Wednesday, March 6, 2013


The exact phrase, "the gift of God," appears seven times in the Bible.  I will print each verse in bold type, and then make my comment(s).

*  Ecclesiastes 3:13 - "And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labour, it is the gift of God."  This is an interesting verse.  It teaches us that no matter how hard one works, the fruit of one's labor is not guaranteed; it is the result of God's grace.

*  Ecclesiastes 5:19 - "Every man also to whom God hath given riches and wealth, and hath given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour; this is the gift of God."  Again, when man's labor produces results, God is to get the glory.

*  John 4:10 - "Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water."  I would capitalize the word "Gift" here as it appears to refer to Jesus Himself (cp. Jn. 3:16; 1 Jn. 4:9).  Then again, it could be referring to the Holy Spirit (cp. Jn. 7:37-39; Acts 2:38; 10:45).

*  Acts 8:20 - "But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money."  In this context of this passage, Peter is definitely speaking of the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:15-20).

*  Romans 6:23 - "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."  Here, the gift of God is not the person of Jesus, but the eternal life one receives as the result of believing in Him.

*  2 Timothy 1:6 - "Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands."  By comparing 1 Timothy 4:14, we see that Paul is referring to the Spiritual Gift of Prophecy.

*  Ephesians 2:8-9 - "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."  I saved this one for last because there is much disagreement about the identity of "the gift of God" in this passage.  First, the context is about salvation (v.5-7).  In addition, other verses declare salvation to be by grace (a gift) (Rom. 3:24-25; 4:16; 2 Tim. 1:9).  And then there is the biblical evidence that faith is not considered works (Jam. 2:14-26).  Notice that true faith results in genuine salvation and the production of good works is the evidence (Eph. 2:10).

Salvation is the gift of God to those who receive His greatest gift:  His Son!    

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