Do you know why today’s cults and mega-churches appear to promote a certain disdain towards traditional and historical Christianity? By convincing their followers to embrace their version of Christianity, (which is not historical Christianity), they can get away with anything. By severing the historic Christian faith and conditioning many to accept their ‘faith-filled’ environments and embrace their moralistic therapeutic ‘deity’, no one can hold them accountable to the things they say.
Over the last 2000 years the church has combated errors, heresies and false teachers by subscribing to what we call the ABCD’s. It has only been in the last fifty years that church leaders have failed to address the mass influx of false teachers with their entertainment-driven mega-circuses. As a result we are seeing many false teachers begin to band together, deliberately suppressing knowledge of the historical Christian faith, as they flood Christian bookstores, bookshelves and media with their false gospel, false Jesus, and false Spirit – ultimately deceiving many with a false hope.
We are publishing this list on Church Watch to demonstrate that what we represent is not new. Our hope is to demonstrate the way the true church has been conducting itself for the last 2000 years. Our contributors come from different church denominations and backgrounds and what we hold in common are the ABCD‘s of the historical church ‘and the faith once delivered’ – unlike many of today’s contemporary ‘churches’:
Our prayer is that you grow stronger in the faith as you learn from the early Church fathers, teachers and prophets of the faith who upheld God’s Word so faithfully. The earliest creed is found in the bible to defend the Christian faith:
“Now, brothers and sisters, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.
For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance:
that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve.
After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters
at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep.
Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles,
and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.”
1 Corinthians 15:1-8
Since then, the church is called to ‘devote themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer’ – to produce these amazing theological works. And they have not deviated with the writings of God’s prophets and Christ’s apostles bearing witness for the last 2000 years that God and His Word are true.
|NAME OF A/B/C/D|
|The Apostles Creed||N/A|
|The Nicene Creed||325 AD|
|The Athanasian Creed||500 AD|
|The Definition of the Council of Chalcedon||451 AD|
|The Canons of the Council of Orange||529 AD|
|The Anathemas of the Second Council of Constantinople||553 AD|
|The Augsberg Confession||1530 AD|
|The Apology of the Augsberg Confession||1531 AD|
|The Smalcald Articles||1537 AD|
|The Belgic Confessions||1561 AD||
|The Second Helvetic Confession (aka Second Confession of Basel)||1562
|The Heidelberg Catechism||1563 AD|
|The Thirty-nine Articles||1571 AD||N/A|
|The Scots Confession||1560 AD|
|The Book of Concord||1580 AD|
|The Harmony of the Confessions of Faith||1581 AD|
|The Irish Articles of Religion||1615 AD||N/A|
|The Canons of Dort||1618-19 AD|
|The Westminster Confession||1646-49 AD|
|Baptist Confession of Faith||1689 AD|
|The Theological Declaration of Barmen||1934 AD|
Essentially, because we are stating that the historic Christian faith is not represented in the cults and pseudo-Christian churches today, we predict that these churches will continue in their attempt to appear Christian by starting to associate themselves with more traditional and historical Christianity. Liberal/Emergent churches have done exactly this to give the false impression they are of the historic Christian faith as they continue to impose modern and postmodern values, virtues and ideals onto historical texts.
Do not be deceived – if a leopard cannot change its spots, neither can cults and false teachers. All they can do is shed their snakeskins – or use sheepskins to hide their true nature. We pray this resource helps assist in your defence and growth in discernment and the Christian faith.
What I found interesting is the gap between the ancient creeds and the Reformation creeds and other post-Reformation works. To the casual observer, the Church endured 1,000 years of darkness but, of course, we know that God was working and building His church all throughout that period of time. This is especially interesting in light of the upcoming 500-year anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 Theses.
To God be the Glory.
In the Chalcedonian “definition” I like the rendering for theotokos as “God-bearer”, as opposed to Schaff’s “Mother of God.”