By Grace You Have Been Saved Through Faith?
Ephesians 2:8-9 says, "It is by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God, not a result of works so that no one may boast." All three of those things mentioned there -- grace, salvation, and faith -- are a gift from God.
Someone might argue, "Now hang on, I have faith! And I've been given the grace of God and received salvation because I believe, right?"
Sure, absolutely. But where does belief come from? Can you create something from nothing? Did you concentrate and manifest your faith? "Nngg BAM! I believe!" Of course not. Faith comes from hearing the word of Christ.
John 6:29, "This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent." Ephesians 1:19 talks about the "immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might."
Hebrews 12:2 says that Jesus is the founder of our faith -- it came from him -- and he is the perfector of our faith -- he sustains us and grows us in it as well. According to Romans 12:3, God apportions the measure of faith each person has.
Even repentance is a gift from God. In Acts 5:31 and 11:18, God gives repentance that leads to life. And in 2 Timothy 2:25, it is God who grants repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth.
Just as God created all things from nothing by the power of his word, he graciously brings about saving faith the same way. Let no one boast in themselves because they chose to repent and believe. To God be the glory great things he has done, when we understand the text.