Sunday March 15, 2020
The abiding message of Philippians concerns the nature and grounds of Christian joy. For the imprisoned Paul, true joy was not a surface emotion that depended on favorable circumstances at the moment. It was a deep sense of promise based on the abiding personal relationship with Jesus and the hope he found within his calling to serve His Savior.
We hear a lot these days about people being called in to some type of ministry or service to the Lord. “I’ve been called to preach.”…”I’ve been called out of teaching Sunday School.”…”I’ve been called to correct the pastor.”…”I’ve been called to do nothing…”
But what does it really mean to be called? The term called means, “to be invited, summoned, commissioned, named.” God issues the invitations, summons us to come, commissions us to serve, and names who/what we are called to be. That is the scope of a divine call…and we all have one! We are all called to serve. (See WORD WISDOM for a deeper study of serve)
Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began. (2 Tim.1:8-9)
We must first understand that calls are heavenly initiated and are holy in substance. They are high and upward callings in Christ, that is, they are established in heaven by God the Father through Jesus and our faith in Him (Phil.3:14). He calls us through His grace, in that, He grants to us all things needed to serve Him in our calling (Gal.1:15). We are commanded to walk worthy of our calling and to live worthy of that calling.
Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power, that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thess.1:11-12)
Our lives must be Spirit-filled, Spirit-led, and Spirit-controlled so that our spiritual eyes will be open so see and to be sure of our calling, and to remember the purpose of the call. (2 Pet.1:10). What is the purpose of God’s calling on our lives? We might be surprised by the answer.
But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thess.2:13-14)
Remember what Paul said in verse 12…that Christ might be glorified in us through our call. Wow! In answering the call on our lives to serve God, we are filled and covered with His very glory! Paul tells us that we are being changed glory, to glory, to glory (Eph.4:4). The more we serve within our call, the more we are changed into His image by the glory of God.
This is why the gifting’s and callings in our lives are “without repentance” (Rom.11:29), that is, they not revoked. God’s desire for us to imitate Christ in all His glory is irrevocable! Amen!
Yes, God called. The question is, “Did we answer?”