Q1: What was done for you at your baptism?
A: My parents and godparents, in my name and their own, affirmed their resolve to follow Christ. And I was made a member of Christ’s body 2, the child of God, and an inheritor of the kingdom of heaven.
Q2: What three things does following Christ involve?
A: First, renouncing the devil and all his works, the pomps and vanities of this wicked world, and the sinful desires of the flesh. Second, believing all the articles of the Christian faith. Third, keeping God’s holy will and commandments all the days of my life.
Q3: Do you think yourself bound to do these things?
A: Most certainly, with God as my helper.
The Apostles’ Creed
Q4: What are the articles of your Christian faith, as summarized in the Apostles’ Creed? 3
A: I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.
Q5: What three things do you chiefly learn from the Apostles’ Creed? 4
A: First, I learn to believe in God the Father, who has made me and all the world. Second, I learn to believe in God the Son, who has redeemed me and all mankind. Third, I learn to believe in God the Holy Spirit, who sanctifies me and all the elect people of God.
Q6: Why do you believe the articles of the Apostles’ Creed?
A: Because they may be proved by Holy Scripture. 5
The Ten Commandments
Q7. Because following Christ involves not just believing the articles of the Christian faith but also keeping God’s holy will and commandments all the days of our lives, tell me how many commandments God has given us.
Q8: Where are they in the Bible?
A: In Exodus chapter 20, and again in Deuteronomy chapter 5.
Q9: What are the first four commandments? 6
- I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me.
- You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them.
- You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
- Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day.
Q10: What do you chiefly learn from these commandments?
A: My duty to God.
Q11: What are the last six commandments?
- Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.
Q12: What do you chiefly learn from these commandments?
A: My duty to my neighbor.
Q13: How does Jesus summarize God’s commandments?
A: You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. And you shall love your neighbor as yourself. 7
Q14: What is another way that Jesus summarizes your duty to your neighbor?
A: Whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them. 8
Q15: What is this summary called?
A: The Golden Rule.
The Lord’s Prayer
Q16. You are not able to do these things in your own strength, nor are you able to keep God’s commandments or serve him without his special grace. So you must learn at all times to call for this by diligent prayer. Therefore, recite the Lord’s Prayer, how Jesus taught us to pray. 9
A: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil. For the kingdom, the power, and the glory, are yours now and forever. Amen.
Q17. Where in the Bible does Jesus teach us to pray like this?
A: In Matthew chapter 6, part of the Sermon on the Mount, and again in Luke chapter 11.
Q18: Why do you call God your Father?
A: God the Father is my father. He adopts as his children and as heirs of his kingdom those who follow Christ. I can therefore draw near to him in prayer with confidence, like a little child asking things of his human father.
Q19: Why do you ask that God’s name be hallowed, his kingdom come, and his will be done?
A: So that these things may happen among us, just as they do in heaven. I ask God to send his grace to me and to everyone, so that we may worship him, serve him, and obey him as we ought to do.
Q20: What does it mean to ask God for our daily bread?
A: I ask God to send us all that we need, for both our souls and our bodies, and I pray that we would acknowledge his provision and receive it with thanksgiving.
Q21: What does it mean to ask God to forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us?
A: I ask God, by his grace, to show us mercy and not deny our prayers because of our sins, and I promise that I will in the same way forgive and do good to those who sin against me.
Q22: What does it mean to ask God to save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil?
A: I ask God to save and defend us in all dangers, both spiritual and bodily; and to keep us from all sin and wickedness, and from our spiritual enemy, and from everlasting death.
Q23: Why do you end by saying “Amen”?
A: “Amen” means “so be it,” or “it shall be so.” I trust that God will do all of these things, out of his mercy and goodness, through Jesus Christ. For Jesus himself has commanded us to pray in this way, and God has promised that He will hear us.
The Church & Its Sacraments
Q24: We pray for God’s special grace, and learn to love God and our neighbor, in fellowship with the rest of Christ’s body, the holy catholic church. So tell me, what is the visible church of Christ?
A: The church is a congregation of the faithful, in which the pure word of God is preached and the sacraments are duly administered according to Christ’s ordinance. 10
Q25: How many sacraments has Christ ordained in his church?
A: Christ has ordained two sacraments of the Gospel 11: baptism and the Lord’s Supper (or Holy Communion).
Q26: What does the word “sacrament” mean?
A: A sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace given to us. Christ himself ordained the sign as a means by which we receive that grace and a pledge to assure us of it.
Q27: How many parts are there to a sacrament?
A: Two: the outward and visible sign, and the inward and spiritual grace.
Q28: When did Jesus ordain the sacrament of baptism?
A: In the Great Commission at the end of Matthew, when he told his Apostles: “Go . . . and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
Q29: What is the outward and visible sign in baptism?
A: Water, in which a person is baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
Q30: What is the inward and spiritual grace?
A: Death to sin, as if it were drowned in the water, and re-birth to righteousness. We were born with a sinful nature and as children of wrath, but by the new birth we are born of God and made the children of grace.
Q31: What two things are required of persons to be baptized?
A: Repentance and faith. By repentance, they turn from sin. By a true and lively faith, they steadfastly believe the promises of God proclaimed to them in that sacrament; and, when they believe, they are accounted righteous before God solely on account of the merit of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 12
Q32: Why then are infants baptized, when because of their age they cannot do these things?
A: Because God has promised to be both our God and the God of our children. And even little children can be “disciples” in some fashion of their heavenly Father and Jesus their brother, just as they can know and follow their earthly parents and siblings. At baptism, their parents and godparents promise to teach them to observe all that God has commanded, by bringing them up in the Christian faith. 13
The Lord’s Supper
Q33: When did Jesus ordain the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper?
A: At the Last Supper with his Apostles, the night before he was crucified and died.
Q34: Why did Jesus ordain the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper?
A: So that we would always remember the sacrifice of his death and the benefits we receive from it, walking by the Spirit as children and heirs of our heavenly Father and fellow heirs with Christ.
Q35: Why is the Lord’s Supper sometimes called the Holy Eucharist?
A: “Eucharist” means thanksgiving. As we remember, we also give thanks.
Q36: What supper do we anticipate in the Lord’s Supper?
A: The marriage supper of Christ and his bride, the church. Christ sacrificed himself for her, to redeem and sanctify her, so that he might receive her in purity and splendor when he comes again. 14
Q37: What is the outward and visible sign of the Lord’s Supper?
A: Bread and wine, which Jesus commanded us to receive.
Q38: What is the inward part, or thing signified?
A: The body and blood of Christ, which are spiritually taken and received by the faithful in the Lord’s Supper. 15
Q39: What benefits do we who partake receive?
A: We are strengthened and refreshed in our souls by the body and blood of Christ, as we are in our bodies by the bread and wine.
Q40: What three things are required of us when we come to the Lord’s Supper?
A: We must examine ourselves to see whether we truly repent of our sins and have resolved to lead a new life. We must have a true and lively faith in God’s mercy through Christ, with a thankful remembrance of his death. And we must be in charity with all.
- An adaptation and updating for younger children of the catechism in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer. (1928 BCP‘s catechism is mostly same as 1662.) Draws on the 39 Articles of Religion, the BCP-based catechism in An English Prayer Book (Church Society 1994), and Luther’s Small Catechism (particularly for Lord’s Prayer). © CKM (rev. 2013); email@example.com; Truro Anglican Church, Fairfax, Va.
- 1662/1928 BCPs & Church Society: “member of Christ.”
- Text of Creed from 1979 BCP, baptism & confirmation (used at Truro). Differs from 1662/1928 BCPs in adding “the power of”; using “is seated” in lieu of “sitteth”; and omitting “From there” before “He will come.”
- 1662 BCP: “God the Holy Ghost, who sanctifieth me, and all the elect people of God.” Church Society: “God the Holy Spirit, who sanctifies me and all the elect people of God.” 1928 BCP: “God the Holy Ghost, who sanctifieth me, and all the people of God.”
- Article 8: Creeds “ought thoroughly to be received and believed: for they may be proved by most certain warrants of Holy Scripture.” See also Article 6.
- Uses Exodus 20 (ESV). 2d, 3d, and 4th shortened. 10th also shortened.
- Mark 12:29-31 (ESV). Also at Luke 10:27, in parable of Good Samaritan, and Matthew 22:37-40.
- Matthew 7:12 (ESV). See also Luke 6:31.
- Text of Lord’s Prayer from 1979 BCP, Holy Eucharist: Rite Two (as sung at Truro).
- Added from Article 19, to provide a transition to the discussion of the sacraments.
- “Sacraments of the Gospel” is from Article 25. 1662/1928 BCPs: “Two only, as generally necessary to salvation.”
- Church Society adds the last clause (after semi-colon), from Article 11.
- Expands Church Society based on Article 27’s reference to the Great Commission. 1662/1928 BCPs: “Because they promise them both by their Sureties; which promise, when they come to age, themselves are bound to perform.”
- See Matthew 26:29; Luke 22:18; I Corinthians 11:26; Revelation 19:7-9; Ephesians 5:25-27.
- 1928 BCP. 1662: “The Body and Blood of Christ, which are verily and indeed taken and received by the faithful in the Lord’s Supper.” Church Society (see Article 28): “The body and blood of Christ, which are truly taken and received, only in a heavenly and spiritual manner, by the faithful in the Lord’s Supper.”