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Greek Word Study - Commitment


That’s what we need -- commitment. Let’s rally the troops and read them some scriptures on this fine word! Let’s go to our concordance and find all the passages where “commitment” is found in the Bible. OK? But surprisingly, “commitment” is not in your Bible.

Perhaps we should look for another form of the word, such as “commit.” I notice that a person can commit adultery, commit a breach of contract, commit fornication, commit sin, and commit apostasy. But this isn’t really the kind of “commitment” I had in mind.

So what’s the deal? Didn’t they have the concept of commitment back then? (They certainly did.) If so, what was their word for it? (The word in secular Greek was pistis -- PIH stiss.) Doesn’t the word ever appear in the Greek New Testament? (Yes, 243 times.) Then how is it translated in my Bible? (Sorry, you have to wait until the end of this article.)

Outside the New Testament, the Greek word pistis is often translated “obedience,” “commitment,” or “the keeping of a pledge.” It means “loyalty,” “fidelity,” “trustworthiness.”
It means to have such confidence in someone that you will do what he says even if you don’t understand why he says to do it. It means sticking with that person through thick and thin. Pistis means what we mean by “commitment.”

So where do we find this word for “commitment”? In our English Bibles pistis is translated “faith.” That's why being “faithful” didn’t just mean to keep on believing, but to stay loyal. Likewise, to be “unfaithful” didn't mean that you stopped believing, but that you broke you commitment.

So, good friends, keep the faith!