“Lie with me.” Day by day Potiphar’s wife attempted to seduce Joseph into sleeping with her. Each time he refused. One day as he ran from her, he left his garment in her hand (Genesis 39). The next scene unfolds with Joseph in prison. His reputation was destroyed. Even the prisoners probably thought Joseph had to be a low life to force Potiphar’s wife to sleep with him. All signs pointed that he was guilty. But we know the other side of the story. Joseph was a man of character even if his reputation was tainted. On the other hand, Potiphar’s wife’s character was rotten even though her reputation was that of an innocent fragile woman that had been raped. A good reputation does not always equate good Character. Matter of fact, most men and women of God have a bad reputation. Jesus had flawless character but yet His reputation was tainted by the Pharasees and Sadducees. One of the many examples is found in Matthew 12: 1,2. “At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day.” The Pharasees went to great lengths to create a perfect reputation. They had a reputation of being holy and pious but yet their character was so rotten. Jesus called them a bunch of hypocrites (Matthew 23). We can become so engrossed in how people view us, that if we are not careful our decisions are based upon how we want people to perceive us rather than our character. John Wooden once said, “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.” May God help our decisions be motivated by the character of Christ rather than creating a spotless reputation.
Keep on the firing line,