Reformation Lutheran Church A Congregation of the ELCA

The Nicene Creed (or Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed)

The Nicene Creed was written by the early Church and adopted (in a slightly different version) by the Church Council at Nica in AD 325 and appears in its present form by the Council at Chalcedon in AD 451. It has remained in use since that time. It is an essential part of the doctrine and liturgy of the Lutheran and Episcopal Churches. The Episcopal Church requires its usage at every Eucharist on Sundays and Major Feasts (except when the Apostles' Creed is used as the Baptismal Creed). The Lutheran Church gives the option of the Apostles' Creed or the Nicene Creed, suggesting the Nicene Creed as the more festive or solemn of the two.

The first translation below, recently done by the ecumenical English Language Liturgical Commission (ELLC), is truer to Greek original than the second translation below. The words, "and the Son'' (filioque in Latin), later added in the West, are included in brackets.

The second translation below, done by the International Consultation on English Texts (ICET) in the 1970s, is printed in the Lutheran Book of Worship and The Book of Common Prayer (Episcopal).

The Episcopal Church, in its 1994 General Convention, has approved the omission of the filioque beginning with the publication of a new Book of Common Prayer, which will likely take place sometime in the 21st Century (no sooner than 2006). The Lutheran and Episcopal churches currently use the Creed with the filioque, the form in which they inherited it from the Western Catholic tradition. The (Eastern) Orthodox Church has never used the filioque.


The Nicene Creed, ELLC Translation

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,
was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary
and became truly human.
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 [and the Son],
who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified,
who 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.


The Nicene Creed, ICET Translation

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 and the Son.
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.