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Home Bible Articles Does Grace Alone Save?

Does Grace Alone Save?

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"But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord." Genesis 6:8

What is grace? American Heritage Dictionary defines grace as "a favor rendered by one who need not do so". Merriam-Webster defines it as "unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification". How did Noah find grace in God's sight?

"And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them." Genesis 6:5-7


God was preparing to destroy all life on earth. God gave Noah a way to survive the destruction. God told Noah of His plan and instructed him on how build a means of escape. Without this plan from God Noah would surely have drowned with the rest of mankind. God saved Noah by grace. But does the story end there? No.


The Hebrew writer says Noah was saved by faith.

"By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith." Hebrews 11:7

Noah had to believe God was telling the truth. Noah had never seen a flood. This verse also says Noah and his house were saved by preparing and ark. "...prepared an ark to the saving of his house;..."

Peter tells us that Noah and his family were saved by water.

"Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water." 1Peter 3:20

Water cleansed the world of wickedness.

"And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die." Genesis 6:17

The water bore up the ark to rise high above the earth.

"And the flood was forty days upon the earth; and the waters increased, and bare up the ark, and it was lift up above the earth." Genesis 7:17

So, what saved Noah, God's grace, Noah's faith, Noah's works, the flood waters? Which of these could he have done without? God's grace was the only way he knew the flood was coming. Noah's faith in God made him listen and obey God's plan. Noah's works built the ark. The flood separated Noah and his family from the old world of sin. All of these were necessary for the saving of Noah and his house. God could have built the ark and put Noah and his family into it, but He didn't.


What of us today? How are we saved?

Paul told the Ephesian brethren

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast." Ephesians 2:8-9

In 1Corinthians he says God saves those that believe.

"For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe."1Corinthians 1:21

"But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." Hebrews 11:6

James says we are justified by faith made perfect by works.

"Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only." James 2:22-24

The inspired apostle Peter says salvation is by baptism.

"The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:" 1Peter 3:21

As with Noah in the days of the flood, God's grace has provided a means of salvation. But to be saved we must believe God. We must work the works that He has commanded. Hearing and believing are but the beginning of salvation. As Noah, we must do all that God commands.

"Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he." Genesis 6:22

We must repent Acts 17:30. We must believe and confess Romans 10:9-10. We must believe and be baptized Mark 16:16

Noah's salvation depended on all of these things. God could have built the ark and put Noah in it, but He didn't. He gave Noah a means to be saved. God could have cleansed man of sin, but He chose to save man by means of obedience to His Gospel.

"For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe."1Corinthians 1:21

"He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned." Mark 16:16

Have you been saved "by grace thru faith"? If not you will be destroyed for your unbelief.

"I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not." Jude 1:5




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