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In hope of ETERNAL LIFE, which God, that cannot lie, PROMISED BEFORE THE WORLD BEGAN (the Plan). -- Titus 1:2

. . . For whoso FINDETH ME findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD. -- Pro. 8:35

But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and IN THY HEART: that is, the WORD OF FAITH, which we preach; That if thou shalt CONFESS with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and SHALT BELIEVE in thine HEART that God hath raised him from the dead, THOU SHALT BE SAVED. For with the HEART man BELIEVETH UNTO RIGHTEOUSNESS; and with the mouth CONFESSION is made UNTO SALVATION. For the scripture saith, Whosoever BELIEVETH ON HIM (Isa. 28:16) shall not be ashamed. For there is NO DIFFERENCE between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that CALL UPON HIM. For whosoever shall CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD shall be saved. How then shall they CALL ON HIM in whom they have not BELIEVED? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? -- Rom. 10:8 - 14

For this commandment which I command thee this day, IT IS NOT HIDDEN FROM THEE, neither is it FAR OFF. It is not in heaven, that thou shouldst say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it down, that we may hear it, and do it? Neither is it beyond the sea, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go over the sea, for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? But the WORD IS VERY NIGH UNTO THEE, and in thy mouth, an IN THY HEART, that thou mayest do it. -- Deut. 30:11-14

Before the world began, God promised eternal life. Finding and trusting the LORD is part of God’s plan, whether O.T or N.T. The salvation of a man in the N.T. is such that someone is sent to preach to him - a preacher (vs. 14, 15). The man must hear the preaching, but he cannot hear without a preacher (vs. 14). After hearing, the man must believe or exercise faith. After believing, the man belongs to the people that call on the LORD out of a pure heart brought about by faith. The man then makes confession unto the salvation that he now possesses. A man that knows the Lord, trusts the Lord, and believes the LORD shall be saved, whether in the O.T. or the N.T. Paul connects Romans 10 with the Old Testament, namely, Deut 30:11-14, Isaiah and with another connection to Joel. The calling on the LORD that he speaks about is rooted in the LAW.

O.T. and N.T. Israel Call on the Lord

For what nation is there so great, who hath God SO NIGH unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we CALL UPON HIM for? -- Ps. 99:6

Calling on the Lord became a New Testament term; it was originally an Old Testament expression. It was not unusual for Israel to call upon the LORD. What was unusual was when Gentiles and all nations under the all embracing "whosoever" were now invited to call upon him. Calling on the LORD runs though every dispensation as does the blood and faith. In this respect there is absolutely NO DIFFERENCE between the O.T. Jew and the N.T. Greek.

Calling on the Lord in the Beginning

And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to CALL UPON the NAME of the LORD. -- Gen. 4:26

Calling on the Lord goes back to the Adams’ family dispensation, which were, for all practical purposes, O.T. Gentiles not under the Mosaic Law. Since the Mosaic Law was nonexistent, something or someone had to save them after the fall. Noah found GRACE in the eyes of the Lord and the Adams were clothed by God in slain animal skins. Able’s sacrifice was like our baptism, a witness that he was righteous by faith (Heb. 11:4). God saved them on the basis of their awaited Messiah’s death, burial, and resurrection, although they were ignorant of the details involved.

Calling on the Lord under the Patriarchs

And Abraham planted a grove (watch out you anti-tree fellows) in Beersheba, and called upon the name of the LORD, the everlasting God. -- Gen. 21:33

And he (Isaac) builded an Altar there, and CALLED UPON the NAME of the LORD . . . -- Gen. 26:25

The early O.T. saints and patriarchs called on the Lord and offered the proper blood sacrifice, learning from their parents as there were no written scripture as of yet. Yet, we are reckoned Abraham's seed and heirs according to PROMISE (Gal. 3:29) and Isaac's seed who portrayed Christ in figure (Heb. 11:17-19) with Isaac even being called Abraham's only begotten son. These all died IN FAITH NOT IN WORKS (Heb. 13:13).

Calling on the Lord Under the Law Was O.T. Faith Identification

Moses and Aaron among his priests, and Samuel among them that CALL UPON HIS NAME; they CALLED UPON THE LORD, and he answered them. -- Psa. 99:6

And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD: and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. . . . -- 1 Kings 18:24-26

Elijah made sure everyone knew that he identified with the true LORD God, whom He called upon in conjunction with a faith sacrifice and that his enemies identified with Baal, upon whom they called. He made a testimony contest out of it to demonstrate that His God was the true God and the Almighty God. Moses, Aaron, and Samuel called on the Lord under the law and exercised the same faith as did the patriarchs and early saints.

Calling on the Lord Was N.T. Identification in Acts and Epistles

And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that CALL ON THY NAME. -- Acts 9:14

But all that heard him were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which CALLED ON HIS NAME in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound . . . -- Acts 9:21

Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place CALL UPON THE NAME of Jesus Christ our Lord . . . -- 1 Cor. 1:2

As with the O.T., the N.T. saints were identified by calling on the name of the LORD, having had a proper faith sacrifice revealed to them in every dispensation. In one case, John preached the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world, and later, the cross of Christ was preached also to them that believed. Even their enemies knew how to determine who was saved and who was not, even though over-disps are not able to distinguish who is who in the O.T., the Gospels, and sometimes even the N.T.

N.T. Saints Called on the LORD, After Belief, Baptism, & at Death

And they stoned Stephen, CALLING upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. -- Acts 7:59

And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, CALLING ON THE NAME OF THE LORD. -- Acts 22:16

Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that CALL ON THE LORD out of a pure heart. -- 2 Tim. 2:22

Whether Stephen at his death or Paul at his baptism or the O.T. Saints, they were not requesting salvation by calling on the LORD. They were already saved, having hearts purified BY FAITH. They called on the LORD, identifying themselves with Him and His blood sacrifice as a testimony to Him. That is the word of faith that we preach.

Calling on the Lord, the Difference between Knowing the Lord and Not

Have all the workers of iniquity NO KNOWLEDGE? who eat up my people as they eat bread, and CALL NOT UPON THE LORD. -- Psa. 14:4

Have the workers of iniquity NO KNOWLEDGE? who eat up my people as they eat bread: they have NOT CALLED UPON GOD. -- Psa. 53:4

I will CALL UPON THE LORD, who is worthy to be praised . . . -- Psa. 18:3

Pour out thy wrath upon the heathen that HAVE NOT KNOWN THEE, and upon the kingdoms that have NOT CALLED UPON THY NAME. -- Psa. 79:6

Those, who do not call upon the name of Lord do not KNOW Him. They are lost - not saved in either Testament. They lack saving faith. They always persecute those who do (as Esau did Isaac), if given the opportunity, when they find themselves in the politically correct environment. Clearly, they are the enemies of the righteous and are workers of iniquity without knowledge in either Testament. You must KNOW the Lord in BOTH Testaments.

Calling on the Lord Is a Believer's Witness

Give thanks unto the LORD, CALL UPON HIS NAME, make known his deeds among the people. -- 1 Chr. 16:8 (also Psa. 105:1)

Not only is calling on the name of the LORD an identification with Him; it is also a witness to those, who surround believers. They declare that there is one God and one LORD, and that He expects to be called upon IN FAITH. This has not changed from the Old Testament days.

Calling on the Lord Before or After Salvation?

I will take the cup of SALVATION, and CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD. -- Psa. 116:13

Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I CALL UPON HIM as long as I live. -- Psa. 116:2

In the Old Testament like the New Testament men began to call on the Lord after they believed in him. For how should they call on him in whom they have not believed? This calling continued until their death in any dispensation without loss of salvation. Still, they did not just recite a little 1-2-3 prayer to get salvation. The heart belief is what receives salvation. Saul received a NEW HEART, after he was saved, before the Lord had to dethrone and kill him. He did not go to hell; Saul joined his sons and Samuel the next day in Abraham’s bosom (1 Sam. 28:19). Believers call on the Lord after they believe and are saved.

What Was Israel Told About the Future?

And it shall come to pass, that WHOSOEVER shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the REMNANT whom the LORD shall call. -- Joel 2:32

Did Joel's prophecy inform them that something different was going to happen in the future? Yes, indeed. He was not only going to deliver a remnant of Jews but also WHOSOEVER CALLED on the Lord, even the Gentiles. Yet he was not telling them that Jews would BEGIN to call on the Lord for they had been doing that since the beginning in the Adams’ family. So, what was going to be different? The difference was that it was not just Jews but also the Gentiles that would CALL ON the Lord. WHOSOEVER! The promise was made also to any Gentiles calling on the Lord (as the Jews had always done), God including the Gentiles with the people that call on the LORD.

Joel's Calling on the Lord Prophecy Fulfilled

And it shall come to pass, that WHOSOEVER SHALL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD shall be saved. -- Acts 2:21

That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, UPON WHOM MY NAME IS CALLED, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things. -- Acts 15:17

God's Spirit was poured out visibly and audibly at Pentecost. Clearly, there were Jews and Proselytes and Galilean Gentiles and whosoever would by faith, receive, embrace, and identify with the LORD and His blood sacrifice. They had the promise of salvation regardless of nationality or race.


Calling on the Lord with a faith identification and connection to the proper blood sacrifice which is revealed in any and every dispensation is a guarantee that whosoever shall call upon the Lord shall be saved in each and every and any dispensation. The works assignments, stewardship, and ordinances may change and differ, but the faith plan is the same. Unfortunately, many folks see the different dispensations as only different periods of time with different plans of Salvation, placing some of the over lappers in a situation of having more than one plan of salvation. This is neither reasonable nor wise Bible interpretation. The word dispensation concerns stewardship responsibility that is committed to certain groups of people over the course of the age. The stewardship is dependent on the particular revelation or covenant that is given to these groups. Faith saves them, but the content of that faith is dependent on God’s increasingly progressive revelation and His attached stewardship. Nevertheless, there is a common, consistent thread of knowing the Lord, faith, calling on the Name of the LORD, blood, sacrifice, revelation, and promise of the Messiah that weaves through the O.T. tapestry of God’s redemptive plan that has existed from the foundation of the world.

-- by Herb Evans


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