by emily long
“Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Matthew 5:48
Be perfect. Sounds super easy, huh? No pressure at all. Except that doesn’t the Bible also say that we’re all sinful? Doesn’t it say that we’re all flawed? Doesn’t the Bible tell us that we’ve all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God? (Rom 3:23)
So if we’re sinful by nature and God, Who sees all from the beginning to the end, knows this, doesn’t it seem a little unfair for Him to demand that we be perfect? Seems a little like a setup, am I right?
Well, it might… until you consider one very important thing. Or should I say, one very important event.
“He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Peter 2:24
“But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5
When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. Colossians 2:13-15
I know you’re probably thinking, “Yeah, dude, we know this. It doesn’t necessarily make us perfect.” And you’d be right. But you’re also wrong. Because Jesus didn’t die solely to bear our sins. He also came to cover them. When He died, the temple veil was torn in two, giving us a direct line to the heavenly throne. Jesus became our advocate with the Father. Every time we get down on our knees and genuinely, wholeheartedly repent, Jesus approaches the Father in our defense. We are seen through His perfection. When we pray, through our direct access to His perfect forgiveness, we are washed clean. We are spotless. We are perfect.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
He will again have compassion on us; He will tread our iniquities under foot. Yes, You will cast all their sins Into the depths of the sea. Micah 7:19
“I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” Isaiah 43:25
This is what God wants. He knows we can’t be perfect of our own accord. What He wants is for us to stay in touch with His perfection. He wants a constant, close relationship. He wants us to call on Him, daily and hourly. He wants to help us resist our fleshly nature and, when we do fall, He wants to catch us and forgive us.