The Christian Conciliation Service™ (CCS), a division of Relational Wisdom 360, requires all Certified RW Conciliators™ to conduct themselves according to this Standard of Conduct for Christian Conciliation. Concerns or complaints about a conciliator’s possible deviations from these standards will be addressed through our Conciliator Grievance Policy.
This Standard of Conduct for Christian Conciliation is affirmed by many other conciliation organizations, including Crossroads Resolution Group, LLC, and may be used by local churches to guide their in-house conciliation services.
1. Responsibility to God
A. Statement of Faith — The Christian conciliator believes:
(1) that the Bible, consisting of the Old and New Testaments, is the only inspired, infallible, inerrant and authoritative written Word of God;
(2) that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit;
(3) in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, his virgin birth, his sinless life, his miracles, his vicarious and atoning death through his shed blood, his bodily resurrection, his ascension to the right hand of the Father, and his personal return in power and glory;
(4) that for the salvation of lost and sinful people, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is absolutely necessary;
(5) that a person is justified by grace alone, through faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ alone;
(6) in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life;
(7) in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost — those who are saved, unto the resurrection of life, and those who are lost, unto the resurrection of damnation;
(8) in the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ and his church.
B. The Christian conciliator serves in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and, therefore, shall strive earnestly to live a godly life and avoid doing anything that would dishonor the Lord or injure his church (1 Cor. 10:31).
C. The Christian conciliator shall seek unity in the body of Christ and make every effort to live at peace and to be reconciled with others (John 17:23; Rom. 12:18; Eph. 4:3).
D. The Christian conciliator shall be in continuing fellowship within a Christian church and shall support and submit to its teaching, oversight, and discipline, unless there is a clear scriptural reason to do otherwise (1 Thess. 5:12; Heb. 10:25; 13:17; Acts 4:19).
E. The Christian conciliator shall regularly seek spiritual counsel and support from mature Christians who affirm his or her conciliation ministry (Prov. 11:14; 12:15; 15:22).
F. The Christian conciliator shall encourage and help Christians to obey the biblical mandate to resolve their disputes with the help of the church rather than suing one another in secular courts (1 Cor. 6:1-8).
G. The Christian conciliator shall use appropriate opportunities to encourage others to put their trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. The conciliator shall do this with gentleness and respect and shall not attempt to force his or her views on someone who is not interested in the gospel (Rom. 1:16; 1 Pet. 3:15-16).
H. The Christian conciliator shall respect the authority of Christian parties’ churches and shall work in close cooperation with their pastors whenever possible (1 Thess. 5:12; Heb. 13:17). The Christian conciliator shall not attempt to recruit churched parties to his or her church. The conciliator shall encourage Christian parties to maintain a strong church involvement (Heb. 10:24-25).
I. At appropriate times and in a gracious manner, the Christian conciliator shall:
(1) show the parties that in order to find lasting solutions to their conflicts and problems, their lives and decisions must conform to the concepts and standards of Scripture (2 Tim. 3:15-17);
(2) point out clearly the requirements of the Scriptures as applied to everyday life and practice (2 Tim. 4:2);
(3) help the parties to make decisions, to take actions, and to change their lifestyles, habits, and conduct as God has instructed in the Scriptures, so that they may enjoy life and their relationship with God (Eph. 4:22-24); and
(4) encourage repentance, confession, forgiveness, and reconciliation whenever sin has occurred or a relationship has been broken (Luke 17:3; Gal. 6:1; 2 Tim. 4:2).
J. The Christian conciliator shall encourage and support only scripturally sound decisions and actions (Micah 6:8).
2. Responsibility to Civil Authorities and Other Professionals and Organizations
A. The Christian conciliator shall respect the legitimate jurisdiction of civil authorities and shall cooperate with them as required by law, unless there is a clear scriptural reason to do otherwise (Acts 4:19; Rom. 13:1-7).
B. The Christian conciliator shall respect the relationships that the parties have with other professionals, such as pastors, attorneys, and counselors, and shall encourage such professionals to support the conciliation process.
C. The Christian conciliator shall not imply, either directly or indirectly, that he or she represents or speaks on behalf of any organization unless he or she has received express authorization to do so.
3. Responsibility to the Parties
A. The Christian conciliator shall maintain his or her conduct and relationship with the parties above reproach and in accord with the highest standards of biblical ministry.
B. The Christian conciliator shall exercise his or her influence soberly, carefully, and with the best interests of the parties in mind.
C. The Christian conciliator shall obtain informed consent from the parties before an agreement to commence conciliation is reached. The conciliator shall define and describe the process of conciliation, its costs and fees, and his or her role in the process.
D. The Christian conciliator shall make every effort to provide parties with a fair and clearly defined process, and shall therefore work according to established rules of procedure.
E. The Christian conciliator shall clearly indicate that he or she will not serve either party as a legal advisor or advocate.
F. The Christian conciliator shall disclose all conflicts of interest, including any interest or relationship that is likely to affect impartiality or that might create an appearance of partiality or bias.
G. The Christian conciliator shall be impartial, that is, free from favoritism or bias either by word or by action, and shall be committed to serving all parties rather than a single party.
H. The Christian conciliator shall encourage the parties to make decisions based upon sufficient information and knowledge; at times this may require referring the parties to other people for relevant advice.
I. The Christian conciliator shall not voluntarily disclose information obtained through the conciliation process without the prior consent of all parties, unless such disclosure is required by law or is provided to the parties’ churches or to others according to a disclosure agreement reached before conciliation began.
J. The Christian conciliator shall make every reasonable effort to expedite the conciliation process and to overcome unnecessary delays.
K. When the Christian conciliator offers counsel or is called upon to issue an advisory opinion or an arbitration decision, he or she shall do so in a just, independent, and deliberate manner.
L. The Christian conciliator shall encourage the parties to frankly evaluate his or her performance as a conciliator.
4. Responsibility to the Public
A. The Christian conciliator shall not represent him/herself as having qualifications, affiliations, or experience that he or she does not possess, nor shall the conciliator represent him/herself as being licensed by the state unless he or she is so licensed.
B. The Christian conciliator shall not use his or her knowledge, experience, or position for unfair personal benefit or gain.
This Standard of Conduct for Christian Conciliation was written by Ken Sande and adopted by the Association of Christian Conciliation Services in 1990, with the understanding that it would be available to “any Christian conciliation ministry, church or other organization or person who wishes to help parties resolve conflicts through Christian conciliation.” Ownership of this material passed to the Institute for Christian Conciliation (ICC), a division of Peacemaker Ministries, in 1993. This material is published through RW360 pursuant to a special license from the ICC.