Our English word core is comes from the Latin word for heart. We use it to refer to that which is most central. The Christian faith has a core, essentials, without which one does not have a Christian faith but what are those irreducible core Christian convictions? We summarize our most basic convictions in ancient creeds such as the Nicene-Constantinopolitan (325, 381 AD) and the Apostles’ Creed, which developed gradually from the 2nd through the 6th centuries. Those core convictions are also summarized in the Definition of Chalcedon (451 AD) and the Athanasian Creed, which, though not actually written by Athanasius, is a wonderfully summary of the ecumenical or catholic (i.e., universal) doctrines of the Trinity and Christ. We call these the catholic (universal) creeds. Mike Horton has published a new book surveying the essential doctrines of the Christian faith, Core Christianity: Finding Yourself In God’s Story.
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