Belief in Christ and Regenration



  • dear geomike, in your last post you state: 'Faith is not a gift. This is your choice whether to believe or not, it is not a gift'.

    well, if you really meant the above statement, i may not be too wrong if i said we are reading two different Bibles.
    in my bible, Saint Paul said:  'For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one can boast'.

    without alluding to any protestant teaching/interpretation, just reading the biblical text, it is obvious that your statement blatantly contradicts st Paul's statement. what else can i say?..

  • lightening,

    You wonder if perhaps you have not read the Scriptures carefully enough. They say..

    For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.

    It is GRACE which saves us. Of course it is, Grace is the undeserved love and life of God. The Scripture does not say that faith saves us. It says that Grace saves us.

    It is your statement which disagrees with Scripture. The Fathers, when they discuss this passage, understand it as saying, as it does, "we are saved by Grace". No-one disputes this. Our salvation is entirely dependent on God. But we must exercise faith, which is our own responsibility and which fallen man may still do. You are attaching the words 'gift of God' in error to the means by which the gift, which is grace, is received.

    It is as if I said, "you have been saved by food, through eating, which is the gift of God". It is not eating which is the gift, it is an aspect of our human nature to eat, and to be able to turn to God. But it is the provision of food, in this example, and grace in the other, which is the gift. A hungry man cannot make food appear just because he is hungry, but when food is provided he can certainly eat. A man such as we are cannot save himself, but he can certainly exercise faith when God supplies His grace as a gift.

    Father Peter
  • very clearly explained, Father Peter. thank you.
    i shall add nothing at this stage. it could get quite technical and i am sure i would do much better exercising self control and paying you the due respect rather then proving my point or ....myself.
    thank you for taking the time to clarify.
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