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Holman Bible Dictionary
In the New Testament the adjective “faithful” is a derivative of the Greek noun meaning “faith.” Here we get the translation “faithful” as a natural derivative of faith. Once again the fundamental meaning is that the one so described is trustworthy and loyal. The root idea is that one has fidelity toward another person or toward God. For example, in 1 Corinthians 7:25 Paul commended himself to the Corinthians as one who is “faithful” (KJV) or “trustworthy” (NAS). In Revelation 2:10 the church in Smyrna and subsequent readers are commanded “be thou faithful unto death.” And, in Ephesians 1:1 Paul addressed the letter “to the faithful in Christ Jesus.” In other cases, however, “faithful” describes God's mode of relation toward persons or toward God's creation.
Many of these passages speak of God as faithful in order to comfort and encourage Christians. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9 ). “God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able” (1 Corinthians 10:13 ). “Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it” (1 Thessalonians 5:24 ).
The faithful person is steadfast, unchanging, and thoroughly grounded in relation to the other. This sort of fidelity, or faithfulness, is used in both the Old Testament and the New Testament to describe God's relation to the world and to describe the quality of relationship that Israel and Christians are called upon to have with God and with one another. See Faith; Trust; Trustworthy.
William L. Self
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Faithful'. Holman Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hbd/f/faithful.html. 1991.