November 17, 2015
THE GEORGIA CAPITOL DEVOTIONAL - 17 November 2015
Personal integrity ought to be greatly valued in all our days; yet, it cannot be achieved or manifested if one is not conscientious. Even in the present time, it can be increasingly difficult to witness characteristics of an ethical and honest nature. Scandals are the emphasis of the headlines. Businessmen sell stocks illegally, and even corporate executives mislead their stockholders. Government officials accept kickbacks. Politicians are known to disregard traditionally respected ethics. Integrity is becoming more and more compromised throughout many dimensions of life. Our contemporary culture encourages more and more individuals who are proficient in cheating, concealing, distorting, falsifying, and stealing. Our present time greatly demands that the people of God are relentless in the pursuit of personal holiness and integrity. God’s people must take seriously what it means to be “the salt of the earth” and “the light of the world” (Matt 5:13-14), if they are to make a difference in the world, by God’s grace and for his glory.
Psalm 101 reveals a fervent steadfastness to achieve personal integrity in the entirety of one’s life. King David is the author of Psalm 101, which reflects his determination to live righteously before God and the people. Psalm 101 reveals David’s desire to witness integrity restored on a national level. David understood that such integrity must first begin with his own life. God’s people will truly impact society for the better only when individual believers are resilient in their own spiritual maturity, which means living – with personal integrity – in a manner that honors God’s commands and glorifies his name. Prior to witnessing others live with personal integrity, it is always crucial that we first commit ourselves to such a pursuit of godliness.
David began by affectionately praising God for his incomparable character: his “lovingkindness and justice.” Consequently, he “will give heed to the blameless way” (v. 2), that is, a life of personal integrity. To be “blameless” is to be faithful and obedient to God, in such a manner that one’s life is beyond reproach. The request for God’s presence – “come to me” – is a conscientious prayer for the Lord to strengthen one’s resolve in “the blameless way.”
David understood the relationship between one’s heart and eyes (vv. 2-3), and thus resolved to shun any practice of sin that would enter and remain in his life (vv. 3-4). Consistent with the standards of God’s lovingkindness and justice, the psalmist asserted his intentions regarding those people to favor and those to shun (vv. 5-6). David was especially careful not to allow any prideful people to have intimate access to the inner circle of his life (v. 6). Only those who are faithful and those who live in integrity would know his favor (v. 7). David understood that his actions would cleanse his royal court, and thus would extend to the royal city, and ultimately to the entire land (v. 8).
To live with personal integrity is to have God’s Word integrated into every aspect of one’s life, which means that no dimension is impervious or indifferent to maintain faithfulness and obedience to Scripture, the Holy Bible. Personal integrity is distinctive of someone who is characterized by moral uprightness and truthfulness. Someone with integrity is consistent with his or her expression of faith in God, and such determination to live righteously is to guard one’s heart and eyes, in addition to surrounding oneself with godly people. When the people of God demonstrate personal integrity, God is glorified, and society will be better for it!
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By God's Grace and for His Glory,
Ron J. Bigalke, Ph.D.
Capitol Commission Georgia