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6:19 AM   [23 Apr 2017 | Sunday]

Attacks on Integrity

 But the righteous are bold as a lion (Proverbs 28:1).  Why do some feel timid, even though they are righteous in Jesus Christ?  There are a number of reasons, but we’re going to address one, and it has to do with integrity.  Jesus is the Truth and apart from truth there is no righteousness.  It is one of the things the enemy attacks with a vengeance.  He seeks to disseminate his lies, which is often very subtle.  Part of integrity is the desire for the truth, regardless of where it leads you.  Truth always destroys the lie, just as Light always obliterates the darkness.  The moment someone steps away from the truth, the less bold he will find himself.  As long as you seek the truth in its purest form, lies will not be able to take hold of you.

Even if you have been deceived, the moment you receive the truth, the shackles of deception will fall off you. 

John 8:31 So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”  Your integrity with the Word of God is crucial.  Many are deceived into believing false doctrines because of their personal lusts.  They are idols of their heart, which they prefer over the truth.  When truth “supports” their lust, it becomes perversion of the truth.  Even the enemy supports his lies with elements of the truth.  Factual statements are not necessarily the truth; however, truth will always be factual.

Part of truth is being true.  This is where integrity comes to play.  For example, in the work place, a person with integrity does not require the boss to stand over him in order to do his job right.  “Right” includes doing the job correctly, but simply doing the job correctly may preclude intensity.  Doing the job right means it will not only be done correctly, it will be done robustly.  The employee with integrity may actually accomplish more without the boss’s presence than when he’s there.  How confident are those with the boss when he returns after they have been slack in his absence?  Faithful are those whom the boss finds busy about their work.  Why is this important?  What kind of influence will we have on others for the Kingdom if we’re not being true?  The idea is to be trustworthy; regardless of whether someone sees you that way.

Wouldn’t you rather be trusted because you are trustworthy than to have people trust you because you talked them into it? 

If people cannot trust you, you will never be in a position to be their confidant when they need a listening ear.  If you do all things as unto the Lord, and not with mere eye-service, you will never need a taskmaster to keep your nose to the grindstone.

The enemy will attack your integrity in numerous ways.  Obviously, he often uses people.  To be clear, we have the victory in Jesus Christ Who has overcome the world.  Therefore, let’s not overemphasize the devil.  Besides, such emphasis can lead to not taking responsibility.  If you are in the palm of the Lord’s hand, how could the devil be there?  He only gets in by invitation, which is why he tries to deceive us into inviting him into our lives.  He will not openly knock at your door because he knows you will not knowingly let him in.  The devil can only entice someone to sin if they have something in his heart with which to entice him.  James 1:13-15 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.

Satan tried to tempt Jesus, but could not succeed in the temptation.  Why?  Because Jesus had nothing in Him by which to be tempted.

Integrity allows for an honest assessment of one’s heart, and that assessment requires Holy Spirit.  God never tempts anyone with evil, but He does try our hearts.  If you blew it, do not despair.  God knew what you would do before you did it.  He made a provision for it.  1 John 1:9   If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (see also 1 John 2:1-2).    Allow the incident to expose whatever is going on in your heart.  Let the Lord reveal it to you, which is one of the reasons we ask for wisdom.  He not only forgives us, He cleanses us.  His kindness leads us to repentance.  When our heart comes under the Light of truth, we will repent if we’re genuine with Him.  His grace empowers us to be free of lust.  Sometimes, when exposure comes, He’ll ask you, “What do you want to do with this?”  It is a great opportunity for freedom.  With clarity comes repentance.  With repentance comes integrity, and with integrity comes conviction.  Are you bold as a lion?

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