And those whom he predestined he also called.
In the second letter to Timothy, first chapter and ninth verse, we read these words: “who saved us and called us to a holy calling.” Now here is a touchstone by which we may test our calling. It is “a holy calling, not because of our works, but because of his own purpose and grace.” This calling forbids all trust in our own doings and turns us to Christ alone for salvation, but it afterwards purges us from dead works to serve the living and true God.
As He who called you is holy, so must you be holy. If you are living in sin, you are not called; but if you are truly Christ’s, you can say, “Nothing pains me so much as sin; I desire to be rid of it. Lord, help me to be holy.” Is this the longing of your heart? Is this the substance of your life toward God and His divine will? Again, in Philippians 3:13-14 we are told of “the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Is your calling an upward call? Has it refined your heart and focused it upon heavenly things? Has it elevated your hopes, your tastes, your desires? Has it raised the constant tenor of your life, so that you spend it with God and for God?
We find another test in Hebrews 3:1—“you who share in a heavenly calling.” “Heavenly calling” means a call from heaven. If your call comes from man alone, you are uncalled. Is your calling from God? Is it a call to heaven as well as from heaven? Unless you are a stranger here, and heaven is your home, you have not been called with a heavenly calling, for those who have been called from heaven declare that they look for a city that has foundations, whose builder and maker is God, and they find themselves strangers and pilgrims on the earth. Is your calling holy, high, heavenly? Then, beloved, you have been called of God, for such is the calling by which God calls His people.