Let me ask you a question, when the world look at us Christians, do they admire us for our great discipline? For how well we take care of our bodies? For how emotionally sound we are? Or, even for our spirituality? I am afraid they don’t. In the name of grace and, in the name of God’s love, we have been moving closer to the progressive wing. There is a reason why this is happening; this is because we have adapted certain false doctrines that continue to increasingly Waterdown the gospel and, God’s demands on His people.
One of the biggest lies out there is that God accepts us the way we are. No, he does not! God only accepts perfection. “When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless” Genesis 17:1 (NIV) The word blameless is the Hebrew word tāmiym: meaning complete. We are incomplete when we walk in foolishness. You May say, “That’s Old Testament stuff.” However, Jesus tells us, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Matthew 5:48 (NIV) The word perfect here is the Greek word téleios; meaning “…Finished, that which has reached its end, term, limit; hence, complete, full, wanting in nothing.”
You May add, “Well, nobody is perfect.” And, you are correct on this statement. However, this is where Jesus is the key. To come into the Kingdom of God we must be born again (John 3). As you read John 3 and Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus, you realized that there is only one part of us that can be born again; that is our spirit.
How are we born again? It is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8-9) Romans 10:10-11 tells us, “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” (NIV)
The sinners’ prayer is not what saves us, it is the fact that you believe in your heart first. By the time you pray, you are just expressing what God already did in your heart. Beloved, we are chosen (1 Peter 2:9).
So now, back to perfection. When we come to God, we are perfect through Christ. Second Corinthians 5:21 tells us, “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (NIV) That perfection comes to us as a gift through Jesus. Righteousness is the only moral level acceptable by God. That is the reason why, without Christ, none of us have a chance for salvation. So, we don’t come to God as we are, God bless us with grace to have faith to believe and repent of our sin. That divine combination brings forth our salvation through Jesus Christ.
So now, as you notice, after we are born again, we still have issues; don’t we? That is because only one part of us was born again… our spirit. We still live in a flesh that resist God (Galatians 5:17) and we have a soul in need of restoration (Psalm 23). We still need to change the way we think about certain things, we still struggle with adverse emotions and, we still mess up with our decision-making. Many of us are suffering today because our bad decisions. Beloved, this is where we either water down the gospel or pursue the excellence that God demands.
To be continued…
 Warren Baker and Eugene E. Carpenter, The Complete Word Study Dictionary: Old Testament(Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2003), 1232.
 Spiros Zodhiates, The Complete Word Study Dictionary: New Testament (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2000).