Summary: Characteristics of Christian perfection from the sermon on the mount.
Characteristics of Christian Perfection
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. (Matthew 5:48 AV)
James 1:4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
Colossians 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:
Is there such a thing as Christian perfection. Yes. But the problem when we look at the word perfection we are thinking about it in the terms of God. We are thinking on God’s terms instead of ours. We compare our perfection as is God. The problem is we have already lost that with the sin nature we was born in and the sins we have committed so compared to our father we can never be perfect.
But as our father we are to be perfect. In this sense we began from where he has brought us and our desire is to be perfect. I don’t believe it refers to as much sinless as it does blameless. And in this perfection there is the matter of maturation or maturing and growing.
We could never achieve perfection with God because he never sinned but we could grow and mature in that we will mature. We pick up on the characteristics in which God has given us and we work in each.
Jesus gives us some characteristics that we should work toward. They are called “Characteristics of Christian Perfection”. If we are going to achieve what God had intended for us and what the purpose that Jesus spoke the sermon on the mount then we are to mature in these.
Characteristics of Christian Perfection
Jesus gives us six traits that a Christian must have in their lives.
I. Peaceable verses 21-26 (anger)
The first trait of the mature or perfect Christian is peaceable. Making peace with our fellow brother. To make peace means that we are not to sin in our anger and not to say things in which we should not. It means that we are to make amends with our fellow brother or sister before we are to go to the altar of God.
Does it mean that everyone will like you no? Does it mean that you will get everyone to agree? No. What it does mean is that you clear your conscience with you fellow brother or sister.
It means that you are to be above reproach. The best way to overcome the rumors and barbs of others is to be above reproach yourself. I have learned that many times we wouldn’t have the rumors or questions about our character if we did not place ourselves in such a position that our character could be questioned.
Mark 9:50 Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his saltness, wherewith will ye season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace one with another.
Romans 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.
James 3:17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
Proper way of handling disputes
Matthew 18:15 ¶ Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. 16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. 17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
II. Pure verses 27-30 (adultery)
The second trait is purity. We are to be pure. Holy. A mature Christian is to be pure. Clean of all sin. Let there be no stronghold of sin in our lives. Any thing that would drag us to hell is no good for us.
We are to be pure daily. Asking for God’s forgiveness. It does not mean that we will be perfect with no sin but hopefully we will be pure after sin, if we repent.
1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
III. In search of Harmony verses 31-32 (divorce)
The third Characteristics of a mature Christian is to be in harmony. As noted earlier in reconciliation but this means more than to just reconcile it means to be in harmony.
Most would agree that divorce is not the greatest thing for the family. I do understand that there are circumstances that warrant divorce. Jesus even gives us some as do Paul. I believe if we followed their principles more closely we would have a lot less divorces.