VERSE 13:  “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Literally: “For everyone, whosoever may call on {the} name of the Lord will be saved.”–This sentiment is found substantially in Joe 2:32, And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered.”

“call upon the Name of the Lord”
Literally:  “call upon the name of {the} Lord”–This is expressly applied to the times of the Gospel by Peter, in Acts 2:21. To call on the name of the Lord is the same as to call on the Lord Himself.

                        NAME:  (Grk.–onoma)–Meaning, “title; person; authority; power.”

The word "name" is often used in this manner. “The name of the Lord is a strong tower,” etc., (Prov 18:10); “The name of the God of Jacob defend thee," (Psa. 20:1). That is, God Himself is a strong tower, etc. Paul quotes from a prophecy relating to the times of the Gospel. See the context, (Joel 2:28-31). To “call upon the name of the Lord” implies,

1.      That the true God (Jehovah, in the Hebrew quotation) shall be approached in worship, and,
2.      That there shall be something more than saying, “Lord, Lord,” etc. (Matt. 7:21,22). The language, wherever used, implies coming to the Lord and calling on Him in His appointed way, (compare Acts 22:16; 2:21; Gen. 12:8). This promise of Joel (Joel 2:32), since it says “whosoever,” is not limited to the Jewish race.

        SHALL BE SAVED: (Grk.–sōthēsetai)–Shall have his guilt pardoned, his heart  purified; and if he abides in the faith, rooted and grounded in Him, showing forth the virtues of Him Who was called him out of darkness into His marvelous light, he shall be saved with         all the power of an eternal life.

This is proper and indispensable, because:
1.         We have sinned against God, (3:23) and it is right that we should confess it.
2.      He only can pardon us, and it is fit, that if we obtain pardon, we should ask it of God.
3.      To call upon Him is to acknowledge Him as our Sovereign, our Father, and our Friend; and it is right that we render Him our homage
It is implied in this, that we call upon Him with a humble sense of our sinfulness and our need of pardon, and with a willingness to receive eternal life as it is offered us in the Gospel. If this be done, this passage teaches us that all may be saved who will do it. He will cast none away who come in this manner. The invitation and the assurance extend to all nations, and to men of all time.

Believing in Christ, (10:11), and calling upon God, (10:12-14), are in effect the same thing; as calling upon God necessarily connects and supposes faith in him: and he who duly believes in Christ has such a sense of his dependence upon Divine grace, that he looks unto God and trusts in His power and goodness alone for happiness: which is the true religion of the Gospel.

William Newell, in his Romans commentary has some interesting things to say about this Joel 2:32 passage here quoted by Paul.
1.      Salvation is promised–“shall be saved.”
2.      It is a be saved, not a save yourself Salvation
3.      It is the Lord who is to do it–“call upon the Lord.”
4.      He does is for those who call upon His name.
5.      He does it for the ‘whosoevers:, for anybody.

The Jew not only relied on his Law-keeping, instead of simple faith to save him, but also denied that Paul and the other apostles had any right to proclaim salvation by such a simple message; and a message that even left out the Law and Judaism.

“How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed?  And how shall they be-lieve in Him of whom they have not heard?  And how shall they hear without a preacher?”      

“How then shall they call on Him”
Literally: “How then may they call on {One}?”–Paul here refers to an objection which might be given to his argument. His doctrine was that faith in Christ was essential to justification and salvation; and that this was needful for all; and that without this, man must perish.

            The objection was, that they could not call on Him in whom they had not believed; that they could not believe in Him of whom they had not heard; and that this was arranged by God Himself; so that a large part of the world was destitute of the Gospel and in fact did not believe (vv.16-17).  The first part of the objection is that they could “not call on Him in whom they had not believed.”  That is, how could they call on one in whose existence, ability, and willingness to help they did not believe?
            The objection is that i
n order to our calling on one for help, we must be satisfied that there is such an One, and that He is able to aid us. This remark is just, and every man feels it. But the point of the objection is that sufficient evidence of the Divine mission and claims of Jesus Christ had not been given to authorize the doctrine that eternal salvation depended on in Him, or that it would be right to suspend the eternal happiness of Jew and Gentile on this.  Professing to believe in Christ, without earnest, importunate prayer for salvation, can save no man.

“in  whom they have not believed?”–The passages quoted from the prophets show that the Gentiles also were to have the opportunity of salvation.  Hence the duty of preaching to them is now shown. They could not “call upon the Lord” without faith (see v.13).  But there could be no faith in the Lord unless they had heard of Him, since knowledge is an element of faith.  But they could not hear the Gospel story until it was preached to them. Hence, preaching to the Gentiles was essential to carry out the purposes of God.

Since Paul had laid so much stress on believing in order to salvation, and as this doctrine, without a further explanation might be misunderstood, but it was necessary to show how this faith was produced. and therefore he lays the whole doctrine down in a beautifully graduated order.
1.     This must be preached, that is, proclaimed in the world for the obedience of faith.
2.     None can effectually preach this unless he has a Divine mission; for how shall they preach except they be SENT, (v. 15). The matter must come from God; and the person mho proclaims it must have both authority and unction from on high.
3.      This Divinely-commissioned person must be heard: it is the duty of all, to whom this message of salvation is sent, to hear it with the deepest reverence and attention.
4.      What is heard must be credited; for they who do not believe the Gospel as the record which God has given of His Son cannot be saved.
5.      Those who believe must invoke God by Christ, which they cannot do unless they believe in Him; and in this way alone they are to expect salvation.

Professing to believe in Christ, without earnest, importunate prayer for salvation, can save no one. All these things Paul lays down as essentially necessary; and they all follow from his grand proposition, When, therefore, there is:
            a.       A proper MESSAGE;
            b.       A proper MESSENGER;
            c.       The message PREACHED, proclaimed, or properly delivered by him;
            d.       The proclamation properly HEARD and attentively considered by the people;
            e.        The message which they have heard, conscientiously BELIEVED;
            f.        The
Name of the Lord Jesus, by Whom alone this salvation is provided, most fervently INVOKED; then,
Salvation or redemption from sin and misery, and the enjoyment of peace and happiness, will be the result of such calling, believing, hearing, preaching, sending, and message sent:—and thus the Doctrine of Salvation ov Grace through Faith is guarded from abuse.

“And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard?”
Literally: “And how may they believe {One} of whom they have not heard?”  There can be no salvation without the Gospel: a dispensation of mercy and grace from God alone, here called, (v. 15), the Gospel of Peace.   That is, glad tidings of good things. What is heard must be credited; for they who do not believe the Gospel as the record which God has given of His Son cannot be saved.

“And how shall they hear without a preacher?”
Literally: “And how may they hear without preaching?”--The Gospel must be preached;   proclaimed in the world for the obedience of faith. The matter must come from God; and the person who proclaims it must have both the authority and an unction from on High.

                 HEAR:  (Grk.--akoē)–Meaning, “hearing, listening.”

Paul makes it clear that there must be messengers of the Gospel who have credentials from God,  and this Divinely-commissioned person must be heard.  It is the duty of all, to whom this message of salvation is sent to hear it with the deepest reverence and attention.

VERSE 15:|
“And how shall they preach, except they be sent?  As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the Gospel of Peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!’”

            “how shall they preach”
            Literally: “And how may they preach?”In what way shall there be preachers, unless they are commissioned by God?

            HOW:  (Grk.–pōs)-The word “how” does not refer to the manner of preaching, but to the fact that there would be no preachers  at all unless they were sent forth.

          PREACH:  (Grk.–kērussō)–A Greek verb meaning, “to proclaim,” or “to be a herald.”  Simply put, to preach means, “to proclaim in a public manner,” as a crier does. In   the N.T. Scriptures it means, “to proclaim the gospel to men.”

            “except they be sent”
            Literally: “If they are not sent?”– Except the preachers are divinely commissioned, and sent forth by God.

            This was an admitted doctrine among the Jews, that a proclamation of a Divine message must be made by one who was commissioned by God for that purpose, (Jer. 23:21; 1:7; 14:14-15; 7:25). None can effectually preach this unless he have a Divine mission
            He who sends a message to men can alone designate the proper persons to bear it. The point of the objection, therefore, was this:  Men could not believe unless the message was sent to them; yet God had not actually sent it to all men: it could not therefore be just, to make eternal life depend on so impracticable a thing as faith, since men had not the means of believing.

“as it is written”
Literally:  “Even as it has been written.”–In Isa 52:7. Another prophecy that has its highest fulfillment under the gospel dispensation. This message was to the Gentiles blessed tidings, and the passage quoted from Isaiah shows, how those would rejoice who believed the glad news (see Acts 13:38).

           WRITTEN: (Grk.–gegraptai)—Past perfect case of the Greek verb (graphō), which means,, “to write, record, compose,  cover with writing.”

“how beautiful are the feet”
Literally: “How beautiful the feet.”–The reason why this passage is introduced here is that it confirms what had just been advanced in the objection–the importance and necessity of ther being messengers of salvation. They are regarded as objects peculiarly attractive; their necessity is fully recognized; and a distinguished rank is given to them in the oracles of God.

          BEAUTIFUL: (Grk.–hōraioi)–attractive; lovely. From (Grk.–hōra)the time of full bloom” or “development.”  Hence the idea of the word includes both blooming maturity and vigor.  Appropriate here to the swift, vigorous feet.

This is taken from the Hebrew, with a slight variation. The image in Isaiah is that of a herald seen at first leaping or running on a distant hill, when he first comes in sight, with tidings of joy from a field of battle, or from a distant land. Thus, the appearance of such a man to those who were in captivity, would be an image full of gladness and joy.

FEET:  (Grk.–podes)—Their very footsteps; their coming; (see  Isa 52:7).

Picture of a herald running on the distant hills; and it supposes a picture too remote to observe distinctly the feet, whether attractive or not. The meaning of it is clearly this: “How beautiful is the coming or the running of such a herald.” The feet are emblematic of his coming. Their rapid motion would be seen; and their rapidity would be beautiful from the desire to hear the message which he brought. The whole meaning of the passage then, as applied to ministers of the Gospel, is, that their coming is an attractive object, regarded with deep interest, and productive of joy–an honored and a delightful employment.

“that preach the Gospel of Peace”
Literally: “Those proclaiming the Gospel of Peace.”–That proclaim the good news of peace; or bring the glad message of peace. The whole chapter of Isaiah from which this is taken, and the three that follow, are so richly Messianic, that there can be no doubt "the glad tidings" there spoken of announce a more glorious release than of Judah from the Babylon captivity, and the very feet of its preachers are called “beautiful for the sake of their message.

“and bring glad tidings of good things”
Literally: “Of those preaching the gospel of good things.”–Peace here is put for good of any kind; and as Paul uses it, for the news of reconciliation with God by the Gospel.

Peace, at the end of the conflicts, distresses, and woes of war, is an image of all blessings. Thus it is put to denote the blessings when a sinner ceases to be the enemy of God, obtains pardon, and is admitted to the joys of those who are His children and friends. The coming of those messengers who proclaim it is joyful to the world. It fills the bosom of the anxious sinner with peace; and they and their message will be regarded with deep interest, as sent by God, and producing joy in an agitated bosom, and peace to the world. This is an illustration of the proper feeling with which we should regard the ministers of Christianity. This passage in Isaiah is referred by the Jews themselves to the times of the Gospel.

“But they have not all obeyed the Gospel.  For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report”

            “But they have not all obeyed the Gospel.”
            Literally: “But not all obeyed the gospel.”– They heard, but did not heed.

            It’s as if he had said, “It must be admitted that all have not obeyed the gospel. So far as the objection of the Jew arises from that fact, and so far as that fact can bear on the case, it is to be conceded that all have not yielded obedience to the Gospel. For this was clearly declared even by the prophet.” (Comp. Acts 28:24; Heb. 4:1-16).
            Although the Gospel had been preached extensively among Jews and Gentiles, yet only a comparatively few had embraced it, especially among the Jews. This also had been foretold in the O.T. (Isa 53:1). Yet some, as foretold, when they heard the Gospel, did believe and were saved.

            NOT ALL: (Grk.–ou pantes)–A better rendering of this might read, “only a very few.”  Very few Israelites had given credence to the good news of Salvation by Faith.

            All had not yet heard it, and hence could not obey it. To those who receive the Gospel it is glad tidings. These fulfill the prediction of the prophets. But many are in unbelief, and hence do not obey the Gospel. (Note that the Gospel is to be obeyed. This should not surprise us, for Isaiah predicted thissome eight centuries before, when he said (Isa 53:1), “Lord, who hath believed our report?”
           This seems to be the objection of a Jew; as if he had said: “A Divine mission would be attended with success; whereas there are numbers who pay no attention to the glad tidings you preach.”  To this Paul answers, that the Spirit of God, by Isaiah, Isa. 53:1, foretold it would be so, even in the case of the Jews themselves, where he said, “Lord, who hath believed our report?”  For although God brings the Message of Salvation to men, He does not force them to embrace it. It is proposed to their understanding and conscience; but it does not become the means of salvation unless it be affectionately credited.

            OBEYED: (Grk.–hypēkousan)-Obeyed” is the result of having listened. Perhaps “hearkened” or “heeded” might be a better rendering than “obeyed.”

“who hath believed our report?”
Literally: “Who has believed our report?”–That is, Isaiah complains that his declarations respecting the Messiah had been rejected by his countrymen.

The f expression, “Who hath believed?” is a mode of saying emphatically that few or none had done so. The great mass of his countrymen had rejected it. This was an example to the purpose of Paul. In the time of Isaiah this fact existed; and it was not a new thing that it existed in the time of the gospel.

          REPORT:  (Grk.–akoēi)-Literally:  “hearing.” Our message; or that which is delivered to be heard and believed. It originally means the doctrine which Isaiah delivered about the Messiah; and implies that the same thing would occur when the Messiah should actually come.

In the 53rd chapter Isaiah proceeds to give the reasons why the report would not be credited, and why the Messiah would be rejected. It would be because he was a root out of a dry ground; because He was a Man of Sorrows, etc. And this actually took place. Because He did not come with splendor and pomp, as a temporal prince, He was rejected, and put to death.  On substantially the same grounds Christ is even still being rejected by thousands. Perhaps the force of this verse may be best seen by including it in a parenthesis,

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”

“faith cometh by hearing”
Literally: “Faith {is} of hearing.”–Even by this passage it seems that a message was necessary, that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Divine message.

         Faith does not come from psychology, or philosophy, or from some political rostrum.  Hence the need of preaching, preaching the Word of God. If God, by a miracle wrought faith in the heart, He could dispense with the preacher. But the divine arrangement is that faith should result from hearing the Word of God preached.  For an example of the gospel plan, (see Acts 18:8).–“And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord, with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing, believed, and were baptized.”
Preaching the Gospel is the ordinary means of salvation:  (I Cor. 1:21: “For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.  Faith in Christ is the result of hearing the Word, that is, the Doctrine of God being preached. Preaching, if heard attentively,  will produce faith; and if they believe the report, the arm of the Lord will be revealed in their salvation.


          BY HEARING:  (Grk.–ex akoēs)–The same word as “report” in the previous verse, and in the same sense: “that which is heard.”

“and hearing by the Word of God.”
Literally: “And hearing through {the} Word of God.”–This is another confirmation of the truth that faith supposes the hearing of the Word, and this a commission to preach it.

 And the report, or the message, is by the Word of God; that is, the message is sent by the command of God. It is His Word, sent by His direction, and therefore, if withheld by Him, those who did not believe could not be blamed. The argument of the objector is, that God could not justly condemn men for not believing the Gospel.

           WORD OF GOD:  (Grk.–rēmatos Theou)–The better texts read, “of Christ.”   Possibly not meaning the Gospel but Christ’s Word of Command, or commission to His preachers.  Paul seems to be taking up his, “except they be sent” theme of v. 15., and emphasizing the authority of the message.  Belief comes through the message, and the message through the command of Christ.


           The Jews did believe in God, and he surely had heard of Him.  Preachers had proclaimed the Gospel to them, and these preachers had been sent from God.  But who had authorized these preachers to “get off the reservation” and take this Gospel to the Gentiles?  The Jews had also been accustomed to thinking of themselves as the chosen of God, and the one to whom the testimony of God had been given.
            Paul answers this question of the
Jews by pointing out that Israel had had all these privileged but had not responded to the preaching.  And he points out that the O.T. prophet Isaiah had even asked, “Lord, who hath believed our report,” indicating that many who had heard the message would refuse to accept the message.