Holy, sinless, flawless, without blemish, having no faults, free from defects, always obedient. Right?
Was Jesus perfect? Any one of us who are serious Christians become almost indignant at such a question. Of course Jesus was perfect! A big problem arises, however, when we read verses such as Hebrews 2:10, which says.
“For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation [Jesus] perfect through suffering.”
Jesus was made perfect. For some of you, your brain just exploded. If you’re still alive and with me, let’s look at a few more verses from Hebrews to show this isn’t just a single anomoly that the Bible translators must have missed:
And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him, (Hebrews 5:9)
For the law appoints men in their weakness as high priests, but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son who has been made perfect forever. (Hebrews 7:28)
Clearly, the main culprit here is Jesus. Or, rather, our conception of him is to blame. Here’s how it works: Jesus lived a sinless life; Jesus is perfect; therefore perfection means sinless. However, we enter into a very dangerous place theologically and logically when we start to say that Jesus became sinless. Logically, Jesus becoming sinless is impossible since once you sin the first time, you’re no longer sinless. No amount of non-sinfullness can make you sinless. Theologically, Jesus becoming sinless is heresy since “in him the fullness of God was pleased to dwell” (Col 1:19), and God is by definition without sin.