When we believe we are saved by GRACE, through FAITH, then the arrow points DOWN. God is the one who is continually sending his GRACE to us, which gives us our ability to do GOOD WORKS. He is our 'lifeline',our source, our strength, to do Good Works. Not ourselves. In a nutshell, He is the vine, we are the branches....... without Him, we can do NOTHING.
What I believe is that it's not us who are able to do good works, even if we have that realization, but that it's God who does the works through us. That's why there is no boasting in ourselves.
As I said in previous posts, Grace chastens us to abandon ungodliness (Titus 2:11). And Hebrews talks about how when God chastens us, we experience the peaceable fruit of righteousness thereby. It's all of God not of us.
The end goal, I believe, of faith is as Peter put it in 2 Peter 2, to "escape the pollution of the world." The way he speaks about it reveals that salvation/healing/deliverance is an dis-entanglement from pollution. That's what works have to do with salvation, becoming disentangled, and not returning.
That word "escape" reminds me of "delivered" or "saved."
We don't escape drowning just by believing the life vest is there, we must also put it on and not take it back off.
In the same way, we don't escape the pollution of the world by only believing Jesus exists, but ALSO by receiving the Spirit and walking by the Spirit.
Hi Seth. Yes, faith is just the beginning.
The faith of a mustard seed, will begin a transformation. Unless we start to say NO, there will be no stopping God. His grace will pour out on us and make us new.
More and more of Him in us, less of the 'old man', who used to be ourselves.
As a teacher, I picture a sand table, being emptied of the sand, and then it can be filled with water, instead. We 'pull the plug' on our old lives and allow God to fill us with Himself.
Isaiah 40: …30Though youths grow weary and tired, And vigorous young men stumble badly, 31Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.
Galatians 2: 19"For through the Law I died to the Law, so that I might live to God. 20"I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.
21"I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly."