Reformed Christian confessions of faith


Reformed Christian confessions of faith

Reformed Christian confessions of faith are documents of the faith of various Reformed churches. The Reformed churches express their consensus of faith in various creeds. A few creeds are shared by many denominations, which have made their choices from among the various creeds for primarily historical reasons. Some of the common creeds are (with year of writing):

Continental

*Three Forms of Unity:
**Heidelberg Catechism (1563)
**Belgic Confession (1566)
**Canons of Dordt (1619)
*Second Helvetic Confession (1566)
*Theological Declaration of Barmen (1934)

The Three Forms of Unity are common among Reformed churches with origins in the European continent (especially those in the Netherlands).

Presbyterian

*Scots Confession (1560)
*Westminster Standards:
**Westminster Confession of Faith (1646)
**Westminster Shorter Catechism (1649)
**Westminster Larger Catechism (1649)
* A Brief Statement of Faith (1991)

The "Westminster Standards" are common among Reformed churches (known commonly as the Presbyterian churches) with origins in the British Isles. The largest Presbyterian denomination in the United States, the Presbyterian Church (USA) has adopted the Book of Confessions, which incorporates versions of both Continental and Presbyterian Reformed confessions of faith.

Congregationalist

The Independents declined from Reformed theology on issues of the role of the magistrate, and the powers of higher church courts, but retained the Calvinist system touching many other issues.
* Savoy Declaration (1658)

Baptist

Some of the Baptist churches came alongside of the Puritan movement in England, and in doing so sought to agree as far as conscience allowed, in the Calvinistic form of doctrine which prevailed among the Presbyterians and many Congregationalists. Except for their few exceptions concerning congregational church governance, and adult baptism, these "Particular" Baptists adopted the Reformed faith.

*London Baptist Confession of Faith (1689)

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