The following are some notes from a commentary on Mark, by Eugene M. Boring.
“The father’s anguished affirmation / plea is the climax of the story, which is not so much about an exorcism as about faith. The belief/unbelief elements in the father’s outcry should not be parceled out quantitatively, despite Matt 17:19-20 and many interpreters since Mark’s point is more dialectic. The man both believes, and does not believe. He believes but does not have faith as a possession to which he can appeal, and he knows he must pray (an expression of faith) for faith (which he does not claim to have).
The disciples lacked faith, but Jesus instructs them that their failure was due to lack of prayer. This is not a change of topics, for faith and prayer are two sides of the same coin (11:23-25).”
~ What I like about this is that Boring distinguishes between belief and faith. They are distinct!
~ Added to this Boring seems to imply that faith can be had as a possession.
~ I also like that Boring mentions that prayer is an expression of faith. How true?
But note that Boring says: “… he knows he must pray (an expression of faith) for faith …“
Lets change this a bit: ~~~> he knows he must express faith for faith. ~~~> he knows that he must express faith in certain way in order to have it in another way.
This means that there are distinct forms of faith.
It seems that faith has the features of both nouns and a verbs.