5 Common Creeds to Memorize
Do your kids know what you believe? When the kids were little, our family adopted the Apostle’s Creed as our statement of faith. David and I learned it by heart, and when Meredith and Connor were able, they memorized it, too. The recitation of the Apostle’s Creed was a weekly part of our Sunday morning liturgy.
The word creed derives from the Latin credo, meaning, “I believe.” The purpose of any form of the Creed is to provide a basic, succinct statement of the faith. Why is this so important? Beliefs drive action. Internalizing these fundamental beliefs will serve your kids throughout life, especially during those dry or daunting times when their faith is challenged like when they move into the college dorm or join the adult workforce.
Consider incorporating these 5 common creeds your kids as part of your homeschool religious memory work:
- Legend has it that under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, each of the 12 Apostles contributed an article to this creed; thus it’s named after them. The Apostles’ Creed is heavily dependent on Christian theological understanding of the New Testament Gospels and some Old Testament prophecy.
- In 325 AD, the elders of the church of Nicaea (now Iznik, Turkey) held a council to refute a doctrinal controversy over the Trinity. They came up with this short creed which has been recited in Sunday worship services (and sometimes sung) as part of the liturgy for nearly 1700 years. Unlike the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed explicitly deals with the divinity of Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
- Possibly written in the early 300’s AD as a precursor to the Nicene Creed, this baptismal creed was recited by new converts of the Jerusalem church. The original version, composed Bishop Cyril was short: “I believe in the Father, and in the Son, and in the Holy Ghost, and in one Baptism of repentance.”
- The Shema is one of two prayers commanded in the Torah, and it’s the only fixed prayer (recited morning and night) of Judaism since ancient times so in that way, it’s a statement of faith just like the Christian creeds. The Shema is taken from three Old Testament passages (Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Deuteronomy 11:13-21; & Numbers 15:37-41), and would be a worthy memory project for Christian kids as well as Jews, especially the first two parts.
- Composed in 1646 at Westminster Abbey for the Church of England, this confession of faith follows reformed theology (Calvinist orthodoxy). There’s a larger and shorter catechism (196 & 107 questions, respectively) delivered in Q & A format like “what is the chief and highest end of man? Man’s chief and highest end is to glorify God and to fully enjoy him forever.”
Perhaps your local church has a statement of faith, or your family has written a personalized creed. You could add that to your homeschool memory work, too.
Download Creeds for Homeschool Memory Work
I’ve put 4 of the 5 confessions in a pdf for you to use in your homeschool memory assignments (the Westminster Confession won’t fit on one page, so if you want that one, you’ll have to find it online). Click here to grab a free copy of all 4 creeds. (NOTE: If you’re already a subscriber, you can find this document in your Bright Mom’s Library).
What does your family believe about God and man? Could your kids answer some simple questions if you asked? Let’s start a conversation in the comments below.