How is grace related to faith and good works? Do we choose to allow God’s grace into our lives, or is it actually something that changes our desires and makes us willing to believe in the first place? And what does Paul mean when he says that we “who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ”?
On this program, the hosts continue their series on Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, and will be discussing verses 8-14 of chapter 2. Join us for this new edition of the White Horse Inn.
“There is a tendency in a lot of theology today and probably in a lot of our own hearts to think that to the extent that we are active, God isn’t and to the extent that God is active, we’re not. And here is where a really broad historic tradition in the Christian faith says, no, to the extent that God is active, you are active. It’s exactly the opposite. He is at work in you, both to will and to do for his own good pleasure. So, yes, we are believing. That is our act. It is our act of faith, but it is not an autonomous act of faith. It is the gift of God. It’s something that God is giving us and that the Holy Spirit is working in us through the gospel.”
Term to Learn
“True Saving Faith”
True saving faith is a faith that has its seat in the heart and is roots in the regenerate life. The seed of the faith is implanted by God in the heart in regeneration, and it is only after God has implanted this seed in the heart that man can actively exercise faith. The conscious exercise of it gradually forms a habit, and this becomes a powerful aid in the further exercise of faith. When the Bible speaks of this faith it generally, though not always, refers to it as an activity of man. It may be defined as a certain conviction, wrought in the heart by the Holy Spirit, as to the truth of the gospel, and a hearty reliance on the promises of God in Christ.
(Louis Berkhof, Manual of Christian Doctrine, p. 250)