Articles of Faith
Article I: Name of Church
The name of the church shall be The Timberhill Missionary Baptist Church, Inc.
Article II: Church Covenant
Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior, and on the profession of our faith, having been baptized in the name of the Father, and 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 engage therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian love, to strive for the advancement of this church, in knowledge, holiness, and comfort; to promote its prosperity and spirituality, to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline, and doctrines; to contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor, and the spread of the gospel through all nations.
We also engage to maintain family and secret devotion, to religiously educate our children, to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances, to walk circumspectly in the world, to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements, and exemplary in our deportment, to avoid all tattling, back-biting, and excessive anger; to abstain from the sale and use of intoxicating drinks as a beverage, and to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior.
We further engage to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian sympathy in feeling and courtesy in speech; to be slow to take offense, but always ready for reconciliation, and mindful of the rules of our Savior, to secure it without delay. We, moreover, engage that when we remove from this place we will, as soon as possible, unite with some other church, where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant, and the principles of God’s Word.
Article III: Declaration of Faith
Of the Scriptures
We believe that the Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired, and is a perfect treasure of heavenly instruction (II Tim. 3:16-17), that it has God for its author, salvation for its end (II Tim. 3:15), and truth without any mixture or error for its matter (Prov. 30:5-6), that it reveals the principles by which God will judge us (Rom. 2:12; John 12:47-48), and therefore is, and shall remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union (Phil. 3:16), and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and opinions should be tried (I John 4:1; Isa. 8:20).
Of the True God
We believe that there is one, and only one living and true God, an infinite, intelligent Spirit, whose name is JEHOVAH, the Maker and Supreme Ruler of heaven and earth (John 4:24; Psalm 147:5, 83:18; Heb. 3:4; Rom. 1:20; Jer. 10:10), inexpressibly glorious in holiness (Ex. 15:11), and worthy of all possible honor, confidence, and love (Mark 12:30; Rev. 4:11), and that in the unity of the Godhead there are three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19; John 15:26), equal in every divine perfection (John 10:30), and executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption (Eph. 2:18; II Cor. 13:14).
Of the Fall of Man
We believe that man was created in holiness, under the law of his Maker (Gen. 1:27, 31; Eccl. 7:29), but by voluntary transgression fell from that holy and happy state (Gen. 3:6-24; Rom. 5:12), in consequence of which all mankind are now sinners (Rom. 5:19; John 3:6; Psalm 51:5), not by constraint but by choice (Isa. 53:6, Gen. 6:12; Rom. 3:9-18), being by nature utterly void of that holiness required by the law of God, positively inclined to evil, and therefore, under just condemnation to eternal ruin (Eph. 2:1-3; Rom. 1:18, 31; 2:1-6), without defense or excuse (Ezek. 18:19-20, Rom. 1:20; 3:19)
Of the Way of Salvation
We believe that the salvation of sinners is wholly of grace (Eph. 2:5; I John 4:10), through the mediatorial offices of the Son of God (John 3:16; 1:1-14), who by the appointment of the Father, freely took upon Him our nature, yet without sin (Phil. 2:6-7; Heb. 2:9, 14), honored the divine law by His personal obedience (Isa. 42:21; Phil. 2:8), and by His death made a full atonement for our sins (Isa. 53:4-5; Matt. 20:28; Rom. 4:25), that having risen from the dead, He is now enthroned in heaven (Heb. 1:8; Col. 3:1), and united in His wonderful person the tenderest sympathies with divine perfections, He is every way qualified to be a suitable, a compassionate, and an all-sufficient Savior (Heb. 7:25-26; Col. 2:9; Heb. 2:18).
We believe that the great gospel blessing which Christ (John 1:16; Eph. 3:8) secures to such as believe in Him is justification (Acts 13:39; Rom. 5:1), that justification includes the pardon of sin (Rom. 5:9), and the promise of eternal life on principles of righteousness (Rom. 5:17; Titus 3:5-6), that it is bestowed, not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we may have done, but solely through faith in the Redeemer’s blood (Rom. 4:4-5), by virtue of which faith His perfect righteousness is freely imputed to us of God (Rom. 5:19; 3:24-28), that it brings us into a state of most blessed peace and favor with God, and secures every other blessing needful for time and eternity (Rom. 5:1-3,11; Matt. 6:33).
Of the Freeness of Salvation
We believe that the blessings of salvation are made free to all by the Gospel of Christ (Isa. 55:1; Rev. 22:17), that it is the immediate duty of all to accept them by a cordial, penitent, and obedient faith (Rom. 16:26; Mark 1:15; Rom. 1:15-17), and that nothing prevents the salvation of the greatest sinner on earth, but his own inherent depravity and voluntary rejection of the Gospel of Christ (John 5:40; Rom. 9:32) which rejection involves him in an aggravated condemnation (John 3:19; Matt. 11:20).
Of Grace in Regeneration
We believe that in order to be saved, sinners must be regenerated, or born again (John 3:3, 6-7), that regeneration consists in giving a holy disposition to the mind (II Cor. 5:17; Ez. 36:26; Rom. 2:28-29), that it is effected in a manner above our comprehension by the power of the Holy Spirit, in connection with divine truth (John 3:8; 1:13; James 1:16-18), as to secure our voluntary obedience to the Gospel of Christ (I Peter 1:22-25, I John 5:1; Eph. 4:20-24), and that its proper evidence appears in the holy fruits of repentance, and faith, and newness of life (Eph. 5:9; Rom. 8:9; Gal. 5:16-23; Eph. 3:14-21).
Of Repentance and Faith
We believe that repentance and faith are sacred duties, and also inseparable graces, wrought in our souls in regeneration (Mark 1:15; Acts 11:18; Eph. 2:8; 1 John 5:1) whereby being deeply convinced of our guilt, danger, and helplessness, and of the way of salvation by Christ (John 16:8; Acts 2:37-38, 16:30-31), we turn to God with unfeigned contrition, confession, and supplication for mercy (Luke 18:13; James 4:7-10), at the time heartily receiving the Lord Jesus Christ as our Prophet, Priest, and King and relying on Him alone as the only and all-sufficient Savior (Rom. 10:9-13; Acts 3:22-23; Heb. 1:8).
Of God’s Purpose of Grace
We believe that election is the eternal purpose of God according to which he graciously regenerates, sanctifies, and saves sinners (II Tim. 1:8-9; Eph. 1:3-14; Rom. 11:5-6), that being perfectly consistent with the free agency of man it comprehends all the means in connection with the end (II Thess. 2:13-14; Acts 13:48; John 10:16), that it is a most glorious display of God’s sovereign goodness, being infinitely free, wise, holy, and unchangeable (Ex. 33:18-19; Matt. 20:15; Eph. 1:11; Rom. 9:23-24, 11:28-36), that it utterly excludes boasting and promotes humility, love, prayer, praise, trust in God, and active imitation of His free mercy (I Cor. 4:7, 1:26-31; Col. 3:12), that it encourages the use of means in the highest degree (II Tim. 2:10; I Cor. 9:22; Rom. 8:28-30; John 6:37-40), that it may be ascertained by its effects in all who truly believe the Gospel of Christ (I Thess. 1:4-10), that it is the foundation of Christian assurance (Rom. 8:28-31, 11:29), and that to ascertain it with regard to ourselves demands and deserves the utmost diligence (II Peter 1:10-11; Phil. 3:12).
We believe that sanctification is the process by which according to the will of God, we are made partakers of His holiness (I Thess. 4:3, 5:23; II Cor. 7:1), that it is a progressive work (Prov. 4:18; II Peter 1:5-8, Phil. 3:12-16), that it is begun in regeneration (1 John 2:29; Rom. 8:5; Phil. 1:9-11), and that it is carried on in the hearts of believers by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, the Sealer, and Comforter, in the continual use of the appointed means especially, the Word of God, self-examination, self-denial, watchfulness, and prayer (Phil. 2:12-13; Eph. 4:11-12; I Peter 2:2).
Of The Perseverance of the Saints
We believe that such only are real believers as endure unto the end (John 8:31; I John 2:27-28, 3:9), that their persevering attachment to Christ is the grand mark which distinguishes them from superficial professions (I John 2:19; Matt. 13:20-21), that a special providence watches over their welfare (Rom. 8:28; Matt. 6:30-33), and that they are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation (Phil. 1:6, 2:12-13; Jude 24-25).
Of the Harmony of the Law and the Gospel
We believe that the law of God is the eternal and unchangeable rule of His moral government (Rom. 3:31; Matt. 5:17; Luke 16:17), that it is holy, just and good (Rom. 7:12, 14-22; Gal. 3:21), and that the inability which the scriptures ascribe to fallen men to fulfill its precepts, arises entirely from their love of sin (Rom. 8:7-8; Jer. 13:23), to deliver from which, and to restore them through a Mediator to unfeigned obedience to the holy law, is one great end of the Gospel of Christ and of the means of grace connected with the establishment of the church (Rom. 8:2,4,10:4; Jude 20-21; Matt. 16:17-18).
Of a Gospel Church
We believe that the church of Christ is a visible congregation of baptized believers (I Cor. 1:1-3; Matt. 18:17; Acts 5:11, 8:1), associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the Gospel of Christ (Acts 2:41-42; II Cor. 8:5; I Cor. 5:12-13), observing the ordinances of Christ (I Cor. 11:2, 23; II Thess. 3:6; Rom. 16:17-20), governed by His laws (Matt. 28:20; John 14:15,21; I John 4:21), and exercising the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in them by His Word (Eph. 4:7; I Cor. 14:12; Phil. 1:27), that its only Scriptural officers are bishops, or pastors, and deacons (Phil. 1:1; Acts 14:23; I Tim. 3), whose qualifications, claims, and duties are defined in the Epistles of Timothy and Titus.
Of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper
We believe that Christian baptism is the immersion in water of a believer (Acts 8:36-39; Matt. 3:5-6; John 3:22-23), into the name of the Father, and Son, and Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19; Acts 10:47-48), to show forth in a solemn and beautiful emblem of our faith in the crucified, buried, and risen Savior, with its effects in our death to sin and resurrection to a new life (Rom. 6:4; Col. 2:12), that it is a prerequisite to the privilege of a church relation, and to the Lord’s Supper (Acts 2:41-42; Matt. 28:19-20), in which the members of the church by the sacred use of bread and wine, are to commemorate together the undying love of Christ (I Cor. 11:26; Matt. 26:26-29), preceded always by solemn self-examination (I Cor. 11:28, 5:1,8).
Of the Lord’s Day
We believe that the first day of the week is the Lord’s Day (Acts 20:7; Col. 2:16-17; John 20:19; I Cor. 16:1-2), and is to be kept sacred to religious purposes (Ex. 20:8; Rev. 1:10; Psalm 118:24) by abstaining from all secular labor and sinful recreations (Isa. 58:13-14, 56:2-8), by devout observance of all the means of grace, both private (Psalm 118:15) and public (Heb. 10:24-25; Acts 11:26, 13:44), and by preparation for that rest that remaineth for the people of God (Heb. 4:3-11).
The Civil Government
We believe that civil government is of divine appointment for the interests and good order of human society (Rom. 13:1-7; Deut. 16:18; II Sam. 23:3), and that magistrates are to be prayed for, conscientiously honored, and obeyed (Matt. 22:21; Titus 3:1; I Peter 2:13; I Tim. 2:1-8), except only in those things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 5:29; Matt. 10:28; Dan. 3:15-18, 6:7-10), who is the only Lord of conscience, and the Prince of the kings of the earth (Matt. 23:10; Rom. 14:4; Rev. 19:16; Psalm 72:11).
Of the Righteous and the Wicked
We believe that there is a radical and essential difference between the righteous and the wicked (Ma. 3:18; Prov. 12:26; Rom. 6;16), that such only as through faith are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and sanctified by the Spirit of our God, are truly righteous in His esteem (Rom. 1:17, 7:6, 6:18-22; I John 2:29, 3:7), while all such as continue in impenitence and unbelief are in His sight wicked and under the curse (I John 5:19, Gal. 3:10; John 3:36), and this distinction holds among men both in and after death (Prov. 14:32, 10:24; Luke 16:25; John 8:21-24).
Of the World to Come
We believe that the end of this world is approaching (I Peter 4:7, I Cor. 7:29-31, Heb. 1:10-12; Matt. 24:35), that at the Last Day, Christ will descend from heaven (Acts 1:11, Rev. 1:7; Heb. 9:28; I Thess. 4:13-18; 5:1-11), and raise the dead from the grave to final retribution; a solemn separation will then take place (Matt. 13:37-43, 49; 24:30-31, 25:31-33), that the wicked (Acts 24:15; I Cor. 15:12-58; John 5:28-29) will be adjudged to endless punishment, and the righteous to endless joy (Matt. 25:35-41; Rev. 22:11; I Cor. 6:9-10; Rom. 6:22) and that this judgment will fix forever the final state of men in heaven or in hell on principles of righteousness (Rom. 3:5-6; II Thess. 1:6-12; Heb. 6:1-2; Rom. 2:2-16).
1. We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. We believe that any form of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery, and pornography are sinful perversions of God's gift of sex. We believe that God disapproves of and forbids any attempt to alter one's gender by surgery or appearance. (Gen. 2:24; Gen. 19:5; Gen. 26:8-9; Lev. 18:1-30; Rom. 1:26-29; 1 Cor. 5:1; 6-9; 1 Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4).
2. We believe that the only Scriptural marriage is the joining of one man and one woman. (Gen. 2:24; Rom. 7:2; 1 Cor. 7:10; Eph. 5:22-23)
Lawsuits Between Believers
We believe that Christians are prohibited from bringing civil lawsuits against other Christians or the church to resolve personal disputes. We believe the church possesses all the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between members. We do believe, however, that a Christian may seek compensation for injuries from another Christian's insurance company as long as the claim is pursued without malice or slander. (1 Cor. 6:1-8; Eph. 4:31-32).
Article IV: Polity
- The form of government of this church shall be congregational; that is the governmental power of the church is with the members The right of a majority of the members of this church to rule in accordance with the law of Christ.
- This power cannot be transferred or delegated and action of the church is final.
- The membership of this church shall have equal right privileges in work and worship of this church, except those under disciplinary action.
- That this church is self-governing and independent of all other organizations, both civil and ecclesiastical.
- That she may associate with other churches of like faith for the purpose of furthering the work of Christ, but said associations are to have no power over the church.
- Christ is the head and great lawgiver and no other head is recognized.
- The laws of our Savior and Lord as laid down in the New Testament are an all-sufficient rule of faith and practice.
Article V: Membership
Membership may be attained as follows:
- Members may be received on profession of faith and baptism.
- By letter from another church of like faith and order.
- Upon a statement, if proof can be submitted that said individual has made a public profession of faith in Christ and has been scripturally baptized, if through the destruction of the records or the disbanding of the church of which he was a member, a letter cannot be obtained.
- The reception and the dismissal of members must be by the unanimous approval of the congregation.
- Members against whom disciplinary action has been taken may be restored to fellowship when they repent and ask the church to restore them.
Membership may cease as follows:
- By a letter of dismissal to a church of like faith and order.
- By exclusion.
- By death.
The membership of any individual member shall automatically terminate without notice if the member states that he or she is actively involved in any conduct described in Article III: Sexual Immorality or files a lawsuit in violation of Article III: Lawsuits Between Believers.
Article VI: Church discipline
No complaint shall be brought into the business session of the Church by an aggrieved party against transgressing brethren respecting trespasses of a private nature until the aggrieved party has complied with the directions given by our Lord in Matthew 18:15-17. Disciplinary action may be taken by the Church against any member who doesn’t conform to the covenant and declaration of faith of the Church. Any member under disciplinary action of the Church shall have no right to vote in the assembly.
Article VII: Officers of the Church
No person other than a member of this church in good standing and a regular and consistent attender of its services shall be qualified to hold any office. All officers of the Church or Sunday School are required to attend meetings set or called by the Church for their advancement, professionally, or spiritually.
Section 1 – Pastor
- The pastor shall be recognized as the leader of the Church and a member ex-officio of all committees.
- All officers of the Church shall be instructed in the performance of their duties by the pastor.
- The Church shall have a pastor chosen by the congregation. His term of office shall be indefinite and when either he or the Church feels that his work is finished in this field, a notice of thirty (30) days shall be given before termination of said office. The pastor may offer his resignation to the Church at any time, which shall take effect at the end of thirty (30) days or sooner if mutually agreed upon by the Church and the pastor.
- If it is for any good reason believed by a very considerable number of the members of the Church that the office of the pastor should, for all the best interest of the Church, be declared vacant, the Church in regularly convened business session shall raise the question and, by a majority vote, call for a special meeting of the membership and a public notice shall be given to the Church at least two (2) weeks before the meeting is convened to decide the matter, and shall select a moderator pro tem to preside at a meeting designated for the vote of the Church to be taken, and the matter thereby decided. Freedom for free and full discussion of the issue shall be given to all parties concerned and the matter shall be decided and the pulpit declared vacant by a two-thirds (2/3) affirmative vote of the members present.
- No candidate shall ever be considered for the pastorate of this Church who does not agree with the doctrines held by our Baptist people; to our Church Policy and worship; to our faith and practice and this constitution.
- When the office of a pastor is vacant, it shall be the duty of the members of the Church to assemble in a regularly convened business session for the purpose of taking proper steps to call another pastor. A committee may be designated (but not necessarily so) to have the responsibility of securing ministers to supply the pulpit and to cast about for one to be presented to the Church to be heard as a candidate for the position of pastor.
- Any member of the Church shall have the right and privilege to present to the Church or the Committee the name of one to be considered for the office of pastor, if a committee be designated.
- A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members present in a special convened business session for the purpose of electing a pastor, shall be required to elect.
- The Church shall have the pastor secure evangelists for all meetings or ministers for all other special occasions.
- The pastor shall be responsible for obtaining, at the expense of the Church, all necessary supplies pertaining to the office.
- Upon the approval of ministry staff candidate by the church officers, the church will then vote on this position and each candidate. The Pastor shall then be responsible for the hiring and firing of staff.
Section 2 – Deacons
- The election of members to fill the office of deacons shall be by two-thirds (2/3) affirmative vote of members present.
- Such election shall be at a time of vacancy. One in the deacon’s office shall as in the time of the creation of the office in the Church at Jerusalem, regard his most sacred duty as that of assisting the pastor in the carrying of his heavy responsibilities and in relieving him of those things which others may as easily do as he, and which will enable him to give proper time to the study and to the preaching of the Word of God, and to prayer and leadership and organization and care of the Church.
- Members elected to the office of deacon shall be properly instructed in the duties of the office by the pastor of the Church, and at a specified time and in the regular Baptistic way, shall be ordained to service in said office.
- The tenure in office of deacon shall be indefinite, but the office may be declared vacant by the Church at any time the matter of the person’s standing in the Church and community may warrant such action.
- A two-thirds (2/3) affirmative vote of the members present shall be required to declare the office vacant. The deacons shall be elected by the Church and ordained by the Church.
- The number of deacons shall be determined by the needs of the Church.
Section 3 – Trustees
- The Church shall elect and maintain in office a minimum of three (3) trustees, or more, as determined by the recognized needs of the Church or as required by law to hold in trust the properties of the Church.
- The tenure in office shall be for a period of one (1) year.
- The Church may assign the trustees other duties than that above specified, and shall be in keeping with their offices in caring for the buildings and grounds of the Church as shall be desired by the body.
- Where no specified direction is given by the Church, and a need may arise, it shall be the function of the trustees, if that need pertains to the properties of the Church, to act immediately on behalf of the Church and without waiting for special approval of the body.
- Any item of maintenance, purchase, or upkeep that shall exceed $300.00 shall come before the Church for authorization.
- The janitor of the Church shall be employed by the trustees and the work shall also be supervised by them.
- The trustees shall meet for conference as often as those things pertaining to their responsibilities shall seem to them to warrant.
- The trustees will perform a periodic audit of the Financial Secretary and Treasurer’s books.
Section 4 – Financial Secretary (Optional Off.)
- The financial secretary shall be elected by a majority vote of the body for one (1) year.
- The duties of the financial secretary shall be to obtain, at the expense of the Church, the necessary supplies pertaining to the office; keep an accurate record of the giving of the membership and friends of the Church; receive all gifts in envelopes and otherwise; count the same giving, each member due credit on the records for all gifts known to be made, as indicated on the containers or by the method which the money is given, if desired; and said financial secretary shall deposit said monies and deliver a bank deposit receipt for the same to the treasurer.
- The financial secretary shall publish to the membership of the Church the records as kept by him or of the giving of the people and members for the support of the work.
- The financial secretary shall furnish the clerk of the Church a copy of the records of the giving of the people for permanent records of the giving and activities of the members.
Section 5 – Treasurer / Financial Secretary
- The treasurer shall be elected b a majority affirmative vote of the body for one (1) year.
- The treasurer of the Church shall receive from the financial secretary a bank deposit receipt for all monies received and placed in the bank.
- The treasurer shall make a monthly report of the financial status of the Church at the regular business meeting of the Church.
- The treasurer shall pay all current bills allowed and approved by the Church, as funds are available.
- The books of the clerk, financial secretary, and treasurer shall always be made available, upon request, to any member of the Church, who may desire to investigate them concerning any matter of interest to one as a member or to one on behalf of the Church.
- The Church may elect assistant financial secretaries or treasurers as deemed necessary. These shall assist in the keeping of the records of the gifts of the friends and members of the Church. These shall in the absence of the financial secretary or the treasurer from the Church, assume the duties of each taking care of them in the regular way. At the request of the financial secretary or the treasurer, the assistants may (assist) in the counting and handling of the monies.
- The financial secretary or his assistant shall provide the membership regularly and also the friends who desire to make gifts, with envelopes and shall keep a sufficient supply on hand to meet the needs, at the expense of the Church.
Section 6 – Clerk or Secretary
- The clerk or secretary shall be elected by a majority affirmative vote of the body for one (1) year, and shall be responsible, at the expense of the Church, for obtaining necessary supplies pertaining to the needs of the office.
- The clerk or secretary shall keep the records of all business meetings; shall keep the membership records of members received; shall keep records of the giving and activities in the office of all members of the Church; and shall do such correspondence as required of on in the office of clerk or secretary, and such other duties as stated in this constitution.
- The Church may elect an assistant clerk or secretary to assist in the same duties.
Section 7 – Sunday School Superintendent
- The superintendent shall be elected by a majority affirmative vote of the body for one (1) year.
- Sunday School officers and teachers shall be nominated by a committee composed of pastor, Sunday School Superintendent, and deacons and approved by a majority affirmative vote of the members present for a period of one (1) year.
- The superintendent shall supervise all activities and shall be responsible, at the expense of the Church, for any necessary supplies for Sunday School. Nominations may be made from the floor on the night of election, by any member of the Church.
Article VIII: Meetings for the Transaction of Church Business
Section 1 – Annual Meetings
- The annual congregational meeting shall be held each year on the first Sunday night in January. Special meetings may be called by trustees. The business to be transacted during a special meeting shall be limited to matters stated in the call to the meeting.
- Forty percent (40%) of the active membership, or fifty members, whichever is less, shall constitute a quorum for an annual or special meeting. Where a quorum is required, but not present, the meeting shall adjourn and notice be given of another meeting.
- The Church may be convened in special business sessions for the reception of members, dismissal of members, or to consider issues arising in emergency. This may be done by the pastor in connection with any of the public meetings of the Church and a regular monthly business meeting of the Church will be held for the transaction of all general matters of the Church business on the first Tuesday of each month.
- All current bills and expenses voted by the Church shall be paid by the treasurer of the Church without further action in any business session being necessary but all other items of expense to be met by the Church shall be submitted before the Church for her approval before the bill is created. However the trustees of the church may approve a transaction in such cases where it is in urgent demand for immediate action.
- Members of the Church who have not been so authorized by a majority affirmative vote of the body in a business session shall not make purchases of items of any kind unless specifically authorized to do so by the pastor and trustees of the Church as an emergency measure.
Section 2 – Pastor
The pastor in charge of the Church shall feel at liberty to attend the meetings of all groups, committees, trustees, or deacons and shall be considered as the head of all officers and organizations within the life of the Church and shall always give instructions and advice concerning the working of various groups or officers of the Church which he believes should be given.
Section 3 – Meetings of Trustees, Committees, Deacons, Officers, and any other group of workers.
Meetings of all such shall be called as often and as regularly as the responsibilities and services assigned them would require for the discharge of duties and also when a meeting will not interfere with any stated meeting within the Church or the Church public worship or business meetings.
Article IX: Meetings for Public Worship
Section 1 – Meeting of the Church (Weekly)
- Preaching service, prayer meetings, and Sunday School will be held as meets the desire of the congregation. Revival or evangelistic meetings may be scheduled as the Church may choose.
- Other meetings may be scheduled as deemed necessary by the Church.
Section 2 – Meetings of the Sunday School
- A public service shall be conducted regularly on Sunday by the Church, in the form of a school, in which the Word of God shall be used as the main textbook and persons elected in the manner set forth in this constitution shall supervise the various divisions of the school, keep the records, take up the offerings, and teach the various classes.
- The Sunday School shall be free for all people who wills to attend and receive the benefit of the teachings and training offered to those who desire to improve themselves in the Christian service. The Sunday School shall be conducted, as a religious service in which there shall be singing and praying and the teaching of the Bible.
Section 3 – Special Meetings
- Special meetings may be appointed and arranged on certain days during the year by the Church. Such days may be designated as Rally Day, Children’s Day, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Thanksgiving Day, Easter Sunday, and any days of special fellowship, etc.
Section 4 – Use of the Church
- Trustees shall be in charge of arrangements for the use of the Church building by the various groups and Sunday School classes whose activities may require a definite schedule, arranged to make available certain parts of the building for use by certain groups at given and appointed hours and days. Except however, their responsibilities in this connection shall not extend to include the weekend public worship or Sunday School service, nor any mid-week prayer meeting or Bible study, nor business meetings of the Church.
Section 5 – Notice
- Notice of annual, special, or adjourned meetings shall be given by announcement in at least one regular church service and posted on the Church bulletin board for at least one week.
Article X: Real Estate
Section 1 – Procedure
- All real estate shall be in the name of the corporation. The real estate of the corporation may be mortgaged or sold and additional real estate may be bought by the trustees after first presenting the matter to the congregation at an annual or special meeting and securing an affirmative vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the members present approving the proposed action.
- The notice of such meeting must contain a statement of such proposal for buying, selling, or mortgaging real estate.
Article XI: Amendments
Section 1 – Method
- Alterations, amendments, or reap of the By-laws or any section thereof may be made by a two-thirds (2/3) affirmative vote of those present at any annual or special meeting if the notice of such meeting contains a statement of the proposed alteration, amendment, or repeal.
Rules of Decorum
- No important business should be done without an attendance considered to be representative.
- The order of business may be suspended at any time by vote of the meeting, or by the moderator, no one objecting.
- Every business meeting shall be opened with prayer.
- All business should be presented by a motion made by one member and seconded by another.
- Every motion made and seconded shall come under consideration of the assembly unless withdrawn by the member who made it (I Cor. 14:40).
- A resolution and even an ordinary motion when requested should be presented in writing. A question is not to be discussed until it has been moved and seconded, and then stated by the moderator.
- A motion before the meeting must be disposed of before any other questions can be introduced, except questions of privilege.
Questions of Privilege
- While a motion is pending, it may be amended by another motion. An amendment should not essentially change the nature or design of the original motion. An amendment to an amendment may be made, but it is not desirable beyond this.
- A substitute may be offered for any motion or amendment under discussion which may or may not change the meaning of the motion.
- A question may be interrupted and deferred by a motion to lay it on the table. If the motion is for an indefinite time, it is to be regarded as a final dismissal of the questions, though anyone may have the right subsequently to call it up again. A motion to lay on the table for a specified time is not debatable.
- Discussion may be cut short by a vote to take the previous questions, that is the question as originally announced with any additions or amendments that have been made. If carried, the question must be taken up and immediately disposed of without debate. A motion to take up the previous questions is not debatable.
- If when a question is introduced, a member objects to its discussion as foreign, profitless, or contentious, the moderator shall immediately put the question, “Shall the question be discussed?” If decided in the negative, the whole matter is at once dismissed. The motion as to whether the question shall be discussed is not debatable.
- A question under discussion may be referred by a motion and a vote to a committee.
- A motion to reconsider a motion previously passed must by made by one who vote for the motion when the previous action was taken. If the motion to reconsider prevails, the original motion is placed before the assembly as at first and may be discussed, rescinded, or reaffirmed.
- The moderator decides all questions of order in debate, but any member dissatisfied with his decision may appeal to the assembly. A vote is then taken upon the questions, “Shall the decision of the moderator be sustained?” The decision of the assembly is final for the purpose of the orderly procedure thereof.
- Anyone speaking on a question should rise in his place and address the moderator by that appellation.
- If two arise and address the moderator at the same time, preference is given to the one farthest from the moderator.
- If two or more persist in speaking at the same time or if any member speaks without rising and addressing the moderator, such person shall be out of order.
- No one speaking may be interrupted without his consent unless he is out of order.
- Remarks should be as brief as possible and to the point, and no member should speak more than three times on any one subject without leave to do so obtained from the assembly; if otherwise, this is out of order.
- Any member speaking or acting in wrath or anger in a threatening or degrading manner so as to shame religion, wound the cause of Christ and grieve true Christians shall be out of order in any assembly of the Church worship or business.
- Any member laughing or whispering in time of public worship, business, or speech, is out of order.
- Any member who according to rules 3,4,5,6 or 7 or otherwise is out of order, may be called to order by the moderator during the public worship or during a business session by the moderator or any member and must abide by these rules.
- The woman hath not the right by the laws of Christ to usurp authority over the man and therefore ought not to speak in the assemblies, deliberations, and only in such particular circumstances that require it.
- Voting by the raising of the hand is to be preferred, although this is at the discretion of the moderator or assembly.
- In cases of special important, voting by secret ballot or by standing may be resorted to.
- A majority vote shall rule in all cases except as otherwise provided by the by-laws.
- Except secret ballot vote, the moderator calls first the affirmative and then the negative and announces at the conclusion whether the motion is carried or lost.
- All members present are allowed to vote except such as may be under discipline.
- The moderator may cast a vote but should rarely claim the privilege.
- Any member being grieved at anything done by the assembly shall hold his or her peace and shall not let the same be known until after the assembly adjourns and shall afterwards speak of the same, such conduct manifestly tends to confuse the assembly and shall be deemed out of order.