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External Call

For many are called, but few are chosen.

- Matthew 22:14

Internal Call

Moreover whom He did predestinate, them He also called: and whom He called, thern He also justified: and whom He justified, them He also glorified.

- Romans 8:30


  • Effectual - Producing the desired effect or result (in this case salvation-producing)
  • The wonderful, electing, gracious love of the Triune God shines forth in His willingness to call sinners to repentance and salvation. This plan was the eternal, electing thought of God the Father; it was bought in time by the redemptive work of God the Son; and it is wrought (worked or applied) by God the Holy Spirit.

    Scripture speaks of the gracious calling work of the Holy Spirit as two different and distinct callings - as an external and an internal calling. What is meant by these two terms?

    God's external (outward or general) call is the presentation and invitation of God's gospel of salvation to all sinners who are brought in contact with His Word. While the external call is necessary (except in exceptional circumstances), it is not sufficient for salvation. Fallen, sinful man, however, rejects the call and invitation of the gospel.

    Therefore, God's internal (inward or effectual) call is necessary. This call is the Holy Spirit's irresistible, saving application of the gospel to the hearts of His children. It is inseparably united to the Spirit's regenerating work in the soul. God's external and internal callings are pictured in the diagram below:

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