Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The Apostle's Creed (3)

 THE APOSTLE'S CREED (updated language)

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth;

I believe in Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, our Lord.  He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary.  He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried.  He descended to the dead.  On the third day He rose again.  He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father.  He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.  AMEN

The Apostle's Creed is an ancient statement of the Christian Faith. Therefore, it is a personal statement.
Also, it is a time honored standard by which to measure the Faith.
A. to measure the faith of others - "is it Biblical???"
B. to measure 'self. 2 Cor. 13:5 (a)

Obviously, Christian faith means belief in God (line one of Creed)
Also, means belief in Jesus - John 14:1

BUT.....what Jesus??? description is not always the same!!
Then, there were gnostics. Now, Mormons, Jehovah Witness, Muslims

So........the Creed is "I believe in Jesus........" - followed by a description of what Jesus we believe in.

We believe in Jesus........
1. The Christ (title) - Messiah, the promised one, the anointed one - non-Christian Jews are still looking for Him.

2. The Only Begotten Son - there are many sons/children of the Lord, but only one like this. He is unique. Different from anything we can attain.
How special???? John 1:1 John 1:14

3. Our Lord - Master, boss, leader, King.... (note plural vs. I believe) Corporate - us.

4. Conceived of the Holy Spirit - the point is not that it was miraculous, but that it was divine!!!
This is about Deity. He has taken the nature of the Father in heaven.

5. Born of the Virgin Mary - therefore human!!!
Question? How is he both??? Answer: 1 Tim 3:16 (a) - "great mystery"

6. Suffered under Pontius Pilate - for real. A real person in real time in a real way. This is not a myth or story.

7. Crucified, died, buried - He was really dead. So we can see the He OVERCAME death. Victorious.

8. Descended to hell (grave) - ie: experienced death as we do!! Went to the abode of the dead.
1 Pet. 3:18-19

9. He rose again. In body, as predicted, glorified (resurrected) state....

10. Ascended to heaven - literally, visibly. Acts 1:9-10

11. Is seated at the right hand - which means all authority. NOTE: is seated because is Lord!!

12. will come again. The show's not over!!! The Ascension was not the last act! Acts 1:11

13. To judge - A. We'll answer. B. This is the One we'll answer to. Acts 10:42

So, this is the Jesus of the Creed/Apostles/Scriptures/History...
Therefore the Jesus of ORTHODOXY

This is not all we believe about Jesus (there is much, much more) - John 21:25
But, this is a brief summary of the essentials about Jesus.

So, if I believe this..... then I'm IN the faith???
Answer, not necessarily!!!
The Christian faith is more than what you believe about Jesus. It's also that you believe IN Jesus!!

Illustration: A.) Matt. 7:21-23 B.) demons and the creed - not just that we believe the content of the Creed, but, that we trust, cling to, rely upon.

Rom. 10:9-11 - Paul

Again, this is not all we believe about Jesus. But it is the essentials. John 20:30-31

So.......... back to the start - 2 Cor. 13:5

Question: Are you IN the faith?? initially? - have you accepted Jesus as Savior?
practically? attempting to live it

If Not........ would you receive Christ? Confess Christ? Return to Christ? Commit to Christ?

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