2013-03-09 – Paul Godfrey – Perfection???

By Paul Godfrey, Audio: mp3youtube

Hebrews 12:12-13 (KJV)
Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; [13] And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed.

Will God perfect us in a twinkling of an eye when Jesus returns, or will Jesus perfect us in this present world?

Synopsis

Numbers 13:27-32 (KJV)
And they told him, and said, We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this is the fruit of it. [28] Nevertheless the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities are walled, and very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there. [29] The Amalekites dwell in the land of the south: and the Hittites, and the Jebusites, and the Amorites, dwell in the mountains: and the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and by the coast of Jordan. [30] And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. [31] But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we. [32] And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched unto the children of Israel, saying, The land, through which we have gone to search it, is a land that eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature.

Is it discouraging to have to be perfect. Are there giants of sin we need to overcome.

If we give up, and go back to Egypt or just wander around in the wilderness, is it less discouraging.

Deuteronomy 1:22-32 (KJV)
And ye came near unto me every one of you, and said, We will send men before us, and they shall search us out the land, and bring us word again by what way we must go up, and into what cities we shall come. [23] And the saying pleased me well: and I took twelve men of you, one of a tribe: [24] And they turned and went up into the mountain, and came unto the valley of Eshcol, and searched it out. [25] And they took of the fruit of the land in their hands, and brought it down unto us, and brought us word again, and said, It is a good land which the Lord our God doth give us. [26] Notwithstanding ye would not go up, but rebelled against the commandment of the Lord your God: [27] And ye murmured in your tents, and said, Because the Lord hated us, he hath brought us forth out of the land of Egypt, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us. [28] Whither shall we go up? our brethren have discouraged our heart, saying, The people is greater and taller than we; the cities are great and walled up to heaven; and moreover we have seen the sons of the Anakims there. [29] Then I said unto you, Dread not, neither be afraid of them. [30] The Lord your God which goeth before you, he shall fight for you, according to all that he did for you in Egypt before your eyes; [31] And in the wilderness, where thou hast seen how that the Lord thy God bare thee, as a man doth bear his son, in all the way that ye went, until ye came into this place. [32] Yet in this thing ye did not believe the Lord your God,

God is pleased when we search out the way to get to heaven… But in finding the way, we have to count the cost… Or idols, all this world… Some will say it is too high.

Basically it comes down to one thing: unbelief.

Hope and courage are essential to perfect service for God. These are the fruit of faith. Despondency is sinful and unreasonable. God is able and willing “more abundantly” to bestow upon His servants the strength they need for test and trial…. – {FLB 156.5}

The Lord commanded Moses to send men to search the land of Canaan, which He would give unto the children of Israel…. After they had spoken of the fertility of the land, all but two spoke very discouragingly of their ability to possess it…. As the people listened to this report, they gave vent to their disappointment in bitter reproaches and wailing. They did not wait to reflect and reason that God, who had brought them out thus far, would certainly give them the land…. – {CC 106.2}
Caleb urged his way to the front, and his clear, ringing voice was heard above all the clamor of the multitude. He opposed the cowardly views of his fellow spies, which had weakened the faith and courage of all Israel. He commanded the attention of the people, and they hushed their complaints for a moment to listen to him…. But as he spoke, the unfaithful spies interrupted him, crying: “We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we.” – {CC 106.3}

Here in the leadership there was a conflict in views.

Because of this, people are discourage and fall into discouragement.

Hebrews 4:1-10 (KJV)
Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. [2] For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it . [3] For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. [4] For he spake in a certain place of the seventh day on this wise, And God did rest the seventh day from all his works. [5] And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest. [6] Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief: [7] Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts. [8] For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day. [9] There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God. [10] For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

Be very careful not to let go of the promises of God.

Sabbath keeping in this text is equated with the heavenly Canan. Sabbath is a token and sign to relying on God to accomplish what he said he would do. He will do what he says as surely as he created this world.

Carnally we can’t do it, but here are some promises that God has given us.

Forget the giants, and the walled cities.. Lets gain courage from the promises. The dos and don’ts can be very discouraging … But this is the giants… We are not to worry about having the strength, but to depend on what God has said.

Promises:

John 1:29 (KJV)
The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

Titus 2:14 (KJV)
Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

1 John 3:4-5 (KJV)
Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. [5] And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.

Christ has the responsibility to take our sins.

Ephesians 5:24-27 (KJV)
Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. [25] Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; [26] That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, [27] That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

Luke 1:67-75 (KJV)
And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying, [68] Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, [69] And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; [70] As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: [71] That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; [72] To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant; [73] The oath which he sware to our father Abraham, [74] That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear, [75] In holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our life.

We are not to be afraid of the giants of sin in our lives.

1 John 5:10 (KJV)
He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.

Romans 3:3-4 (KJV)
For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? [4] God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar;

Does it matter if people say we can’t overcome? If we say that we are calling God a liar.

None need fail of attaining, in his sphere, to perfection of Christian character. By the sacrifice of Christ, provision has been made for the believer to receive all things that pertain to life and godliness. God calls upon us to reach the standard of perfection and places before us the example of Christ’s character. In His humanity, perfected by a life of constant resistance of evil, the Saviour showed that through co-operation with Divinity, human beings may in this life attain to perfection of character. This is God’s assurance to us that we, too, may obtain complete victory. – {AA 531.2}

It is impossible for God to lie, so the only way to not overcome is unbelief.

Before the believer is held out the wonderful possibility of being like Christ, obedient to all the principles of the law. But of himself man is utterly unable to reach this condition. The holiness that God’s word declares he must have before he can be saved is the result of the working of divine grace as he bows in submission to the discipline and restraining influences of the Spirit of truth. Man’s obedience can be made perfect only by the incense of Christ’s righteousness, which fills with divine fragrance every act of obedience. The part of the Christian is to persevere in overcoming every fault. Constantly he is to pray to the Saviour to heal the disorders of his sin-sick soul. He has not the wisdom or the strength to overcome; these belong to the Lord, and He bestows them on those who in humiliation and contrition seek Him for help. – {AA 532.1}

God’s ideal for His children is higher than the highest human thought can reach. “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” This command is a promise. The plan of redemption contemplates our complete recovery from the power of Satan. Christ always separates the contrite soul from sin. He came to destroy the works of the devil, and He has made provision that the Holy Spirit shall be imparted to every repentant soul, to keep him from sinning. – {DA 311.2}

2 Peter 1:3-4 (KJV)
According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: [4] Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

Galatians 3:16 (KJV)
Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.

That land was promised to Abraham and his seed. (Singular) Christ.

Jesus overcame by the promises.. The same way we are to.

Galatians 3:29 (KJV)
And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Galatians 4:1-3 (KJV)
Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all; [2] But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father. [3] Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:

Hebrews 12:11-14 (KJV)
Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. [12] Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; [13] And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed. [14] Follow peace with all men , and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:

Christ rejoiced that He could do more for His followers than they could ask or think. He spoke with assurance, knowing that an almighty decree had been given before the world was made. He knew that truth, armed with the omnipotence of the Holy Spirit, would conquer in the contest with evil; and that the bloodstained banner would wave triumphantly over His followers. He knew that the life of His trusting disciples would be like His, a series of uninterrupted victories, not seen to be such here, but recognized as such in the great hereafter. – {DA 679.2}

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