The following “Apostle’s Creed” is from the early Western Christian Church. The word “catholic” is within the writing. The word “catholic” is not in reference to the Roman Catholic Church, it means the Universal Christian Church. Most heretical churches can be easily exposed if they do not comply to this creed and especially the Nicene Creed.
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:
Who was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell.
The third day He arose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty,
whence He shall come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.
This creed was written at the First Ecumenical Council, held at Nicea, located in the area we now call Turkey. The year was 325 and it was written in response to the Arian heresy that did not believe in the Divinity of Jesus Christ. As in the Athanasian Creed, the word “catholic” written in this creed does not mean the Roman Catholic Church, but the the Universal Christian Church. Here is the creed:
We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father. Through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified. He has spoken through the Prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.
*Originally the theological confession resulting from the first Council of Nicaea (A.D. 325), convened by the emperor Constantine to resolve church divisions related to the Arian controversy. The creed reflects the teachings that the Son is of one substance with the Father. The Nicene Creed recited in churches today resembles the original, but having been revamped at the Council of Constantinople (A.D. 381), the current version is longer and excludes certain original phrases.
*Stanley J. Grenz, David Guretzki & Cherith Fee Nordling, Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999), p 83-84