Acts 16:31, The Missing Words In Our Creeds
And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
//Would you say a creed is a statement of belief, or is it a guiding principle? Today’s verse is considered worthwhile instruction, a sort of creed in its own, but what exactly are we supposed to believe?
The creedal wars were bloody in the first few centuries as our church fathers bickered over the words that best describe what we must believe. All creeds focused on who Jesus was, rather than the message he delivered. While love (or compassion) was the focus of Jesus’ teachings, its absence in the creeds made bitter theological wars possible, since not one creed stressed what Jesus taught. It remains so today.
Quoted below is the Nicene Creed, the foundation of most of today’s creedal statements.
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 worshiped 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.