1 Thessalonians 4: Called to Holiness
As is typical with the writing of Paul, as we are nearing the end of 1 Thessalonians, he begins talking about some general life advice that the people ought to follow in chapter 4. I really like the way that he summarizes his advice.
1Th 4:7 For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.
If we are followers of Christ, then we have been called by Him. However, when someone calls, then we are theoretically going to be moving somewhere else. After all, if I am in one room and you call me from another room, you are calling me to the other room. You want me to make a change in my location to come and talk to you.
Therefore, God is asking us to make a change. He is calling us to a holy place. He is calling us into a place where we conform to Jesus. We are not being called to a place of greed, envy, hatred or evil. Rather, we are being called to holiness.
Clearly, we don’t always listen to the call. Just as I don’t need to respond to you when you call me from the other room, we can ignore what God wants us to do. Think about Jonah. He got on the boat and went in the opposite direction. This is the problem of sin. We violate the law of God, and we do what we want rather than what God has explicitly said we need to do.
I guess that is a challenge for all of us. If we are followers of Jesus Christ, we have been called. We need to respond to that call and go where the call is leading us. Paul tells us here that the destination is going to be holiness. Let’s keep working for that.