In verses Genesis: 29-30, Joseph’s oldest brother, Reuben, panicked. “When Reuben returned to the cistern and saw that Joseph was not there, he tore his clothes. He went back to his brothers and said, ‘The boy isn’t there! Where can I turn now?’” Why do you suppose that Reuben panicked? Because Reuben knew that as the oldest brother, his Father would blame him for Joseph’s disappearance. Bible historians and commentary writers both agree that Reuben’s true motive for protecting Joseph stemmed from a concern for himself and not a concern for Joseph.
The panic and the concern was all about Reuben saving face so that his father, Jacob, would not lower the boom.
Here is a question that must be asked. If Reuben was all that concerned about Joseph, why didn't Reuben go after him? Reuben could have easily chased down the caravan that held Joseph captive, but instead, Reuben silently blended in with his brothers, and refused to stand up for what was right.
Reuben proved to have no integrity.
What is the big deal about integrity? Well, I am so glad that you asked. Integrity brings about consistency. Integrity is nothing more than doing the right thing all of the time. Integrity is consistent rightness as God defines right. How consistent are you? When no one is around … Are you the same person at home that you are here at church? Are you the same person at work that you are at home? Are you the same person on Monday morning that you are when you are teaching your Sunday School Class? Are you the same person on Tuesday Morning that you are in Board Meeting? Are you the same person on Thursday Morning that you are when you sing in the Praise Team or take up the offering or greet our visitors?
Yes you are and I say praise God because He is at work in our lives.
I am intrigued by Proverbs 11:3 that says, “The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity or (two-faced living).”
Here is the truth! We as a church are positioned for growth. The state of our church is this: GOD IS ON THE MOVE! Jesus has risen from the dead just as He said and our consistent lives … our lives of non-duplicity … are proof that the tomb is empty. Your consistency makes the future so bright that all of us must wear shades. Your determination to not live double lives paints us purple so that we can stand out in the midst of other brown cows.
However, what must be done to maintain this God given atmosphere?