The Apostle's Creed
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It is written, "I believed, therefore, I have spoken."
With that same spirit of faith we also believe and therefore speak.
(2 Corinthians 4:13)
The Apostle Paul quotes these words in his letter to the Corinthians to illustrate how natural it is for Christians to want to give testimony to their faith. It also illustrates for us why Christians have "creeds" and "confessions." A "creed" is a statement of what a church or group believes, teaches, and confesses. And the reason we have creeds is that we believe certain, specific things about our God and Lord and His will for man. One such "creed" or confession, or statement of faith is The Apostle's Creed. This Creed has served as a simple statement of the Christian faith since a century or two after Christ's death, resurrection and ascension. It is the second chief part of The Small Catechism of Dr. Martin Luther and will serve as the basis for this series of lessons on The Apostle's Creed. The First Article together with Luther's explanation:
I believe in God the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth.
What does this mean?
I believe that God created me and all that exists, that he gave me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members, my mind and all my abilities. And I believe that God still preserves me by richly and daily providing clothing and shoes, food and drink, property and home, spouse and children, land, cattle, and all I own, and all I need to keep my body and life. God also preserves me by defending me against all danger, guarding and protecting me from all evil. All this God does only because he is my good and merciful Father in heaven, and not because I have earned or deserved it. For all this I ought to thank and praise, to serve and obey him. This is most certainly true.
Those first two words, "I believe" are really the key to the whole creed. We believe something specific and real. Our Bible based faith is not a wishy-washy, "we believe whatever we want" sort of belief. To believe in something is to know it, to trust in it, to accept it as truth. We believe, trust, and accept the fact that God created everything, including us. Obviously, this excludes any notion of the theory of evolution, which is basically unbelief.
We believe that God created everything because His Word, the Bible says so. While man has a certain amount of "natural knowledge" of a creator by the testimony of nature and conscience, we cannot know the true and living, Triune God, except by His revelation of Himself. This He does in the Bible. We accept what the Bible says, through faith, a gift of the Holy Spirit, working the Gospel in Word and Sacrament.
Let us always give thanks for the usual things like food and family, etc., but also for God's creation and for His Word, through which he reveals himself as a gracious, merciful, and forgiving God, who gives us life, and gives us salvation through His Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. AMEN.