This capstone unit uses the framework of the Church’s affirmation of faith as found in the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds to prompt reflection on the basic components of Christian belief, and to draw conclusions about how our believing informs responsible living in the present and hope for the future. Consideration is given to how the various components of these articulations of faith arise from the biblical witness and are shaped by the experience of Christian communities. Students will use their biblical, historical, systematic and applied theological knowledge to offer an integrate perspective on ab article of the creed and its implication for Christian practice today.

Unit code: XS9991Y

Unit status: Approved (Major revision)

Points: 24.0

Unit level: Postgraduate Capstone

Unit discipline: Capstone Other S

Proposing College: Yarra Theological Union

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Learning outcomes


Describe the biblical foundations of the creedal affirmations


Evaluate how issues in the early church influenced these beliefs


Explore the ongoing significance of at least two creedal articles


Integrate the biblical, historical and theological sources in understanding and articulating faith


Evaluate the implications for Christian life of one creedal article

Unit sequence

At least 75 points of Elective units (i.e.5 units)



Indicative Bibliography

  • Ashwin-Siejkowski, Piotr. Early Christian Doctrine and the Creeds. London: SCM, 2010.
  • Gunton, Colin, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Christian Doctrine. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.
  • Johnson, Luke T. The Creed: What Christians Believe and Why It Matters. London: Darton Longman and Todd, 2003.
  • Kelly, Anthony. The Creed by Heart, Relearning the Nicene Creed. Blackburn: HarperCollins, 1996.
  • Kelly, J. N. D. Early Christian Creeds. 3rd ed. New York: Continuum, 2004.
  • Kung, Hans. Credo: the Apostles’ Creed for Today. London: SCM, 1993.
  • Lochman, Jan. The Faith We Confess: An Ecumenical Dogmatics. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 2004.
  • Quash, Ben and Michael Ward, eds. Heresies and How to Avoid Them: Why It Matters What Christians Believe*. London: SPCK, 2007.
  • Schussler Fiorenza, Francis, and John P. Galvin, eds. Systematic Theology: Roman Catholic Perspectives. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress, 2011.
  • Webster, John, Kathryn Tanner, and Iain Torrance, eds. The Oxford Handbook of Systematic Theology*. Oxford: OUP, 2007.
  • World Council of Churches, Confessing the One faith: An Ecumenical Explication of the Apostolic Faith. Geneva: WCC, 2015.
  • Young, Frances. The Making of the Creeds. London: SCM, 2002.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)

Minor Essay: focussing on origin and importance of a creedal article. 2,500 words

2500 30.0

Major Essay: focussing on origin, importance and implications for Christian life of a different creedal article. 5,000 words

5000 70.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 27 Sep, 2019

Unit record last updated: 2021-06-07 08:43:49 +1000