Christians; what does a person have to believe/profess

Christians; what does a person have to believe/profess to be allowed or accepted into the church you belong to? In short, what is the bedrock set of beliefs that a convert into your particular church must accept and profess to be a member in good standing? Links are fine, lists are better, explanations preferred. lol So, do you have to accept certain sacraments as literal sacraments, do you have to hold a certain belief about the elements in a communion service, etc… I know it may not be so straightforward, but I’m interested in hearing actual opinions from church members.

Actual Opinions?:shrug:

I feel the need to clarify, so as to show my intent. I’m asking this question in a sincere manner; I have never, and I do mean never, belonged to an organized church. I have no idea what it takes to actually join one, esp. one that would be more liturgical based. I’ve attended many denominations/churches but never joined. I’ve been baptized, I’ve believed my whole life, I’ve studied and read and even have even taught in churches, but never been a member.

Anyone care to share how that works? Do you meet with the pastor? Do you meet with the priest? When you do is there a set of beliefs you are expected to read through and profess? Fill out a form and mail it in? Do the elders of the church question you? How does it work in your congregation/church? I’m truly ignorant. :shrug:

Opinions from people as opposed to websites. As I said, links are fine, but I prefer actual experiences from actual people explained to me by said people. lol

The apostolic faith as articulated in the 3 ecumenical creeds and Lutheran confessions; the absolute belief in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist and life-giving salvation in the Sacraments.

For Lutherans;

So, it would be up to a person to read the info, and make a decision and then go to the pastor/priest of a Lutheran Church and profess it to them?

The 3 creeds:**The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.

And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen.

The Nicene Creed

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds, God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father; by whom all things were made; who for us men, and for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, and was made man, and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again with glory to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.

And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father and the Son; who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified; who spake by the Prophets. And I believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.

The Athanasian Creed

Written against the Arians.

Whosoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the catholic faith. Which faith except every one do keep whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.

And the catholic faith is this, that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity; Neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Substance. For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son, and another of the Holy Ghost. But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost is all one: the glory equal, the majesty coeternal. Such as the Father is, such is the Son, and such is the Holy Ghost. The Father uncreated, the Son uncreated, and the Holy Ghost uncreated. The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible, and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible. The Father eternal, the Son eternal, and the Holy Ghost eternal. And yet they are not three Eternals, but one Eternal. As there are not three Uncreated nor three Incomprehensibles, but one Uncreated and one Incomprehensible. So likewise the Father is almighty, the Son almighty, and the Holy Ghost almighty. And yet they are not three Almighties, but one Almighty. So the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is God. And yet they are not three Gods, but one God. So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord, and the Holy Ghost Lord. And yet not three Lords, but one Lord. For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity to acknowledge every Person by Himself to be God and Lord, So are we forbidden by the catholic religion to say, There be three Gods, or three Lords.

The Father is made of none: neither created nor begotten. The Son is of the Father alone; not made, nor created, but begotten. The Holy Ghost is of the Father and of the Son: neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding. So there is one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons; one Holy Ghost, not three Holy Ghosts. And in this Trinity none is before or after other; none is greater or less than another; But the whole three Persons are coeternal together, and coequal: so that in all things, as is aforesaid, the Unity in Trinity and the Trinity in Unity is to be worshiped. He, therefore, that will be saved must thus think of the Trinity.

Furthermore, it is necessary to everlasting salvation that he also believe faithfully the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. For the right faith is, that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man; God of the Substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and Man of the substance of His mother, born in the world; Perfect God and perfect Man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting. Equal to the Father as touching His Godhead, and inferior to the Father as touching His manhood; Who, although He be God and Man, yet He is not two, but one Christ: One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking the manhood into God; One altogether; not by confusion of Substance, but by unity of Person. For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man, so God and Man is one Christ; Who suffered for our salvation; descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead; He ascended into heaven; He sitteth on the right hand of the Father, God Almighty; from whence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead. At whose coming all men shall rise again with their bodies, and shall give an account of their own works. And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting; and they that have done evil, into everlasting fire. This is the catholic faith; which except a man believe faithfully and firmly, he cannot be saved.

The Lutheran Confessions; Is this the Book on Concord? You would need to read it, and agree to all that is in it?

Thanks for posting the entire text of the Creeds, Kliska. I think the majority of Christians subscribe to the ecumenical creeds; the basic foundation of Christianity. I welcome all who believe these Creeds to join me in holy Communion. However, I also believe that the Augsburg Confession is the correct interpretation of the Catholic faith; you have provided a link :slight_smile:

Has to confess faith in the lord Jesus Christ specifically defined by the canons and creeds of the seven eccumenical councils, the fathers of the church and the bible.

The most basic confession would be the Nicene creed.

Do modern lutherans accept the seven eccumenical councils?

In order to be Catholic one must believe all that the Catholic Church teaches and holds to be true.


Dumb question, but is there a certain resource you prefer to look at to see the decrees of the seven ecumenical councils?

So, to read the whole CCC and agree with each point? Or, go through RCIA and agree with all that is taught?

Good question. Maybe Jon can help us.

Modern Lutheran and Catholic theologians/ bishops produced a statement of faith [From Conflict to Communion] that may be or lead to an ecumenical council. Lutherans are proposing inter-communion with Catholics in 2017.

I was unaware I posed a question there nor am I sure what is ‘dumb’ about it. I have no preferred version of any of the translations of the canons or creeds of the councils seeming as I am no expert on such things.

I ask because in the Orthodox lutheran exchanges between Tubingin and Constantinople they were pretty adament about accepting all the councils.

I think you misunderstand; I am the one asking the question that might appear dumb. :stuck_out_tongue: I’m not just asking for a preference of version, but in short, how does one study the canons and creeds of the councils? Anyone can answer.

Found a brief list of the 7. Theopedia lists these seven and a summary, noting that most protestants that disagree with any may disagree with the last of the 7. If anyone knows of a really good book or resource on the 7 I’d love to hear about it.

  1. First Council of Nicaea, (325): affirmed that Jesus is truly God and equal to the Father; repudiated Arianism, adopted the Nicene Creed.

  2. First Council of Constantinople, (381): affirmed that Jesus was perfectly man against the Apollinarians; revised the Nicene Creed into its present form which is used in the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox churches; prohibited any further alteration of the Creed without the assent of an Ecumenical Council.

  3. Council of Ephesus, (431): affirmed that Jesus is one person against Nestorianism; proclaimed the Virgin Mary as the Mother of God, and also condemned Pelagianism.

  4. Council of Chalcedon, (451): affirmed that in Jesus there are two distinct natures in one person that are hypostatically united “without confusion, change, division or separation”; repudiated the Eutychianism and Monophysitism; adopted the Chalcedonian Creed.

  5. Second Council of Constantinople, (553): reaffirmed decisions and doctrines explicated by previous Councils, condemned new Arian, Nestorian, and Monophysite writings.

  6. Third Council of Constantinople, (680–681): asserted that Jesus had both a divine and human will; repudiated Monothelitism.

  7. Second Council of Nicaea, (787); restoration of the veneration of icons and end of the first iconoclasm. It is rejected by some Protestant denominations, who instead prefer the Council of Hieria (754), which had also described itself as the Seventh Ecumenical Council and had condemned the veneration of icons.

Well I suppose identifiying the councils helps. Nicea, Constantinople, Ephesus, Chalcedon, Constantinople 2, Constantinople 3, then Nicea 2.

There are resources dedicated to the sources for these which are numerous and can be easily found.

heres one I found.

The Nicene Creed would be a place to start. TEC is a Creedal Church.


Are there any more specifics that you’d have to hold to to join TEC? Say that one agrees with the 3 ecumenical creeds, are there any other guidelines to what MUST be believed, say about any of the sacraments? As stated before, any links are fine too! :wink:

in the section “What We Believe” :slight_smile:

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