Wednesday, July 13, 2005


The Christian church has been divided for centuries, almost from the start. Some denominations are more "splintered" than others and Christadelphians are certainly not alone when it comes to schism.

Yet there seems to be something in the Christadelphian psyche which inclines towards divisiveness and this can be incredibly frustrating for those Christadelphians who are working for unity within the brotherhood. The recent failure of the North American Statement of Understanding to bring about reconciliation between the two major N. American fellowships illustrates the point that the traditional Christadelphian way of trying to achieve unity by attempting to convince each other that their point of view is wrong simply doesn't work.

This is just a reflection of the "Christadelphian way". Generally speaking Christadelphians look for differences. In discussions with other Christians Christadelphians will quickly go to the differences. Ask a Christadelphian what they believe and the response will often be "well, we don't believe in the trinity, we don't believe in an immortal soul, we don't believe in a supernatural devil, we don't believe in heaven going, we don't believe in ..." Very often the response will be "well, what do you believe in?!"

I guess this tendency to highlight the differences becomes internalised and Christadelphians look for differences between each other. The result is a whole lot of "fellowships" which all claim to have "the Truth" and refuse to fellowship other Christadelphians, sometimes claiming that the rest are not "real Christadelphians".

I believe this is more than a symptom of a deeper problem. It is a sign that there is something fundamentally wrong with this divisive and negative mentality. The Christadelphian culture has become one of fault-finding and is neither wholesome nor holy in this regard.

Here are some things I'd encourage Christadelphians to do:

- make a conscious and deliberate effort to make friends with non-Christadelphians

- read widely, especially non-Christadelphian Christian books

- keep your mind open to new ideas - accept the possibility that others may be right and you may be wrong

- if you get the opportunity to worship with Christian friends or pray with them take it

- visit other churches - not with the view of criticising or convincing them that they are wrong, but with the view of learning something.

- pray for Christadelphians in other fellowships and Christians in other denominations - not that they will be convinced that they are wrong (and you are right!) but just thank God for what He has done with them and what they are doing for others.

I guarantee that your thinking will start to change, and, incredibly, you will begin to experience a greater degree of personal freedom in Christ.

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