Many people ask, what is integrity? It means a person is the same on the inside as he or she claims to be on the outside. A man of integrity can be trusted. He is the same person alone in a hotel room a thousand miles from home as he is at work or in his community or with his family.
We have seen the tragic results of moral breakdown and shattered trust in people – from leaders in business and government to well-known sports figures, to husbands, wives, and families and, yes, even the church. The erosion of basic moral and spiritual values seems to be getting more serious at every level of society. We are waking up to the fact that we are paying a terrible price for corruption in government and business – all testify that something is wrong. It’s easy to point the finger at prominent people accused of corruption. We can easily see their sins and the results. But a careful look reveals that the same poison of self-gratification and greed exists in our hearts as well.
We all make decisions based on what we truly believe. Many people today wonder if there is absolute truth. They say there is only perspective, that truth is whatever you perceive it to be; whatever works for you. If that is the case, then there is no right or wrong, only differing opinions, and one is as good as another. But God’s standard is expressed in the Bible, and the ultimate example of that standard is Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32). When we live by the truth, we possess integrity.
Unless moral and spiritual values are strengthened, the free way of life we have known in the modern world may be in danger. The problem can be solved if enough people are willing to commit themselves to being part of the process, and taking one step at a time in the right direction. I believe integrity can be restored to a society one person at a time. The choice belongs to each of us.
From Billy Graham: God’s Ambassador (1999, BGEA)