“Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”
You know… this verse… if it doesn’t defeat you… it will have you feeling a lot like Jacob after he wrestled with God (Gen 32:24-32). Because to be perfectly honest (forgive the pun), it’s defeated me on multiple occasions and still does! But I will not give up! To strive with the Word of God (Rev 19:13) is sacred and powerful!
- It might be that you are experiencing defeat upon wrestling with this verse of perfection?
- Or it might have nothing to do with this verse at all, but that you are experiencing defeat at this time in your life?
Don’t be discouraged unless you’ve given up contending with God by setting the Bible aside to do as you please, and if that’s the case, let this devotional reignite that faith. To be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect means we have a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Jesus would not have this verse inserted by the guiding hand of the Holy Spirit in Matthew if it was unattainable for us here and now while on this earth. So we first need to believe in the promise this verse provides which is… to be perfect in love …that is what perfection is—love. And how this was exemplified was the event of Christs’ death on the cross. At this point you’re saying, “The only person who could live perfectly was Jesus Christ and therefore it’s impossible for me to be perfect as my heavenly Father is perfect.”
And you’d be correct, but it also leaves us discontent because that truth is insignificant if it proves only that Jesus Christ died for Himself to be perfect. But that was not the will of our heavenly Father. Let us be reminded that Jesus pleaded for the cup to be removed from Him (Luk 22:44) yet remaining obedient to the will of our heavenly Father. And so at that point the weight of our sin was so unbearable it could only be accomplished through the love of our heavenly Father as His only Son carried the weight of you and me… to death.
But see, it didn’t end there! As a matter of fact, our perfection began there when Christ breathed His last by committing His Spirit to God, our Father (Luk 23:46). Because it was in that transaction that the world became witness to salvation, and upon believing from the heart… a person is saved through the forgiveness of sin. So how then are we who believe—perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect—if we are still in sin? And the answer is… faith! Faith is the only treasure on this earth that enables our ability to be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect (Heb 11:6, 1Jo 5:4).
I hope this devotional gives you the treasure of our heavenly Father. Let’s be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect, Amen.