Week 8- Man of Integrity II

 MONDAY — Read the passage with your team. 

   24 “Teach me, and I will be quiet; show me where I have been wrong. 25 How painful are honest words!  But what do your arguments prove? 26 Do you mean to correct what I say, and treat the words of a despairing man as wind? 27 You would even cast lots for the fatherless and barter away your friend.”

   28 “But now be so kind as to look at me.  Would I lie to your face? 29 Relent, do not be unjust; reconsider, for my integrity is at stake. 30 Is there any wickedness on my lips? Can my mouth not discern malice?”

Job 6:24-30

   1 And Job continued his discourse:  2 “As surely as God lives, who has denied me justice, the Almighty, who has made me taste bitterness of soul, 3 as long as I have life within me, the breath of God in my nostrils, 4 my lips will not speak wickedness, and my tongue will utter no deceit. 5 I will never admit you are in the right; till I die, I will not deny my integrity. 6 I will maintain my righteousness and never let go of it; my conscience will not reproach me as long as I live.  

Job 27:1-6

What does this passage have to say about integrity?

Why is that important?

TUESDAY — Discuss the passage with your team.

1) In these passages Job is responding to his friends, who have told him that God is bringing turmoil upon him because of his own sin.  What does he plead (Job 6:29)?  What does he refuse to admit (Job 27:5)?  What does Job mean when he says that his “integrity is at stake”?

2) Throughout the book of Job, we see that God affirms Job’s integrity; the judgments of his friends are proved wrong.  Why were his friends unable to rightly judge Job’s heart?  Who can see and judge a person’s heart?

WEDNESDAY — Discuss the passage with your team.

“ 14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin.  15 I do not understand what I do.  For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.  16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.  17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is the sin living in me.  18 I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.  For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.  19 For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do — this I keep on doing.  20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is the sin living in me that does it.”  — Romans 7:14-20

3) Do you ever feel deep regret over the sins that you have committed, yet struggle to break those same habits that you “don’t want to do”?  According to this passage, what causes a person to sin (v. 17-18)?  Does a person’s sin make that person ungodly?  Do Christians sin?

4) According to what standard is integrity measured?  (Remember that we are understanding integrity as “living a life worthy of the calling”.  What makes a person worthy?)  Does a person have integrity because of the worthiness of his actions (because he measures up to a standard)?  And if we understand integrity in that way, what happens when that person sins?  Does integrity mean “living a life without any sin”?

5) If you believe the truth of Ephesians 4 (that you are “made new” and given a “new self” and can freely accept Christ’s righteousness and holiness in place of your own sinful nature), shouldn’t you be eager to admit your faults and embrace Christ?  Why do so many people try to hide their shortcomings from others?  How is shame a barrier to your own pursuit of integrity?

THURSDAY — Discuss the passage with your team.

6) Have others ever questioned your integrity, and how did you respond?  Does your response reflect the attitude of a person who desires to live with integrity (Job 6:24)?  Though the honest words of others can be painful (v. 25), what purpose can they serve?

7) If only God can know and judge a person’s heart, is there ever a legitimate reason to confront a teammate about matters of integrity?  What should be your purpose, when doing so?  (Look back to Week 4.  In order to help a teammate grow from infancy to integrity, how should you speak the truth, according to Ephesians 4:15?)

FRIDAY — Discuss sport applications of integrity, and pray together.

· Ask your athletes to briefly reflect on what they’ve learned about integrity this week, and to repeat some of those things.  (Remind them of some of the Biblical truths about integrity you’ve discussed, if necessary.)

· Ask your team, “Based on what we learned about integrity this week...What does an athlete of integrity do?”  Do not settle for vague answers; challenge your athletes to go beyond general qualities of an athlete of integrity, and to determine what those qualities look like in action.

· Add the results to your team’s list of descriptions of the “athlete of integrity”, and be sure the list is displayed somewhere that is constantly visible, as a reminder to the team.

· Pray together as a team.  Encourage your athletes to pray for your team’s growth in regard to the discipline of integrity — especially in relation to some of the issues and challenges that you discussed together this week.  Challenge them to also ask for forgiveness, when applicable.  Give time for athletes to request prayer (regarding integrity or anything else), and pray together.

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