the First Week of Advent
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Morrish Bible Dictionary
πίστις.This is a kindred word to 'believe,' and indeed the two cannot be separated. In the O.T. the word 'faith' occurs but twice. Deuteronomy 32:20; Habakkuk 2:4 . The words are emun, emunah; but aman is often translated 'to believe.' The first time this occurs in the O.T. is when it is said of Abraham that "he believed in the Lord, and he counted it to him for righteousness." Genesis 15:6 . This is referred to in Romans 6 where the faith of the believer is counted for righteousness, and the conclusion is drawn that if any believe on Him that raised up Jesus the Lord from the dead, righteousness will be reckoned to them.
This may be called saving faith. It is confidence in God founded on His word; it is believing in a person, as Abraham believed God . "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life." John 3:36 . There is no virtue or merit in the faith itself; but it links the soul with the infinite God. Faith is indeed the gift of God. Ephesians 2:8 . Salvation is on the principle of faith in contrast to works under the law. Romans 10:9 . But true faith is manifested by good works. If a man says he has faith, it is reasonable to say to him, "Show me thy faith" by thy works. James 2:14-26 . Otherwise, if the faith does not manifest itself, it is described as 'dead,' and is altogether different from real, active belief. A mental assent to what is stated, as a mere matter of history, is not faith. A natural man can believe such things: "the devils also believe and tremble," but true faith gives joy and peace.
There is also the power and action of faith in the Christian's walk: "we walk by faith; not by sight." 2 Corinthians 5:7 . We see such faith exemplified in the lives of the Old Testament saints, as given in Hebrews 11 . The Lord had often to rebuke His disciples for their want of faith in their daily walk. The believer should have faith in the living God concerning all the details of his daily life.
THE FAITHis at times referred to in the sense of 'the truth;' that which has been recorded, and which the Christian has believed, to the saving of his soul. For this the Christian should contend earnestly; for it is fundamental; and many false prophets are gone into the world, and have even crept into association with the saints unawares. Jude 3 .
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Morrish, George. Entry for 'Faith'. Morrish Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​mbd/​f/faith.html. 1897.