"For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)
It is fairly common to find a list of Emergency Contact Numbers stuck on the side of a refrigerator. This little list will typically include phone numbers for the poison control center, the local police department, the doctor’s office, grandma, and of course the phone number for the nearest pizza delivery restaurant. The fact of the matter is, it is a good idea to have important phone numbers handy, you just never know when an emergency will strike and you may need to get in touch with the right people to help.
Far more importantly, it is paramount that we know Who to call upon for salvation. The apostle Paul is crystal clear: Call upon the Lord for salvation. This leads us to wonder one very vital question, “What exactly does it mean to for a person to call upon the name of the Lord?”
Throughout the Bible men and women call out to the Lord. Jonah, from the belly of a fish, prays to God for deliverance by calling out to the Lord (Jonah 2:2). We learn that the Psalmist calls upon the Lord for deliverance (Psalm 81:7). Peter calls out to the Lord for rescue as he begins to sink into the Sea of Galilee (Matthew 14:30). In all of these instances (which barely skim the surface of the passages that refer to calling upon the Lord) we would do well to note the sense of desperation on the part of the one calling out to God and more-so to note both the grace and faithfulness of God to respond to the call!
These genuine, sincere, and faith-full yearnings to God show us calling out to God is more than picking up the phone and ordering a pizza. The call upon God for salvation is more than calling a taxi for a lift when your car leaves you stranded on the highway. In fact, calling on the name of Lord, at least in the manner Paul describes, involves soul-conviction that God and God alone is the only Being capable of answering the call of salvation. Calling out to God in such a way means placing faith in Him.
In Romans 10:13 the apostle was actually drawing from the Old Testament as he unpacked his case for sinner’s salvation. The prophet Joel proclaimed, “And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Joel 2:32a). How reassuring to know God is ready to hear the call of His people and respond with salvation! God was ready to save during the time of Abraham, the time of David, the time of Peter, and He remains faithful to save today. Would you place soul-saving faith in God now? That is, would you call upon Christ for salvation?