October 12, 2006

Does God Expect Perfection?

I have heard some preachers and other teachers of Christianity say that God expects perfection from us in regards to our walk with him. The first thought that comes to my mind upon hearing this is, "If God expects our perfection, then why did Jesus die for our sinfulness"? If these preachers are right, it makes me wonder why our Lord's sinless blood had to flow for our salvation.
We have all went our own way which was apart and separated from God and his love. I love God very much, but even though I do, I have strayed from him in my past. I think if we were all entirely honest, we would admit to the same.

Christianity is a walk. It is us changing our minds about everything we were so sure of in life and then changing the direction that our lives will take, with the help of the comforter, the Holy Spirit and the Bible: the word of God. It is an admittance and an acceptance that what God said in the bible is true and that it is to be applied to us personally.

Where does our perfection fit in to all of these revelations? I am not so sure what those preachers mean when they say we are to be "perfect". I could be perfect according to my own standards, but that may not mean that I would be perfect according to theirs. And even if I were able to live up to another's standards, would those even be the standards that God requires of me? I don't think so.

Does being perfect mean being sinless? It cannot involve being sinless because all of us, even those who share the closest relationship with God and Jesus Christ still do sin on occasion. The bible reminds us that if we say we have no sin, we are liars and do not tell the truth. We live in this world that is stretched beyond measure with it's darkness and sinfulness. We are still in this world by the way. Even though we are not to allow this world to mold and shape our minds and spirits.

The Christian Walk

As Christians, I believe that we are to walk it out. On this walk called the "Christian walk" we will surely meet up with good times and bad. We will see and experience overwhelming temptations and other bad situations that will make us stumble as well as beautiful things and things that edify and make us stronger and strengthen our faith. We are overwhelmed at times and brought low with the struggles of living in this world and other times we are made stronger.

God's son and our Savior, Jesus Christ was and is perfect. He never sinned, yet he was tempted to sin in all areas, just as we are tempted to sin, yet the temptations that surrounded our Lord did not lead to his sin as our temptations many times do lead us to sin.

This is the reason that he is the supreme sacrifice for sin. The lamb of God, Jesus Christ, is truly worthy in every way to be that sacrifice for our sin. Even though we desire with everything in us to "be perfect", we are not going to get there until we are finally in his presence in heaven where we will stand before him in all his glory. There will always be some life matter that we will struggle to overcome and to gain victory over. When I was younger, I would overcome a particular temptation or weakness and think that I had finally come to the point in which I was "almost perfect". I had much to learn :)

For no sooner had I conquered that particular sin but what would you know? I would have another to face soon after. And this is what I meant by Christianity being a "walk". You pace yourself in this walk with the Lord. You don't go full steam ahead at 100 mph or you will burn out quickly. Spiritual burn out is something that happens to many Christians and leads to discouragement in their walk with the Lord. God has mercy and patience with us. This is what many Christians do not fully understand. He knows that we are but dust. But with his spirit living inside of us, we are mighty. We should never come to expect more from ourselves than God does.

Just as a good parent knows that their children will make mistakes and do the wrong things, those parents are never ok with the children learning nothing from their negative experiences, they expect those kids to learn from their mistakes. And yes, there will be sins that we struggle with in life. We are expected to learn from them and go on to overcome them, all with the Lord's help. He is there for us. He knows we are not perfect. But thanks be to God for sending Jesus to this dark world and giving us the gift that none of us deserve.

When we overcome a particular weakness or sin, God rejoices with us! But we should not neglect to remember that there will surely be other temptations and trials during our Christian walk. We will be perfected when we are in his presence at last and look upon his beautiful face and behold his glory.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reading!