Faith Accomplishes Salvation

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” (Ephesians 2:8)

We have been saved by Grace. The grace of God is such a comforting thought, it wipes away the worries of living in a darkened world such as ours. It overcomes the feelings of not really knowing what lies just ahead of us. It gives us the confidence to move forward boldly without fear of the unknown, as we know that whatever is ahead of us our Lord has prepared the way if we but follow Him in faith. Grace is our personal gift from God. The Grace of God is demonstrated in that He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus, to pay the debt of our sin and lead us to the glory of God. Jesus is the essence of God and when we have learned of Him we have learned of God the Creator of the heavens and the earth. As the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are one in the Godhead. It was God’s grace toward mankind that He sent His Son that man could be reconciled unto God through Him. “Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18)

Jesus is mankind’s free gift from God through His grace. Therefore this is not something that man could have done but only God could have done out of His love for man His creation. It by God’s Grace, Jesus Christ, that through Him man can be saved through faith. Man cannot buy his passage to heaven, he cannot work his way on the lend lease program, he cannot be awarded a pew in heaven by attending Church, and he cannot live a good life by the worldly standard and go to heaven. Man cannot measure his worthiness against the righteousness of great spiritual men as Dr. Billy Graham, D. L. Moody, Charles Spurgeon or my father, the measure is nothing less than the blood of Jesus Christ and His righteousness. Man must see himself in the light of Jesus’s righteousness and realize that he is a lost sinner. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Man must realize that he has been condemned for the sin that is in his life and that the wages of that sin is death. “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23) That by the grace of God Jesus came into the world to pay that debt of death for us that we might receive salvation from the wrath of God to come.

No one in the human family has a vantage point or a place of advantage to approach God and demand His blessing. Without a saving belief and walk of faith in Jesus Christ all men are an enemy of God. “You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:4) With mankind’s sin nature and infatuation for the world he would have never made a move towards God to reconcile himself. Mankind is hopelessly locked under the influence of Satan, that “thief who comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10) It was God’s purpose since the fall in the Garden of Eden to reconcile man unto Himself and it is God who out of His love made the first move. Those who believe on His Son Jesus is especially pleasing to God the Father although tragically many do not place their trust in the promises of God. The revelation of God’s will is revealed through Jesus Christ and those who respond to Him are greatly blessed. One such man was Noah. The first time we see in Scripture the word “grace” is in Genesis 6:8. “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.” It was through Noah’s trust and faith in God’s promises that saved him and his family from their death in the great flood.

We cannot just stop here without looking at the whole thought of the Apostle Paul. “For by grace you have been saved through faith.” Jesus laid down His life as a personal sacrifice for you and me to pay the debt that we owe for the sins of our life. Jesus laid down His life for the sins of the world out of God’s love for the world. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) Jesus is the atonement for the sin of those who believe on His name and follow Him in faith. Jesus is our only redeemer, there is none other that can satisfy the death debt that is owed for our sin. God in His love for mankind sent His only begotten Son the pay the price for our sin. To receive salvation from Him we must follow Him in faith to receive eternal life with the Father in His Kingdom.

This walk of faith makes all things new. “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” (2 Corinthians 5:17) Once we walked afar off lost on the broad road that leads to destruction but now we walk in faith and our faith draws us near to our Lord. “But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” (Ephesians 5:13) Once we were dead in our sin but now we are alive through our faith in the Christ. “We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.” (1 John 3:14) Once we were the sons of disobedience (Ephesians 2:2) but now through our walk of faith with Jesus we are the Children on God. “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:26) No longer is the desire to conduct our self in the evil of this world but from the new love that has been given in our heart we desire to do the good works of the Kingdom. “Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation.” (1 Peter 2:12) We are no longer desperate in a citizenship of this world but are secure in our citizenship in the Kingdom to come. “So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household” (Ephesians 2:19)

“For by grace you have been saved through faith.” This is the free gift of God, His Grace, Jesus Christ that as we believe upon His name and walk with Him in Faith we will have salvation from the fate that awaits this passing world. We will not face the judgment of the wrath of God that is soon coming to all who remain in disobedience to His Word. The follower of Christ has put his faith in God’s Son Jesus our Lord and Savior. Without that Faith it is impossible to please Him. “And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

Thomas N Kirkpatrick

The Bridges, February 1, 2015

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