What is the Church? The Nicene Creed Perspective

By Randall Hardman

The Nicene Creed gives us a four, very specific keynotes in regards to the Church: One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. I want to take a quick minute and meditate on what these keynotes mean for us. We are not reciting arbitrarily chosen adjectives about the definition and nature of the Church. We are reciting words specifically chosen to delineate what the Church has been, is, and will continue to be. The Nicene Creed is not a temporal statement of belief; it is a timeless proclamation of the Gospel.

One – The use of the term “one” in reference to the Church does not deny various ecclesiastical groups or denominations, but it speaks of something higher and greater: the unity of the Church into one, distinct body. While there are minor issues at stake in theological and governmental differences, the overall Church is in agreement on certain essentials that make up its unity.

Holy – It is in this sense that we are “set apart” for God. It is not necessarily morality and goodness that makes us holy; it is forgiveness and redemption. Justification, not action, is the source of holiness. This act of making someone holy is completely and totally on the part of God and has nothing to do with us…


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