Dusty Old Creeds and Why We Should Care About Them

Confession of Faith Dusty Old Why Should I Care

From Kenny: This is a guest post written by my good friend, Tim Price. For the next few months, Tim will be guest-posting on my blog about historical theology, particularly in the tradition of Westminster, and why on Earth anybody in our generation should care. The posts will be practical and engaging, not churchy and boring. I hope you all enjoy!

When we find ourselves stumped by different elements of the Bible and our faith, who do we as Christians ask for advice from? Our friends, maybe our parents, usually leave us feeling inadequately informed. Pastors? They’re well equipped to help us, but unfortunately hardly that readily available to us. Our friends, parents, and pastors are great, but they can’t always help.

You ever think about reading an historical confession?

When I think of a confession of faith, my first reaction is, “Whatever dude. Sure it’s important to some people (like ancient crusty men in robes) but I don’t really care.” Like, can’t I just listen to a Tim Keller Podcast?

And when I think about writing about a confession of faith in order to convince modern thinkers that it is still important to us today, I cringe. I cringe because I want you to like me, to be enthralled with what I have to say immediately. And let’s be honest, for the average Facebook article reader, words like “Church Creed” and “Confession” are more than a turn off.

This might have a lot to do with today’s way of thinking skeptically about anything said from a place of authority. Many of us tend not to trust authority. I certainly hate authority, at least subconsciously I do. I feel that we have cultivated and grown into this idea that we are not “free” until we are completely void of authority.

Growing up I was more than rebellious. My two favorite movies being The Gladiator and The Patriot, I somehow came to think it was my purpose in life to overthrow a tyrant or at least fight in an epic battle to the death at some point in my life. However this attitude came about, I know I’m not the only one.

Maybe you don’t think as dramatically as I do, but the point still stands that we disagree with authoritative figures for the sake of it. It is attractive to us. And the attitude has affected our entire worldview.

Of course this plays into reading ancient theological texts written by crusty old men, (who we assume were only writing it to maintain control over a population). It’s not easy, but changing the way I think about authority has changed my view about many things, confessions of faith being one of the few.

For now, I’m just sayin’ that compared to where we get our usual info, it might be worth looking into a document that was prepared by 120 pastor-theologians who spent their entire lives immersed in the Bible so that they might give the Church a solid theological rock to stand on.

What do you think? Click here to tell us.

3 Responses to Dusty Old Creeds and Why We Should Care About Them

  1. Jason Piland August 27, 2013 at 8:19 am #

    I’m reading Carl Truman’s “The Creedal Imerative” right now, a defense of Confessionalism. He makes a great point that every Christian and church has a creed or confession. They all have a way that they interpret and understand the Bible. The problem is that those confessions are not written down–they cannot be critiqued! Reformed confessions are written, public, and available for critique; and boy are they critiqued! As a result of those critiques, we have been able to refine and better our theology. But a church that says “no creed but the Bible” misses out a lot from not having a creed–they miss the opportunity to be challenged, to give a defense, and to find where they are weak. If all Christians could be honest and straightforward about what they confess, I believe that every denomination would learn and grow from the process.

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