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“It is true, brethren, as you well know, that in our day it is common for people to say, ‘Emphasizing doctrine so much only harms and hinder the kingdom of God, yes, even destroys it.’ Many say, ‘Instead of disputing over doctrine so much, we should much rather be concerned with souls and with leading them to Christ.’

But all who speak this way do not really know what they are saying or what they are doing. As foolish as it would be to scold a farmer for being concerned about sowing good seed and to demand of him simply to be concerned about a good harvest, so foolish it is to scold those who are concerned first and foremost with the doctrine, and to demand of them that they should rather seek to rescue souls. For just as the farmer who wants a good crop must first of all be concerned about good seed, so the church must above all be concerned about right doctrine if it would save souls.”

Rev. Dr. C. F. W. Walther,
“Our Common Task: The Saving of Souls”
(1872)

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Peace to you in Christ.

 

THE ATHANASIAN CREED

Early in the fourth century, a north African pastor named Arius began teaching that Jesus Christ was not truly God.  The Church responded decisively in AD 325 with a statement of faith (The Nicene Creed), which confessed that Jesus is, in fact, true God.  Toward the end of the fifth century, another creed was written that delved further into the mystery of the Trinity.  Though attributed to Athanasius, a fourth-century opponent of Arius, this anonymous creed clearly came at a later stage in the debate.

The Athanasian Creed declares that its teachings concerning the Holy Trinity and our Lord’s incarnation are “the catholic faith.”  In other words, this is what the true Church of all times and all places has confessed.  More than fifteen centuries later, the Church continues to confess this truth, confident that the triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, has given Himself for our salvation. (Lutheran Service Book, Pg. 319)