Mark Lightman lightmanmark at yahoo.com
Sun Dec 19 08:33:40 EST 2010

Hi, Ren,

A good example of where PISTIS means not so much trust but faithfulness or 
loyalty is Chariton 5:1

τὴν Καλλιρόης πρὸς Χαιρέαν πίστιν...ἐν τῳ πρόσθεν λόγῳ δεδήλωται.


"the loyalty of Calliroe towards Chaireas...has been shown in the preceding 

Up until this point, Calliroe has not really shown trust in Chareas, because she 
thinks he is dead, and at any rate she doubts his own character and fidelity 
throughout the book.  But she is devoted to him, she tries to remain chaste to 
his memory, she persists in committedness.  Faithfulness usually implies trust, 
but not always.

Now, whether Paul believes (e.g. Gal 2:16) that we are made righteous by trust 
IN Christ (EK PISTEWS CRISTOU) or by the faithfulness OF Christ (EK PISTEWS 
CRISTOU) depends on the further question of whether this is an objective or 
subjective genitive, and above all what King Context has to say about the 
matter.  But lexigraphy gets you half way there. 

 Mark L


From: Iver Larsen <iver_larsen at sil.org>
To: b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org; fredsmith1000 at usa.com
Sent: Sat, December 18, 2010 11:24:35 PM
Subject: Re: [B-Greek] PISTIS vs PISTOS

----- Original Message ----- From: <fredsmith1000 at usa.com>
To: <b-greek at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: 18. december 2010 19:36
Subject: [B-Greek] PISTIS vs PISTOS

> I don't believe there is a separate Greek word for "faithfulness" in the N.T.; 
>at least I don't see one.

Yes, PISTIS covers both the English "faith" and "faithfulness".

> That being said, it would seem to me that if Paul or any other N.T. author 
>intended for an existing word like PISTIS or PISTOS to be used to mean 
>faithfulness, he/they would have used PISTOS (faithful) instead of PISTIS 
> Would someone shed some light on this please?
> Thanks,
> Ren Preston

You would find it helpful to look up in a dictionary and study the occurrences 
where PISTIS is used for "faithfulness". While PISTEUW refers to the event of 
putting one's trust in something or someone, the adjective PISTOS describes a 
person or thing as being trustworthy. But sometimes a Greek construction 
requires a noun to be used, and in that case, PISTIS has to do double duty as 
the noun corresponding to PISTEUW, i.e. "faith", and as the noun corresponding 
to PISTOS, i.e. "trustworthiness, loyalty, committedness".

Iver Larsen

B-Greek home page: http://www.ibiblio.org/bgreek
B-Greek mailing list
B-Greek at lists.ibiblio.org


More information about the B-Greek mailing list