The Trinitarian Nature of Effectual Calling
The doctrine of effectual calling is a clear expression how the three Persons of the Trinity work in harmony to bring about the redemption of ill-deserving sinners, like us. The Father elects people for salvation, the Son redeems them through His death and resurrection, and the Holy Spirit calls them to faith.
The Father elects people for salvation, choosing them for salvation before the foundation of the world. This is the doctrine of election, which teaches that God has chosen certain individuals for salvation, not based on anything they have done or will do, but simply because of His grace and mercy.
The Son redeems a people for Himself through His death and resurrection. He takes the punishment that we deserve for our sin and offers us forgiveness and the gift of eternal life. This redemption is only possible because of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Finally, because of the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit calls people to faith in Him. This is what is referred to as effectual calling. The Holy Spirit convicts people of their sin, reveals the righteousness of Jesus Christ, regenerates them, and enables them to respond to the gospel message and put their faith in Jesus Christ.
Why is Effectual Calling and Regeneration necessary? Isn't the outward call of the gospel enough?
Effectual Calling and Regeneration are necessary because all people are affected by sin and are unwilling to choose God or turn to Him of their own accord. 1 Corinthians 2:14 states: "The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned."
This means that, apart from the work of the Holy Spirit, people are unwilling to understand or receive the things of God because the truths of the Bible are either foolishness or a stumbling block to them. They are unwilling to choose Him or respond to His summons to salvation because, being of the flesh, they are under the influence/captivity of sin and are resistant or hostile to spiritual truths.
In light of this verse, total depravity means that all people are affected by sin and are unable to choose God or turn to Him of their own accord. They are not morally capable of responding to the gospel message and receiving salvation without the work of the Holy Spirit. This is why effectual calling, which is the work of the Holy Spirit, is necessary for salvation. The Holy Spirit enables the individual to understand and respond to the things of God, leading them to faith in Jesus Christ.
In summary, the Trinity works in harmony to bring about redemption. The Father elects people for salvation, the Son redeems them through His death and resurrection, and the Holy Spirit calls them to faith. Each person of the Trinity plays a unique and important role in the process of salvation, and all three work together to bring sinners to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
The Biblical Distinction Between the Outward and Inward Call
1 Corinthians 1:23-24 is a passage that displays both the outward and inward call of the Holy Spirit. It says, "But we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God."
In this passage, Paul is referring to the outward call of the gospel, which is proclaimed to all people, both Jews and Greeks. The message of Christ crucified is a stumbling block to some and foolishness to others, but to those who are called, it is the power of God and the wisdom of God. This outward call is the general invitation of the gospel, which is extended to all people without distinction.
However, the passage also implies the inward call of the Holy Spirit. The term "called" in this passage refers to those who have responded to the outward call and have been saved by the grace of God. The inward call of the Holy Spirit is not based on anything the person has done or will do, but solely on the sovereign grace of God. It is an irresistible work of the Holy Spirit, who convicts the individual of their sin, reveals the righteousness of Jesus Christ, and enables them to respond to the gospel message and put their faith in Jesus Christ.
In summary, 1 Corinthians 1:23-24 displays both the outward and inward call of the Holy Spirit. The outward call is the general invitation of the gospel to all people, while the inward call is the specific, personal summons to salvation that is the infallible result of God's sovereign grace.
John 6:63-65 is an example of the Trinity working in Harmony to bring about redemption.
"It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life...And this is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father."
These verses demonstrate the involvement of the Trinity in salvation. In John 6:63, Jesus attributes the work of quickening to the Holy Spirit. This speaks to the role of the Holy Spirit in regeneration, which is the work of renewing the heart and making the person spiritually alive. This work of the Holy Spirit is essential for the individual to respond to the gospel and put their faith in Jesus Christ.
In John 6:65, Jesus speaks of the role of the Father in granting salvation. The Father is the one who elects individuals for salvation in Christ, and it is through his sovereignty that salvation is made possible. The Father works in harmony with the Holy Spirit to bring about regeneration and enable the individual to respond to the gospel message.
In summary, John 6:63 and 65 demonstrate the Trinitarian nature of salvation. The Holy Spirit gives life, the Father grants salvation, and Jesus is the Savior. All three persons of the Trinity are involved in bringing about the redemption of the individual.
What are some key truths derived from the biblical doctrine of effectual calling?
Effectual calling is an act of God's sovereign grace, where He irresistibly and undeservedly draws an individual to salvation.
Effectual calling is in harmony with God's election, as He chooses those who will be saved before the foundation of the world.
Effectual calling is a supernatural work of the Holy Spirit, who convicts the individual of sin, righteousness, and judgment.
Effectual calling results in a radical transformation of the heart, mind, and will of the individual.
Effectual calling infallibly leads to faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
Effectual calling produces fruit in the life of the individual, including obedience to God's will and good works.
Effectual calling is irreversible and will result in the individual's ultimate perseverance in the faith and ultimate glorification in heaven.