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Faithlife

Romans 8_28-31 The Calling

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Secular:

  • It became popular in the  60’s… 70’s for people to search for “themselves”… the meaning of life…
  • In the Mid 90’s the church woke up form its slumber and began to search out its purpose…
  • In the Late 90’s Os Guinness  talked to us about “the Call”
  • It has been a “built in desire”… human beings were created for more than selfish pleasure… hanging out for up to 80-90 years… then becoming worm food…
  • I have been struck by the fact that the Word of God has been so explicit about our purpose…
    • And yet… we still wonder
      • Old Testament… Manna and Golden Calf
    • Tap on the Shoulder…
    • Trumpets…
    • Booming voice…
    • 2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work…. Every good purpose… of God.
    • We ask when we have the answer…
    • Do I have to… do homework… clean my room

Biblical:

Romans 8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

Personal:

  • I remember being asked to do my chores as a kid… wasn’t much… I know that now…
  • But I was pretty keen to understand the implications of child labour… of virtual slavery… I needed to know why my bed had to be made… why I had to pick up my dirty clothes, why the toilet seat needed to be in the down position and why those dishes had to be done before I could go out and play…. After I exhausted my lame arguments designed to secure my liberation… my mother closed the debate with BECAUSE…
  • I hated… “because”…
  • It never satisfied… it never gave me purpose…
  • Even as a kid… I wanted purpose…

Bridge:

  • God calls us to his purpose… according to his purpose…
  • And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
  • Calling according to Os Guinness “the truth that God calls us to himself so decisively that everything we are, everything we do, and everything we have is invested with a special devotion and dynamism lived out as a response to his summons and service.”
  • Here that again… his calling… “the truth that God calls us to himself, so decisively, that everything we are, everything we do, and everything we have is invested with a special devotion and dynamism lived out as a response to his summons and service.”
  • God’s call is like a diamond… multi-faceted…
  • God’s call is complete and encompassing
  • Over-whelming… yet simple…
  • God’s gift to us… greatest gift is his Grace… his calling on our life…
  • Our response… is our faithfulness to that call…

Body:

Called to Freedom:

Galatians 5:13 For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

  •  Set free from the entanglement of sin
  • Set free from bondage to this world…
  • Set free from selfish desire
  • Set free to serve one another…
  • If all we have is this (around us)… we serve self
  •  If we have been freed… we truly serve God and others
  • Called to freedom!

Called to Fellowship:

Colossians 3:15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.

  •  Called as a body… a family… a bride
  • Promises to the church (not individuals)
  •  We are called to be united… we are called to be in Fellowship
  • Under Christ… His Church
  •   Hebrews 10:24 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
  • Universal church… Invisible
  • Functioning Group… Mission mandate
  • Called to Fellowship… Unity of purpose…

Called to Salvation:

2 Timothy 1:8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord or of me His prisoner, but join with me in suffering for the gospel according to the power of God, 9 who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity,

  •  God’s grace… God’s purpose…

o                   Demonstrate His Love

o                   Communicate

o                   Bearers of Blessing

  •  Consistent with God to redeem a people from wrath… call them to himself…

1 Thessalonians 4:7 For God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification.

  •  To conform to the image of Christ…
  • To His heart
  • To his Truth
  • To his holiness

Hebrews 9:15 For this reason He is the mediator of a new covenant, so that, since a death has taken place for the redemption of the transgressions that were committed under the first covenant, those who have been called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

  •  Call to Salvation is a call by God by grace to an eternal inheritance
  • To exchange Death… wrath and separation from God… for eternal life and glory…

1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

  •  Live according to the Promise…
  • God taps you on the shoulder… simple… do as you are told…
  • Fight… why?... take hold of the promise… (Wrestle a winning Lotto 6/49 ticket out of your hand)
  • Cause we want to do well by God… gratitude… Uprising
  •  Jesus died for me… and I care…

Called to Serve:

Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going.

  •  Salvation is by Grace through Faith…
  • By Faith Abraham obeyed…
  • Ever had to trust when you didn’t want to?
    • CNE hanging from a rope…
    • I had to let go…
  • The riches of the inheritance meant Abraham had to let go…
    • Of his trust in himself * In what he knew
    • In the familiar…
  • Abraham had to go… Embrace the calling… the purpose God had for him… answer the calling by Faith

Gave purpose…

Ephesians 4:11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ;

·          We have a purpose…

·          We have meaning in direction…

Romans 12:6 Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, each of us is to exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith; 7 if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching; 8 or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. 9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.

·          Do what God has enabled us to do…

·         Not just our talents and skills… our giftings… our Holy Spirit empowered service… step out in faith… do a little Abraham…

·         Answer… is the call to serve…

·         Remember the two great commandments…

·         Love God completely…

·         And Love one another…

    • There are actions involved…
    • Marriage… tells you that

·          Called to serve…

Called to Proclaim:

1 Peter 2:9 But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God's OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvellous light;

·         It wasn’t just a whisper for you… psst…

·         I wasn’t just a pact between you and God…

·         Antiques Roadshow…

    • Some old tea set… war medal * Some old clock or broach
    • Blown away by its value…
  • OPEN your eyes!... be blown away… * Isaiah 6:3 And one called out to another and said, "Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD of hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory." 4 And the foundations of the thresholds trembled at the voice of him who called out, while the temple was filling with smoke. 5 Then I said, "Woe is me, for I am ruined! Because I am a man of unclean lips, And I live among a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts."
    • AND We have to declare it…
    • It wasn’t just a whisper for you… psst…
    • I wasn’t just a pact between you and God…

·         A bear on the highway… stop draw a crowd

·         A squirrel on a hydro line… Stop… draw a crowd

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

·         God could have chosen other ways…

·         Holy Fortune cookies.

·         Astrologers…

·         Theophanies…

·         He called the church… not the building… the people

o                   Called to freedom

o                   Called to fellowship

o                   Called to salvation

o                   Called to serve

o                   AND called to proclaim… all that…

  • We are called… a royal priesthood… a holy nation… the children of God… to declare his name in all the earth…
  • How many people in the world consider themselves Christian?
  • How many people are in the world…
  • Do you know what kind of ratio that is? 

·          We have been called to proclaim…

Conclusion:

Ephesians 4:1 Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, 3 being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace

·          He called the church… not the building… the people

o                   Called to freedom

o                   Called to fellowship

o                   Called to salvation

o                   Called to serve

o                   Called to proclaim

Romans 8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

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