April 11, 2016

Truths That Transform: Honest Scales and Measures

The Lord detests dishonest scales,
but accurate weights find favor with him.
— Proverbs 11:1

It’s tax time again. Perhaps no season better reveals our level of trust in God for our provision. Perhaps no season more regularly challenges our integrity as we consider what to report, what deductions to take, how to account for various financial dealings. Complexities of the tax code and our opinions of how the government uses that money aside, the heart question involved is whether we will place the same value on our integrity that God does.

We’ve said many times that our finances are a reflection of our character and of our relationship with God. They may reflect wholehearted integrity, or they may reflect other priorities – like those of Ananias and Sapphira. Acts 5:1-11 tells the story of this couple who conspired to deceive the church regarding their giving. Having seen the example of others like Barnabas, who sold possessions and brought the money to the apostles – and no doubt wanting to be thought of as generous and giving – Ananias and Sapphira sold a field and brought part of the money to the apostles, keeping part of it back for themselves.

Peter makes clear that the problem wasn’t that they kept part of the money; the problem was that they lied to God and to the church about it (verses 3-4). This was a turning point in early church history – how important would integrity and character be in this new community? God provided a quick answer, striking dead first Ananias and then Sapphira. In the context of unprecedented outpourings of grace, miracles, and salvation, God showed just how much integrity meant (and means!) to him. The result – a holy fear of God swept through the church (verse 11).

Dishonesty angers God and harms his reputation both within the church and beyond her walls. It can come from failure to trust God to provide for our needs; or it can come from a concern about the opinions of men over that of God.

But integrity brings honor to God and shows a watching world the difference that God makes in a life. And even when no one else is looking, our God knows the hidden motives of our hearts and the results in our actions. He rejoices when our trust in him causes us to be people of truth and integrity when it comes to our finances. He expects us to treat others honestly and fairly in all our dealings.

Where are you on the integrity scale? We all encounter times when we’re tempted to be less than fully honest in our financial dealings. What are the situations that tempt you most? Give those over to God in prayer. “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil” (Matthew 6:13).

Good Sense Movement Team
Good Sense Movement
Transforming Finances! Transforming Lives!