Christ Our Redeemer
A few years back I identified a gap in Reformed liturgy: a lack of well-designed, corporate recitation that rehearses redemptive history with a focus on the saving work of Christ. Sure, some churches would recite the Westminster or Heidelberg catechisms, but those confessions were not crafted to be recited in the same way as the Apostles’ Creed. After considerable conversation with a number of pastors and theologians, I completed a draft of something that worked well. The problem I ran into was its title; something that is corporately recited is generally called a creed, but labeling it “The Redemption Creed” provoked dislike of the whole project from my friends and counselors.
So, when I introduced the recitation into my current congregation, I changed the title to “Christ Our Redeemer” without any other genre modifiers. In the Reformed tradition there are no prescriptions on corporate recitations of faith, so it does not function as a usurpation of either our church’s doctrine or the primacy of the Catholic creeds. It is part of the rotation of the confessions of faith our church makes before we come to the Lord’s Supper. And it works well: the rhythm and structure are conducive to corporate recitation, it’s a good length, and it reflects the core of the Orthodox Protestant tradition on redemption. You can find a copy of it below.
God created us in his image,
righteous and holy.
Defiled by sin,
we fell short of God’s glory, deserving his condemnation;
For our redemption,
Christ the Son was manifested in the flesh,
humbled himself to death,
and bore our sins on the cross.
By his obedience and death,
Christ satisfied the just wrath of God in our place
freed us from the rule of sin,
and gave himself as our righteousness.
He reconciled us to God the Father,
who pardoned and accepted us as his children
for Christ’s sake alone;
For our redemption,
Christ rose from the dead
to make us
his righteous and holy new creation;
And we believe
That Christ ascended to the Father,
as the head of his body, the church,
and gave us his Holy Spirit.
The Spirit unites us by faith to the Lord Jesus Christ
as he abides with us,
the guarantee of Christ our inheritance, until he comes again. Amen.