Does Performance Perfection Equal Righteousness?
For John came unto you in the way of righteousness, and ye believed him not; but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him. (Matthew 21:32)
Why did the Pharisees rejected the grace of God, could it be that the concept of grace under-minded their religious system? Not only does religion try to get us to overlook God's love for us, it will also try to get us to hold things against others out of spite and unforgiveness, while God's Word tells us that love keeps no record of wrong: "And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity [love] shall cover the multitude of sins." (1 Peter 4:8)
When a person continues to dwell on things that people have done against them they are eating from the root of bitterness yields to the fruit resentment poisons their heart causing blindness to the love that God has for them rendering them unable to show forgiveness, mercy and the love of God towards people who have wronged them.
Religion is a performance system; it expects people to live up to a religious performance standard of self-righteousness. Perfectionism and religion are bed partners. Perfectionism maintains that doing the do’s and not doing the dont's is the path to righteousness...this causes people to feel guilty and condemned over the pettiest thing that don’t measure up top their standard.
The Gospel is not about perfect, sinless saints...It is about a perfect, sinless Savior who affords us His gift of perfect righteousness and sinless-ness...otherwise we could NEVER be the righteousness of God.