The Apostles' Creed
(Early Second Century Creed)
I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth
And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary
Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried; He descended into hell
The third day he rose again from the dead
He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty
From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead
I believe in the Holy Ghost
I believe a holy catholic church; the communion of saints
The forgiveness of sins
The resurrection of the body
And the life everlasting. Amen.
Philip Schaff, in his Creeds of Christendom, writes of the Apostles' Creed, "As the Lord's Prayer is the Prayer of prayers, the Decalogue is the Law of laws, so the Apostles' Creed is the Creed of creeds. It contains all the fundamental articles of the Christian faith necessary to salvation, in the form of facts, in simple Scripture language, and in the most natural order--the order of revelation--from God and the creation down to the resurrection and life everlasting." (1) The simple doctrinal statements within this creed are clear and concise, and their meaning cannot be misconstrued.
(1) Philip Schaff, The Creeds of Christendom, Volume 1: The History of Creeds, pp 14-15.(Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books) 1983
- Primary Concerns:
- Phrase "He descended into hell" has been hotly debatable.
- Phrase "holy catholic church" speaks of the universal church of Jesus Christ as a whole, not specific to those under the Roman Catholic See.