cally, as active and passive" senses of the same word, or logically, as sub-
ject and object of the same act; but there is a close moral affinity between
them. Fidelity, constancy, firmness, confidence, reliance, trust, belief-
these are the links which connect the two extremes, the passive with the
active meaning of ‘faith. Owing to these combined causes, the two senses
will at times be so blended together that they can only be separated by
some arbitrary distinction. When the members of the Christian brother-
hood, for instance, are called ‘the faithful, oi marrot, what is meant by
this? Does it imply their constancy, their trustworthiness, or their faith,
their belief? In all such cases it is better to accept the latitude, and
even the vagueness, of a word or phrase, than to attempt a rigid definition,
which after all can be only artificial. And indeed the loss in grammatical
precision is often more than compensated by the gain in theological
depth. In the case of ‘the faithful' for instance, does not the one quality
of heart carry the other with it, so that they who are trustful are trusty
also?; they who have faith in God are stedfast and immovable in the path
of duty : -
The history of the terms for “faith' in the three sacred languages of
Christian theology is instructive from more points of view than one.

sometimes combined.

1. The Hebrew word signifying ‘to believe, to trust, is the Hiphil pron. i. Hebrew. The Kal sps would mean ‘to strengthen, support, hold up, but is only found Tops

in the active participle, used as a substantive with the special sense, “one
who supports, nurses, trains a child' (maubayoyás, see note, Gal. iii. 24), and
in the passive participle ‘firm, trustworthy.’ The Niphal accordingly
means, “to be firm, lasting, constant, trusty'; while the Hiphil "pron, with
which we are more directly concerned, is, “to hold trustworthy, to rely
upon, believe' (taking either a simple accusative or one of the prepositions,
2 or 5), and is rendered moreča in the Lxx, e.g. Gen. xv. 6. But there is
in biblical Hebrew no corresponding substantive for ‘faith,’ the active
principle. Its nearest representative is myrs, “firmness, constancy, trust-
worthiness.’ This word is rendered in the LXx most frequently by d\si-
6eta, d\mbuvés (twenty-four times), or by trio ris, triarás, détémorros (twenty
times); once it is translated formptyuévos (Exod. xvii. 12), once moodros
(Ps. xxxvi. 3, where Symm. had 8invexós, Aq. miaruv). It will thus be seen
that m}\rs properly represents the passive sense of trio ris, as indeed the
form of the word shows. But it will at times approach near to the active
sense; for constancy under temptation or danger with an Israelite could
only spring from reliance on Jehovah. And sounething of this transitional
or double sense it has in the passage of Habakkuk ii. 4°. The lati-
tude of the Lxx translation, triarus, in that passage has helped out this
meaning; and in St Paul's application it is brought still more prominently
Thus in its biblical usage the word n}\rs can scarcely be said ever to
have the sense ‘belief, trust, though sometimes approaching towards it.

* Throughout this note I have used would of course change places. the terms “active’ and ‘passive' in * “Qui fortis est, idem est fidens,’ reference to the act of believing. If says Cicero, Tusc. iii. 7. referred to the act of persuading they * See the note on Gal. iii. 11.


ii. Greek. riarus.

Classical writers.

Old Testament.

The influence of the Greek rendering however doubtless reacted upon the
original, and in the rabbinical Hebrew it seems decidedly to have adopted
this meaning (see Buxtorf Lea. Rabbin. s. v.). The Aramaic dialects did
something towards fixing this sense by an active form, derived from the
same root spx, but from the conjugation Aphel (corresponding to the
Hebrew Hiphil). Thus in the Chaldee of the Targum of Jonathan, the
word denoting the faith of Abraham, Gen. xv. 6, is Nn)xpon, and the
Syriac renders triarus in the New Testament by the same word 12o iso-on.
2. Unlike the Hebrew, the Greek word seems to have started from
the active meaning. In its earliest use it is opposed to ‘distrust’; Hesiod
Op. 342 riorrels ö, äp rot duds kai drug rial &Neoav avöpas (comp. Theogn.
831 motorrel xpiuar' dra,Xeo'dmarrin 8' doráoora); and this is perhaps the sense
most favoured by analogy". But even if it had not originally the passive
sense of faith side by side with the active, it soon acquired this meaning also,
e.g. Æsch. Fragm. 276 oux dwópos 3pxot riorris dAN’ 6pxov durip: and migris
became a common technical term for a ‘proof.” The transition was aided
by the indefiniteness of the grammatical form, and such phrases as mio riv
exeiv rivés formed a link of connexion between the two. The English word
‘persuasion’ will show how easily the one sense may pass into the other.
In the same manner moros has both meanings, “trusty,’ as Hom. Il. xvi.
147 maróraros 84 oi forke, and ‘trustful,” as AEsch. Prom. 917 ross meðaporious
krūmous marrós. So also dirtoros means both ‘incredulous’ (Hom. Od. xiv.
150), and “incredible’ (AEsch. Prom. 832).
With this latitude of use these words passed into the language of
theology. In the Old Testament, there being no Hebrew equivalent to the
active meaning”, niorris has always the passive sense, “fidelity,’ ‘constancy”,'
unless the passage in Habakkuk be regarded as an exception". So again
there is no clear instance of trigrès with any but the passive sense.

With these

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Strom. ii. p. 432, Potter.
data it is difficult to decide between
two solutions; either (1) It may be in-
ferred from the varying position of uov
that the word had no place in the ori-
ginal text of the Lxx; in this case St
Paul (Gal. iii. 11, Rom. i. 17) may have
quoted directly from the Lxx; or (2)"Ex
Tiaret's uov was the original reading,
afterwards altered into plov ex oria rews to
remove any ambiguity as to the sense.
In this latter case the Lxx translators
must have read "njYpSin “my faith' (for
in}\r Nil “his faith,’ the present He-
brew text), and perhaps intended their
rendering éx tria rečs uov to be under-
stood, “by faith in me' (see however
Rom. iii. 3 roy triaruv ros, 9eos). That
the Hebrew text was the same in the
first and second centuries as at present,
may be inferred not only from St Paul's

The usage of the Apocrypha is chiefly valuable as showing how difficult Apocryit is to discriminate the two meanings, where there is no Hebrew original Pha. to act as a check, and how easily the one runs into the other; e.g. Ecclus. xlvi. 15 €v triarret atroń sixpt&dorón trpoqrjrms kal yuajorón Öv motorres atroo morrès 6páorews, 1 Macc. ii. 52 'A8paap, oùxī āv repaguá, etpé6m triarös kai éAoytorón airá els öukatoorovnv; Ecclus. xlix. Io i\urpaşoaro arous év trio ret *Artöos. In these passages the active sense seems to be forcing itself into notice; and the writings of Philo, to which I shall have to refer presently, show that at the time of the Christian era miaris, “faith,’ ‘belief,' had a recognised value as a theological term.

In the New Testament miorris is found in both its passive and its active New Tes. sense. On the one hand it is used for constancy, trustworthiness, whether tament. of the immutable purpose of God, Rom. iii. 3 row motorriv rod esos karapyjoret, or of good faith, honesty, uprightness in men, Matt. xxiii. 23 doñkare 8apûrepa rod vôuov, rov kpiou kal rô #Aeos kai rov motorriv (see the note on Gal. v. 22). On the other hand, as ‘faith,’ ‘belief, it assumes in the teaching of our Lord, enforced and explained by St Paul, the foremost place in the phraseology of Christian doctrine. From this latter sense are derived all those shades of meaning by which it passes from the abstract to the concrete; from faith, the subjective state, to the faith, the object of faith, the Gospel, and sometimes, it would appear, the embodiment of faith, the Church (see Gal. i. 23, iii. 22–26, vi. Io).

All other senses however are exceptional, and triorris, as a Christian virtue, certainly has the active meaning, ‘trust,’ ‘belief.” But the use of the adjective oi ruo roi for the Christian brotherhood cannot be assigned rigidly either to the one meaning or the other. Sometimes the context requires the active, as Joh. xx. 27 um yivov dirtoros dANä marrós (comp. Gal. iii. 9), sometimes the passive, as Apoc. ii. Io yivov tworrës 4xpt 6avárov. But when there is no context to serve as a guide, who shall say in which of the two senses the word is used ? For the one it may be urged that the passive sense of triarrós is in other connexions by far the most common, even in the New Testament; for the other, that its opposite àmorros certainly means an ‘unbeliever.' Is not a rigid definition of the sense in such a case groundless and arbitrary 7 For why should the sacred writers have used with this meaning only or with that a term whose very comprehensiveness was in itself a valuable lesson"?

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application of the passage (supposing
him to quote from the Hebrew), but
also from the fact that all the Greek
Versions collected by Origen so read it.
See Jerome on Gal. iii. 11, and on Hab.
ii. 4, Op. vi. p. 608 sq (ed. Wall.).
* The difficulty of exact definition
in similar cases is pointed out in a sug-
gestive essay in Jowett's Epistles of St
Paul II. p. 101 (2nd ed.). With Prof.
Jowett's applications of his principles I
am far from agreeing in many cases,
and I consider his general theory of

the looseness of St Paul's language
an entire mistake; but as a protest
against the tendency of recent criticism
to subtle restrictions of meaning, un-
supported either by the context or by
confirmed usage, this essay seems to
me to be highly valuable. The use of
ol artorol is an illustration of this diffi-
culty. The expression eVayyáMov
ros, Xpwroß is another. What is meant
by “the Gospel of Christ'? Is it the
Gospel which speaks of Christ, or the
Gospel which was delivered by Christ,

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3. It has been seen that the meaning of the Greek mioris was reflected on its Hebrew original. No less was this meaning infused into its Latin rendering. The verb murrevo was naturally translated by ‘credo, but this root supplied no substantive corresponding to mioris, no adjective (for “credulus’ was stamped with a bad meaning) corresponding to morós. Words were therefore borrowed from another source, “fides,’ ‘fidelis.” Now “fides, as it appears in classical writers up to the time when it is adopted into Christian literature, is not so much “belief, trust,’ as “fidelity, trustworthiness, credit.’ Its connexion in some expressions however led the way toward this active meaning, at the very threshold of which it had already arrived". In the absence therefore of any exact Latin equivalent to the active sense of motorus”, the coincidence of “fides' with some meanings of the Greek word, and the tendency already manifested to pass into the required sense ‘belief, trust,” suggested it as the best rendering. Its introduction into Christian literature at length stamped it with a new image and superscription. In the case of the adjective “fideles’ again, the passive sense was still more marked, but here too there was no alternative, and the original trio roi was, as we have seen, sufficiently wide to admit it as at all events a partial rendering.

The English terms “faith, faithful,” derived from the Latin, have inherited the latitude of meaning which marked their ancestry; and it is perhaps again that we are able to reader riorris, rigorot, by comprehensive words which, uniting in themselves the ideas of “trustfulness’ and ‘trustworthiness,' of ‘Glauben’ and ‘Treue, do not arbitrarily restrict the power of the original.


The faith of Abraham.

From the investigation just concluded it appears that the term ‘Faith' can scarcely be said to occur at all in the Hebrew Scriptures of the Old

Results of the fore

or the Gospel which belongs to Christ?
or rather, does it not combine all these
meanings in itself?
* Instances of such expressions are,
“facere fidem alicui,” “habere fidem ali-
cui'; comp. Ter. Heaut. iii. 3. Io ‘Mihi
fides apud hunc est me nihil facturum.'
The trustworthiness, demonstrability,
proof of the object, transferred to the
subject, becomes‘assurance, conviction,”
and so Cicero Parad. 9, in reference to
arguments in public speaking says,
“fides est firma opinio." See the whole
passage. This sense of ‘conviction' is,
I believe, the nearest approach to the
Christian use of the term. It never,
so far as I am aware, signifies trustful-
mess, confidence, as a quality inherent
or abiding in a person. To assert a
negative however is always dangerous,
and possibly wider knowledge or re-

search would prove this position untenable. At all events the ordinary sense of “fides’ in classical writers is “trustworthiness, credit, fidelity to engagements.’

* The Latin language indeed offered two words of a directly active meaning, “fidentia” and “fiducia'; but the former of these seems never to have obtained a firm footing in the language (see Cic. de Inv. ii. 163, 165, Tusc. iv. 8o), and the signification of both alike was too pronounced for the sense required. * Fidentia' does not occur at all in the Latin translations (if the Concordance to the Vulgate is sufficient evidence); “fiducia’ is not uncommon, frequently as a rendering of trappmata, less often of remolòmats, 64paos, but never of riorris. Fides, fiducia, occur together in Senec. Ep. 94.

Testament. It is indeed a characteristic token of the difference between going inthe two covenants, that under the Law the “fear of the Lord’ holds very Yestigamuch the same place as ‘faith in God,' 'faith in Christ, under the Gospel. * Awe is the prominent idea in the earlier dispensation, trust in the later. At the same time, though the word itself is not found in the Old Testament, the idea is not absent; for indeed a trust in the Infinite and Unseen, subordinating thereto all interests that are finite and transitory, is the very essence of the higher spiritual life.

In Abraham, the father of the chosen race, this attitude of trustfulness Lesson of was most marked. By faith he left home and kindred, and settled in a Abra: strange land: by faith he acted upon God's promise of a race and an inhe- }.” ritance, though it seemed at variance with all human experience: by faith he offered up his only son, in whom alone that promise could be fulfilled”. Thus this one word “faith’ sums up the lesson of his whole life. And when, during the long silence of prophecy which separated the close of the Jewish from the birth of the Christian Scriptures, the Hebrews were led to reflect and comment on the records of their race, this feature of their great forefather's character did not escape notice. The two languages, which having supplanted the Hebrew, had now become the vehicles of theological teaching, both supplied words to express their meaning. In the Greek triarus, in the Aramaic Rn).2b'n, the hitherto missing term was first found.

As early as the First Book of Maccabees attention is directed to this lesson: “Was not Abraham found faithful in temptation, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness”?' Here however it is touched upon very lightly. But there is, I think, sufficient evidence to show that at the time becomes of the Christian era the passage in Genesis relating to Abraham's faith had a thesis become a standard text in the Jewish schools, variously discussed and to. commented upon, and that the interest thus concentrated on it prepared the way for the fuller and more spiritual teaching of the Apostles of Christ.

This appears to have been the case in both the great schools of Jewish theology, in the Alexandrian or Graeco-Judaic, and the Rabbinical or Jewish proper, under which term we may include the teaching of the Babylonian dispersion as well as of Palestine, for there does not seem to have been any marked difference between the two.

Of the Alexandrian School indeed Philo is almost the sole surviving (i) Alexrepresentative, but he represents it so fully as to leave little to be desired. &ndrian In Philo's writings the life and character of Abraham are again and again udaism, commented upon*. The passage of Genesis (xv. 6), doubly familiar to us from the applications in the New Testament, is quoted or referred to at

* Acts vii. 2–5, Rom. iv. 16–22, Heb. xi. 8–12, 17—19.

* 1 Macc. ii. 52. Other less distinct references in the Apocrypha to the faith of Abraham are 2 Macc. i. 2, Ecclus. Xliv. 19–21. In both passages riaros occurs, but not triarts.

* The history of Abraham is made

the direct subject of comment in the
works of Philo entitled De Migrat.
Abrah. I. p. 436 (Mangey), De Abrah.
II. p. 1, Quaest. in Gen. p. 167 (Aucher),
besides being discussed in scattered
passages, especially in Quis Rer. Div.
Her. I. p. 473, De Mutat. Nom. I. p.

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