The Apostles’ Creed is an ancient statement of Christian belief. It was not the first creed, but it is an affirmation of basic Christian doctrine that dates to somewhere in the third and fourth centuries. Later, additional creeds would expand upon the Apostles’ Creed as a way of addressing heresies or differences that had arisen in various regions of the Church’s presence. It was not until 390 AD that the title “Apostles’ Creed” was used. This may have fostered the idea that each of the apostles of Jesus contributed some particular phrase to the creed. This, in all likelihood, was a mistaken notion. However, it does seem to be clear that this creed was one of the earliest used, and it continues to be used throughout the Church around the world.
Here at First Church, during the season of Easter, which runs from Easter Sunday (April 5) to Pentecost (May 24), we will be utilizing the Creed in our worship services to affirm our shared faith and to teach these foundational truths to young and old alike. Over these next three years on various Sundays, most of the phrases of the Creed will be expanded upon in an article like this one.
Together, we will read it and recite it during these weeks of Easter. We will sing it from time to time. Some will possibly put it to memory for use in their daily devotions and spiritual formation. Whatever the case may be for you, we invite you to ponder and embrace the faith-affirmations of the Apostles’ Creed.
We believe in God the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth.
And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
Born of the Virgin Mary,
Suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead and buried.
He descended into hades;
the third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven
and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty,
from thence he shall come again
to judge the living and the dead.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Church universal,
the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.