New memory verse added today!
Memory verse 1: Everything in the heavens and earth is yours, O Lord, and this is your kingdom. We adore you as being in control of everything. 1 Chronicles 29:11
Memory verse 2: “Just as the rich rule the poor, so the borrower is servant to the lender” Proverbs 22:7
Memory verse 3: “the way of the fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man is he who listens to counsel” Proverbs 12:15
Memory verse 4: “you shall not steal, nor deal falsely, nor lie to one another” Leviticus 19:11
This is one of those subjects that seem so obvious, but yet can have such an incredible impact on our lives and our testimony as a Christian. We are going to look at a lot of scripture today. If we were asked, we would all say we are honest people. We don’t steal, cheat or lie. We are generally very good people. And that is true. God does make an interesting statement, though, in the book of Judges. “everyone did whatever he wanted to, whatever seemed right in his own eyes” vs 17:6
The trouble is that God demands absolute honesty. Several days ago we looked at a verse implying if we can’t be trusted with the small things, how can God trust us with bigger things.
“the Lord loathes all cheating and dishonesty” Proverbs 20:23
“Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord” Proverbs 12:22
God demands we are truthful in all circumstances, because He is truth and we are made in His image
“Be holy yourselves also in all your behavior, because it is written ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy” 1 Peter 1:15-16
Every day we face situations that require a decision. I know I do. And my answer can either be one that pleases God, or it doesn’t. There is no in between. Many times I have chosen correctly, and many times i have chosen poorly. I haven’t ever stolen money or property from someone. I do not believe i am a thief. Or am I? In the big things, we probably pass with flying colors, but how about the small things, the less “significant” things? Do we take a few extra minutes on our coffee breaks? We are stealing company time. When the cashier gave you the incorrect change, did you tell them? When that candy machine gave you two chocolate bars instead of one, did you give the other one back? Have you ever tried deflecting the blame to get out of trouble? Do we add a little to the invoice, do we charge for something unnecessarily, do we report all our income, do we spend time on our social media when we are on the clock? There are so many small areas where we can be tempted to be dishonest.
Let’s look at 5 reasons God has imposed the standard of absolute honesty.
- We cannot practice dishonesty and love God
“He who walks in his uprightness fears the Lord, be he who is cooked in his ways despises Him” Proverbs 14:2
2. We cannot practice dishonesty and love our neighbor
“if you love your neighbor as much as you love yourself you will not want to harm or cheat him…or steal from him…love does no wrong to anyone” Romans 13:9-10
3. Honesty creates credibility for evangelism
“prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world” Phillipians 2:15
4. Honesty confirms God’s direction
“put away from you a deceitful mouth, and put devious lips far from you. Let your eyes look directly ahead. Watch the path of your feet, and all your ways will be established” Proverbs 4:24-26
5. Even the smallest dishonesy is sin
“whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much” Luke 16:10
Look at the example of Abraham
” I have sworn to the Lord.. that I will not take a thread or a sandal thong or anything that is yours.” Genesis 14:22-23
Honesty is something that winds it’s way through every portion of our day. And the reality is we are imperfect people and we will make mistakes. But the great news is God is a God of grace. We can ask forgiveness, we can start today with a clean slate. How awesome is our God!
Something to think about: Are you consistently honest in even the smallest details? and if not, how do you propose to change?
Prayer: Lord, thank you for you saving grace. We are sinful and make mistakes. We have been dishonest sometimes. Lord forgive us and show us how to be honest and holy as you are holy. Help us to be more like Christ. We thank you for you unending love for each of us, in Jesus name, amen.
Tomorrow, we continue to look at honesty and what to do if we have been.