Monday, November 03, 2008
David deSilva on the Nicene Creed
In the Sacramental Life, David deSilva offers this reflection in the Nicene Creed:
"When we were baptized, we became part of the larger story of a community of faith, a story passed on in summary form in the Nicene Creed. This creed gives us our foundational story line, which in turn gives us our identity, our sense of direction and our orientation to the world - if we allow it! Like the confessionof sin, the creed uses we forms. It is an affirmation of our commitment to a story that we received from a community of faith that has struggled to live in line with this story across the millennia. Ours is not a private faith, nor is the story one that we are free to alter to suit our liking. Indeed, the Nicene Creed exists largely as a result of the church's working out the nonnegotiable contours of the story of God's interventions in God's world in response to some independent thinkers - who would come to be known as "heretics" - whose innovations were viewed as unhelpful tampering with that story. The early church leaders who wrestled with the formulation of the creed did so not only out of a desire to get the story and the characters straight. They also did so out of a knowledge that the story we tell about God is the starting point for living out our lives before him and in line with him."