5/10 Acts 2:21

21 "'And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.'"

A crowd had surrounded the disciples to see the manifestation of God in wind and fire. They were hearing the disciples speak in the many different languages of those Jews who had gathered from around the known world for the feast of Pentecost. Peter's Holy Spirit-inspired sermon, explaining what was taking place, included a quotation from the prophet Joel (Joel 2:28-32). Joel had predicted a day when the Spirit of God would be poured out on men and women. The quotation ended with our verse for today. Three thousand Jews repented of their sins and were baptized (Acts 2:41). This most likely took place on the southern steps of the temple as people were required to gather at 9 a.m. as part of the Pentecost celebration. If you visit Jerusalem today, you can still see those steps and the baptismal pools (mikvas).

The Apostle Paul also quoted this verse in his letter to the Romans (Romans 10:13). While Peter explained the need to repent and be baptized (Acts 2:38), salvation begins when one calls out to the Lord. It does not matter in which language or culture we are raised. It is a matter of the heart crying out to the Creator to know the truth and to become right with God.

Just before the specific passage for today that Peter quotes from, the prophet Joel had prophesied about people seeing dreams and visions as the Holy Spirit speaks to them (Joel 2:17). Today in the Muslim world and other countries closed to the gospel, one can meet people who have cried out to know the truth and have seen this promise fulfilled in their life. Their dreams and visions of Jesus have led them to Christ as their Savior. It is especially prevalent among the descendants of Abraham. I have visited the Middle East and heard the testimony of one prominent Jew and a number of former Muslims who have come to Christ in this way. The Scripture is being fulfilled in an observable way and increasingly so as the return of Christ draws near.

Prayer: We thank You, O Lord, that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved! Use us as instruments, empowered by Your Holy Spirit, to draw others to You.