“For by grace are you saved through faith” (Ephesians 2:8)
We had traveled about a half day and were making good progress when someone asked, “Hey, so what’s that funnel all about in the Tour Guide?”
Remember that Paul told us that we are saved by grace through faith. In our visual Tour Guide drawing, we can see “grace” entering the “funnel of faith” at the top. When grace passes through faith, what comes out of the funnel, and floods our lives is — salvation.
Salvation. That’s a word we need to examine closer. Most of us assume that it means “being born again.” No, it is much more than that. Being born again is but one part of the great salvation we have in Jesus.
By definition, salvation is the complete reordering of our entire lives in keeping with the will of God. Faith, another word we need to redefine, means something much more than merely “believing” – it means “knowing.”
Faith is the conscious awareness of what meets with God’s approval (as revealed to us by the Spirit of God through the Word), and the courageous decision to live within that conviction. James Ryle
“Faith comes by hearing,” the Bible says. And note; it does not say, faith comes by reading. There are many who read the Bible and never hear what God is saying. They see the golden leaves on the surface of the river, but do not see the true gold beneath the surface on the river bed.
We hear when the Spirit of God opens our hearts to God’s voice. Faith comes when the gift of hearing occurs, and in that moment we not only know God’s will, but we are also filled with the desire to do God’s will.
Putting this all together here is what we learn.
When we hear (i.e., experience the gift of faith that causes us to know) what God is saying to us, and we agree with Him (i.e., humbling ourselves in the sight of the Lord), then God gives us grace (i.e., the power of Christ to do God’s will) and we experience salvation (i.e., the complete reordering of our entire lives in keeping with God’s will).
And that’s what the “funnel” is all about.
So, if there are no other questions, let’s pick up the pace. Having made this journey before, I can tell you that we are in for a special treat first thing tomorrow. The Ancient Library (where I received my credentials for this Tour) is but a half day’s distance ahead.
We’ll stop there for an extended visit before we make our final push to the place named Grace.