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Friday, March 23, 2012

The Christian Call

When I thought of the "Christian Call" the first thing I thought of was a person sitting in an office making an evangelistic call to another person.  Hey, why not?  We have "Television Evangelists" why can't we have "Telephone Evangelists?" (Sarcasm Included) That is not the "call" I am talking about.  I am talking about the call of showing and living Christianity.  I first want to communicate that our call as Christians is first and foremost to "seek his kingdom and his righteousness." Mt 6:33  Then, we must continue Christ's work of seeking the lost (Lk 19:10) as he commanded. Mt 28:18-20  That being said, now we can look at how we are called to act as Christians.

The first thing that must be noted is that verse 11 says God's grace is for all mankind.  This quickly pulls the carpet out from under the belief that a certain elect group of people will be saved.  You see, God desires all mankind to be saved (1Ti 2:3,4), but not all mankind will desire God to save them.  God's love, mercy, and grace is for all, unfortunately, not all will accept.  God's nature is seen in Christ, beginning with his humble birth in Jerusalem and his final sacrifice of love at Calvary.

The apostle gives a negative and a positive in verse 12.  He says we must "deny ungodliness and worldly desires" while we "live righteously, sensibly, and godly."  This truly makes sense because if we are to remove something useless and do not fill it with something productive we will eventually fill it with useless things again.  For example, if we are to clean out a corner of our garage because it is a cluttered mess and we do not put something there and leave it as an open space, chances are, we will just clutter it up again.  The same goes for a life cluttered with worldly desires and ungodliness.  When we attempt to remove those deeds of clutter and do not fill it with something productive like righteous, sensible, and godly deeds, that old clutter will return!

The question is, how do we fill our lives with righteous, sensible, and godly deeds?  The answer to that my friends, is the "Christian Call."  We are called to the things listed in the first paragraph while we employ verse 13.  We see here two different advents in these few verses.  The first, verse 11, is in the past. It is God's grace that was seen in the earthly life of our Lord Jesus.  The second, verse 13, is in the future.  It is when Jesus returns.  We, Christians, are to be looking for that great moment and living in such a way that says we are in a covenant relationship with God through the blood of his son.  All the rules of living that are listed earlier in this chapter are meaningless without a relationship between Christ and his followers on earth who are to be walking as he commanded and expecting his glorious return.  That is the christian call!  Having a relationship with God through Jesus and anticipating his return.  

Verse 14 emphasizes the need for our salvation and it is tied to the fact that Christ's crucifixion frees us from the guilt of our past sins.  The crucifixion is seen in different aspects in scripture.  It is seen as a sacrifice with Christ as a scapegoat (1Pe 1:18,19), a war with Christ as the mighty warrior who has defeated Satan and his power (1Co 15:54-57), and a ransom paid (1Co 6:20) just to name a few.  What glorious thing God has done for mankind in the form of Jesus Christ and the sacrifice he made on the cross.  Through that sacrifice we are redeemed from every lawless deed and purified as to now be zealous good deeds.  The Christian call is to be zealous for good deeds as we seek first his kingdom and the lost.

Titus is told to "speak, exhort, and reprove."  I love this because I see this as a progressive nature to how we are to preach Christ crucified.  Some people will respond to you speaking to them about Christ.  Others will need exhorted, or to urge, advise, or admonish earnestly and urgently, in order for them to respond to Christ.  Still, some will refuse to respond and they will need to be reproved.  That merely means we must prove to them again God's love through Christ's sacrifice.  Unfortunately, some still will not respond but the Word of God is a seed and it takes time to grow.  Remember, we are looked at according to our efforts and not our successes.  1Co 3:5-9

Today, will you answer the "Christian Call" of seeking first his kingdom and righteousness, the call of seeking the lost, the call of being zealous for good deeds, and the call of sharing Christ crucified?


We must hear the Word of God:  Rom 10:17; Acts 4:4

We must believe or have faith:   Heb 11:6; Acts 16:31

We must repent of our sins:  Lk 13:3; Acts 17:30

We must confess Christ before others:  Mt 10:32; Acts 8:37

We must be immersed into Christ (baptized) Mk 16:16; Acts 2:38

We must be faithful:   Rev 2:10; Acts 14:22           

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