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Morning Meditation
“The Divine Summons”
by F. B. Meyer   
June 7th, 2020

"Walk before Me, and be thou perfect." Men have sadly stumbled over that word. They have not erred, when they have taught that there is an experience, denoted by the phrase, which is possible to men. But they have sadly erred in pressing their own significance into the word, and in then asserting that men are expected to fulfil it, or that they have themselves attained it.

"Perfection" is often supposed to denote sinlessness of moral character, which at the best is only a negative conception, and fails to bring out the positive force of this mighty word. Surely perfection means more than -- sinlessness. And if this be admitted, and the further admission be made, that it contains the thought of moral completeness, then it becomes yet more absurd for any mortal to assert it of himself. The very assertion shows the lack of any such thing, and reveals but slender knowledge of the inner life and of the nature of sin. ABSOLUTE SINLESSNESS is surely impossible for us so long as we have not perfect knowledge; for as our light is growing constantly, so are we constantly discovering evil in things which once we allowed without compunction: and if those who assert their sinlessness live but a few years longer, and continue to grow, they will be compelled to admit, if they are true to themselves, that there was evil in things which they now deem to be harmless. But whether they admit it or not, their shortcomings are not less sinful in the sight of the holy God, although undetected by their own fallible judgment. And as to MORAL COMPLETENESS, it is enough to compare the best man whom we ever knew with the perfect beauty of God incarnate, to feel how monstrous such an assumption is. Surely the language of the Apostle Paul better becomes our lips, as he cries, "Not as though I had already attained, or were already perfect; but I follow after." Perhaps in the dateless noon of eternity such words will still best become our lips.

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