Where does the practice of calling on the name of the Lord come from? Who started it? Is it just a fancy way to refer to prayer, or is there something more? Search the depths of the Bible with us and find out what this practice can do for you in your Christian pursuit.
Isaiah 12:3-4 Therefore with joy you will draw water From the wells of salvation. 4 And in that day you will say: “Praise the LORD, call upon His name; Declare His deeds among the peoples, Make mention that His name is exalted.” – NKJV
Acts 2:21 And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Acts 22:16 And now, why do you delay? Rise up and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on His name.
1 Corinthians 1:1-3 Paul, a called apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, and Sosthenes the brother, 2 To the church of God which is in Corinth, to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, the called saints, with all those who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ in every place, who is theirs and ours: 3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Fellowship to help us know Christ and pursue Him
A saint is simply a believer, one who has the life of God. The apostle Paul had no problem calling the believers in Corinth saints. The church in that place was one with many problems, yet the apostle still called them saints. Saints refers to those who were redeemed by Christ’s blood. Since this is so, you also may boldly say, “I am a saint!”. This does not mean that God is finished with us. He still needs to spread through all our being, through our mind, emotion, and will. This process is called sanctification and all the saints are in this process. 1 Thessalonians 4:3 says, “For this is the will of God, your sanctification.” The first step of our Christian life is also the first step of our sanctification. This happened already when we believed in the Lord Jesus and received His life. This is why the apostle refers to the saints as those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus.
We were chosen by God, predestinated and called– to be holy. We know this from Ephesians 1:4. You might say that this is what the Christian life is all about. To be holy is to be separated from everything common. It also means to be filled with the One who is holy. Holiness is God’s nature. Only He is holy. God begins the process of making us holy when He comes in to be our life. This happened when we believed in the Lord. He came into our deepest part, into our human spirit. John 3:6 says, “that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” We cannot deny that our regenerated human spirit is filled with the life of God, with the One who is holy.
1 Thessalonians 5:23 says, “And the God of peace Himself sanctify you wholly, and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”. We are sanctified in Christ Jesus in our spirit, and we are in the middle of being wholly sanctified as He spreads to every part of our being.
May we come to Him again and again, and let Him spread. A song that encapsulates 1 Thessalonians 5:23 is God is spreading in my being. God sanctifies us, even as we sing spiritual songs like these.
This is another great song that conveys the burden found in the introduction to 1 Corinthians.
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1 Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has regenerated us unto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
1 Peter 1:23 Having been regenerated not of corruptible seed but of incorruptible, through the living and abiding word of God.
1 John 5:1a Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been begotten of God
Fellowship to help us know Christ and pursue Him
From these verses, we can see that regeneration is to receive Christ, who is the life-giving Spirit, into us as our life. To receive this life, we need to repent to God and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.
To say that Christ is our life now is not a figurative statement. Christ being our life does not merely mean that we are now completely focused on Him. Rather, this means that we have literally another life, a new life, which we didn’t have before. Humans have the human life, dogs have the dog life, cats have the cat life, and believers have God’s life! The following short quotation emphasizes that by regeneration, we obtain God’s life.
Regeneration is having God enter into us as life—having the life of God in addition to our human life. This is the second life, the second birth; hence, it is called regeneration. In man’s first birth he is born of his parents, thereby receiving Adam’s life. In his second birth he is born of the Spirit and of God, thereby obtaining God’s life. Regeneration is to be born of God. (Lessons for New Believers, Lesson 1, published by Living Stream Ministry)
With this in mind, enjoy reading afresh the following passage from the gospel of John.
John 3:1-8 But there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This one came to Him by night and said to Him, Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher, for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him. 3 Jesus answered and said to him, Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless one is born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God. 4 Nicodemus said to Him, How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?
5 Jesus answered, Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born anew. 8 The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from and where it goes; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.
With the human life, if you take away the life from the person, you take away that person. In other words, you cannot separate the life from the person. We also then realize, that just as one cannot be unborn of their human life, a believer cannot be unborn of their new life from God. We cannot be un-regenerated. This is good news! You believed in the Lord Jesus Christ; you have a new life, the life of God, and this life can never be taken away from you. This is what John 3:16 means when it says, “have eternal life”.
Again, when we believe in Jesus Christ, we receive Him who is the very life of God into us, to be our new life. We are regenerated! The realization of such a fact led the author of hymn 1174 to praise unceasingly.
How mysterious! Yet how real!
Such a man now lives in me.
Into all my heart He’s spreading—
He, my human life, to be.
I will praise unceasingly.
(see the whole hymn here: https://www.hymnal.net/en/hymn/nt/1174)
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Christ’s death was all-inclusive. Come and find out all the wonderful things that our Savior accomplished on the cross. Learn to receive His salvation and learn how to apply His precious blood day by day. May the included Bible verses nourish you and strengthen you in your walk with Christ.
Precious, precious blood of Jesus
Ever flowing free;
Oh, believe it; oh, receive it,
’Tis for thee.
– classic hymn
1 John 1:8-9 If we say that we do not have sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Acts 10:43 To this One all the prophets testify that through His name everyone who believes into Him will receive forgiveness of sins.
1 John 2:12 I write to you, little children, because your sins have been forgiven you because of His name.