On Feb 26, 9:21 am, "Peter T. Daniels" <gramma...@verizon.net> wrote: > On Feb 25, 10:51 am, "sjdevn...@yahoo.com" <sjdevn...@yahoo.com> > wrote: > > > FWIW, the Catholic resources I've looked at don't seem to limit their > > use of "Christian" to those who believe in the Nicene Creed. Hardon's > > _Modern Catholic Dictionary_ says: > > > Christian: A person who is baptized. A professed Christian also > > believes in the essentials of the Christian faith, notably in the > > Apostles' Creed. > > The Apostles' Creed is a later document. I've never noticed it > included in a Missal. (But then, I haven't looked at a Missal in > decades.) It's the creed usually said in Protestant churches (and also > at Episcopal Morning Prayer) when a creed is recited.
Historically, the content of the Apostle's Creed predates the Nicene Creed (its credos are found, for instance, in the writings of Irenaeus c. 200 AD, over a century before the Council of Nicea), though the precise wording used by modern churches has changed some since then. The Protestant version that you refer to, used by Episcopalean Churches among others, is a _much_ later formulation--it's also obviously not what the Catholic dictionary I quoted has in mind.
The exact timeline is largely irrelevant to the discussion*, though. The salient point is that even the Catholic Church considers those who are baptized and believe in the tenets of the Apostle's Creed to be Christians--belief in the stricter Nicene dogma isn't a mandatory hallmark of Christianity even in the eyes of the Church.
Even that is a sidetrack, though, since the Church (and Christians in general) aren't the final arbiters of what "Christian" means in English--but I figured it was a useful way of demonstrating that even the largest Christian denomination doesn't consider the Nicene Creed as an acid test for Christianity.
*It's only useful for the historical context that drove the content of each message--the Apostle's Creed was formulated partially as a reaction to Gnosticism, and affirms non-Gnostic beliefs (notably,it specifies that God created the Earth). The Nicene Creed was formulated as a reaction to Arianism, and adds a whole additional layer of dogma in an attempt to distinguish Nicene believers as strict Trinitarians.