Today’s devotional continues our series on “Are You Perfect?” (Please read the previous two devotionals if you happened to miss them.) In our examination of Scriptural Perfection, we’ve already seen that Perfection is a Possibility and that its Presence is essential to living an abundant life in Christ. We have also noted that Perfection is a matter of God Himself empowering us to be perfect, as He is perfect (Luke 6:40). We now turn to an examination of this Power, as it is given by God, to see its transformational work in making us perfect.
(John 1:12-13) “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: (13) Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”
In this very familiar passage of Scripture, we note that those being so indicated are those who received Christ. As they have received Christ, they have also received Power. Christ is that Power which is received/given. Receiving is the passive, while giving is the active. Either way, there is a clear empowerment given for the transformation of the recipients “to become the sons of God.” The Power to become a son of God is that same Power to be “even as” (Luke 6:40) our Heavenly Father is – Perfect.
This is a significant fact because we now are sons of God (1 John 3:2). No one would dispute the saint’s sonship. But if the Power to become a son is that same Power to be Perfect, why is perfection disputed as a Present Possibility? It is the same Spirit of Adoption that causes us to cry, “Abba, Father” (Galatians 4:6), as well as causing us to be perfect as He is Perfect.
(John 17:20-23) “Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; (21) That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. (22) And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: (23) I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.”
Our Power to be Perfect is the effectual working of the Spirit of Christ in us which also causes us to become One with God. This is a point many will shun, but the obvious teaching of Jesus Christ is that our Perfection (being Possible and Present) is a process of us becoming One in Spirit with Him (1 Corinthians 6:17). God is a Spirit (John 4:24) and our Oneness indicates a singularity of Being as we partake of the Divine Nature (2 Peter 1:4). This point has great underpinnings for our Power in prayer. But it is clear that this Power is given by God.
It is also evident from the Possible Presence of Perfection that such is progressively gained by hearing the Word of God.
(2 Timothy 3:16-17) “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: (17) That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”
The Word of God is a vital tool in the perfecting of the saints. It is important for the child of God to grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18) in order to come to maturity. But we mustn’t forget that maturity is not the same as perfection, it is a sign of perfection, being an effect of the progressive Power of God working in the recipient thereof.
This Power of Perfection is very real and alive in the child of God, pushing them onward and upward to the Glory of God. Again, this Power is Presently at work, but remains a Possibility until it is put into practice by the hearer of the Word becoming the doer of the Word, surrendering, submitting, obeying, and enduring in this Power to perform the command of God:
(Matthew 19:21) “Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.”