Table of Contents / Overview
"The Dawn" Fellowship of Christadelphians
- Statement of Faith
Fellowship between brethren and sisters of the Lord Jesus Christ exists upon the basis of identity of conviction concerning fundamental matters of belief: the apostle John wrote:
" If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth; but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another." (I John. 1 v 6,7),
That being so, it becomes necessary to define the doctrines that are recognized as the truth for the purpose of reducing our identical convictions to a form which shuts the door against misunderstanding. The Statement of Faith which follows is that which was adopted by the Christadelphian body in 1886, together with additions concerning service in the armed forces, marriage and divorce, which have become necessary by reason of circumstances arising since that time.
A Statement of the One Faith
FORMING THE CHRISTADELPHIAN BASIS OF FELLOWSHIP
A SPECIFICATION OF DOCTRINES TO BE REJECTED
That the book, currently known as the Bible, consisting of the Scriptures of Moses, the Prophets, and the Apostles, is the only source of knowledge concerning God and His purposes at present extant or available in the earth, and that the same were wholly given by inspiration of God in the writers, and are consequently without error in all parts of them, except such as may be due to errors of transcription or translation-
(II Timothy 3:16; I Corinthians 2:13; Hebrews 1:1; II Peter 1:21; I Corinthians 14:37; Nehemiah 9:30; John 10:35).
- That the only true God is He who was revealed to Abraham, Isaac, and
Jacob, by angelic visitation and vision, and to Moses at the flaming bush
(unconsumed) and at Sinai, and who manifested Himself in the Lord Jesus
Christ, as the supreme self-existent Deity, the ONE FATHER, dwelling in
unapproachable light, yet everywhere present by His Spirit, which is a unity
with His person in heaven. He hath out of His own underived energy created
heaven and earth, and all that in them is.
(Isaiah 40:13-25; 43:10-12; 44:6-8; 45:5; 46:9-10; Job 38, 39, and 40; Deuteronomy 6:1; Mark 12:29-32; I Corinthians 8:4-6; Ephesians 4:6; I Timothy 2:5; Nehemiah 9:6; Job 26:13; Psalm 114:8; 146:6; 148:5; Isaiah 40:26-27; Jeremiah 10:12-13; 27:5; 32:25; 51:15; Acts 14:15; 17:24; I Chronicles 29:11-14; Psalm 62:11; 145:3; Isaiah 26:4; 40:26; Job 9:4; 36:5; Psalm 92:5; 104:24; 147:4-5; Isaiah 28:29; Romans 16:27; I Timothy 1:17; II Chronicles 16:9; Job 28:24; 34:21; Psalm 33:13-14; 44:21; 94:9; 139:7-11; Proverbs 15:3; Jeremiah 23:24; 32:19; Amos 9:2-3; Acts 17:27-28; Psalm 123:1; I Kings 8:30-39, 43-49; Matthew 6:9; I Timothy 1:17; 6:15-16).
- That Jesus of Nazareth was the Son of God, begotten of the virgin Mary
by the Holy Spirit, without the intervention of man, and afterwards anointed
with the same Spirit, without measure, at his baptism.
(Matthew 1:23; I Timothy 3:16; Acts 2:22-36, Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-35; Galatians 4:4; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 3:16-17; Isaiah 11:2; 42:1; John 3:34; 7:16; 8:26-28; 14:10-24).
- That the appearance of Jesus of Nazareth on the earth was necessitated
by the position and state into which the human race had been brought by
the circumstances connected with the first man.
(I Corinthians 15:21-22; Romans 5:12-19; Genesis 3:19; II Corinthians 5:19-21).
- That the first man was Adam, whom God created out of the dust of the
ground as a living soul or natural body of life, "very good" in kind and
condition, and placed him under a law through which the continuance of life
was contingent on obedience.
(Genesis 2:7; 18:27; Job 4:19; 33:6; I Corinthians 15:46, 49; Genesis 2:17).
- That Adam broke this law, and was judged unworthy of immortality, and
sentenced to return to the ground from whence he was taken - a sentence
which defiled and became a physical law of his being, and was transmitted
to all his posterity.
(Genesis 3:15-19, 22-23; II Corinthians 1:9; Romans 7:24; II Corinthians 5:2-4; Romans 7:18-23; Galatians 5:16-17; Romans 6:12; 7:21; John 3:6; Romans 5:12; I Corinthians 15:22; Psalm 51:5 Job 14:4).
- That God, in His kindness, conceived a plan of restoration which, without
setting aside His just and necessary law of sin and death, should ultimately
rescue the race from destruction, and people the earth with sinless immortals.
(Revelation 21:4; John 3:16; II Timothy 1:10; I John 2:25; II Timothy 1:1; Titus 1:2; Romans 3:26; John 1:29).
- That He inaugurated this plan by making promises to Adam, Abraham, and
David, and afterwards elaborated it in greater detail through the prophets.
(Genesis 3:15; 22:18; Psalm 89:34-37; 33:5; Hosea 13:14; Isaiah 25:7-9; 51:1-8; Jeremiah 23:5).
- That these promises had reference to Jesus Christ, who was to be raised
up in the condemned line of Abraham and David, and who, though bearing their
condemned nature, was to obtain a title to resurrection by perfect obedience,
and, by dying, abrogate the law of condemnation for himself and all who
should believe and obey him.
(I Corinthians 15:45; Hebrews 2:14-16; Romans 1:3; Hebrews 5:8-9; 1:9; Romans 5:19-21; Galatians 4:4-5; Romans 8:3-4; Hebrews 2:15; 9:26; Galatians 1:4; Hebrews 7:27; 5:3-7; 2:17; Romans 6:10; 6:9; Acts 13:34-37; Revelation 1:18; John 5:21-22, 26, 27; 14:3; Revelation 2:7; 3:21; Matthew 25:21; Hebrews 5:9; Mark 16:16; Acts 13:38-39; Romans 3:22; Psalm 2:6-9; Daniel 7:13-14; Revelation 11:15; Jeremiah 23:5; Zechariah 25:9; Ephesians 1:9-10).
- That it was this mission that necessitated the miraculous begettal of
Christ of a human mother, enabling him to bear our condemnation and, at
the same time, to be a sinless bearer thereof, and, therefore, one who could
rise after suffering the death required by the righteousness of God.
(Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-35; Galatians 4:4; Isaiah 7:14 Romans 1:3-4; 8:3; II Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 2:17; 4:15).
- That being so begotten of God and inhabited and used by God through
the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, Jesus was Immanuel, God with us, God
manifest in the flesh - yet was, during his natural life, of like nature
with mortal man, being made of a woman, of the house and lineage of David,
and therefore a sufferer, in the days of his flesh, from all the effects
that came by Adam's transgression, including the death that passed upon
all men, which he shared by partaking of their physical nature.
(Matthew 1:23; I Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 2:14; Galatians 4:4; Hebrews 2:17).
- That the message he delivered from God to his kinsmen, the Jews, was
a call to repentance from every evil work, the assertion of his divine sonship
and Jewish kingship; and the proclamation of the glad tidings that God would
restore their kingdom through him, and accomplish all things written in
(Mark 1:15; Matthew 4:17; 5:20-48; John 10:36; 9:35; 11:27; 19:21; 1:49; Matthew 27:11-42; John 10:24-25; Matthew 19:28; 21:42-43; 23:38-39; 25:14 to the end; Luke 4:43; 13:27-30; 19:11-27; 22:28-30; Matthew 5:17; Luke 24:44).
- That for delivering this message, he was put to death by the Jews and
Romans, who were, however, but instruments in the hands of God, for the
doing of that which He had determined before to be done - viz., the condemnation
of sin in the flesh, through the offering of the body of Jesus once for
all, as a propitiation to declare the righteousness of God, as a basis for
the remission of sins. All who approach God through this crucified, but
risen, representative of Adam's disobedient race, are forgiven. Therefore,
by a figure, his blood cleanses from sin.
(Luke 19:47; 20:1-26; John 11:45-53; Acts 10:38-39; 13:26-29; 9:27-28; Romans 8:3; Hebrews 10:10; Romans 3:25; Acts 13:38; I John 1:7; John 14:6; Acts 4:12; I Peter 3:18; 2:24; Hebrews 19:14; 7:27; 9:26-29; Galatians 1:4; Romans 3:25; 15:8; Galatians 3:21-22; 2:21; 4:4-5; Hebrews 9:15; Luke 22:20; 24:26, 46-47; Matthew 26:28).
- That on the third day, God raised him from the dead, and exalted him
to the heavens as priestly mediator between God and man, in the process
of gathering from among them a people who should be saved by the belief
and obedience of the Truth.
(I Corinthians 15:4; Acts 10:40; 13:30-37; 2:24-27; 4:27).
- That he is a priest over his own house only, and does not intercede
for the world, or for professors who are abandoned to disobedience. That
he makes intercession for his erring brethren, if they confess and forsake
(Luke 24:51; Ephesians 1:20; Acts 5:31; I Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 8:1; Acts 15:14; 13:39; Hebrews 4:14-15; John 17:9; Hebrews 10:26; I John 2:1; Proverbs 27:13).
- That he sent forth his apostles to proclaim salvation through him, as
the only name given under heaven whereby men may be saved.
(Acts 1:8; Matthew 28:19-20; Luke 24:46-48; Acts 26:16-18; 4:12).
- That the way to obtain this salvation is to believe the Gospel they
preached, and to take on the name and service of Christ, by being thereupon
immersed in water, and continuing patiently in the observance of all things
he has commanded, none being recognized as his friends except those who
do what he has commanded.
(Acts 13:48; 16:31; Mark 16:16; Romans 1:16; Acts 2:38, 41; 10:47; 8:12; Galatians 3:27-29; Romans 6:3-5; 2:7; Matthew 27:20; John 25:14).
- That the Gospel consists of "the things concerning the kingdom of God
and the name of Jesus Christ".
(Acts 8:12; 19:8, 10, 20; 28:30-31).
- That the Things of the Kingdom of God are the facts testified concerning the Kingdom of God in the writings of the Prophets and Apostles, and definable as in the next twelve paragraphs.
- That God will set up a Kingdom in the earth, which will overthrow all
others, and change them into "the kingdoms of our Lord and His Christ".
(Daniel 2:44; 7:13-14; Revelation 11:15; Isaiah 32:1, 6; 2:3-4; 11:9-10).
- That for this purpose God will send Jesus Christ personally to the earth
at the close of the Times of the Gentiles.
(Acts 3:20-21; Psalm 102:16, 21; II Timothy. 4:1; Acts 1: 9, 11; Daniel 7:13).
- That the Kingdom which he will establish will be the Kingdom of Israel
restored, in the territory it formerly occupied, viz., the land bequeathed
for an everlasting possession to Abraham and his seed (the Christ) by covenant.
(Micah 4:6-8; Amos 9:11, 15; Ezekiel 37:21, 22; Jeremiah 23:3, 8; Genesis 13:14, 17; Hebrews 11:8-9; Galatians 3:16; Leviticus 26:42; Micah 7:20).
- That this restoration of the kingdom again to Israel will involve the
ingathering of God's chosen but scattered nation, the Jews; their re-instatement
in the land of their fathers, when it shall have been re-claimed from "the
desolation of many generations"; the building again of Jerusalem to become
"the throne of the Lord" and the metropolis of the whole earth.
(Isaiah 11:12; Jeremiah 31:10; Zechariah 8:8; Ezekiel 36:36; Isaiah 51:3; 60:15; 62:4; Jeremiah 3:17; Micah 4:7, Joel 3:17; Isaiah 24:23).
- That the governing body of the Kingdom so established will be the brethren
of Christ, of all generations, developed by resurrection and change, and
constituting, with Christ as their head, the collective "seed of Abraham,"
in whom all nations will be blessed, and comprising "Abraham, Isaac, and
Jacob, and all the prophets," and all in their age of like faithfulness.
(Daniel 12:2; Luke 13:28; Revelation 11:18; I Thessalonians 4:15-17; John 5:28-29; 6:39-40; Luke 14:14; Matthew 25:34, 36).
- That at the appearing of Christ prior to the establishment of the Kingdom,
the responsible (namely those who know the revealed will of God, and have
been called upon to submit to it), dead and living - obedient and disobedient
- will be summoned before his judgment Seat "to be judged according to their
works"; and "receive in body according to what they have done, whether it
be good or bad".
(II Corinthians 5:10; II Timothy 4:1; Romans 2:5-6, 16; 14:10-12; I Corinthians 4:5; Revelation 11:18).
- That the unfaithful will be consigned to shame and "the second death,"
and the faithful invested with immortality, and exalted to reign with Jesus
as joint heir of the Kingdom, co-possessors of the earth, and joint administrators
of God's authority among men in everything.
(Matthew 7:26; 8:12; 25:20; Daniel 12.2; Galatians 1:8; 5:21; II Thessalonians 1:8; Hebrews 10:26-28; II Peter 2:12; Revelation 21:8; Malachi 4:1; Psalm 37:30-38; Proverbs 10:25-29; I Corinthians 15:51-55; II Corinthians 5:1-4; James 1:12; Romans 2:7; John 10:28; Matthew 5:5; Psalm 37:9, 22, 29; Revelation 5:9; Daniel 7:27; I Thessalonians 2:12; 2 Pet 1:11; Revelation 3:21; II Timothy 2:12; Revelation 5:10; Psalm 49:7-9; Luke 22:29-30).
- That the Kingdom of God, thus constituted, will continue a thousand
years, during which sin and death will continue among the earth's subject
inhabitants, though in a much milder degree than now.
(Revelation 20:7-9; 12:15; Isaiah 65:20; Ezekiel 44:25; I Corinthians 15:24, 29).
- That a law will be established which shall go forth to the nations for
their "instruction in righteousness," resulting in the abolition of war
to the ends of the earth, and the "filling of the earth with the knowledge
of the glory of Jehovah, as the waters cover the sea".
(Micah 4:2; Isaiah 42:4; 11:2-5; 2:4; Habakkuk 2:14).
- That the mission of the Kingdom will be to subdue all enemies, and finally
death itself, by opening up the way of life to the nations, which they will
enter by faith, during the thousand years, and (in reality) at their close.
(I Corinthians 15:25-26; Revelation 21:4; 20:12-15; Isaiah 25:6-8).
- That at the close of the thousand years, there will be a general resurrection
and judgment, resulting in the final extinction of the wicked, and the immortalization
of those who shall have established their title (under the grace of God)
to eternal life during the thousand years.
(Revelation 20:11-15; I Corinthians 15:24).
- That the Government will then be delivered up by Jesus to the Father,
who will manifest Himself as the "All-in-All"; sin and death having been
taken out of the way, and the race completely restored to the friendship
of the Deity.
(I Corinthians 15:28).
It is further believed that:
- Suing at law for the enforcement of any right whatsoever, including divorce, is contrary to the teaching of Christ, and is therefore to be shunned by all his brethren and sisters;
- A brother or sister of Christ who, being divorced after becoming responsible to the law of Christ, takes another husband or wife during the lifetime of the former partner commits adultery; and in such circumstances no profession of repentance can be recognised while the sinful alliance continues.
- An applicant for immersion who is legally married should be accepted (notwithstanding the annulment of any previous marriage) subject to a good confession of an undertaking by the applicant thenceforward to uphold the law of Christ in this as in all other respects.
- Fellowship will not knowingly be extended to any who hold views contrary to the foregoing Statement, or who, although themselves not holding contrary views, are prepared to fellowship those who do so.
- That the Bible is only partly the work of Inspiration - or if wholly so, contains errors which Inspiration has allowed.
- That God is three persons.
- That the Son of God was co-eternal with the Father.
- That Christ was born with a "free life."
- That Christ's nature was immaculate.
- That the Holy Spirit is a person distinct from the Father.
- That man has an immortal soul.
- That man consciously exists in death.
- That the wicked will suffer eternal torture in hell.
- That the righteous will ascend to kingdoms beyond the skies when they die.
- That the devil is a supernatural personal being.
- That the Kingdom of God is "the church."
- That the Gospel is the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ merely.
- That Christ will not come until the close of the thousand years.
- That the tribunal of Christ, when he comes, is not for the judgment of saints, but merely to divide among them different degrees of reward.
- That the resurrection is confined to the faithful.
- That the dead rise in an immortal state.
- That the subject-nations of the thousand years are immortal.
- That the Law of Moses is binding on believers of the Gospel.
- That the observance of Sunday is a matter of duty.
- That baby-sprinkling is a doctrine of Scripture.
- That "heathens," idiots, pagans, and very young children will be saved.
- That man can be saved by morality or sincerity, without the Gospel.
- That the Gospel alone will save, without the obedience of Christ's commandments.
- That a man cannot believe without possessing the Spirit of God.
- That men are predestined to salvation unconditionally.
- That there is no sin in the flesh.
- That Joseph was the actual father of Jesus.
- That the earth will be destroyed.
- That baptism is not necessary to salvation.
- That a knowledge of The Truth is not necessary to make baptism valid.
- That some meats are to be refused on the score of uncleanness.
- That the English are the Ten Tribes of Israel whose prosperity is a fulfillment of the promises made concerning Ephraim.
- That marriage with an unbeliever is lawful.
- That we are at liberty to serve in the army, the Constabulary, take part in politics, or recover debts by legal coercion.