OCTOBER 5, 2023
One of the more interesting terms used in the Bible is the word "called". God is the One who does the calling in the Bible and we are the ones who respond to this calling. He does so in a number of important ways. One of the most important questions we can ask about God’s calling is this: does God call everyone to believe in Jesus Christ and receive the gospel? The answer is yes, in a certain sense. Let me explain.
The gospel goes out to people over most of the world even though some have restricted access to hearing it. People in the 10/40 window (often called "The Resistant Belt", see image) includes people between 10 and 40 degrees north latitude where the majority of the world's Muslims, Hindus, and Buddhists live. This area has very restricted access to the gospel and yet the goal of all Christians is to help get the message to these people. And someday, God promises that He will (Matthew 24:14). In the meantime, God starts the calling process through what is seen in creation, as Romans 1:20 explains.
And yet in another sense, not everyone has the same calling. Consider Matthew 22:14, where it says that while many are called, few are chosen. This indicates there is another more effective calling (being "chosen") that the gospel makes for those who will eventually believe it that not all those who are called will experience.
Beyond that, for those who will believe the gospel, there is yet another calling that everyone should embrace once they commit their lives to Jesus, one that all of us who are Christians are urged to be a part with no exceptions.
And even further for a small subset of those who are Christians, there is yet another calling that some will engage in. Pastor Brian Pawlowski will be an example of this when he is ordained into the gospel ministry during our services on Sunday.
If this seems a little confusing, we’ll clear up the confusion on Sunday in my message. Be sure you’re there to understand God’s calling and to celebrate this special and sacred day with the Pawlowski’s.