The Apostles' Creed

The Apostles' Creed cover art
Instructor: Multiple Instructors
Lessons: 6
Forums: 6
Discipline: Theology
Course Group: Basic Christian Doctrine

There are many denominations, divisions and theological disputes in the modern church. But despite these types of disunity, there is a common core of belief that all faithful Christians have affirmed throughout history. And for almost two millennia, this core of belief has been summarized in the Apostles' Creed. This series explains the history and use of the Apostles' Creed, as well as the details and significance of each of its articles of faith.

Course Goals:

  • Introduce viewers to the history and value of the Apostles' Creed.
  • Explain each of the doctrines listed in the Apostles' Creed.
  • Demonstrate the relevance of these doctrines to the modern church.

84 min.

Lesson 1: The Articles of Faith

This lesson looks at the Apostles' Creed as a summary of the articles or doctrines that must be affirmed by all those who would call themselves "Christian." It speaks of the history of the Creed, provides an overview of its statements, and focuses on the importance of its doctrines for today.
54 min.

Forum 1: The Articles of Faith

A companion video to lesson 1 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Why should we pay attention to a document like the Apostles' Creed?
  • Doesn't a focus on creeds somehow challenge our commitment to Scripture as our only absolute standard of truth?
  • Why was only one creed called the Apostles' Creed?
  • Why was it important for the early church to summarize the teachings of the New Testament in a simple document like the 
Apostles' Creed?
  • Why did the early church think it was valuable to provide a
systematic way of thinking about doctrine?
  • Why should modern Christians use an ancient creed instead of writing their own?
  • Why does the creed place such a strong emphasis on the doctrine of God? What's so critical about this doctrine?
  • Does our doctrine of God really affect how we live? What practical differences do our beliefs about God actually make in our lives?
  • Where does the Bible teach the doctrine of the Trinity?
  • Why did the early church concentrate so much attention on the doctrine of the Trinity?
  • What are the logical relationships among the various systematic teachings of the creed? How do they all fit together?
  • Why does the creed only mention personal salvation after going through so many other biblical teachings?
  • How does the Apostles' Creed demonstrate that early Christians believed in the theological unity of the Scriptures?
  • How can Christians work toward the kind of doctrinal purity we find in the Apostles' Creed without sacrificing its level of doctrinal unity?
54 min.

Forum 1: The Articles of Faith

A companion video to lesson 1 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Why should we pay attention to a document like the Apostles' Creed?
  • Doesn't a focus on creeds somehow challenge our commitment to Scripture as our only absolute standard of truth?
  • Why was only one creed called the Apostles' Creed?
  • Why was it important for the early church to summarize the teachings of the New Testament in a simple document like the 
Apostles' Creed?
  • Why did the early church think it was valuable to provide a
systematic way of thinking about doctrine?
  • Why should modern Christians use an ancient creed instead of writing their own?
  • Why does the creed place such a strong emphasis on the doctrine of God? What's so critical about this doctrine?
  • Does our doctrine of God really affect how we live? What practical differences do our beliefs about God actually make in our lives?
  • Where does the Bible teach the doctrine of the Trinity?
  • Why did the early church concentrate so much attention on the doctrine of the Trinity?
  • What are the logical relationships among the various systematic teachings of the creed? How do they all fit together?
  • Why does the creed only mention personal salvation after going through so many other biblical teachings?
  • How does the Apostles' Creed demonstrate that early Christians believed in the theological unity of the Scriptures?
  • How can Christians work toward the kind of doctrinal purity we find in the Apostles' Creed without sacrificing its level of doctrinal unity?
100 min.

Lesson 2: God the Father

This lesson addresses the basic idea of God, looking at some general things the Bible teaches about his existence and nature. It focuses on the phrase "Father Almighty," paying attention to some distinctive qualities of the first person of the Trinity. And it explores the Father's role as the Maker, or creator, of everything that exists.
100 min.

Lesson 2: God the Father

This lesson addresses the basic idea of God, looking at some general things the Bible teaches about his existence and nature. It focuses on the phrase "Father Almighty," paying attention to some distinctive qualities of the first person of the Trinity. And it explores the Father's role as the Maker, or creator, of everything that exists.
81 min.

Forum 2: God the Father

A companion video to lesson 2 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Can Scripture teach us reliable truths about God, or is its human language insufficient for this task?
  • Do our beliefs about God have any practical relevance for followers of Christ?
  • Do all people have some beliefs about God that are so important that they influence nearly everything else they believe?
  • Why are human beings prone to turn away from God?
  • Do people of other religions actually worship the same God that Christians worship?
  • What are some of the common ways the doctrine of the Trinity has been misunderstood?
  • Does the Father's authority mean that he forces his will on the Son and the Holy Spirit?
  • In what ways is God similar to and different from our earthly, human fathers?
  • What are some practical applications that human fathers can draw from God's fatherhood?
  • How can we encourage Christians that have had poor fathers to view God's fatherhood in a positive light?
  • What kinds of implications does God's fatherhood have for pastoral ministry?
  • How can we be sure that God's purposes for us will actually be fulfilled?
  • How can an unchangeable God change his mind?
  • What is the ultimate goal of humanity's redemption?
  • What are the main Evangelical interpretations of the days of creation in Genesis chapter 1?
  • How can people with the same basic commitments to the authority and infallibility of Scripture read Genesis chapter 1 in such different ways?
  • What practical implications can we draw from the fact that the creation reflects God's goodness?
  • How should Christians feel about the fact that God has ultimate authority over everything?
81 min.

Forum 2: God the Father

A companion video to lesson 2 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Can Scripture teach us reliable truths about God, or is its human language insufficient for this task?
  • Do our beliefs about God have any practical relevance for followers of Christ?
  • Do all people have some beliefs about God that are so important that they influence nearly everything else they believe?
  • Why are human beings prone to turn away from God?
  • Do people of other religions actually worship the same God that Christians worship?
  • What are some of the common ways the doctrine of the Trinity has been misunderstood?
  • Does the Father's authority mean that he forces his will on the Son and the Holy Spirit?
  • In what ways is God similar to and different from our earthly, human fathers?
  • What are some practical applications that human fathers can draw from God's fatherhood?
  • How can we encourage Christians that have had poor fathers to view God's fatherhood in a positive light?
  • What kinds of implications does God's fatherhood have for pastoral ministry?
  • How can we be sure that God's purposes for us will actually be fulfilled?
  • How can an unchangeable God change his mind?
  • What is the ultimate goal of humanity's redemption?
  • What are the main Evangelical interpretations of the days of creation in Genesis chapter 1?
  • How can people with the same basic commitments to the authority and infallibility of Scripture read Genesis chapter 1 in such different ways?
  • What practical implications can we draw from the fact that the creation reflects God's goodness?
  • How should Christians feel about the fact that God has ultimate authority over everything?
95 min.

Lesson 3: Jesus Christ

This lesson speaks of the divinity of Jesus Christ, looking at things like the nature of his divinity, and his relationship to the other members of the Trinity. It looks at his humanity, and discusses the relationship between his divine and human natures. And it talks about his work both during and after his earthly ministry.
95 min.

Lesson 3: Jesus Christ

This lesson speaks of the divinity of Jesus Christ, looking at things like the nature of his divinity, and his relationship to the other members of the Trinity. It looks at his humanity, and discusses the relationship between his divine and human natures. And it talks about his work both during and after his earthly ministry.
97 min.

Forum 3: Jesus Christ

A companion video to lesson 3 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • How important is the doctrine of Christ's divinity?
  • Is Jesus' sonship different from ours as children of God?
  • How can Jesus be God and still subject to the Father's authority?
  • Why should we think that the New Testament Greek word kurios refers to anything more than earthly human authority and honor, even when it is applied to Jesus?
  • Does Jesus' miraculous conception make him less human?
  • What did the Old Testament say about who the Messiah would be?
  • According to the Old Testament, what was the Messiah expected to do?
  • How can God be both free in his sovereignty and bound by his covenants?
  • How is Jesus' role as Christ similar to Adam's role as the first human being?
  • How could Jesus be both fully human and fully divine?
  • How did the incarnation make the Son of God a more effective high priest?
  • How did Christ's death atone for sin?
  • What is the relationship between Jesus' atonement and the Old Testament sacrifices?
  • Why is the resurrection of Jesus an indispensable part of the gospel message?
  • What work is Jesus doing in heaven right now?
  • How important is the doctrine of the last judgment?
97 min.

Forum 3: Jesus Christ

A companion video to lesson 3 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • How important is the doctrine of Christ's divinity?
  • Is Jesus' sonship different from ours as children of God?
  • How can Jesus be God and still subject to the Father's authority?
  • Why should we think that the New Testament Greek word kurios refers to anything more than earthly human authority and honor, even when it is applied to Jesus?
  • Does Jesus' miraculous conception make him less human?
  • What did the Old Testament say about who the Messiah would be?
  • According to the Old Testament, what was the Messiah expected to do?
  • How can God be both free in his sovereignty and bound by his covenants?
  • How is Jesus' role as Christ similar to Adam's role as the first human being?
  • How could Jesus be both fully human and fully divine?
  • How did the incarnation make the Son of God a more effective high priest?
  • How did Christ's death atone for sin?
  • What is the relationship between Jesus' atonement and the Old Testament sacrifices?
  • Why is the resurrection of Jesus an indispensable part of the gospel message?
  • What work is Jesus doing in heaven right now?
  • How important is the doctrine of the last judgment?
94 min.

Lesson 4: The Holy Spirit

This lesson talks about the Holy Spirit's divinity, his full membership in the Godhead. It considers his personhood, noting that the Holy Spirit is a true person and not simply a divine force. And it explores the work that the Holy Spirit did in the past, and that he continues to do today.
64 min.

Forum 4: The Holy Spirit

A companion video to lesson 4 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Has the church always affirmed that the Holy Spirit is an equal member of the Trinity?
  • Does Scripture demonstrate that the Holy Spirit is fully God?
  • What are some aspects of the Holy Spirit's divine work that are most beneficial to believers?
  • Do Christians benefit from the fact that the Holy Spirit is a person?
  • What are some personal and pastoral implications of the Holy Spirit's indwelling?
  • What are we supposed to do with our spiritual gifts?
  • Do unbelievers benefit from being involved in the life of the church?
  • What kinds of truth does the Holy Spirit reveal through general revelation?
  • How does illumination affect our understanding of God's revelation?
  • What role does inward leading play in a Christian's life?
  • How can we verify the illumination and inward leading we think we've received?
  • How should we respond to the Holy Spirit in our worship and prayers?
64 min.

Forum 4: The Holy Spirit

A companion video to lesson 4 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Has the church always affirmed that the Holy Spirit is an equal member of the Trinity?
  • Does Scripture demonstrate that the Holy Spirit is fully God?
  • What are some aspects of the Holy Spirit's divine work that are most beneficial to believers?
  • Do Christians benefit from the fact that the Holy Spirit is a person?
  • What are some personal and pastoral implications of the Holy Spirit's indwelling?
  • What are we supposed to do with our spiritual gifts?
  • Do unbelievers benefit from being involved in the life of the church?
  • What kinds of truth does the Holy Spirit reveal through general revelation?
  • How does illumination affect our understanding of God's revelation?
  • What role does inward leading play in a Christian's life?
  • How can we verify the illumination and inward leading we think we've received?
  • How should we respond to the Holy Spirit in our worship and prayers?
98 min.

Lesson 5: The Church

This lesson looks at the divine sanction of the church, and at the facts that the church is holy, catholic or universal, and a communion.
96 min.

Forum 5: The Church

A companion video to lesson 5 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • What is the church?
  • Why is it helpful to consider the church's Old Testament background?
  • How similar were God's purposes for the Old Testament church and the New Testament church?
  • How is the Old Testament church's relationship to Christ similar to the New Testament church's relationship to Christ?
  • Why do Christians need the church?
  • What is God's holiness?
  • What does the church's identity as a kingdom of priests and a holy nation imply about its modern obligations?
  • What is the proper role of ordained ministers in the church?
  • How can pastors adapt their teaching to audiences that include unbelievers?
  • What are some responsible applications we can draw from our beliefs about the visible and invisible church?
  • How should the church treat the unbelieving world?
  • When should our charitable giving remain with those in the church, and when should it go to people outside the church?
  • What are some practical ways that churches can carry out the Great Commission?
  • Can a well-meaning person be saved without coming to faith in Christ?
  • What does the Bible say should be our attitude toward the suffering and persecution we endure?
  • What does it mean to be "in Christ"?
  • What are some of the benefits of union with Christ?
  • Should each means of grace be administered every time the church gathers for worship?
  • How can we promote unity and reconciliation between believers?
96 min.

Forum 5: The Church

A companion video to lesson 5 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • What is the church?
  • Why is it helpful to consider the church's Old Testament background?
  • How similar were God's purposes for the Old Testament church and the New Testament church?
  • How is the Old Testament church's relationship to Christ similar to the New Testament church's relationship to Christ?
  • Why do Christians need the church?
  • What is God's holiness?
  • What does the church's identity as a kingdom of priests and a holy nation imply about its modern obligations?
  • What is the proper role of ordained ministers in the church?
  • How can pastors adapt their teaching to audiences that include unbelievers?
  • What are some responsible applications we can draw from our beliefs about the visible and invisible church?
  • How should the church treat the unbelieving world?
  • When should our charitable giving remain with those in the church, and when should it go to people outside the church?
  • What are some practical ways that churches can carry out the Great Commission?
  • Can a well-meaning person be saved without coming to faith in Christ?
  • What does the Bible say should be our attitude toward the suffering and persecution we endure?
  • What does it mean to be "in Christ"?
  • What are some of the benefits of union with Christ?
  • Should each means of grace be administered every time the church gathers for worship?
  • How can we promote unity and reconciliation between believers?
101 min.

Lesson 6: Salvation

This discussion of salvation addresses the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the nature of everlasting life.
109 min.

Forum 6: Salvation

A companion video to lesson 6 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Why do fallen human beings need a Savior?
  • Why did Adam's fall into sin have such terrible consequences for humanity and creation?
  • What problem has sin created in our relationship with God?
  • Why is Jesus the only one that can save us?
  • Is Jesus the loving God who saves us from the Father's wrath?
  • Were people saved the same way in both the Old Testament and the New Testament?
  • What benefits do we receive as a result of God's forgiveness?
  • If we can be forgiven just because we ask, does that cheapen grace?
  • Are there any benefits to modern Christians if we regularly repent of and confess our sins?
  • What will our glorified bodies be like?
  • When our souls are in heaven and our bodies are in the grave, are we in two places at the same time?
  • Did the Old Testament saints believe in a future resurrection?
  • What is eternal life?
  • When does eternal life begin?
  • What's the difference between everlasting life and eternal existence?
  • What kinds of blessings do we receive as a result of Jesus' resurrection?
  • What might our life in heaven be like?
  • What will the new heavens and new earth be like?
  • How should we respond to God's gift of salvation?
109 min.

Forum 6: Salvation

A companion video to lesson 6 of the same series that asks the following questions:
  • Why do fallen human beings need a Savior?
  • Why did Adam's fall into sin have such terrible consequences for humanity and creation?
  • What problem has sin created in our relationship with God?
  • Why is Jesus the only one that can save us?
  • Is Jesus the loving God who saves us from the Father's wrath?
  • Were people saved the same way in both the Old Testament and the New Testament?
  • What benefits do we receive as a result of God's forgiveness?
  • If we can be forgiven just because we ask, does that cheapen grace?
  • Are there any benefits to modern Christians if we regularly repent of and confess our sins?
  • What will our glorified bodies be like?
  • When our souls are in heaven and our bodies are in the grave, are we in two places at the same time?
  • Did the Old Testament saints believe in a future resurrection?
  • What is eternal life?
  • When does eternal life begin?
  • What's the difference between everlasting life and eternal existence?
  • What kinds of blessings do we receive as a result of Jesus' resurrection?
  • What might our life in heaven be like?
  • What will the new heavens and new earth be like?
  • How should we respond to God's gift of salvation?