Why People Leave The Christadelphians

Ex-Christadelphians accept modern scientific
advances in human understanding and reject
faith based religious dogma 
Christadelphians find it exceedingly difficult to comprehend why anyone would deliberately choose to resign and become an Ex-Christadelphian. The typical Christadelphian imagines an Ex-Christadelphian to be a lonely, depressed, dejected, forlorn individual, without any hope or purpose in their life, enjoying the pitiful pleasures of sin for a short season while trembling at the prospect of Christ returning to heap damnation on their head at the final judgment.


But in reality, while the Christadelphian community is hidebound, leaderless, divided, conservative, exclusive, paranoid, out of touch, largely geriatric and increasingly irrelevant; the Ex-Christadelphian movement is a young, well educated, fast growing, confident, vibrant community. We have several different websites, discussion and support groups and an outreach programme designed to encourage Christadelphians to leave their religion. The truth for the Christadelphian community is that their brightest and best are often leaving to become Ex-Christadelphians because they see no credible evidence to support their family religion.


Ex-Christadelphians accept the findings of science about the great age of the Earth and of the Universe. We agree with human understanding about Continental Drift, Evolution and Genetics. We acknowledge the latest Israeli archaeological findings which deny the historical accuracy of the Pentateuch and much of the Biblical narrative prior to 700BC. We are liberal, reformist, inclusive, progressive and academically attuned to modern times.
 
So why the misunderstanding? Why don't Christadelphians "get" what we Ex-Christadelphians are all about? Why did we Ex-Christadelphians trade the prospect of eternal life and endless bliss in The Kingdom and beyond, for a few short years of frail mortality followed by endless death?

Are we the most stupid people on the face of the planet? - Or are we on to something? Could it be that we have found a prize that we value significantly higher than the prospect of living for ever?

Yes, we have. We Ex-Christadelphians have gained something that in our estimation is absolutely fantastic. The prospect of eternal life fades in comparison to what we have gained and we won't swap it for anything. We love what we have gained and we want the remaining Christadelphians to share our joy by writing their letter of resignation to their arranging brethren.

But sadly, it's not going to happen. It's not going to happen because most Christadelphians place no value on the precious thing that we Ex-Christadelphians have. They don't understand it; they don't even begin to comprehend what we have gained. When we try to explain it to Christadelphians they return a blank stare of baffled puzzlement. They are lost for words and shake their heads in confusion because they don't have the faintest idea what we are saying to them.

It's rather like a wealthy American tourist trying to explain to a destitute North Korean peasant what life is like in Manhattan. They just would not get it.

- Because we have gained our reason. We have broken free from an eccentric family religion and finally discovered that the whole Christadelphian thing is just a bunch of nonsense and that the promise of eternal life and "The Kingdom" is as empty and meaningless as the words of Christadelphian founder Dr John Thomas when he predicted that Christ would return in 1866.

We joined the Christadelphians because we thought that they had discovered "The Truth" but it was only when we plucked up the courage to leave that we finally found it.

Our truth is not a "Statement of Faith" that can be printed, copied and learned by rote. Our truth is an unfinished journey of discovery. Mankind has travelled some of that path and much of it lies uncharted in the future. We Ex-Christadelphians have fearlessly resumed our journey of seeking truth and we rejoice in our travels. We sorrow for the Christadelphians who have ended their journey of discovery and instead they have sat down in the road, suffering a group delusion.

Christadelphian founder Dr John Thomas wrote:

"Investigate everything you believe - if it is the truth it cannot be injured; if error, the sooner it is corrected the better. Never be afraid of results to which you may be driven by your investigations, as this will inevitably bias your mind and disqualify you to arrive at ultimate truth."

We Ex-Christadelphians agree with that statement; even if we disagree with almost everything else that John Thomas wrote. If those words and that philosophy were the guiding principle of the Christadelphian movement we might have delayed our leaving. But following the death of John Thomas, Robert Roberts, the first editor of The Christadelphian magazine, declared that "The Truth" had been discovered by John Thomas and he threatened excommunication to any like us who continued to search for truth about life and the Universe.

Robert Roberts ignorantly nailed "The Truth" to the floorboards when he fixed it in "The Statement of Faith" and in so doing he killed it. He killed it because he ended the search for truth and arrogantly proclaimed that he held it in his hand. He was wrong.

For a while, when we were Christadelphians, we Ex-Christadelphians were also afflicted by the group delusion of our family religion. But one by one we had the good sense to realise that all was not right in our religion and we plucked up our courage and handed in our letters of resignation, or allowed the Christadelphians to throw us out.

Now we rejoice in our freedom and the joy of our resumed search for truth. To us it is the most precious thing in the World. We are never going to return to the soporific, mind destroying tyranny of our Christadelphian days. Instead we are reaching out arms of love to our much loved previous brethren and sisters, to encourage them to awake out of their sleep of delusion and to join with us in our walk towards what our founder John Thomas called "Ultimate Truth."

Therein is the real difference between Christadelphians and Ex-Christadelphians. The former believe that they have found "The Truth." We believe that we are on a journey of discovery towards "Ultimate Truth."

6 comments:

  1. Reading this article made me feel like Bob Dylan did the first time he heard Elvis Presley I FELT LIKE I HAD JUST BUSTED OUT OF JAIL. As the son of a devout christadelphian family,it has been a sheer delight to know that you are all out there feeling the way I do.Thankyou so very much.

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  2. You have brought absolute disgrace to the name Christadelphian or brother in Christ - in no way is this giving glory to God. You are ignorant of evidence that what the Bible says is 100% right, and you have thrown away the greatest hope anyone could have - this world has nothing to offer, that is why I am a christadelphian. The truth - God's word - is plain in revealing His plan for us all, and when Christ returns which we know is soon by current world events, he will pour judgement on you all and send you into everlasting shame and contempt, only to die in the world you chose to live in.
    You are pulling others from the greatest hope they could have - life eternal in God's kingdom, and fulfillment in faith and hope in this evil age which you choose to live. Readig this article has disgusted me - how dare you openly encourage Christadelphian believers to live under sin and the flesh for the short life we will live before the return of Christ, instead of eternity in God manifestation and perfect bodies, where there will be no more confusion, pain, suffering or sickness of any kind for us.

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    Replies
    1. Maybe. Or maybe you are the one who is mistaken, having merely believed what you were taught as a child and now indoctrinating other young minds to believe all this nonsense and give up the only life they have in the hope of something that sounds like a fairy tale.

      Rather than being ignorant of evidence, most of us were persuaded by the evidence to change our minds.

      I don't believe in your predictions of the future nor your empty threats of punishment. That kind of fear-mongering won't work any more sorry. Yet that's exactly the kind of rhetoric you inflict on the young to keep them from questioning. Why not just be honest and follow the evidence where it leads, being aware of your biases and doing your best to overcome them?

      Suppose you were wrong. How would you know? (if easier, imagine you had been raised as a Mormon. How would you recognise your error?)

      If you were wrong, what would you expect the world to look like?

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    2. CD believer; those of us (many) who at one time had convictions like you, wrote to unbelievers like you, spoke like you, have subsequently come to a sincere well-thought out conviction that we were wrongly indoctrinated. Many of us from the cradle by misguided CDs. Yes, we do dare to speak as we do. We have been where you are now, and we have found that position of belief to be untenable. If you want to find real truth, instead of thinking you are in 'The Truth', start to attempt to prove what you believe by carefully examining the claims of the bible. Read what others have found out. Examine their reasons. Trawl through some of the articles on this blog and honestly weigh up the writers` reasoning. We changed our minds by evidence, and refused to slavishly follow unsubstantiated fairy stories and myths.

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    3. So if we're so ignorant of evidence that the Bible is 100% right, perhaps you could share it?

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    4. Hopefully CD believer will come back and discuss honestly why he/she is so insistently sure that he/she is correct in the belief he/she holds. Will he/she be strong enough to discuss rationally and with an open mind?

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