves to God, we are going to be judged based on our faithfulness. In the parable of the pounds [Lk 19:12-27], the men who are rewarded with authority over cities are “faithful” in very little. That’s how important faithfulness is to the Lord. He’s not as concerned with how good you are at something as he is with how faithful you are.