Creeds and Evangelicals

By “evangelicals” I mean Baptists and suchlike denominations right now, not evangelicals in the midst of traditions like Anglicanism.  The Anglican evangelical, in contrast to the Baptist evangelical, will cling to the creeds in one hand and the Bible in another as their theological life-rafts in the torrent of bizarre theology our little branch of Christendom is pouring forth (if we had three hands, some would hold aloft the Prayer Book as well).  I grew up in a church that was not only evangelical but charismatic.  We would proclaim the creed every Sunday in the middle of the liturgy, just before a strong, biblical sermon.

In high school, I came to the realisation that my experience of Christianity was not the norm (nor was my experience of Anglicanism).  I had one Baptist friend who was not only unimpressed with the creeds but was even wary of people who pray the Lord’s Prayer.

I don’t know about any movements of people who shun the Lord’s Prayer, but it turns out that this friend was not alone in this low regard for the creeds.  All sorts of “evangelicals” avoid the creeds and anything that sounds like one.  In Cyprus, one of the members of the Greek Evangelical Church was perusing the information booklet about a local English-speaking Protestant church.  It included the Nicene and Apostles’ Creeds as part of what the church believed.  She informed the pastor that this was not a good thing, and did he know that the Orthodox believe in the creed more than in the Bible?

Since the creeds are a distillation of biblical teaching, I don’t see that as a reasonable option.

If you find yourself in the position of a creed-wary evangelical, I encourage you to read them (they are in the sidebar on the main page).  Do you disagree with these documents?  Are they so bad?  I also encourage you, dear evangelicals who avoid creeds, to check out what the Internet Monk has to say (his post being the inspiration to write this post).


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