Called! Another wonder-full word that, in the Scriptures, follows Chosen. In his letter to the Church at Rome, Paul explained the progression from God foreknowing us, to His choosing us, to His calling us, followed by our being justified and glorified! Those last two words simply mean being made right with God (free from guilt), and crowned with glory (brought to honor or high esteem). (Rom. 8:29-32)
The verb, called, requires some explanation as to who did the calling, who was called, and what was the purpose of the calling. The Scriptures make the answers very clear. It is God Who does the calling, and He calls all those whom He has chosen to be His sons and heirs, conformed to His image and likeness, and prepared to reign with Him in His Kingdom. When we are convicted by His Holy Spirit, repent of our sin, and are “born again” of the Spirit, it is an indication that we are called to be members of His Body which is the Church.
When He saved us, He called us with a holy calling, not according to what we did, or what we deserved, but in accordance with His own purpose and the free grace which was given us in Christ Jesus before the ages began. This was plainly shown to us by the advent of our Savior, Jesus Christ, Who came to put an end to death, and brought life and immortality through His work of Redemption. This is the Gospel – Good News! (2 Tim. 1:9,10)
There is a long list of precious things to which we have been called, to experience the Grace of God.
I think we have not fully understood all of God’s purpose in choosing and calling us, justifying and glorifying us, but He does give us some insights.
First of all, He has called us into His Kingdom and Glory and Virtue, to make us partakers of His Divine nature. “According as His divine power has given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him Who has called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises, that by these we might be partakers of the Divine nature…” Isn’t this the purpose expressed in Genesis when God said, “Let us be making man in our image?” And again in Rom. 8:29: “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren?”
(2 Thess. 2:12-14; 2 Pet. 1:3,4)
The Apostle Paul, in writing to Timothy, instructs him to “fight the good fight of faith and lay hold on eternal life, whereunto he was also called.” The instruction is for us also who are called to receive God’s own Life – the Abundant Life that Jesus came to give us. (1 Tim. 6:12; John 10:10)
“He has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light;” when once we did not have an identity, but now we are “the people of God…for the purpose of proclaiming, or making known, His perfections, virtues and praises”. (1 Peter 2:9,10)
We are called to experience the Peace of God, and Paul admonishes us to “let it rule in our hearts, and to be thankful.” (Col. 3:14, 15)
We are called unto liberty – the freedom wherewith Christ has made us free. Such liberty is to be used to “by love serve one another.” Even as we are called in one hope of our calling, we are to endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in that bond of Peace. (Gal. 5:1; Eph. 4:3, 4)
Not the least of all of these is our calling “unto the fellowship of Jesus Christ our Lord.” (1 Cor. 1:9)
“…Truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son, Jesus Christ.” Can there really be anything more glorious than this? Intimate fellowship with our loving Heavenly Father, and our Savior and Lord Jesus? Even our Elder Brother? (1 John 1:3)
And these things John wrote “that our joy may be full.” (1 John 1:4)
Back to Romans 8: “What shall we then say to these things?
“If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?
“Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? God Who justifies?
Who is he that condemns? Christ Who died? Yes rather, Who is risen again,
Who is even at the right hand of God, Who also makes intercession for us?
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?…..
“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him Who loved us.
“For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 8:28-39)
The love of God is greater far than tongue or pen can ever tell;
It goes beyond the highest star, and reaches to the lowest hell!
The guilty pair bowed down with care God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled, and pardoned from his sin.
Could we with ink the ocean fill, and were the skies of parchment made,
Were ev’ry stalk on earth a quill, and ev’ry man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole, tho’ stretched from sky to sky.
O Love of God, how rich and pure! How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure, the saints’ and angels’ song.
F. M. Lehman
Now may the God of HOPE
fill you with all joy and peace in believing,
so that you will abound in HOPE
by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Rom. 15:13 (NASB)
In Agape, Eulene