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September 25, 2019

The God Hunt – A 40 Day Soul Safari, Day 31

“May the God of peace make you holy through and through. May you be kept in soul and mind and body in spotless integrity until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is utterly faithful and He will finish what He has set out to do.” 1 Thessalonians 5:23 (Phillips NT)

This is a powerful prayer the Apostle Paul prayed over the church in Thessalonica. In the previous verse, he admonishes the church to “Stay away from every kind of evil.” 1 Thessalonians 5:22 (NLT) What a challenge!  As much as we may like to avoid every kind of evil, the truth is, we live in an evil age.  This is a sinful world.  So, how do you maintain integrity when evil exists all around you? The answer is found in Paul’s prayer.

“May the God of peace make you holy through and through. May you be kept in soul and mind and body in spotless integrity until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is utterly faithful and He will finish what He has set out to do.” 1 Thessalonians 5:23 (Phillips NT)

Holiness is not something we can manufacture. Only in Christ are we clothed with His righteousness that makes us holy. When Paul prays, “May you be kept in soul and mind and body in spotless integrity until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ,” he is not referring so much to three distinct parts of our lives but to our entire being. It’s another way of saying that God must be involved in every aspect of our lives.  Only then can we be kept in spotless integrity.

The word integrity literally means undivided or wholeness, completeness.  But the problem is, many times we divide our lives into compartments.  We act one way with one group of friends and another way with another group of friends.  We have one image at work, and we act another way at home with our family.  We divide our lives, compartmentalize our lives, and God says: “I want you to integrate your whole life so that what you see is what you get; that your private life matches your public image; that you’re complete from the inside out and the outside in; that you’re genuine; that you’re real; not that you have it all together or that you’re perfect, but you are real and you’re honest.” That’s what integrity is all about. It’s about giving God your whole life – soul, mind and body.  Have you done that?  Or, does He just have a part of you?

Integrity is surrendering your whole being to the One who made you. When we do that, we can have the assurance that God is utterly faithful, and He will finish what He has set out to do!