Book Review: The Apostle’s Creed

The Apostle’s Creed by Dr. Albert Mohler  was a great way to reflect over some of my earliest seminary classes and ultimately the foundation of our Christian faith.  Dr. Mohler shared his own story of learning The Apostle’s Creed as a part of one of his first seminary classes and how the Lord used that study to really open his eyes to the foundation of our faith as believers.  In this book, he took the Creed phrase by phrase and wove in Scripture to point to the necessity of each statement.  The Apostle’s Creed is thousands of years old and started with the early apostles after Jesus died as a way to remind themselves of what they knew to be true about Christ.

I enjoyed reading Dr. Mohler’s thoughts on the Creed and highlighted several things while reading.  I have posted those notes below…

  • All Christians believe more than is contained in the Apostles’ Creed, but none can believe less. Location 297
  • But Christianity is not belief in belief. It is belief in a propositional truth: that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and savior of sinners. Location: 306
  • The idea of a doctrineless Christianity stands at odds with the words of Christ, who revealed himself to the apostles in explicitly doctrinal terms. Location: 336
  • As we examine the creed, consider these seven reasons why the Apostles’ Creed is useful and necessary in the life of the church.
  1. Creeds define the truth.
  2. Creeds correct error.
  3. Creeds provide rules and standards for God’s people.
  4. Creeds teach the church how to worship and confess the faith.
  5. Creeds connect us to the faith of our fathers.
  6. Creeds summarize the faith.
  7. Creeds define true Christian unity. Location: 398
  • The late historical theologian Jaroslav Pelikan wrote, “Tradition is the living faith of the dead, traditionalism is the dead faith of the living.” Location: 388
  • These documents do not seek to replace Scripture. Instead, they accurately seek to summarize its content into succinct statements in order to equip Christians with brief yet crucial distillations of the faith. Location: 396
  • A. W. Tozer brilliantly summarized the entirety of Christian discipleship when he said, “What comes into our minds when we think of God is the most important thing about us.” Location: 438
  • We begin with a wrong conception of God, we will misconstrue the entirety of the Christian faith. This fact is why heretics and false teachers so often begin by rejecting the doctrine of the Trinity. If we can reject God as he has revealed himself in Scripture, then we can and will reject everything else. Location: 440
  • As evangelical theologian Carl F. H. Henry so beautifully explained, God loves us so much that “He forfeits His own personal privacy that His creatures might know Him.” Location: 454
  • The most fundamental features of our worldview are rooted in our doctrine of creation. Every worldview has a theory of origins, and how we understand our origins will influence the way we think about human identity and purpose and where history is headed. How we answer the question of origins reveals what we think about our worth, our purpose, and our sense of obligation to one another and to God. Location: 582
  • Christianity affirms the intelligible foundation from which the natural sciences could emerge. For if the world were not intelligible, we could not investigate it and would have no rational foundation for scientific inquiry. Location: 738
  • The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. (Ps. 19:1) Location: 770
  • God’s provision is perhaps never more sweetly summarized than in the first article of Luther’s Small Catechism of 1529: I believe that God has created me and all that exists; that he has given me and still sustains my body and soul, all my limbs and senses, my reason and all the faculties of my mind, together with food and clothing, house and home, family and property; that he provides me daily and abundantly with all the necessities of life, protects me from all danger, and preserves me from all evil. Location: 782
  • On the Day of Judgment, we will be defined by our Christology. We will meet the Christ either as Savior, or we will meet him as Judge. Location: 836
  • The cross thundered forth the love of God in spectacular power as God sacrificed his own Son in place of us. God poured his wrath upon his Son, executing justice for our rebellion against him. At the same time he placed upon sinners the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. He credited our sin to Christ and gave us his righteousness through faith. Location: 1,469
  • The burial of the Son of God displays the paradoxical unity of the full horror of human sin and the illustrious, cosmic, infinite, and scandalous love of God for us in Christ. Location: 1,585
  • Anyone not bearing the fruit of the Spirit does not belong to Christ. Our life in the Spirit means that the virtues of godliness grow and manifest themselves in our daily lives. As we kill sin by the power of the Spirit, we also, by walking with the Spirit, display the fruit of godliness and the very character of the Spirit himself. As we walk by the Spirit, the depth of our love, the fullness of our joy, the solidity of our peace, the lengths of our patience, the exuberance of our kindness, the breadth of our goodness, the greatness of our faithfulness, the meekness of our gentleness, and the sacrifice of our self-control all flourish and bear a glorious harvest sweet to others and delightful to God. Brothers and sisters, your walk with the Spirit is meant to be a fruitful, powerful, and joyful walk. Location: 2,311
  • Because of sin, nothing in a person merits an immortal hope. Yet, by God’s grace and love, by his sovereign power, the physical body perishes, yet God will raise it to life. Though the pangs of death still loom on the horizon, Christians live in an absolute confidence that what was sown in dishonor will be raised in honor. What was sown in weakness will be raised in power. What was sown as perishable will be raised as an imperishable body. Location: 2,903
  • Christians are too often satisfied with the world and all its temporal pleasures, forgetting Paul’s words: If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Col. 3:1–4) Location: 2,974
  • Heaven is not a place of less; it is a place of infinitely more. All the good things known in this life will either be amplified infinitely in the life everlasting, or they will be transcended by things that are infinitely better. God reveals in his Word the stunning reality of the life to come:        •   “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?” (John 14:2)  •   “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” (Rev. 21:4)  •   “But, as it is written, ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him.’” (1 Cor. 2:9)  •   “For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.” (Heb. 13:14) •   “The wall was built of jasper, while the city was pure gold, like clear glass.” (Rev. 21:18) Location: 2,988

 

 

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