What We Believe
- Jesus and the Bible–understood from the same Hebrew worldview in which it was written
- Hard sayings and seeming contradictions in the Bible become clear from a Hebrew point of view
- Jesus didn’t give us a theology; he showed us a Way of living life in God’s presence
- Our faith must make good common sense before it makes anything else
- God can never be figured out intellectually–faith is not what we think, but what we do
- In debating religious concepts we can’t know, we forget what we do know: how to treat each other
- We are uncomfortable calling ourselves Christians with all that currently implies, but are unabashed followers of Jesus
- Living Jesus’ Way is not legal, but relational, not conforming–following rules, but transforming–seeing life in a completely different way
- Living in fear of punishment has no place in a faith built on unconditional love
- Church should provide the community, accountability, structure, discipline, and service each of us needs to experience our real identity, meaning, and purpose
- Without living what we say we believe, what we say we believe is irrelevant
- Jesus’ Good News is…there is no bad news: we are as forgiven as we want to be
traditional within non-traditional
We hold a firm belief in the traditional essentials of the Christian faith—but at the same time, we believe that viewing those traditional essentials from a non-traditional viewpoint is also essential if that viewpoint gets us closer to the original intent of Jesus’ message. Jesus didn’t so much give us a theology as show us a Way of living life in God’s presence. He didn’t so much create a new religion as purify the hearts of his followers within the context of the religion they already had. When we return Jesus’s message as recorded in the New Testament to its original language and culture, an amazing shift occurs.
Putting ourselves in the sandals of the first hearers of Jesus’ message, we have come to believe that if we can make the radical shift that Jesus called being born again, we can begin a process that focuses not on heaven or hell, but on this moment right here and now. We can see ourselves as we are—in unity with each other and God’s presence.
This Way of living life, this quality of life lived in unity with God and each other is what Jesus called Kingdom. As Jesus said, “The waiting is over. The Kingdom is here.” (Mark 1:15) We have decided to stop waiting and to start living theeffect of God’s love right here and now in each relationship and each moment and person that crosses our paths.
For more of what we believe on specific subjects, see our Articles page: especially the “foundational” articles on love, talimidim, kingdom, law, and scripture, to see how Jesus’ Way plays out in central areas of our spiritual lives. And for a deeper look, there is The Fifth Way.