When I was in middle school, I decided that in addition to studying the flute I would learn to play the viola. The string teacher at my school began playing in the Detroit Symphony Orchestra when she was 17 years old. After playing in the orchestra for several years, she quit and began teaching. I found myself on some weekends practicing about six or seven hours a day, taking full advantage of having a wonderful teacher. When I was in high school, I had the opportunity to take private lessons with the assistant principal flutist in the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. This was a great opportunity because he didn't just take anyone as a student. He had previously studied with William Kincaid (famous flutist in the mid 20th century) and was teaching me what he had learned from him. Even though I practiced most days, I still didn't take full advantage of the opportunity before me. I look back on those days and wish I would have practiced more and practiced more of what he wanted me to practice. I was not practicing as one worthy of taking lessons from such a great teacher. Paul reminds us that we are to live a life worthy as one called by Christ. Please turn to Ephesians 4:1.
Paul urges (or begs as it is worded in NLT) for the church to live their lives worthy of their calling. When I looked this verse up on BlueLetterBible.com, I found that it is so full of treasure! First of all I want to look at the phrase "of the calling." The Greek word for this phrase is klēsis, which means calling and it can also mean an invitation to a feast or the "divine invitation to embrace salvation of God," (see footnote 1.). I love this because it reminds me that God invited us to embrace salvation and it also gives me a vision of the wedding feast that the church will take part in. Please look up Revelation 19:6-9. Now I am getting very excited because the richness of God's Word is amazing to me. When I looked up the phrase, "those who are invited" found in Revelation 19:9, I found a different word for invitation. The word is kaleō.
Kaleō is an interesting word to find in this verse because it is also used in Ephesians 4:1. It is used in the phrase, "called by God." This is a word with a lot of meaning with the most used being to call. It can also mean to invite as it is translated in Revelation 19. But this word can also mean to give a name to someone or to bear a name. To me, this makes it seem so much more intimate because God is calling or inviting us by name. But remember, once we are in His grace, we bear His name because we are His children. I dove into this a little on Thursday of last week about how we bear God's name in Ephesians 3:14-15. So, basically Paul is telling us that it is of great importance to live a life worthy of the invitation we received to take part in God's plan of salvation. He tells that we do this because God has called (kaleō) us by name. This is a very personal invitation you have received and it is HUGE! This is the invitation to the wedding feast (oh how I would love to go on about that).
Are you living a life worthy as one God called by name?
1. Blue Letter Bible. "Dictionary and Word Search for klēsis (Strong's 2821)". Blue Letter Bible. 1996-2011. 16 Oct 2011. < http:// www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?