“O God, thou hast taught me from my youth and until now; I shall manifest thy wondrous works.” Psalm 71:171 Corinthians 1:9God faithfully keeps his promises. He called you to be partners with his Son Yeshua Christ our Lord.
Called, Chosen and Faithful
Each of these words denotes a different meaning, and it is important to understand what it means to be “called, chosen and faithful.”
In the Greek language of the New Testament, the word for “called” is kletos. It is related to the noun klesis, which means “a calling” and is used “especially of God’s invitation to man to accept the benefits of salvation” (Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, “Call, Called, Calling”). It is interesting to note the similarities to the Greek word for “church,” which is ekklesia, meaning a calling out of. So the Church consists of those who are called (invited) by God to understand His plan, to repent of their sins and to receive His Holy Spirit.
It is important to understand that one’s calling is an act of God! Only He calls (invites) someone. That is quite evident in John 6:44 when Jesus told the crowds, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him.”
When the apostle Paul wrote his epistle to the Romans, he referred to his audience as “the called of Jesus Christ,” and the “beloved of God, called to be saints” (Romans 1:6-7). Later, when writing to the Corinthian brethren, Paul wrote: “God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:9).
Not only is a Christian to be called into the “fellowship of His Son,” which indicates a relationship with Him, but there is a calling “out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9). This is a true blessing to be called out of the confusion of erroneous teachings that are so extant in this world into the light of God’s truth.
We must respond to that calling (invitation). Positive action is required! To be chosen, a person must accept his or her calling, be grateful for it and move forward in serving God and His Son faithfully.
The word for “chosen” in the Greek language is eklektos, meaning “chosen out, select.” It can also be translated as “elect” (Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, “Choice, Choose, Chosen”). God truly calls and He chooses, but after one’s calling, an individual decision has to be made as well. One must choose God back and begin to live faithfully.
“But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions you were taught, whether by word or our epistle” (2 Thessalonians 2:13-15).
The apostle Paul clearly states the combined decision by God to both call and choose His people, but Christians are to hold fast to what they were taught from God’s apostolic leaders by the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. They had to become and remain obedient to God and to live faithfully doing all that God would ask of them.
This is further explained in Ephesians 1:13: “In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise” (emphasis added throughout).
We have to make a decision after we hear the word of truth and the calling from God. We must trust God and believe in His Son, and then be sealed with the Holy Spirit. One should believe in their heart, repent (make a 180 degree turn from sin towards God), confess with their mouth before men that they have believed upon Jesus as Lord and be water baptized. One is water baptized by immersion in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit and is sealed with the Holy Spirit.
We all are to be obedient to God. We cannot just accept the wonderful calling of God and continue to live a life following our own desires. We are to be the “elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:2).
The called and chosen must be also live faithfully! They must continue to actively believe, obey and rely on God. The called and chosen will need to faithfully endure, both in good and in bad times.Paul very clearly stated the responsibilities of the called: “Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful” (Colossians 3:12-15).
Being faithful comes from the Greek word pistos. There are two senses in which this word can be understood. It means “to be trusted, reliable” and, secondly, “active, signifying believing, trusting, relying” (Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, p. 402).
The called and chosen must live faithfully! They must continue to actively believe, obey and rely on God. The called and chosen will need to live faithfully, as well as to endure and overcome by the Spirit of Christ, both in good and in bad times.
The assurance of the called, chosen and faithful is to receive eternal life. It is a belief and trust that is deep within each one. Paul reminded Timothy to “lay hold on eternal life, to which you were also called” (1 Timothy 6:12).
The Bible is full of examples of the faithfulness of His people—those who looked forward to the coming Kingdom of God. The author of Hebrews 11 points out a number of ordinary men and women of faith who God flowed through to do amazing and supernatural acts of faith. Despite difficult trials, they made a practice of relying upon God and always looking to His Word and being led by His Holy Spirit. They are examples of people who were called and chosen, and they were pointed to as examples of living faithfully.
They strengthened the disciples in these cities and encouraged the disciples to remain faithful. Paul and Barnabas told them, “We must suffer a lot to enter the kingdom of God.”
“Many are called, but few are chosen”
This particular phrase was used by Jesus after He spoke a parable in which someone was invited to a wedding but did not have on a wedding garment (Matthew 22:11-14). The lesson of the parable is that when someone is called by God, that person has a responsibility to respond to the calling and make decisive physical and spiritual changes in his or her life.
We see an example of this obligation in Job 29:14, where Job said: “I put on righteousness, and it clothed me; my justice was like a robe and a turban.” Here the putting on of righteousness was compared to putting on clothing.
This symbolism is also found in Revelation 19:8: “And to her [the Church] it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.”
The man in the parable who was invited to the wedding had a duty to come dressed for the occasion, which symbolically meant that he was to put on righteousness, but he didn’t do that. So Jesus made this famous statement that “many are called, but few are chosen.” Therefore, the called-out ones must be spiritually prepared and be clothed with righteousness and found living faithfully.
Make your call and election sure
The apostle Peter specifically reminded the brethren to be diligent in their calling: “Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:10-11).
As Peter implied, one’s calling must not be neglected. Those called, chosen and found living faithfully have “exceedingly great and precious promises” (verse 4), it is “for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, love” (2 Peter 1:5-7).
Peter continued, “For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” (verse 8).
What an awesome blessing to be Called | Chosen | Faithful!
In the concluding chapter of 1 Peter, we read the following statement: “But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you” (1 Peter 5:10).
God expects the Called and the Chosen to be found Living Faithfully and blessed by the Hand of God, led by the Spirit of the Living God, worshipping in Spirit and in Truth and encouraging one another to live faithfully!