On Being Perfect

The Bible tells us that God has a standard of perfection that those who would be ready for heaven will attain. I used to qualify anything I said about what that standard is by saying that we don’t know what it is because so many people have a huge problem with the idea that we can reach perfection in this life. But God knows exactly what that standard is and He promises that we will reach it.

So what is it? It’s been right in front of us the whole time—the life of Jesus Christ. Plain and simple, Jesus lived a perfect life and this is the life we are told that we are to live in the same way and by the same power that He did.

The law of God is our standard and Jesus came to this world, the embodiment of the law, perfectly obeying it, and seeking always to do the will of the Father. His life was an example for us to follow in our own lives.

“If you would have beauty and loveliness of character, the divine law must be written upon the heart and carried out in the life.” Conflict and Courage, 26

Someone might say that it would be impossible for us to live a life like Jesus. And they’d be right if we had to achieve it alone, but we don’t.

“Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6

“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror, for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.” James 1:22–25

If the law of God is written on our hearts, then everything we do and say will be a reflection of it, an outworking of that principle of righteousness which we do not have, but God promises to give.

“True beauty of character is not something that shines out only on special occasions; the grace of Christ dwelling in the soul is revealed under all circumstances. He who cherishes this grace as an abiding presence in the life will reveal beauty in character under trying as well as under easy circumstances. In the home, in the world, in the church, we are to live the life of Christ. There are souls all around in need of conversion. When the law of God is written upon the heart, and is witnessed to in a holy character, those who know not the power of the grace of Christ will be led to desire it, and will be converted.” Our Father Cares, 298

“As in water face reflects face, so a man’s heart reveals the man.” Proverbs 27:19

Dear Father, may we, by Your grace and power, work for that perfection of character that You require and promise to give.