As this article explains, God calling is the primary language in the NT for God’s gospel invitation to the world to come under the kingship of his Messiah.
This page is a listing of verses from the NT epistles that use the called language, omitting those that refer to other labelling (such as “as long as it’s called today” in Hebrews 3:13). This survey is based on the NIV.
Observe who is doing the calling.
Rom 1 6 And you also are among those Gentiles who are called to belong to Jesus Christ. 7 To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be his holy people: Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Rom 4 17 As it is written: “I have made you a father of many nations.” He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed — the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.
Rom 8 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
Rom 9 24 even us, whom he also called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles?
1 Cor 1 9 God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 Cor 1 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. … 26 Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth.
1 Cor 7 21 Were you a slave when you were called? Don’t let it trouble you—although if you can gain your freedom, do so. 22 For the one who was a slave when called to faith in the Lord is the Lord’s freed person; similarly, the one who was free when called is Christ’s slave.
Gal 1 6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel …
Gal 1 15 But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased …
Gal 5 8 That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you.
Eph 1 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people …
Eph 4 1 As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. … 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called.
1 Thes 2 12 … urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory.
1 Thes 5 24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
2 Thes 1 11 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith.
2 Thes 2 14 He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Tim 6 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.
2 Tim 1 9 He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time,
Heb 3 1 Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledge as our apostle and high priest.
Heb 9 15 For this reason Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance — now that he has died as a ransom to set them free from the sins committed under the first covenant.
1 Pet 1 15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do.
1 Pet 5 10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
2 Pet 1 3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.
2 Pet 1 10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble,
Jude 1 Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James, To those who have been called, who are loved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ …
- In Romans 1:5, the NIV has the apostles issuing the call, but that’s an interpolation: there is no called in Greek.
- The NT can also speak of people calling on the name of the Lord (e.g. Acts 2:21 and Romans 10:12-13, quoting Joel 2:32). Surveying this phrase in the Bible’s narrative provides a marvellous background, but Romans 10 makes it clear that our call on him comes in response to his call. Paul quotes from a text dealing with God’s ubiquitous natural revelation (Psalm 19:4) to say that the same is true of God’s gospel call: it goes out to all the earth, … to the ends of the world (10:18).