THE SERVANT GENERAL
THE WAY FORWARD IN CHRIST
CALL AND COVENANT
As Christians we are called to imitate Christ and to be like
God, in whose image and likeness we are created. As such,
it is not just about being good and doing good. It is all
about being perfect. “So be perfect, just as your heavenly
Father is perfect.” (Mt 5:48). How can that happen?
first of all, God Himself enters into a special relationship
with us. We have a covenant relationship. This is a solemn
agreement. On God’s part, “he will be your God”
(Dt 26:17b). For our part, “you will walk in his ways,
observe his statutes, commandments, and ordinances, and obey
his voice.” (Dt 26:17c). When we keep our part of the
agreement, we enter into a very special place: “you
will be a people specially his own, as he promised you”
(Dt 26:18b). Thus we will be a people set apart. To be set
apart is to be holy. “You will be a people holy to the
Lord, your God, as he promised.” (Dt 26:19b).
do we grow in holiness and Christian perfection? We avoid
sin and walk along God’s ways. “They do no wrong;
they walk in his ways.” (Ps 119:3). How are we able
to do that? We look to God’s commands and observe them.
“You have given them the command to observe your precepts
with care.” (Ps 119:4). For us to do this, we must know
God’s commands. To know His commands and His ways, we
must look to His written word, the Bible.
we must read and meditate on the Bible. We must “ponder
all your commandments.” (Ps 119:6b). Second, we must
study what we have read. “I will praise you with sincere
heart as I study your righteous judgments.” (Ps 119:7).
Third, we must then carry out what we have learned and obey
God’s law. “I will observe your statutes”
we study the Bible, we will encounter challenging directives
from God. For example, “love your enemies, and pray
for those who persecute you” (Mt 5:44). Wow. That is
extremely difficult. But see where thinking about and then
obeying God’s law brings us. It sets us apart (that
is, we become holy). “For if you love those who love
you, what recompense will you have? Do not the tax collectors
do the same? And if you greet your brothers only, what is
unusual about that? Do not the pagans do the same?”
are God’s special people. We are in covenant with Him.
We must be different from the world around us. We must be
holy and perfect.