These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.Genesis 6:9
And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.Genesis 17:1
Thou shalt be perfect with the LORD thy God.Deuteronomy 18:13
God has always required mankind’s best. The call to perfection was present even in the Old Testament, where they had to sacrifice animals to atone for their sins. Hebrews 10:4 says it is impossible for the blood of bulls and of goats to take away sin. It could not make them perfect as pertaining to the conscience. God understood this and thus overlooked some things in the OT. This was never God’s total standard of perfection, which came to light through the work of His Son, Jesus Christ.
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.Matthew 5:48
Now God has raised the standard of perfection in the New Testament. He says to be perfect as God the Father is perfect. Some have assumed this to be an impossible command from Jesus, but it’s really not. When Jesus says to be perfect, He is taking about the heart and the conscience of man. To be perfect is to love God with all your heart and to love your neighbor as yourself. If someone does that on a consistent basis, they will be morally perfect and have a conscience that is clean and free from sin.
After being made perfect through love, God expects us to grow in perfection. If God gives you 1 thing to do and you do it, you are doing 100% of what God requires and your heart is perfect before God. God can then give you a 2nd thing to do and you’ll be doing 2 out of 2 things and still be doing 100% and still be perfect before God. All the while we are growing in perfection and becoming more and more like Jesus Christ.
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.Philippians 3:12-15
Paul is not contradicting Jesus’ command in these verses. He says he doesn’t consider himself perfect, because he still has a lot of growing to do in Christ. He then goes on to say that as many as be perfect, have the mind of Christ on the matter. Those that have a perfect, sin-free heart before the Lord are determined to grow in grace until they are completely perfected.
I am perfect before the Lord, because I walk in love as exhibited by His Son Jesus Christ. I still have much to learn in God’s ways of love. I am not ashamed to call myself perfect, because my heart is perfect by the Lord’s standard of being perfect. Yet equally true is that I am being perfected and my heart is being enlarged spiritually to do greater and greater works of love for God and His Son, Jesus Christ.
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.1 John 4:18
I am free from fear through the blood of Jesus Christ. I know God watches over me and keeps me free from fear. Thus, I am made perfect by walking in God’s love and by receiving God’s love. You can be made perfect in love too! Just forsake your life of sin and obey the gospel of Jesus Christ. Call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.