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August 24, 2006

I’ve been kind of meditating on the concept of salvation lately. My contention has been this:

Romans 10:9//… that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.


Matthew 33:38//And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.

I know a lot of Christians (and even more pseudo-Christians) who use Romans to assure their salvation even though they may not necessarily be doing their best to live a Christian life. I nod my head and think, “Yup, that’s what the Bible says, so I guess you’re good.” It makes salvation pretty easy: McSalvation, if you will.

Then I read passages like Matthew 33:38, and that makes it sound harder. To me, Matthew 33 is, “Go to the cross or go home,” but a lot of Romans 10:9 Christians wouldn’t be worthy of Christ by the standard set forth in Matthew 33:38 (and I’m not trying to be righteous here, there are days when I don’t like to admit which camp I’m probably in).

I sought the Lord on the matter and do you know what He told me? “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” At first that seemed to support Romans without addressing Matthew and I was a little disappointed. Then I looked it up.

That phrase appears three times in scripture: Joel 2:32, Acts 2:21, and Romans 10:13. In Acts and Romans the author/speaker is quoting Joel, so we turn to Joel for the initial context. I’ll let you look it up (v. 31 and 32), but it’s talking about the “great and terrible day of the Lord.” It’s talking about calling on the name of the Lord in a time when you may be immediately martyred for doing so. Then I realized that Romans 10:9 was written during a time when you may have been martyred for confessing with your mouth the Lord Jesus.

My conclusion is this: If one will call upon the name of the Lord, and confess His diety – under threat of torture and/or death – one will be saved. Hence taking up the cross. Your comments are welcome.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Floating Axe permalink
    August 24, 2006 4:41 pm

    i’d say you are accurate this is not unlike the sayings of Jesus- “You have heard it said…” What He is saying is to be a christian all you have to do is confess and believe this is the free gift of salvation but if you want me to MAKE you a disciple, not form not coax not spoon feed, MAKE a disciple you have to die, it will cost you everything so what kind of follower are you? Christian/Disciple

  2. Lex permalink
    August 25, 2006 12:49 pm

    That’s an excellent distinction.

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