The Apostle’s Creed, also known as the Old Roman Symbol, is an early summary statement of Christian belief. It is Trinitarian in structure—there is a section on God the Father, a section on Jesus Christ the Son, and a section on the Holy Spirit.
Because the Apostle’s Creed was written very early, it does not explicitly address later controversies, such as the deity of Jesus Christ and the deity of the Holy Spirit.
The creed is used for liturgy and catechism in many denominations, especially Western denominations, such as the Catholic Church, Lutherans, Anglicans, Presbyterians, Moravians, Methodists, Congregationalists, and Baptists.
When Was the Apostle’s Creed Written?
The first known instance of the creed is in a letter from a Milan synod in 390 AD.
The Apostle’s Creed
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.
* that is, the true Christian church of all times and all places
- Nicene Creed – A statement of Christian belief oftentimes used in liturgy
- Chalcedonian Definition – States that Christ has two natures
- Athanasian Creed – Defines the Trinity in a manner that addresses the heresy of Arianism
- Know the Creeds and Councils – Justin Holcomb – A book that teaches about the historic creeds and councils