One of the first truths that an honest person admits about the nature of humanity, but more specifically themselves, is that nobody’s perfect. Now, the truth that we are not perfect is more likely understood today as meaning that we all make mistakes, but not that we are somehow responsible for the imperfection (the mistakes). Being imperfect sometimes seems miles away from admitting that we are all sinners. When we do something wrong or fail to do the right thing against God or another human being, shouldn’t we admit that our “mistakes” are due to our own negligence?
Could it be that our personal or collective imperfection is somewhat universally satisfying, because we can blame it (imperfection) for our wrongdoing? But our personal and collective sinfulness seems to be repulsive to those who do not believe in a loving and perfect God, because sin speaks of responsibility. It’s okay to be imperfect, but it’s not okay to admit that we are to blame for the sin in our own lives and in the world in general.
However, if we were all really honest with ourselves, we would find that discovering the truth of our personal, collective, and universal sinfulness is much more satisfying than admitting our imperfection. You see, when we admit that we are imperfect, we also admit that there isn’t anything that can be done about it. The same holds true for our personal and collective sinful condition. There really isn’t anything we, in ourselves, can do about it. No matter how hard we try we can’t stop sinning and somehow become perfect.
So, first we must make the connection that our imperfection is due to our own sinfulness, and although we cannot do anything about it, there is someone who could and did do something about it. Jesus Christ, who was and is perfect, came, as God in the flesh, to remove the penalty for our imperfection (sinfulness).
The often times unbearable weight of the guilt, shame, and sorrow that comes from our sinfulness can be removed when we stop saying “nobody’s perfect” and become “perfect nobody’s.” Jesus was perfect, so that we could live life through Him—to gain His righteousness, His perfection. Through Him we can become “perfect nobody’s.”
St. John said it best, “He must increase; I must decrease” (John 3:30). St. John said that because he understood what Jesus told us, “If you want to find our life, then we must lose it” (Matthew 16:25). Jesus was talking about finding Him, and His righteous perfection.
When we finally and truthfully admit that we are imperfect and that only God is perfect, we can begin a journey to discovery: that as we receive Christ and He lives in us, His perfection guarantees our entrance into the God’s Holy (perfect) Kingdom. We are commanded by God to be perfect, just as God is perfect (Matthew 5:48). “Perfect nobody’s” receive their perfect standing from that truly perfect somebody—Jesus Christ!
Let me tell you clearly, no one who is imperfect can gain entrance into God’s Kingdom: “Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:27, NIV). Only those who are “perfect nobody’s” who have received Jesus Christ.
© Paul Dordal, 2014