God Perfect you in every good thing.
'Now the God of peace, who brought again from the dead the Great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, even our Lord Jesus, make you perfect in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is wellpleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom bo the glory for ever and ever. Amen.' —Hbb. xiii. 20, 21.
fTlHESE two verses contain a summary of the -*- whole Epistle in the form of a prayer. In the former of the two we have the substance of what was taught in the first or doctrinal half— what God has done for us in the redemption in Christ Jesus. In the second of the two verses we have a revelation and a promise of what this God of redemption will do for us; we see how God's one aim and desire is—to make us perfect. We have said before, the word perfect here implies the removal of all that is wrong, and the supply of all that is wanting.9 This is what God waits to do in us. * God maJce you perfect in every good thing.'
We need a large faith to claim this promise. That our faith may be full and strong we are reminded of what God has done for us; this is the assurance of what He will yet do in us. Let us look to Him as the God of peace, who has made peace in the entire putting away of sin; who now proclaims peace; who gives perfect peace. Let us look to Jesus Christ, the Great Shepherd of the sheep, our High Priest and King, who loves to care for and keep us. Let us remember the blood of the eternal covenant, in the power of which God raised Him and He entered heaven; that blood is God's pledge that that covenant with its promises will be fulfilled in our hearts. Let us think of God's bringing Him again from the dead, that our faith and hope might be in God: the power that raised Jesus is the power that works in us. Yes, let us look, and worship, and adore this God of peace, who has done it all, who raised Christ through the blood of the covenant, that we might know and trust Him.
And let us believe the message that tells us: This God of peace, He will perfect you in every good thing. The God who perfected Christ will perfect you too. The God who has worked out such a perfect salvation for us, will perfect it in us. The more we gaze upon Him who has done such wondrous things for us, will we trust Him for this wondrous thing He promises to do in us, to perfect us in every good thing. What God did in Christ is the measure of what He will do in us to make us perfect. The same Omnipotence that wrought in Christ to perfect Him, waits for our faith to trust its working in us day by day to perfect us in the doing of God's will. And on our part, the surrender to be made perfect will be the measure of our capacity to apprehend what God has done in Christ.
And now hear what this perfection is which this God promises to work in us. It is truly Divine, as Divine as the work of redemption: the God of peace, who brought again Christ from the dead, perfect you. It is intensely practical: in every good thing, to do His will. It is uersal, with nothing excluded from its operation: in every good thing. It is truly human and personal: God perfects us, so that we do His will. It is inward: God working in us that which is pleasing in His sight. And it is most blessed, giving us the consciousness that our life pleases Him, because it is His own work: He works in us that which is pleasing in His sight.
'God perfect you to do His will:' this is the conclusion of the whole Epistle. 'To do His will:' this is the blessedness of the angels in heaven. For this the Son became man: by this He was perfected: in this,—'in the which will,' as done by Him, 'we are sanctified.' It is 'To Do His Will' that God perfects us; that God works in us that which is pleasing in His sight.
Believer, let God's aim be yours. Say to God that you do desire this above everything. Give yourself, at once, entirely, absolutely, to this, and say with the Son, 'Lo, I come to do Thy will, 0 my God.' This will give you an insight into the meaning, and the need, and the preciousness of the promise, 'God perfect you to do His will.' This will fix your heart upon God in the wondrous light of the truth: He who perfected Christ is perfecting me too. This will give you confidence, in the fulness of faith, to claim this God as your God, the God who perfects in every good thing.
The perfecting of the believer by God, restoring him to his right condition to fit him for doing His will, may be instantaneous. A valuable piece of machinery may be out of order. The owner has spent time and trouble in vain to put it right. The maker comes: it costs him but a moment to see and remove the hindrance. And so the soul that has for years wearied itself in the effort to do God's will, may often in one moment be delivered from some misapprehension as to what God demands or promises, and find itself restored, perfected for every good thing. And what was done in a moment becomes the secret of the continuous life, as faith each day claims the God that perfects to do that which is wellpleasing in His sight.
Yes, the soul that dares say to God that it yields itself in everything to do His will, and through all the humiliation which comes from the sense of emptiness and impotence, abides by its vow in simple trust, will be made strong to rise and to appropriate and experience in full measure what God has offered in this precious word: The God of peace perfect you, in every good thing, to do His will, working in you that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ.
And it will sing with new meaning, and in fulness of joy, the song of adoring love: To Him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.