March 13th Daily Discussion

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We're reading Romans 3:1-20 today.

What do you mean I'm not perfect??!?!? Romans 3:20 is crystal clear that none of us are capable of living a sinless life and that no matter how much we "work" at it, we won't be justified or made right with God. I get that. Yet it seems like we still try really hard to attain perfection. So is that good, is it bad? What are your thoughts? Tami W.

P.S. I really like how the New Living Translation puts verse 20. "For no one can ever be made right with God by doing what the law commands. The law simply shows us how sinful we are." Romans 3:20 (NLT)

*Also, Dr. Kroll is doing a 4-week study through Romans right now on Back to the Bible. I know all of us doing P4 are further ahead in our reading of Romans, but you can always check out our program archives to get video or audio of these programs.

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I like this book. I like the perspective it places on our lives and I believe that in our efforts to attain "perfection" can often be misleading, especially for those not being followers of Christ. Keeping in mind that achieving perfection means being Christ-like can draw you closer to accordance with His laws. In opposite, self-fulfillment and vanity are certainly the downfall when working toward perfectionism is the goal if doing it for one's self.

I often become very frustrated knowing that I often continue to do wrong by His law and will. It's a never ending process of growing and learning and I'm so thankful for the gift of redemption that God has sent to us through Jesus.

I believe scripture tells us that the whole purpose of our lives is to "work at" becoming perfect -- or what would perhaps be better termed "attaining wholeness" -- which is His ultimate purpose since we were created in His likeness. Although because we are human and bent toward sin we will never attain this completely on earth in our physical lifetime on earth, yet the "exercise" of our lives is still to try. We will be perfected when we are bound with Him beyond this world, but His will for us in the present is to achieve NOT OUR IDEA of perfection, but His ... "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength and love your neighbor as yourself." If we truly practiced this, we would be as close to perfection -- or wholeness -- as this lifetime allows. With hope and faith ...

Hi Tami,
I read my last comment, sorry if I sounded a little snippy, that was not my intention, i'm a nice guy really, just wanted to sound the alarm on a common mistake in reading the scriptures, because on that mistake cults are formed.

I'm really thankful for you and your ministry and pray that more people will be blessed because of it. I for one really need help in being consistent with my scripture reading.

Anyway, that's a very good thoughtful question you asked, why do we seem to try so hard to be perfect?

I've been thinking about this and I know one thing for sure is that I didn't have this desire to be good, before I became a Christian. I lived, think, talked and acted however I wanted.

But something happened the moment I met Jesus and have a personal relationship with Him, and it makes sense now because the bible spoke of it as being "born again" & being a "new creation" in Christ, "the old has gone, the new has come!" as emphatically said in the 2ndCorinthians. And in the book Romans it talks about how we are "made righteous".
If we tie it all together it makes perfect sense, a thief would steal, a cat will meow and chase mouse and do cat things, or a dog would bark and do dog things, they do what they do because that's who/what they are. And when we are "made rigteous" that's who we are that's our "new identity" because we are a "new creation" and so we do things that are done by a righteous person.

But the new question is, why do I fail to do it all the time? I'll be first to admit I fail to do the right things, more often than I'd like to admit.

But if you think about it, a thief doesn't alway succeed in stealing, a cat doesn't always act like a cat especially when they're old they just sleep all the time, or a dog won't always do dog things. And the amazing thing, is that I'm at peace with who I am, because I know I'm not who I am because of what I did or do, I am who I am because of what God did for me and to me. He "made me righteous" and I'm forever grateful and will praise Him.

Is that good, is it bad, when we try to be perfectly good? I think it can be both, it's good because that's what we're supposed to be doing, it's in our "spirtual DNA" to be righteous if we've truly been "born again" and God's name is praised because of it.

It's bad when we do it to elevate ourself over others and think that we are doing God a favor, that's when pride creeps in and legalism shows its ugly head, in the end our good works are "filthy rags" as God described it.

I think doing good works should always be to promote God and further His Kingdom, through sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and for God to get all the glory He deserves.

"...let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." Matthew 5

Hi Tami,
After I made a comment for yesterday, regarding my old sin nature, The not perfect side of me I don't like. I read your comment for today’s- march 13th. LOL.

Your comments keep my attention and help me. The Human part of me that likes to show itself in the never ending battle with my Spirit, but loses out when the empowering of the Holy Spirit of Gods Grace helps me win out over my flesh. I will continue to feed my spirit the word. With the help of others brought along side we become stronger and will continue to win. In the game we played as children “Red Rover, by locking arms together we became stronger than just holding hands, so when the other team who would send one of there team members running to try to break through, and take one of our team back with them, would then not be able to break through. Praise God the wonderful Team God is building. As we suit up and go to practice, putting our heart into our practice, we will learn how to have victory in Jesus.

Hi Tami,

I Thank alexb, For Bringing up Pride. which is such a stumbling block for many of us, and comes in many shapes and sizes. even shaped as Selfish ambition.
And this reminds me of the Parable of the Sower. I want to be the good ground mentioned in Matt: 13:8

Pride to me is like Big Rocks in the soil that is being Tilled, I recently started using a tiller to Till the soil for our garden, a big rock could a lot of damage. Prolong the process and maybe even keep me from having a good garden. May my eyes be open to the truth of Gods Word and with his help remove all the Rocks ( of Pride and Selfish Ambition )from my ground so the tilling process can continue. This by God’s Grace in time will yield a good harvest. But, I still need to remember that even after the seeds have been planted the garden will still need adequate water and son light. Praise God for his abundant wisdom, Seaming at times very complicated, but truly very simple.

Jerry touch on a very good point, God did not only made us righteous, he also made us a to be part of His family, and families do good works together & individually not to serve their own interest but to serve the interest of the whole family.
I know it's getting away from the main topic, but I just want to point that out...
So can we call ourserlves "the righteous brothers"? ha.ha.ha.
sorry, can't help it.

Hi Tami-

The following is something I was talking with God about after a two week stay in the hospital. It dawned on me that He allowed me to share in suffering that He might use me as a vessel to share His truth with others during that time. My thought during that time was, Who am I to be used by a perfect and holy God. During that stay, I was allowed to see my depravity. I am sure not the entirety of how ugly my heart is, but enough that I saw God's holiness to a degree I hadn't seen before.

I never thought of myself as perfect nor even close, but had never been aware how far from that mark I truly was. The love of God from that vantage point was seriously humbling.

Who am I?, who AM I? God, who am I that the most holy and perfect, most high God of all creation should consider me? How vast and grand you are! You greatness is described as setting forth the universe by the expanse of your hand. The expanse of your Hand!

Who AM I? In comparison, I am less than nothing. I could compare it to the tiniest most minute bacterium spore that can only be seen by the scientific community with the most powerful magnification equipment. That would be like me compared to You.

God, who am I, that You should be mindful of me? Who am I that You would plan and purpose me, the smallest of all creation, take special tender care to embroider me as a fine tapestry and knit me together in a sceret hiding place leaving nothing to chance in all Your plan for me.

God, who am I that before the foundation of the earth, You knew me, every hair on my head, as of yet none of them had grown. Just who am I God? The great and awesome God of the Universe and all creation. You set me into being before any of my days were numbered and called me by Your name, establishing me as part of your royal priesthood.

Me??? Who am I, What am I, God? That You would leave the majesty and splendor of all honor, subject Yourself to the most vulnerable of all forms, a developing human embryo, and suffer the plight of man to take a punishment that only I deserve. Oh God, who am I? You died in my place so You could delight Yourself in me. You who knew no sin, became sin that I desire to honor You? Who am I?!

As though that is not enough, You make me to be a joint heir with Your Son who did all the work so I could desire You and be reconciled to the one I spurned. Who am I, God, that you should even want to love me? I am evil and wicked through and through, there is no good thing about me. Who am I to have a perfect and holy God be interested in me?

God, I'm trying to do the math, but 2 plus 2 keeps adding up to 3.

Yes, God... Yeah, I guess that is the point, it isn't about me at all, it's all about Who You are.

I guess this is where I came to understand that I can not be perfect. Since I was born in sin, that will be with me until this fleshly body is no longer my tent. The best I can do is surrender myself to God's will. That in and of itself humbles me. It also takes alot of strain off me. Maybe that is part of what Jesus refered to when He said His yoke is easy. I'd rather enter His peace than try my form of perfection. Being is greater than doing. I will 'be' for God, rather than feverishly strive at what I think He wants and surrender to what He has commissioned me to do.

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About Me

Hi, my name is Tami Weissert, the P4 facilitator and the "voice" behind the blogs. I'm passionate about helping people grow spiritually and actively encourage Bible engagement through conference speaking and writing. I also served as co-host of the Back to the Bible radio program for over 8 years. A little about me. I'm married to Jeff, and we love scuba diving, playing with our 3 dachshunds and going to Husker football games. I also love growing orchids, singing and Diet Pepsi. I hope you'll join in the conversation as we read the Bible and grow together.

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This page contains a single entry by Tami W published on March 12, 2009 10:32 PM.

March 12th Daily Discussion was the previous entry in this blog.

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