Table of Contents
- Article I ……… Church Covenant
- Article II …….. Organization
- Article III ……. Articles of Faith
- Article IV ……. Membership
- Article V …….. Assets
- Article VI ……. Government
- Article VII …… Committees
- Article VIII ….. Worship and Fellowship
- Article IX ……. Meetings
- Article X …….. Amending the Constitution
Having been led, as we believe by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior, having made profession of our faith, and having been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we do now, in the presence of God, angels, and this assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into covenant with one another, as one body in Christ.
We promise, as God shall enable us, to walk together in Christian love and to exercise Christian care and watchfulness over one another. We will participate in one another’s joys, and endeavor with tenderness and sympathy to bear one another’s sorrows. We will strive for the advancement of our church in spiritual knowledge and holiness, and to sustain its worship, ordinances, disciplines and doctrines. We will contribute cheerfully to the support of this ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor, and the spread of the gospel throughout the whole world. We will also avail ourselves of the great privilege of prayer both for ourselves and for others.
We further promise to maintain family and private devotions; to educate our children in the Christian faith; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; and to walk circumspectly in the world. We will strive to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements, and exemplary in our deportment. We will abstain from every form of evil, be faithful in our relationship to Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord, and to live to His glory.
Section 1 – Name
This church shall be known as the Community Bible Church of Tunkhannock. Our current Mailing address is 2 Charles Brothers Plaza, Tunkhannock, PA 18657-1736.
Section 2 – Purpose
The purpose of CBC is glorify God, by introducing men and women to Jesus Christ, and by nurturing and building them into devoted disciples. We do this by:
1. Maintaining regular public worship of God
2. Building up the congregation in the faith
3. Promoting systematic study and teaching of the Bible
4. Strengthening the bond of Christian fellowship
5. Observing the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper
6. Participating in the evangelization of the lost, both locally and throughout the world.
ARTICLES OF FAITH
PART I – Those beliefs that must be believed:
Section 1 – The Scriptures
We believe that the Bible is the inspired word and revelation of God. We believe this extends to the words used (verbal), and that all parts of the Bible are inspired. We believe the Scriptures are infallible in all matters (that is without error), and that they are the only and final authority in faith and conduct. (II Ti 3:16-17, II Pt 1:19-21)
Section 2 – God
We believe there is only one true and living God, in whom are three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; yet one in essence, co-equal and coexistent. We believe that God is spirit; that He is holy, just, righteous, loving, unchanging, omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent. (Dt 6:4, Isa 44:6, Mt 28:19, II Cor 13:14, I Cor 8:6, John 4:24, Isa 6:3, Dt 32:4, Ac 3:14, Jn 3:16, Jas 1:17, Mal 3:6, Heb 4:13, Eph 1:19-21, Ps 139:7-10)
God the Father – We believe in God the Father, who is distinguished as such because of His particular relationship to Jesus Christ, His Son. We believe that God is the Father of regenerated man. We become heirs and joint heirs with Christ through adoption made possible by the shed blood of Jesus. (Jn 20:17,I Cor 15:24,28, Ro 8:14-17, 23, Eph. 4:6, I Jn 3:1).
God the Son – We believe that Jesus Christ, the second person of the trinity and the eternal Son of God, was begotten of Mary, a virgin, by the Holy Spirit, and was born man. He was in every respect as we are, but without sin. He is the only mediator between God and men. (Jn 1:1-3, 1:14-18, 14:6, Lk 1:34-35, Phil 2:5-8, Heb 2:17, 4:15, I Ti 2:5)
God the Holy Spirit – We believe that the divine person of the Holy Spirit has been active in the world from the beginning. It is He Who shows men their sin and leads them to Jesus Christ for forgiveness. He initiates the new birth and is actively present in believers, guiding, correcting, and empowering their growth toward the stature of Christ. (II Pe 1:21, Jn 14:16-17, 16:7-8, 16:13, Ac 1:8, Eph 4:13)
Section 3 – Satan
We recognize the personality of Satan, who first tempted man to sin. Since the fall he has enjoyed power and allegiance in the created world and continues to entice men from God and to oppose the work of the Holy Spirit. He is destined to final judgment and condemnation by God. (Ge 3:1-13, Ac 26:18, Lk 8:12, Rev 20:10)
Section 4 – Creation
We believe that God created all things from nothing, and it was good, and free from the sin and evil that permeates the world today. Environmental conditions today are different from the original creation due to God’s judgment in the Garden of Eden, and the global flood. (Ge 1 & 2, Col 1:16-17, Jn 1:1-3, Cor 8:6, Rev 4:11)
Section 5 – Fall of Man
We believe that man was created in innocence, subject to God’s commands. By willful disobedience, he fell from his sinless and happy state. In consequence all men are now sinners, not only by nature, but also by choice. Therefore, all are under just condemnation without defense or excuse, and for this reason need a new birth. (Ge 3, Ro 3:10-19, Ro 2:1-3, Jn 3:3-7)
Section 6 – Atonement
We believe that salvation of sinners is wholly by grace. The Son of God, who was Himself completely without sin, voluntarily took upon Himself our sin – the just for the unjust. He made a full and complete atonement. In raising Christ from the dead on the third day, God bore witness to the completion of His atoning work. “Once an individual accepts Christ as Savior, he cannot lose his salvation. He may fall into a backslidden state, or he may have never truly accepted Christ – but we do not believe a person can lose his salvation.” (Eph 2:8-9, II Cor 5:21, Jn 10:17-18, I Pe 3:18, Heb 9:26-18, I Cor 15:3-4, 15:17, Ro 4:24-25, Rom 8:35-39, 11:29, Jn 10:27-30)
Section 7 – Salvation
We believe that faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is the only foundation of salvation. This faith in Him involves realization of our sin and turning in repentance and trust to Him as the sole deliverer from sin. Salvation is therefore a new birth. The believer is a new creature whose life is bound to Jesus Christ as Savior, source and sustainer. “Once an individual accepts Christ as Savior, he cannot lose his salvation. He may fall into a backslidden state, or he may have never truly accepted Christ – but we do not believe a person can lose his salvation.” (Ro 3:21-26, 8:35-39, 11:29, Ac 2:37-38, 16:31, Jn 3:3-7, 5:24, 10:27-30, Eph 2:1, II Cor 5:17, Gal 2:20)
Section 8 – Return of Christ
We believe in the personal and imminent coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and that this blessed hope should have a vital bearing on the personal life and service of believers. Jesus himself told the disciples that He was going away to prepare a place for His followers and that He would come again to gather them together for eternity. The Bible lists several characteristics of Christ’s Second Coming: He will come unexpectedly, personally, triumphantly, and with His angels to reward each person according to what he has done. (1 Th 4:14-16, Ac 1:11, Jn. 14:3; Mt. 24:32-51, Lk. 19:11-27)
Section 9 – Resurrection
We believe in a literal bodily resurrection of the dead, in the same way our Lord was resurrected. Jesus is the first resurrection. When the Lord calls the church to be with Him, all believers both dead and still living, will be caught up to be with Him. All unbelievers will also be resurrected at the Great White Throne judgment, where their lives will be examined. (Mt 22:29-32, 1 Cor. 15:12-28, Phil 3:10, Heb 6:2, Rev 20:5)
Section 10 – The Final State of Man
We believe that the final destiny of every man will be determined entirely by his relation to Jesus Christ. All who have truly accepted Christ will dwell with Him in a heaven perfect in every respect because of the presence of God. All who are not reconciled to God through Christ will be eternally separated from Him in the lake of fire. Christians should, therefore, labor to warn all men of the consequences of rejecting Christ. (1 Jn 5:11-12, Phil 1:6, Jn 14:2-3, Rev 21:22-23, Mt 7:21-23, 25:31-46, Ac 20:26-27, 31)
PART II – Those beliefs that must not be contested:
Section 11 – Church
We believe that the church is the body of those who have received Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Membership in the local church does not necessarily constitute membership in the body of Christ. Individuals must have had a life-changing experience whereby they have truly accepted Christ as their personal savior. The Church is intended for worship, to observe the ordinances, and to strengthen believers in the faith. It is entrusted with God’s message of salvation and is commissioned by Christ to proclaim the gospel everywhere. (Rev 2:18-20, Eph 1:22-23, Jn 4:23, 1 Cor 11:23-26, Heb 10:24-25, Ac 2:41-42, 2 Cor 5:19-20, Mt 28:18-20)
Section 12 – Christian Maturity
We believe that it is the will of God that all believers continue to mature toward the stature of Christ under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. As the believer willingly accepts the direction of the Spirit, his inner life is sanctified and brought into more perfect obedience to God’s will. Moreover, within the fellowship of Christians and in the world, the Spirit directs the believer toward the likeness of Christ. In this way, the believer’s active love bears witness to God’s presence and power within and glorifies God before men. The believer also seeks to discover and nurture the Spiritual Gifts God has given. Every believer should be actively using his gift in this fellowship and in the community. (Eph 4:13, Ro 8:14, I Th 4:1-3, Eph 4:22-24, Jn 13:34-35, I Jn 3:16-17, Mt 5:16; Gifts – 1 Cor 12, 1 Pe 4:10, Ro 11:29)
Section 13 – Ordinances
We believe that the ordinances of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper are symbols of God’s redeeming work and marks of our public profession as Christians. They are commanded for all believers, but are of no effect apart from the believer’s faith. This church shall administer Baptism by immersion signifying the believer’s union with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection.. The Lord’s Supper is to be received by believers only, in remembrance of Christ’s broken body and shed blood. (Matt 28:19, Acts 8:35-38, Acts 10:47-48, Rom 6:3-5, Col 2:12, Matt 26:26-28, 1 Cor 11: 23-29)
Section 14 – Civil Government
We believe that civil government is ordained of God for the interests and good order of society. Christians are commanded to honor and pray for those in authority and to obey their lawful commands except where these commandments oppose obedience to Christ. In exercising their responsibilities in a democracy, Christians should be guided by the awareness that a just and merciful society is pleasing and honoring to God. While some individual believers may be called into positions of leadership with the local, state or federal governments, we do not believe the Church has a Scriptural mandate to reform society. While we should state our positions respectfully and set the example by helping those in need, the church needs to focus on sharing the gospel and reforming itself. This is the clear pattern taught throughout the Old and New Testaments. (Ro 13:1-7, Mk 12:13-17, 1 Ti 2:1-2, Ac 4:19-20, Dt 16:18-20, Am 8:4-6, Jas 5:4, Lk 10:30-37, Ge 41-47, Da l-12)
Section 15 – Millennial Reign
We believe in a literal 1000 year reign of Christ on earth following the seven year tribulation period. This earthly kingdom with the Messiah reigning as king will be the consummation of the Abrahamic and Davidic covenants indicating God has separate plans for Israel and the Church. (Rev 20:2-3, 4, 6-7)
Section 1 – Membership Procedures
Any person who professes faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as personal Savior, gives satisfactory evidence of a changed life, has been baptized, and declares himself substantially in accord with the principles and practices of this church, may become a candidate for church membership. Believers who have been baptized, although not by immersion, may likewise become candidates for church membership.
The steps toward membership are as follows:
1. Request for membership shall be made to one of the Elders. A candidate will be assigned a sponsoring Elder, whose duty it will be to help prepare the candidate for membership and make sure the individual is truly converted. The candidate must agree with the principles and practices of the church, and the key doctrinal issues that must be believed. The sponsoring Elder will determine if the candidate is ready to move on to the next step in the membership process. If it is determined that the individual is not ready, a training plan will be developed aimed at meeting the requirements.
2. Upon approval from the sponsoring Elder, the candidate will then meet with two or more of the Elders to give testimony to his Christian experience and declare agreement with the principles and practices of this church.
3. The candidate’s name will then be recommended by the Elders to the church. The candidate would then be received into this church upon receiving a two-thirds vote of those members present at the next scheduled Congregational meeting.
4. On the earliest convenient Sunday, the Elders shall extend the right hand of fellowship, signifying the new member’s acceptance into the membership of the church.
Section 2 – Members Under Age 18
Anyone under the age of 18 wishing to join the church according to the steps in Section 1 may do so. He will have all the privileges and responsibilities of membership except that he will be unable to vote until he reaches age 18.
Section 3 – Membership Review
At least once a year, the Elders shall review the membership roll and make appropriate changes according to Section 4.
Section 4 – Non-Attending Members
Supporting Members – Members with a legitimate reason for not attending the regular church program but expressing continued interest and support shall be placed in this category and listed on the Non-Voting Roll.
Inactive Members – Members who have habitually failed to attend the church program for a period of one year without a reason acceptable to the Elders shall be placed in this category and listed on the Non-Voting Roll. Any person so listed for a period of three years shall be dropped from the Membership Roll. The Elders shall contact each inactive member at least once a year during the above three-year period.
Section 5 – Restoration
Supporting or Inactive Members habitually attending for three months shall be returned to the Voting Roll.
Section 6 – Letters of Transfer
Letters of transfer may be granted to all members upon approval of the Elders. The secretary shall provide such a letter addressed to a specific church in accordance with customary procedure.
Section 7 – Discipline
When a member of the church enters into a sinful activity, and it is brought to the attention of an Elder, follow-up will occur in keeping with the principles of Matthew 18. If the member confesses to the sinful activity, and repents of his or her actions, the matter will be dropped (depending on the circumstances, the Elders may remove the individual from a position of authority or responsibility). If he refuses to confess or repent of the sinful activity in question, the Elders may place the individual on discipline and remove him from positions of responsibility until such time that he confesses, repents, and shows evidence of a repentant life.
Section 1 – Money
Every member shall be expected to contribute regularly to the church as God prospers him (1 Cor 16:2). While there is no New Testament command that the Christian give ten percent back to the church, we do believe this is a good principle which was laid out in the Old Testament (Abraham to Melchizedek, Mosaic Covenant), and that all Christians need to consider carefully the amount and manner in which they give to the Lord’s work. All money for the general fund shall be raised by voluntary offering and in no other way. The Youth Group shall be allowed to hold fund raising events to raise money for various activities with the consent of the Church Board. General fund raising and soliciting at the Church for outside causes (such as for school or sports) is not permitted.
Section 2 – Property
The property of the Community Bible Church of Tunkhannock shall forever remain in the control of its members. In the unlikely event that the church should cease to operate, all property and assets would be given over to other non profit organizations who’s mission it is to further the work of Jesus Christ here on earth and preach the gospel. Under no circumstances would any funds or assets be used for private inurement to any person or persons in the event of a sale or dissolution of the church. The church board would present a recommendation to the membership concerning the disposition of property and assets. A two thirds vote of qualified members present and voting would be required to approve such action.
Section 1 – Governing Bodies
a. The Government of this church, under God, is vested in the Elders, Deacons, and Deaconesses. Members of these two governing boards shall be elected by the body of believers which forms the membership of this church.
b. All officers of this church shall be members of the Board of Elders or the Board of Deacons or under the direct supervision of one of these governing bodies.
c. The Church Board shall consist of the Elders, Deacons, & Deaconesses, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and Secretary.
d. The Church Board shall have supervision over the business transactions and general work of the church. The Church Board shall legislate the affairs of the church in its dealings with the Pastor, employees, and outside organizations. The Church Board is authorized to make spending decisions up to $2,500. Decisions to spend greater that $2,500 must be brought to the Membership for approval.
e. For legal purposes, the Church will be represented by an Executive Board consisting of the Chairman of the Board of Elders, the Chairman of the Board of Deacons, the Secretary and Treasurer.
f. The elected positions are Elders, Deacons, Deaconesses, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, Secretary, Nominating Committee, and two Auditors. Each individual on the ballot will need to receive 70% of the votes cast to be confirmed.
g. The Church Board shall determine if additional “positions” (i.e. additional Deacon, Committee for some unique purpose, etc.) are needed and charge the Nominating Committee to propose candidates to fill these positions.
h. If during the course of his term, an individual decides to resign from his elected position, the Nominating Committee will recommend an individual to fill the vacancy, which the Church Board would then confirm by vote. The individual would then be confirmed by vote at the next congregational quarterly meeting.
Section 2 – Elders
- ELDERS (Overseers, Shepherds) – There shall be three or more in number as determined by the needs of the church. These individuals will be church members. They shall be elected by the church membership at the Annual Business Meeting for a term of three years with approximately one third of the terms expiring each year. Elders may serve for no more than two consecutive terms but will be eligible for reelection after a one year absence from the office. They shall minister to the spiritual needs of the congregation and shall have responsibility for the leadership of the church. The Elders are responsible for the key ministries of the church including Worship Service Planning, Christian Education, Bible Study, Discipleship, and Missions/Evangelism. They shall provide for the supply of the pulpit when the Pastor is unable to do so. They shall be the Selection Committee responsible for guiding the church in the choice of a new Pastor and other staff members. They shall assist with the ordinances, and shall have charge of all matters of discipline. They shall hold regular meetings as the needs of the church dictate and shall present a written report at the Annual Business Meeting. They shall elect a chairman to moderate their meetings as well as the Church Board meetings and Congregational meetings. The Elders shall be ex-officio members of all boards and committees connected with the Church or any of its organizations. At least one Elder shall be assigned to each committee to assist, as necessary, in its work.
- QUALIFICATIONS – All Elders shall comply with the qualifications listed in 1 Timothy 3, Titus 1:5-11, and 1 Peter 5:1-3. It is particularly important that the Elders meet not only the qualifications of character listed in these passages, but that they also possess the spiritual gifts listed and implied.
1) TEACHER – Each Elder must be “a capable and qualified teacher” (1 Timothy 3:2 Amplified). It is expected of each Elder that he be actively involved in teaching and nurturing and maturing the members of this body and that he view this as his primary calling.
2) LEADER – Among the spiritual gifts listed in Romans 12 and promised to the church is the spiritual gift of LEADERSHIP…“if it is LEADERSHIP, let him govern diligently” (Rom. 12:8). God has promised to give men in His church the gift of leadership so that they might “govern diligently”. Therefore, it seems reasonable that the leaders in His church should have this gift. It is the position of this church that the Elders (“overseers” and “shepherds” from 1 Peter 5) who have been given the responsibility to “govern” God’s church possess the spiritual gift of leadership that their position as leaders would require.
- DIVORCE. It is the position of this church that the Biblical injunction that an Elder be “the husband of but one wife” is a prohibition against polygamy and not divorce as a qualification for being an Elder. Divorce, therefore, does not necessarily disqualify a man from becoming an Elder. However, this church stands with God in that it “HATES DIVORCE” (Mal. 2:16), considers it sinful (though each party in the divorce may not have sinned) and is strongly opposed to divorce. It does recognize that there are extreme circumstances in which God does allow an innocent party to seek divorce (Mt. 5:32; 19:9).
- PASTOR. We believe that God has ordained only two offices in the church; the office of ELDER (1 Ti 3, Tit 1:5-11, 1 Pe 5:1-3) and the office of DEACON (Acts 6:1-6, 1 Ti 3:8-11). All other offices in the church are either part of these two governing bodies or are under the direct supervision of these two bodies. Furthermore, we do not see any Scriptural support for the office of PASTOR as being an office specially ordained by God (the word “pastor” is used only one time in the New Testament and refers, in all probability, to a Spiritual Gift and not an office, Eph. 4:11).
However, we recognize that for nearly 2000 years the church of Jesus Christ has, to one extent or another, embraced the “office” of pastor both to its detriment and its blessing. Therefore, we accept the office of pastor, but only as one that is included in and is part of the Elder Board. The pastor is, therefore, an Elder with no more or with no less authority than any other member of the Elder Board, but to whom certain specific tasks and responsibilities are assigned. The “pastor” shall have one exemption to the rules laid down for Elders: he shall be exempted from serving for only three years on the Elder Board. There shall be no limit to the time he may serve.
Following the recommendation of the Pulpit Committee, appointment of the Pastor shall take place at a meeting duly called for that express purpose. His appointment shall be by a three-quarters vote of the qualified members present and he shall hold office for an indefinite term. The relationship of the Pastor and the church may be terminated by mutual consent, or by either upon sixty days’ notice. Any proposal to dismiss the Pastor shall be referred to the Elders for consideration and counsel with the Pastor. The church may dissolve the pastoral relationship upon recommendation of the Elders by a 40 percent vote of the qualified members present at a duly called meeting. He shall hold the office for an indefinite term but will require a “vote of confidence” every three years to retain (three-quarters vote of the qualified members present).
- If, at any time, the personal belief, preaching or teaching of an Elder or Pastor shall knowingly not be in full accord with the Covenant and the Articles of Faith of the church, his service shall be terminated, upon examination.
Section 3 – Deacons and Deaconesses
- DEACONS and DEACONESSES – There shall be three or more in number as determined by the needs of the church. These individuals will be church members. They shall be elected by the church membership at the Annual Business Meeting for a term of three years, with approximately one third of the terms expiring each year. Deacons and Deaconesses may serve for no more than two consecutive terms but will be eligible for reelection after a one-year absence from the office. Chairman of the Board of Deacons and Deaconesses shall be a Deacon and serve a one-year term. They shall assist and be directed by the Elders in ministering to the needs of the congregation with a primary emphasis on providing care to the church congregation (“serving the needs” from Acts 6) and maintenance of all church properties. They shall provide for ushering at all church services; the administration of the church Benevolent Fund (the Elder in charge of Pastoral Care may also administer the Benevolent Fund); the preparation of the elements of the communion service; the oversight of the work of the Church Secretary and the Church Treasurer. The board of Deacons shall hold regular meetings and shall present a written report at the Annual Business Meeting. The Deacons shall comply with the qualifications listed in Acts 6:1-6 and 1 Timothy 3:8-13. The Deaconesses shall likewise be women of godly character, mature, not given to gossip and competent to counsel the special needs of women in the congregation.
- TREASURER – The Treasurer shall be elected by the church at the Annual Business Meeting and shall be considered a member of the Board of Deacons and Deaconesses. This individual will be a church member and serve a term of one year. The Treasurer, assisted by the assistant Treasurer, shall count, deposit and record all donations and offerings given to the church. He/she shall record all disbursements, make disbursements as properly authorized, report the financial status of the church to the congregation at business meetings (but no more often than quarterly) and issue an annual statement of contributions to those contributors who identify themselves. Any additional offerings shall be handled by the Church Treasurer. The Treasurer shall make his/her books available to the auditors upon request. The Treasurer shall follow the guidance of the Church Board in determining the priority of expenditures.
- ASSISTANT TREASURER – The Assistant Treasurer shall be elected by the church membership at the Annual Business Meeting and shall be considered a member of the Board of Deacons. This individual will be a church member and serve a term of one year. He/she shall assist the Treasurer in carrying out the responsibilities of the office of Treasurer. The Assistant Treasurer’s specific functions will be determined by the Treasurer.
- CHURCH SECRETARY – The Church Secretary shall be elected by the church at the Annual
Business Meeting and shall be considered a member of the Board of Deacons and Deaconesses. This individual will be a church member and serve a term of one year. He/she shall keep a complete record of the transactions of all business meetings of the Church and a register of the names of the members and the dates of their admission.
The following list of committees will be appointed based on the concurrence of the Church Board (with the exception of the Nominating Committee which is always used and elected at the Annual Business Meeting). While the intent is to always utilize the following committees, if people are unavailable to fill vacant roles, a committee may go under staffed or even un-staffed until such time that people are available and willing to fill the role.
Section 1 – Nominating Committee
The Nominating Committee shall consist of the Pastor, Chairman of the Church Board, one of the Deacons/Deaconesses, and five church members elected by the congregation at the Quarterly Business Meeting preceding the Annual Business Meeting. The Chairman of the Church Board shall lead the nominating process. Period of service will be for one year and duties include:
- Announce, provide forms for and solicit nominations from the membership at least two months prior to the annual meeting.
- Instruct members in the spiritual qualifications for those who are in various church offices and provide a listing of those qualifications with each nomination form.
- Review the list of congregational nominees, make additional in-committee nominations as necessary/appropriate, and interview and thoroughly investigate the qualifications and capabilities of each person considered for office. Accepting nominees must affirm, adhere to, and perpetuate the published standards and defining character of Community Bible Church as set forth in the Constitution and Statement of Ministry. In choosing candidates to fill the vacancies, several questions should be considered:
- Do the individuals on the slate have experience or gifts in the areas for which they are being recommended? (administration, teaching, worship service planning, etc.)
- Are the individuals recommended for the leadership positions, truly those in the trenches “leading” the work? (They need to be.)
- Prepare a finalized list with biographical sketches to be disseminated at least two weeks prior to Annual Business Meeting. If a nominee is not on the final list, the person who made that nomination will receive an explanation.
- Provide for filling vacancies in elected positions or add positions during the year as directed by the Church Board.
- Those on the Nominating Committee need to have a good understanding of CBC Government and have a measure of Spiritual discernment when considering individuals for the various positions. These individuals should also have friendly relationships with many members of the congregation so as to effectively carry out their responsibilities.
Section 2 – Audit Committee
Two auditors shall be appointed by the Church Board. They shall audit all financial records of the church and shall submit a written report at the Annual Business Meeting. They shall serve a term of one year.
Section 3 – Evangelism and Missions Committee
The Evangelism and Missions Committee shall be appointed by the Church Board and consist of a Chairman and at least two other members. Terms shall be for two years and shall be staggered. It shall be the duty of the Evangelism and Missions Committee, under the oversight of the Church Board, to initiate, budget, and direct all the missionary/evangelism activities of the Church in keeping with the Community Bible Church Statement of Ministry. It shall not be within the power of this committee to appoint or dismiss any missionary, but it shall function in an advisory capacity under the Church Board.
Section 4 – Christian Education Committee
The Christian Education Committee shall consist of the Sunday School Superintendent and at least two other members appointed by the Church Board for a term of one year. Its duties shall include planning, supervising and administering the church educational program under the oversight of the Church Board.
Section 5 – Worship Service Planning Committee
The Worship Service Planning Committee shall consist of the Elder responsible for this ministry, and at least two other members appointed by the Church Board for a term of one year. Its purpose shall be to plan the Sunday worship services, and other special services such as Easter, Christmas Eve, etc., and be under the oversight of the Elder Board. The worship services will include a variety of music, dramas, readings, etc., and when possible, these activities should harmonize with the message. If for any reason, the Elder responsible for this ministry cannot make a Church Board meeting, or need help in representing the needs of the Worship Service Planning Committee, another member of the Worship Service Planning Committee may fill in on the Church Board (with voting privileges) for matters pertaining to Worship Service Planning.
Section 6 – Advisory Council
The Advisory Council shall be made up of all willing, former CBC elders (excluding those who have been dismissed from the Board or who have had the hand of fellowship withdrawn) who are currently part of the fellowship of CBC, and who affirm the doctrinal statement and church covenant. The purpose of this council is to provide general guidance to the Elder Board in determining long term direction for the church, or if the Elder Board feels that Disciplinary action is required for anyone on the Church Board.
Section 7 – Other Committees
Additional committees which are deemed necessary shall be appointed by the Church Board.
WORSHIP AND FELLOWSHIP
We recognize that the Church of Jesus Christ is large and diverse and that the only requirement for entrance into this “family of God” is through personal faith in the atoning death of Jesus Christ on the sinner’s behalf. We also recognize that aside from the essential doctrines of the faith there are many secondary issues that separate brothers and sisters in Christ. It is our desire to keep these secondary issues to a minimum in our congregation. But we also recognize that, by the very nature of some of these secondary issues, it is essential that we as a church set down certain guidelines for our worship services. We do so humbly and in the full recognition that our understanding of God and His Word is not, by any means, perfect.
The worship service of this church shall not entertain the Charismatic/Pentecostal distinctives of “speaking in tongues”, “first person prophecies”, “words of faith”, “word of knowledge”, “spiritual singing”, and other Charismatic/Pentecostal activities that are distinctive from those worship services that characterize the evangelical Christian community of believers.
This church IS NOT anti-Charismatic or anti-Pentecostal, and does not in any way wish to separate itself from those congregations that consider themselves as such. Neither do we wish to separate ourselves or to exclude from membership and fellowship brothers and sisters in Christ who consider themselves Charismatic or Pentecostal. We must, however, insist that those activities that are distinctively Charismatic or Pentecostal not be exercised as a part of our church, its worship services or its programs. This does not mean, however, that we are demanding that these brothers and sisters not exercise these distinctives in their homes or in other congregations. (NOTE: For a more complete discussion of this subject, please refer to our distinctives page on this web site)
Section 1 – For Worship and Fellowship
- Public services shall be held regularly on the Lord’s day and should be in line with the church’s doctrinal statement in content.
- Meetings for prayer and praise should take place at least once a week whenever possible.
- The ordinance of the Lord’s Supper shall be observed at least once a month, either on Sunday morning worship or at another meeting during the week.
- The Church Covenant shall be read aloud at a church business meeting at least once each quarter.
Section 2 – For Business
- The fiscal year of the church shall begin the first day of July.
- Quarterly business meetings shall be held once each quarter.
- The Board of Elders shall elect a moderator to conduct these meetings. Robert’s Rules of Order may be used at the discretion of the Elder board for any particular meeting.
- Special business meetings of the church may be called by the Elder, Deacon, or Deaconess Boards, or by written request of any ten voting members, providing the particular object (or objects) of the meeting is clearly stated in the notice. No other business shall be transacted in such special meetings. Such notice must be given in at least two regular services previous to the meeting or by written notice served upon each voting member.
- Full notice of all business meetings of the church shall be given at all regular services of the church on the two Sundays immediately preceding such meetings.
- A quorum shall consist of 25 percent of the voting members, and must be present to conduct business.
- All church officers shall be elected by ballot.
- All business shall be decided by a majority of votes cast except where otherwise provided in this instrument.
- No member may speak more than twice on any question at any business meeting, except by
consent of the chair.
AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION
This constitution may be amended at any business meeting by a two-thirds vote of the qualified members present and voting, provided notice of such an amendment shall have been made at a previous business meeting and announced for two Sundays prior to the proposed meeting.