“The Call: What does it mean?”
Christianity is more than the promise of Heaven through salvation, more than the joy of a dynamic personal relationship with Christ, and more than a meaningful life of fulfilling service. It’s all three! Though we may not fully understand the magnitude of God’s gift to us through Jesus Christ and the responsibilities that come with it when we accept Christ, all of it is ours at salvation.
In the passage below, Jesus uses metaphor to discuss the three-fold nature of His calling to salvation, discipleship, and service, or ministry. First, He offers rest, the kind of spiritual rest that can only be found in salvation through His death and resurrection. Second, He offers discipleship, the learning that takes place when we maintain intimacy with Him. Third, He offers meaningful and fulfilling work, the kind that can be accomplished when we submit and obey.
Most believers only begin to fully understand God’s call on their lives and what comes with it after having been a Christian for a while. Once they appreciate the privilege it is to know Jesus personally and understand that God’s plan for them involves service in His Kingdom, some believers feel the need to surrender to that service publicly. When they do, some churches say they have surrendered to special service or ministry, which, of course, they have, as Christian service is for God’s glory, not ours, making it very special indeed.
However, not all believers who reach this awareness of God’s call on their lives choose to make their decision public. This being true, church members witness fewer public commitments to ministry or special service than they do salvation decisions, causing some to believe that a call to ministry
• is somehow separate from the call of salvation,
• is issued at a point in time that follows salvation, and/or
• is something that only a select few believers receive, not only setting them apart, but somehow setting them above other believers,
none of which is true!
Respond to the following in your journal:
What did you learn through Bible study today?
How were you encouraged? How were you challenged?