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Faith is...

Faith is what Jesus described as choosing to give up everything to follow him, to be his disciple. That means absolute, full commitment. St. Paul described it in terms of salvation and justification by faith alone. The Old Testament described faith and salvation in terms of the covenant, and also described faith this way:

Hear Oh Israel, the Lord your God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength. [Dt. 6]

The Hebrew word for 'strength' [meh-ode'] is broad in meaning, including "intensity, vehemence; exceedingly, utterly, great(ly)". Biblical faith is passionate, and requires giving your all to God, loving him with your whole being - mentally, psychologically, intellectually, and emotionally, with passion.

Faith or belief in the biblical sense is not just intellectual assent or intellectual belief. Look at the Latin word for 'faith', which gives you a better sense than our modern Western terminology. The Latin verb credo 'to believe' [as in 'creed'] comes from the Old Latin cor + dare, meaning "to give one's heart". Faith means giving God your heart. Giving him your love, passion, all of you. Whether it's salvational faith or the daily practicing faith of a believer, true faith means giving God your heart, giving up everything to follow him. God just wants your heart - all your commitment, passion, desire, and will, intellect and emotion, your whole being.

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