“Then when desire conceives, it gives birth to sin, and when sin is full grown, it gives birth to death.” James 1:15 NET
James describes from verse 14 onwards that we are personally responsible for our sins. While God might try us, His objective is not to see us fail. We are tempted and fail due to our own lusts – and the inability to control them. When our lusts go too far, when we do not control them they lead to sin. James says this then leads to death.
The Lampstand Magazine and many conservative Christadelphians insist on a reading of Romans 5:12 that replaces the word death with mortality (claiming the words are equivalent). Clearly such an approach is nonsense – the word mortal cannot fit in James 1.
Furthermore the passage simply shows that death can be used as the fate of the wicked. All humans sin but some will never die 1 Cor 15:51. James is not talking about the forgiven saints whose death is elsewhere styled sleep. They do not die because of sin. It is those who allow sin to reign in their mortal bodies who will reap the reward of death. For those saved by grace it is an altogether happier story as Paul says:
“we were dead in transgressions, [but God has] made us alive together with Christ—by grace you are saved.” Eph 2:5 NET
Fellowship is established with God and His son. It is with each other by extension. Disfellowship and exclusion are practices fraught with the danger of becoming human tradition. This topic has been explored before. An old friend recently presented us with a reprinted copy (from around 1989) of Bro Charles (Chas) P. Wauchope’s study dating to circa 1925. It is reproduced below and a pdf of the booklet is at the bottom of this post. Continue reading
Is theistic evolution or evolutionary creation (as we prefer) able to be reconciled to the Birmingham Amended Statement of Faith (BASF) which is the most commonly used statement of faith for Christadelphians?
Christadelphians historically recognise the statement of faith is a product of the time, human rather than inspired and should not be read at a word for word level (eg see here). However, in response to Christadelphians accepting the reality of evolution, some have promoted new and narrow ways of reading the statement of faith to try and exclude evolutionary creation. (Many of the same ecclesias a long time ago added specific additions to their Doctrines to Be Rejected to exclude evolution – thereby demonstrating that the BASF etc IS NOT of itself sufficient to exclude “theistic evolution” as they call it). Continue reading
1 Cor 15 is obviously relevant to Paul’s Adam/Christ comparison. Some of the language is picked up in the BASF. However we should observe what Paul is saying rather than push the comparison further. Continue reading
Obviously I believe the Scripture doesn’t rule out EC. The argument is made that EC is inconsistent with the BASF. On one hand this is clearly less significant than being inconsistent with Scripture, however the BASF is an important document underpinning our fellowship. As Brethren Carter & Cooper noted “To decry a Statement as man-made and to speak of the Bible as alone sufficient reveals a marked failure to perceive the problems of ecclesial life and its duties”
It is a useful definition of our faith as Bro Roberts commented on the value of a statement of faith saying
“So long as it is understood that the written definition is not an authority, but merely the written expression of our identical convictions, there is not only no disadvantage, but the reverse, in reducing the faith to a form that shuts the door against misunderstanding” Continue reading
In late 2015, a group of ecclesias in South Australia (mainly those affiliated with The Lampstand Magazine) issued a statement trying to restrict how our various statement of faith documents should/could be understood. The following blog comprehensively demonstrates the edicts flaws. Very unfortunate that the rebuttal has been ignored by the various arranging groups it was provided to. ieaccreationstatement.blogspot.com.au
In endeavouring to argue against EC, brethren (for it is mainly brethren) can readily express extremes which are inconsistent with both their position and the position of our community more generally. A classic example is the relationship between science and Scripture and then extrapolating this into commentary about the inspiration of Scripture. It is true enough that there is a relationship with inspiration, as is set out above. However these balance is lost in debate and comments such as below are made: Continue reading