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Donut Theology

(1)

Sermon shared by Rick Pendleton

September 2012
Summary: A unique take on what it means to be "Perfect"
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: General adults
Sermon:
Donut Theology

Matthew 5:38-5:48

In the last sentence of our passage today, Jesus says something that is very confusing… "Be perfect, therefore, as your Heavenly Father is perfect."
Be Perfect! Doesn’t that make you scratch your head?
How can we possibly be “PERFECT”?
Or does it make you feel inferior or guilty?
If perfection is the goal, I might as well give up right now. I know me, and like Paul says in Romans 7, 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[c] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.

I don’t know if moral and sinless perfection is possible for anyone… but I know it is not for me.
I don’t even understand how the scripture can in one place say that we are to be prefect as God is perfect…
And even give us biblical examples of those who were perfect…
Genesis 6:9 says, "Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God."

And Paul’s wrote to the Philippians 3:15 "Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded":

And in another place say that NO ONE IS PERFECT…"All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God."

Now something is wrong here!!!!
Either it is possible… or it is not.

Either… Noah and the people Paul is writing to… defied Romans 3:23 or Perfection means something different from what we understand

I guess “it depends upon what the meaning of the word perfect… is.”
CLIP “What Is Is”

Today I want to help you to understand what the meaning of "perfection" is
It is used three different ways in the scriptures
The Perfection OF CHRIST (and God)
The Perfection IN CHRIST
The Perfection LIKE CHRIST

The Perfection OF CHRIST (and God)
We just tend to think of perfection in one way… total sinlessness
As it is applied to Jesus and God… that is true
The scriptures tell us that God is perfect and cannot be tempted to sin
Jesus, God in the flesh, could be tempted… but was “without sin.”

Jesus NEVER SINNED… NO ONCE… EVER
That is perfect moral perfection
It belongs to… or is true of Jesus and no one else
For everyone else… Romans tells the truth… “FOR ALL HAVE SINNED”

God does not expect you or me to have the absolute moral and sinless perfection which Jesus had because he told us it was impossible

So there is the PERFECTION OF CHRIST … a level of perfection to which you and I will not be held

Next… there is
The Perfection IN CHRIST

I want to use this donut to help you to understand the biblical concept of the PERFECTION IN CHRIST

Is this Donut real? YES!! Is the hole real? YES!!
It is real even though we cannot touch it or see it or taste it or experience it with any of our senses
If it were a make-believe hole… this penny would not go through
IT IS REAL
But a real hole is kind of a contradiction… it is real but it isn’t
I can’t take the hole out of the donut and place it on this plate
Now listen really closely to what I am about to say…
THE HOLE EXISTS ONLY IN RELATION TO THE DONUT
THE HOLE EXISTS ONLY IN CONNECTION TO THE DONUT
The hole exists ONLY if the donut exists
If you take away the donut… the hole
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