Our Guiding Principles
Our three essential beliefs are listed on the page “What We Believe“. Please read that first. If we’ve lost you on those three points, the added material here is perhaps not yet of use to you (but of course, by all means continue reading).
In the happy hope you’re still with us, and just like how there are approximately 785,000 words in the Bible (we’ve a lengthy discussion about how many words in the Bible here) which of course provide information on much more than the three essential beliefs, we’d like to share some more of the principles we take from the Bible and use to guide us in our worship and our lives.
We’d like to also explain, up front, that we are an open and welcoming group. No matter what your flavor of Christianity, if you have accepted Jesus Christ into your heart, then we’re delighted to meet you here today. If you’re good enough for Him, you’re definitely more than good enough for us. 🙂
Because the Bible contains history as well as teaching material, some people stumble over what currently applies, and what remaining relevance past and now waived requirements might still have. The New Testament makes it clear that neither Jesus, his Father, nor the early disciples stressed over the minor details of how we practice and profess our faith. The days of the strict Jewish Law were ended with Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.
However, that isn’t to say we should now ignore the guidance offered to us in both Testaments as to how we should live our lives, and how we should follow the Lord. But we feel it truly does mean that some of the varying elements in different branches of the Christian Church should be considered minor differences and not become schisms that separate us, because they are probably not issues that threaten our salvation. Catholic or Charismatic, Evangelist or Episcopalian, Pentecostal or Presbyterian, as long as we’ve accepted Jesus Christ as our personal savior, God’s love and our salvation is essentially assured. (Note that some sources believe that a more complete and exact compliance with the teachings in the New Testament is required. We will attempt to discuss this in a future separate article. For now, may we say that we encourage you to be the best follower of Christ and his teachings you can be, and for sure, ensure you have accepted Christ into your heart and soul.)
One Over-arching Principle
Before we start to list our principles, there is one over-arching consideration you should keep in mind. We are the same as you in God’s eyes. We do not claim to have any special gift or insight into His Word.
We wish to help you worship Him. We do not want you to worship us, and we feel anxious when we see Christian groups with substantial focus on their earthly leaders; we fear that focus may dilute their focus on their Heavenly Leader.
No matter how we phrase our thoughts, we are always merely suggesting, never mandating. It is possible we may be wrong about any thing and about many things. We wish to be humble before God and before you, too.
We May be Mistaken
We have prayerfully and carefully created the material on this website. But we may be mistaken. The same is true of other (and, in some cases, to our surprised and dismay, much more learned) authorities, too, and we urge you always to consider all teaching with an open mind and with prayers for guidance from the Lord.
In particular we are very concerned that our good intentions may cause us to transgress the clear prohibitions in Proverbs 30:5-6, and similarly cited elsewhere in both Testaments. That is never our intention, and we discuss this matter separately, here (page to be published shortly).
If you feel something is wrong, let us know. Perhaps we simply failed to clearly express our thoughts, and perhaps we are indeed utterly wrong. With your help, together we can continue to clarify all these things.
And, if after the shared study and discussion between us, we still disagree, that is okay (and if we feel there to be two or more possible opinions on a matter, we’re happy to add your alternative view alongside our own).
As long as we share our three core beliefs, these other matters should not divide us. Some counts suggest there to be over 50,000 different types of Christian faith currently being practiced in churches around the world, and while we’re delighted to see the rich tapestry of different versions of faith being expressed, it is also slightly anarchistic to have so many different churches struggling separately when we could all be so much stronger, together.
However, a blessing of Christianity is its open and welcoming nature. The chances are there are other people who share your thoughts and interpretation – find them and enjoy fellowship with them, and please, remain our friends, too, just as we wish to remain your friends, also.
Seven Top Level Principles
- Christian people live according to the teachings in the New Testament and more generally those of the Old Testament, and in particular the Ten Commandments. Being Christian is positive, enjoyable, and life enhancing. A Christian faith is incomplete without Christian “works” that flow from that faith.
- That which is not specifically excluded or forbidden is permitted as long as it resides within a good sense interpretation of the totality of the teachings in the Bible.
- God’s teachings are fully contained within the 66 books of the Bible. No other documents exist as records of additional teachings or modifying these 66 books of the Bible.
- God does not seek to hide his teachings or make it hard for us to follow them. They are what they are and should primarily be accepted at face value.
- God speaks directly to us. Priests/pastors/ministers can assist us in our faith, but should never stand between us and our personal direct relationships with God.
- Worshipping God is simple and needs no formal ceremonies, no creeds, rituals or traditions, and no priests to validate our worship. But men may find such things assist them in their connection with God and so, while not essential, are permitted as long as they positively help people commune with God rather than provide obstacles and interferences.
- We understand that some people and Christian churches have specific beliefs and requirements or prohibitions as part of observing their faith. We respect such variations, as long as their teachings do not interfere with the three core beliefs of our Church, and as long as they encourage their followers in their faith. While we advocate church unity, we accept the presence of all bona fide churches as beneficial and helping the Lord’s work.
There is more. Please now click on to the next page in this series for more guiding principles on how to lead a good Christian life.