What Christadelphians Believe
Christadelphians are a community of believers found all over the world and although their name has only been used in the last 150 years, their beliefs were those preached by the Apostles, 2000 years ago.
The name 'Christadelphian' means: 'Brothers in Christ' describing both men and women who believe 'things concerning the Kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ'. In particular Christadelphians believe in the following:
Bible - That the Bible is the only true message from God and was entirely given by him. It is sufficient to teach men and women the way of life, being a self-revelation of the thoughts of God. It is in part literal and part symbolic - as defined by the text and providing a logical and reasonable explanation of creation and life upon planet earth. Christadelphians do not believe that any of their members, past or present, have received any special revelation direct from God. They base their faith solely on the Bible as the Word of God. ".. all Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness". (2 Timothy 3:16) and that "holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit". (2 Peter 1:21)
God - That God exists as a being with power and personality. That he has a specific location in heaven with the angels his messengers. That he is the creator of the heavens, the earth, and all life on the earth including humankind. That he is the father of Jesus Christ and that he has a purpose for his Son to reign on earth at a time yet future.
God is all powerful, he does not share his power with any sinful being who is opposed to his ways. (Satan is a term which refers to 'adversary' or 'an enemy' and can refer to good and bad people, figuratively, the terms the devil and satan can refer to sin and the flesh).
Holy Spirit - That God's Spirit refers to his breath and power through which he has achieved all things and is everywhere present. It is Holy because it is 'of God' and used by him for specific activities - revelation of his thoughts, conception of his Son, establishment of the early Christian community and the guidance of nations and individuals to achieve his purpose. It is always his power, never man's - in the past men possessed that power to heal and to teach at the direction of God. They were specifically given that power for 'a season', which was subsequently withdrawn. Today, God's power is now revealed to us in His word "you received the word of God ... which also effectually works in you that believe." (1 Thessalonians 2:13)
Sin & Death -That in the beginning, God created man and woman and placed them in a 'garden', where they were tempted by a literal serpent. They failed the test. They were judged guilty by God and punished. The resultant 'nature' of humankind has been inherited by all without exception, in other words:- man is mortal, prone to sin and cursed as a result of Adam's sin. ".. through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned." (Romans 5:12)
Sin in the life of individuals is as the result of this inherited nature and not because of a supernatural devil or satan seeking to entice men and women away from God; "Each man is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desire and enticed. Then when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin and sin when it is full grown, brings forth death." (James 1:14-15) Man is therefore a dying creature - he returns to dust. His soul, life or disposition ceases to exist - it perishes in the ground. The only hope of life is resurrection for the believer, at the return of Christ.
Promises & Prophecies - That the Gospel was preached in the form of promises made to the Jewish Fathers. The seed of the woman described in the judgements of God to the serpent refer to Christ. Promises given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the Jewish fathers, and to King David all ultimately refer to Christ and to believers 'in Christ'. The Old Testament contains this information together with teaching about Israel and the affairs of the world - particularly with reference to the time of the second coming of Christ. It is therefore important in providing us with this valuable information and should be read and studied.
Jesus Christ - That Jesus Christ was born of the virgin Mary, who was an ordinary woman of human nature. Jesus did not pre-exist nor was he the second person of the trinity. He was the Son of God, conceived by the power of God but inheriting a human nature from his mother. He was tempted yet was sinless. He died on a cross as a sacrifice for sins, as our representative not as our substitute. He was raised from the grave and given immortality by his father. He ascended to heaven where to the right hand of the father until he returns to the earth at his second coming. He is now the only mediator between men and God, prayer is made through Jesus to the father and forgiveness is obtained from him. There is therefore no need of human priests and pastors - all male baptised believers can pray and lead worship. Christ is our Priest and him alone.
Second Coming - That Jesus Christ is to return from heaven to earth to establish the Kingdom of God. "Then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory." (Luke 21:27) Originally, the people of Israel were the kingdom of God on earth. The people and the land of Israel were destined for a unique work. They failed their responsibilities and their status was temporarily suspended. After centuries of dispersion and suffering, the people of Israel have returned to their land, yet in unbelief. This is the key event in the divine timetable for the return of Jesus Christ. However, there is also clear teaching in Bible prophesy that Israel will suffer a final invasion in order to achieve repentance, that finally Israel might be God's land and God's people. It will be at this time that Christ will return from heaven, raise the dead, judge those responsible and give immortality. Christ will reign for 1000 years, establishing peace and goodness, a new world order and a new civilisation.
Salvation - That salvation is the gift of God given to those men and women who are obedient to his commandments, the first of which is to 'Repent and be Baptised'. Belief and baptism allow us to share in the promises given to Abraham and in the future age described in Bible prophesy. It allows the forgiveness of sins and the possibility of resurrection and eternal life.
Baptism - That baptism is total immersion in water of an adult who knows the Gospel followed by a life of discipleship. Baptism is a symbolic death in water and a 'resurrection' to a new life as a son or daughter of God with new brothers and sisters in the family of believers. This symbolic death and resurrection enables disciples to have faith that even if they literally die, they will be raised from death when Jesus returns and have a hope of eternal life in the Kingdom of God.
Discipleship - That following baptism, a believer must make a reasonable attempt to obey the teaching of Christ and the Apostles by developing Christ-like characteristics and lifestyle. Baptised believers have a duty to meet with other brothers and sisters of similar belief - to regularly break bread and drink wine in memory of Christ's sacrifice. To pray, read and study the Bible together and to preach the Gospel to others.
Unless other people hold the same beliefs as outlined above, we are not at liberty to worship and share in fellowship with them. Those who cease to believe or practice the truth as defined and described in the Bible cease to be in fellowship with the body of true believers.
Organisation - Christadelphians are a community of ordinary men and women who have read the Bible, believe its teaching and try to obey its demands. We do not have any central authority or committee structure, we seek to hold faith without distinction as to race or class, and without bishops or clergy, we worship and witness in a simple and consistent way. We do not observe any day or feasts other than the breaking of bread each week, nor do we practice rituals other than baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We believe in a lifestyle which reflects our faith - marriage and family life are important, care for those in need and a commitment to sound principles in all aspects of life will hopefully characterise our discipleship.
Christadelphians do not become involved in politics and associated activities as they see themselves as temporary citizens of this world - responsible and law-abiding but believing that the present constitution is temporary and that involvement in such organisation is incompatible with the hope of the coming Kingdom.
Christadelphians are committed to Bible reading and study, to prayer and to fellowship. To preaching and preparation for the return of Jesus Christ. We ask you to consider these things that you may also share in our fellowship by belief, baptism and a 'new life in Christ' to enable you to prepare for the return of Jesus from heaven to earth.