For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.
~ Ephesians 2:8
There are many scriptures in the Bible on faith, and many believe that it is our faith that saves us. We need to view faith in a different way. Is faith something we develop in ourselves, or is faith something given to us—something we obtain from an outside source?
When things are going our way and we have a good feeling about life, our faith may be full. There are other times that everything seems out of control. In our view God is far away because He is definitely not answering our pleas as we think He should. Our doubt and fear grows to the point of crowding or squelching our faith. John 5:1-15 tells of a lame man who had doubts and fear. His whole life was centered around getting into the pool of healing waters. That is where his faith lay. He had no faith in Jesus, yet Jesus rendered His healing grace. This man’s faith had no effect on God’s grace.
If we are truthful, we know that “our” faith is lacking, just like the disciples when there were five thousand hungry people. God fed them all because of His miraculous grace. You see He was not only filling their stomachs with bread and fish, He was filling their hearts with faith. If we rely on our faith, which is so weak as to have never performed a miracle or to walk on water, we know that trusting in what we do is not enough. Jesus fed the five thousand even though the disciples’ faith was absent.
Do we really grasp the meaning of Ephesians 2:8? It states, “This is not your own doing,” yet we still claim it as a faith we internally produce because of outside persuasion. Unfortunately, outside influences can cause a paradigm shift, thereby affecting our internal faith. The mere fact of not knowing something leaves us void of faith. Even though the disciples were told that Jesus would rise in three days, they did not know or understand. How could they have faith in what they did not know? Yet of all the miracles of God, this was the one that would alter the past, the present, and the future, forever. This was the pivotal point of the most majestic grace given. This one act ruptured the hard heart of all mankind to insert the faith that God had created. God’s grace is never limited by our faith.
From whence does our faith come? By our faith can we grow an arm or a leg or a brain? No! Faith is given to us by His creation. Is good character something we create in ourselves, or something He builds inside us? How would we know sorrow, hope, anger, forgiveness, life, joy, peace, or love had He not created these and instilled them in us? We have nothing, no thought processes, no feelings, no faith, absolutely nothing if it were not given to us from above.
We are lacking and sometimes absent of faith, but our God is not. He will disseminate His faith like seeds in the soil of those who are willing to hear, to believe in Him; then we can rest in His faith to grow and propagate to accomplish His purpose in us. The bottom line is, it is not about us, but about Him. Ephesians 2:8 says clearly—it is a gift, both grace and faith. God graced us with faith.
God, It’s through the faith you have given me that I have been saved by Your grace. Thank You for Your gift, Amen.
~ Jenny Calvert