This week’s thought is a bit different. As we begin a series on the Apostles Creed, we will begin to also use the most recent ecumenical translation of the creed’s words. The Apostles Creed is one of the early creeds and the most often used creed in western worship. With the Nicene Creed and the Athanasian Creed, it is one of three creeds that historic Lutheranism have used. And we are not alone. These creeds are used by many (even most) Christian groups around us. The words we have used in worship have been from the version used in the 1978 green Lutheran Book of Worship. When our current hymnal came out in 2006, the words were updated to match the ecumenical texts being used across many traditions. This week, we will begin to use these words as well. A three week sermon series will also allow us to dig in to the creeds and help us understand what they do and don’t do for us.
To let everyone see the words in the newest translation of the creed, we include the creed below. Many of us know the words of the creed by heart. The shifts in language are all in the second article. Early reciting of the new words will be challenging. But the creeds are to unite us in one common faith. Using the words used by sisters and brothers in partner Christian traditions will also help us be better united with Christians across the land.
Here are the words of the creed we will begin to use this week:
I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
God’s only Son, our Lord.
Who was conceived by the Holy
Spirit and born of the virgin Mary,
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,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
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