Chapter # 10 Paragraph # 2 Study # 6
April 28, 2009
Lincolnton, N.C.

<492> Thesis: The availability of salvation is wide open when the issue is national heritage. Introduction: A few weeks ago we addressed what was once called "the lordship salvation debate". In that debate the "heat" was all about whether "faith" was "frontloaded" with the necessity of surrender to the lordship of Jesus or "unloaded" so that there was no necessity at all. The text that brought that to the fore was Paul's declaration that a "mouth" confession of "Lord Jesus" that was in harmony with a "heart" belief that God had raised Him from the dead would result in "salvation". I think the "debate" missed the point of Paul's words altogether. In a like manner, this evening's text has also been used in a wide ranging debate over a different theological issue. The text promises an indiscriminate richness to all who call upon the name of the Lord. In the light of this promise, there has sprung up a strong debate over the meaning of God's declaration that it is He Who determines if and/or when He shall show the mercy of this salvation. It was Paul's conclusion in Romans 9:16 that whether a person received this mercy was "not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that hath mercy." In opposition to this conclusion, there has been raised the objection that the Bible teaches "whosoever will", or, as our current text reads, "whosoever shall call". There are several issues involved here. The absolute first is the meaning of the texts as Paul wrote them. Then there is the issue of the reasons for the "debate". And there is the issue of the attempt to "pit" Scripture against Scripture so that the result is that a person takes his/her understanding of one of the texts to heart and rejects any serious consideration of the other text pretty much altogether. This evening we are going to attempt to simply understand what Paul meant by his words so that we can "blend" the teaching of Scripture into an integrated, non-conflicting whole.