Declare me innocent, O LORD, for I have acted with integrity; I have trusted in the LORD without wavering.
~Psalm 26:1, NLT
Only by living openly before the LORD can any person avoid hypocrisy and duplicity.
The importance of living a life of personal integrity cannot be overstated. The word integrity means to be integrated, complete, together or sound. The word is used to describe Job’s character. This O.T. word comes from the carpenter or the potter’s shop and the lathe. When you are turning something on lathe, you want to avoid checks or cracks. A vessel of integrity has no cracks or checks. Job was much closer than most, but no mere human has perfect integrity. David had some flaws but he was not duplicitous. He did not say one thing and do another. He did not lie. If he gave you his word on a matter, it was good. In Psalm 26, he invites the LORD to examine his heart and his motives. David did not attempt to keep anything from the LORD.
I’m sure the first thing that pops in your mind is his affair with Bathsheba which was some 15 years prior to the writing of this Psalm. David did have a moral lapse as do most of us but he learned from his experience. Those who knew him best understood his motivation: he wanted God to get glory. David had no hidden agenda. David loves corporate worship: he loved to go to the Tabernacle and be among the congregation of the righteous but unfortunately for David, there were some wolves there dressed in sheep’s clothing. These people not only pretended to be worshipers, they pretended to be David’s friend. Yet it was these very folks who were slandering David’s name and plotting with his enemies. These people were using “Religion” as a cover. There main purpose was to bring David down; to destroy him. We have the advantage of looking back at the history of this event and we know that David’s reign was preserved by the grace of God. Absalom’s rebellion failed in the end but I don’t think David ever fully recovered. I think this event not only humbled the king, I think it broke his heart. A lot of people wanted David dead and that included family and so-called friends. It is hard to recover from such betrayal.
David made a lot of mistakes but he was no hypocrite. He put his faith in the LORD and the LORD vindicated him. Just remember this: the fact that your heart is right and that you are seeking God’s glory does not mean that you will not have enemies, or be hated and despised as was David. Keep in mind that Jesus was despised and rejected by men. So don’t be shocked when it happens to you.
We have a lot of sick folks and some I should have mentioned before now. Continue to pray for Fuzz and Larry: both need our prayers. Also, Mrs. Nell Brown is in DGH. Cecil Linderman has also been sick and in the hospital but he got to go home Sunday evening. Vickie Livingston is in Cullman Regional. Bro. Ronald Manley’s son Jamie is also in Decatur General.