Faith vs. Trust - Fides vs. Pistis By Kenneth Schortgen, Jr.
So then trust [cometh] by hearing, moreover hearing by the [spoken] word of God. Romans 10:17
Recently I wrote an article on the Wisdom of Faith that the Lord and the Holy Spirit showed me as I have journeyed in the wilderness the last 8 months, and the scope of His Wisdom opened doors to the truth and understanding of Faith I could never dream of on my own.
However, shortly after receiving His Wisdom on the three stages of faith, I was led to discover that most believers are in bondage because of the very word faith. It isn’t implied that believers MEANT to do this, on the contrary, the bondage was inflicted by the very translators of the New Testament going back to the time of Nicea.
When we look at the New Testament, and see all the scripture that have the word Faith in them, they look innocuous don’t they? And in fact, they seem to RESONATE within us as being what the Lord wants us to do as we strive towards righteousness.
Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, [shall he] not much more [clothe] you, O ye of little faith?
And immediately Jesus stretched forth [his] hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?
And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.
For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Now, I will hold those scriptures and use them again when I show you the underlying truth here.
I am going to tell you something here brethren… and when you see it, I truly believe it will blow your minds.
In the scriptures of the New Testament… in the Latin and later English translations, the word Faith was put in there for A DIFFERENT WORD!
We know from Strongs Concordance that in every place we see Faith, the Greek word Pistis is used as the original reference. However...
When the people of the first century got the letters of Paul, for example, they did not say, “What is pistis?”, as if Paul had invented a new word. Pistis was in common use in the Greek language, and had been for centuries. It is in the writings of the Greeks, including Aristotle, Plato, Herodotus, etc. The first definition of pistis in the Liddell and Scott Greek Lexicon, sold in college bookstores to students of ancient Greek, is “trust in others.” That is why we say pistis means “trust.”
Pistis doesn’t mean Faith, it means Trust!
Trust in what?
Complete and Total Trust and Reliance on Him, and in His promises to us.
Now… where did faith come from?
When the Greek was originally translated to Latin, the word Pistis was changed to a word with a slightly different meaning.
The Bible was then read in Latin for hundreds of years. As the English language developed, our English word “faith” came from the Latin word fides. There should be nothing mysterious about pistis, fides, or faith. We know what trust is. Merriam-Webster defines it as “assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something.”
If both pistis and fides mean “trust,” how did “faith” come to be defined in our culture as “firm belief in something for which there is no proof” (Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th edition)? To understand this, we must remember that a dictionary definition is only a record of how people are currently using the word in their speech and writing. This is why dictionary definitions change as time passes.
What happened to change the definition of faith from “trust” to “firm belief in something for which there is no proof” was: (1) people started to use “faith” as “belief in something for which there is no proof,” (2) that usage was put in the dictionary as a definition of faith, (3) people who did not know what faith was looked it up in the dictionary, saw that definition, and used it that way. This process continued over time until now almost everyone thinks “faith” is “belief in something for which there is no proof.”
Sadly, it is now safe to say that most people do not know that the biblical definition of faith is “trust,” and furthermore that they do not have the knowledge or the tools to research that for themselves. Serious consequences come from believing that the Bible asks us to believe things even though there is no proof for them. Believers become confused about faith, not knowing what it is or how to get it and grow in it. Unbelievers, thinking the Bible asks people to believe things without proof, say it is an unreasonable and illogical book, and reject it—to their own doom.
How did the idea that faith is "belief in something for which there is no proof" enter into the Christian culture in the first place? The actual historical process is long and tedious, but the concept is simple. The Church asked people to trust doctrines that were neither logical nor clearly backed up by Scripture. For example, the doctrine that the “host” (bread) and wine that are used in Roman Catholic Mass become the body and blood of Christ is not logical (for example, it still looks and tastes like bread and wine, not meat and blood), and it is not backed by solid Scriptural exegesis. Priests know this, and so they ask people to “take it by faith.”
From the Latin Fides… (Sempere Fidelis – Always Faithful)
The CRUX of this is, people equate faith now to Belief, not to trust. They call their church, THE FAITH, they call the Doctrines of that church they follow, THE FAITH, they have faith in the traditions and customs that the church does. They have faith in their Pastors and Elders to be correct, etc…
But HERE is the difference between fides and pistis:
Fides is belief or belief in something on the earthly realm, Pistis is trust and trust alone, in God and His promises.
We wonder why believers can't understand absolute and complete trust in God, and his promises… why they seek earthly agencies for guidance and provision or healing (why do we go to a Pastor for healing when scripture says, SPEAK THE WORD and doubt not (Mark 11:24))
It is because believers have been taught to have Fides (Faith) and not Pistis (Trust).
Now, let’s look at the four scriptures using the word Faith in them and CHANGE that to the word Trust and see what happens.
Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, [shall he] not much more [clothe] you, O ye of little faith (Pistis -Total and complete trust and reliance on God and belief in His promises)?
And immediately Jesus stretched forth [his] hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith (Pistis -Total and complete trust and reliance on God and belief in His promises), wherefore didst thou doubt?
And Stephen, full of faith (Pistis -Total and complete trust and reliance on God and belief in His promises) and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.
For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith (Our small measure of faith – Stage 1) to faith (Pistis -Total and complete trust and reliance on God and belief in His promises): as it is written, The just shall live by faith (Pistis -Total and complete trust and reliance on God and belief in His promises).
Does that NOT change the entire scope of what is required of us? It isn’t SIMPLY to believe (Have faith), it is to completely and totally Trust in God as our healer, provider, guidance, councilor, etc… and complete and total trust in the Promises He gave us, and gives us every day.
You know what this means? It means that there is NO MORE, “oh, I didn’t get healed because it was God’s Will.” And, it means that we have no more excuses when we pray to God for provision, healing, etc… and THEN prove to Him we do not trust Him and take seek earthly or strong arm of the flesh means (man’s hospital, using the bondage of credit for something we desire or need, etc…).
And the Lord said, If ye had faith (Pistis -Total and complete trust and reliance on God and belief in His promises) as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.
It isn’t our faith (belief) that will do this… it is simply a small amount of TRUST in Him, and the power and authority He gave us IN His promises that will do the impossible. The actual DOING is His, all we need to do is TRUST completely, and do not doubt, and whatever it is will be done.
Or… the onus is on Him… because this would mean that He is NOT a keeper of His promises.
We ask sometimes WHY we are not doing all the things that the Apostles and early church DID as commonplace and out of expectation. The reason isn’t that the blueprint has changed, it is because our understanding of the blueprint through time, man, and history changed to what we know today.
It isn’t about belief, it is about trust. It isn’t about faith, it’s about TRUST.
And how do we get this and grow in it?
So then faith (literally "trust") [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word ("rhema") of God.
Here is the word of God is the Greek word Rhemas – the Holy Spirit (not the bible) In John 1, the Word of God is Logos – Jesus Himself
Faith comes by hearing the Holy Spirit within us, and the Holy Spirit was given to us By the Word of God (Jesus and the Father). We hear one, we hear All 3.
To grow in faith, ask with all your heart as I did 8 months to LEARN about Trust (Pistis), and when you do… and are willing to go through WHATEVER trials and teaching He puts you through, you will receive as I did, the voice of the Holy Spirit within you that speaks to you on ALL THINGS 24/7.
And if you can Hear the Holy Spirit at all times, HOW can you doubt anything, and how can we doubt that He keeps ALL of His promises?