Every true, “red-blooded,” born-again Christian is a saint – a person who has been washed in the blood of Christ, and set apart to do the works and will of God the Father.

We become saints, or Christians, as a result of our belief, faith and acceptance of Jesus Christ as the Son of God, who, out of his great love for humanity, died on the cross so believers could have eternal life.

You cannot be a saint of God unless you are a Christian, and you cannot be a Christian unless you are a saint. To be a Christian or a saint, you must be saved, sanctified and filled with the Holy Ghost.

As Christians or saints of God, we are required to have a good relationship with God, Jesus, the Holy Ghost and one another.

Our relationship with the Trinity and with one another must be grounded in obedience to God’s two great commandments: to love him and to love our neighbors as ourselves.

It is through our born-again love, our new-creature love, our sanctified love that solidifies our spiritual relationships, and provides us with the integrity to permit our lights to shine in such a way that others will lose their spiritual blindness, and share in our testimonies as saints of God – a testimony that manifests in our lostness, translating our spiritual lives into foundness, and our blindness into perfect 20/20 spiritual vision.

We were all once lost in our own humanitarian integrity and blinded to following the path of the one who said, “I am the Way,” and hooked on our own understanding as we stumbled and fell from day to day.

In accepting Christ as the way, the truth and the life, our character became revolutionized. Like David said in Psalms 26:11, we can also say: “But as for me, I will walk in mine integrity: redeem me, and be merciful unto me.”

What do we mean by integrity? Webster defines integrity as, “uncompromising adherence to moral and ethical principles: soundness of moral character; honesty.”

Our soundness of moral character, our soundness of honesty and our soundness of ethical principles ought to be soundly rooted and grounded in the Word of God, and especially the commandments of God.

The unsaved souls of the world ought to know who we are and whose we are by the way we walk, talk and live.

In his second letter to the Corinthians, the Apostle Paul lets the saints in Corinth know they didn’t have to worry about the proper handling of their gifts for the ministry of Jesus Christ, because he and his co-workers adhered to honesty.

Your tithes and your offerings will be handled with integrity and honesty. They will be spent for the purposes in which you gave them to us. In 2 Corinthians 8:21, Paul said, “We are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord, but also in the eyes of men.”

To have an uncompromising adherence to God’s Word, and to be clothed in one’s right mind, Paul reminded the Philippian church in Philippians 4:8 that it was necessary for them to adhere to, “whatever is right, noble, pure, lovely, admirable, and if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.”

As Christians, we have compromised our walk and spiritual integrity. If we expect our prayers to be answered, our nation to be healed, our schools to be transformed, we must first examine our hearts and align our thoughts and ways with the thoughts and ways of God, and watch him bring about revolutionary changes in our homes, communities, nation and world.

The Biblical virtue of integrity points to a consistency between what is in our hearts, our beliefs and behavior, our words and our ways, our attitudes and our actions, our virtues and our values, our positions and our practices.

In all that we do, the Bible teaches us to have an uncompromising adherence to good moral character, to honesty and ethical principles, and to integrity.

Today’s Insights was written by the Rev. Ken Gavin, pastor emeritus of Second Baptist Church in Benton Harbor. Insights is written by area clergy to give different viewpoints on a variety of topics. It is published each Saturday in cooperation with the Berrien County Association of Churches. The views expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of member churches.