A Heavenly Calling (3)
“Now Moses was faithful in all God’s house as a servant, to testify to the things that were to be spoken later, but Christ is faithful over God’s house as a son. And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.”
Those who have truly begun to share in the heavenly calling will demonstrate their engagement with that really real world consistently, through every day of their lives. That is, they will be faithful – as Jesus was faithful to God, Who sent Him to us for our redemption, and now receives His ongoing intercession on our behalf.
Those who share in the heavenly calling will be found to be faithful, like Jesus, and they will persist in faithfulness throughout all their days.
But to what – or whom? – are they to be faithful? Moses and Jesus were faithful to God, to do whatever He appointed for them. Like them we also must be faithful to God, or it will be difficult to tell that we have begun to share in the heavenly calling. We are being faithful to God, our writer informs us, when we “hold fast our confidence and our boasting in hope.” OK, but what does that mean?
What does it mean to “hold fast our confidence”? Well, in what are we confident? If we have believed in Jesus we should understand that we have begun to share in the heavenly calling. Are you confident of that? Do you get up every day completely assured that your sins are forgiven and your eternal destination is secure? And do you, on the basis of that confidence, make plans to walk within the parameters of your heavenly calling throughout the day, knowing that the God Who gave you that calling will be with you and will never fail nor forsake you (Heb. 13:5)? Do you go forth confident of God’s presence with you, of His pleasure in your chosen lifestyle, of His Spirit’s working in you to make you willing and able to do what pleases God (Phil. 2:13), and of Jesus’ ongoing intercession for you with the Father?
If we were confident of this – really confident – and if we held fast to that confidence every day of our lives, it would not be long before it began to be clear to everyone around us that our lives are following a trajectory which differs markedly from the narcissistic, relativistic, materialistic, and secular lifestyle of the people around us.
But being faithful also involves “our boasting in our hope.” If we are filled with the hope of glory – now and for eternity – then that should be a matter of some importance to us. It should be just the kind of thing we would be eager to talk about, to urge others to consider, to share with others who share in this way of life some of the ways we are discovering the really real nature of our heavenly calling. Those who share in this calling will find themselves boasting about it, so that others might be able to have an explanation of the transformed and confident ways they see us living (1 Pet. 3:15).
We are being faithful to God, and thus following our faithful Jesus, when we hold fast our confidence, firm to the end, and rejoice and boast in our hope at every opportunity. Now obviously this suggests an approach to life that differs in many ways from the people we meet each day. This should not surprise us; after all, it is a heavenly calling that we are pursuing, and not just one career among many. We share in this calling by believing in Jesus. We are faithful as we share in this calling by going forth each day in the confidence of our salvation, living in that confidence and boasting to one and all about the calling from, for, and to heaven that we have embraced from God Himself.
We begin to share in that calling by trusting in Jesus. But we continue to share in it only to the extent that we, like Jesus, are faithful to Him who called us.
Talk with a few Christian friends. Are they “confident” in their calling? Are they “boasting” about their heavenly calling with others? Are you? Consider some ways you might encourage one another in these two aspects of our heavenly calling (Heb. 1):24). Look for someone to “boast” to this week.
This week’s series, A Heavenly Calling, is available in a free downloadable format, suitable for group study.
For more insight to this heavenly calling, order the book, The Radical Disciple, by John Stott, from our online store. Or read the article, “Manufacturing Converts or Making Disciples?” by Trudy Chun.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture references are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.