Mailvox: a creedal correction

In which my religious views are somewhat mischaracterized on Twitter:

Avenging Red Hand: Vox is amusing, but highly arrogant, and heterodox, if not outright heretical, on his views of the Trinity.

Uilesmiselani: Yes, he’s a heretic. Not even Nicene.

As it happens, my views are entirely Nicene in the proper sense, they simply do not happen to be in line with what should be technically considered Constantinoplene rather than Nicene.  Consider the actual Nicene Creed of 325:

We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, begotten of the Father, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father;

By whom all things were made;

Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down and was incarnate and was made man;

He suffered, and the third day he rose again, ascended into heaven;

From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

And in the Holy Ghost.

I readily affirm all of that. Now, one can certainly quibble over the “one substance with the Father” aspect, as it can be interpreted in various ways and I do not accept it means that “the Father Almighty” and “the Son of God” are exactly equal and wholly interchangeable at all times because this is an explicitly anti-Biblical position; how can God the Father have abandoned Himself?

What I take exception to is the addition made by the First Council of Constaninople 56 years later, in which the simple belief in the existence of the Holy Ghost is raised to a quasi-equal status with both God the Father and the Son of God alike.

“And in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father, who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified, who spake by the prophets.”

How can the Helper, who came after the Son, be considered the Giver of life when not only life, but life eternal, had already been given? And if the Father and the Son are wholly equal, how can the Holy Ghost proceed solely from the Father and not the Son, especially if the Son is the one by whom all things are made? Is proceeding more akin to being begotten or being made?

It seems to me that the true Nicene Creed is not only more fundamentally Christian, but more coherent than the later Constantinoplene Creed for which it is so readily confused. These questions don’t trouble me in the slightest, as we know perfectly well how dark the glass is through which we see these things, but I do think it is inaccurate to describe me as “not even Nicene” or a heretic in the Scriptural sense as opposed to one based on whatever the post-Scriptural dogma happens to be at the moment.

“Heterodoxically Nicene” would, I think, be a more judicious description of my Christian theological perspective.