We know from Scripture that Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. That statement cannot be challenged by arguing that man has the key role in his own salvation. Clearly it is the Lord, and only the Lord, who has initiated and completed the plan to redeem man. Theologians, for hundreds of years, have debated whether man has any part in the plan. Some say he has none and others say he must initiate by choosing and therefore has a part. I remember some years ago that scientists reported that they had discovered a new star but they were confused because it was going in two different directions at the same time. That simply could not be. Our human mind cannot understand that … and so it is with the question at hand. Can the Lord be the ‘author and finisher of our faith’ and man have any part in it? Typically, when man has trouble understanding something that is beyond our capacity, we humans attempt to bring God down to our level by telling Him He has only two choices. Either God is totally responsible for our salvation and we have no say in the matter or we can choose and therefore have a part. That attempt is ridiculous, God has an infinite number of choices, most of which we will never understand.

If we are to grasp this at all we must look at it from a different perspective. Yes, He is the author and finisher of the FAITH, no question about that, we had nothing to do with creating or maintaining His plan, however He has given man the responsibility to choose, to be willing, become clay in the potters hand. In a sense rather than being an important contributor to His plan of salvation, we must rid ourselves of self, become nothing and be willing to accept what He has done. Those two premises do not conflict. We must accept both as from the Lord. And if that star seems to be going in two directions, so be it, we must accept it on faith knowing that someday we will totally understand. To choose to argue either of the two choices is to choose to remain humanly simple minded and not allow the Lord to do His spiritual work in our lives.

Farther alone we’ll know all about it
Farther alone we’ll understand why.
Cheer up my brother, Live in the sunshine.
We’ll understand it all by and by … (Farther Along)

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