This command can initially be confusing because we associate the word “perfect” with the idea of sinless perfection. However “perfect” here has the idea of growing, maturing, and becoming complete.
Where this command is found:
“For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”
Have you ever thought of how love and maturity walk hand-in-hand? In Matthew 5:46–48, Jesus relates loving our enemies to being perfect as our Father who is in Heaven. The word perfect means complete, with the idea of being mature. This is exactly how God loves us.
A complete or mature love is not based upon what we can get from someone, but instead on what we can give them. God loved us so much that while we were His enemies, He sent His Son to die for us so that we might have new Life in Him. Jesus commands us to love our enemies with this type of love.
Fulfilling the command to Be Perfect is only possible one way: through the life and power of God. As we abide in God’s Word and receive His perfect love, we will be transformed into channels expressing this love to everyone around us, including our enemies. It is through this perfect love that our enemies can experience God’s kindness and care, exposing their need for a personal relationship with Him!
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