Truth and Integrity

Cost of Discipleship

Scott StephanOctober 22, 2023

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Passage: Matthew 5:21

Truth and Integrity Summary

  • Jesus says his followers should not swear oaths - let your "yes" be yes and your "no" be no.
  • Oaths were often used as clever ways to lie in Jesus' day. He abolished the distinction between words that must be true and don't have to be.
  • Getting rid of oaths is an easy application, but Jesus is really calling us to be fully truthful and credible in all we say.
  • Outright lies obviously undermine credibility. But truth-telling needs to be our consistent pattern for trust to build.
  • In an age of misinformation and "alternative facts," disciples should stand out as reliable, honest witnesses.
  • Beyond just truth-telling, Jesus' words also point to integrity - following through and doing what we say we'll do.
  • Our "yes" and "no" should be dependable. When we don't follow through, it takes time to rebuild trust and integrity.
  • God himself is fully reliable, trustworthy and keeps all his promises. We can anchor to him.

Discussion Questions:

  1. When have you seen oaths or swearing used in merely superficial or misleading ways?
  2. Why do you think truth and honesty matter so much to God? How have lies impacted relationships in your life?
  3. In what ways have you seen trust in leaders, institutions, etc. erode in recent years? How should this push Christ-followers towards greater integrity?
  4. What causes the gap between our good intentions and actually following through with what we say we'll do?
  5. How can our community encourage each other in keeping our word and strengthening reliability? What helps you follow through?
  6. How does God's complete faithfulness and promise-keeping inspire you to be true to your word?
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