Creeds of the Faith
The Apostles’ Creed in The United Methodist Hymnal is the affirmation of faith most widely used by United Methodists. The Apostles’ Creed derives its name from its use in the Christian church from as early as A.D. 150 and the early belief that it was used by the apostles. Beginning in the third century, this creed was used at baptisms by the Roman Catholic Church. Through the years it has been used widely by both Roman Catholics and Protestants as the formative statement of the faith into which Christians are baptized (from The United Methodist Hymnal, 1989, p. 881):
I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit
and born of the virgin Mary.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to hell.
The third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended to heaven
and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty.
From there he will come 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 Nicene Creed
The Nicene Creed is frequently used as an affirmation of faith in United Methodist worship services. The Nicene Creed is the historic statement of belief of the Christian faith devised by the Council of Nicaea, convened in A.D. 325 by the Emperor Constantine in the city of Nicaea, located in what is now northwest Turkey. The Creed was revised in 381 by the Council of Constantinople. The Nicene Creed set forth the key affirmations concerning the Christian faith and served as a guide in combating heretical or false teaching. The other important distinction is that it is communal; it is what “we” believe as opposed to what “I” believe, as in the Apostle’s Creed. Following the Apostles’ Creed, it is the second oldest creed of the Christian faith (from The United Methodist Hymnal, 1989, p. 881):
The Nicene Creed
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.
and became truly human.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son
is worshiped and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic* and apostolic church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.