The Nicäno-Konstantinopolitanum (also called Nicaeno-Konstantinopolitanum or Nizäno-Konstantinopolitanum or Great Creed ) is the most important Christian creed that is often used as a creed in the liturgy . There it is often (incorrectly) referred to as the “Nicene Creed” (Latin fides Nicaena or symbolum Nicaenum ). The Roman Catholic Church calls it in the liturgy (for example in Praise of God No. 586.2) the Great Creed . In the Lutheran churches it is the confession that is made known by the parish on feast days. In the Evangelical Hymn book it is one of the basic texts of the divine service (e.g. EG Württemberg No. 687).
The Nicano-Constantinopolitanum has been designated as authoritative by the Church since 451. It is widely recognized alongside the Apostolicum ; the churches of Western tradition also refer to the Athanasianum . In the Orthodox Churches and the Old Catholic Church it is used without the addition of the Filioque .
According to the popular assumption, this is an extension of the Creed of the First Council of Nicaea (325), which was decided at the First Council of Constantinople (381). The religious policy of the emperor Theodosius I , who convened the council, is said to have been taken into account. However, its actual genesis and literary basis is still not certain.
The text was first handed down from the Council of Chalcedon (451), where it was read publicly and referred to as the Creed of Constantinople (“Confession of the 150 Holy Fathers”). Both the Nicene Confession and the Nicene-Constantinopolitanum are confirmed:
“By common judgment we have chased away the doctrines of error and renewed inerrorless faith; We have proclaimed the symbol of faith of the 318 [fathers] to all and recognized as ours those fathers who have accepted this short formula of right faith; it is the 150 [fathers] who then came together in the great Constantinople and for their part sealed the same faith ... In order to deny them [= the heretics] all machinations against the truth, this holy, great and ecumenical synod has now assembled and teaches What was proclaimed unshakably from the beginning decided that above all the faith of the 318 holy fathers remains untouched. Furthermore, because of the fighters against the Holy Spirit, it confirms the teaching on the nature of the spirit, which was handed down some time later by the 150 fathers gathered in the imperial city. "
Arius and his followers were condemned here and in the condemnation lines at the end of the Nicene Confession as "doctrines of error" who took a different view on the relationship between God the Father and the Son of God .
From the sixth century to the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed is considered a revision of the creed of Nicaea called, which is used in the churches Oriental Orthodox to this day.
In later times the Western Church added the phrase “and the Son”, Latin: Filioque , to the Holy Spirit . This addition first appeared among the Goths in early medieval Spain and - after a period of rejection - was also accepted by Pope Benedict VIII at the request of Emperor Henry II , without the latter having consulted the other four patriarchates . This addition is one of the main theological reasons for maintaining the Oriental schism between the Western and Eastern Churches.
Apart from this point of contention, the Nicano-Constantinopolitanum is the creed that binds all the churches that recognize the first two ecumenical councils .
Text with transfers
|Greek||Latin||German (ecumenical version)||Syriac / Aramaic|
Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα Θεόν,
Credo in unum Deum,
We believe in the one God ,
ܡܗܝܡܢܝܢܢ ܒܚܕ ܐܠܗܐ. ܐܒܐ ܐܚܝܕ ܟܠ
Despite the uncertain history of the text, the Nicano-Constantinopolitanum is closely related to the Nicene Confession . For a precise comparison, the two texts are compared (with the deletions and additions ).
|We believe in one god||We believe in one god|
|the almighty father,||the almighty father,|
|who created everything, heaven and earth,|
|the creator of everything visible and invisible.||the creator of everything visible and invisible.|
|And to the one Lord Jesus Christ,||And to the one Lord Jesus Christ,|
|the Son of God,||the Son of God,|
|who is the onlyborn begotten of the Father, d. H. from the nature of the father||who was begotten from the Father as the only-born before all time,|
|God from God , light from light,||Light from light,|
|true God from true God,||true God from true God,|
|created, not created,||created, not created,|
|of one being with the Father;||of one being with the Father;|
|through whom all that is in heaven and what is on earth became ;||through which everything became;|
|who came down for us humans and for our salvation||that for us men and for our salvation from heaven descended|
|and became flesh||and was made flesh by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary ,|
|Became human||Became human|
|who was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate|
|suffered||suffered and been buried|
|and rose on the third day||and on the third day was risen according to the scriptures|
|and ascended to heaven||and ascended to heaven|
|He sits on the father's right hand|
|and will come again to judge the living and the dead;||and will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead;|
|and there will be no end to his reign.|
|and to the Holy Spirit.||And to the Holy Spirit|
the Lord is and gives life,
who proceeds from the Father,
who is adored and glorified with the Father and the Son,
who spoke through the prophets,
and the one, holy, catholic (general) and apostolic Church.
We confess the one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We await the resurrection of the dead
and the life of the world to come.
- Josef Wohlmuth (ed.): Decrees of the ecumenical councils (Concilium Oecumenicum Decreta). Volume 1: Councils of the first millennium: from the Council of Nicea (325) to the Fourth Council of Constantinople (869/870) . 2nd Edition. Schöningh, Paderborn 1998, ISBN 3-506-79806-5 (documents in full)
- Reinhart Staats: The Creed of Nicea-Constantinople. Historical and theological foundations . Scientific Book Society, Darmstadt 1996, ISBN 3-534-01840-0
- John ND Kelly: Early Christian Creeds . 3. Edition. Longman, Harlow 1972, ISBN 0-582-49219-X
- Horos (decision of faith) of the Council of Chalcedon; quoted from Josef Wohlmuth (Ed.): Concilium oecumenicorum decreta , Volume 1; Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh, 1998 3 , pp. 83-85
- The original Greek text has the plural throughout. In the version of the Latin and also the Greek liturgy, the singular (" I believe ...") is consistently used , since the confession was used as the baptismal confession of the individual, while in the Greek original it is conceived as a unifying confession of the council.
- The so-called Filioque is omitted in the version of the Greek Catholic , Orthodox and Old Catholic churches.
- Εἰς […] Καθολικὴν […] Ἐκκλησίαν (from Greek καθολικός kathikós "concerning the whole, in general" and ἐκκλησία ekklesía "popular assembly, community, church") can also be referred to as "to the [...] all-embracing [...] Church ”translate. For historical reasons and today also in order to avoid confusion with the denominational understanding of the word, the denominations translate the passage differently into German. In the Protestant hymn book “general” is chosen, in praise of God “Catholic”.
- The expression "God of God" is missing in the Greek version of the Nicaea-Constantinopolitan, but has been reinserted in the Latin tradition; In contrast to the Filioque , its content is undisputed.