What is the gift--grace or faith?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Zenas, Dec 10, 2008.

  1. Zenas

    Zenas
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    Ephesians 2:8-9 says:
    What is the gift of God referred to here? Is it grace or is it faith? It may make this thread more interesting if you indicate in your answer whether you are a Calvinist.
     
  2. swaimj

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    The gift is salvation. Grace and faith are the terms of salvation.
     
  3. EdSutton

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    swaimj has it exactly right, here, on the passage in question.

    While there may be verses that one might conceivably interpret where 'faith' or 'grace' might be spoken of, in some manner, as being a 'gift', these verses ain't three of 'em, for this is a linguistic impossibility with the Greek language, here. God did give us the NT in Greek, you will no doubt remember.

    Ed
     
  4. Amy.G

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    Yep. Salvation is the gift.
     
  5. OldRegular

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    Salvation is a gift but the gift in the referenced passage is faith.
     
  6. Amy.G

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    It seems like if faith is the gift referred to here, then according to the rest of the passage, we do not work for faith, lest we should boast. If faith is the gift that we do not work for, then we can stop using this verse to say that salvation can't be earned.

    Salvation is the gift. It's the only way that the verse makes sense.
     
  7. Zenas

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    If it is a linguistic impossibility in Greek, why are all the English translations written so that faith or grace appear to be the gift? I'm not saying salvation is not a gift but these verses don't seem to say so.
     
  8. Allan

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    I think you are looking at it slightly askew to assume such.
    The context of the surounding passages are specifically referencing salvation (the very act of God saving a person). The passage in question is also speaking of salvation (the very act of it) as being a gift but Paul takes it one step further to expound how the gift is recieved - through faith. If Paul would have said through "works" would we still have the same argument that "works" is a gift from God. No, it would be ludicris (sp?). The "faith" aspect (faith being an actaul gift imparted into man) is brought out not due to the context of the passage itself nor it construct but a theological perspective. We must take the passage in context with the surrounding passages and not make it a passage unto itself. We are to deal not with presuppositions brought into the text but the text and context of those passages and lay THAT along side other passages to derive doctrine and theology. Though a passage might 'sum up' what the content is stating, we need to be careful of proof-texting instead of contexting.

    However, let me add this though. The fact that salvation is an actual gift only given by God to man necessitates that we must also acknowledge that the premise of you even being allowed to believe (because God has revealed truth to you) is an act of grace toward man. So in this sense it can be said that faith is a gift of God, whether allowed or specifically given - it only matters to ones theological system
     
    #8 Allan, Dec 10, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 10, 2008
  9. Jim1999

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    Grace,,faith..salvation........that is the order of a simultaneous act. So, in essence, all may be classed as the gift.

    My opinion anyway.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  10. Zenas

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    OK, I will buy into this. The gift probably is salvation. But the translators have really butchered that sentence and there is no way to diagram it so that "it" relates to "have been saved." If you pull that sentence out and give it to someone who has never heard of the Bible, he would have to say the gift must be either grace or faith.
     
  11. Allan

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    Maybe.. IF You only gave them that passage. However context is what and where one derives the meaning of "IT" for the passage in question. What is Paul speaking of and dealing with - salvation itself - the very act of saving a person.

    By grace you are saved is what Paul states prior to the passage and then Paul illistrate the process by expounding on the means through which salvation is imparted - faith. The means does not add anything to the grace of God but is simply the conduit in which God has chosen to work His salvation through.
     
  12. Havensdad

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    It really doesn't matter. If it refers to salvation, as being a free gift, then it does not cost anything, unless that something comes from God. If faith comes from us, rather than being a gift from God, then salvation is not a gift.

    As I pointed out in another thread, faith is the agent whereby He effects His grace: it is NOT the determining agent in this sentence!

    By GRACE you have been saved (Grace is unmerited favor: nothing comes from us)

    THROUGH faith (faith is the MEANS by which God accomplishes His ENDS)

    So it's "By Grace you have been saved, through faith,

    NOT

    "For it is by Faith you have been saved, UNTO Grace"


    All of Him. :godisgood:
     
  13. MB

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    I believe that both are parts of the gift of Salvation. Faith is part of the gift we all receive when we hear the word of God, and Grace is another part of that same gift. Grace is the favor we receive because of the faith we have obtained first. Because of both we are then justified.
    MB
     
  14. TCGreek

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    Both are a gift from God.
     

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