Wednesday, 8 August 2018
Matthew 5:48 "Therefore be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect."
Would Yeshua give us a command that is impossible to attain?
Surely Yeshua would never command us to perform the impossible. Would He? Perhaps we are going to have to spiritualize away any practical application of these words. NOT! Let's deal with it and get what God has for us today.
Chapter 5 starts with the "beatitudes". These are 8 blessings. Sometimes I like to gain perspective by thinking of the possibilities of opposites. The opposites of the"Be-Attitudes" would be the "Don't-Be-Attitudes". Oh, forget that. Let's stick to the real beatitudes.
The beatitudes aren't really so much attitudes (although some are) but ways of responding to adversity. Can we be peacemakers, poor in spirit, mourn (over the loss of a loved one), pursue righteousness and more? If so, the Lord describes the blessings that will come upon us. If we can do these things, we will be closer to being perfect.
Then there is the section on salt and light. Do you know what ruins salt? Having dirt mixed in. Do you catch the metaphor? Keep the dirt out and stay pure and ... be closer to being perfect.
Then Yeshua gives us a new standard for obeying God's righteous commands; not even imagining evil. That's right, every act starts out as an idea. Don't even think aboutdoing wrong and (yup, you guessed it) ... we'll be closer to being perfect.
This is long, but fits this discussion like a glove:
Philippians 3:12-16 "Not that I have already obtained this or been perfected, but I press on if only I might take hold of that for which Messiah Yeshua took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself as having taken hold of this. But this one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal for the reward of the upward calling of God in Messiah Yeshua. Therefore let all who are mature have this attitude; and if you have a different attitude in anything, this also God will reveal to you. Nevertheless, let us live up to the same standard we have attained."
Blessings, Rabbi Michael
Rabbi Michael Weiner,