Become What You Are: Spiritual Formation According to the Sermon on the Mount

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We Grow by Eating

Therefore, there are Christians, many Christians, who believe that, indeed, it is possible for a person to reach a state of moral perfection in this life. The mainstream of Christianity, however, has resisted the doctrine of perfectionism chiefly because we see the record of the greatest saints in biblical history and in church history who to a person confessed the fact that they, to their dying day, struggled with ongoing sin in their lives. Not the least of which, of course, was the apostle Paul, who talked about his ongoing struggle with sin. Can a person be perfect?

Theoretically, the answer to that is yes.

Sermon on the Mount - Wikipedia

The New Testament tells us that with every temptation we meet, God gives us a way to escape that temptation. He always gives us enough grace to overcome sin. So sin in the Christian life, I would say, is inevitable because of our weakness and because of the multitude of opportunities we have to sin.

But on a given occasion, it is never, ever necessary. So in that sense, we could theoretically be perfect, though none of us is.

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Become What You Are is the insider's guide to Jesus' agenda—the goal of spiritual formation. This goal is a transformed heart, a change at the inner center of our being, that leads to a life that pleases God.

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Or, as a shorthand, it means becoming like Christ. This unique approach to the most famous sermon juxtaposes analysis with practice sections throughout. In the analysis sections, the essential meaning of the text—what Jesus and Matthew were driving at—is explained for each section of the sermon. A practice section follows, calling you to engage Jesus' meaning for yourself.

By understanding what the Sermon meant in its context and how you can take it seriously in this modern world, as a follower of Jesus, you will be able to become what you are. Salt and Light for a Decaying and Dark World.



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