Nearly four thousand years passed since the Hebrew people began the practice of offering a blood sacrifice to atone for sin. Throughout the Old Testament, sacrifices were made to God for a covering of sin. God accepted these sacrifices for a season, but knew that a perfect sacrifice was the only avenue to the eradication of sin. And, in His perfect timing, God demonstrated for the world the personage of perfection. God, the Creator, gifted His creation with His Son. “In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”1 Jesus was and is the perfect sacrifice for sin.
“The word perfect is one of the keywords of the Epistle. It occurs thirteen times.”2 The book of Hebrews speaks of Jesus, the Son of God, not only as perfect, but as needing and achieving perfection. “For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.”3 The Savior of the world was made perfect for His imperfect creation.
Controversies have risen over the truth that Jesus had to be perfected. The fact that He is and was God implies perfection at the onset. “The perfecting of Christ Jesus through suffering does not imply any imperfection in Him. It refers rather to the incompletion of His human experience, which required completion for His qualification as man’s Great High Priest.”4 By necessity, the Son of God must become human in order to save humanity.
Hebrews 5:9 speaks of the perfection of Christ with the use of the Greek word teleiotheis. “And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation.”5 “Before He could become the basis for salvation He had to become totally qualified. τελειωθεὶς [trans....
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