In John 15:1–5, Jesus tells us to “live by the truth” and “give no offense so that you may remain in the love of God” (NIV).
We live in a world riddled with corruption, deceit, and immorality.
Our parents and culture have taught us that we should not be like this. But as we grow up, we begin to see that these things are happening everywhere around us. We start to notice that people are being dishonest with us, lying to us, and stealing from us. We learn about scandals and the businesses ripping off their customers, making you wonder if there’s any honesty left anywhere. You start to think that maybe honesty doesn’t matter anymore.
But then you find out about integrity. You read about it in class or even in an article. You hear about it from your pastors and leaders, who discuss honesty in business deals, relationships, or whatever they’re discussing on Sunday morning. And suddenly, you realize there’s something different about people who have integrity—something special about them. They don’t just tell the truth when asked a question; they also believe it’s important enough to put their reputation on the line.
What does “integrity” mean?
Integrity is the quality of being honest, ethical, and true to one’s word or character. The Bible defines it as sincere, blameless, and upright wholeness (1 Samuel 12). It is a core value that we should all strive for in our lives because it helps us live according to God’s will rather than our own. Jesus Christ placed a perfect example when He was tempted in the wilderness. Do you even remember the story of Shadrack, Mishek, and Abednego?
When we are authentic, we are true to ourselves and others. When we are honest, we do not say things that are not true; when we are faithful, we keep our promises and agreements; and when we are courageous, we stand up for what’s right, even when it might be challenging and risky. It’s a character trait that we all need, but it’s especially crucial for Christians because it helps us to stand out as people of God.
Why is integrity important in the Christian life?
Integrity is a critical virtue in God’s work and has many benefits. It signifies a healthy character, church, family, and nation.
We can’t be faithful to God if we don’t live up to His standards. The Bible says that “the Lord knows what a man is thinking” (Proverbs 20:6). God knows everything about us—even our secrets. He knows what we’ve done wrong and what we’re trying to do right (1 Corinthians 4:5-8). To be closer to God and live more like him, you must show him your true self by being honest and genuine with yourself and others around you. Only by showing others how much you care about them will they come closer to God themselves (John 15:12-16; Ephesians 5:25-32).
Integrity is essential for Christians because it shows them how Christ lived his life—honestly, faithfully, and courageously. All Christians can learn from Christ’s example of living a life of integrity by doing what he said (John 14:23), keeping their word (Matthew 5:33), and loving others as themselves (Matthew 22:39). We portray a good picture of Christ, which can even reattract non-believers to the kingdom. When we live with integrity and honor God, other people will see this in our lives and want to be around us because they know that our behavior reflects our beliefs about God.
Integrity sets us apart from others who don’t have it or don’t care about maintaining their integrity. When we live with integrity, we can be proud of who we are and how much God has changed our characters for the better. If we behave with integrity, we can point back at ourselves and say, “I am who I say I am.” And how can anyone trust us if we can’t do that? We should not make decisions that will cause us harm or pain if they are not in line with what Scripture says about the right decision for us to make.
It is good to stop hiding behind false masks or pretending to be something we’re not so that people will accept us into their lives when they don’t know anything about us. We also must be willing to take responsibility for our actions by admitting when they go wrong or get us into trouble instead of lying, so no one knows the truth.
Living with integrity may bring more blessings and peace into our lives. You are free from the quilt or mind of suspense. Please remember the story of Ananias and Safira and the consequences that followed (Acts 5)
How can you show and grow in integrity?
Be real to others
“You shall not have wrong sentiments against your neighbor.” – Exodus 20:16
“But you are to love others as yourself.” – Leviticus 19:18
Psalm 37:21 says, “The wicked borrow and never pay back”
Integrity calls for being mindful of your fellows. This can include not gossiping about others behind their backs and even helping them when they are in need. When you gossip, you are simply making judgments, and at some point, you may even lie to support your arguments. Even if a neighbor wrongs us, we should correct them with love. Do you spend much more than you earn, leaving you in debt? This is not integrity. Paying your debts and taxes on time is an excellent way to show goodness to others. Not keeping promises on debts means you are indirectly stealing from your neighbor. We should focus on staying with people well and consider putting away whatever may cause conflict. Be willing to apologize when you are wrong, even if the person hurt by your actions is not around anymore and can not be there in person at that moment.
Malachi 3:8, 10 says, “Is it right for a person to cheat God?
This is a command question that comes with an offer at the end. God has blessed you with many things, including your business, a good job, and everything else. We should give our tithes and offerings to Him. When we tithe faithfully, God has promised to bless us more and in abundance. The favor of Him will surpass our expectations, and you will see doors opening and acceptance in whatever you are doing.
Being independent at work
Colossians 3:23 Work wholeheartedly at anything you do as if you were doing it for the Lord rather than for people.
It is good to be honest and willing to work without much supervision. Keep in mind that God is your real boss. Going to work late, leaving early, not meeting deadlines, and wrongful budgeting prove no point in being a person of integrity. We have seen people getting into offices whose minds are only on money. Some people are not satisfied with their salaries and tend to be greedy. This is not the correct way a Christian should live. We tend to be willing to give our best and be ready to guard the resources of where we work.
These steps will help grow your integrity as an individual and benefit others around you. Godly integrity comes when you take the right path despite the cost.
My prayer today is
Dear God, I give thanks for today. Your mercies are even with me every day. Thank you for reminding me about integrity. It is something. You want me to have in my life. You are a good shepherd, and I pray today that God helps me to live a blameless life. There are many times in which I have lived without integrity. Whatever I have done, O Lord, please declare me innocent. Please help me to stay with other people, help me to keep promises, allow me to be kind, and may your guidance be a portion for me. God help me to be willing to support your work through my offerings and tithes. Through Christ, I pray Amen.
If you’re at a crossroads and don’t know which path to take, spend time in prayer. God will guide you if He has something for you to do. And when you encounter temptation, remember to ask yourself what is right and wrong, not just what seems easy or convenient at the time. When we reflect on our own choices and those of others around us every day, we can grow in integrity—and that means more than just being able to say we did our best.