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December 6, 2017, 11:05 AM


There is a story that tells of a man who would shoot arrows at the side of his barn.  One day, a passerby saw that the man seemed to have hit the very center of the bullseye of each target painted on the side of his barn.  The passerby commented on the accuracy of the shooter and how extraordinary a feat he had accomplished.  When asked by the passerby how he became such a good aim, he humbly replied that he first shot the arrows and only after that he would draw the target around where the arrow came to rest.  A definition of one of the words translated “sin” is “to miss the mark,” as in to miss the target.  Peter, in his first letter, reminds us of the target we are to aim for.  He calls followers to be holy as the Lord is Holy.  Anything other than perfect holiness is to miss the mark.  Obviously, we are all sinners and there is no way we will ever be able to be holy to the level of perfection as God.  Even the holiest human in all of history has found themselves to be missing the mark of perfect holiness.  So how do we correct this missing of the mark?  Well, since God sets the standard and it has been set from eternity past, we can’t simply move the target to accommodate our efforts.  God establishes the target and the directions of how to hit the target in His word.  The Scriptures are our training manual to know best how to hit the bullseye of perfection.  Just reading the manual isn’t enough, there is practice required as well.  The Word should impact our actions in a manner that hones our aim at perfection.  A person who studies the manual and practices what it says faithfully has a much higher probability of hitting the target than one who doesn’t.  Another way to increase the chance of hitting the bullseye is to simply move closer to the target.  If Christ is the example we are to follow and thus the target of perfection we are to aim for, then He is the one we need to move closer toward.  That is not done by legalistic religiosity, but by falling in love with Jesus.  Love motivates us to read His word and practice what it says causing a much-improved aim.  It is only by the grace of God and His gift of Salvation through Christ that anyone is able to find their arrow true to the mark. 


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