Our Calling (part
Message given at Glad Tidings Tabernacle
and Bible Training School, 1536, Ellis Street, San Francisco,
August 18, 1922
I want to speak to you this morning from
the fourth chapter of Ephesians. We will begin reading from
the first verse:
I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord,
beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith
ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering,
forbearing one another in love; Endeavoring to keep the
unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body,
and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your
calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father
of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
But unto every one of us is given grace according to the
measure of the gift of Christ. Wherefore he saith, When
he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave
gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that
he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
He that descended is the same also that ascended up far
above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) And he
gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists;
and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the
saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of
the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the
faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect
man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.
Beloved, we have for several mornings been
speaking concerning the gifts. And I believe that the Lord
would have us this morning further consider another side
of the gifts. I shall be more or less speaking to preachers,
and to those who desire to be preachers. I would like to
utter those same words Paul utters in 1 Corinthians 14:5:
I would that ye all spake with tongues,
but rather that ye prophesied…
I believe there is no way to make proclamation
but by the Spirit. And I believe that they that are sent
are called and chosen of God to be sent. And so as we go
forth into this chapter, I trust that everyone will understand
what his vocation is in the Spirit, and what the Lord demands
of us as preachers.
We should be able in the face of God and
the presence of His people to behave ourselves so comely
and pleasing to the Lord that we always leave behind us
a life of blessing and power without gendering strife.
It is a great choice to become a preacher
of the Gospel, to handle the Word of life. We that handle
the Word of life ought to be well built on the lines of
common sense, judgment, and not given to anything which
is contrary to the Word of God. There should be in us all
the time such deep reverence towards God and His Word that
under all circumstances we would not forfeit our principles
on the lines of faith that God had revealed unto us by the
Today I believe God will show us how wonderful
we may be in the order of the Spirit for God wants us to
be always in the Spirit so rightly dividing the Word of
truth that all who hear it shall be like strength to weakness.
It shall bring oil to the troubled heart. It shall bring
rest. The Word of God shall make us know that having done
all we may stand in the trial.
God would have us to know that there is
strength by the power of the Spirit, of an equipment of
character to bring us into like-mindedness with the Lord.
We must know to be baptized in the Holy Ghost is to leave
your own life, as it were, out of all questioning; leave
yourself out of all pleasing, and in the name of Jesus come
How He pleased God! How He brought heaven
to earth, and all earth moved at the mightiness of the presence
of heaven in the midst. We must see our vocation in the
Spirit, for God hath chosen us. We must remember that it
is a great choice. Turning to the tenth chapter of Romans,
And how shall they preach, except they
be sent?…How beautiful are the feet of them that preach
the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
We want to be sent. It is a great thing
to be called of God to preach the unsearchable riches of
Christ. You have in this land, and we have in our land,
men of note and of authority, who are looked to on the lines
of socialistic problems. I often think that Lloyd George
has a wonderful time but not a time like a preacher. He
only preaches of natural sources but the man who handles
the Word of God preaches life immortality that swallows
up life. When we come into this blessed life we know we
are teaching principles and ideals which are for life eternal.
God has given to us in the Spirit, and
behold, we are spiritual children today, and we must know
that we have to be spiritual all the time. God forbid that
we should ever be like the Galatian church, after we have
been in the Spirit, we could come in the flesh. You are
allowed to go into the Spirit but you are never allowed
to come in the flesh after you have been in the Spirit.
And so God gives such an idea of this high
order in the Spirit that we may be moved by its power to
see how we may change strength and come into all the line
of faith in God. Let me turn to the first verse of this
wonderful fourth chapter of Ephesians:
I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord,
beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith
ye are called.
Here is Paul in prison. If I can take a
word from anybody, I can take it from anyone who is in prison.
I have never read a book but the Bible, but there are some
things I have read out of Pilgrims Progress which have helped
me very much. It was when he was in prison that God wakened
him on so many wonderful lines of thought. How Paul must
have read the Word right in the hearts of those who came
and went when he was bound with chains for two full years.
He could speak about a fullness, freedom, power, and joy
although he was bound with chains.
My brothers, there is something in the
Gospel different from anything else. And if these men could
go through such hardships – read the first epistle
of Peter and you will see how they were scattered. God says
that the world wasn’t worthy of such material as God
was filling with His power that were in dens and caves of
Oh brother and sister, there have been some wonderful gems
passed through the world touched by the Master’s hand.
There have been some wonderful men in the world who have
caught the glory as the rays have shone from His lips by
the power of His expression. As they beheld Him they have
been fascinated with Him. And I can fairly see as Peter
drew near the time of his departure, as Jesus said:
…When thou wast young, thou girdedst
thyself, and walkedst whither thou wouldest: but when thou
shalt be old, thou shalt stretch forth thy hands, and another
shall gird thee, and carry thee whither thou wouldest not.
And as Peter drew near to the portals of
glory, he wished to die with his head downwards. My word!
What grace incarnated in a human casket that it should have
such ideals of worship.
Oh, beloved, God is a real essence of joy
to us in a time when it seems barrenness, when it seems
nothing can help us but the light from heaven far above
the brightness of the sun. Then that touches you, then that
changes you, and you realize nothing is worthwhile but that.
How he speaks to us when he is in prison,
about “the vocation wherewith ye are called, with
all lowliness and meekness” (Ephesians 4:1,2). He
speaks unto the preacher. Let no person in this place think
that he cannot become a preacher. Let none think he cannot
reach this ideal of lowliness and meekness. God can bring
Some preachers get an idea that nobody
ought to say a word till they are established. I like to
hear the bleating of the lambs. I like to hear the life
of the young believer. I like to hear something coming right
from heaven into the soul as they rise the first time with
tears coming down their eyes, telling of the love of Jesus.
The Holy Ghost fell upon a young man outside
a church. He went into the church where they were all so
sedate. If anything had to move in that church out of the
ordinary, my word! It would be extraordinary. And this young
man with his fulness of life and zeal for the Master got
into ejaculating and praising the Lord, and making manifest
the joy of the Lord, and he disturbed the old saints.
An old man one day was reading the Psalms
quietly. It touched a young man sitting behind him who was
filled with the Holy Ghost, And the young man shouted, “Glory!”
Said the old man, “Do you call that religion?”
The father of the young man to whom we
referred was one of the deacons of the church. The other
deacons got round him and said, “You must talk to
your boy, and give him to understand that he has to wait
till he is established before he manifests those things.”
So his father had a long talk with the
boy, and told him what the deacons said. “You know,”
he said, “I must respect the deacons, and they have
told me they won’t hate this thing. You have to wait
till you are established.”
As they neared their home their horse made
a full stop. He tried to make it go forward and back but
the horse would not move for anything.
What is up with the horse?” asked
the father of the son. “Father,” replied the
boy, “this horse has got established.”
I pray God the Holy Ghost that we will
not get established in that way. God, loose us up from these
old, critical, long-faced, poisoned kind of countenances,
which haven’t seen daylight for many days. They come
into the sanctuary and are in a terrible way. May the Lord
save Pentecost from going to dry rot. Yea, deliver us from
any line of sentimentality, anything which is not reality.
For remember, we must have reality of supernatural quickening
till we are sane and active, and not in any way dormant,
but filled with life, God working in us mightily by His
We must always be on the transforming position,
not on the conforming condition, always renewing the mind,
always renovated by the mighty thoughts of God, always being
brought into line with that which God has said to us by
the Spirit, “This is the way, walk ye in it.”
“Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the
lusts of the flesh.”
Lord, how shall we do it? Can a man be
meek and lowly, and filled with joy? Do they work together?
“Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.”
The depths of God come in, in lowliness and meekness and
make the heart love. There is no heart can love like the
heart that God has touched.
Oh, that love that is made to love the
sinner! There is no love like it. I always feel I can spend
any time with the sinner. Oh, brother, there is a love which
is God’s love! There is a love which only comes by
the principles of the Word of God. “He loved us and
gave Himself for us.”
When that meekness and lowliness of mind
take hold, the preacher is moved by His Creator to speak
from heart to heart and move the people. For without we
are moved by an inward power and ideal of principles, we
are never worth. We must have ideals which come from the
throne of God. We must live in the throne, live on the throne,
and let Him be enthroned, and then He will lift us to the
TONGUES AND INTERPRETATION: “Out
of the depths He has called us, into the heights He has
brought us, unto the uttermost He has saved us to make us
kings and priests unto God. For we are His property, His
own, His loved ones. Therefore He wants to clothe us upon,
with the gifts of the Spirit, and make us worthy for His
Glory to God! Thank the Lord!
“With all lowliness and meekness,
with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love”
Oh, how it is needed, “forbearing
one another in love.” Oh, how this is contrary to
hardness of heart; how this is contrary to the evil powers;
how this is contrary to the natural mind. It is a divine
revelation, and you cannot forbear till you know how He
has been with you in the same thing. It is God’s love
toward you that makes tender, compassionate love one toward
It is only the broken, contrite heart which
has received the mark of God. It is only those in that secluded
place where He speaks to thee alone, and encourages thee
when thou art down and out, and when no hand is stretched
out to thee, He stretches out His hand with mercy and brings
thee into a place of compassion. And now, you cannot think
evil; now you cannot in any way act hard. God has brought
you into long-suffering, with tenderness, with love.
Oh, this love, brother! Many a time my
two brothers have been under conviction and have wept under
conviction as I have tried to bring them into the light.
But up till now neither of them is in the light. I believe
God will bring them.
In the church of God, where a soul is on
fire, kindled with the love of God, there is a deeper love
between me and that brother than there is between me and
my earthly brother. Oh, this love that I am speaking about
is divine love, it is not human love. It is higher than
human love, it is more devoted to God. It will not betray.
It is true in everything. You can depend upon it. It won’t
change its character. It will be exactly as He would act
for you will act with the same spirit, for as He is so are
ye in this world.
As you rise into association with Him in
the Spirit, as you walk with Him in the light as He is in
the Light, then the fellowship becomes unique in all its
plan. I pray God that He will help us to understand it that
we shall be able to put off and put on. We shall be able
to be clothed upon as we have never been, with another majestic
touch, with another ideal of heaven.
No one can love like God. And when He takes
us into this divine love we shall exactly understand this
Word, this verse, for it is full of entreaty, it is full
of passion and compassion, it has every touch of Jesus right
in it. It is so lovely:
“With all lowliness and meekness,
with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love.”
Isn’t it glorious? You cannot find
it anywhere else. You cannot get these pictures in any place
you go to. I challenge you to go into any library in the
world and find words coined or brought forth like these
words, without they are copied from this Word. It isn’t
in nature’s garden, it is in God’s. It is the
Spirit explaining, for He alone can explain this ideal of
beatitudes. They are marvelous, they are beautiful, they
are full of grandeur, they are God’s. Hallelujah!
I hope you are having a good time, for
it is just filling me with new wine this morning. Oh, it
“Endeavouring to keep the unity of
the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:3).
This is one of the main principles of this
chapter. Beloved, let us keep in mind this very thought
today. I am speaking this morning, by the grace of God,
to the preacher. It should never be known that any preacher
caused any distraction, or detraction, or any split, or
disunion in a meeting. The preacher has lost his unction
and his glory if he ever stoops to anything that would weaken
the assembly in any way.
The greatest weakness of any preacher is
to draw men to himself. It is a fascinating point, but you
must be away from fascination. If you don’t crucify
your “old man” on every line, you are not going
into divine lines with God. When they wanted to make Jesus
king, He withdrew Himself to pray. Why? It was a human desire
of the people. What did He want? His Kingdom was a spiritual
Kingdom. He was to reign over demon powers. He was to have
power over the passions of human life. He was to reign so
supremely over everything which is earthly, that all the
people might know He was divine.
He is our pattern, beloved. When they want
to make anything of us, He will give you grace to refuse
it. The way to get out is to find there is nothing in the
earth which is worthy of Him; that there is no one in the
world who is able to understand but He; that everything
will crumble to the dust and become worthless. Only that
which is divine will last.
“Be not afraid to ask, because God
is on the throne waiting to answer your request.”
Every time you draw anyone to yourself
it has a touch of earth. It does not speak of the highest
realm of thought of God. There is something about it which
cannot bear the light of the Word of God. Keep men’s
eyes off you, but get their eyes on the Lord. Live in the
world without a touch or taint of any natural thing moving
you. Live high in the order and authority of God, and see
that everything is bearing you on to greater heights and
depths and greater knowledge of the love of God.
You will help any assembly you go to, and everybody will
get a blessing and will see how much richer they are because
you brought them Jesus. Only Jesus! And He is too big for
any assembly, and He is little enough to fill every heart.
We will always go on to learn of Him. Whatever we know,
the knowledge is so small to what He has to give us. And
so God’s plan for us in giving us Jesus, is all things,
for all things consist in Him.
“All things were made by him; and
without him was not any thing made that was made”
“...in him we live, and move, and
have our being...” (Acts 17:28).
And when it is a spiritual being and an
activity of holiness, see how wonderfully we grow in the
Lord. Oh, it is just lovely!
TONGUES AND INTERPRETATION: “Yea,
it is the Lord Himself. He comes forth clothed upon to clothe
thee in thy weakness, to strengthen thee in thy helplessness,
to uphold thee in the limitation of thy knowledge, to unfold
the mysteries of the Kingdom in the dire straits where two
ways meet, and you know not where to go. He says, ‘This
is the way.’ When thou art in such a straitened place
that no hand but God is able to lead thee out, then He comes
to thee and says, ‘Be strong and fear not, for I am
Hallelujah! Praise the Lord of glory! He
is the everlasting King, and will reign forever and ever
and ever. Glory! Glory! Amen!
TONGUES AND INTERPRETATION: “God
has spoken and He will make it clear, for He is in the midst
of thee to open out thy mind and reveal unto thee all the
mysteries of the Kingdom, for the God of grace is with thee.
For God is greater than all unto thee. He is making thy
way straight before thee, for the Lord is He that comforteth
thee as He comforted Israel, and will lead thee into His
power, for His right hand is with thee to keep thee in all
thy ways lest thou shouldst dash thy foot against a stone,
for the Lord will uphold thee.”
How beautiful is the Scripture coming to
us this morning! How lively it appears to us! And now we
can understand something about the fourteenth chapter of
…I will pray with the spirit, and
I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with
the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.
So God is bringing us right into the fullness
of the Pentecostal power as given in the first days. God
wants us t know that after we have been brought into this
divine life with Christ, we are able to speak in the Spirit,
and we are able to sing in the Spirit; we are able to speak
with the understanding, and sing with the understanding
also. Ah, hallelujah this good day!
I think I ought to say a few more words
concerning: “Endeavouring to keep the unity of the
Spirit in the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:3).
Beloved, I want you, above all things,
to remember that the church is one body. She has many members,
and we are all members of that one body. At any cost we
must not break up the body but rather keep the body in perfect
unity. Never try to get the applause of the people by any
natural thing. Yours is a spiritual work. Yours has to be
a spiritual breath. Your word has to be the Word of God.
Your counsel to the church has to be so that it cannot be
gainsaid. You have to have such solid, holy reverence on
every line so that every time you handly anybody you handle
them for God, and you handle the church as the church of
God. By that means you keep the church bound together.
As the church is bound together in one
Spirit, they grow into that temple in the Lord, and they
all have one voice, one desire, and one plan. And when they
want souls saved, they are all of one mind. I am speaking
now about spiritual power. You get them into the mind of
the Spirit with Christ, and all their desires will be the
same desires of Christ the Head. And so nothing can break
the church on those lines.
As preachers you must never try to save
yourself on any line. You must always be above mentioning
a financial matter on your side. Always before God in the
secret place mention your need, but never bring it to an
assembly; if you do, you drop in the estimation of the assembly.
You are allowed to tell any need belonging to the assembly
or the church management, but on a personal line never refer
to yourself on the platform.
If you preach faith you must live it, and
a man is not supposed to preach without he preach a living
faith. And he must so impress it upon the people that they
will always know God has taken us on for a special plan
aand that we are not ordinary men. After we are called of
God and chosen for Him, we are not again to have ordinary
men’s plans. We ought to have ideals of God only.
Another thing which I think is perhaps
more essential to you than anything else: you preachers,
never drop into an assembly and say the Lord sent you, because
sometimes the assembly has as much on as she can manage.
But it is right for you to get your orders from heaven,
and for God to switch the same order somewhere else that
will make the first call and you will be dropping into the
call. Never make a call without you are really sent. Be
sure you are sent of God.
Brothers, can you be out of God’s
will when you hear His voice? “My sheep hear My voice,
and they follow Me.” Oh, that God today shall help
us by the mind of the Spirit to understand. I believe God
has a message on fire. He has men clothed by God. He has
men sent by God. Will you be the men? Will you be the women?
You ask, “Can I be the man? Can I
be the woman?” Yes, God says, “Many are called,
but few are chosen.” Are you the chosen ones? Those
who desire to be chosen, will you allow God to choose you?
Then He will put His hand upon you. And in the choice He
will give you wisdom, He will lead you forth, He will stand
by you in the straitened corner, He will lead you every
step of the way, for the Lord’s anointed shall go
forth and bring forth fruit, and their fruit shall remain.
TONGUES AND INTERPRETATION: “Behold,
now is the day of decision. Yield now while the moment of
pressure by the presence of God comes. Yield now and make
your consecration to God.”
The altar is ready now for all who will