A vocation is defined in the dictionary as: “(1) a call, summons, or impulsion to perform a certain function or enter a certain career, esp. a religious one. (2) any trade, profession, or occupation.” Vocation for the Christian is really God’s work and how God works through us to do His will. It is living our lives for Him in accord with God’s will and to His glory.

Jesus’ vocation was to do the will of His heavenly Father (John 4:34; 17:4). He came to serve, not to be served (Matthew 20:28). His mission was to win salvation for the whole world. In order to do this, Jesus was born of the Virgin to live a perfect life under the will of God. This He accomplished while suffering and dying on the cross. He resurrected overcoming sin, death, and the devil.

The practical application of this vocation of Jesus is that through His life, death, and resurrection, forgiveness of sins has been won for everyone. No one is excluded. Thank God that Jesus carried out His vocation, even in the midst of adversity. Jesus’ vocation while living on this earth brought Him rejection, discomfort, disappointment. But He remained determined. The inspired prophet Isaiah describes this Servant (Christ) resolutely facing His suffering, “I set my face like flint” (Isaiah 50:7). The Book of Hebrews describes Jesus as “the Author and Perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross” (Hebrews 12:2). Although the term “joy” in this passage can certainly refer to future thoughts of heaven, it also can rightly be understood as the willingness of Jesus to fulfill His earthly vocation, yes, willingly, lovingly and joyfully.

The vocation of Jesus was in order to fulfill his mission (cf. Lk 4:18-19):

  • Jesus had been sent to preach the good news to the poor.
  • To proclaim liberty to captives.
  • To give sight to the blind.
  • To set the oppressed free.
  • To bring the salvation to all mankind.
  • To lay down his life that the world may live.


For the next encounter:

  1. Did Jesus have a vocation?
  2. What do we understand by the word ‘vocation’?
  3. What was the vocation of Jesus? Describe it.
  4. Who gave it to him?
  5. For what purpose?
  6. How did He live up to it?
  7. What was the outcome of his living up to his vocation?
  • For himself?
  • For us?
  • For the World?

Rev. Eusebe-H. Menard