Last night, during my bible study, I was reading Ephesians chapter 2. When I got to verse 8 and 9, I paused and began to ponder on those verses:
“8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
“BY grace… THROUGH faith…”
That part stuck out to me most. Why in that order? How come I can’t be saved the other way around–by faith, through grace? As I began to seek understanding, I had a vision.
In my vision, I was standing outside on the side of the road–on my way to church. I said to myself, “BY faith, I am going to get to church.” I really believed with all of my heart that I would get to church BY faith. There was no doubt in my mind about it. However, no matter how much faith I had in myself, I didn’t move from the spot I was standing at. There was no plan of action; no power behind just my faith alone.
Then, when I realized getting to church “BY faith” wasn’t working, I took out my phone, went to the GPS app, and began to look up other ways that I could get to church by. The app said I could get to church BY bus, BY car, BY bicycle, or BY walking. But there was no option to get there simply BY faith. So I chose to get to church BY the bus. But it was THROUGH my faith that motivated me to get on the bus, believing that the bus would get me to church.
The definition of BY is: the agent performing an action; the means of achieving something; that which is used as a route.
Then the vision went away and I realized why I am not saved by faith alone. Grace is the agent that performs the action of salvation. Grace is the means to attain salvation. Grace is the route that brings me to the place of salvation. I don’t get saved simply by believing that I will be saved. In that case, my faith alone would be enough to save me; it would be like a self-righteous work; then I would be able to boast in myself. But no! Faith is powerless unless you put your faith in something that has the power to make it happen. So, just like how in the vision, I got to church by putting my faith in the bus, likewise, I get saved by putting my faith in the grace of God that was extended to me. And Jesus is the epitome of the grace of God. So I get saved through my faith in Jesus.
Unlike in the GPS scenerio, where I had FOUR ways to get to my destination (bus, car, bicycle, walking), when it comes to salvation, there is only one way to get to heaven. It is through Christ alone! He’s the only way BY which salvation is attained.
By grace, through faith. It makes more sense to me now!
Grace is the VEHICLE to salvation. But you have to believe in your heart that this vehicle will get you to your destination. That’s where your faith comes in. Grace will indeed save you. But if you have no faith, then you won’t benefit from the salvation that grace has to offer.
Grace is the vehicle and faith is the key.