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Character Beyond Measure

A Brief Contemplation on the Knowledge, Love and Imitation of God

Ideal for those well acquainted with our thought process at Ammi Ruhama Community

The actual overall health of the body of Christ is nothing that one person or a group of people can ultimately measure. This is because we’re not all using the same measuring stick–and no I don’t mean that some people use the Bible and other people some other metric. I mean that we are actively conforming to an infinite number of metrics some of which we are aware of, and others that are subconscious that come through in our poor opinion of people as quickly decided based on these subconscious measures. For instance, a community of God who places a high value on members who speak in tongues as being ‘full of the Spirit,’ will have a high degree of people who attempt and eventually conform to what they are seeing as speaking in tongues, whether or not the Spirit is actually speaking through them. It is the same for prayerfulness, sexual purity, and any other metric we use to try to gauge the health of a group of people. We want to think that it is something as praiseworthy as our active obedience to the Spirit of God, but, actually, active obedience to the Spirit of God would entail that we continue listening. He may well tell us to focus on something other than what we are being told to focus on. Other people may look at us and ask why we don’t go to church, pay our tithe to a human institution, encourage our children to play with the nice little church kids, and decide that we aren’t really good church folk after all–heck we’re not even ‘good living’! If we want to be like God, we must become as immeasurable in our behaviour as He is. God is immeasurable, but not unpredictable, whatever He does He is entirely consistent with His own character, but He is infinitely wise and therefore, even though His character itself is not a surprise we continue to be surprised by its immeasurable purity of form. This is our base difference, we do not have purity of form in any sense of the imagination, our character is a facsimile of His own, and an imperfect one at that.

When we make a manufactured effort towards purity of form in one area over another we render ourselves measurable to that character point. The only specific character points God calls us to are purity, perfection, and mercy all of which require wisdom; specifically God’s wisdom. If we are pure (displaying the whole character of only God in our lives) and perfect (displaying the ways of God without fault) then there is no need to be pedantic about measuring truthfulness or sexual purity because those characters are covered in our pursuit of knowing and imitating God. The word is clear that the one who knows God, loves God and the one who loves God obeys God. If we are deceitful or sexually deviant then the evidence is clear that we do not know God as much as we say we do, or love Him as much as we say or imitate Him as much as we say. Any condemnation therefore, must be based on whether or not we know, love and obey God. But this is no surprise to those who give 1 John its functional value in their lives. We are also called to show mercy as our Father shows mercy. This requires His humility and identification with us, not as being exactly the same (although God through Christ is the same) but through his non-discriminating character. He is love to sinners and to the righteous, He is also judge to sinners and to the righteous. We are called to the merciful side of that consistent, non-discriminating nature.

If we want to be as immeasurable as God is, then we must be willing to let go of measuring other people lest we (and they) become what we measure.

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