Or, #69 on my list of things to do before I die:
For those of you who wonder where I stand
In the whole range of spiritual beliefs
(Although I have the feeling that you know
By now), here is a brief and basic piece,
Put down in blank verse, of the Christian faith,
Which I have called my own for several years.
This, then, my brethren, is what we believe,
The tenets of an ancient holy faith,
Passed down to us from men and women through
Millennia of Christendom: We do
Believe in Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,
Creator, Savior, Comforter—the Three
In One, the Triune God, the Lord, the King
Of glory, crowned in holy majesty.
He has created heav’n and earth, the seas,
And all that lives and breathes and moves within.
And He came down incarnate to this sphere,
In person of our one Lord Jesus Christ,
True God, true man, the mystery we believe;
Conceived within the virgin Mary’s womb.
He suffered under Pilate’s judgment, and
He bled and died to cover all our sin.
And Joseph laid His body in the tomb,
But on the third day He would conquer death
And rise alive, victorious, then ascend
And sit at the right hand of God
The Father. And one day He will yet come
To judge, to rule, to reign, to make things new.
He sent the Holy Spirit to the one
And holy universal church, His bride
And now His body here on earth,
United with the ones who went before,
The ones who are to come, and now the ones
Who are far off and who are near.
And through His perfect life and perfect death
We now have full forgiveness of our sins.
We have been baptized in the triune Name,
The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and
One day we will rise like Him from death
And live and reign eternally—amen.
And I could still say more, but then it would
Then venture into areas of debate—
Predestination versus our free will,
End times, the sacraments, the covenants
The role of men and women, and so on—
But what I’ve said before, that statement there
(In case you didn’t know, what I just did
Was paraphrase the old Apostle’s Creed),
Is what we all as Christians still believe
And will believe until the end of time.
To go much further goes into the grey
And nonessential areas—so there.
(Although, here at the end, I will now say
That for my part, Reformed beliefs
Are where I take my stand, but that won’t mean
That I don’t welcome others, too, of course.)