When Abram was ninety-nine years old the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless,Genesis 17:1 ESV
From the moment I woke up this morning, I have been thinking about the phrase, “walk before Me and be blameless.” I wonder what Abraham thought when God said that? It’s a difficult command to follow through with, and the time he lied about his wife to protect his own life is one instance where he failed at obeying God.
Now, you might be thinking, it’s a good thing we’re under grace, so we don’t have to keep such challenging requirements. But we would be mistaken; the command to walk blameless before God appears multiple times in the New Testament.
Philippians 1:10 ESV “so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ,”
Ephesians 1:4 ESV “even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love”
Philippians 2:15 ESV “that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,”
Jude 1:24 ESV “Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy,”
Hopefully, these few New Testament verses give you some hope. We are not expected to walk blameless in our own power but through grace and the sanctifying power of the Holy Spirit. When I think about walking blameless before the Lord, my thoughts immediately go to my shortcomings, sins, mistakes, and things I wish I could do over in life. While it is right to examine ourselves and hold ourselves accountable for growing in holiness, we do not need to beat ourselves up once we have repented and are back on the right path.
It is the Lord who will present us faultless before God. Allowing the conviction to do its work brings about repentance and restoration to the narrow path. We know we will fall; we know we will sin. There will be times we don’t resist temptation like we know we should. But in those moments, we have an advocate with the Father, who is faithful and just to forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
The enemy would like nothing more than for us to concentrate on where we’ve missed it in life. God, however, wants us to learn from our past sins, mistakes, and missteps and become stronger. The commands of Scripture are impossible in our strength, but the Holy Spirit empowers us to walk rightly before God on the narrow path.
If you’ve been struggling lately, don’t hide from God, don’t ignore the battle – go to the Lord in prayer, ask for help. Pray the prayer of David in Psalm 51. The Lord wants us to be victorious over sin and walk with Him in holiness; all we need to do is go to Him in times of struggle. There are many promises throughout the Scripture for us to hang on to and engage the enemy. We have the victory in Christ, and the Scripture lays out the battle plan. Engage the fight with the whole armor of God, dust yourself off after your stumbles, get back up when you fall, and keep moving forward.