“Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”Matthew 5:48
When I was dating my wonderful wife, Charlotte, I told her often that she was perfect. That early love made us both think the other simply could do no wrong. But we both found out pretty quickly after marriage that neither of us was perfect!
So how are we to understand Jesus’ hard words telling us to be perfect? We know that nobody can live a perfect, sinless life. We know many who’ve struggled to do so and have instead carried a life-long burden of feeling inadequate.
When Jesus urged sinful people to be perfect, He was admonishing us to let our love be complete. When we love all people, even those who are unlovable, we are becoming “perfect” in how we love. Paul challenged the Ephesian church to be imitators of God. The early church believers were first called Christians because people said they acted like little Christ’s.
The only thing perfect about us is the continual cleansing of our sins through the shed blood of Jesus, poured out to perfectly satisfy the debt we owed. And for that we are perfectly grateful!
“To be like Jesus,/ All I ask is to be like Him./ All through life’s journey,/ from earth to glory,/ All I ask, is to be like Him.”