|Romans 9||Romans 10||Romans 11|
Israel's Election by God
Israel's Rejection of God
|God's Ways Higher
God Not Rejecting Israel
Romans 10:12-15 Commentary
|Greek: Pas gar os an epikalesetai (3SAMS) to onoma kuriou sothesetai. (3SFPI)
Amplified: For everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord [invoking Him as Lord] will be saved. (Amplified Bible - Lockman)
ESV: For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (ESV)
ICB: The Scripture says, "Anyone who asks the Lord for help will be saved." (ICB: Nelson)
NIV: for, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (NIV - IBS)
NKJV: For "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved."
NLT: For "Anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (NLT - Tyndale House)
Phillips: For: 'Whoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved'. (Phillips: Touchstone)
Wuest: For whoever shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved. (Eerdmans)
Young's Literal: for every one -- whoever shall call upon the name of the Lord, he shall be saved.'
FOR WHOEVER WILL CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED: Pas gar os an epikalesetai (3SAMS) to onoma kuriou sothesetai. (3SFPI) :
Joel 2:32 “And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of the LORD Will be delivered; For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem There will be those who escape, As the LORD has said, Even among the survivors whom the LORD calls.
Acts 2:21 ‘AND IT SHALL BE, THAT EVERYONE WHO CALLS ON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.’
For (gar) explains why there is no distinction (Ro 10:12). Always pause and ponder this strategic term of explanation.
Whoever (pas) is literally all or everyone and leaves no room for any exceptions. This is a truth that should blunt every argument about the exclusivity of the "narrow way" (cp Jesus' teaching - Mt 7:13, 14-note, cp Lk 13:24, Jn 14:6). "Narrow" yes but "exclusive" no! For the gospel is for "whoever".
We see a parallel truth about the heart of our gracious, giving God in Peter's affirmation that "The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. (2Pe 3:9-note)
Paul echoes Peter's affirmation writing that "This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. (1Ti 2:3, 4)
Will call upon (1941) (epikaleomai see discussion of this verb at Ro 10:14). Note Paul's use of the reflexive middle voice, which speaks of the personal involvement of the "callee" so to speak in this action. In other words, the middle voice signifies that the subject initiates the action and participates in the results/effects of that action.
THE NAME ABOVE ALL NAMES
The Name of the LORD (Jehovah = Jesus) is a strong tower.
The righteous runs into it and is safe (lifted up).
The name - Note the definite article (to onoma) in Greek (which is like "the" in English, so we say give me "the cup" [my favorite] not "a cup" [any cup in the cupboard), which defines this as the specific Name. It is not just any name the sinner is to call upon, but the Name above all names (Php 2:9, 10, 11-note) and the only Name by which men are saved (Acts 4:12). It is no wonder that the cults always seek somehow to distort the meaning of this most glorious, all sufficient Name, perpetrating as it were "another Jesus" a deadly, deceptive ruse of which Paul warned (2Co 11:4). There is only One Jesus (Jn 14:6) and calling upon Him, calls upon all of His character, all of His attributes, etc, for these are all encompassed in His great Name. What a wonderful Savior is Jesus our Lord. Play the great old hymn as you ponder (all 6 stanzas) and praise our Father for sending us…
by Elisha Hoffman
Christ has for sin atonement made
What a wonderful Savior!
We are redeemed, the price is paid
What a wonderful Savior!
What a wonderful Savior is Jesus, my Jesus!
What a wonderful Savior is Jesus, my Lord!
Related Resource: Study the Name of the LORD - Summary Chart
Name (3686) (onoma) is the distinctive designation of a person or thing and includes the ideas of title, character, reputation or authority.
In antiquity the name meant much more than it does today. We use a name as little more than a distinguishing mark or label to differentiate one person from other people. But in Scripture "the name" concisely sums up all that a person is. One's whole character is somehow implied in this name. And thus it is not surprisingly that God made very certain (sending an angel to Joseph in a dream) that the Savior received the Name that most clearly and beautifully describes His purpose in becoming a man (Lk 2:32, 1Ti 3:16, 2Ti 1:10-note, Titus 2:11-note, 1Pe 1:20-note, 1Jn 1:2)…
Paul quotes verbatim from the Septuagint (LXX) of Joel 2:32 (also quoted by Peter in his bold Pentecost sermon to the Jews = Acts 2:21) to prove this salvation is open to everyone. It is interesting that in the original Hebrew the verse is translated as follows by the NAS…
The prayer promises of Scripture are restricted to the people of God, with one notable exception, the "whoevers" who call out for salvation.
Paul had already proved that “there is no distinction” in condemnation (Ro 3:22-note) now affirms “there is no difference” in salvation. Instead of the Jew having a special righteousness of his own through the Law, he was declared to be as much a sinner as the Gentile he condemned.
The prophet Isaiah centuries earlier had issued the urgent call to…
Will be saved - This statement is given in the form of a conditional promise. If the sinner calls, whoever they are (and whatever they've done!), God opens the door (cp Rev 3:20-note). A call upon His Name will not be like so many cell phone calls in which the connection is dropped! He will answer. He will save, the humble, contrite heart that calls (cries out) "Save me Lord!" His Word of truth is just that… Trustworthy. Faithful. Dependable. Unchangeable. So dear reader, what are you waiting for? Call upon His Name now!
Will be saved (4982) (sozo [word study]) has the basic meaning of rescuing someone from great peril. Additional nuances include to protect, keep alive, preserve life, deliver, heal, be made whole. Paul is referring here to the deliverance from the guilt and power of sin which is brought about by a sinner (whoever they are) calling on the Name above all names, the very Name Jesus meaning "Jehovah is salvation" (cp Mt 1:21). If you have never meditate on this great word, you might take some time to ponder the 106 NT occurrences of sozo (click here)
Steven Cole - ALL PEOPLE NEED TO HEAR THAT THERE IS ONE WAY TO BE SAVED: TO BELIEVE IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST. Paul expresses the way to be saved in two synonymous phrases: to believe in Him (Ro 10:11); and, to call upon Him, or to call upon His name (Ro 10:12, 13). In 1Ro 0:14, he distinguishes them, as I will explain in a moment. But in Ro 10:11-13, he uses them to mean the same thing.
To believe in Christ means to rely on or trust in Him as the One who died on the cross to pay the penalty for your sin. He died as the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice which satisfied God’s wrath) for all who believe in Him, so that God can now be both just, because the penalty was paid, and the justifier of the one who has faith in Him (Ro 3:25-26). To believe in Christ implicitly means that you stop believing in yourself and your own good works as your hope for eternal life.
In Ro 10:13 Paul cites Joel 2:32, “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Peter quotes the same verse in his sermon in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:21). To call upon the Lord (His “name” means, who He is in all His attributes) implies that the one calling is in trouble or great need. This is reinforced by the word saved, which means that the person needs to be rescued from the great and glorious day of the Lord.
Both terms imply that the one calling out has nothing in himself to offer God. He isn’t doing basically okay, and just needs a few pointers on how to get ready for judgment. He can’t help God out. If he thinks that he can offer God anything, then he doesn’t understand his situation. He is guilty of rebellion against the holy God. If his case comes to trial, he will be condemned. So he cries out (Luke 18:13), “God, be merciful to me, the sinner!”
So Paul’s main point here is that the gospel is good news for all. Any guilty sinner, no matter how sordid his past, who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved. John Bunyan has a wonderful treatise, “The Jerusalem Sinner Saved,” based on Jesus’ words to the apostles just before His ascension (Luke 24:47), “that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations,” and then He added, “beginning from Jerusalem.” Jerusalem was the city where sinners crucified the Savior. But our sin also crucified Him. There is forgiveness for all Jerusalem sinners. Proclaim it to the nations! (Good News for All Romans 10:11-15) - Bible.org)
Call On His Name - Bible teacher Gary Burge stood at one end of a long, empty Gaza street. He was in Israel to do research for a book about Palestinian believers, and he wanted to talk to a Dr. Hassan at the Ali Arab hospital. The hospital was at the other end of the street, so he started walking. He soon discovered why the street was empty. On one side was the Israeli militia; on the other were Palestinian youths.
This entire section emphasizes the difference between “Law righteousness” and “faith righteousness.” The contrasts are seen in the following summary.
Amplified: But how are people to call upon Him Whom they have not believed [in Whom they have no faith, on Whom they have no reliance]? And how are they to believe in Him [adhere to, trust in, and rely upon Him] of Whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher? (Amplified Bible - Lockman)
ESV: But how are they to call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? (ESV)
ICB: But before people can trust in the Lord for help, they must believe in him. And before they can believe in the Lord, they must hear about him. And for them to hear about the Lord, someone must tell them. (ICB: Nelson)
NIV: How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? (NIV - IBS)
NKJV: 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?
NLT: But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? (NLT - Tyndale House)
Phillips: Now how can they call on one in whom they have never believed? How can they believe in one of whom they have never heard? And how can they hear unless someone proclaims him? (Phillips: Touchstone)
Wuest: How is it possible then that they shall call upon the One in whom they did not believe? Moreover, how is it possible that they will believe on the One concerning whom they did not hear? And how is it possible that they shall hear without one who proclaims? (Eerdmans)
Young's Literal: How then shall they call upon him in whom they did not believe? and how shall they believe on him of whom they did not hear? and how shall they hear apart from one preaching?
|HOW THEN SHALL THEY CALL UPON HIM IN WHOM THEY HAVE NOT BELIEVED: Pos oun epikalesontai (3PAMS) eis on ouk episteusan (3PAAI): (1Kings 8:41-43; Jonah 1:5,9, 10, 11,16; 3:5, 6, 7, 8, 9; Hebrews 11:6; James 5:15)
1Kgs 8:41 “Also concerning the foreigner who is not of Thy people Israel, when he comes from a far country for Thy name’s sake 42 (for they will hear of Thy great name and Thy mighty hand, and of Thine outstretched arm); when he comes and prays toward this house,43 hear Thou in heaven Thy dwelling place, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to Thee, in order that all the peoples of the earth may know Thy name, to fear Thee, as [do] Thy people Israel, and that they may know that this house which I have built is called by Thy name.
Jonah illustrates this principle…
MacArthur sums up Ro 10:14, 15 noting that "Paul’s main point in this series of rhetorical questions is that a clear presentation of the gospel message must precede true saving faith. True faith always has content—the revealed Word of God. Salvation comes to those who hear and believe the facts of the gospel."
They - This pronoun is repeated 4 times in the passage and in context appears to refer primarily to the Jews.
NLT Study Bible adds that "It is natural to presume that the pronoun they refers to “all who call on him” from Ro 10:12 or “everyone” from Ro 10:13. While this verse probably does refer to all people, it also continues the accusation against Israel from Ro 10:2, 3 (see Ro 10:18). (New Living Translation Study Bible. Tyndale House Publishers)
Call on… believed… heard… preacher (literally "one preaching): Note that these verbs are the reversal of the normal pattern by which one comes to believe the Gospel - The good news is proclaimed, heard, believed and the believer calls upon the Lord.
Call - In the previous passage (Ro 10:13) Paul used the same verb for "call" (epikaleomai) as he does in the beginning of this verse.
The ESV Study Bible goes on to explain the relationship between these two verse noting that - (1) People will call on Jesus to save them only if they believe he can do so; (2) belief in Christ cannot exist without knowledge about him; (3) one hears about Christ only when someone proclaims the saving message; and (4) the message about Christ will not be proclaimed unless someone is sent by God to do so.
How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?
Call upon (1941) (epikaleomai [word study] from epi = upon + kaleo = call) literally means to call upon. Epikaleomai was used as here in Romans to call upon deity for some purpose. For example in Peter's quotation from Joel 2:32 he proclaims "AND IT SHALL BE, THAT EVERYONE WHO CALLS ON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED." (Acts 2:21, used in this same sense in Ro 10:12, 13)
Stephen with his dying words called upon the Lord "And they went on stoning Stephen as he called upon the Lord and said, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!" (Acts 7:59, similar sense in Acts 22:16)
Ananias addressing Paul after his conversion declared "why do you delay? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on (epikaleomai) His name. (Acts 22:16)
Ryrie rightly reminds us that "Though God's election of His people is of His own free choice and not based on human merit (Ro 9:11, 23), the elect are not saved without believing the message that is preached by those who are sent (Isa. 52:7). (The Ryrie Study Bible: New American Standard Translation: 1995. Moody Publishers)
AND HOW SHALL THEY BELIEVE IN HIM WHOM THEY HAVE NOT HEARD: pos de pisteusosin (3PAAS) ou ouk ekousan (3PAAI): (Ro 1:5; 16:25,26; Mark 16:15,16; Luke 24:46,47; John 20:31; Acts 19:2; Acts 26:17,18; 2Timothy 4:17; Titus 1:3)
Paul was obedient to his Master's command = (Jesus speaking to Paul on Damascus Road) But arise, and stand on your feet; for this purpose I have appeared to you, to appoint you a minister and a witness not only to the things which you have seen, but also to the things in which I will appear to you; 17 delivering you from the [Jewish] people and from the Gentiles, to whom I am sending you, 18 to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the dominion of Satan to God, in order that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified by faith in Me.’ (Acts 26:16-18)
Whom they have not heard - MacDonald asks that "Of what use is a salvation offered to Jews and Gentiles if they never hear about it? Here we have the heartbeat of Christian missions! In a series of three “how’s” (how shall they call … believe … hear without a preacher), the apostle goes back over the steps that lead to the salvation of Jews and Gentiles. Perhaps it will be clearer if we reverse the order, as follows: God sends out His servants. They preach the good news of salvation. Sinners hear God’s offer of life in Christ. Some of those who hear believe the message. Those who believe call on the Lord. Those who call on Him are saved.
Years ago there was a great evangelist named Gipsy Smith. He was born a gypsy in England and came to Christ as a boy. Gipsy Smith used to preach up and down this country. Harry Ironside said that Gipsy Smith once came to Moody Church and spoke to the people of his conversion from a gypsy life. The people sat entranced with Gipsy's stories. At the end of the meeting Gipsy would give an altar call, and people would surge forward in great numbers. However, Dr. Ironside wondered why they were coming? Did they want to be gypsies, or what? They had really been given nothing of the gospel in which to believe. We must speak the Gospel of Jesus Christ and not stories that entertain! Does this sound like much of the modern church in America (circa 2014)?
AND HOW SHALL THEY HEAR WITHOUT A PREACHER: pos de akousosin (3PAAS) choris kerussontos (PAPMSG):
Without a preacher - Literally "apart from one preaching" and not the noun "preacher".
Preacher (2784) (kerusso [word study] or kerysso from kerux/keryx = a herald - one who acts as the medium of the authority of one who proclamation he makes; kerugma = the thing preached or the message) means to proclaim (publicly) or to herald or act as a public crier - the town official who would make a proclamation in a public gathering.
Kerusso was used of the official whose duty it was to proclaim loudly and extensively the coming of an earthly king, even as our gospel is to clearly announce the coming of the King of kings and Lord of lords (Re 10:16-note)!
The Imperial Herald would enter a town in behalf of the Emperor, and make a public proclamation of the message which his Sovereign ordered him to give, doing so with such formality, gravity, and authority as to emphasize that the message must be heeded! (Think about this in regard to the Gospel of God instead of the decree of a man! cf 1Th 2:13-note). He gave the people exactly what the Emperor bade him give, nothing more, nothing less. He did not dare add to the message or take away from it. Should this not be the example and pattern every preacher and teacher (and witnessing saint) of the holy gospel of God seeks and strives to emulate, yea, even doing so with fear and trembling! ("not as pleasing men but God, who examines our hearts" 1Th 2:4-note)
BKC adds that kerusso "means “to be a herald, to announce,” and is not limited to proclamation from a pulpit. Carrying God’s gracious offer involves human beings whom God has brought to Himself and then uses as His heralds. They share God’s message of salvation because He will save everyone who calls on His name. (Walvoord, J. F., Zuck, R. B., et al: The Bible Knowledge Commentary. 1985. Victor)
Wiersbe observes that" This passage is often used as the basis for the church’s missionary program, and rightly so, but its first application is to the nation of Israel. The only way unbelieving Jews can be saved is by calling on the Lord. But before they can call on Him, they must believe. For the Jew, this meant believing that Jesus Christ of Nazareth truly is the Son of God and the Messiah of Israel. It also meant believing in His death and resurrection (Ro 10:9, 10). But in order to believe, they must hear the Word, for it is the Word that creates faith in the heart of the hearer (Ro 10:17). This meant that a herald of the Word must be sent, and it is the Lord who does the sending. At this point, Paul could well have been remembering his own call to preach the Word to the Gentiles (Acts 13:1-3). (Wiersbe, W: Bible Exposition Commentary. 1989. Victor )
God could have chosen any means by which the message of salvation might have come (angelic messengers, direct working without a human preacher), but God’s "normal" way of bringing people to Jesus Christ is through the preaching of the gospel.
Steven Cole - Since the good news is for all, we must proclaim it to all (Ro 10:14-15) Romans 10:14-15: “How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!’”
I can only skim over these verses, but before we look at them, let me briefly address a criticism often raised by those who deny the doctrine of God’s sovereign election. They argue that the doctrine of election undermines evangelism and missions because if God has chosen someone, he will be saved. If he isn’t elect, our efforts are in vain. So, why witness?
But Paul, who wrote so strongly about God’s choice of Jacob and rejection of Esau while they were still in the womb (Ro 9:11-13), also wrote these wonderful verses about the need to preach the gospel to all people. He wasn’t contradicting himself. God chooses who will be saved and He chooses the means through which they will be saved, namely, preaching the gospel to them (2 Tim. 2:10).
Paul strings together a logical list of rhetorical questions to explain the process of how the gospel goes forth, and then backs it up with Scripture. To work from the foundation outward, the process begins with sending out preachers; they preach; people hear, believe, and call on the Lord. (Good News for All (Romans 10:11-15)
Our Daily Bread has an interesting illustration of Paul's charge to all believers, entitled "The King's Message" - On January 21, 1930, the name of Harold Vidian became synonymous with heroism. On that day, England's King George V was scheduled to give the opening address at the London Arms Conference. The king's message was to be sent by radio all around the world.
A Final Witness -If you were in the midst of a disaster, would you think to witness to people around you? John Harper did.
Undelivered Message - George Sweeting, in his book The No-Guilt Guide for Witnessing, tells of a man by the name of John Currier who in 1949 was found guilty of murder and sentenced to life in prison. Later he was transferred and paroled to work on a farm near Nashville, Tennessee.
Brother John - It's only a humorous story, yet it makes a serious point. Brother John was a timid man who dreaded speaking in public. So he was terrified on the day it was his turn to give a devotional message. With his knees trembling, he faced his listeners and said, "Do you know what I'm going to say this morning?" "No," answered the audience. He then said, "Neither do I," and he ran from the room.
Amplified: And how can men [be expected to] preach unless they are sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings! [How welcome is the coming of those who preach the good news of His good things!] (Amplified Bible - Lockman)
ESV: And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!" (ESV)
ICB: And before someone can go and tell them, he must be sent. It is written, "How beautiful is the person who comes to bring good news." (ICB: Nelson)
NIV: And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" (NIV - IBS)
NKJV: And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!"
NLT: And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" (NLT - Tyndale House)
Phillips: And how can they hear unless someone proclaims him? And who will go to tell them unless he is sent? As the scripture puts it: 'How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the Gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!' (Phillips: Touchstone)
Wuest: And how is it possible that they shall make a proclamation except they be sent on a mission? Even as it stands written, How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good tidings of good things. (Eerdmans)
Young's Literal: and how shall they preach, if they may not be sent? according as it hath been written, 'How beautiful the feet of those proclaiming good tidings of peace, of those proclaiming good tidings of the good things!'
|AND HOW SHALL THEY PREACH UNLESS THEY ARE SENT: pos de keruxosin (3PAAS) ean me apostalosin (3PAPS): (Jeremiah 23:32; Matthew 9:38; 10:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6; 28:18, 19, 20; Luke 10:1; John 20:21; Acts 9:15; Acts 13:2, 3, 4; 22:21; 1Corinthians 12:28,29; 2Corinthians 5:18, 19, 20; Ephesians 3:8; 4:11,12; 1Peter 1:12)
All disciples have been sent - "And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 “Go therefore and make disciples (not a suggestion, but a command - they only way to obey it is to surrender to the Spirit and allow Him to enable us to make disciples) of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matt 28:18-20)
They are sent - Don't miss this - God is the One Who sends. We need to listen for that still small voice that we might hear His call. To be sure some are literally (in body) sent to unreached people groups, but all believers are sent (in spirit - through intercessory prayer) to unreached people groups. I have a feeling that some of the greatest missionaries this world has never known will be little old ladies who were confined physically to their wheelchair or their home and yet they traveled (via the prayer air waves) to more countries than any missionary could have ever done physically! You may say "I am a 'lesser' part of the body. God cannot really use me." You are wrong. The devil wants you to believe that lie, but he trembles at those "no bodies" who daily, faithfully drop to their knees and cry out for those who are lost in darkness (cp Paul's being "sent" = Acts 26:17, 18) in every continent of the globe. So may I suggest you get involved on the "front lines" (via prayer, which I have found is far more difficult and challenging than funding a matching grant for some well known ministry - not that the latter is wrong of course!). You say, I don't really know how to be sent.
Sent (649) (apostello from apo = from + stello = appoint to position) literally means to send forth. It can convey the bestowal of a commission, to perform a special task with empowerment of the authority of the sender (in this case God, cp the necessary empowerment for the early church and for the modern church, Acts 1:8).
Scripture to verify that bearers of the good news must be “sent” (this term is the verb form of the noun translated “apostle,” hence “apostled”); people are not saved without the opportunity to hear. [Isa 52:7] announced that there was good news, but heralds still had to bring it to the people. Several verses after [Isa52:7], Isaiah reports the response to the good news the heralds bring (Isa 53:1), and Paul’s readers probably know how this text continues: Israel rejected the good news (Isa 53:2-3). Then begin a lifelong journey of daily prayer for the hidden, unreached peoples of the world using as your guide the excellent resource The Global Prayer Digest (save this link to your toolbar favorites as each day there is a new prayer topic). I believer that through this vehicle of Spirit led intercessory, missionary prayer, our Father in heaven has given each of us as His children the incredible privilege of storing up for ourselves treasure in heaven in the the form of "human souls" (cp Mt 6:20-note, 1Th 2:19, 20-note, Lk 10:2, Col 4:2,3-note, 2Th 3:1, Rev 7:9-note)
If you are a blood bought, heaven bound believer, I submit that you have been "sent". Listen to Paul…
And we can always obey our Lord's charge to…
And so to be "sent" suggests at least two things, first, that one operates under a higher authority and secondly that his message does not originate with himself but is given him by the sending authority (God). The prophets were men who were sent in these two respects as was even the Lord Jesus (Jn 3:34; 7:16). The apostles received their commission from the risen Lord as He in turn had been sent by the Father (Jn 20:21, cp His charge to the church = Mt 28:18, 19, 20). In addressing the Roman church, Paul was careful to state at the very beginning that he was called and set apart for the ministering of the gospel (Ro 1:1-note).
Writing to the saints at Ephesus Paul declared…
So no matter how inadequate or "little" we feel in regard to "preaching" the good news, remember that God does not want our ability as much as He wants our availability! "Less than the least" saints make good recipients of His transforming, enabling grace (cp 2Co 12:9,10- notes v9; notes v10), without which we can utter no supernatural proclamation (cp Jn 15:5)
JUST AS IT IS WRITTEN HOW BEAUTIFUL ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GLAD TIDINGS OF GOOD THINGS: kathos gegraptai, (3SRPI) Os oraioi oi podes ton euaggelizomenon (PMPMPG) [ta] agatha: (Isaiah 52:7; Nahum 1:15) (Isaiah 57:19; Luke 2:14; Acts 10:36; Ephesians 2:17; 6:15) (Isaiah 40:9; 61:1; Luke 2:10; 8:1; Acts 13:26)
Written (1125) (grapho [word study]) is in the perfect tense which emphasizes the lasting and binding authority of what God inspired the Biblical writers to record. It has been written at some point in time in the past and it "stands" written (cp "Thus saith the LORD")
Although Paul's OT quotation is taken from Isaiah 52:7 (see below), there is a parallel passage in Nahum 1:15…
Nahum is prophesying the destruction of the Assyrian Empire who were the hated enemies of the Jews. Their key city Nineveh had experienced a genuine spiritual revival (Jonah 3:5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10) some 150 years before Nahum when God sent (Jonah 3:2, 3, 4) the beautiful feet of a reluctant prophet Jonah (Jonah 1:2, 3, 4:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11). God had patiently dealt with Nineveh, but now His judgment was going to fall and that was "good news" for the Jews.
Like Nahum's “good news” of peace, God's messengers brought good news of peace with God (Ro 5:1-note), and this is what made the messenger's feet so beautiful (to those who received the message - 1Th 2:13-note).
Paul quotes from Isaiah 52:7 so it behooves the diligent student of Scripture to examine the context of that original passage to most accurately interpret the original prophecy which was addressed not to the Gentiles but to Israel…
Paul applied Isaiah's quotation to the messengers of the Gospel taking the Good News (especially to Israel) today (Beloved, have you ever shared the good news of the Messiah with a Jew?). The “peace” spoken of is “peace with God” (Ro 5:1-note) and the peace Christ has effected between Jews and Gentiles by forming the one body, the church (Ep 2:13, 14, 15, 16, 17-notes).
And so from the original context of Isaiah 52, we understand that God was prophesying the bestowal of His favor upon the holy city of Jerusalem was to be destroyed by the Babylonians (Isaiah prophesied before the fall of Jerusalem in 586BC). The ultimate fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy would be marked by the return of the Messiah and the inauguration of His Millennial Kingdom. These tidings are good, for they announce the age of peace when the Prince of peace returns to reign in peace. Paul changes the wording somewhat--the single announcer in Isaiah becomes "they" which depicts all messengers of the good news (not just the formal clergy but every redeemed saint because every redeemed saint has a personal message of "good news" = their testimony. See My Testimony).
Steven Cole - SENDING: WE SHOULD ASK THE LORD OF THE HARVEST TO SEND OUT WORKERS INTO THE HARVEST. Romans 10:15a: “How will they preach unless they are sent?” God saved Paul and appointed him as a minister and a witness, sending him to the Gentiles (Acts 22:21; 26:16-17). The church acts as a secondary sender, affirming God’s call to those He sends (Acts 13:1-3). To take the gospel to every people, as Jesus commanded in the Great Commission (Matt. 28:19-20; Luke 24:49), those who are sent out need to cross cultural and linguistic barriers to communicate the gospel to those who have not heard. Jesus instructed us (Matt. 9:38), “Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.” So we who have experienced God’s gracious salvation should pray for workers to be sent out. We should support such workers financially, emotionally, and in prayer when they go out to difficult places. And, some of us may be called to go ourselves.
B. PREACHING: THE SENT ONES PROCLAIM THE AUTHORITATIVE MESSAGE OF THE KING REGARDING HIS SON. Preach and preacher come from the Greek word meaning herald. The herald was sent out under the authority of the king to proclaim faithfully the king’s message. He didn’t make up his own message that would be more palatable to the hearers. He might get killed by an angry mob who didn’t like the king’s message, but he still had to tell them the truth. Those sent out with the gospel cannot tweak it to fit what people may want to hear. They have to tell them that they have sinned against the holy God and rightfully are under His judgment so that they will see their need for the Savior. They have to confront people’s universal belief that they are good enough to merit salvation so that they will abandon their good works and call on the Lord to save them.
C. HEARING: THOSE WHO HEAR THE PREACHER MUST UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY HEAR. This implies that those sent must be able to communicate in the language and culture of the hearers, but also that they not compromise the message in an attempt not to offend. The cross is inherently offensive, because it confronts our sin. This also means that as the sent ones proclaim the gospel, the Holy Spirit must open the deaf ears of the hearers, who cannot understand spiritual truth (1Cor. 2:14; Acts 16:14; Isa. 6:9-10). Thus the proclamation of the gospel must always be undergirded with prayer.
D. BELIEVING AND CALLING ON THE LORD: THE MESSAGE MUST BE BELIEVED TO BE EFFECTIVE. As I said, in Ro 10:11-13, Paul uses believing in Christ and calling upon His name somewhat interchangeably. But in Ro 10:14, he separates them to bring out two aspects of saving faith. People must believe in the sense of giving assent to the truth of the gospel or they will not call on Him for salvation. If you do not believe that Jesus is who He claimed to be and that God raised Him from the dead, you won’t cry out to Him to save you. And so a person must believe intellectually that Jesus is the risen Savior, but also he must call out to Him to save him from his sins. Intellectual belief alone without commitment is not saving faith. Finally,
E. THE MESSAGE BELIEVED: “GOOD NEWS OF GOOD THINGS.” Paul again (Ro 10:15b) cites Scripture (Isa. 52:7), “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things.” You don’t normally look at a person’s feet, especially dirty, callused, bleeding feet, and say, “Wow, what a beautiful person!” But this person has dirtied and bloodied his feet to bring good news of good things: God will freely forgive all your sins through Jesus Christ if you will believe in Him and call out to Him to save you!
If we preach, “If you will clean up your life and try hard to obey God and not sin, you might earn a spot in heaven, although you can never be sure,” we’re not preaching good news. Any message of doing good works to earn salvation is not good news, because it depends on sinful people and sinful people inevitably fail and fall short. The good news is, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.” That’s the wonderful news that we proclaim.
Conclusion - As long as there are billions of people that have never heard that news, we must commit ourselves to getting the good news to them. There is an African proverb, “There is only one crime worse than murder on the desert, and that is to know where the water is and not tell.” We know where the water is! We’ve got the greatest news in the world: God forgives every sinner who trusts in Jesus as Lord and Savior! We’ve got to tell everyone.
Here are a few practical steps. First, begin locally. Begin praying for the salvation of those you have regular contact with. Pray for opportunities to talk to them about the Savior. Reach out to the international students in our city. Second, educate yourself about world missions. Read about missions. Join one of our A-teams. Pray for our missionaries. Give to the cause of missions, especially to those trying to take the gospel to those who have yet to hear. Finally, God may call some of you to go to those who have never heard. With Isaiah (6:8) respond, “Here I am. Send me!” (Good News for All Romans 10:11-15)
Beautiful Feet-When challenged to speak to others about Christ, some believers excuse their silence by saying, "Well, I am not a preacher." But every follower of Jesus is (or at least should be) a preacher. We don't need a pulpit. It can be done in friendly conversation, by handing out a tract or portion of Scripture, by writing a letter, or by singing a song.
Here's another story about "beautiful feet" from Our Daily Bread… In 1983 at age 16, an English girl began an 11-year trek around the world--on foot! Why did she do it? She said, "I had to discover myself."