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Why we Recite The Apostles' Creed Before the Ordinances
April 5, 2019, 10:00 AM

If you joined us last week for worhip, then you noticed that prior to a baptism we stand as a chruch and confess The Apostles Creed together. At FBC Buffalo we do this not only prior to baptism but also prior to the Lord's Supper. Both baptistm and the Lord's Supper are church ordinances as they were established by Christ (Luke 22:19-20 & Matthew 28:19-20).1 At FBC Buffalo we feel that observing the ordinances are great times to review and collectively confess what we believe to be most fundamental to our faith. While not every primary doctirne is addressed directly in the creed2, they are all implied and therefore exceptionally effective in captuing what we believe at FBC Buffalo. Below are three reasons we are convinced at FBC Buffalo that this is an appropriate practice. 

 

1. It's Biblical.

Confessions are biblical. This is illustrated when the Old Testament people of God confessed their faith every morning and evening with the words of Deuteronomy 6:4. The Israelites confessed their faith in the one God when they worshiped Him at the tabernacle and temple in response to His blessing of salvation (Deuteronomy 26:1-11).

We also encounter many confessions throughout the New Testament (i.e. Matthew 16:16; Ephesians 4:4-6 1 Corinthians 15:3-4).Since a great deal of content in the epistles are dedicated to correcting false doctrine, having a common confesion was vital to the teaching of the early church. It is still vital today.

2. It's Beneficial.

Not only are confessions biblical, following the pattern of expressing core beliefs, they are beneficial in many ways. They unify the church (Romans 15:5-6; Philippians 1:27). They provide the church with a clear standard of Truth. They remind us of essential truths (Jude 3). They prevent us from being “tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine” (Ephesians 4:14).4 We are reminded that we as individuals are not alone in this confession. Our kids at FBC Buffalo get to hear and think about the primary doctrines they are confessing with their parents making all of us ready to "give a defense for the hope within us" (1 Peter 3:15).

3. It unites us.

A confession is a chance to publical and collectively declare our core beliefs together as a church. That is a blessing in itself, but further this establishes a common belief that we as a church hold to and what Christians through out the ages have held to. It even unites us with those Christians who streach back to the start of the chruch (Jude 3).The Apostles Creed is a concise way for each part of the FBC Buffalo family to make known to others what we belive together. If one were to visit on a Sunday when an ordinance is observed they would not have to guess at what our church affirms. 

This is a short list and is far from comprehensive. A confession is apologetic.It is a way to share the gospel. It sets us as a chruch apart from many in our community. We don't take our confession of the gospe lightly. We are a confessional church at FBC Buffalo and we confess together: 

I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried;

he descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again;

he ascended into heaven,

he is seated at the right hand of the Father,

and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the Universal Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting.

Amen.

11689 London Baptist Confession. accessed April 4, 2019 http://www.arbca.com/1689-chapter28

2Dave Van Bebber Jr, "The Importance of Preaching the FirstLevel Doctrines of the Christian Faith," in Show Me Why: Thoughts from Missouri Baptists on Defending the Christian Faith, ed. Jeanie Crain (Jefferson Cith, MO: Missouri Baptist Convention Press, 2018).

3Daniel R. Hyde, Welcome to a Reformed Chruch: A Guide for Pilgrims (Orlando, FL: Reformation Trust Pbulishing 2010).

4Ibid.

5Vodie Bachman Jr., Expository Apologetics: Answering Objections with the Power of the Word (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2015).

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