Integrity of Mouth

John Danganan


Malachi 2:5-7, “My covenant with him [Levi] was one of life and peace, and I gave them to him. It was a covenant of fear and he feared me. He stood in awe of my name. True instruction was in his mouth, and no wrong was found on his lips. He walked with me in peace and uprightness, and he turned many from iniquity. For the lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and the people should seek instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts.


Yahweh is a covenant keeping God and He expects his people to be covenant keeping people. In this first of six disputes between God and his people, God reminds the people of how the priests have broken the original covenant. The covenant with Levi and his tribe of priests consist of life, peace and a fear of the the Lord that lead to a life of integrity. The common understanding of integrity is who you are and what you do when no one is looking. Yet God describes Levi’s integrity primarily based on his mouth in that “no wrong was found on his lips”. Because Levi feared the Lord and stood in awe of his name, he guarded his mouth as the messenger of God. Everything starts with leadership and before God was judging Israel as a nation he first starts with the leadership of the priests.


On a scale from one to ten how is my integrity in the fear of the Lord? As a messenger of God, am I guarding my mouth against lies, gossip, slander, empty talk, exaggeration? I think James exhortation is appropriate (James 3:1-2): Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways, And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man (mature), able also to bridle his whole body.


Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the grace that is found in your son, Jesus. Please forgive me for not having the fear and integrity to guard against my mouth? I repent from empty talk, lies, gossip and slander. I fear you and stand in awe of who you are. Amen.

Devotions for October 15

Nehemiah 13
Malachi 1,2
Acts 4

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