Called or Chosen? (Austin Jackson)

            Is a minister called or is he chosen? What is the difference? Is there a difference at all? So often we speak of the two as if they were the same, but according to God’s word there are a few notable differences between being called and being chosen.
Jesus, In Matthew 22:14, ends a parable with the words, “For many are called, but few are chosen.” This would lead us straight to assume that there is a difference. After all, it was Jesus who said it. To understand what he meant, we must first look at the parable He told. He spoke of a man who hosted a marriage for his son and sent his servants to go bid all that were invited to come. All of the ones who were called “made light of it” (Matthew 22:5), and continued on with other plans. So the father sent his servants out again, but this time to bring in anyone and everyone who would come. They did, and all of the guests presumably had on their wedding garment except for one. In the parable, this man was bound hand and foot and cast into outer darkness. What was the difference between the others that were called to the marriage and this man? Simply, all of the guests were called to the wedding in the same way, but only some were prepared.
Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.” Here, there are two requirements in order for all things to work together for good. First, it is to those who love God, and secondly, it is to those who are called according to His purpose. It does not stop at, “to those who are called,” but it finishes with “according to His purpose.” So what does it even mean to be called according to His purpose? It is completely up to us to accept His purpose for our lives. This requires a daily display of faith. Therefore, Romans 8:28 is telling us that all things will work together for good to those who truly love God, and when one truly loves God, they display faith to do whatever He wants them to do. This, in turn, makes the point that we can actually choose to be chosen. We are literally called to be chosen. Our calling is the first step of being chosen.
So what is the difference between being called and being chosen? It is not necessarily our choice to be called, for many are called, but according to what we have read in the scripture, it is our choice to be chosen. It is up to us to undergo the preparation that is necessary to fulfill what God has called us to. He will enable us to gain more knowledge and maturity as we go through the preparation process, but He will not undergo the stages of preparation for us. It is completely up to us to accept His calling. When we truly accept His calling, we are more than willing to put forth the effort required to be one of the few who are chosen.
            What are you waiting for?