Last Sunday we learned about the Creeds that we say in church, the Apostles Creed and the Nicene Creed. We learned that creeds are succinct statements of belief shared by Christians and recited together out loud.
Each creed contains three important sections that express the Trinity. For example, from the Nicene Creed: We believe in: one God, the Father Almighty,… in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God,… in the Holy Spirit, the Lord the giver of Life. The Nicene Creed, normally said in the Sunday Eucharist, is the earliest, dated to 325 C.E. It is also the longest of the two and contains more detail about the Holy Spirit. The Apostles Creed, also called the Baptismal Creed, was developed around 400 C.E. It is what we recite in the Daily Office. Saying the Apostles Creed in the morning, whether at home or at church or school, is a simple way for each one of us to renew our baptism. Baptism, like conversion and faith, is something we live into each and every day.
We discussed Paul, his dramatic conversion, and how he changed his behavior as a result of Christ’s call. We read his own statement of belief in 1Corintians 15.1-11, and thought about writing our own statements. Paul refers to himself as “the least of the apostles” because before his conversion he persecuted Christians, but by “the grace of God” he came to believe, and passed on the Gospel to people in different countries in the world.
Thanks to Jesus Christ, the work of his disciples, and all of the generations of believers since Christ’s death and resurrection, we have the Gospels, Paul’s letters, and our Creeds. These have been passed down to us from generation to generation over thousands of years. This is our Christian tradition, which is like a relay race, where each generation passes the baton on to the next generation, and so on into the future. This is one way we keep our faith alive, just like saying the Apostles Creed and praying the Lord’s Prayer. By beginning in the morning, you set your priorities straight for the day. Put God first, and he will be with you, to lead you and help you, in all that you encounter and all that you do. Isn’t this a wonderful way to live?