What DO we believe?
In times past some of us have recited what has been known as the “Apostles Creed” as a declaration of our faith. I have no interest in reviving this practice or writing an addendum to this document. But, I do want you to see that the very heart of the gospel is no where to be found in the content of this popular creed. The reason that everyone from Roman Catholics to reformed Presbyterians can agree with the statements contained in it is because the offense of the gospel is completely absent. Someone might ask; “Isn’t this what Christians believe?” My answer is yes… but oh, we believe so much more. As is usually the case, the problem is not with what is said, the problem is with what is not said. Read it, you’ll see what I mean.
“I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. The third day He rose again from the dead, He ascended into heaven, sitteth at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty, from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost, the universal church, the communion of the saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.”
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ fully and finally accomplished redemption for all of God’s elect when He died on the cross of Calvary. We believe that when He died as our Substitute under the wrath of God that He fully and finally satisfied Divine justice by paying the sin debt and thereby secured salvation for all for whom He died. We believe that Christ through the Holy Spirit will also succeed in effectually calling and bringing all that He died for with Him into everlasting Glory. We believe that any gospel that robs our Lord of this, HIS glory in the finished, successful, accomplished work of salvation, is another gospel…. which is no gospel at all. Now, there’s the real offense and power of the gospel. Do you believe that?