“Why isn’t the world perfect?” This was an interesting question which surprised me. I did not have a ready answer but I responded with another question, “What would the world or people look like if they were perfect? ” To be perfect is not necessarily the same thing to everyone so we need to agree on the meaning.
Some dictionary meanings given are; free from faults or defects; as good as it is possible to be; lacking nothing essential to the whole. These are helpful but we also need a standard to measure everything by. What does it mean for the world or people to be as good as it is possible to be? There are as many answers as there are people.
There is only one unchanging standard for determining what is good or perfect and it is found in the Word of God. One of the standards, called the golden rule, is “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Although there are some people who try to live that, not everyone does, so our world and humanity is imperfect and not good.
But there is a perfect world coming, one that is as good as it is possible to be. That perfect world will be filled with perfect people who are free from faults and defects. “Eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, nor has it entered into the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.” 1 Cor 2:9 Can we even imagine?
Genesis 1 says, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” He made the sun, moon and stars, the vegetation and all living creatures and He said it was good. He made man in His image, as a reflection of Himself and breathed life into his body, soul & spirit. Then God planted a garden in Eden and He put the man, Adam in it.
Finally God made Eve to be Adam’s female companion and God said that everything was very good. It was good but it wasn’t perfect because the serpent, (devil, Satan, Rev 12:9) was there. He deceived Eve and she and Adam disobeyed God. The sin of disobedience brought upon them and all of creation, the consequence of death!
As their bodies were no longer clothed in God’s glory they knew they were naked. Adam had enjoyed close fellowship with God, walking and talking together in the garden but now when he heard God’s voice he felt shame and he hid. As a result of Adam’s disobedience nothing was good anymore. All of creation was under a curse!
Mankind, animals, nature, vegetation and all of creation was forever changed. Their life from now on would be difficult and everything would deteriorate and eventually die. God removed them from the garden and He placed cherubim and a flaming sword at the entrance to guard the way to the tree of life.
The basis of their sin was that Adam and Eve wanted something different than what God wanted for their life. They didn’t trust God and didn’t believe that God’s plan for them was the best. Since then in every human heart there is that same cancer cell of rebellion that says I want something different than what God wants for me.
But God had a plan for their redemption and the eradication of evil forever. In sentencing Satan , God pronounced a curse on him saying, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall crush you on the head and you shall bruise him on the heel.”
Romans 5:12 “Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned -” Galatians 4:4-5 says, “When the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, …in order that He might redeem those who are under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.”
Romans 6:23 “The wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” When the time was right God sent His Son, Jesus, into this world, to be born as a perfect, sinless baby to a virgin named Mary. Laying aside His divinity He took on the form of humanity and came to do the will of His Father in heaven.
Born in Bethlehem and raised in Nazareth, He lived in subjection to His earthly parents, growing in favor with God and man. Except for once when he was twelve years old we don’t hear much about Him until He was thirty years old. Then He was baptized in the Jordan river, the Holy Spirit came upon Him and the voice of His Heavenly Father said, “Thou art My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased.”
After He had overcome the devil’s temptations in the desert, He returned to Galilee preaching the gospel, casting out demons, healing the sick and doing many miracles. He chose twelve men as disciples to whom He could entrust His work after He was gone, and for three years He taught them how to live by God’s kingdom principles.
Wicked men who did not believe He was the Son of God, had Him arrested, tried and convicted as a criminal. He was mocked, whipped and nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men. In the plan and foreknowledge of God He died, crushing the head of Satan, and redeeming us from the curse. But God raised Him from the dead!
He spent the next forty days preparing His disciples for His departure and return to heaven. Then He gathered them together and gave them final orders not to leave Jerusalem but to wait for the Father’s promise. They would then be baptized with the Holy Spirit, Who would empower them to be His witnesses to the whole earth.
As His disciples were looking on, He was lifted up and a cloud received Him out of their sight. Suddenly, two men in white clothing stood beside them and said, “Why are you looking into the sky? This same Jesus Who has been taken up from you into heaven will return in just the same way in which you saw Him go into heaven.” Acts 1:10-11
Ten days later, on the day of Pentecost, as they were all together in one place, the Holy Spirit filled them and they began speaking in other languages. As Peter preached the gospel, the people’s conscience was smitten and they said, “What shall we do?” His reply was, “Repent, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:1-41
“For the promise is for you and your children, and for all who are far off, as many as the LORD our God shall call to Himself.” All who repent and receive Christ’s provision of salvation will be indwelt by the Holy Spirit Who will empower them to change. They are not perfect yet but they are born again spiritually with a new heart and nature.
OUR PERFECT BODIES
One day Jesus will return, “He will descend with a shout, with the voice of an archangel and with the trumpet of God. The dead in Christ will rise first, then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the LORD in the air, and thus shall we always be with the LORD.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
We shall not rise with earth bound, flesh and blood bodies but we will be changed. We will have perfect, imperishable bodies fit for heaven. 1 Corinthians 15:42-53 says, “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable,…we shall not all sleep (die), but we shall all be changed. For this perishable must put on the imperishable and this mortal must put on immortality.”
Philippians 3:20-21 says Jesus will transform our bodies into conformity with His body. The kind of body we will have will be like the body of Jesus after His resurrection. In John 20:26 we read that the disciples were in a room with closed doors and suddenly Jesus appeared and in Luke 24:31 He disappeared while talking to His friends.
In his book, “Beyond the Cosmos,” Hugh Ross brings insight into what our changed bodies may be like. Right now, from birth to death we exist in the four dimensions of length, width, height and time. In the new creation, our bodies will have different characteristics and capacities. We will be extradimensional and Romans 8:18-21 says creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay.
Our new habitation will be free of natural and man made disasters and crime, as nothing unclean and no one who practices abomination (detestable things) shall come into it. Sorcerers, immoral persons, murderers, idolaters, prostitutes (males called dogs in Deut 23:18) and everyone who loves and practices lying will not be there. The devil, the cowardly and the unbelieving will not be there, and there shall be no curse.
God will dwell among His people and He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There shall no longer be any death, mourning, crying or pain. They shall not hunger nor thirst any more, neither shall the sun beat down on them. There shall no longer be any night. There will be no need of a lamp, nor light from the sun or moon because the Lord God will illumine them with His glory.
We will recognize each other. Moses and Elijah were recognized when they appeared at the transfiguration of Jesus. Matt 17:3. We will also have perfect love and intimate fellowship with one another without sex, sexuality or marriage. Matt 22:29-32. War and fear will not be there. Isaiah 65 says the wolf and the lamb will graze together and the lion shall eat straw like an ox.
Whether we will live in the new heaven, the new earth or the new Jerusalem, only those whose names are found written in the book of life, who have trusted Jesus Christ as their Savior, will be there. The people who are there have overcome the devil because of the blood of the Lamb, Jesus, and because of the word of their testimony and they were willing to die for their faith.
John 14:1-3 Jesus told His disciples, “Let not your heart be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in Me. I am going to prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto myself, that where I am there you may be also.” As perfect people we will live forever in a perfect place! Paradise!