Know the Creeds and Councils

Know the Creeds and Councils

Justin S. Holcomb
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  • 9780310132318
  • Digital Enhanced Edition
  • Desktop, iOS, Android
  • April 29, 2014

  • Theology, Church History

About the Authors

Justin S. Holcomb

Justin S. Holcomb

Ph.D., Emory University

Justin S. Holcomb is an Episcopal priest and a professor of theology and Christian thought at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Reformed Theological Seminary. He previously taught at the University of Virginia and Emory University. He has authored, co-authored, and edited several books, including On the Grace of God, Know the Heretics, and Know the Creeds and Councils, on which this course is based. He lives with his wife and daughters in Orlando, Florida.


In every generation, the Christian church must interpret and restate its bedrock beliefs, answering the challenges and concerns of the day. This accessible overview walks readers through centuries of creeds, councils, catechisms, and confessions—not with a dry focus on dates and places, but with an emphasis on the living tradition of Christian belief and why it matters for our lives today.

As a part of the KNOW series, Know the Creeds and Councils is designed for personal study or classroom use, but also for small groups and Sunday schools wanting to more deeply understand the foundations of the faith..

Each chapter covers a key statement of faith and includes a discussion of its historical context, a simple explanation of the statement’s content and key points, reflections on contemporary and ongoing relevance, and discussion questions.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Thomas C. Oden

  • Acknowledgments

  • Introduction: What Are Creeds, Confessions, Catechisms, and Councils?

  • 1. Apostles’ Creed (ca. 140)

  • 2. Council of Nicaea and the Nicene Creed (325)

  • 3. Councils of Ephesus (431, 449, 475)

  • 4. Council of Chalcedon (451)

  • 5. Athanasian Creed (Late 400s to Early 500s)

  • 6. Councils of Constantinople (381, 553, 681)

  • 7. Councils of Carthage and Orange (419 and 529)

  • 8. Council of Trent (1545 – 63)

  • 9. Heidelberg Catechism (1563)

  • 10. Thirty-nine Articles of Religion (1563)

  • 11. Westminster Confession of Faith (1646)

  • 12. Second Vatican Council (1962 – 65)

  • 13. Modern Confessions: Lausanne Covenant (1974) and Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy (1978)

  • Conclusion

  • Notes


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