We have all heard of #fakenews. Many people curate their social media (and their lives) to only see posts that affirm what they already believe. This tendency seems to be everywhere. It impacts both individuals and organizations (even the professional news media). And it can easily happen within religious (or cultural) communities. Every now and then, we have our comfortable way of looking at the world challenged. We realize we were caught up in fake news. But what is next? What does faith have to do with it?
Fake News and Loss of Faith
Once you formally study a field (and my guess is this is true for any field) the Hollywood version becomes very difficult to stomach. Police officers struggle not to roll their eyes watching police dramas, medical professionals groan at the errors in hospital shows. This can even happen in the world of professional news. Stories in your area of competence containing gross errors can make you skeptical about other stories, in areas you have less personal knowledge.
This is one reason why it is important to keep up with newspapers of record. These are major publications, with large readerships, professional editors and reputations for integrity (link). There is something analogous to this in the Christian faith.
Ancient Faith and the Rule of Faith
We are not the first people to think about Christianity or the first to read the Bible. The earliest believers had the advantage of hearing from Jesus directly. Some of these first disciples Jesus appointed as Apostles. Jesus taught the apostles how to interpret Scripture (Luke 24:27, 45). He taught them about himself and his mission (Matthew 13:11). The Apostles were then commissioned to pass down this “tradition” (2 Thessalonians 2:15). The basic outline of this teaching became known as the Rule of Faith.
The GoodFaith and the Rule of Faith
This Rule of Faith that guided the early church in its reception of Scripture and its proclamation of the gospel. It established the centre upon which further theological reflection could be fruitful. The Rule also fenced off certain avenues keeping the church in the Good Faith as it wrestled with a hostile pagan environment without and false teaching from within.
The GoodFaith podcast will consider the challenges the early Christians faced, explore their solutions and adapt them to our circumstances today. The GoodFaith podcast is ancient wisdom for modern challenges.
The Rule of Faith and the Nicene Creed
We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, visible and invisible (GoodFaith Podcast Episode 009).
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only-begotten Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven,
was incarnate from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary,
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father [and the Son],*
who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.
*The phrase “and the Son” (Latin filioque) is not in the original Greek text.