The Info List - Second Helvetic Confession

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The Helvetic Confessions are two documents expressing the common belief of the Reformed
churches of Switzerland. The First Helvetic Confession (Latin: Confessio Helvetica prior), known also as the Second Confession of Basel, was drawn up in Basel
in 1536 by Heinrich Bullinger
Heinrich Bullinger
and Leo Jud of Zürich, Kaspar Megander (de) of Bern, Oswald Myconius
Oswald Myconius
and Simon Grynaeus of Basel, Martin Bucer
Martin Bucer
and Wolfgang Capito
Wolfgang Capito
of Strasbourg, with other representatives from Schaffhausen, St Gall, Mülhausen
and Biel. The first draft was written in Latin
and the Zürich
delegates objected to its Lutheran phraseology. However, Leo Jud's German translation was accepted by all, and after Myconius and Grynaeus had modified the Latin
form, both versions were agreed to and adopted on February 26, 1536. The Second Helvetic Confession (Latin: Confessio Helvetica posterior) was written by Bullinger in 1562 and revised in 1564 as a private exercise. It came to the notice of Elector Palatine Frederick III, who had it translated into German and published. It was attractive to some Reformed
leaders as a corrective to what they saw as the overly-Lutheran statements of the Strasbourg
Consensus. An attempt was made in early 1566 to have all the churches of Switzerland
sign the Second Helvetic Confession as a common statement of faith.[1] It gained a favorable hold on the Swiss churches, who had found the First Confession too short and too Lutheran. However, "the Basel
clergy refused to sign the confession, stating that although they found no fault with it, they preferred to stand by their own Basel
Confession of 1534".[2] It was adopted by the Reformed
Church not only throughout Switzerland but in Scotland
(1566), Hungary
(1567), France
(1571), Poland
(1578), and after the Westminster Confession of Faith, the Scots Confession and the Heidelberg Catechism
Heidelberg Catechism
is the most generally recognized confession of the Reformed
Church. The Second Helvetic Confession was also included in the United Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.'s Book of Confessions, in 1967, and remains in the Book of Confessions adopted by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).


1 See also 2 Literature 3 References 4 External links

See also[edit]

Reformation in Switzerland Helvetic Consensus Confession of Basel Consensus Tigurinus


L Thomas, La Confession helvétique (Geneva, 1853); Philip Schaff, Creeds of Christendom, i. 390-420, iii. 234-306; Julius Müller, Die Bekenntnisschriften der reformierten Kirche (Leipzig, 1903).


^ Burnett, Amy Nelson. 1992. "Simon Sulzer and the Consequences of the 1563 Strasbourg
Consensus in Switzerland" in Archive for Reformation History 83: 154–179, p. 178 ^ Burnett, Amy Nelson. 1992. "Simon Sulzer and the Consequences of the 1563 Strasbourg
Consensus in Switzerland" in Archive for Reformation History 83: 154–179, p. 178

External links[edit]

The Second Helvetic Confession in English Translation Text of the creeds from Schaff's Creeds of Christendom (vol. 3) at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library:

The First Helvetic Confession (in its original Latin
and High German translation) The Second Helvetic Confession (in its original Latin)

History of the creeds from Schaff's Creeds of Christendom (vol. 1) at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library:

"The First Helvetic Confession" "The Second Helvetic Confession"

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Helvetic Confession". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. 

v t e

confessions of faith

Continental Reformed

Tetrapolitan Confession Helvetic Confessions Consensus Tigurinus French Confession of Faith Three Forms of Unity

Heidelberg Catechism Belgic Confession Canons of Dort

Harmony of the Confessions of Faith Helvetic Consensus Conclusions of Utrecht Barmen Declaration Belhar Confession

British and American


Scots Confession Westminster Standards

Westminster Confession of Faith Westminster Shorter Catechism Westminster Larger Catechism

Confession of 1967 Book of Confessions


Thirty-nine Articles Lambeth Articles


1644 Baptist Confession of Faith Keach's Catechism 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith New Hampshire Confession of Faith Baptist Affirmation of Faith 1966


Cambridge Platform Savoy Declaration Saybrook Platform

Subordinate standard

Authority control

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