Whoever . . .

Vol. 3, No. 38
For whoever will call upon the Name of the Lord will be saved. Romans 10:13

I taught classes in Comparative Religions, from the view of mainline religions, evangelical beliefs, cults, and even the occult.

There are comparative religions, but the Christian religion is not one of them. We must always be careful to place the Christian Gospel in a state of glorious isolation. –Joseph Parker

One of the things I would have wished Joseph Parker to say is: “but the Christian holds not to a religion, but to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

The Christian relationship is incomparable, not because of the place, or even the date of its origin; but simply and solely because it is essentially the Gospel of an incomparable Savior.

How would we fairly sum up the teaching of Confucius, Buddha, Mohammed, or the follower of Hinduism? These hold themselves to be counsels of “perfection;” they exude maxims of conduct, and they offer people of the earth what they consider to be “good advice.” Religions such as these are about man seeking after their god; not the Almighty God.

What is the essential characteristic of the Christian Gospel? It is the Good News! It is God seeking after humankind; chasing humankind with His grace. It is a message direct from heaven to earth; it is God’s Son willingly coming for our rescue. It tells how it is possible for guilty sinners to be at peace with their Creator, and thereafter to live in a state of peace, purity, and power.

Christianity is not only historical and doctrinal, but experiential. We are not called upon to achieve salvation; we are asked to accept salvation because it is the free gift of God.

Those who do so in simple faith, discover that the Almighty gives power at that very moment to accept His divine grace and mercy. Salvation is a provision, but it is provisional; it has been provided, but it must be appropriated individually to be effective in our lives.

It is not to all who are sincere, moral, religious, and kind; but to all who call upon the Name of the Lord. Here the divine’s redemption joins human responsibility and response. –Laurin

The Old Testament prophet, Joel, first penned this promise (2:32) and it reminds Israel, as well as incoming Gentiles, the Name of the Lord signifies the Lord Himself.

Calling upon the Name of the Lord denotes a full and entire communion with God. He who will call on the Name of the Lord profoundly humbles himself before God, recognizes His power, adores His majesty, believes His promises, confides in His goodness, hopes in His mercy, honors Him as his God, and lives for Him as Savior. –Robert Haldane, Scottish and Swiss theologian

Good News!

Christ died for our sins; He was buried, and He was raised for you and for me. Everyone needs to hear this; needs to believe this. Unfortunately, today’s evangelical believer does more sitting on their “rusty dusties” than they do getting on their feet and doing what Christ expects. Christianity is about your obedience to Christ’s expectations. It does not diminish with age.

The Gospel, the Good News, is a “be-saved” plea, not a “save-yourself salvation gimmick.”

What are you doing to reach the unchurched/unsaved people within the five-miles (and beyond) of your church?

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Written by Dr. Larry Lightner

September 23, 2018

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