Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds According to Scripture

A few years back BJS reposted a breakdown of the Nicene Creed and the Scriptures that support the different sections.  This guide has proven popular owing to the confusion that exists among some Christians, and sadly some Lutherans, regarding the Creed as a man made tradition and thus not being scriptural.  Thus this guide was aimed to show the sedes doctrinae of the Nicene Creed.

This is useful as the Creeds themselves form the rule of faith for the Christian church, that is a distillation of the basics of the faith as drawn from Scripture.  As such we should have confidence in them and know where in Scripture they come from.

For a class that I am teaching on the Ecumenical Creeds I wanted to expand this guide to include the Apostles’ Creed so that I could cover both the Nicene and Apostles’ simultaneously.  As a further goal I wanted to find a hymn for each line of the Creed as the Church sings the faith she confesses in the Creeds.  Below you find the result, which I hope is helpful for those teaching the Creeds.

I have mainly used https://steadfastlutherans.org/2013/06/the-nicene-creed/ as my initial blueprint (many thanks to the original authors of this work). I follow the order of the Nicene Creed for layout, putting alongside the Apostles’ for comparison. Where the Apostles’ text is out of order with respect to the Nicene we indicate with an asterisk(*). I then added references where only antilegomena books are used for texts.  I also added references for places where the Apostles’ Creed contains something that the Nicene does not. I will note that the references below are not exhaustive.  I also suggested hymns from the Lutheran Service Book (LSB) for each line of the Creeds.  You can find a PDF version of this guide at the First Lutheran Church of Boston website.


Article I: God the Father, Creation


Apostles’ Creed

Nicene Creed



I believe

I believe

Rom. 10:9, Jas 2:19, John 14:1

Sing Praise to God, The Highest Good

in God,

in one God,

Deut. 6:4, Is. 44:6

(LSB 819)

the Father

the Father

Is. 63:16, 2 Pet. 1:17, Mt. 6:9

Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise



Gen. 17:1, Ps 91:1, Rev. 4:8

(LSB 802)



Job 4:17, 35:10, Is. 17:7, 54:5

Praise to the Lord, the Almighty

of heaven

of heaven

Gen. 1:1, 1:8

(LSB 790)

and earth

and earth

Ps. 104:5, Jer. 51:15

and all things

Gen. 1:31

visible and invisible.

Ps. 89:11-12, Amos 4:13, Rev. 3:5, Col. 1:16


Article II: God the Son, Justification


Apostles’ Creed

Nicene Creed



our Lord*

And in one Lord

Eph. 4:5

At the Name of Jesus

And in Jesus Christ*

Jesus Christ,

Acts 10:36, 11:17, Rom. 1:7, 5:1, 1 Cor. 1:2, 6:11, 2 Cor. 1:2, 8:9, Gal. 1:3, 6:14, Eph. 1:2, 3:11, Phil. 1:2, 3:20, Col. 1:3, 2:6, 1 Thes. 1:1, 5:9, 2 Thes. 1:1, 2:14, 1 Tim. 6:3, 6:14, 2 Tim. 1:2, Philemon 3, 25, Heb. 13:20, Jas. 1:1, 2:1, 1 Pet. 1:3, 3:15, 2 Pet. 1:8, 1:14, Jude 17, 21, Rev. 22:20-21

(LSB 512)

His only*

the only-begotten

John 1:18

To Jordan Came the Christ, Our Lord


Son of God,

Matt. 3:17, John 3:16

(LSB 406)

begotten of His Father

Ps. 2:7, Heb. 1:5

Of the Father’s Love Begotten

before all worlds,

John 1:1, Col. 1:17, 1 John 1:1

(LSB 384)

God of God,

John 1:1-2

O Christ, Who Art the Light and Day

Light of Light,

Ps. 27:1, John 1:9, 8:12, 12:35-36, 1 John 1:5-7, Mt. 17:2, 17:5

(LSB 882)

very God of very God

John 5:18, 8:58, 17:1-5

O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright (LSB 395)


John 1:1, Heb 1:5

O Wondrous Type! O Vision Fair

not made,

Mic. 5:2, John 1:18, 17:5

(LSB 413)

being of one substance with the Father,

John 10:30, 14:9

Savior of the Nations, Come (LSB 332)

by Whom all things were made;

1 Cor. 8:6, Col. 1:16

Thy Strong Word (LSB 578)

Who for us men

Mt. 20:28, John 10:10

O Love, How Deep

and for our salvation

Mt. 1:21, Luke 19:10

(LSB 544)

came down from heaven

Rom. 10:6, Eph. 4:10

Who was conceived

and was incarnate

Col. 2:9

The Angel Gabriel From Heaven Came

by the Holy Spirit,

by the Holy Spirit

Mt. 1:18

(LSB 356)

born of the Virgin Mary,

of the Virgin Mary

Luke 1:34-35

and was made man;

John 1:14

All My Heart Again Rejoices (LSB 360)

was crucified,*

and was crucified

Mt. 20:19, John 19:18, Rom. 5:6, 5:8, 2 Cor. 13:4

Jesus, I Will Ponder Now

also for us

Rom. 5:8, 2 Cor. 5:15

(LSB 440)

under Pontius Pilate,

under Pontius Pilate.

Mt. 27:2, 27:26, 1 Tim. 6:13


He suffered

1 Pet. 2:21, Heb. 2:10

O Sacred Head, Now Wounded


Mt. 27:50, Mark 15:37, Luke 23:46, John 19:30, 19:33, Rom. 5:6, 6:3, 1 Cor. 11:26, 15:3

(LSB 450)

and was buried.

and was buried.

Mark 15:46, 1 Cor. 15:4

He descended into hell.

1 Pet. 3:19, Eph. 4:9

Christ is the World’s Redeemer (LSB 539)

The third day

And the third day

Mt. 27:63, 28:1, 1 Cor. 15:4

Christ Jesus Lay in Death’s Strong Bands

He rose again from the dead.

He rose again

Mark 16:6, 2 Tim. 2:8

(LSB 458)

according to the Scriptures

Ps. 16:10, Luke 24:25-27, 1 Cor. 15:4

He ascended

and ascended

Luke 24:51, Acts 1:9

Up Through Endless Ranks of Angels

into heaven

into heaven

Mark 16:19, Acts 1:11

(LSB 491)

and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.

and sits at the right hand of the Father.

Ps. 110:1, Mt. 26:64, Acts 7:56, Heb. 1:3

See, the Lord Ascends in Triumph (LSB 494)

From thence He shall come

And He will come again

John 14:3, 1 Thes. 4:16

The Day Is Surely Drawing Near

with glory

Mt. 16:27, 24:30, 25:31, 26:64, Mark 8:38, Col. 3:4

(LSB 508)

to judge

to judge

Mt. 25:31-46, Acts 17:31

the living and the dead.

both the living and the dead,

Acts 10:42, 1 Pet. 4:5

Whose kingdom

John 18:36, 2 Tim. 4:1, 4:18

The Clouds of Judgment Gather

will have no end.

Luke 1:33, Rev. 11:15, Ps. 145:13

(LSB 513)


Article III: God the Holy Spirit, Sanctification


Apostles’ Creed

Nicene Creed



I believe in the Holy Spirit,

And I believe in the Holy Spirit,

Mt. 28:19, Acts 13:2

Come, Holy Ghost, God and Lord (LSB 497)

the Lord

2 Cor. 3:17

O Day Full of Grace

and giver of life,

John 6:63, Rom. 7:6, 8:2, 2 Cor. 3:6

(LSB 503)

Who proceeds from the Father

John 14:16-17

Come, Holy Ghost, Creator Blest

and the Son,

John 15:26, Rom 8:9, Gal. 4:6

(LSB 498/499)

Who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped

Luke 4:8, John 4:24

The Lord, My God, Be Praised (LSB 794)

and glorified,

John 4:24, 1 Tim. 1:17

Who spoke by the prophets.

1 Pet. 1:10-11, 2 Pet. 1:21

God Has Spoken by His Prophets (LSB 583)

And I believe in one

1 Cor. 10:16-17, 12:12-13

The Church’s One Foundation

the holy


Eph. 3:16-17, 5:27, 1 Pet. 2:9

(LSB 644)



1 Cor. 1:2

and apostolic

Eph. 2:20, Rev. 21:14



Acts 20:28, Eph. 1:22-23, Col. 1:24, Heb. 12:23, 1 Pet. 2:9

the communion of saints,

1 Cor. 1:2, 10:16-17, Eph. 2:19, 6:18, Rev. 7:9, 7:14

For All the Saints (LSB 677)

I acknowledge one Baptism

John 3:5, Rom. 6:3, Eph. 4:5

God’s Own Child, I Gladly Say It

the forgiveness of sins,

for the remission of sins,

Acts 2:38, 1 Pet. 3:21, Tit. 3:5

(LSB 594)

the resurrection of the body,

and I look for the resurrection of the dead

1 Thes. 4:16, 1 Cor. 15:12-13, 15:16, 15:52

Lord, Thee I Love with All My Heart (LSB 708)

and the life everlasting.

and the life of the world to come.

1 Cor. 15:54-57, Rev. 22:5

Jerusalem the Golden (LSB 672)



Ps. 41:13, 2 Cor. 1:20

Praise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow (LSB 805)

About Dr. Paul Edmon

Dr. Paul Edmon is from Seattle, Washington and now resides in Boston, Massachusetts. He has his B.S. in Physics from the University of Washington in 2004 and Ph.D. in Astrophysics from the University of Minnesota in 2010. He is professional staff at Harvard University and acts as liaison between Center for Astrophysics and Research Computing. A life long Lutheran, he is formerly a member of Messiah Lutheran Church in Seattle and University Lutheran Chapel in Minneapolis. He now attends First Lutheran Church (FLC) of Boston where he teaches Lutheran Essentials. He sings bass in the FLC choir and Canto Armonico. He was elected to the Concordia Seminary St. Louis Board of Regents in 2016. He is single and among his manifold interests are scotch, football, anime, board games, mythology, history, philosophy, and general nerdiness. The views expressed here are his own and do not represent Harvard University or Concordia Seminary. Twitter: @pauledmon


Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds According to Scripture — 7 Comments

  1. @DCO Tom #5

    No, the opposite. But the term hell is not precise.

    In Acts 2, if Christ is not _left_ in Hades, then He must have been there.

    In Luke 23, I disagree with the common opinion that Paradise is Heaven.

  2. @Tom #6

    Paradise is heaven. Remember it is a Lutheran teaching as well as Calvinist that Christ’s divine nature continued to operate in heaven and the universe as part of the Trinity throughout the 33 years of his incarnation in body and soul on earth. Hence, Christ is in heaven with the crucified thief after the crucifixion as well as being in the tomb for three days as well.

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