Is faith a gift from God, or does it originate in a person? Where does faith come from?
In this week’s episode of Trending Faith, Grand Canyon University Pastor and Dean of Students Tim Griffin, EdD, and Dean of the College of Theology Jason Hiles, PhD, sat down to discuss this question.
While it is impossible to cover every aspect of this question, Dr. Hiles started the discussion by looking at a story that takes place in Mark 9, when a man comes to Jesus and brings his son who has been tortured by demons. This father is at his wits end, and he asks Jesus to help his son.
Jesus questions the man’s belief, and the man responds by asking Jesus to help him with his unbelief. While the man was moving toward Jesus in faith, there was still distance between him and Jesus due to his unbelief – and he needed Jesus to help him overcome this.
This story can help us to see the dynamic of both our side as well as God’s when it comes to faith. While there is a sense that faith is a gift from God, it can be hard to understand how God can give us something that we are responsible for exercising on our own.
God draws people to Him and interacts with them. To demonstrate this, Dr. Hiles uses an analogy of a rock. You can pick up a rock, throw it and it will go where you want it to. However, God does not treat us like rocks. God interacts with us in ways that are in line with who we are, as humans made in His image. He communicates with us on a spiritual and moral level, and He deals with our hearts.
Dr. Hiles goes on to say that God transforms our hearts and brings us back to life in order for our faith to be steadfast and genuine, even in the midst of persecution. This is a gift from God, and it is only possible with His help. On the other hand, we also know that faith comes through hearing. As God makes himself known to us, our minds can begin to understand God’s heart, and God will then draw us near to Him.
To hear the full discussion, watch the video below:
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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University.