“You, therefore, must be perfect [growing into complete maturity of godliness in mind and character, having reached the proper height of virtue and integrity], as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Matt. 5:48 (The Amplified Bible)
That’s a pretty strong command from our Lord Jesus. But do any of us ever reach it? Just about the time I think I have a particular sin conquered, along comes something else I have to overcome.
I’m reminded frequently that none of us in this life seem to ever reach that goal. If we place too high a standard with others, they will disappoint us. Sometimes repeatedly. But that’s where grace and the love of God comes in. God’s love in and for us allows us to forgive others and ourselves.
“Above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins [forgives and disregards the offenses of others].” I Peter 4:8 (The Amplified Bible)
Love forgives and disregards the offenses of others. Praise God for his love and grace which He pours over us without measure.
King Jehoshaphat was king of Judah and the Bible says the Lord was with him because he walked in the ways of his ancestor David and “… sought and yearned with all his desire for the Lord, the God of his father, and walked in His commandments and not after the ways of Israel. Therefore the Lord established the kingdom in his hand; and all Judah brought tribute to Jehoshaphat, and he had great riches and honor.” 2 Chron. 17: 4, 5
Jehoshaphat sent leaders to teach in all the cities of Judah the Book of the Law, God’s written word, so that the people would know and fear the Lord.
But even Jehoshaphat made wrong decisions and bad alliances. He allied with Ahab, the king of the southern tribes, Israel, who was not following after God. Jehoshaphat agreed to go into battle with King Ahab even thought God’s prophet warned it would end badly. (See 2 Chron. 8:15-17.)
When the enemy’s army came against him, Jehoshaphat called out to God “…and the Lord helped him; and God moved them to depart from him.” 2 Chron. 8:31b
Jehoshaphat was not a perfect man as none of us are, but he was God’s man. At the end of his life it was said of him “And he walked in the ways of Asa his father and departed not from it, doing what was right in the sight of the Lord.” 2 Chron. 20:32
Wouldn’t it be nice to know that when the end of our time comes they could say about us that we had walked in the ways of God and did what was right in the sight of the Lord. And is it not comforting to know even when we make bad decisions, God will not hold it against us but will help us if we call out.
“MY LITTLE children, I write you these things so that you may not violate God’s law and sin. But if anyone should sin, we have an Advocate (One Who will intercede for us) with the Father–[it is] Jesus Christ [the all] righteous [upright, just, Who conforms to the Father’s will in every purpose, thought, and action].” 1 John 2:1 (The Amplified Bible)
Peace and blessings in our Lord Jesus Christ,