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How did the Christadelphian Community begin?

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In 1832 an English doctor named John Thomas took a ship going to New York because his father wanted to settle in America. The ship ran aground in a violent storm and Dr. Thomas thought that he was going to die. He realised that he knew very little about the future and vowed that if he reached land he would not rest until he had found the truth about life after death. He did reach New York and spent the next fifteen years studying the Bible very carefully and examining the teachings of many Christian groups. When he was sure that he understood the things written in the Old and New Testaments concerning Jesus Christ and the coming Kingdom of God on earth, he arranged to be baptized, by full immersion (going under water completely). He preached in America and Britain, and produced religious magazines and books.

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Among those who believed the same Bible teachings and joined John Thomas in his work was a man called Robert Roberts. He helped to organise the growing number of fellow-believers into local groups or ‘ecclesias’. ‘Ecclesia’ is the Greek word for ‘church’ in the Bible. It means ‘an assembly (gathering) of people who have been called’. Christadelphians prefer to use ‘ecclesia’ instead of ‘church’ because people now think of a church as a building rather than a special group of people.

The name ‘Christadelphian’ was first used in 1864 when the believers in America asked their Government to be excused from joining the army at the time of the American Civil War. A name was needed to identify the believers as a community separate from other churches, and John Thomas chose ‘Christadelphian’. These 19th Century Christadelphians preached in many parts of the world, so that by the end of the century there were groups of believers in many countries.

Christadelphianss are a Bible-based community of believers, patterned after the first century ecclesias (assemblies), who wait for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. 
 
We hold the Bible as completely God inspired and without error, except for some translation and transcription errors. 
 
Our beliefs are different from mainstream Christianity and we urge you to examine why this is so.
 
 A brief summary of our beliefs are listed below.
 
The Bible is the only true message from God and was entirely given by him.
There is only one God, the Father, who made the world and has a great purpose for it.
 
The Holy Spirit is God’s own power; by which He works out His own holy will.
Jesus is the Son of God. He is also Son of man through being born of Mary.
 
Jesus overcame all temptation and died to save his followers from sin and death.
Jesus was raised from the dead by God. Later he ascended to heaven but will return.
 
When he returns he will raise and judge the responsible dead and give immortality to the faithful.
 
He will be King over the restored Kingdom of God in Israel and over the whole world.
His immortalised followers will help him to bring everlasting righteousness and peace worldwide.
 
The devil is not a supernatural being but is another name for sin, destroyed only in Christ.
 
Salvation involves covering from sin through Christ, and freedom from sin and death at his coming.
 
When man dies he ceases to exist. The only hope of life is by the resurrection at Christ’s return.
 
Belief in God’s Promises about the Kingdom of God and the work of Jesus Christ is essential.
 
Repentance and baptism into Christ by immersion in water and daily following of Christ are all necessary for ultimate salvation.
 Here are some short videos you may find helpful to add to your websites.


1 Comment

  1. Ben Gillis

    Thank you for this page to find out more about Christadelphians.

    > the devil
    What about the proper names Lucifer and Satan? What do Christadelphians believe about the being w/ these two names?

    Thank you,
    Ben

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