Moses made it clear to the Israelites that when they entered the Promised Land they were not to imitate the detestablecustoms of the nations they would defeat (18:9). God’s expectation was that they would be virtuous. The Hebrew word for blameless is tamiym. It is used 91 times in the Old Testament and it is echoed in the New Testament by the word telios, which means perfect. Tamiym’s frequent spiritual meaning is blameless, devout or upright. Noah was described as tamiym among his generation (Genesis 6:9). It can also translate as integrity or sincerity as Joshua challenges his countrymen in Joshua 24:14.
Moses sang of God, “The Rock—His work is perfect (tamiym); all His ways are entirely just. A faithful God, without prejudice, He is righteous and true” (32:4). David later sang, “God—His way is perfect (tamiym); the word of the LORD is pure. He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him” (2 Samuel 22:31). Elihu asked Job, “Do you understand how the clouds float, those wonderful works of Him who has perfect (tamiym) knowledge” (Job 37:16). God’s work, way and knowledge are all perfect—an impossible standard modeled by an incredible Father.
Dr. Taylor Halverson noted that Matthew wrote his gospel with the intent of showing his Hebrew readers that Jesus was the new Moses sent by God to reveal salvation. Like Moses, Jesus told His listeners, “Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mat. 5:48). The difference between Moses and Jesus, as we know, is that Jesus Himself was perfect—an impossible standard modeled by an incredible Son.
It is important that we understand the meaning of tamiym. No matter how hard we strive we cannot achieve perfection and so we may be inclined to give up. We conclude God’s demand and expected standard is too great. What we need is David’s understanding: “God is my strong refuge; He makes my way perfect” (tamiym; 2 Sam. 22:33). Oswald Chambers insightfully shared in Now Is It Possible: “Blamelessness is not faultlessness; faultlessness was the condition of the Lord Jesus Christ. We never can be faultless in this life; we are in impaired human bodies. But by sanctification we can be blameless.” Something to think about . . . in reveration!
“The word rendered ‘perfect’ does not mean that moral blamelessness with which we are accustomed to associate it. It connotes whole–heartedness, entire surrender, absolute consecration, up to the measure of light.”—F.B. Meyer in Meet For The Master’s Use
©2021 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)
 HCSB Study Bible, 2010, Holman Bible Publishers