Background: Matthew 28:1-15

Key Verses: And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, “Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ Matthew 28:12-13 ESV

Summary

If you saw something amazing happen, how would you react? Would you run and tell? Would you keep to yourself? Would you hide if you were afraid? Would you lie about what you saw if someone asked you to hide the truth?

Jesus was crucified and buried, but on the dawning of the first day, Sunday, a great earthquake occurred. When it occurred, women were on their way to Jesus’s tomb to anoint his body with spices, and an angel descended from heaven, rolled the stone away, and sat upon it. The guards who were there became “like dead men”. When the women arrived, the angel told them that Jesus was not there because he had risen. The angel directed the women to go and tell his disciples. With haste, they left to tell as they were told. At the same time, guardsmen went back into the city to tell the chief priests what happened, but the chief priests could not let this story circulate.  Jesus said he would rise again in three days. How would this look? They decided that they would perpetrate a lie instead. Thus, they gave the guardsmen money and told them to go tell people that Jesus’s disciples had stolen his body while they slept. After receiving the money, the guardsmen spread the story, and even today, the same story is being told.

Discussion Questions

  1. What is the definition of integrity? Can you share an example?

  2. If you were a guardsman, how would you have reacted when you saw what happened?

  3. Do you think the guardsman wanted to tell the truth about what happened before they were offered money? Why or why not?

  4. Why did the chief priests ask the guardsmen to not tell the truth?

  5. How does it feel when you know the truth, but you do not feel you can share it? Should you share it anyway?

  6. Are we held accountable for not telling the truth or perpetuating a lie when we know the truth?

  7. It is thousands of years later and the same false story is told. How do you think it has affected people?

  8. How do you feel when you find out someone has not been truthful? Give an example.

  9. Why is it important for us as people to show integrity?

  10. How does it affect you if people do not think you have integrity?

  11. What lesson did you learn that you will apply to your life?

What Does the Bible Say about Integrity?

  1. Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out. Proverbs 10:9 ESV

  2. The integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them. Proverbs 11:3 ESV

  3. Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully are his delight. Proverbs 12:22 ESV

Life Application

  1. How you react to the truth can tell people who you are as a person.

  2. One omission of truth can lead to long-term hurt.

  3. If you cannot maintain your position without hiding the truth, then you should not hold that position.

  4. Ultimately, your failure, to tell the truth, will lead to your destruction and in some cases eternal destruction.

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