|Posted on January 9, 2020 at 10:15 AM|
Each of us have been given a “High calling of God in Christ Jesus” according to the Scriptures. While we may sense that is true most of us struggle with understanding exactly what that means. Our confusion may be due to historical misconceptions of the concepts of “ministry” or “spiritual gifts” propagated by the institutional church. From the third century on the religious notion of ministry was restricted to the “clergy” performing a variety of rituals in the confines of a church building.
Our high calling of God in Christ Jesus has nothing to do with a special class of people, dressed in special clothing, performing special rituals, in a special building, on a special day. It is a task given to all believers by Jesus’ own command to love one another as he does. Because of our spiritual union with Christ (we are in him and he is in us) each believer is “Christ”. We are individual members of the body of Christ, who are led and empowered by the Spirit of Christ and have the mind of Christ. As ambassadors for Christ in this world we are called to love others like Christ. In short, we are called to “be Christ” displaying his character of grace and truth in all our relationships.
Being Christ to others in this world is the real purpose for our lives. God has left us in this sin-cursed world living in sin-cursed bodies for the same reason he sent his own Son into this world. As the resurrected Christ said to his disciples, “As the Father has sent me, so send I you”. Our high calling of God in Christ Jesus is the privilege we have to be “Christ” to others in all our relationships at home, on the job, or in the community. But what does it mean to “be Christ” to others? What is involved in fulfilling this high calling of God in Christ Jesus?
The simplest way to answer these and similar questions about our calling is to review the God-given tools for the job. First and foremost is the indwelling Spirit of Christ given to every believer. Because our calling is supernatural. we must have the supernatural power of the Spirit. The same Spirit that raised Jesus from the grave lives in us to give us the power and direction we need to be Christ to others. Because we have been born of the Spirit, we are new creations of God with the very life and righteousness of Christ. Just as Jesus lived out his daily life and completed his mission in this world by the power of the Spirit, so we also live and are able to fulfill our high calling of God in this world.
Because we have been given the mind of Christ, we are able to believe our true identity as a child of God. Knowing we are one with Christ allows us to give up our rights to be ministered to in favor of serving others. The freedom from our natural selfishness gives us the ability to obey God even if it cost us our lives. Using the mind of Christ, we know we cannot lose no matter what it looks like. It is this joyful confidence that allows us love others like he does and fulfills our high calling of God.