What We Believe

We who travel the Via Christa believe in Jesus the Christ as the first and only Begotten Son of God, who is the Messiah appointed to open the way of salvation from sin and error on earth. While mainstream Christianity follows Jesus through the Crucifixion to his Resurrection, we follow Christ all the way into complete Ascension of soul.

We define a church as "a building, a congregation, or a religious sect." The Society of the Universal Living Christ, our parent organization, is not a physical structure, but a non-sectarian congregation for prayer and religious study, focused on living life as Jesus the Christ taught us to do through the ensample of his own life while he lived on earth.

The Bible, both the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) and the New Testament, is our chief textbook. While we believe that that our Bible was divinely inspired, we also understand that it has undergone numerous revisions, editing (redaction), deletions and insertions into the text over its 2,000+ year history. The Bible's editors were all human, and thus, subject to error in opinion and prejudice, as are we, and this is our "opinion."

We strongly oppose replacement theology, a Christian doctrine which asserts that the New Covenant through Jesus Christ supersedes the Old Covenant, which was made exclusively with the Jewish people. The New Covenant has not replaced or superseded the Mosaic covenant. God wants all His children home. Therefore, we hold to the dual-covenant theology which asserts that the Mosaic covenant remains valid for Jews. Further, since God is All, He is time, has all time, and gives His children plenty of time to choose Jesus the Christ as His First Begotten Son and their Savior.

We are not literalists in our beliefs. While no one is able to change God's law, a man's comprehension of law will vary according to the degree and kind of his understanding of law. Always, we prefer to ponder what Jesus said, as recorded in the Gospels first, before choosing a way propounded by any other writer, Gospel or Epistle. While we have included some of the Apocryphal Gospels, we reserve opinion on the degree of their divine inspiration, while using them to ponder the revealed divine truth that they may contain.

On the Via Christa, we believe in the fundamental truth of two doctrines that are not currently mainstream in Western thought, although they were in ancient times and still are in many places on earth: The doctrine of many lives, and the doctrine of absolute personal responsibility and accountability, with its related law of correspondence or reciprocity, also known as the law of cause and effect.

Under the doctrine of many lives, you live as many lives as it takes to learn your lessons, and to apply divine law perfectly. In the Eastern world, they call this reincarnation. We believe that Jesus of Nazareth, who became Jesus the Christ when he voluntarily endured the Cross and gave up his life in sacrifice to redeem us, lived as many lives as it required for him to overcome the gravitational pull of materialism and sensory appetites in a physical body. This is why we know that he left a Way, the Via Christa, by which we can follow him all the way Home.

On the Via Christa, the doctrine of absolute personal responsibility and accountability holds that although Jesus Christ may have "died for your sins," this does not grant you permission to continue in error, sin, to think thoughts, to commit acts, or to say words that wound another: In other words, live by the Golden Rule. "For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." – Matthew 7:2. "As ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise." – Luke 6:31. "All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets." – Matthew 7:12.

The law of correspondence, or reciprocity, includes such scriptural laws as "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again." – Luke 6:38, "Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." – Galatians 6:7, and "Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy." – Hosea 10:12. These laws imply that if you do "bad" things, the "bad" will return to you, just as will the "good" if you do the "good." In the Orient, they call this the doctrine of karma, which is a Sanskrit word meaning "to carry over."

What Eastern philosophies and religions call karma, we call spiritual debt, which you create through unwise choices. You invest life sparks of your own soul substance when you choose to do wrong, even inadvertently. You must redeem that substance until you redress the balance of divine justice. You never owe soul debts to other people, but to God's law and you must balance His scales.

Declaration of Life Principles

We believe in the Motherhood and the Fatherhood of God, the Holy Trinity of the Father, Mother and Child.

We believe that God created the world, and He is still here with us, watching us care for it.

We believe in the sacredness of the human body, this transient dwelling place of the soul, and so we deem it the duty of every man and woman to keep his or her body beautiful through right thinking and right living.

We believe that the love between a man and a woman is holy and an emanation of the Divine Spirit.

We believe that the best way to prepare for a future life is to be kind, live one day at a time, and do the very best that you can do each day.

We believe that the worst devil is fear.

We believe that no one can harm us but ourselves.

We believe that we are Sons and Daughters of God and it does not yet appear what we shall be.

We believe in the purifying process of sorrow and that death is but a manifestation of eternal life.

We believe in sunshine, fresh air, mental freedom, pure friendship, and a world of beautiful thoughts.

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Edna Miriam Lister
1884 –1971
The original Pioneering Mystic,
American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother

../Edna Lister

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