How may we liken the calling of God to Christians? It is like this: “But let no one enter the house of the LORD except the priests and the ministering Levites; they may enter, for they are holy. And let all the people keep the charge of the LORD” (2 Chron. 23:6). We know the Lord God calls believers to His service. He lays down specific purposes to each one of them. In these last days He called believers His priests and servants through Jesus Christ, and so, Levites in that sense. There is great learning in the chronicler’s words. We know Jesus as the High Priest of God, and all who become sons of God through Him are God’s descendants for His service. So, each one is appointed a service; together they serve God’s kingdom. Christians are not normal people, they are distinct beings.
A Christian’s life journey is not based on his or her own accord. It is a union of God’s ways according to His purpose for them. God loves them as He loved His Son that He should not leave them to their own ways. For this reason, they are distinct beings. He saved them to appoint them a journey to eternal life. That journey is based on the decisions He makes for them. Some of them will not be understood right away. But since He knows that they are aware of His attributes, He trusts they accept them without misgivings. Such has been possible only by His calling them for a purpose. Hence, we ought to rejoice at His every way to us. Although some will be hard to swallow, when we know He loves us, we do not have to fear. Now, if we consider the Levites, sons of Aaron, their calling was specific. They must serve God. And in this particular instance it also included protecting the house of God and the king. Certain situations call for certain actions that service to God and the keeping of His ordinances are upheld; those actions are from the Lord. The Levites were never purposed for carrying weapons, but in this occasion were called for invasive action. They removed wickedness from Judah. Their calling served a greater cause in the days to come. The temple of God was restored.
God led those Levites with His decisions. So, what does it mean to us who are called to serve Him through Jesus Christ? The ways for fulfilling our purpose are structured in Him. All we must do is listen to His counsel and perform. If He asks us to take a route we are unfamiliar with, or not bold enough to walk, we should not doubt. But, there will naturally be doubt and even fear. Yet, the moment we show willingness and commit our ways to Him, we see both doubt and fear vanish by His power. He changes situations and creates ways when there were none. He will then strengthen us to walk. Now that we understood that God gives His purpose to each one of us, we also ought to know there are variations in them according to their nature. Hence, we hear Paul elsewhere say that not all are apostles, prophets, teachers, and so on. And then there are the individual members of the body. There are those who lead and then those who follow. We contemplate this principle of God when we truly obtained His purpose. For in His house are many vessels for glory.
God’s purpose for you might be to preach or teach the gospel. In that case, your holiness should be greater than those who hear you. Do not be confused. All believers must be holy to God even as any Levite that served in the temple of God. But if you are called to minister the gospel of Christ, it is a higher calling that demands clear integrity before Him. In fact, He Himself prepares you for it and then demonstrates His gospel in and through you. Again, God’s purpose for you might be to keep His charge, which He Himself revealed it to you or revealed it through His ministers. Just as some of those Levites were ordered to protect the king, even so your purpose might be to assist the gospel proclamation, help the poor, widows, orphans or service of any kind the Lord desires. For this reason, some are more blessed than others so that in Christ God is made known. Even in performing these He expects you to be holy and sincere. To perform His purpose without them will have negative consequences.
As you live for God’s purpose, know for sure that there will be rejection from all quarters of people. God also allows it for the greater good. Since they cannot fathom God’s vision for you, your obedience to Him seems foolish to them. You will suffer inwardly and at times outwardly. They may speak of all the things you should have done or accuse you of doing things for your glory. They may condemn you for not listening to them and insult your way of faith when you suffer or face hardship in fulfilling His purpose. In all of this, know that the Lord God is watching. He is watching them as well as watching over you. When they revile you, it is not because you went out of the norm, but because the sin in them, which is also in the world, has kept them out of the norm of God. God in His loving kindness will reveal to them the nature of His purpose to you. They shall know. Corresponding to this the man of God said, “And let them know that this is Your hand; You, LORD, have done it” (Ps. 109:27). And you too seek the Lord that the intent in His purpose is made known. For this reason, sincerity and holiness before Him are pivotal. As you pursue the purpose he gave you, bear this in mind: it is for immeasurable joy.
Here is an example of how to pursue His purpose for us. “Thus says the LORD, ‘Stand in the court of the LORD’S house, and speak to all the cities of Judah who have come to worship in the LORD’S house all the words that I have commanded you to speak to them. Do not omit a word!’” (Jer. 26:2). Furthermore, it is an example to how clearly the Lord God instructs us once we are with His purpose. When Judah was sinning rampantly, the Word of God came to Jeremiah. It did not come to him apart from a specific purpose of the Lord. Great is the advantage of such purpose. Firstly, the Lord finds and instructs us to serve Him. Secondly, we clearly and emphatically understand His instructions; there will be no doubts. Thirdly, we see the ways He prepared for us. Then, as the psalmist said, though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we do not fear evil; for He is with us. His rod and staff comfort us. How preciously and wonderfully does He deal with us! What can we give Him in return? I know my hands will never find enough to pay Him back, and so should you.
Let the Lord God have His way with you. You will further see what life is like when you live for Him. The end will always be glorious than the beginning, for it is His promise. It will be a vast collection of great things. When His purpose revels in you, it beckons honor, blessings, peace and joy. These will appear from all aspects of your life. No matter what phase of life you are in they appear. Men will recognize the glory God bestowed on you. For it is His will for His children. “But when the crowds saw this, they were awestruck, and glorified God, who had given such authority to men” (Matt. 9:8). Notice the words “such authority to men” chosen by Matthew in the Spirit. They carry immense significance to all who believe in God’s will to assign His purpose to His children. Matthew knew authority was given to Jesus and so did the Spirit, but they chose to say “authority to men.” There was none there other than Jesus with such authority. Yet, the crowd including Matthew, who later wrote the gospel, believed that God willed to give such authority to men. For this reason also, God came in the flesh. And Matthew too was convinced of it. He was one whom God appointed to write the gospel of Jesus Christ besides an apostle. You and I were made priests to God through Jesus to receive authority according to His purpose so that many glorify God.
As we stand by God’s purpose for us, we can quantify the results. “…Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now” (John 2:10). We might be good people and might have done good deeds. But with God’s purpose in us, we will do greater deeds. It is firstly leading men to life. We will go on to do greater works until our last breath. They will be nothing like what others without God do; for they carry a different light. God makes His purpose lively in us that our service to Him is always like the good wine. Men who tasted it will never get tired of it, and so, will practice seeking the Almighty God. We also realize our earlier deeds as the poorer wine. “But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? The God who inflicts wrath is not unrighteous, is He? (I am speaking in human terms.)” (Rom. 3:5).
If we fail to deliver His purpose for us, we inevitably demonstrate the deeds of unrighteousness; for we can only serve one master. Then, the outcome, i.e. the wrath of God is also inevitable. Now, the wrath inflicted does not annul our salvation. If it did, Paul would have spoken in spiritual terms. But, we witness God’s discipline upon us for not being holy and sincere. So, while we do not desire to be inflicted by God’s wrath we also ought to demonstrate His righteousness. This means we must be a people that pursue the purpose He gave us and obtain honor from Him. “For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church” (Eph. 5:29).