Called to His Purpose
7th Sunday of Epiphany
Archbishop Loren Thomas Hines
February 23, 2020
Readings: Exodus 24: 12- 18
Philippians 3: 7- 14
Matthew 17: 1- 9
Each season of the church calendar speaks of special events that God wants us to understand. God emphasizes that His Son came to set man free so that man may show forth God’s glory. He has made all things new. It is unfortunate that we hold on to the past and not move on. Epiphany is a proclamation that evil has been put aside, the bondage has been broken. It should be that when Christ comes to our lives, we should forget the other things that hold us in bondage.
The Old Testament is symbolic of what we should be today. God tells Moses to “come up here.” God is saying, “Rise up. Rise above all the other circumstances, rise above all the turmoil and struggles.” In the same manner, He is telling us today, “Come up here. Come to the Table and rise above your problems.” Jesus always consults with God in whatever he was going to do. He always went up to the mountain for guidance and directions. Here, we are told that He went up to the Mount of Transfiguration, bringing with Him Peter, James and John. God invites us to the mountain to show us things because He wants us to have quality time with Him. God spoke with Moses up on the mountain. He spoke with Elijah up on the mountain. When one is high up on the mountain top, one can see everything. In the Mount of Transfiguration, Peter, James and John fell asleep. When they awoke, they saw Moses and Elijah and they were amazed. Jesus at this time was transfigured. He was glowing and he had a special bright aura surrounding him. Peter, upon seeing this, said, “Lord let us build three tabernacles for you, Moses and Elijah.” Peter was acting on what he believed was right according to man’s thinking. Many times, we build our own dreams, our own desires without really seeking to know God’s real plan for us. We need to look to God for guidance and direction. God’s voice sounded from the heavens,” This is My beloved Son whom I have chosen. Listen to Him.”
We set our own course many times for our lives without listening to God. This challenges us to “go up the mountain” and listen to Him to find out what He has in store for us. Philippians 3 tells us there is an upward call, a higher calling from God for our lives. Psalm 46: 10 “be still and know that I am God.” We measure things according to the world’s standards when God has a different set of standards. Isaiah 55: 9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts higher than your thoughts.”
Each of us from the womb, from the moment of conception, has been called to fulfill His purpose. We should be fulfilling His desire and not our own. Galatians 5: 17 “For the flesh sets its own desires against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do things that you please.” This means that the flesh is constantly in opposition to the spirit, which is why things go wrong. When the flesh and spirit are one and in unity, we open the door for God’s blessings to enter into our lives. We need to listen to God instead of doing things our own way.
Romans 8:28 – 30 “ And we know that in all things God works for the good for those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. For those God foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those He predestined, He also called; those he called, He also justified; those He justified, he also glorified.” He has prepared and equipped us to fulfill His purpose. 2nd Timothy 1: 9 “ He has saved us and called us to a holy life – not because of anything we have done but because of His own purpose and grace. This grace was given to us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time.” 2 Peter 1: 10 “Therefore, my brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fail.”
The best education we can ever receive is knowing God’s will, listening to Him and fulfilling His purpose. If we are where God wants us to be, life would be smooth sailing. Even when problems come, we will know how to handle them and be overcomers. God leads us to a life of joy and confidence when we put our problems in His hands.