Just As You Sent Me Into The World
The Father sent Jesus into the world to bear a true witness of the Father. The Lord Jesus has sent each of His chosen into the world in order to bear a true witness of the Lord Jesus. Such is the calling of the saint.
We hear people say this Christian is called to be a doctor, or that Christian is called to be a construction worker. This is not a scriptural concept. No Christian is called to be a doctor. No Christian is called to be a construction worker.
A Christian may become a doctor or a construction worker in the leading of the Lord. This may be God’s will for him or her. We all must do heartily to the Lord what our hands find to do. But this is not our calling.
Jesus’ calling was not to be a carpenter. Paul’s calling was not to be a tentmaker. Peter’s calling was not to be a fisherman.
Daniel’s calling was not to be a ruler in Babylon. Daniel’s Divine calling was to be a saint and a prophet, a true witness of the Lord. Jesus referred to Daniel as a prophet, not as an administrator of civic affairs, although Daniel was a high-ranking official in Babylon.
The calling of every disciple is to be a saint, a holy one, and a revealer of the Nature and will of Christ. Every other employment is for practical, temporary purposes.
Our calling as a saint, a servant of the Lord, is our true, significant, eternal calling.
The Father did not send Christ into the world to be a carpenter and Jesus did not send any member of the elect into the world to be a plumber. A saint may earn his living by working as a plumber, but that is not his Divine calling. Aquila and Priscilla were not predestined to be tentmakers nor are their names included in the Word of God because of their trade.
The calling of each saint is to reveal the Glory of God in Christ. This does not mean every saint is a preacher or teacher or is called to leave his job and trust in Christ for his wages. It does mean that the foremost responsibility of every member of God’s elect, his purpose for being on the earth, is to reveal Christ in his life and behavior.
Each Christian is called to be part of the Light of the world.
When we study the various endowments listed in the twelfth chapter of the Book of Romans and the twelfth chapter of I Corinthians, we do not find that the Holy Spirit has given to any person the gift of picking figs or tending sheep or any other occupation in keeping with the economic life of the Middle East.
Instead we find that the Holy Spirit of God is interested in tongues, in prophecy, in teaching, in giving, in showing mercy, and so forth. These are the kinds of gifts and ministries that proceed from the Spirit.
Many human beings are born with artistic, academic, or industrial abilities. These are our human endowments. We may spend much or all of our life in such employment. Moses devoted forty years to tending sheep. Whatever we do we should do in faith as to Christ, looking to Him for wisdom and strength in every aspect of our lives.
When we are born again we receive our eternal calling. Our spirit becomes one with the Spirit of God. We enter the ranks of God’s elect. We become an eternal part of the Body of Christ, the Servant of the Lord.
We are baptized by the Holy Spirit into the Body of the Anointed Deliverer. Then the Holy Spirit gives to us one or more of the talents of the Kingdom of God. As we put our talents to work we are given more talents depending on our diligence and wisdom.
The talents of the Kingdom of God are of the Spirit of God. They are supernatural in origin. However, whatever is before us to do in assisting the work of the Lord, whether it be giving, serving, building, helping, is considered a talent for which we will be held responsible even though it is not a spiritual gift. Musical ability is included in the category of nonspiritual gifts.
The gifts of the Spirit of God are supernatural in origin, not inherited, as are human “talents.”
Many people of the world are highly gifted. Such gifts and talents are of the soul. The gifts and talents of the members of the Body of Christ proceed from the Holy Spirit of God, not from the soul or training of a human being.
In our day the human talent of music has been employed so widely in the work of the Gospel that it is viewed as though it were the work of the Holy Spirit. The truth is, music often is used to compensate for the lack of the Spirit of God.
Any true gift of the Spirit will build up the Body of Christ. However, an oratorio or solo, no matter how expertly performed, may do nothing more than entertain the believers and lead them away from the Spirit of God.
Music plays an important role in the activities of the Christian churches just as it will throughout eternity in the Kingdom of God. In our day the Holy Spirit is adding pageantry, mime, drama, and other artistic expressions because of the need for a more active participation in worship, a more vibrant and demanding expression of the things of the Gospel.
Because of the intensity of evil in our environment a church service must consist of much more than the routine singing of a few hymns from a hymnbook followed by a lecture from the pulpit. There must be increasing fire and life during the assemblies if the saints are to stand spiritually in the present darkness.
Artistic and triumphant expression will strengthen and guide the worshipers only if the Spirit of God guides it. It is the responsibility of the elders of the assembly to carefully observe every activity, endorsing and strengthening that which they discern to be of the Spirit of God and preventing that with which they feel uncomfortable. Satan and his demons are always ready to add a few activities of their own, following on the heels of that which the Spirit has provided.
The elders must be strong in the Lord and the people must be obedient to the elders if the several musical and dramatic expressions are to result in true worship and effective portrayal of the Word and will of God. Unprofitable exhibitions, such as rolling on the floor, making animal sounds, unseemly or immoral actions, are to be stopped lovingly but firmly.
No assembly of saints ever is to be out of the control of the elders.
Either godly, experienced elders will guide the meeting or the meeting will guide the elders. When the meeting begins to guide the elders it will not be long before there are demonic manifestations.
The doctrine of Divine calling is crucial to our understanding. The economic opportunities of the world have become so varied and absorbing that the saints are beginning to suppose God has called them to be teachers or administrators or sales engineers. This is not the case. God has called each member of the elect to be a saint, to be a contributing member of the Body of the Anointed Deliverer.
A believer may be tempted to accept the doctrine that he has been called to nursing or agriculture, or to some other occupation needed by the developing nations of the world, with the idea in mind of using the occupation to evangelize those countries. The world is quick to endorse any Christian who gives of his energies and abilities to contribute to the betterment of mankind.
In some instances the Spirit of God may lead an individual to utilize a natural talent or human training in order to gain access to a country or to help people better their health or their living conditions.
But it was not Jesus’ carpentry or Peter’s fishing or Paul’s tent making that opened the doors before them or brought about eternal value. It was not their proficiency in an occupation that formed their Christian testimony. It was the signs and wonders performed by Christ and the Apostles that announced their Divine mission.
It was the healing virtue of Jesus accompanying Peter, not the smell of fish on his garments that brought the crowds into the streets where he passed.
The same is true today.
To Be Continued…