The Apostles' Creed

Fall 2022 Sermon Series

This Fall we will be walking through the Apostles' Creed. Read on to learn more about the text, history, and additional resources!

Text

I believe in God the Father almighty,

maker of heaven and earth,

and in Jesus Christ, God's only Son, our Lord:

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontus Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried.

He descended into hell.

On the third day he rose again from the dead.

He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father,

and 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.

Historical Background

The term “creed” in Latin is symbolum, the word “symbol” in English. This is a helpful way to understand creeds: they are “symbols” or distinctive marks of faith. In other words, when someone asks what Christianity is all about, showing this “symbol” is a good entry point into understanding the faith.


The origin of the Apostles’ Creed is unclear. One tradition argued that it can be traced back to the apostles, with each apostle contributing one of the twelve articles. In truth, we only have evidence of this creed going back to a writing dated to AD 390, when it is first referred to as the “Apostles Creed.” Still, the brevity of the statement and its avoidance of some Christological issues addressed by the Councils of Nicea and Constantanople lead some to believe the creed is much older. The version commonly used today comes from an eighth-century document.


The Apostles Creed is widely used in many Protestant churches today as well as the Catholic church but is not utilized by the Eastern Orthodox Church. It is one of the shorter creeds. 

For Further Study

General Resources

Michael Bird, What Christians Ought to Believe: An Introduction to Christian Doctrine Through the Apostles’ Creed.


Ben Myers, The Apostles’ Creed: A Guide to the Ancient Catechism.