Danny* works for a large trading company in Hong Kong. While visiting the factory of a potential supplier, he expressed concern about whether the factory could meet the standards needed to produce his company’s products. Later, at dinner, the factory manager gave Danny an envelope. Inside, Danny found a bribe amounting to tens of thousands of dollars in cash—the equivalent of his annual salary.
● Danny’s experience is far from unique. Around the world, the scope and pervasiveness of dishonesty is staggering. For example, court documents show that between 2001 and 2007, a large German industrial firm paid 1.4 billion dollars in bribes to obtain contracts.
Although recent high-profile corporate scandals have led to some reforms, the overall situation appears to be worsening. A 2010 study by Transparency International found that worldwide, “levels of corruption have increased in the past three years.”
Why is there so much dishonesty? Is it practical to be honest? If so, how is it possible? Can the Bible help us?
Some names in this series have been changed.