Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Nicene Creed

Sunday night we discussed the Nicene Creed and what role it played in our understanding of the Trinity and the doctrine of Christ (called Christology).  The Nicene Creed was primarily a response to the challenge of Arianism which rejected the deity of Christ.  The Arian heresy is now found in the Jehovah's Witness movement.  They too reject the deity of Christ and instead believe that Jesus was the first created being of God (Jehovah) and the Spirit was created by Jesus. 

Here is the traditional version of the Nicene Creed:

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man.  For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried.  On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father [and the Son]. With the Father and the Son he is worshipped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. 

We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.  We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. AMEN


This is a good creed that virtually every true Christian affirms including Catholics, Protestants, and Eastern Orthodox.  Even the Emerging Church claims to affirm it (but I think that is a farce).  We'll have more to say about this creed next month when we discuss the doctrine of Christ.

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