The Creed Part 2: I believe in Jesus Christ
‘I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son our Lord’, begins the second and longest section of the Christian creed. Your lord is the person you obey, so to say the creed a person must commit to obey, follow and trust Jesus.
We confess that Jesus was 100% God and 100% man when we say, ‘who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary’. Jesus is God—worthy of worship, God the Son who alone can reveal the Father to us. He is human—a perfect example and representative of us.
The creed moves straight from Jesus’ birth to his death because his death is central. Jesus was perfect and he died for us and our sins. We declare that his death was an historical fact, ‘suffered under Pontius Pilate’. It was extreme physical torment ‘crucified, dead, and buried.’ His spirit went to the place of the dead, ‘he descended to the dead.’ “The wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23), and Jesus suffered that for us.
If Jesus stayed dead, the Christian faith is empty. But Jesus completely paid for sin, he completely defeated death and he guarantees our resurrection to eternal life by his resurrection. Because he lives he can now walk with us and we can have fellowship with him. Because he rose we can declare ‘The third day he rose again from the dead.’
Jesus physically moved up vertically as a sign that he would no longer being appearing to the disciples. He ‘ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty’. At the Father’s side Jesus rules, he will defeat every enemy, and he represents us before God.
The final declaration about Jesus is that there is a great day coming, ‘from there he shall come to judge the living and the dead.’ There are over 300 references to the return in the New Testament, this is no minor teaching. Jesus will return at a time we do not expect so we need to be ready.