A Congregation of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church

The Usefulness of Creeds and Confessions

As a young Christian I was starved for a historical grounding of our faith. After college I read J.I. Packer’s book, Knowing God, with a group of singles from my church. Somewhere in there the Westminster Confession of Faith was mentioned and a seed was planted in my mind. Years later, while on staff of Cru, we found ourselves living in the Atlanta, Georgia area. Having heard of the PCA and realizing that we just didn’t fit into the SBC culture, we visited the local PCA church (Covenant Presbyterian in Fayetteville, Georgia). I was pleasantly surprised by the orderly and reverent worship service which included a recitation of the Apostle’s Creed.

As we continued to attend and ask questions, imagine my surprise when I asked about their statement of faith. I was given a book – The Westminster Confession of Faith along with the Larger and Shorter Catechisms. Up to this point we had been attending evangelical churches with a standard one-page statement of faith listing maybe nine or ten doctrinal points. I was intrigued and found myself poring over it in the days and weeks that followed. As I learned the basic doctrines of reformed theology coupled with a historical grounding of the Protestant Reformation (including Calvin and Luther), it wasn’t long before I began exploring pastoral ministry.

Some complain that creeds and confessions are dry and boring. Furthermore, they argue that they have no place in the church today. I disagree.

Dr. Keith Mathison of Ligonier Ministries and Reformation Bible College in Florida has written a helpful piece entitled, “5 Things You Should Know about Creeds.” I encourage you to read this brief piece. Click the link below:

5 Things You Should Know About Creeds

For further study on this topic I commend Carl Trueman’s work, The Creedal Imperative and J.V. Fesko’s work, The Need for Creeds Today