As mentioned in my introduction to faith post, I was in Sunday School class a while back and had the opportunity to discuss Christian maturity with the teacher, and as you may have guessed, we wandered off into the subject of faith.
He had told me there are a number of Greek words in the New Testament that are translated “faith” in our English Bible, and I let him know I thought otherwise.
So I came home and did a quick study, using Blue Letter Bible web site. The following table gives a summary of the New Testament Greek words used when describing our English word “faith”.
|Strongs #||Greek||Transliterated||English Equivalent|
|New Testament (Greek) for “faith”|
|G571||ἄπιστος||apistos||that believe not, unbelieving, faithless, unbeliever, infidel, thing incredible, which believe not|
|G3640||ὀλιγόπιστος||oligopistos||of little faith|
|G4102||πίστις||pistis||faith, assurance, believe, belief, them that believe, fidelity|
|G4103||πιστός||pistos||faithful, believe, believing, true, faithfully, believer, sure not tr|
|G6066||ὀλιγοπιστία||oligopistia||littleness of faith|
I’m glad he challenged me to look it up and I think we were both sort of correct.
The root word found in each of the above greek words is pistos/pistis, and when checked in that web site I like (see above), both are derived from the Greek word “peíthō”.
This has got to be the hardest synonym to discuss, given the current condition of the modern church and my own weakness and failings.
Many times in the New Testament, Jesus tells His disciples that to love Him is to obey Him.
If you love me, you will keep my commandments.
Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.
Yes – but I think there is even more to it!.
By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
If we obey Him, we show the world that we love Him.
And as I try to understand the gospel, it is becoming apparent to me that one who realizes I love Jesus due to my obedience to His will is the one who is typing this message. Yes, although I am in the world, and have been told I am not part of it, I still gain (have) confidence (see above) through my active participation in the known will of God for my life.
To “Peíthō” is to obey the One who is the object of faith.
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