Declaration of independence

To avoid any confusion we would like to state that the Ecclesia Brussel-Leuven is an independent community of brothers and sisters in Christ, who want to share the love of Christ with each other.

We are following Christ Jesus, the Nazarene Jeshua who came on this world to liberate people and not to bring them other chains or handcuffs. We do find we are only accountable to Jehovah God and to His son, Jesus Christ who is the cornerstone of our parish or church community and the Church of God.

In our ecclesia, or church, we do welcome any person who wants to find people who love the Word of God and who want to share the Gospel of the Good News of the coming Kingdom of God.

It does not matter from which denomination you originally come from, or even if you are an atheist. If you wonder what it means to believe or to gather with people who want to share their faith, you are welcome.

The only restriction in our worship and/or communion service or Breaking of the Bread, we let everybody who wants to be present to join the meeting, but only allow scriptural baptised people to take the symbols, or to be partakers of the bread and wine.

For us those welcome at the table of the Lord Jesus Christ are those we consider to have a full immersion in the water of baptism. For us they may be all sorts of Christadelphian people, be it Amended but also Unamended, Christadelphians, or from Central Fellowship, Antipass, Baptised Believers, Baptised Believers in the Kingdom of God, Believers, Berean, Christadelphian BiblestudentsCBM, Carelinks, Christadelphia Associated, Church of the Blessed Hope, Church of God of the Abrahamic Faith, Dawn, Genusa, Logos, Maranatha, Nasu, Nazarene Fellowship, Nazarines (or Nazarenes), Old Paths, Remnant of Christ, Royal Association of Believers, One Way, Pioneer, Republic, Restoration, Suffolk Street fellowship, Xanga Christadelphians and/or Thomasites, they may all join with us in peace to honour our Only One God and Master above all.

It is not because there are so many groups in the community or society of Christadelphians that the should not be considered as being part of one main group. All over the world you shall be able to find Brothers and Sisters in Christ who do feel united under Christ as one body. In the community you also may find groups like Christadelphians for Unity, who do find it important to come to one general united group.

Being aware that the Christadelphian body consists of a number of fellowships – groups of ecclesiae which associate with one another, often to the exclusion of ecclesiae outside their group, we do prefer to find unity by all brothers and sisters in the world. All over the world people may find men and women who do find it much more important to have fellowship with like-minded people under the leadership of the one leader and master-teacher: Jesus Christ the Messiah.
For us it is also very important that we do follow him, Jeshua (Jesus Christ) and try to help each other to go on the right route, the right path to enter the small gate of the Kingdom of God.

We welcome all those Christadelphians from everywhere in the world,who do find it more important that a brother follows Christ’s commandments to be One and love one another in such a way that the world wants to know more about Christ or to solve the mystery of what is the basis of resurrection, than being amended or unamended or to belong to “this” or to an other group. It are men and women who do find it more important to share the same basic believes and to share the Agape-love or the “Love” that only comes from God, and is only given by God, and should be demonstrated perfectly through us, and then only through God.

Being under the peace of Christ it does not mean we should not be warriors in the fight against apathy and ignorance, and that we should let everything pass around us, not reacting on what happens in the world, because we do not be of the world. We should not be part of the world, but that does not mean we should not be conscious that we live in this world and should have to encounter the rules, regulations and have to face the events  or happenings in this world. for us every individual has to take his own responsibility in that world and has to find their own way in it to live according to the commandments of Christ and according to the Commandments of God, which always have to be placed higher than human laws and regulations. For us the Law of God receives first priority above all other laws and regulations.

In this world we are bounded to state and human regulations and as such shall have to form legal associations, societies, non-profit organisations, partnerships, corporations or companies, public limited companies, public corporations, limited companies or other commandite partnerships, be it to arrange all the legal payments for property rent or buying goods. For this reason you also may find such different group names by the Christadelphians, because they do have to find legal ways to be recognised or to pay their bills, because there is no central committee which takes care of that like in many other church-denominations.

In the Christadelphian community we do not like to have an al-overseeing organisation which contribute to itself a papal function. There is no infallible human person or organisation, no special committee which can give her the role of all dictating “Faithful slave” or “faithful and wise servant“, considering itself righteously placed to dictate to everybody what they should follow, believe and what they should do.

We do believe every human person should have the freedom to find his or her way to the Truth, and to follow his or her way to worship the Only One True God. Every human person should have the right to associate with whom whoever he or she feels at ease. Every believer in God should have the right to worship God according his or her way or culture, as long as it does not go against the Commandments and Will of God. As such, for us, there has not to be a set order of service, no set order of songs or sort of music, no prescribed, set text or set order of set texts. Every person in the ecclesia is free to use his or her words to express himself or herself in the way he or she likes to expresses himself or herself, be it speaking, singing or playing any instrument. This always in consideration that there are not done actions which would go in against the Commandments of God.

For us everybody from the brotherhood, should be free to meet by which soever Christadelphian community, and each ecclesia should be able to organise itself on its own. Help from others will always appreciated but controlling organisms may always be considered a threat on independence.

For us there has not to be a special code of dress, like we can find in certain ecclesiae. In respect to their choice we always shall follow their desires when we meet with them, but we shall not appreciate it when others would thrust their code of dress upon our ecclesia. In our ecclesia we allow people to come in casual dress, clothing adapted to the climate. Importunate action will not be liked by us and those willing to force their ideas unto the whole ecclesia should accept that everybody in the ecclesia would receive the right to react in a kind way.

As a community under the guidance of Christ we would like to commit ourselves to the Agape or Love: a love for each other, yes, but even bigger than us. Those coming to our ecclesia we do request to take on an attitude of friendship and brotherly love, but also committing ourselves to a Love for fellow humanity, and a Love for the environment, and a Love for our brothers and sisters in Christ.

For us there should be a strong foundation for a discovery of “Freedom in Christ!” by our attitude we take and by our willingness to associate with all other brothers and sisters in the world, whatever colour of skin, whatever culture they have or may belong to, whatever language they speak. Always should their be respect to the characteristic property of each individual. Each individual character should as such be respected in brotherly love and we shall not allow any organisation to restrict anybody by imposing their own laws.

In our ecclesia we want each individual to be ready for the other, willing to help each other and to love each other as brother and sister.  We would love to see each individual working together with the community to live a life striving to live in the Freedom of Christ. We would not like to have outsiders to be willing to mould every person in a similar figure, for us we would like to have every body appreciating all the differences an other person might have. We do not want a grey bunch of people but a ‘rainbow nation’ and people with their own character happy to live with each other in peace, trying to help each other to grow in the Truth.

The coat of Arms of Belgium with the Motto: “Eendracht maakt macht” = “Strength through Unity” (literally, “Unity makes strength”)

In our ecclesia and in our community in Belgium we allow people to have different ideas. Who is going to say who might be totally right about so many things where there is not exactly clarity? those things we do not know we may have opinions of but can not impose our thoughts on others. We like that everybody joining us shall have the same respect for others their way of thinking and their ideas of certain things, which might be different from us and others. We are convinced that by uniting ourselves we shall be able to stand stronger and be able to convince others to come and join us as well.

We realize people may disagree with some things we say but we feel compelled to live a life in the full meaning of what we consider our journey to Freedom in Christ. For us, this means telling the truth about our thoughts and our feelings (that we base on the Bible and what we have come to learn about the Creator  God, religion and spirituality from experience), not being inhibited by the fear of change or perhaps the fear of breaking free of the traditions we have grown up with. We consider this as a part of learning process  where everybody in the community is prepared to help each-other to grow, but does not expect that everybody is on the same step of the ladder of learning process, up high, to the gate of the Kingdom of God.

Location of Walloon Region
Little Belgium with Flanders (light green) in the north, and Wallonia (dark green) in the south

The Ecclesia Brussel-Leuven wants to be part of parishes that can grow all over FlandersWest Flanders, East Flanders, Antwerp, LimburgFlemish Brabant, Walloon BrabantBrussels-Capital RegionHainautLiège, Namur, Luxembourg, or all the parts of the divided country Belgium, also when the nationalist parties would succeed to split the country after the 2015 legislation coming up soon.
We would like to see people from all over Belgium and other countries being able to meet in peace in different places in this country. We would love to see, in the far future, to have different places in the country (if it still exist). Even when it shall be come split between Flanders and Wallonia we do hope we shall be able to feel in union, being part of one body, with others from all over the world. We want to build up in these regions a community of Followers of Christ, which can be supportive, willing to help every body who comes along, no matter where they come from or to which denomination or faith they may belong.

Whilst we want everybody to have the freedom to read whatever literature, also religious and spiritual literature, we also would not like it that others forbid us to use material or present material from others to those who come to our meeting. As such, at the moment we do present literature from Central Fellowship, but also from Dawn and other Christadelphian Biblestudents. Also when a person has written several works when he was a Christadelphian, and would have left the community, that does not mean we do ban all his good works.
The same for non-christadelphian material we consider it the right to put others to think and to know also about certain writings. As such we want to have the freedom to quote from other writers, than Christadelphians, and to put links to their writings in case such links can be available and could be useful.
To us everything confirming our faith should be able to be used, and everything where we can use material to explain that person or group is wrong according to our idea, we should be able to use that material to give our exhortation.

According to us everything should be able to be used to educate and help each other to find the truth. We would like to help everybody and ask everybody who comes along to encourage each other to discover what the Christadelphians believe. To give everybody a great base of Bible knowledge we should have the freedom to let all those who visit us to use their own preferred Bible translation and give them opportunity to compare it with other translations and with sayings from different organisations and denominations.

We prefer to work independently to help others to see what being involved and active servants of Christ and of God looks like, having the freedom to teach those who come along the meaning of the Body of Christ and so much more.

We like everybody to know that for us it is important that every brother and or sister shall be able to live in freedom and having the freedom of speech,  holding on the Biblical truths and to the truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Divine Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

The Belgian Free Christadelphians would like to know the world that they are free believers in the Biblical Truth, and that they do like to be absolved from all allegiance to any country or state, but also that all political connection between them and certain organisations ought to be, totally dissolved. We are not baptised in name of any organisation, but in the name of Christ. We are not married to any worldly person except are legal spouse, but figuratively more married to Christ Jesus, our lord and master-teacher.

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

All ecclesiae should have their own right to function in the way they like to do it.

No outsider shall have the right to, on his own or combined with others, to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our gathering as brothers and sisters in the community or parish of any free region.

No outside organisation should be allowed to impose their laws and regulations or impose taxes on us without the  consent of the whole community, nor depriving any person of the community of the brotherhood in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury. As such disfellowshipping should not be taken lightly and never may be taken on personal choice because of a personal dispute.

We consider it to be in our right to have contact with all sorts of Brethren and Sisters all over the world, be them Amended or Unamended or belonging to one or another group or organisation of Christadelphians or even from other denominations.

We consider it our right to look for peace and unity and to use our own chosen means, in accordance with God His Word to reach this goal, trying to get unity under the Brotherhood of Christadelphians.

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– This declaration is a putting in writing by Marcus Ampe, in the knowledge that it is a written expression of his own thoughts and giving notice of his own personal desire to come to Unity in the Body of Christ,
as notated in the year 2014 in March on Sunday the 16th of that month, nearing the end of Winter, looking forward to a new Spring.

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Please do find also to read:

  1. Not bounded by labels but liberated in Christ
  2. Agape, a love to share with others from the Fruit of the Spirit
  3. To be chained by love for another one
  4. Do not be afraid. Good news because a Saviour has been born
  5. Be an Encourager
  6. Bringing Good News into the worlds
  7. Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation
  8. Looking for True Spirituality 7 Preaching of the Good News
  9. Congregate, to gather, to meet
  10. Meeting – Vergadering
  11. Parish, local church community – Parochie, plaatselijke kerkgemeenschap
  12. Communion and day of worship
  13. Bread and Wine
  14. Partakers of the sufferings
  15. Not words of any organisation should bind you, but the Word of God
  16. Priority to form a loving brotherhood
  17. En Soma: One Body
  18. United people under Christ
  19. Commitment to Christian unity
  20. Be Honest
  21. Honesty beginning of holiness
  22. Our relationship with God, Jesus and eachother
  23. He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
  24. Faith
  25. Do not forget the important sign of belief
  26. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  27. Not enlightened by God’s Spirit
  28. The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands
  29. Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience
  30. Choices
  31. Always a choice
  32. We have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace
  33. A person is limited only by the thoughts that he chooses
  34. To be chained by love for another one
  35. No man is free who is not master of himself
  36. Fear and protection
  37. Only the contrite self, sick of its pretensions, can find salvation
  38. Choose you this day whom ye will serve
  39. It is a free will choice
  40. For those who make other choices
  41. Your life the sum total of all your choices
  42. Answering a fool according to his folly
  43. You cannot change anything in your life with intention alone
  44. What’s church for, anyway?
  45. Feeling-good, search for happiness and the church
  46. Let us become nothing, and Christ everything
  47. The one who has not had a taste of love
  48. Casual Christians
  49. Companionship
  50. Christianity is a love affair
  51. The Law of Christ: Law of Love
  52. What Jesus did: First things first
  53. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  54. The Greatest of These is Love
  55. A treasure which can give me everything I need
  56. The task given to us to love each other
  57. A learning process for each of us
  58. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love
  59. God demonstrates his own love
  60. Agape, a love to share with others from the Fruit of the Spirit
  61. Unarmed truth and unconditional love
  62. Unconditional love
  63. If we love one another, God lives in us
  64. The Spirit of God imparts love,inspires hope, and gives liberty
  65. No fear in love
  66. When we love we do not need laws
  67. Love envieth not
  68. Love turns one person into two; and two into one
  69. Love is like playing the piano
  70. Love will cure more sins than condemnation
  71. If we love one another, God lives in us
  72. Spread love everywhere you go
  73. Love and cultivate that which is pure
  74. Blessed are those who freely give
  75. Those who make peace should plant peace like a seed
  76. Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness and despair
  77. Work with joy and pray with love
  78. Self-preservation is the highest law of nature
  79. Guard well within yourself that treasure, kindness
  80. Growth in character
  81. God let my compassionate affection be tolerant and kind
  82. Observing the commandments and becoming doers of the Word
  83. A Living Faith #2 State of your faith
  84. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  85. A Living Faith #5 Perseverance
  86. Parts of the body of Christ
  87. Life and attitude of a Christian
  88. Breathing and growing with no heir
  89. Baptised sister not of higher status before God then an unbaptised young male?
  90. God loving people justified
  91. Small churches of the few Christadelphians
  92. The Ecclesia
  93. Bread and Wine
  94. Missionary action paradigm for all endeavours of the church

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From non-Christadelphian sites:

What does the Bible say about Unity In The Church + Bible Verses About Unity in the Church

What does the Bible say about Union

What does the Bible say about Body of Christ

What does the Bible say about Brotherhood

What does the Bible say about Brotherly love

What does the Bible say about Agape

What does the Bible say about the Ecclesia

Freedom of Speech and the Right to Offend

How can the church achieve a true, biblical unity?

The Bible underscores the importance of “unity” and “oneness.” Unity with others is “good” and “pleasant” (Psalm 133:1). Unity is absolutely essential because the church is the “body of Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:27), and a body cannot be in disunity or disharmony with itself. If disunity occurs, it essentially ceases to be a body and becomes a disjointed group of individuals. Jesus’ plan for His church is people unified in the faith.

Why Church Matters: Discovering Your Place in the Family of God by Joshua Harris

Is Your Church Unified in These 5 Ways?

1. Theological Unity

2. Relational Unity

3. Philosophical Unity

4. Missional Unity

5. Organizational Unity

Unity in the Church Sermon shared by Stephan Brown

In order to see what is necessary for us to achieve unity, let’s look at the four things Paul admonished the church in Philippi to do. Together with that, we see that he gives the example of how Jesus demonstrated for us each of the qualities Paul was now admonishing the people to exhibit. In fact, verse 6 to 11 are an earlier hymn of the Church, which Paul is using as an illustration. The people to whom he wrote would recognize this hymn. They would already have known these qualities of Jesus from singing about them so often. And now Paul is using this as a basis to teach them how they can live in unity.

Four Ways to Create Unity in Your Church

It is very common for pastors and church members to desire unity and even talk about the importance of it. Beyond desire, though, should be a plan to foster unity in the local body. Unity can be very hard to achieve and it never happens on its own.

Ultimately, only the Lord can bring unity to His people. Here are four ways to help foster unity in your church.

  1. Preach on it.
  2. Talk about Jesus’ emphasis on it.
  3. Model it.
  4. Get everyone on the same page—literally.

Why Church Unity?

I believe Church Unity is God’s priority. And the reason I believe that is here in John’s gospel chapter 17 as Jesus prays what is called his High Priestly Prayer.
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In the Bible and in the Early Church all the Christians in one town would be part of the one church in that place. So I think that Jesus’s prayer for Church Unity is really talking about all the Christians …
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The body of Christ is not meant to be a Centi-chicken, every part identical.

We even do not mind refer a site and group of people who are totally against us and other non-trinitarians. But it is worthwhile to read their article: The need for unity in the church where they sometimes seem to forget in all denominations you may find tribulations.
One of their sayings:

It is all right to have differences of opinion on the non-essential matters like worship styles or days, pre-trib rapture, post-trib rapture, Arminianism, Calvinism, etc. Whether you believe one or the other, do not affect salvation.

The writer though, states:

Primarily, it is the saving work of Christ that unites us.
Secondarily, it is the essential doctrines that define orthodoxy.

We have, as a common heritage, the blood of Christ that has been shed for the forgiveness of our sins.  True Christians serve the true and living God and we know Jesus in a personal and intimate way (1 Cor. 1:9). We have been redeemed by God himself.  Furthermore, we have the body of Scriptures which tell us the essentials of the faith and deviating from these essentials means to be outside the camp of Christ.  It is the essential doctrines that we must know and unite in.

Why then, for all practical purposes, do we elevate the non-essential to the place of essentials?  I believe it is because of immaturity and pride in various Christians.  Should we not sacrifice our “perfect” opinion on a biblical matter for being gracious to another brother or sister in Christ?  Of course we should, but when that doesn’t happen, we have denominational splits.  I cannot see how such a huge fragmentation in the Christian Church in denominations and sects glorifies God.

He concludes rightly:

We need to look at our own hearts and our own minds and compare them to Jesus and the Scripture. Where ever the two are not in agreement, it is we who need to change.  We need to pray that the Lord would provide opportunities to work with other Christians across denominational lines.  We need to recognize that we have differences of opinions and worship styles and that that is okay.  But we need to lift each other up and be united in Christ.

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