THE HOPE OF OUR CALLING
(Imperial College, 1980)
One of the things I personally think the Church world today as a whole is totally ignorant of is the hope of our calling,
Why has the Father brought us forth?
The Lord Jesus Christ defeated Satan on the cross once and for all, yet we still need to fight the good fight of faith to create the reality of His victory in our lives.
Why? Why is it that when we get saved and become the children of God, we don’t just go straight to heaven?
God loves us, we are His children, it is only reasonable that we should be where He is.
Why does He leave us here?
The answer to this question and others will help us to understand the HOPE OF OUR CALLING.
Some of them have fairly obvious answers; for example, it is necessary we are here to preach the Gospel and get men saved. Some of the other questions have answers not immediately obvious.
In Eph.1:15-23, Paul tells us the prayer he is praying for the Ephesian Church (this prayer belongs to all of us). He says:
Ephesians 1:17-18: That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,
The hope of our calling is not, apparently, very obvious. It cannot be grasped with natural human reasoning. We require wisdom and revelation from above, obviously from the Holy Spirit through the Word (knowledge of Him). This hope of our calling needs to be known in our everyday lives.
What is the hope of our calling? Well, let us look at the scriptures and see what God expects of us.
Matthew 5:13 KJV: Ye are the salt of the earth…
Matthew 5:14 KJV: Ye are the light of the world…
Matthew 5:16 KJV: Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
We are the salt of the earth and the light of the world. If the world is in a mess, it is not the world’s fault, it is ours. We need to rise to the challenge. Look at verse 16. We need to do good works so that our Father will be glorified. Now, when we talk of good works, people usually think of donating to charities, giving to the poor etc. Those are good works, and I encourage them and recommend them. But my brother and sister, if these were all the good works we are to do, then other religious sects can do the same good works. Nobody would notice the difference, and our Father would not be glorified as He should be. The Lord Jesus Christ was talking about some other things here.
John 14:11-14 KJV: Believe me that I [am] in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake. (12) Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater [works] than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
Jesus is telling His disciples here that, “If you do not believe I am from God and that God is in Me and I am in Him, simply because I told you, at least the works (miraculous signs and wonders) should convince you. You know friends, that is what convinced people that the Lord Jesus was from God. Remember Nicodemus in
John 3:2 KJV: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto Him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a leader come from God; FOR NO MAN CAN DO THESE MIRACLES THOU DOEST, EXCEPT GOD BE WITH HIM.
Now, the Lord is telling us here that he that believeth on Him (any born again, child of God) can do the same things He did, and He is also implying here from vs. 11 that if this is done, people will believe that we are from God. This agrees perfectly with Matthew 5:16 quoted above. These are the good works the Lord is talking about. The Christian walk is a supernatural, miraculous one. We are supernatural children, of a supernatural Father with a supernatural Lord, the Lord Jesus Christ.
When the Church world as a whole knows this and starts to act like it is so, the world will wake up and take notice of God and the Lord Jesus Christ. Right now, they think Christianity is just another religion.
Going back to the Word. John 14: 13, 14 tells us exactly how we can see the supernatural work in our everyday lives.
John 14:13-14: And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. (14) If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
The secret is in the name of Jesus. There are good books on this, and it is a subject on its own. But just to briefly touch on this: we need to believe on the name of Jesus, the power and the authority invested in that name. We need to use that name, to speak that name, to command in that name, and signs and wonders will become an everyday occurrence in our midst. You know John said something about this in:
1John 5:13 KJV: These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.
Notice this: first, he says, you should believe on the name of Son of God, and so because of that know that ye have eternal life. Then he says, you should believe on the name of Son of God. He is talking about two things here. We need to believe on the Lord Jesus to be born again and thus to have eternal life. But it is something else to believe on His name, in using it to perform signs and wonders. This is what John, or more accurate, the Spirit through John is telling us: ‘Believe on the power and authority of the name of Jesus’. When we start doing this, the supernatural will be as natural to us as a fish swimming in water.
Remember, it is faith in the name that makes the passive power of the Holy Spirit spring into action. And faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word. No wonder Paul says, we need a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him. This knowledge is in the Word, the spirit of wisdom and revelation is given by the Holy Ghost. We need to study and meditate in God’s Word along these lines, and then to act. We must not be hindered by circumstances; if you have someone in need, like a loved one is sick or in bondage, speak to the sickness or devil in the name of Jesus. Do it boldly. To recap, first meditate in the Word on the name, get it into your spirit. Then act boldly, speak boldly. When you this, you will see the glory of the Lord. Halleluyah!
Yes! We are talking about the hope of our calling. So, firstly and mainly, it is to live in the realm of the supernatural. That is our natural realm, we should stay there, and we shall by God’s grace of which we have received an abundance (Rom.5: 17). If you believe it, say Amen.
Another area, which struck me recently concerning the hope of our calling, is found in:
Ephesians 3:10 AMP: [The purpose is] that through the church the complicated, many-sided wisdom of God in all its infinite variety and innumerable aspects might now be made known to the angelic rulers and authorities (principalities and powers) in the heavenly sphere.
God wants to manifest His wisdom to the devil, his minions and angels through us. That is a wonderful challenge. Isn’t it? Glory to God!
In the light of this, 1Cor.1:30 takes on a new light:
1 Corinthians 1:30 KJV: But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom,
Look at verse 24: But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
Colossians 2:8-10 KJV: Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. (9) For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. (10) And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
We have everything we need in Jesus. We have fullness of wisdom in Him.
Look at Colossians 3:1-2: If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. (2) Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
Brethren, we need to be conscious that there is a vast wealth of spiritual knowledge to be found in the Lord Jesus. These scriptures are telling us about something, I do not think many people have ever really ventured into. The very wisdom of God, the things above. These are known by revelation by the Holy Ghost through the Word – meditating in the Word and being quiet and alone with God. Remember Paul’s experience in 2Cor.12:1-6.
I am sure there is a mine of untouched wealth, waiting to be discovered. I am not saying to go and seek visions (one that can open up to satanic deception). I am talking about meditating in the Word and spending time with God. I am sure He will reward our efforts richly. This is another important aspect of the hope of our calling. God wants us to share of His wisdom and understanding. God is asking us to rise up to the challenge, leave the mundane things here, set your mind on things above. What a benefit it will be to the Church and for that matter, the world! This is God’s dream brethren. I don’t know about you, but this is what my life is all about, as far as being here on earth is concerned. I am going to fulfill the Hope of my Father’s calling.
Remember what the Spirit said through Peter in
1Peter 1:12 KJV: Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.
Like I said, our Father expects angels to learn things from us; we really need to grow in spiritual wisdom. After all, how do you expect people who are not spiritually enlightened to judge angels (spiritual beings) and the world? Let’s look at
1Corinthians 6:2,3 KJV: Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? (3) Know ye not that we shall judge angels? How much more things that pertain to this life?
Verse 3 here implies that we will be able to deal with affairs here and up there. And I do not suppose if you remain dull here, when we get to heaven its just going to be imparted to you. Remember we shall all stand before the Lord and be judged as to what we did with the vast resources He placed at our disposal. Let us realise the hope of our calling.
Ecclesiastes 5:4 KJV: When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for [he hath] no pleasure in fools…
Our Father has no pleasure in fools. He has given us everything to make us wise, if we don’t use it, He will still love you, but He will have no pleasure in you. Remember, everything we get from God is through faith, and without faith it is impossible to please Him.
In conclusion, all I am saying is simply expatiating on what Paul says in
Colossians 1:27 KJV: To whom God would make known what [is] the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is CHRIST IN YOU, THE HOPE OF GLORY!
HALLELUYAH! It is Christ complete in us that is the hope of our calling, we fully grown into Him, perfectly conformed to His image. God would not ask us to do something we couldn’t do, would He? No! He wouldn’t! It is Him after all at work within us both to will and to do of His good pleasure. We are His pleasure, we are His will, and we are His glory. He has done all He can for us (now think about that!). Is God limited?
Then we can ask, ‘Are you and I limited?’ I do not believe that for one second! Yes, I shall not disappoint my Father and I hope you will not too! Can I have an ‘Amen’? …Amen