Some say we are saved by faith and that is true if it is the right kind of faith.
Jesus' statement above is like the one in the following passage:
Did the power of God flowing through Christ heal the woman or did the woman's faith heal her?
Well, from God's viewpoint there is no difference because He is diligently searching earth for someone with enough faith to receive His gifts and when He finds that faith something WILL happen.
But Jesus was concerned about true faith vanishing:
Many would say there is much faith on earth now. Surely there are millions, perhaps billions who call themselves "Christians" and claim to have faith. But can that "faith" save them? Or is much of it a "dead faith" that changes nothing?
So what is true faith?
Why does real faith include the belief that God rewards those who diligently seek Him? Without that part there is no purpose for seeking God and His Kingdom and hence no true submission to God is possible nor could there be any works that make it a real living faith. In other words, why seek God if it makes no difference? But if it makes a real difference, why not give up everything to seek Him?
There are lots of ways to have a false faith because lies abound in this world while truth is a scarce commodity. But the most insidious way is found in statements like the following:
"I am saved because I have faith in Jesus Christ."
It sounds like that person has saving faith in the Lord Jesus. But a closer look will show that such people are trusting in their own faith to save them. The main clue is found in the omission of the word "Lord" which tells us that they do not know that salvation is a matter of submitting to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Salvation requires one to enter into a new "Kingdom" - the Kingdom of God! Jesus cannot save you if He is not your Lord. A faith that does not include true submission to the Spirit of the Lord is a "faith without works" and is a dead faith that cannot save one.
A person with "faith in faith" rather than faith which produces submission to the Lord Jesus is in the same boat as those who are trusting in all the great things they think they have done for God. Both are trusting in what they have or have done. But underneath it all hides a rebellious resistance to the will of God.
Jesus described His true followers this way:
Notice that He describes those who are saved as "I know them" and those who are lost as "I never knew you". True followers hear and answer when He calls and they open the door of their deepest being so that He can come in and know them intimately. That is what ultimately saves us - being known by our Lord! And that is the goal of His grace at work in us.
Those who deny Him access tell themselves many lies: God doesn't speak to people personally now like He did in the days of the apostles. I am OK because I read my bible, pray, attend church, etc. God only talks to "special" people. I hear Him by listening to my pastor or preacher. I can't receive dreams, visions, or prophecies. What if the voice I hear is from Satan? Etc, etc.
Such people only hear what agrees with their pet doctrines or the understanding of their minds. God has no real access to their hearts.
Do we have real faith? Will Jesus find true faith when He returns? Or will it all have died and been replaced by crude imitations?
There is a witness deep inside me - I know that I know that I know that a true faith and walk with the Lord Jesus is possible. If you know that too, you can seek and trust and hope with everything in you and you will not be disappointed!