09/15/15 Integrity

READING: Daniel 4-6

TEXTS AND APPLICATION:  Today’s reading includes the story of Daniel in the lion’s den. King Darius (regretfully) sent the prophet there when he prayed to God rather than follow the king’s edict to petition through no one but him (Dan. 6:6-18). God protected Daniel, of course, and sent an angel to clamp shut the lions’ jaws. 

It’s the background to this story that is the focus of this devotion, though. Other leaders whom the king had appointed were jealous of Daniel (who was about to be placed in authority over the other leaders), so they tried to find cause to accuse him and remove him. What they found, though, was nothing:

Dan. 6:4  The administrators and satraps, therefore, kept trying to find a charge against Daniel regarding the kingdom. But they could find no charge or corruption, for he was trustworthy, and no negligence or corruption was found in him. 

His enemies wanted evidence of Daniel’s wrongdoing, but they could not find any. Though they likely would have capitalized on anything even remotely wrong, no such problem could be found. Everything was above board enough that Daniel’s opponents had to seek another law to capture him. 

Even for Christians, temptations to be less than honest, especially in business, are real. Adjust only a few numbers. Nobody will miss a dollar or two. Change the report. Avoid the taxes. Break your word. Undercut the team . . . after all, nobody will know. Business corruption can become so pervasive that it’s almost assumed to be the norm. 

It simply cannot be the norm for believers, however. Integrity really does matter — especially for people whose responsibility is to proclaim truth.  

PRAYER: “Father, make me a person of complete integrity. Grant me grace to avoid even the appearance of negligence or corruption. Make me so trustworthy that even my enemies will listen when I share the gospel with them.”