STUDIES & DOC
Be You Perfect, really?
By Your servant Dan L Baxley
This is something I have struggled with my whole life as I have tried to walk the walk. I once lived as a Jew, walking in the customs and honoring the festivals and Sabbaths, rules, regulations -- the LAW. At one point even thinking I was of Jewish extraction. Convinced I had found my roots only to discover that I truly had not idea. I worked at being perfect, as commanded by our Savior, YaHshua.
(Mat 5:48) Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
"Be you perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect", is a statement that used to rattle me as found that on my best day I was still a faulty, flesh and blood, fool. So, I ignored it for the longest time, I was challenged, at times, to explain it, but try as I might I could not -- well -- I could, sort of, but not with any real satisfaction. Then one day I discovered the answer, a faith based answer as applied by the Words or our God -- and it troubled me no more. The principle of "rightly dividing the word of truth" backed by unquestioned faith delivers the answer, once and for all. Please, however, read to the very end of this article -- or -- jump to the very last part and then come back and read the rest, believe me, I believe in the love of YaHshua, and He in us we can see what it means to be "perfect", in Him -- YaHshua in us.
I was also spurred, challenged even, by someone close to me to answer this question. I had had a discussion with others about this very subject but it did not matter to me, so much, if what I said was accepted, or not. I would try to stay away from this idea because I knew from my own experiences that I was not perfect, far from it, and being in denial I would not look at this seriously. But when a particular individual challenged me on this, and I found myself unable to break through what I could plainly see, or what seemed to me to be correct, I decided it was time to put it in writing. I pray this will be of help and a benefit to any that read this. Your comments are always welcome. So, with that said, let's get started. Also, as I began and ended this study, both sides of this truth came to me. I pray you will find this beneficial and of use to you in you walk with Him, our Savior YaHshua. Remember, the studies presented here are never the final word. We adjust to the truth as it is revealed to us.
In this matter of "perfection" we need to consider a few things first. We need to see that there are different meanings and levels of what is seen as "being perfect" and is not so clearly defined as we may imagine. The sample prayer our Lord YaHshua demonstrated for His disciples is very revealing.
In Our Lord's Prayer:
Let's have a look at our Lord's Prayer, which is actually the "Disciples prayer" and is a "sample" prayer our Lord YaHshua was giving to the disciples, as an example of how to pray - this is the answer to the question they posed, asking, "...master, teach us to pray...". Still, the words of this sample pray are telling and revealing when we consider the command to "be perfect".
(Luke 11:4)"And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil". KJV
Our Father does not lead us into temptations. This is another example of the KJV rendering scripture incorrectly. Another proof the KJV is no more inspired than any other version -- "Let us not be led into temptation", would have a better understanding and this ties into the last part of this verse very nicely when restored to , "...deliver us from evil...". Let's compare this with another translation --
(Luke 11:4) Forgive our sins, as we forgive everyone who has done wrong to us. And keep us from being tempted.' " CEV
Here our Lord YaHshua is telling us how to pray in requesting our "sins" be forgiven", wouldn't this indicate that believers, are not perfect. Some are troubled at not being able to reach perfection, as I was and had been for years and finally gave up, seeing that it is actually an impossible task. This is how we are to pray? If any of us can reach perfection "as our Father in Heaven" then how are we to interpret this prayer from our Lord, YaHshua? This prayer should prove, by itself that the believer has not reached perfection and is still seen as a sinner asking for forgiveness. If perfection from sin were possible this prayer could not be correct, the words of our Savior would be wrong or misleading at best, and a contradiction of what He had already said from a previous time.
(Mat 5:48) Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
There you have it, a command to be "perfect " like God, our Father in Heaven! Wow, now that is a command, but wait, no man can be perfect, let alone, perfect "... as our Father which is in heaven is perfect". How can this be?
The answer is simple really, it is a matter of faith -- believing your Salvation is sure. You say you don't doubt your salvation, but are troubled by a few scriptures of truth that seem to challenge your security, or rather, my security. To be continually plagued by this seemingly straight-forward command, to "be perfect" (Mat 5:48), can cause one (I speak of myself) to question their own faith or to question whether you (I myself) have the Holy Spirit or not! I have attempted to settled this for myself, by ignoring it. Still the verse, the plain statement in Matthew 5 keeps placing doubt in my mind and I have to think, into the minds of other believers, too? Some ignore it, as I have, knowing in their heart, this is an impossible command. In my journey I attempted the impossible, I tried to climbe that mountain, and failed as I discovered the Law of Moses to be a strict and unforgiving master. Others are satisfied with their imperfection in the flesh and do not concern themselves with a command to be perfect. So, this article is for those new to the faith, not having answered this question of, the impossible command. But mostly it is for those who have traveled or may be traveling the path of righteousness withing the confines of the Law of Moses, and then on top of this they have this command from our Savior, YaHshua, to be "perfect even as our Father in Heaven". For me, the knock our punch -- how could I ever attain this kind of perfection when I could not find it in the keeping of the Law?
There is a multitude of scripture suggesting this is not a command as is supposed. Okay, it is but not a command as we might suppose. There is a principle of "rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim 2:15), which I will cover in more detail later, but the question of being perfect or else, needs to be answered first. If we are to be perfect, and if we are not able to be perfect, what then, no spirit, no salvation? There must be an answer to this dilemma of being an imperfect being, living in an imperfect world, commanded to do the impossible?
(1Jn 1:5-10) This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare to you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of YaHshua the Christ His Son cleans us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and his word is not in us.
After reading the verses above you will have your answer. To "... be you perfect ..." you must walk in the Light and the "...blood of YaHshua will cleanse us from all sin". Notice, especially the last part, "If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and His word is not in us" -- His WORD is not in us, if we say we are perfect -- what is perfection if not sinless? The answer to this is that the perfection is in Him, not us, and to come into real perfection we must accept YaHshua as our Savior, and take in His word, rely on His Word, believed His Word and be willing to confess we are sinners and have come short of His Glory. Walking in this light is to see things as they really are as revealed by His Words. The light of the Word of YaHshua lives in us, His Spirit and that of our Heavenly Father lives in us and that is where the "perfection" is. Our perfection is found in accepting His Word as truth and confessing our sinful nature then He, YaHshua, covers our sinful nature before our Heavenly Father even sees it -- His blood is the veil, or curtain that hangs between us and the eyes of our Heavenly Father -- we have YaHshua to thank for that, so we can come boldly before our Father, in prayer, sinless in the perfection of YaHshua, though we are still in the flesh. By accepting YaHshua we come under His protection until the time of our "quickening", or change from this sinful, mortal, decaying body to a new spirit body fit to endure eternity -- born again -- HalleluYah.
What I have settled for myself does not seem to be the answer for others, however. It seems, almost, as if they don't want to hear the simple answer. They continue to be troubled by this command, to question, to doubt, or so it seems, as I once was. This statement, this command to "be perfect" is usually accompanied by another singular verse leading to further doubt; "If you sin you do not have the Holy Spirit". OK, OK, I give. All of you that wish to doubt your faith, so be it. As for me I wish to find the answer without doubt, without questioning the PROMISE of Salvation, even though I am a flawed creature of the flesh, I will believe our "perfection" is found in YaHshua not in ourselves.
(1Jn 4:15) Whosoever shall confess that YaHshua is the Son of God, God lives in him, and he in God.(1Jn 4:16) And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.(1Jn 4:17) Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.
My friends, no flesh can be perfect, it is impossible. Our very being is filthiness in the eyes of our God, but He has made a way clear for us to find Salvation, not of our own ability in becoming perfect (I am begin sarcastic), after all we are basically good, right? Wrong, (Mat 19:17) we are told that "none are good" and if none are good then who is perfect, or can become perfect? Still, our Savior did speak those words, "... be you perfect ..." so let's take another look. And we will also look at the business of being sinners, but first, let's be PERFECT!
Seems pretty plain, right, "be perfect", right? I'm wondering, how many times did our Lord say this? Yes, once, only one time. There is an instruction that we should "rightly divide the truth", and what do you suppose that means? Let me tell you, so you don't have to guess -- it means the truth needs dividing at times. Example: Satan comes to our Lord in the wilderness and tells Him, "Throw your self from this cliff, for it is written the angels will catch you" (I'm paraphrasing). Satan is quoting scripture, he is quoting the truth, what he is telling YaHshua, the Christ, is not a lie, but the Truth, Satan was quoting Scripture. So, does Yahshua throw Himself from the cliff to prove the word true? No, He does not, He "rightly divides the truth" (scripture) and tells His adversary, "It is also written you shall not tempt the Lord your GOD". Wham! Satan is finished, he has run up against someone that understands what it is to use the truth of the truth, rightly dividing -- truth for truth.
How does this apply to what we are looking at in being told to be "perfect"? Simple, we have numerous other scriptures of truth that tell us we are lost in the flesh, that we have a battle on our hands, a battle of the flesh as well as spiritually. So was YaHshua wrong? Absolutely not, but we have a clue that perhaps He was not speaking of "perfection" as we see it, as an instantaneous event. A better translation for the verse in question would be, "...become you perfect, as your Father in Heaven is perfect". This is, we see, a process of growth, leaving room for our imperfection while in the flesh. But wait, lets' take a look at this word, "perfect" –
Strong's #G5046: From G5056; complete (in various applications of labor, growth, mental and moral character, etc.); neuter (as noun, with G3588) completeness: - of full age, man, perfect.
Go back and read Matthew chapter 5, from the beginning and do you will see the instruction for becoming prefect? No, not perfect as we define perfect, the word, today, but to be complete, as originally meant, to labor, grow, mature, to become full of age -- and with age and maturity comes wisdom, etc.. The definition for what our Savior, YaHshua, was saying, is not exactly the same as we define the word today, and it should be common for the Believer to see that so long as we are in the flesh, that to attain perfection, is impossible. Only One has lived a physical life in perfection.
This is a goal that can only be accomplished through and by our Savior. The ultimate answer to "becoming perfect" is found in Him, our perfection in the Spirit will be by and through Him, otherwise we would not need Him. Get it? Do you see? If we can be perfect, and never ever sin, again, then why do we need a Savior?
Alright, if you are still with me, let's have another look at His statement, His command to be "perfect".
Mat 19:21 YaHshua said unto him, If you will be perfect, go and sell that you have, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.Luke 1:3 It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus,
Strong's G199 - Here is the word "perfect" again but not the same. This "Perfect" is to say, "diligently" (from G196 - "exactly"). This "perfection" is seen, again as having movement. Like moving diligently toward "understanding" of everything that had happened.
Luke 6:40 The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.
G2675 of Strong's -- Another word for "perfect". This verse works nicely with Mat 5:48 but this word is not the same. In the Greek it is -- To complete thoroughly, that is to repair, or adjust, fit, frame, men or to restore. To be "complete" and be like your Master, YaHshua
John 17:23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
G5048of Strong's -- Perfect in One: consecrate, finish, fulfill, to make. Notice, our Savior says, "to make perfect". Again we see a moving forward not of something completed. He prays that His followers go through a process of being made perfect which is found in the fact we are destined to become as He is and will be one with YaHshua and the Father as the Children. Thank YaHshua for that, for making it possible.
Rom 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
According to G5046, of Strong's Greek dictionary -- perfect will, would be "the complete" will of God"
Our Savior was not commanding us to be perfect as the world thinks of perfection, but to become perfect in the light of Biblical revelation, and by the spiritual guidance of the Holy Spirit.
SIN, Those having the Holy Spirit do not Sin!
John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send to you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceeds from the Father, he shall testify of me:
The Comforter, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth comes from the Father. No conditions -- a plain statement to the followers of YaHshua.
John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost (spirit), whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said to you. KJV
Now, if we are perfect we do not need to be taught, after all, what can you teach “perfection”? Oh, but wait, we are talking about not sinning when in fact we have the Holy Spirit as our Teacher. Please, I'm not trying to make light of this as it is a serious charge, and should be understood. Stay with me as I will demonstrate the kind of SIN by which we can know we, or others, do not have the Holy Spirit.
2Cor 5:5 Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. NIV(2Co 5:5) Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. KJV
(The word "earnest", is an old English term for "small payment". In a financial agreement you might put up some "earnest" money, or a small deposit to seal the deal, to demonstrate you are serious)
We have a small deposit as a guarantee, a promise of something bigger to come, a promise that cannot be broken. Do you see what we are being told? We do not have the fullness of the Holy Spirit, if we did then surely we could not sin or even be capable of sin, but we do not, we have a deposit, a down payment, and we are waiting the full payment to come. It is then we will be like Him for we will see Him as He is – why --Because, we will then be like Him, one with our Heavenly Father.
(Phil 3:21, 1 John 3:2)(Php 3:12) Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of the Christ YaHshua.(This super Apostle did not see himself as having attained perfection)Eph 1:13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, NIV
This is a promise, and to question this promise is to exercises a lack of faith and that, my friends, borders on doubting the Words of God. We are all guilty of that at times. Just admit it, the doubt creeps in because of something we have heard or a challenge we cannot answer. It is our job, as Believers, to admit our weakness and never give up the inner struggle to do right, to think right, to call on the Holy Spirit for that help we all need. We are marked, we are sealed and the proof is your recognition of your faults and you desire to overcome what the world sees as normal and acceptable – a little lie here a little adultery there and we forgive ourselves, after all, everyone does it, right?
Would He lie, would our Savior lie to us? Heaven forbid, we are the liars and the ones needing to be saved. No He is truthful in all things, and when we are told we are "sealed with the promise of the Holy Spirit" what do you suppose that means? First, we do not have the fullness of the Spirit, otherwise it would not be a "promise", we would not need the promise having already received the fullness of the Spirit. No, we are told, and it is revealed to us that we have a small bit, a down payment of the Holy Spirit, and it is this small piece of the Holy Spirit that seals us for the Promise of things to come. If anyone tries to tell you they are full of the Holy Spirit they are liars and the truth is not in them. They not only deceive you but themselves.
Col 1:26 The mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. NIV
Wow, the Christ in you, this is the mystery that had been kept hidden. The Holy Spirit is the Messiah, YaHshua, in you just as He prayed to the Father before His crucifixion. (John 17:21)
Gal 4:4-6 But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, "Abba, Father."
This is all well and good and I hope you get the point, once you have the seal of the Holy Spirit, which is the Messiah, or the Christ in you, you then have a direct pathway to the Father. The oneness of the Son and the Father is something we can participate in, be a part of.
(John 17:21)That they all may be one; as thou, Father,artin me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
Can you see this, the Son in the Father, the Father in the Son and that we may also be part of this Oneness having a share in their Holy Spirit? They are Holy, they are Spirit, and with this small piece of the Holy Spirit within us we are marked for greater things and to become a new creation even as YaHshua is – we will, one day, be like Him.
(1Jn 3:2) Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
This is what the author of the letter to the Hebrews meant when he said, "come boldly before the throne". In times past this was not allowed, only the High Priest could come before the Heavenly Throne and speak with God directly, and that was only once a year. Today, with YaHshua in us, that little bit of the Holy Spirit, we, as children can come before our Heavenly Father as individuals – as a child might innocently run to his or her father and grab hold of a leg or hop up into his lap – we have been given permission. Though we be a slobbering mess not worthy of His company, He has opened the way for us to be just that, His children. Our Eldest Brother has gone before us and is making the way clear, as our High Priest, as our defender, as our Heavenly Brother. As He, YaHshua, did not seek equality with the Father so we do not seek “equality” with Him. He, YaHshua, will always be first, the number one standing next to our Heavenly Father – none the less, we are called to be His Children. So long as we are still flesh and blood we cannot be worthy or sinless, only He came make us clean and only through YaHshua is our sinful nature covered.
What about the sin, not the nature of flesh but when we commit sin? YaHshua has us covered making our voice of repentance heard, which is to say we are sorry and will try not to sin again, but even more than this. Literally, by His Blood our Sins are covered to be remembered no more. This, however, is not to say "willful sin" is covered, as that is something different altogether.
Rom 6:5-10 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.Rom 6:11-12 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through YaHshua the Christ our Lord. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
We are dead to sin through Him and should strive not to serve sin. Now, to serve sin is another thing again, that is to sin willfully. We are not concerned with the world view of what sin is or is not. Once the Church of Europe defined sin as not agreeing with the church, the church fathers many who were staying true to our Savior were sentenced to death at the burning stake for following the Word of God instead of the words of men.
The type of sin we are speaking of is something that is planned. As an example: Someone claims to be a brother while plotting to kill his wife, or to steal from his employer, or from the Church. There is forethought and malaise -- it is not a fall or a slip followed by repentance when recognized – it is not a slip up but deliberate. This then is not a true brother or a sister but a person of the world. Only a truly repentant heart can deliver such a person from their evil. Willful sin is excused, forgiven, and in fact all sin is forgivable except for the sin against the Holy Spirit.
(Mat 12:31-32) And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
Ultimately it is only our Savior and our Heavenly Father that knows the truly repentant heart. When someone in great authority sins against the congregation of God by adultery, theft, lying, or whatever sin there may be it is through the repentant heart that forgiveness can be found and the blood of our Savior cast out over that sinner in forgiveness, not deserved, perhaps, but given freely. We might, on the other hand, not forgive the individual sinner or perhaps we cannot see the truth in the repentant heart of someone who has so violated us and others of the congregation we cannot associate with that individual again.
This is not wrong on our part, as we are instructed to have nothing to do with workers of darkness. We do not have the ability to see into the mind of such an individual so our caution is to stay away, or keep the willful sinner away from us and our family, our congregation. Tolerance is not our objective as this would lead to congregations being polluted with every kind of evil in the name of “tolerance” and not being “judgmental” which is an abuse of the Word.
A professing believer in the Messiah that commits murderer can repent, certainly, but to repent, and then to commit murder again, and then repent and murder again, this is approaching sin against the Holy Spirit, which is unforgivable. It is like an abuse of power, actually, abuse of a gift from our Heavenly Father paid for by the Blood of His Son.
There is plenty of opportunity for believers to practice forgiveness and to not be too harsh toward others, as when we see others living life and falling to the occasional simple sin.
What is simple sin? I define “simple sin” as any sin not against the Holy Spirit and not a sin against society and mankind in general. It is usually something we stumble into. Falling to temptation, a bad thought, a bad act, something you know is wrong but for a moment in time you fail to be strong. It can be something you become aware after the fact, something you said or thought, later realizing your error -- a simple sin. Your immediate response, once you see or feel the error, should be to repent, to fall before the throne of your Father and say you are sorry.
How many times should you say you’re sorry? Every time you fall, the battle goes on, you are of the flesh still and it is battling against the purity of the Holy Spirit, it strives to do good while the nature of the flesh, of you is to strive against that Spirit, to naturally to do evil – this is why we need a Savior, this is why YaHshua came. Evil is not as the world sees it, as some big thing against everyone, which it is, but sin in humans is natural for flesh cannot inherit the Kingdom but with YaHshua we can be forgiven our sins and while evil is worthy of death we are worth saving as our Heavenly Father has determined but we are warned that there is a sin that receives not forgiveness and that is the sin against our Heavenly Father (Heb 8:12, Mat 12:32). Without the Blood or our Savior, paying the price for us, without our continued attitude of repentance, striving toward the goal set before us we would all die in our sin right along with those we deem evil.
It is a growth process, but you have help, He will help you, if you let Him, call on the Holy Spirit, the Christ in you, apologize to your Father, and you will find the temptations and the falling down becoming less and less as you become stronger and stronger in the Spirit.
Rom 3:9 What shall we conclude then? Are we any better? Not at all! We have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under sin. (Romans 5:14, 1 Cor 15:22, 1 Cor 15:45)
From the First Adam we are all sinners, born to sin, but under the second Adam, our Savior, YaHshua we have the promise of Salvation and not to die in our sin. So, as Paul tells the Romans, we are not better, we are all, Jew and Gentile alike, under sin. What is the reward of Sin? Death, but we have the promise, we have YaHshua, we do not battle alone.
(Heb 10:26) For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,
Willful sin as explained before is when we deliberately set out to sin, we plan to sin, to lust after the preachers wife or the preacher to lust after the females in the congregation, or to seek the money, to go after the glory and praise of men, to deliberately let the flesh have its way for greed, for personal gain, to excuse our actions as beyond our control, to ignore the Holy Spirit and trample upon what has been offered – to willfully go against the Truth for then the Sacrifice our Lord made is of no value, for we then have made our own judgment and the penalty for this is death. Let’s not become confused, however, for we do have an out, there is an escape clause, but only if we turn back. The willful sinner may be able to repent and turn around, getting back on the path, but the willful sin will be remembered and there may be some sort of lose, that is not for us to decide. But, we have a defense, and it is not our ability to persuade or to be cunning or any device we could ever dream up.
(1Jn 2:1) My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—YaHshua the Christ, the Righteous One.
The believer will constantly fight the impulses of the sinful nature, and if sin does creep in and finds a foot hold, it will not be willingly, nor willful. We struggle and realize, at a certain point, our battle is really against higher powers, spiritual powers we cannot see, and on top of that we have the pulls of our own flesh. Just when you think you have won a battle you are tested again -- this is why we are told to put on the whole armor of God (Eph 6:11-12) and not to become to sure of ourselves, filled with pride over our accomplishment (Pr 16:18).
1Jn 1:7-9 But walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of YaHshua the Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
This is it, this is the final word, it cannot be any plainer, at least to me. When we confess our sin (when we fall or slip) "He is faithful to forgive us". From here we should be happy and praising our Savior giving thanks to our God for making this possible. We do not need to be troubling ourselves with our imperfections as we have perfection in Him. When we relax and accept His word we can begin to "rightly divide the truth" and see the clear path. We do not need to keep questioning, why this, why that, maybe I don't have the spirit -- maybe I'm not good enough, etc. Just remember, you are not good enough, you are doom to failure, you are lost, you are not good --- but -- you have YaHshua and in His righteousness you are given a part of His Spirit as a guarantee, a seal to your future, to our future, not because we were able to keep from sinning or that we were able to be perfect but because of Him. Our perfection is found in Him and our goal is to be like Him and as children called to our Heavenly Father through Him we can eventually realize perfection but not while we are in the flesh, for it is the flesh that is decaying and will cease to have an influence on us. We are waiting for the rebirth, for the being born again into the Spirit and unity with our Savior, YaHshua, and our Heavenly Father.
His blood is covering up our sins of the past and of the future so we can come before our Father as clean children, all in the name of our Savior YaHshua. Does this mean we continue to live in sin, as do those outside the faith? Absolutely not, it is our struggle to work as if we might attain "perfection", but really, the Apostle Paul already said it, even if we were to live a life seemingly perfect and without sin, we still would not have attained perfection. Ultimately it is only by the blood He shed that we are able to come into His perfection and are acceptable to the Father. Admit it when you fall short and go to Him in repentance, and know that He will forgive you and remember it no more. No matter how many time you may repeat He will forgive so long as the repentance is real.
His plan is to save Israel, the Jew, as well as those of us in the Gentile branch. Listen to what He says to the Jew through the author of the letter to the Hebrews –
(Heb 8:12) For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities (sins) will I remember no more.(Heb 10:16-17) This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities (sins) will I remember no more.
Don't believe me, believe the word and stop worrying yourself into fits of doubt. Have faith, exercise the Faith of Abraham and as he did, without proof in advance, he believe Him and His promise. Work toward living a clean life, but be ready for those times you slip. A believer will take corrective action and ask Yahshua for help and apologize (repent) and then move on so that the demons of Satan do not have a chance to get a foot hold on the mind that is filled with doubt. Resist him, Satan, and his attempts to derail you and he will flee from you.
(James 4:7) Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Praise Yahshua. I pray this message will be encouragement to those seeking the truth and following in undoubted faith, which is to believe our Heavenly Father and YaHshua. They have made us a promise and they are truthful and quick to forgive. Move on, grow up, get solid in your thinking, in your mind and in your attitude. Love conquers all, but a doubting mind is a mind practicing disbelief and will eventually give Satan an opportunity to penetrate our armor.
(Rom 3:4) Not at all! Let God be true, and every man a liar. As it is written: "So that you may be proved right when you speak and prevail when you judge."
Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth
2 Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
Satan tempted our Savior in the wilderness and he used the truth of scripture, quoting what the written word said, he tempted the Messiah to doubt. He told YaHshua what was written and challenged YaHshua to put the word to the test. What did YaHshua do, or say? He answered Satan with the truth of scripture -- He rightly divided the word of truth.
"You shall not tempt the Lord your God". Satan was not lying, he accurately quoted the scripture, but YaHshua knew of a scripture of truth that would override the scripture quoted by Satan. Do you see what this means? You can have a scripture, a "word of truth" and it will not count as a command if there is another "word of truth”, or scripture that counters it.
You cannot base or create a doctrine on a verse, or verses (truths) if there is a contradiction from other verses of truth, or a verse of truth that would be violated. What Satan told Yahshua was true but our Savior knew better, He did not tell Satan he lied, nor did He tell him he was mistaken. YaHshua gives us a perfect example of "rightly dividing the word of truth", and what is the "word of truth"? It is the scriptures, it is your Bible.
When you have something that seems to be a contradiction and you are not able to sort it out then you must wait for the answer. Too many have jumped to conclusions and have led others into false concepts and doctrines even to the point of creating religious movements and or cults. Some of those leaders in deception will defend and cause their followers to defend doctrines and beliefs to the death, even when other Scripture is produced to contradict what they are accepting as the final word. Let YaHshua be our example in this – there is no contradiction, not really, there is the truth and it must be properly divided and yes, the Holy Spirit must be allow to show us in due time anything that for now seems to be at odds with what we have already accepted. We need to remain open to correction if we are to continue to grow toward “perfection”
So, in the end, what is perfection? We cannot find true perfection in the flesh but by certain actions we can find a type of which is found in the full context of what our Lord YaHshua was teaching, and it is found in the verse that led into His saying, "...be you perfect", and this is where we end, with His words concerning our actions in our fleshly bodies --
(Mat 5:44-45) But I, YaHshua, say to you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That you may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven: for He makes His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.(Mat 5:46-47) For if ye love them which love you, what reward have you? do not even the publicans the same? And if you salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?(Mat 5:48) Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
In the full context we see that our Heavenly Father treats those outside of the Body equally and shows no favoritism in His blessings that keep this earth alive. And our Lord makes the point that even the heathens treat one another with respect and love their own, but who can love their enemy, who can bless those that hate you? He does, our Heavenly Father does, He sends the blessings of rain on us all, the good and the bad, Let us, then, emulate Him. I hope we can see the "perfection" YaHshua is teaching is not something we cannot attain. As flesh and blood we are not perfect as He is perfect, but in our actions and attitude toward others -- this perfection "type" we are capable of. It is hard to love those that hate you and do you wrong, but remember, they hated Him first, and many still do -- do not return evil for evil -- this is doable, hard, yes, but doable, even in the flesh.