Notes for my writing

This blog is made up of notes on the gospel as found in the only true and living church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This includes notes that are either excerpts from or ideas for books I either have in draft or may yet write.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

What do the scriptures say about being "perfect"

Sometimes I find it interesting not so much to comment on something, but to simply gather together the witnesses and let them speak on the matter. And that is what I intend to do in this post. My topic is perfection.

It is true, and important to note, that the scriptural meaning of the word "perfect" may be different than the way we use it, just as the scriptural meaning of the word "pride" is different than the way we use it. If so, we need to seek out what the scriptural meaning is, so we can understand the text placed before us for our salvation.

But of this we can be sure: when our language disagrees with the scriptures than we must correct our language, not correct the scriptures.

If the scriptures say "nobody is perfect and God doesn't expect us to be" then let us stand by that statement even if we have to die for it. Let us resound that statement to the heavens if that be the case. And if the scriptures say something else, then let us stand by that with our very lives instead. And let us boldly declare that instead.

I will not comment further. I am simply going to quote, and quote, and quote. And you can decide for yourselves, and I will decide for myself, what to think of this matter.

The scriptures:
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2 Nephi 9:23 And he commandeth all men that they must repent, and be baptized in his name, having perfect faith in the Holy One of Israel, or they cannot be saved in the kingdom of God.

Jacob 5:12 And now, beloved, marvel not that I tell you these things; for why not speak of the atonement of Christ, and attain to a perfect knowledge of him, as to attain to the knowledge of a resurrection and the world to come?

3 Nephi 12:48 Therefore I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect.

Ether 3:20 Wherefore, having this perfect knowledge of God, he could not be kept from within the veil; therefore he saw Jesus; and he did minister unto him.

Moroni 10:32 Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ , ye can in nowise deny the power of God.
33 And again, if ye by the grace of God are perfect in Christ, and deny not his power, then are ye sanctified in Christ by the grace of God, through the shedding of the blood of Christ, which is in the covenant of the father unto the remission of your sins, that ye become holy, without spot.

D&C 50:24 That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth bright and brighter until the perfect day.

D&C 107:42 From Adam to Seth, who was ordained by Adam at the age of sixty-nine years, and was blessed by him three years previous to his (Adam's) death, and received the promise of God by his father, that his posterity should be the chosen of the Lord, and that they should be preserved unto the end of the earth;
43 Because he (Seth) was a perfect man, and his likeness was the express likeness of his father, insomuch that he seemed to be like unto his father in all things, and could be distinguished from him only by his age.

D&C 128:15 And no, my dearly beloved brethren and sister, let me assure you that these are principles in relation to the dead and the living that cannot be lightly passed over, as pertaining to our salvation. For their salvation is necessary and essential to our salvation, as Paul says concerning the fathers - that they without us cannot be made perfect - neither can we without our dead be made perfect.

Moses 8:27 And thus Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord; for Noah was a just men, and perfect in his generation; and he walked with God, as did also his three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

Genesis 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.
2 And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly

Deuteronomy 18:13 Thou shalt be perfect with the Lord thy God.

1 Kings 8:61 Let your heart therefore be perfect with the Lord our God, to walk in his statues, and to keep his commandments, as at this day.

Matthew 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

Matthew 19:21 Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.

Luke 6:40 The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.

John 17:22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

2 Corinthians 12:7 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

2 Corinthians 13:11 Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.

Galatians 2:2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?

Ephesians 4:11 And he gave some, apostles: and some prophets; and some evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

Philippians 3:14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
15 Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.

Colossians 1:28 Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:

Colossians  3:12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.

1 Thessalonians 3:9 For what thanks can we render to God again for you, for all the joy wherewith we joy for your sakes before our God;
10 Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?

JST 2 Timothy 3:16 And all scripture given by inspiration of God, is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for ocrrection, for instruction in righteousness:
17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

JST Hebrews 7:19 For the law was administered without an oath and made nothing perfect, but was only bringing in of a better hope; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
20 Inasmuch as this high priest was not without an oath, by so much was Jesus made the surety of a better testament
21 (For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek;)

Hebrews 9:9 Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience;
10 Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.

Hebrews 10:1 For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect.

JST Hebrews 11:40 God having provided some better thing for them through their sufferings,for without sufferings they could not be made perfect.

Hebrews 12:22 But ye are come unto the mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,
23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,
24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things that that of Abel.
25 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:

Hebrews 13:20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasing covenant,
21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

JST Jame 1:3 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers afflictions;
3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

James 3:2 For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same is a perfect man, and able also to bridle the whole body.

1 Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.

Revelation 3:2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die; for I have not found thy works perfect before God.


I quote here, as well, uses of a peculiar phrase used repeatedly in the scriptures. It is the phrase "just men made perfect". They are possibly similar in meaning to the quotation "for Noah was a just men, and perfect in his generation". Certainly they are "made perfect through Jesus the mediator of the new covenant", but I don't think that means that they are either twinkled into better men than they were or that they are merely made perfect in the sense that their wrong actions are excused, like a teacher giving someone 100% by intentionally skipping the questions he answered wrongly.

D&C 76:69 These are they who are just men made perfect through Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, who wrought out this perfect atonement through the shedding of his own blood.

D&C 129:1 There are two kinds of beings in heaven, namely: Angels, who are resurrected personages, having bodies of flesh and bones -
2 For instance, Jesus said: Handle me and see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me hamve.
3 Secondly: the spirits of just men made perfect, they who are not resurrected, but inherit the same glory.

D&C 129 4 When a messenger comes saying he has a message from God, offer him your hand and request him to shake hands with you.
5 If he be an angel he will do so, and you will feel his hand.
6 If he be the spirit of a just man made perfect he will come in his glory; for that is the only was he can appear -


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