St. Paul's Lutheran Church

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Prayer: Heavenly Father, make my calling as Your child clear and keep me mindful of why You have called me to be a Christian. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Scripture: “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called” – Ephesians 4:1

The main thing that should influence a Christian’s outward walk is the remembrance of his calling and appointment by God. He should always be mindful of why he is called “Christian,” and should thus live consistently. A believer must shine before the world, that is to say, that through his life and God’s work in his life, the Word of God and the name of Christ must be exalted. Everywhere the Scripture attests to this, saying, “You have received God’s grace and His Word, and you are a blessed and chosen people! In Christ, all your needs are abundantly supplied. Do not forget this and do not forget that you are called to a way of life far greater and very different than others. Demonstrate your calling by how you live by seeking a higher good than the world seeks, because you have received far greater blessings. Let your lives honor and glorify the Lord who has given you all things.”

The so-called “Christian life” that does not honor Christ in this way makes sin and rebelliousness to be more important that Christ, to be as a god! Every sin the people of God commit provokes the Lord, not only the act of being disobedient, but also the transgression of the second commandment, the abuse of God’s name. The horribleness of sin is made worser still by the simple fact that one called and redeemed by God is blaspheming His name before others. As Paul writes, “The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.” If you commit sin before others without any sort of remorse or repentance, then you are literally blaspheming God’s holy name, mocking His name and trampling upon it, and so leading others to do the same. This is not how a Christian is to exhibit his life!

Christians will sin because even as God’s precious and holy saints, we are still very much riddled with sin and the desires of the flesh. But a Christian must also be more keenly aware of sin, of how it destroys and deceives, and must work to honor God in his life by spending his days in prayer, repentance, and being intentional, not living out life offensively. He must work to conduct himself honorably before God and not permit blasphemy or disbelief to rule him, but instead seek to honor the sacred name of God before all. For as the Lord says, “Them that honor me will I honor.”

Therefore, people of God, do not live in ignorance as the unbelievers do, but live wisely. Do not pretend to know the truth, but actually learn and study and engage the truth and so learn it rightly. Do not blaspheme the name of God by sinful living or by making sin your master but put to death the sin and disobedience and repent daily. Do not seek to have your own way, but seek what is right and what is godly, and what is true. For then you will be to the world a light that shines, and the name of the Lord shall be exalted before the world.