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Author Topic: IS "FAITH" THE "GIFT" OF GOD?  (Read 1511 times)
Brother Love
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« on: July 21, 2004, 05:09:36 AM »

IS "FAITH" THE "GIFT" OF GOD?

By Russell S. Miller

Is "faith" in Ephesians 2:8,9 the "gift" of God?

Some have taught that the Greek word here, for "gift", suggests that faith is the gift of God. Can this thinking really be justified in the light of what the Apostle Paul says of salvation in Romans 6:23? The answer is an emphatic "NO".

Meditate upon this for a moment: Who created us? The Scriptures reply with a resounding: "GOD". God, "who created all things by Jesus Christ" (Eph.3:9), created us in His own "image" and "likeness" (Gen.1:26). And this great and mighty Creator, who "formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul" (Gen.2:7), put within this man, whom He had created, the ability to "seek the Lord" (Acts 17:23-27). This quotation from Acts is no less than the words of "the Apostle of the Gentiles" (Rom.11:13). Is there not within every one of us that vacuum that can only be filled with Christ? Yet the Apostle to the Nations declares:

"As it is written, There is none righteous, no not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no not one" (Rom.3:10-12).

The Bible does not contradict itself here. God has built within every man, woman and child upon creation that ability within him to believe.
He can discern the sky; he can choose whatever he pleases; he can believe a lie. If man is responsible before God, and he most assuredly is, then he may choose to "receive" the gift of God:

"For the wages of sin is death; BUT THE GIFT OF GOD IS ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD" (Rom.6:23).


It is not that he is unable to believe the gospel, as we have
demonstrated, rather it is a matter of his will. Consequently, man will stand to give an account to his Creator, for his faith his ability to believeis indirectly given of God in creation. Man,
however, is a rebel from his birth, and intentionally disobedient. In the words of John 3:18, "...he that BELIEVETH NOT IS CONDEMNED ALREADY, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God". This is why his sinfulness is defined in terms of "total depravity".

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« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2004, 10:10:22 AM »

Quote
Is "faith" in Ephesians 2:8,9 the "gift" of God?
Some have taught that the Greek word here, for "gift", suggests that faith is the gift of God. Can this thinking really be justified in the light of what the Apostle Paul says of salvation in Romans 6:23? The answer is an emphatic "NO".

On the contrary, the answer is an emphatic "YES". It is "A" gift of God. Meditate on this for a minute.

Eph 2:8   For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:
Eph 2:9   Not of works, lest any man should boast.

You are saved by grace (a gift, charis) through faith (pistis): and that (refers to the preceding verb, faith) doesn't come from yourself, it too (also, referring to the faith) is a gift of God.

Notice that in  Rom 12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think [of himself] more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Rom 12:6   Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, [let us prophesy] according to the proportion of faith

Faith, in and of itself, is a gift from God. He deals it out to every man, and to every man is dealt an adequate portion (or proportion) of faith to allow that individual the ability to clearly choose salvation.  Salvation itself is the greatest of the gifts, but the Eph. passage clearly shows that faith is also a gift. This is further emphasized by the following verse "not of works...", to make absolutely clear that even the expression of faith (belief) that results in the choice of righteousness through Jesus Christ and His atonement is NOT something that can be generated or willed by man.

Further, there are other passages to indicate that MANY gifts are given to man (by God), such as:
Eph 4:8   Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.

among which some of them are:
Eph 4:11   And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

And again in 1 Cor. 12.

The primary gift of God to man is salvation through Jesus Christ, in that we fully agree.....but to state unequivocally that the faith that produces the actuality of salvation is a man generated choice is to fly in the face of God's Word, and is NOT a gift is, at best, an improperly divided Word, and at worst is sheer arrogance and self-righteousness.
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Brother Love
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2004, 04:01:00 AM »

FAITH AND HEARING

By Cornelius R. Stam

"Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God" (Rom. 10:17).

This important passage of Scripture is, sad to say, little
understood. Many people think of faith in the abstract, as
though it had some mysterious power in itself. They speak
of faith, but what do they mean? Faith in what? or in
whom? Surely it is not possible just to have faith, without
something or someone to have faith in.


Faith is not wishing hard, or feeling confident. It is not
optimism or presumption or imagination. Faith must have
a basis, a foundation. Thus the Christians faith is founded
on "the Word of God" -- on what God has said in the Bible.
The above passage explains: "Faith cometh by hearing."
Isnt that simple? Isnt it true? Some have said that "seeing
is believing," but a moments reflection will reveal that,
like the phrase: "Im from Missouri," this saying is an ex-
pression of unbelief. When we have seen a thing we need
no longer believe it; it has been demonstrated to us. But
when we hear [or read] a matter reported, we may either
believe or doubt it. "Faith cometh by hearing." And like-
wise hearing comes through what has been said. We be-
lieve, or doubt, what we hear and we hear what has been
said. The Christians faith, then, comes by hearing (God)
and hearing by the Word of God. All true Christian faith is
founded on the Word of God.


Actually the word "hearing," in Rom. 10:17, however, has
the idea of heeding -- paying attention, listening eagerly.
This is why Gal. 3:5 speaks of "the hearing of faith." And
thus Eph. 1:13, referring to Christ, says: "In whom ye also
trusted, having heard the Word of truth, the gospel of your
salvation." Thus, too, we read in John 5:24 the words of the
Lord Jesus:

"HE THAT HEARETH MY WORD, AND BELIEVETH ON HIM THAT
SENT ME, HATH EVERLASTING LIFE, AND SHALL NOT COME INTO JUDGMENT, BUT IS PASSED FROM DEATH UNTO LIFE."

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« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2004, 03:17:53 AM »

No faith is the gift WE GIVE to God.
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Brother Love
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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2004, 06:55:10 PM »

No faith is the gift WE GIVE to God.

Thanks grace72  Smiley

Your friend and brother

Brother Love Smiley


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« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2004, 07:05:34 PM »

Quote
Thus the Christians faith is founded
on "the Word of God" -- on what God has said in the Bible.

...I'd call that a gift of God.

Quote
Faith is not wishing hard, or feeling confident. It is not
optimism or presumption or imagination. Faith must have
a basis, a foundation. Thus the Christians faith is founded
on "the Word of God" -- on what God has said in the Bible.
The above passage explains: "Faith cometh by hearing."
Isnt that simple? Isnt it true? Some have said that "seeing
is believing," but a moments reflection will reveal that,
like the phrase: "Im from Missouri," this saying is an ex-
pression of unbelief. When we have seen a thing we need
no longer believe it; it has been demonstrated to us. But
when we hear [or read] a matter reported, we may either
believe or doubt it. "Faith cometh by hearing." And like-
wise hearing comes through what has been said. We be-
lieve, or doubt, what we hear and we hear what has been
said. The Christians faith, then, comes by hearing (God)
and hearing by the Word of God. All true Christian faith is
founded on the Word of God.

Confusing.

Heb 11:1  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Heb 12:2  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

2Pe 1:1  Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Saviour Jesus Christ:
2Pe 1:5  And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;

Jud 1:3  Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.


Quote
No faith is the gift WE GIVE to God.

Praise, worship, adoration, love, and our lives in His service is the gift we give to God. Faith comes from Him, we add to it, and that is also a gift we give Him.



Gracey

Luk 17:5  And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.
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Brother Love
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« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2004, 05:20:27 AM »

"As it is written, There is none righteous, no not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no not one" (Rom.3:10-12).

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« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2004, 05:31:18 AM »

"As it is written, There is none righteous, no not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no not one" (Rom.3:10-12).

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yadda ~ whatever.........

No one is Perfect at all, only God is Perfect!  Grin

Blessings,  \o/
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Gracey
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« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2004, 05:31:50 AM »

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"As it is written, There is none righteous, no not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no not one" (Rom.3:10-12).


Nice scripture.
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Brother Love
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« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2004, 04:13:32 AM »

Quote
"As it is written, There is none righteous, no not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no not one" (Rom.3:10-12).


Nice scripture.

Nice Huh

Brother Love Smiley

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Gracey
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« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2004, 03:25:41 PM »

Yeah, nice....I like all the scriptures.
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