Book Notes: The Apostles Creed | Part 3 | “Father”

These are, as the title suggests, minorly edited book notes, but hoping that a few of you might enjoy a peek into them. The other posts in this series on the Apostles Creed can be found here.

What do we believe about God? Right away the creed uses the language of Scripture: God is “Father.” It is an echo of revelation when Christians use this word. It is not an idea based on speculation or philosophical reasoning. Jesus reveals God as his “Father.” He relates to God as his own Father and invites his followers to share in the same relationship.

Myers, Benjamin . The Apostles’ Creed: A Guide to the Ancient Catechism (Christian Essentials) (p. 19). Lexham Press.

While ideas about God abound in our day, as well as in the church in the ancient world, the Creed sets the record straight from the beginning. Whatever else you think you know about God, we begin by recognising God is relational. While Israel lived with the unspeakable name Yahweh, the “I am who I am”, Christians, through Jesus the Son, come to see that God is a Father and that he has chosen to be known by us in the context of relationship. The title ‘Father’ leads our minds to who He is the Father of: the Son, Jesus. It is through the Son that we have been adopted into God’s family.

We speak to God, and God listens to us, as if we were Jesus. Jesus is God’s child by nature, and we become God’s children by grace. Jesus is born of God; we are adopted. So when we confess that God is “Father,” it is not a theological idea but a confession of the defining relationship of our lives.

Myers, Benjamin . The Apostles’ Creed: A Guide to the Ancient Catechism (Christian Essentials) (p. 20). Lexham Press.

As Christians, we are constituted, which means we have our very being now, as Paul says, “in Christ”. We are not just included as additions to the relationship that God enjoys as Father, Son and Spirit, but we are on the inside of this relationship because we are on the inside of Christ. We have been made Christ’s body, his possession, his people. We have been adopted. It was popular for a while ( and in many situations still is) to ask ‘Jesus into your heart.’ While there might be some defence of this, it is truer to say that we have been invited into the heart of God’s life in Jesus.

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