QUESTION #1: One of the prime examples of a life of integrity in the Bible is the story of Joseph. What could today’s leaders learn from him?
“I would say that when I was a young boy, I admired Joseph and Daniel, who we’re not going to talk about right now, but another young man in position of authority, government, who stood above their peers and as young men did the job of a mature, older man. Confronted with great temptation, they stood tall. Now in the case of Joseph here, these are the things I see about Joseph that if applied by those in office, and I’ll put it to anybody, anybody in a position of authority, anybody, life would change, meaning this.
What did Joseph have? Well, number one, Joseph understood that God put him where he was. He didn’t choose to go to Egypt. He was sold as a slave. Later, we know when he confronted his brothers after he had been exalted to positions of leadership, he said, “What you did, you meant for evil, but God meant it for good.” Joseph understood who God was. We’ve covered it on this program. I think back on the June 16th program, we talked about the necessity of understanding the nature and the role of God. Joseph understood that, that he was there because God put him there, so he was not bitter. He was there, he knew he had a purpose and God designed it, number one.
Number two, he understood … The second point, we said, I think, on June 30th, understand the nature of man. Joseph understood sin. He knew his own personal frailties and he knew that God was not pleased with sin, so when presented by Potiphar’s wife to sin with her in adultery, Joseph’s response was, “I cannot.” I cannot what? “I cannot sin …” because he understood sin, “… against God.” That was the second thing. He understood right and wrong in regards to sin.
He also understood, because we know that, he understood accountability. He understood that he was ultimately accountable to God and then accountable to men, Potiphar, the guy who he worked for, because he said, “He’s put me in charge of his entire household. I have a duty and responsibility to do what he’s asked me to do.” He had honor, and he recognized that accountability principle, which is missing in the political realm today.
One, there is a responsibility to the people. That’s what the constitutional oath is all about, but ultimately, there’s accountability to God for doing what is right. That’s what Joseph had. When he put all of these pieces together, Joseph was able to be defined as a person of integrity. God looked at his heart and God ultimately raised him to vice president of Egypt. I think that’s extraordinary, but he understood these very basic things that our founders did and we talk about on this program. People need to understand, those in the pulpit, those in the pew, those in office.”
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