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The Nicene Creed

N.B. The three versions are not strict translations of each other. You need to have the Arial Unicode MS font installed to view the Classical Greek text.

Notes
GreekLatinEnglish
Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα Θεὸν Πατέρα παντοκράτορα, ποιητὴν οὐρανοῦ καὶ γῆς, ὁρατῶν τε πάντων καὶ ἀοράτων. Credo in unum Deum, Patrem Omnipotentem, factorem cæli et terræ, atque visibilium omnium et invisibilium: We believe in One God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, And of all things visible and invisible:
Καὶ εἰς ἕνα Κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν, τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ Θεοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ, τὸν ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς γεννηθέντα πρὸ πάντων τῶν αἰώνων, φῶς ἐκ φωτός, Θεὸν ἀληθινὸν ἐκ Θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ, γεννηθέντα, οὐ ποιηθέντα, ὁμοούσιον τῷ Πατρί‧ δἰ οὗ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο‧ Et in unum Dominum, Jesum Christum, Filium Dei unigenitum, ex Patre natum ante omnia sæcula: Deum de Deo; Lumen de Lumine; Deum verum de Deo vero; Genitum non factum; Consubstantialem Patri; Per quem omnia facta sunt. And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God: Begotten of his Father before all worlds, God of God, Light of Light, Very God of Very God, Begotten, not made, Being of one substance with the Father, By whom all things were made:
Τὸν δἰ ἡμᾶς τοὺς ἀνθρώπους καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν κατελθόντα ἐκ τῶν οὐρανῶν, καὶ σαρκωθέντα ἐκ Πνεύματος Ἁγίου καὶ Μαρίας τῆς Παρθένου, καὶ ἐνανθρωπήσαντα‧ Σταυρωθέντα τε ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν ἐπὶ Ποντίον Πιλάτου, καὶ παθόντα, καὶ ταφέντα‧ Καὶ ἀναστάντα τῇ τρίτῃ ἡμέρᾳ, κατὰ τὰς γραφάς‧ Καὶ ἀνελθόντα εἰς τοὺς οὐρανοὺς καὶ καθεζόμενον ἐκ δεξιῶν τοῦ Πατρός, Καὶ πάλιν ἐρχόμενον μετὰ δόξης κρῖναι ζῶντας καὶ νεκρούς‧ οὗ τῆς βασιλείας οὐκ ἔσται τέλος. Qui propter nos homines, et propter nostram salutem, descendit de cælis; Et incarnatus est de Spiritu Santo, ex Maria Virgine, Et homo factus est; Crucifixus etiam pro nobis sub Pontio Pilato. Passus et sepultus est; Et resurrexit tertia die, secundum scripturas; et ascendit in cælum: Et sedet ad dextram Patris, Et iterum venturus est cum gloria, judicare vivos et mortuos: Cujus regni non erit finis. Who for us men, and for our salvation came down from heaven, And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, And was made man, And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate. He suffered and was buried, And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures, And ascended into heaven, And sitteth on the right hand of God the Father. And he shall come again to judge both the quick and the dead: Whose kingdom shall have no end.
Καὶ εἰς τὸ Πνεῦμα τὸ Ἅγιον, τὸ Κύριον, καὶ τὸ ζωοποιόν, τὸ ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς ἐκπορευόμενον, τὸ σὺν Πατρὶ καὶ Υἱῷ συμπροσκυνούμενον καὶ συνδοξαζόμενον, τὸ λαλῆσαν διὰ τῶν προφητῶν. Et credo in Spiritum Sanctum, Dominum et Vivificantem, qui ex Patre Filioque procedit; qui cum Patre et Filio simul adoratur et conglorificatur; Qui locutus est per Prophetas. And I believe in the Holy Ghost, The Lord and giver of life, Who proceedeth from the Father and the Son, Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified, Who spake by the Prophets.
Εἰς μίαν ἁγίαν καθολικὴν καὶ ἀποστολικὴν ἐκκλησίαν‧ Ὁμολογοῦμεν ἓν βάπτισμα εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν‧ Προσδοκῶμεν ἀνάστασιν νεκρῶν, Καὶ ζωὴν τοῦ μέλλοντος αἰῶνος. Ἀμήν. Et unam sanctam Catholicam et Apostolicam Ecclesiam. Confiteor unum Baptisma in remissionem peccatorum; et expecto Resurrectionem mortuorum, Et vitam venturi sæculi. Amen. And I believe one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins. And I look for the Resurrection of the dead, And the life fo the world to come. Amen.

Notes

The Anglican Church gives primacy to the Nicene Creed over the three creeds of the Church (Article VIII). There are two reasons: (1) it is the most ancient of all the creeds, (2) it is the most widely accepted.

In its original form, the Nicene Creed was formed at the Council of Nicæa which was summoned by the Roman Emperor Contantine in AD 325. The function of that council was to combat the heresy of Arius, who denied the divinity of Christ. The followers of orthodoxy and of Arius were permitted to put forward their separate points and the council concluded with the banishment of Arius and his followers, who were branded enemies of Christianity.

The creed which was finally signed is based on that proposed by Eusebius of Cæsaria, with major additions by Athanasius (1. "Of one substance with the Father." and 2."Very God of Very God"). This is eesentially the modern creed, but ending with "We believe in the Holy Ghost." There was also an anathema appended:

But as for those who say, 'There was when He was not,' and 'Before He was begotten He was not,' or who profess that the Son of God is of a different substance or essence, or that He is created or changeable, or variable, these the Catholic and Apostolic Church anathematizes."

The creed was modified by the Council of Constantinople in AD 381, which sought to defend the divinity of the Holy Ghost and the authority of the Church. That council added the final clauses from "The Lord, the Giver of Life," until "And the life of the world to come. Amen."

The last important addition was made at the Third Council of Toledo called by Reccared King of the Goths in AD 589. This Council had only local and not general authority. The change was made only to the Latin creed and not the Greek, and inserts the word "Filioque" (and the Son to the clause "and proceedeth from the Father"). This change was sanctioned by Emperor Charles the Great at the Council of Aix-la-Chapelle in AD 809, and by Pope Nicholas I in AD 858. This clause has been the source of more than a thousand years of conflict between the Eastern and Western churches, not because there is no veracity in it, but because the clause was inserted without the authority of a General Council of the Church.


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