Acts 27: 1-3
When it was decided that we would sail for Italy, Paul and some other prisoners were handed over to a centurion named Julius, who belonged to the Imperial Regiment. We boarded a ship from Adramyttium about to sail for ports along the coast of the province of Asia, and we put out to sea. Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica, was with us.
The next day we landed at Sidon; and Julius, in kindness to Paul, allowed him to go to his friends so they might provide for his needs.
2 Corinthians 1: 12
Now this is our boast: our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, with integrity and godly sincerity. We have done so, relying not on worldly wisdom but on God’s grace.
Julius remember is the Roman soldier, the centurion who is in charge of Paul and the other prisoners. He has one job – to make sure they get to Rome and don’t escape on the way. In fact, if a Roman soldier lost his prisoner back then, he would be put to death himself. That’s how serious his job was.
But look at what he does. He lets Paul go off and visit his friends.
Bear in mind he has known Paul for a total of 24 hours. And yet, even in that short time, he has figured out that Paul is a man who can be trusted, he is a man of character and integrity, you can depend on him, he will do what he says.
In a shallow, superficial world, we need people of depth, character and integrity. People we can literally trust with our lives. And we need to be those people for others. That we would be trustworthy in all we say and do.
Proverbs 12: 22 says:
“The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy.”
If you are a leader of any kind, your people must trust you or they won’t follow you. It doesn’t mean you have to be perfect – but if you continually show you can’t be trusted, that you lack character, you will very quickly lose the authority to lead them. We need leaders we can trust.
One writer said this:
The world needs leaders...
who cannot be bought;
whose word is their promise;
who put character above wealth;
who possess opinions and a will;
who are larger than their vocations;
who do not hesitate to take chances;
who will not lose their individuality in a crowd;
who will be honest in small things as well as in great things;
who will make no compromise with wrong;
whose ambitions are not confined to their own selfish desires;
who will not say they do it "because everybody else does it";
who are true to their friends through good report and
in adversity as well as in prosperity;
who do not believe that shrewdness, cunning, and
hardheadedness are the best qualities for winning success;
who are not ashamed or afraid to stand for the truth when it is unpopular,
who can say no with emphasis, although the rest of the world says yes.