Once again, Snargles, you ask good thought-provoking questions.
Since you think the Creed was written by inspired men after the close of the Bible as we know it today, do you think there are inspired writers today?
Yes, people are inspired today, but nothing new can really be said because the faith was given "once for all." (Jude 3). Writings today must agree with the early church.
Let me add, too, that the principles of the Nicene Creed, we believe were believed by the earliest Christians. It's not really a new idea. It just helped to clarify what the church always believed.
How would we recognize them?
We have a test: It has to have antiquity (be historical-meaning what the early church believed), universality (believed by the whole church) and consent (agreed to by all).
While today "innovation" has a positive conotation; in the old times, to have innovation in theology was to be avoided.
If the original writers of the Creed were inspired how do you know the writers of the filioque weren't likewise inspired?
Simple. It fails the antiquity test. The historic church did not believe it. Remember the term "proceeds from" comes directly from John 15:26:
"But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father
, He will testify of Me.
Furthermore, the whole church didn't believe it--only Rome did/does. (fails universality and consent test).
Then, there is the fact that it was not added for theological reasons but for political reasons. Finally, RCC tacitly admits it is not important today (although it was a big deal in the 11th century) by allowing in the eastern expressions of the Roman Catholic faiths--so it is not universal even among Catholics.
Recitation of the creed sounds to me like a "vain repetition"
There is nothing wrong with repetition. It helps us to remember. Someone in the Protestant movement took these two words and took it way too far. Firstly, a more accurate translation of the Greek is "empty words." But if even if you maintain the English translation, the problem isn't with "repetition" but vain
repetition. The fact is that early worship was liturgical, so there was repetition.
Then there is . . .
like the reciting of the Lords Prayer, another vain repitition.
Careful there, the Lord's Prayer is NOT a vain repetition.
If Jesus was so against repetition, why did he give us the Lord's Prayer and told us to use it? I humbly suggest to Protestants to give more credence to Jesus' words than some theological conjecture.
We maintain unity of thought through Sunday AM and Wednesday PM Bible study, week-long gospel meetings and pot luck lunches.
If that works for you great, but as often happens, a new leader or even a layman can change things over time. We've maintained our church for 2,000 years by following the traditions passed down from generation to generation. The creeds protect us against heresy. Let me add that the Orthodox Church has been the most consistent in its beliefs. For example, no one believes in strange theories of the resurrection that have polluted many Protestant churches lately. Many of our clerymen came from Protestant churches who no longer maintain the historic faith.
You mentioned the use of the creed in the Orthodox, RCC and Anglican churches. Do you know how it is used in Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist and low-church evangelical churches?
The Presbyterian churches maintain the Nicene Creed (I think), but it is not read in most services. Methodists do as well. The Baptist movement is against all creeds, but remember the Baptist church is the newest of those listed. It's roots rebelled the most against Rome. In my opinion, this was reactionary move, not made with sound judgment.
History is important because it guards against any Tom, Dick, or Harry who thinks he knows how the early church thought.
Thanks again for the questions. Hope this helps.