Faith, Belief, and Faithfulness

But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul” (Hebrews 10:39).

The Greek noun pistis (“faith”), the verb pisteo (“to believe” or “to exercise faith”), and the adjective pistos (“trustworthy”, “reliable”, “faithful”) are of vital importance in Scripture.

The noun “faith”—especially when preceded by the article “the”—refers to the body of revealed truth found in the New Testament which is essential to know, believe, and obey if you desire to be righteous before God. All Christians belong to the household of the faith (Galatians 6:10, literal translation) because they were obedient to the faith (Acts 6:7). They are to continue in the faith (Acts 14:22), to contend earnestly for the faith (Jude 3), and to strive together with one mind for the faith of the gospel (Philippians 1:27).

The verb “believe” is the living result of engrafting the words of “the faith” in an honest and good heart. The proclamation of the gospel produces conviction and trust which then culminates in obedience to God’s word.

The adjective “faithful” is the continuing evidence of love and loyalty to Christ. It is an immutable attribute of God (2 Timothy 2:13) which is to be reflected in His Spirit-filled children (Galatians 5:22). As Hebrews 11 clearly proves, to speak of being a believer in God without being faithful to Him is to speak words which are totally foreign to Scripture.

Persevering confidence in God (faith) and constant reliance upon Him (faithfulness) is required of those who believe to the saving of their soul.

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Author: jchowning

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