The older I get the more I think Christians need to pay attention to the traditional creeds of Christianity. And I think there is increasing interest in Christian history and the creeds among Evangelicals because of the need to ground our faith in something greater than our current theology and practice. Bob Corwall positively reviewed Alister McGrath’s book that seems to be focused exactly on that:
What is faith? Is it assent to doctrine or is it putting your trust in God? Diana Butler Bass has suggested that the Latin word credo, which we usually translate as “I believe”, should be understood as “I set my heart upon” or “I give my loyalty to” (Christianity After Religion: The End of Church and the Birth of a New Spiritual Awakening, p. 117). It has less to do with doctrinal formulations and more to do with relationships. I’m attracted to this idea. At the same time, this embrace of another is not ephemeral. There is substance – not perhaps an abstract scholastic version, but substance nonetheless. Peter Rollins in a recent book speaks of “the idolatry of God,” and raises questions about seeking certainty or satisfaction in our conception of God. Although Rollins and Bass come from different angles, both speak from a more postmodern perspective. Alister McGrath, on the other hand, offers a more traditional evangelical take on matters of faith. Affirmation of substantive doctrines is important. Creeds offer definitive, if incomplete, statements about the object of faith.