An Association of Autonomous Congregations under the
Apostolic Leadership of the B'rit Chadashah Assemblies of Yahweh
A. The Fellowshipping Congregation
Building up trust, friendship and brotherhood takes time and a local congregation would be rightly cautious in placing itself under another organisation's umbrella, especially under one like ours which makes many truth claims to apostolic toqef (authority). A careful reading of the B'rit Chadashah Scriptures (New Testament) reveals that the several local assemblies or congregations were free to accept or reject apostolic authority as they wished. We find Paul pleading to many of the latter who would not submit to apostolic authority, as was required by Yah'shua (Jesus). What the New Testament Messianic Community was not was a rigid institution like the Catholic or Mormon Churches who apply draconian measures on congregations and/or their pastors (priests/bishops) who do not 'tow the line'. Had the New Testament Messianic Community been such an institution, renegades like Diotrephes would have been instantly excommunicated. As such we find that the local congregation was basically an autonomous (self-governing) entity that could chose to place itself under apostolic authority or not. Those that did received apostolic blessings, and those that did not did not receive apostolic blessings.
The relationship between an applicant congregation and the Apostolate is best described as a covenant friendship. We have already shared how NCAY views an applicant congregation. However, the applicant congregation may also be seeking its assurances in the same way. An applicant congregation would, in this instance, declaring that it senses something of the calling of the B'rit Chadashah (New Covenant) Apostles but may not at this stage wish to make any kind of formal committment to place itself completely under doctrinal and administrative authority, but aims to do so within a three year period. The Congregation may not even be agreed with all our Apostolic teachings and practices but is nonetheless interested enough to seek counsel and help in implementing them. Thus our apostolic ministers may be invited to preach or instruct, as they are free and able, in areas of importance to that particular group. An associate, fellowshipping congregation during this three year probation has no formal or covenantal obligations to us except those listed on the next page.
Thus the three-year probationary period is both for the assurance of NCAY and the assurance of the applicant congregation. Trust can take time to build in a new relationship.
This page was created on 1 February 2001
Last updated on 20 November 2015
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