On To Perfection

Posted on Aug 9, 2012 in Articles

                An honest and humble Christian will never state they are sinless and perfect. Part of Christianity is realizing that we must strive to improve in our character and conduct each passing day. However, as we strive to reach perfection we will never really attain it because weakness and imperfections. If we desire to reach such spiritual maturity we must diligently strive for it. The Hebrew writer encouraged such maturity by stating, “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God” (Heb. 6:1).

The Hebrew writer is not commanding that unless we are sinless and perfect before God we are not acceptable. He simply states that we must strive for spiritual maturity. One reason so many never really reach the much needed level of spiritual maturity a Christian needs is because they fail to leave the first principles. This was the problem with the Hebrew Christians! Note the condemnation, “For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe” (Heb. 5:12-13).

It seems that many will become comfortable in the basics of Scripture and never challenge themselves to grow in knowledge and understanding. The Hebrew writer was challenging the recipients to go beyond the fundamental doctrines of Christianity. He listed, “Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment” (Heb. 6:2). These doctrines are necessary to convert the lost. However, when one is converted they must progress beyond these basic principles. It is very important that we understand that we are never to leave the doctrine of Christ, but the first principles. If we are found leaving the doctrine of Christ we are in a dangerous state! The apostle John describes this state by saying, “Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son” (2 John 1:9). One who goes beyond and leaves the doctrine of Christ is without God and without God is a situation that is hopeless!

We must also remember that we are to continually strive to improve. If we ever think we have arrived at the point of perfection we are far more foolish then we may think our selves to be! The apostle Paul even said he continually pressed forward. Note his confession, “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” (Phil. 3:12-14). If the apostle Paul had to continually strive to improve his spiritual state, we should as well.

So each passing day we must strive for improvement in our spiritual health. The final statement from Peter’s pen encourages, “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.” (2 Pet. 3:18)

Dale Barger