BUILDING UP THE BROTHERHOOD

FUNDAMENTAL BELIEFS FOR A LIVING TRUTH

August 29, 2012

     

 

    Beliefs, in the religious context, are defined as a formulation of creeds which a certain group may agree upon as a common religious attitude.  They serve to define a group of people as separate the distinct from another group with a different set of beliefs.  Beliefs are specific and easily articulated.  

    Beliefs are different from faith in many ways.  Beliefs may become group possessions, but faith must be personal.  Beliefs can be suggested to a group, but faith can rise up only in the heart of the individual.  Beliefs are limiting and binding; faith is expanding and releasing.  Beliefs fixates, faith liberates. 

     Beliefs are statements about something.  In religion, beliefs are statements about God and about things related to God.  They consist of ideas about who God is, what He purposes, what He wants, what He expects, and what He will do.  Beliefs are descriptive of ideas.  Whereas faith is an experience of the ideal of God – the relationship to His eternal essence, the heart motivation of a worshipful attitude toward God.  Beliefs are known, faith is lived. 

    Though beliefs are not the same as faith, beliefs are on the pathway to faith:  knowledge leads to beliefs; beliefs lead to actions; and actions create the experiences from which a living faith is derived.  So, in spite of its weakness, beliefs can foster religious unity and fraternal support if they support divine ideals rather than human ideas.  

    As we have published many times, we are not seeking followers, nor are we seeking to establish a new sect – there are enough sects of Christianity, but not enough spirit-oriented Christians.  We do, however, believe it will be beneficial to share with our readers the fundamental beliefs held by the authors of this site so as to provide a clearer picture of who we are.  To that end, we developed a Statement of nine beliefs upon which the information on this website is based.  This Statement is also published in the section About Us.

    We propose that if Christianity can agree on a few fundamental beliefs, we can build a united God-oriented society of spiritual brothers and sisters who will have the credibility necessary to attract the remainder of mankind to the glorious worship of our Father in heaven.  

 

OUR STATEMENT OF FUNDAMENTAL BELIEFS

 

1. God, as the Original and First source of everything in existence, is the Father of every man; therefore all men are brothers.    

 

    This statement sets forth three ideas: (1) that God is the Original and First Source of all creation; (2) that God chooses to express himself as a Father; (3) and consequently that all men are brothers.    

 

(1)  We first refer to God as the Original and First Source because all things originate from him:

 

Of course, every house is constructed by someone, but he that constructed all things is God.”

 Hebrew 3:4

 

    A controversy exists as to whether God is a personality or a non-personal force. We resolve this conflict by recognizing the Original and First Source is both personal and non-personal, depending on how He chooses to manifest Himself. When He acts in relation to His intelligent creations, He personalizes a God.  For only personalities can communicate with personalities.  A man cannot communicate with a chair.      

 

    However, when the Original and First Source acts in relation to His non-personal creations, such as planets, stars, gravity, energy, etc., He acts non-personally as a force, for He is also the controller and upholder of the universe.  Science has only discovered this aspect of God – the only aspect that can be reached by a scientific examination.          

 

    Thus, we learn that while God is a personal God, He is so much more.  How much more, though, is as yet unrevealed.  But we can be confident that God will reveal as much of Himself as is needed for us to draw close to Him and love Him as He loves us.   

 

(2)  Jesus revealed that the personal God chooses to reveal himself to man as a loving Father.  

 

Moreover, do not call anyone your father on earth, for one is your Father, the heavenly One.”

 Matthew 23:9

 

All things have been delivered to me by my Father, and no one fully knows the Son but the Father, neither does anyone fully know the Father but the Son and anyone to whom the Son is willing to reveal him.”

– Matthew 11:27

 

If you men had known me, you would have known my Father also; from this moment on you know him and have seen him.”  Philip said to him: “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.”  Jesus said to him: “Have I been with you men so long a time, and yet, Philip, you have not come to know me? He that has seen me has seen the Father [also]. How is it you say, ‘Show us the Father’? ’”

– John 14:7-9

 

    We are also told:

 

He that does not love has not come to know God, because God is love.”

1 John 4:8

 

    As a God of love, He is so much more than a ruler, judge or lawgiver.  Consistent with His very nature, He wants us to relate to Him as would trusting and loving children.      

 

(3)    Since God is our Father, it naturally follows that we are all brothers:

 

But you, do not you be called Rabbi, for one is your teacher, whereas all you are brothers.”

 Matthew 23:8

 

  The brotherhood of man is universal; it is not limited to people with similar beliefs, or similar race or nationality.  It is the inherent relation of all of mankind. 

 

And God proceeded to create the man in his image, in God’s image he created him; male and female he created them.”

– Genesis 1:27 

   

2. The Christ, who incarnated as Jesus of Nazareth, is the begotten Son of God, the Creator of our Universe, the head of the Christian congregation, and the elder brother of all mankind. 

 

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; because by means of him all [other] things were created in the heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordships or governments or authorities. All [other] things have been created through him and for him. Also, he is before all [other] things and by means of him all [other] things were made to exist, and he is the head of the body, the congregation. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that he might become the one who is first in all things.”

 Colossians 1:15-18

 

If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ, provided we suffer together that we may also be glorified together.”

 Romans 8:17

 

    The Bible tells us that Christ, who incarnated as Jesus of Nazareth, was the firstborn creation of God the Father, and was given authority to create all other things.  So, while Christianity has come to “own” Jesus of Nazareth as its personal savior, the truth is that Jesus is the creator and savior of all of mankind – those who choose to follow him, as well as those who have not yet made that choice.      

 

    Christ Jesus was not just a prophet or a wise man or a progenitor of one religion. He has a divine relationship with all mankind – Jew, Muslim, Buddhist, Sikh, the various tribal and aboriginal people, even atheists and agnostics. By the Father’s will, all mankind owes its existence and survival potential to and through the Christ.

 

3. A fragment of the Spirit of God dwells within the minds of each of us and it is the means by which we commune with the Father. 

 

Do you not know that you people are God’s temple, and that the spirit of God dwells in you?  If anyone destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him; for the temple of God is holy, which [temple] you people are.”

1 Corinthians 3:16-17

 

For you have been given a new birth, not by corruptible, but by incorruptible [reproductive] seed, through the word of [the] living and enduring God.”

– 1 Peter 1:23

 

You, however, when you pray, go into your private room and, after shutting your door, pray to your Father who is in secret; then your Father who looks on in secret will repay you.  But when praying, do not say the same things over and over again, just as the people of the nations do, for they imagine they will get a hearing for their use of many words.  So, do not make yourselves like them, for God your Father knows what things you are needing before ever you ask him.”

 Matthew 6:6-8

 

Do not two sparrows sell for a coin of small value? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father’s [knowledge]. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.  Therefore have no fear: you are worth more than many sparrows.”

– Matthew 10:29-31

 

    Though the Father has subjected all things to the authority of the Christ, He maintains His ultimate creator prerogative of direct communication with His sons. It is this Spirit that returns to the Father at our mortal death.

 

Then the dust returns to the earth just as it happened to be and the spirit itself returns to the [true] God who gave it.”

 Ecclesiastes 12:7

 

4. From the beginning, the Father purposed to adopt earthling man as His spirit sons and daughters in His heavenly kingdom after their earthly career is complete.  The default of Adam and Eve did not change the Father's purpose.

 

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for he has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in union with Christ, just as he chose us in union with him before the founding of the world, that we should be holy and without blemish before him in love. For he foreordained us to the adoption through Jesus Christ as sons to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.”

 Ephesians 1:3-5

 

“For just as in Adam all are dying, so also in the Christ all will be made alive.”

– 1 Corinthians 15:22

 

It is even so written: ‘The first man Adam became a living soul.’ The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.  Nevertheless, the first is, not that which is spiritual, but that which is physical, afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is out of the earth and made of dust; the second man is out of heaven.  As the one made of dust [is], so those made of dust [are] also; and as the heavenly one [is], so those who are heavenly [are] also.  And just as we have borne the image of the one made of dust, we shall bear also the image of the heavenly one.

– 1 Corinthians 15:45-49

 

For the eager expectation of the creation is waiting for the revealing of the sons of God.  For the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own will but through him that subjected it, on the basis of hope that the creation itself also will be set free from enslavement to corruption and have the glorious freedom of the children of God.  For we know that all creation keeps on groaning together and being in pain together until now.  Not only that, but we ourselves also who have the firstfruits, namely, the spirit, yes, we ourselves groan within ourselves, while we are earnestly waiting for adoption as sons, the release from our bodies by ransom.”

Romans 8:19-23    

 

5. The Spirit of Truth poured out by Christ stimulates the Father’s indwelling Spirit and bears witness, or confirms, to us that we are children of God, and guides us individually into all truth. 

 

The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children. If, then, we are children, we are also heirs: heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ, provided we suffer together that we may also be glorified together.”

 Romans 8:16-17

 

I have many things yet to say to you, but you are not able to bear them at present. However, when that one arrives, the spirit of the truth, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak of his own impulse, but what things he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things coming.”

– John 16:12-13

 

    We have the written record of the Hebrews’ interaction with and interpretation of God, as well as the written record of Jesus’ teachings and earthly sojourn which serve as a foundation for comprehending the Father and His purposes. The additional spirit influences serve to guide mankind deeper in their search for the Father, for truth and for our true identity. When we subject ourselves to the Father’s Spirit and the Sprit of Truth we are truly spirit led. (Romans 8:14)

 

6. The Kingdom of God on earth is the spiritual brotherhood of every person who recognizes he or she is a child of God. 

 

But on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was coming, he answered them and said: “The kingdom of God is not coming with striking observableness, neither will people be saying, ‘See here!’ or, ‘There!’ For, look! the kingdom of God is in your midst.”

– Luke 17:20-21

 

Jesus answered: “My kingdom is no part of this world. If my kingdom were part of this world, my attendants would have fought that I should not be delivered up to the Jews. But, as it is, my kingdom is not from this source.

– John 18:36

 

He delivered us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of his love, by means of whom we have our release by ransom, the forgiveness of our sins.”

– Colossians 1:13-14

 

As for us, our citizenship exists in the heavens, from which place also we are eagerly waiting for a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will refashion our humiliated body to be conformed to his glorious body according to the operation of the power that he has, even to subject all things to himself.”

 Philippians 3:20-21

 

    Though many view the Kingdom as a government, Jesus explained that the Kingdom is no part of this world, that it is already in our midst, and that many had already been transferred into it while still alive on earth as far back as the first century.   

 

    We can enter the earthly realm of the Kingdom now as faith-sons of God.  And after our death, we enter into the heavenly realm of the Kingdom brotherhood where our true citizenship lies. 

 

7. The Father wants all of his children to begin the heavenly spiritual ascent toward Him after they complete their time on earth. 

 

Stop storing up for yourselves treasures upon the earth, where moth and rust consume, and where thieves break in and steal. Rather, store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes, and where thieves do not break in and steal.  For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

– Matthew 6:19-21

 

For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, should be dissolved, we are to have a building from God, a house not made with hands, everlasting in the heavens.  For in this dwelling house we do indeed groan, earnestly desiring to put on the one for us from heaven.”

– 2 Corinthians 5:1-5

 

I am pursuing down toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God by means of Christ Jesus.  Let us, then, as many of us as are mature, be of this mental attitude; and if you are mentally inclined otherwise in any respect, God will reveal the above [attitude] to you.

 Philippians 3:14-15

 

As for us, our citizenship exists in the heavens, from which place also we are eagerly waiting for a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will refashion our humiliated body to be conformed to his glorious body according to the operation of the power that he has, even to subject all things to himself.”

– Philippians 3:20-21

 

“We thank God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ always when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in connection with Christ Jesus and the love you have for all the holy ones because of the hope that is being reserved for you in the heavens. This [hope] you heard of before by telling of the truth of that good news which has presented itself to you, even as it is bearing fruit and increasing in all the world just as [it is doing] also among you, from the day you heard and accurately knew the undeserved kindness of God in truth.” 

– Colossians 1:3-6

 

If, however, you were raised up with the Christ, go on seeking the things above, where the Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Keep your minds fixed on the things above not on the things upon the earth.” 

Colossians 3:1-2

        

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for according to his great mercy he gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an incorruptible and undefiled and unfading inheritance.  It is reserved in the heavens for you, who are being safeguarded by God’s power through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last period of time.”

 – 1 Peter 1:3-5

 

8. The law of the Kingdom of God is: You must love God with your whole heart, mind and strength, and your neighbor as yourself

 

“‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ He said to him: ‘You must love Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment.  The second, like it, is this, ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments the whole Law hangs, and the Prophets.”

– Matthew 22:36-40

 

9. All who enter the brotherhood of the Kingdom of God on earth are to be ambassadors substituting for Christ with a ministry of reconciling mankind to God so they, too, can begin the heavenly ascent to the Father. 

 

But all things are from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of the reconciliation, namely, that God was by means of Christ reconciling a world to himself, not reckoning to them their trespasses, and he committed the word of the reconciliation to us. We are therefore ambassadors substituting for Christ, as though God were making entreaty through us. As substitutes for Christ we beg: ‘Become reconciled to God.’”

 2 Corinthians 5:18-20

 

Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit, teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you.  And, look! I am with you all the days until the conclusion of the system of things.”

Matthew 28:19-20

 

     The ministry we have been given confirms the truth of the above beliefs:

 

However, now Christ has been raised up from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep [in death]. For since death is through a man, resurrection of the dead is also through a man. For just as in Adam all are dying, so also in the Christ all will be made alive.  But each one in his own rank: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who belong to the Christ during his presence.  Next, the end, when he hands over the kingdom to his God and Father, when he has brought to nothing all government and all authority and power.  For he must rule as king until [God] has put all enemies under his feet.  As the last enemy, death is to be brought to nothing.  For [God] “subjected all things under his feet.” But when he says that ‘all things have been subjected,’ it is evident that it is with the exception of the one who subjected all things to him.  But when all things will have been subjected to him, then the Son himself will also subject himself to the One who subjected all things to him, that God may be all things to everyone.”

1 Corinthians 15:20-28

 

    The ministry of reconciliation is intended to reach ALL mankind, of ALL races, nationalities, religions and beliefs.  It is the Father’s purpose that ALL mankind recognize His universal sovereignty and matchless love, and share in the unimaginable glories He has in store for all of us:

 

But just as it is written: ‘Eye has not seen and ear has not heard, neither have there been conceived in the heart of man the things that God has prepared for those who love him.’”

– 1 Corinthians 2:9

 

    The ministry of reconciliation educates mankind and answers our fundamental and unrelenting question of ‘Why am I here?’

 

Give orders to those who are rich in the present system of things not to be high-minded, and to rest their hope, not on uncertain riches, but on God, who furnishes us all things richly for our enjoyment; to work at good, to be rich in fine works, to be liberal, ready to share, safely treasuring up for themselves a fine foundation for the future, in order that they may get a firm hold on the real life.

 1 Timothy 6:17-19

 

Beyond the Fundamentals

 

    Beyond these fundamental beliefs, the Father allows each group the liberty to make its own rules as to appropriate conduct and behavior according to our national, racial and social heritage, that will serve to facilitate fraternal harmony and social betterment:

 

Truly I say to you men, Whatever things you may bind on earth will be things bound in heaven, and whatever things you may loose on earth will be things loosed in heaven.  Again I truly say to you, If two of you on earth agree concerning anything of importance that they should request, it will take place for them due to my Father in heaven. For where there are two or three gathered together in my name, there I am in their midst.”

 Matthew 18:18-20

 

    Although no man is obligated to keep the Law Covenant mediated by Moses, those laws served as a tutor and can be used as a guide for healthful behavior.

 

Why, then, the Law? It was added to make transgressions manifest, until the seed should arrive to whom the promise had been made; and it was transmitted through angels by the hand of a mediator. Now there is no mediator where only one person is concerned, but God is only one.  Is the Law, therefore, against the promises of God? May that never happen! For if a law had been given that was able to give life, righteousness would actually have been by means of law.  But the Scripture delivered up all things together to the custody of sin, that the promise resulting from faith toward Jesus Christ might be given to those exercising faith.  However, before the faith arrived, we were being guarded under law, being delivered up together into custody, looking to the faith that was destined to be revealed.  Consequently the Law has become our tutor leading to Christ, that we might be declared righteous due to faith. But now that the faith has arrived, we are no longer under a tutor.”

 Galatians 3:19-25

    

In Summary


    With the appearance of the Christ, mankind was freed “from enslavement to corruption and have the glorious freedom of the children of God.” (Romans 8:21) We are no longer under law, but are now under faith – a living faith (Galatians 3:25) with an obligation to love our brothers as we love ourselves.  This freedom is based on the fundamental beliefs that:

  God, the Father, begot a son, the Christ, who, by the Father’s will, is the Creator of our universe. Notwithstanding, the Father maintains personal contact with all His children by means of His indwelling Spirit. The Father has always purposed to adopt His earthling children, first as  faith-sons on earth, and then as spirit sons and daughters in heaven. The error of Adam and Eve only sidetracked and confused mankind; it did not change the Father’s purpose. Christ incarnated as Jesus of Nazareth in order to redirect mankind back to the Father.  After his death, he poured own his own spirit, the Spirit of Truth, to guide us into all truth in his absence, and to awaken the indwelling spirit of the Father so that we all will know that we are God’s children with a hope of being adopted into the heavens as His spirit children.

   All those who recognize their sonship, enter into the spiritual brotherhood, the Kingdom of God on earth. They remain in the Kingdom by loving the Father with their whole soul and loving their brothers as themselves.  And they carry on the work Jesus started, acting as ambassadors in his absence, seeking to reconcile all mankind to the Father so they can share in His original purpose and get a firm hold on “the real life” in the heavenly realm.

   These are the fundamental beliefs upon which a living faith can thrive.  Maintaining these fundamental beliefs allows us to expand our spiritual potential and think outside the box that has trapped and confined so many of our brothers into serving men and judging one another’s faith.  

    These beliefs free us to establish our own associations according to our individual and local needs, while at the same time allow for a united brotherhood – united in the same mind and the same line of thought 
(1 Corinthians 1:10) as respects the important aspects of worship and soul survival.  

    Again, these are our beliefs. We do not intend to impose them on anyone.  But we wholeheartedly share them with everyone. 

    We welcome your comments.  

“Elaia Luchnia”


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