Tucked in the middle of the Nicene Creed, we read, “in accordance with the Scriptures.” The Scriptures form the foundation for the entire creed, not just in reference to the resurrection of Christ. The phrase, “in accordance with the Scriptures” comes from 1 Corinthians 15:1–4, where Paul urges the Corinthians to hold fast to his message. He wrote:
Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures.
Paul compels the church to remain focused on the true gospel, firmly rooted in the Scriptures. Likewise, the church fathers gathered to write the Nicene Creed to redeclare the gospel presented in the New Testament. In their time, they faced new ideas emerging about who Christ was—ideas that departed from the Bible’s teaching. Using the phrase, “in accordance with the Scriptures,” they aligned themselves with Paul, calling Christians to stay true to the gospel presented in the Scriptures.
Throughout this week, we will study the Scriptures in depth. Are the Scriptures the very words of God? Can the Scriptures claim authority over our lives? Is the Bible clear? Can we understand the Bible? Do we need the Scriptures? If so, why do we need them? Are the Scriptures enough for us to know and follow God? We will discuss the answers to these questions and dig deeper into the importance of the Scriptures.
Today it can be especially difficult to believe the Scriptures are God’s words; there is a temptation to believe that because men wrote the Bible it cannot consist of God’s words. But God inspired these men to write the Bible. Do you believe God is the author of the Bible? If not, what keeps you from believing Scripture is His Word? If we believe the Scriptures are the very words of God almighty, the only logical response is to join David in saying, God’s words are “more to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold” (Psalm 19:10).
Scripture itself claims to be the very words of God. The Old Testament refrain, “Thus says the Lord,” rings with His authority. In the New Testament, Paul wrote to Timothy, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). God breathed the Scriptures into being. The Holy Spirit inspired ordinary men to write the very words of God.