Loves Shows the Way
Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect. Matthew 5:48 NKJV
How can we be perfect—sinless and flawlessly perfect? As long as we have an earthly nature, we will never have sinless perfection like God does in heaven, but we can be perfect in character, in holiness, in maturity, and in love. How? Love shows the way to perfection.
Being on the path of perfection and staying on the path can be hard. For example, whenever we are wronged, often our first reaction is to get even and retaliate against our perceived enemy, and to keep score of their wrongs. Jesus taught that we should love and forgive, but is this natural? No, it is supernatural, and only God’s love can show us the way to the path of perfection, because love and forgiveness keeps us on the path.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus outlined several “higher standards of righteous” for us to practice if we were ever to become perfect (Matt. 5:38-48). Retaliation, revenge, refusing to give, hate, and not praying for those who hurt us, will cause us to stall on the path. Humanly speaking, the exceeding high standard of behavior the Lord calls for is nearly impossible without the help of the Holy Spirit and God’s love in your heart (Matt. 5:20). Once on the path, we must be determined to stay on the path; therefore, we must forget about all of our past failures, mistakes, missteps, and short-comings and keep pressing on (Phil. 3:13-14).
Love shows the way to those who aspire to be imitators of God (Eph. 5:1). On the path of perfection, we must resist retaliation when wronged and desire Christian maturity; we must love those who hate us; pray for those who persecute us; and, show kindness to both friend and foe by imitating God’s love. Love shows the way!