In late 2004, in response to growing concerns over questions and accusations associated with our teachings and practices, Fuller Theological Seminary (Pasadena, CA, USA) initated a dialogue with representatives of the local churches and Living Stream Ministry. This dialogue continues. However, for the most part, the Seminary is now satisfied “that the teachings and practices of the local churches and its members represent the genuine, historical, biblical Christian faith in every essential aspect” (from Fuller's two-page statement; see below). This is not to say that the Seminary agrees in every way with what we in the local churches teach and practice. But in the essentials of the faith Fuller Seminary finds no cause for censure, as some have advocated against us, and in the non-essential matters of Christian truth and practice they advise fellowship and dialogue.
Below we reproduce Fuller's two-page statement concerning the dialogue that we have had with them as well as their conclusions concerning us after their careful review and evaluation of our teaching and practices. We also present an extensive statement of our teachings and practices. This statement was written in response to our dialogue with Fuller, as mentioned in their two-page statement.
“Consequently, we are easily and comfortably able to receive them as genuine believers and fellow members of the Body of Christ, and we unreservedly recommend that all Christian believers likewise extend to them the right hand of fellowship.”
[View the entire statement (PDF) here]
“During the last two years, representatives of the local churches (sometimes called by others ‘The Local Church’) and of our publishing service, Living Stream Ministry, have been privileged to meet and have dialogue with some of the leading members of Fuller Theological Seminary’s academic community....We hope that we can help alleviate the concern over Fuller’s proper Christian act of receiving us by offering to this larger audience an explanation of our views on Christian truth and practice, which in many ways will be similar to what we offered our brothers at Fuller during the last two years.”
[Read the full statement here]