Introduction: There is no doubt that God calls men and women today (as we shall see). The question and issue is, how does God call or draw man for the purpose of his salvation?
I. God calls men by his gospel
A. There are many notions and teachings relative to how God calls.
a. Some believe God's call is direct and irresistible, effected through the supernatural working of the Holy Spirit (see later).
B. Paul leaves no doubt as to how God calls: "Whereunto he called you by our gospel," he writes to the Christians at Thessalonica (2 Thes. 2: 14).
a. We read of these people initially being saved in Acts 17. Paul preached the gospel and some of them believed (Acts 17: 1-4).
II. To what men are called
A. Christians are called to freedom (Gal. 5: 13, Jn. 8: 31).
a. Not freedom of any law, but freedom of an onerous law that could not save (law of Moses, Gal. 3).
B. The gospel calls man out of darkness and into God's marvelous light (I Pet. 2: 9).
C. Peter taught man is called to eternal glory and Paul said the calling is unto the kingdom (I Pet. 5: 10; I Thes. 2: 12).
D. Man is even called to suffering (I Pet. 2: 21).
III. Man has the free moral agency to reject God's calling
A. The scriptures contain exhortations regarding the calling.
a. God's people are to walk worthy of the calling of God and make the calling sure (Eph. 4: 1-3; 2 Pet. 1: 5-10).
b. If we reject this divine invitation, we reject the Father, Christ, and the Holy Sprit (2 Tim. 1: 9; I Cor. 9: 12; Matt. 11: 28; Acts 7: 51, 52).
c. Moreover, there is no escape for those who reject God's calling (Heb. 2: 1-3).
Conclusion: "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him It is written in the prophets, and they shall all be taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me" (Jn. 6: 44,45). Jesus knocks, but man must open (Rev. 3: 20).