A life of unyielding integrity wins the respect of Christian and worldling alike.

In all details of life, Christians are to follow the principles of integrity. These are not the principles that govern the world; for there Satan is master, and his principles of deception and oppression bear sway. But Christians serve under a different master, and their actions must be wrought in God. They must put aside all desire for selfish gain.


To some, deviation from perfect fairness in business deal may look like a small thing, but our Savior does not thus regard it. His words on this point are plain and explicit: “He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also with much; and he that is unjust in the least is also unjust also in much.” A man who will overreach in a small matter will overreach in a large matter if the temptation comes to him.


Christ’s followers are obliged to be more or less connected with the world in business matters. In His prayer for them the Savior says, “I pray not that thou shouldst take them out of the world, but that shouldst keep them from evil.” Christians are to buy and sell with the realization that the eye of God is upon them. Never are they to use false balances or deceitful weights. God says: “Thou shalt not have in thy bag divers weights, a great and a small. … But thou shalt have a perfect and just weight, a perfect and just measure shalt thou have; that thy days may be lengthened in the land which the Lord they God giveth thee. For all that do such things, and all that do unrighteously, are abomination unto the Lord thy God.” “Thou shalt not oppress an hired servant that is poor and needy, whether he be of thy brethren, or of they strangers that are in they land within they gates; at his day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it; for he is poor, and setteth his heart upon it; lest he cry against thee unto the Lord, and it be sin unto thee…. Thou shalt not pervert the judgment of the stranger nor of the fatherless; nor take a widow’s raiment to pledge… When thou cutest down thine harvest in they field, and hast forgot a sheaf in the field, thou shalt not go again to fetch it; it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow; that the Lord thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hands. When thou beatest thine olive tree, thou shalt not go over the boughs again; it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow. When thou gatherest the grapes of the vineyard, thou shalt not glean it afterward; for it shall be for the stranger, for the fatherless, and for the widow.”


In the smallest as well as the largest affairs of life the first question should be, “What is God’s will?”


In every action of life the true Christian is just what he desires those around him to think he is. He is guided by truth and uprightness. He does not scheme; therefore he has nothing to gloss over. He may be criticized, he may be tested; but through all, his unbending integrity shines out like pure gold. He is a friend and benefactor to all connected with him; and his fellowmen place confidence in him, for he is trustworthy. Does he employ laborers to gather in his harvest? He does not keep back their hard-earned money. Has he means for which he has no immediate use? He relieves the necessities of his less fortunate brother. He does not seek to enlarge his possessions by taking advantage of the untoward circumstances of his neighbor. He accepts only a fair price for that which he sells. If there are defeats in the articles sold, he frankly tells the buyer, even tho by so doing he may seem to work against his own pecuniary interests.  


A man may not have a pleasant exterior; but if he has a reputation for straightforward, honest dealing, he is respected. Stern integrity covers many unpleasant traits of character. A man who steadfastly adheres to the truth wins the confidence of all. Not only do Christians trust him; worldlings are constrained to acknowledge the worth of his character.


Satan knows full well what a power for good is the life of a man of unbending integrity, and he puts forth zealous efforts to prevent men from living such lives. He comes to them with alluring temptations, promising them wealth, position, worldly honor, if they will but yield the principles of righteousness. And he has such success. Thousands yield to his bribery. The desire for wealth, for fame, for position, to too powerful for them to resist. Forgetting God, they withdraw their affection from Him, and worship mammon.


From the sad history of many who have failed we learn the danger of prosperity. It is not those who have lost their property who are in the greatest danger, but those who have obtained a fortune. Adversity may depress, but prosperity frequently elevates to presumption. Prayer is often required for men and women in affliction; and this is right. But those in prosperity are more in need of the prayers of God’s servants; for they are in greater danger of losing salvation. In the valley of humiliation men walk securely while they reverence God and make Him their trust. On the lofty pinnacle, where praise is heard, they need the help of special power from above.


True Religion…is an actual imitation of Christ.


Seeing the fearful danger of love of gain, Paul writes: “They that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all-evil; which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. …Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; that they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.”


The temptation comes to a man to pursue a wrong course for the sake of gaining money. He yields, and commits himself to that which the Lords cannot indorse. And daily the spiritual life of that man grows weaker. Daily he wanders farther from true happiness.


The sad story of Judas is a lesson for all, Judas was blessed with wonderful opportunities. He was with Christ during the entire period of the Savior’s ministry. Day by day for three years he listened to His instruction and witnessed His marvelous works. Had he been willing to renounce all selfishness, the Lord would have used him to advance His kingdom. But Judas loved gain. He was a speculator. He though he could manage the fiancés of the church, and so make money. Stronger and stronger grew his covetousness, till at last he sold his Master for thirty pieces of silver.


How many today are like Judas betraying their Lord! How many are sacrificing principle for the sake of worldly gain! Thus they crucify Christ afresh, and put Him to open shame.


Those in prosperity are…in greater danger of losing salvation.


In the smallest as well as the largest affairs of life the first question should be, “What is God’s will?” “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.” Christ calls upon His children to rid themselves of all selfishness, all covetousness, and all impurity. “Come unto Me,” He says, “and I will give you rest.” Yield yourselves to My training, Submit your will to My will, your way to My way. Let your life be one with My life. So shall you gain treasure that will endure unto life eternal.


True religion is not an experiment. It is an actual imitation of Christ. God keeps a personal account with every man, testing him by the practical results of his work. Soon will be heard the call, “Give an account of thy stewardship.” 


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