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Are Christians called to be Holy and Perfect?

Rajesh Sahu

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Why did God/ Christ call us to be Holy and Perfect when he knew we are sinners? What was He exhorting us to do/ be?
[ Please answer in love ] /\
“Be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1: 16

Matthew 5:48
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
 
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Knotical

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Because He knows that it requires His help for us to be perfect. Everything He requires of us points back to Him. We can do nothing on our own.
 

JohnDB

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Ok...
Going out on a limb here...

What definition are you using for "Holy"?

Seeing how that to most of us "perfect" is a portion of the definition of "Holy".

Holy is a description of something. Like we tend to say that matter is in a solid, liquid, or gaseous state. We say that energy describes motion broken down into things like torque and watts and etc.
Holiness is like another category akin to matter or energy...but holy can be matter or energy and is more encompassing than the box you seem to be putting it in.

So can you please explain yourself just a bit more on this subject?
 

Rajesh Sahu

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Ok...
Going out on a limb here...

What definition are you using for "Holy"?

Seeing how that to most of us "perfect" is a portion of the definition of "Holy".

Holy is a description of something. Like we tend to say that matter is in a solid, liquid, or gaseous state. We say that energy describes motion broken down into things like torque and watts and etc.
Holiness is like another category akin to matter or energy...but holy can be matter or energy and is more encompassing than the box you seem to be putting it in.

So can you please explain yourself just a bit more on this subject?
Leviticus 11:44-45
44 For I am Yahweh your God, so you must consecrate yourselves and be holy because I am holy. You must not defile yourselves by any swarming creature that crawls on the ground. 45 For I am Yahweh, who brought you up from the land of Egypt to be your God, so you must be holy because I am holy.

Peter in 1 Peter 1: 13-15 quotes the verse.
Be Holy
13 Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do;16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”

I believe Peter explains what Christ asks us to be
 
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JohnDB

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Leviticus 11:44-45
44 For I am Yahweh your God, so you must consecrate yourselves and be holy because I am holy. You must not defile yourselves by any swarming creature that crawls on the ground. 45 For I am Yahweh, who brought you up from the land of Egypt to be your God, so you must be holy because I am holy.
Soooo
with this limited scripture are you saying that in order to be holy we must be bug free only?

probably more is required than to be free of bugs and a good attitude.
 

Rajesh Sahu

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Soooo
with this limited scripture are you saying that in order to be holy we must be bug free only?

probably more is required than to be free of bugs and a good attitude.
No brother, not at all. Just inviting views on the scripture. I learn a lot from views interpretation and insights of brothers and sisters . I believe we edify and sharpen each other as Iron sharpens iron.....Proverbs 27:17 . That's all
 
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Rajesh Sahu

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Because He knows that it requires His help for us to be perfect. Everything He requires of us points back to Him. We can do nothing on our own.
Then why does Jesus lay the terms for discipleship here ?
Matthew 16:24

Then Jesus said to his disciples, "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.​
 

Knotical

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Then why does Jesus lay the terms for discipleship here ?
Matthew 16:24

Then Jesus said to his disciples, "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.​
That is part of our response to being called by God to follow Him. However, we are unable to truly do so until we have been called, and He makes it possible to fulfil His requirements.
 

Edward

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Why did God/ Christ call us to be Holy and Perfect when he knew we are sinners? What was He exhorting us to do/ be?
[ Please answer in love ] /\
“Be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1: 16

Matthew 5:48
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

I believe I understand what it is that you're asking. It actually seems pretty clear. The answer is clearly yes, we are called to be Holy. Why would He call us to be Holy, knowing that it is impossible for us as sinners? (Gasp!)

Easy, because it is impossible for us to be holy...without Christ. We would have to seek the Lord's help, for it is written, with God, all things are possible. So if we would need to seek the Lord's help with this...that's what the Lord wants us to do! Working with the Lord to make this happen in our life...builds relationship!

Can we be Holy while still here on earth? Of course we can, in Christ...on earth as it is in Heaven, remember my Brothers and Sisters?

I suspect that the confusion may arise...with lazy Christians? The type who only want to believe, and no more. Oh, we don't want a works based salvation, they say...and, they may get into Heaven, it is not for me to decide. But the Lord does call us to more than simple belief. This takes pressing in, walking in it and doing more than a hearer only.

The reality of walking with the Lord is that, when one presses in and is led by the Spirit...they will be be called to walk in it and to actually go out and do some good works. We are not bystanders in this spiritual war! We are participants and have a duty to want to help.


Some Christians don't want to do that. Oooo too scary, I'm not worthy, I'm not perfect, so why try?
Uhh...rubbish, Brother. What part of, be ye holy even as I am holy...is hard to understand?
Why do Christians continue to call themselves sinners? I am not a sinner. I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus... I have sin within me and do sin at times, tis true. But we have not been taken out of the sin environment yet. Sin's influence is still present at this time. But I do not live a lifestyle of sin, I try to walk a good walk. I fail at times like we all do, but I get back up and keep trying, keep asking for the Lords forgiveness and help. I would rather fail in effort trying, than never tried at all.

In not trying to be holy or not trying to do any good works, we would find ourselves in the position of...the man who had one Talent and buried it in the ground. Who wants to show up empty handed?! Not me, Brother!
 
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Edward

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That is part of our response to being called by God to follow Him. However, we are unable to truly do so until we have been called, and He makes it possible to fulfil His requirements.

Sorry, Brother. You are clearly mistaken here. Are you or are you not, "in Christ?" He does make it possible for us in this way. Why do you think that Jesus taught us to pray in the manner which says...on Earth as it is in Heaven?

I believe you are in Christ. So...do you not believe that anything is possible with Christ? You have Christ within you...and can't do it? I don't buy that...
 

WIP

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Why did God/ Christ call us to be Holy and Perfect when he knew we are sinners? What was He exhorting us to do/ be?
[ Please answer in love ] /\
“Be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1: 16

Matthew 5:48
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
I believe He is telling us what we are to strive for. Isn't this also what Paul is telling the Philippians in chapter 2:12-16 ESV?

12 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. 14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.
 
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Knotical

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Sorry, Brother. You are clearly mistaken here. Are you or are you not, "in Christ?" He does make it possible for us in this way. Why do you think that Jesus taught us to pray in the manner which says...on Earth as it is in Heaven?

I believe you are in Christ. So...do you not believe that anything is possible with Christ? You have Christ within you...and can't do it? I don't buy that...
You may want to go over what I wrote again. Of course anything is possible with Christ, as long as you are acting according to His Holy will. It is impossible for us to be anything close to perfect without Him.
 

LovethroughDove

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It is blasphemy to say that the Holy Spirit does not make you holy. This is what happens when you are born again.....you are holy and are being transformed into perfection (like him)

2 Corinthians 3:18 And we who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
 

for_his_glory

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We are all sinners saved by Gods grace, Ephesians 2:8. It's that grace that expects us to conform to the image of Christ who is holy and not to be conformed to this world especially if we are walking in Gods Holy Spirit. Romans Chapter 12 explains how we keep ourselves holy and Galatians 5:13-26 and Colossians Chapter 3 teaches us how to be perfect before the Lord while living on earth.
 

Rajesh Sahu

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I believe He is telling us what we are to strive for. Isn't this also what Paul is telling the Philippians in chapter 2:12-16 ESV?

12 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. 14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.
Amen. Great reply. Personally I'm trying to do "sin fasting". Fighting hard to keep from sinning. I'm succeeding more than before. God's call was for us to be holy and blameless. I'm taking this call very very seriously. And I noticed in my fasting, the Lord helps when I do that. Just like he walks away from me when I engage in sinful acts
 

chessman

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Personally I'm trying to do "sin fasting". Fighting hard to keep from sinning. I'm succeeding more than before.


But while you are fasting, anoint your head and wash your face so that you may not appear to people as one fasting, but to your Father, the One in secret. And your Father, the One seeing in secret, will reward you.
Matthew 6:17-18 - https://www.biblegateway.com/passage?search=Matthew 6:17-18&version=DLNT

Are you fasting in secret in obedience to the Lord’s command?
 

OzSpen

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Matthew 5:48
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

Rajesh,

I'll focus on this 'perfect' translation. The problem we have here is with the English translation of 'perfect' that communicates the idea of complete or absolute sinlessness. Even with Jesus living in me, I'm incapable of that standard - because I have a sinful nature, that God does not have.

I conclude that,
(1) either God is requiring something I cannot attain (perfection) - which makes God a liar (which He is not - Heb 6:18), or

(2) in the original languages, 'perfection' has a meaning that is difference from our English connotation.

The word for 'perfect' in Matt 5:48 is teleios. It refers to a goal and I don't know one single word in English to convey its meaning. It doesn't mean absolute sinlessness, just like God can't sin, because if we go back to Matt 5:6, the disciples are blessed if they 'hunger and thirst for righteousness'. Verse 7 states, 'Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy' (NIV). They are not yet completely merciful but will be shown mercy by God if they engage in merciful acts.

Therefore, I conclude that 'perfect' is not the meaning of teleios. In fact, it's a misleading interpretation of the original. The statement of Matt 5:48 comes from Deut 18:13, 'Thou shalt be perfect with the Lord thy God' (KJV), which modern translations render as, 'You shall be blameless before the Lord your God' (NKJV). Here, 'perfect' is the Hebrew, tham, which means 'complete', like a whole number (Lenski).

We are called to reach the goal of maturity in Christ, to become blameless, complete, a person of integrity, in his sight.

Oz
 
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OzSpen

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You may want to go over what I wrote again. Of course anything is possible with Christ, as long as you are acting according to His Holy will. It is impossible for us to be anything close to perfect without Him.

I cannot be completely sinless - perfect - even with Him living in me because of my sinful nature.
 

OzSpen

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We are all sinners saved by Gods grace, Ephesians 2:8. It's that grace that expects us to conform to the image of Christ who is holy and not to be conformed to this world especially if we are walking in Gods Holy Spirit. Romans Chapter 12 explains how we keep ourselves holy and Galatians 5:13-26 and Colossians Chapter 3 teaches us how to be perfect before the Lord while living on earth.

Is this claiming that all Christians can become perfect - absolutely sinless - on this earth?
 
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