How the RBEG Came Into Being

The Beginnings

In the early 1990s Christians from all across Germany, particularly from Eastern Westphalia, convened in order to discuss how to answer the ever growing apostacy in churches and congregations. Too often they had to see the Word of God being violated, distorted, suppressed and abandoned from the pulpits.

The Evangelical state churches who according to their own church order are bound to the Scriptures and the Creeds derived from them, have in fact left them a long time ago. In the 1990s it became even worse: Synods and consistories agreed to bless homosexual couples during “worship services.”

Also in the free churches it had to be observed how the Word of God was shifted to the background. The worship services were more and more transformed into show events which focus on the experience of man.

The Kamen Initiative

The concerned Christians met at the congregational building of the Kamen City Mission. From this place the group got its name “Kamen Initiative.”

Deliberately they decided to not retreat into home circles, but to appear in public. During the so-called “Kamen Days” they appealed for the formation of independent confessing churches. These churches should not only be legally and financially independent from the State Churches. Moreover in these churches the Word of God should be preached soundly and the triune God should be worshipped properly, as Martin Luther and John Calvin, the foremost leaders of the Great Reformation of the 16th century, had in mind.

The Council of Confessing Evangelical Churches (RBEG)

On October 31st, 1995 (Reformation Day) the first Confessing Church was established at Neuwied. Since then Confessing Churches have been formed in various places. Often they emerged from home circles or Bible study groups.

In order to prevent isolation, these churches soon decided to form a working committee or council: the “Rat Bekennender Evangelischer Gemeinden” or RBEG.

In 1999 the churches agreed on a common theological, confessional basis: the Theological Declaration of the Kamen Initiative. One year later this document was extended and rendered more precisely. Today the Theological Declaration of 2000 is the binding confessional basis of the RBEG.

It must be emphasised that the RBEG does not stand above the churches. It neither acts on its own authority nor interferes in the matters of the local congregations. It rather acts on behalf of these congregations. The RBEG has to watch over the maintaining of the Theological Declaration, to arrange and carry out inter-congregational tasks, e.g. common publications and events, and to coordinate public messages and statements of the Confessing Churches.

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