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Belhar Confession – South Africa

September 19, 2017

“How should the church respond when sin disrupts the church’s unity, creates di- vision among the children of God, and constructs unjust systems that steal life from God’s creation? Members and leaders of the Dutch Reformed Mission Church in South Africa faced these questions under apartheid, a system of laws that separated people by race from 1948–1994.
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“We believe that Christ’s work of reconciliation is made manifest in the church as the community of believers who have been reconciled with God and with one another;
that unity is, therefore, both a gift and an obligation for the church of Jesus Christ; that through the working of God’s Spirit it is a binding force, yet simultaneously a reality which must be earnestly pursued and sought: one which the people of God must continually be built up to attain;
that this unity must become visible so that the world may believe that separation, enmity and hatred between people and groups is sin which Christ has already conquered, and accordingly that anything which threatens this unity may have no place in the church and must be re- sisted;
that this unity of the people of God must be manifested and be active in a variety of ways; in that we love one another;
that we experience, practice and pursue community with one another;
that we are obligated to give ourselves willingly and joyfully to be of benefit and blessing to one another…”
May God help us so to live in this time of darkness and insanity on the world stage and in our own backyards…

From → Reflection

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