Summary: This sermon talks about the integrity in the Life of Job
Text: Job 2:1-10
Integrity and the Great Wall
In ancient China, the people desired security from the barbaric hordes (tribe, swarm) of the north. So they built the Great Wall of China. It was too high to climb over, too thick to break down, and too long to go around. Security achieved!
The only problem was that during the first hundred years of the wall’s existence, China was invaded three times. Was the wall a failure? Not really--for not once did the barbaric hordes climbed over the wall, break it down, or go around it.
How then did they get to China? The answer lies in human nature. They simply bribed a gatekeeper and then marched right through a gate. The fatal flaw in the Chinese defense was placing too much reliance on a wall and not putting enough effort into building character into the gatekeeper.
The movie, Few Good Men, depicts that in the midst of uncertainties, lies, graft and corruption, and evils of men there are still few good people who are willing to fight the odds, and win it. There are few good men left, men who will uphold truth, men who are full of integrity.
How can David say, "in my integrity you uphold me and set me in your presence forever." There must be something in the word Integrity... or else how can it keep us from God’s presence forever.
A. Integrity is Semper Fidelis - always faithful (1-3)
This is the Motto of the US Marine Corps. But one day in 1987, as some marines were guarding the world’s most safest place, the US Embassy, two Soviet Agents were able to get inside without being caught. The reason, they forgot their motto, semper fidelis. Two marine guards exchange them for something material.
AIDS is simply loosing one’s own integrity or faithfulness.
Let’s look at our text and see how the Bible defines it!
1. There is no one like him - people whom you can easily distinguished from others. Twice God said this to Job in chapter 1:8 and 2:3c. It is being implied here that God is trying to challenge Satan to try Job. No situation or circumstances can ever change his devotion to God. God is betting on Job here against the enemies attack. We are reminded of what Paul said in his first letter to Corinth: "No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." (NIV)
2. Blameless and upright - their characters are flawless. Positive traits outweighs the negative. Their weaknesses are swallowed up by the grace God has given them.
3. Fears the Lord - to shun evil is an action towards God and just not an emotion tingling of the skin. It is not what we feel that determines who we are, it is what we do.
Always faithful means loving God more than his benefits. It is worshipping God in spite of the difficulties (1:9, 20). The climax of his statement is found in 2:10. It erases our idea that suffering is a direct result of our disobedience or sin.
Job’s Sickness Characterized By
1. painful festering sores 7:5 4. bad breath 19:17
2. nightmares 7:14 5. excessive thinness 19:20 6. fever 30:30
3. disfigurement 2:12 7. boils
B. Integrity means speaking the truth v.10b
It is not charging God of any wrongdoing in us. As well as not sinning in what we are saying as in deliberately committing perjury. Take for instance the account of Abraham in Genesis 20:1-7. Here, we can see that sometimes unbelievers show much integrity than us who believe in God.
20 Now Abraham moved on from there into the region of the Negev and lived between Kadesh and Shur. For a while he stayed in Gerar, 2and there Abraham said of his wife Sarah, "She is my sister." Then Abimelech king of Gerar sent for Sarah and took her. 3But God came to Abimelech in a dream one night and said to him, "You are as good as dead because of the woman you have taken; she is a married woman." 4Now Abimelech had not gone near her, so he said, "Lord, will you destroy an innocent nation? 5Did he not say to me, ’She is my sister,’ and didn’t she also say, ’He is my brother’? I have done this with a clear conscience and clean hands." 6Then God said to him in the dream, "Yes, I know you did this with a clear conscience, and so I have kept you from sinning against me. That is why I did not let you touch her. 7Now return the man’s wife, for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you will live. But if you do not return her, you may be sure that you and all yours will die." 8Early the next morning Abimelech summoned all his officials, and when he told them all that had happened, they were very much afraid. 9Then Abimelech called Abraham in and said, "What have you done to us? How have I wronged you that you have brought such great guilt upon me and my kingdom? You have done things to me that should not be done." 10And Abimelech asked Abraham, "What was your reason for doing this?" 11Abraham replied, "I said to myself, ’There is surely no fear of God in this place, and they will kill me because of my wife.’ 12Besides, she really is my sister, the daughter of my father though not of my mother; and she became my wife.