There is no question that faith is the designated channel through which man is able to receive the grace of God(Rom.5:1). Only those of faith may receive the grace of God (Heb.11:6). All who do not have faith will not have the grace of God. However, when we say that faith is the channel, what is the nature, content, and quality of the faith that serves as the channel? Everyone has faith of some kind. Atheists believe in their intellect. They believe there is no God. Buddhists believe in Buddha. Our point is that when we say “faith is the channel”, we still have not done enough to describe the right channel for the grace of God to come to man. So, when we talk about faith being the channel, we have to also point out that the channel must be made of the right material, have the right content, be of the right consistency before it will serve as the channel through which man can reach the grace of God. Thus, we have to raise certain questions about the connection between faith and saving grace.
1. What is the CONTENT of saving faith?
A. Faith in Jesus Christ.
1. Faith in (as in direction toward) Jesus.
2. Faith in (as existing in a certain location) Jesus.
B. What must be believed concerning Jesus?
1. Faith that He was a great man?
2. Faith that He was a prophet?
3. Faith that He is the Son of God?
C. Must we believe in our NEED for Jesus?
Must I believe that I am a lost sinner in need of Jesus?
D. Does a person have to believe what Jesus says?
1. About repentance? Lk.13:3
2. About baptism? Mk.16:16
2. When Does the Channel of Faith Actually make the Connection with Grace?
A. At what point in the timing of faith does a person actually become pardoned?
1. When faith is pricking the heart? Acts 2:36,37
2. When faith decides to repent? Acts 2:38
3. When faith submits to baptism in Jesus’ name? Acts 2:38
3. When has faith connected with grace in the past?
A. Does faith exclude obedience?
1. By faith we understand things. Heb.11:3
2. Abel offered....11:4
3. Enoch “pleased God” - 11:5
4. By faith a person “comes to God”, “diligently seeks Him” - 11:6
5. Noah built the ark, “moved with godly fear” - 11:7
6. Abraham “obeyed” - 11:8
7. Abraham “offered up Isaac”. 11:17
B. Naaman met the condition for healing. 2 Kgs.5
C. The blind man washed in the pool of Siloam. Jno.9:7
At what point did faith and grace meet in the healing?
D. When were the convicted people actually saved on Pentecost? Acts 2:36-41
E. When was the Ethiopian Eunuch happy? Acts 8:35-39
F. When was the Philippian jailor happy? Acts 16:30-34
G. When was Saul sure his sins were washed away? Acts 22:16
H. When did Saul think he got IN Christ? Rom.6:3,4; 1 Cor.12:13
4. Is There A Valid Reason Why Baptism Cannot Be The Point In the Channel of Faith When Faith and Grace Meet?
A. Please discuss why not, in view of the quoted verses.
B. Look at Col.2:12 and notice the connection between faith and baptism.
a. One is buried “with Christ” in baptism.
b. While doing so the person being buried in baptism has “faith in the operation of God”.
i. We go down believing that God will circumcise (cut away) the sins of the flesh.
ii. We rise up from baptism believing he has cut them away. Acts 2:38; 22:16
All that God asks of us is to have a good and honest heart when we study His word. Please take your Bible and go through these questions and answer by what you can see the Bible teaches in each passage. If we have misused any verse or taken anything out of context, please love us enough to point it out to us. We do not wish to mislead anyone or to be misled ourselves. God bless all honest hearts in this study. –Terry W. Benton