Constitution

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CONSTITUTION OF THE

PLAINFIELD BIBLE CHURCH, INC.

OF PLAINFIELD, INDIANA

 

We, the members of Plainfield Bible Church, do voluntarily submit ourselves to the following articles:

 

ARTICLE I - NAME 

This organization shall be known as The Plainfield Bible Church, Inc. of Plainfield, Indiana, hereafter referred to as The Plainfield Bible Church, incorporated under the laws of The State of Indiana.

ARTICLE II - PURPOSE 

  1. To worship God the Father in spirit and in truth in the offering of the sacrifice of praise to God continually. (John 4:24; Hebrews 13:15) 

  1. To proclaim to Plainfield and other regions of the world salvation through faith in the finished work of Christ on Calvary. (Matthew 28:19-20; John 3:16; II Corinthians 5:18-20)

  1. To administer the ordinances of the New Testament, namely Baptism and the Lord's Supper. (Matthew 28:19-20; I Corinthians 11:23-26)

  1. To study and practice godliness as set forth in the sacred scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, realizing that a Christian is totally under grace in all manner of service and obedience. That the saints might be edified and fully equipped unto the work of the ministry. And that, through gracious and holy living, the Church might be lights unto a lost and dying world. (Ephesians 4:11-13; II Timothy 1:9; I Peter 1:14-19)

  1. To provide a spiritual watchcare over each other and to promote a spirit of love for the building up of one another in the Christian Faith. (Ephesians 4:11-13; I Thessalonians 4:9-10; Hebrews 10:24, 13:17)

                                 ARTICLE III - DECLARATION OF FAITH 

SECTION 1 - THE SCRIPTURES

 

We believe the whole of the book called the Bible (the combined 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) to be God's inerrant and infallible revelation to man. We believe all scripture to be “inspired by God” and therefore profitable in all areas of faith and practice. We understand inspiration to be God's superintendence of the human authors so that, using their own individual personalities, they composed and recorded without error, in the words of the original autographs, His revelation to man. (II Timothy 3:16-17; II Peter 1:21; Revelation 22:18-19)

 

We believe that God in His perfect providence has faithfully preserved His revelation to man so that today we possess accurate and reliable texts of both testaments. (Isaiah 40:8; Matthew 5:18; I Peter 1:24-25)

 

SECTION 2 - THE TRINITY

 

We believe that the Godhead eternally exists in three persons, The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit; and that these three are one God having precisely the same nature, attributes and perfections, and worthy of precisely the same homage, confidence and obedience. (Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 12:29; John 1:1-14; Acts 5:3-4; II Corinthians 13:14; Galatians 1:1; Hebrews 1:1-3)

 

SECTION 3 - GOD

 

We believe that God is the creator and sustainer of all things. God, by the Word of His power, instantaneously created the heavens and the earth without pre-existent material and that this creation took place in six literal, twenty-four hour days. (Genesis 1; Exodus 20:11; Psalm 33:6, 9)

 

We believe God's attributes to be those qualities which characterize His Person. The following are only a few of those attributes.

God is: 

  1. Eternal - Without beginning nor end. (Genesis 21:33; Psalm 90:2)

  2. Immutable - Unchangeable. (Malachi 3:6; James 1:17)

  3. Omnipresent - Everything within His presence. (Psalm 139:7-10)

  4. Omniscient - Knows all. (Psalm 94:11; 139:2; Acts 15:8)

  5. Omnipotent - All powerful. (Genesis 18:14; Revelation 19:6)

  6. Sovereign - In authority over all. (Psalm 66:7; Ephesians 1:11)

  7. Holy - Absolutely pure and righteous. (Psalm 99:3; Isaiah 6:3; I Peter 1:16)

SECTION 4 - CHRIST

 

            A.        His Pre-existence

 

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the Eternal Son of God, the second person in the Godhead, is co-eternal in being with the Father and the Holy Spirit from eternity past. (John 1:1, 14, 17:5; Hebrews 13:8)

 

            B.         His Deity

 

We believe Jesus Christ to be co-identical in substance or essence, co-equal in power and glory, and having the same attributes and perfections as God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. We believe that Jesus Christ has never at any time ceased to be God. (John 1:1, 8:58, 10:30; John 14)

 

            C.         His Virgin Birth

 

We believe that Jesus Christ was miraculously conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit in the womb of the virgin Mary with the result that the second person of the triune God was joined to a real human body and nature. We; therefore, believe that the virgin birth was the method by which the second person of the Godhead entered into humanity and became the God-man. (Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:35)

 

            D.        His Humanity

 

We believe that Jesus Christ the Eternal Son of God became man and that His human nature was genuine and complete. We believe that the incarnation forever united God with humanity in the God-man, Jesus Christ. (Isaiah 53:2; John 1:1-14; Philippians 2:5-8)

 

            E.         His Sinless Character

 

We believe that Jesus Christ the Eternal Son of God and perfect man, though tempted in all things as we are, yet, was without sin, which did not in any way demean His humanity. Sin, being an intrusion upon humanity and not a necessary element of it, marred man and brought death. Jesus Christ was perfect humanity without ever experiencing sin. (II Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 4:15; I Peter 2:22)

 

            F.         His Death

 

We believe that the death of Jesus Christ was a literal, complete, and final physical death. (John 19:30; Romans 5:6-8; I Corinthians 15:4-5)

 

            G.         His Resurrection

 

We believe in a literal, physical, bodily and personal resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. (Mark 16:6; I Corinthians 15:20-21; I Thessalonians 4:14)

 

            H.        His Redemptive Character

 

We believe that the death of Jesus Christ paid the penalty for sin. We believe that He is the redeemer by His substitutionary death in which He provided unlimited atonement for all sins of all times, and thus sufficient for all men. We believe that this atonement which is available to all, becomes effective only to those who receive Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior from sin. (Galatians 3:13; Hebrews 10:10; I Peter 1:18-19)

 

            I.          His Priestly Ministry

 

We believe that Jesus Christ is ascended into heaven at the right hand of God to intercede on the behalf of believers as High Priest and Advocator. We also believe that as all judgment has been given unto the Son, that He as the Judge will evaluate the works of believers at the Bema (Judgment Seat of Christ), and those of unbelievers at the Great White Throne Judgment. (John 5:22, 26-27; II Corinthians 5:10; Hebrews 1:3, 7:25, I John 2:1; Revelation 20)

 

            J.          His Return

 

We believe that Jesus Christ will return to the earth and that there are two distinct phases of His coming revealed in Scripture: the Rapture of the saints and the revelation of Christ. These two phases are seven years apart. We believe the return of Christ for the saints is imminent, literal, bodily, personal, pretribulational and premillennial. (John 14:2-3; Acts 1:11; I Corinthians 15:51-52; Philippians 3:20; I Thessalonians 4:13-18; James 5:8)

 

SECTION 5 - THE HOLY SPIRIT

 

            A.   His Deity

 

We believe that the Holy Spirit, the third person of the God-head, is co-identical in substance or essence, co-equal in power and glory, and having the same attributes and perfections as God the Father and God the Son. (Matthew 28:19; John 15:26, 16:13-14; Acts 5:3-4; I Corinthians 2:11; II Corinthians 13:14)

 

            B.         His Personality

 

We believe that the Holy Spirit is not just an influence, power, or force, but an eternal person having intellect, emotion and will. (I Corinthians 2:10-11; Ephesians 4:30)

 

            C.         His Work

 

                        1.         In Convicting:

 

We believe the present ministry of the Holy Spirit is restraining sin in the world, convicting the world of sin, righteousness and judgment. (John 16:8-11; II Thessalonians 2:7)

 

                        2.         In Regenerating:

 

We believe He is the supernatural agent in the new birth through His work of regeneration. (John 3:5; II Corinthians 3:6; Titus 3:5)

 

                        3.         In Indwelling:

 

We believe in the indwelling of the Spirit in the believer. This indwelling takes place at the time of salvation; it is God's pledge of the believer's complete redemption, and is permanent in nature. (Romans 8:9; I Corinthians 6:19; Ephesians 1:13, 4:30)

 

                        4.         In Baptizing:

 

We Believe the baptism of the Spirit to be the work of the Holy Spirit placing each and every believer, in this present dispensation, into the body of Christ. (I Corinthians 12:13)

 

                        5.         In Filling:

 

We believe in the filling of the Spirit in the believer. The filling is not a second work of grace, a completion of salvation, or a second blessing. It is the believer being controlled by the Spirit through a continual dedicated and dependent life producing a Christ likeness in character. (Galatians 5:16; 22-25; Ephesians 5:18)

 

                        6.         In Teaching:

 

We believe that the Holy Spirit is the divine teacher who guided his apostles into all truth and who teaches all believers and reveals to them the deep things of God. (John 14:26; 16:12-15; I Corinthians 2:9-15; I John 2:20, 27)

 

                        7.         In Equipping:

 

We believe that the Holy Spirit is sovereign in the bestowment of gifts and that spiritual gifts are dispensed to the church for the building up and good of the body. We believe the apostolic sign gifts such as speaking in tongues and the working of miracles gradually ceased as the New Testament scriptures were completed and their authority established. (I Corinthians 12:4-11, 14:22; II Corinthians 12:12; Ephesians 4:1-12; Hebrews 2:3-4; Jude 3)

 

SECTION 6 - SIN

 

            A.        Defined

 

We believe sin to be anything contrary to the nature of God. The standard of God's nature is His Holiness and His revealed will, the Word of God. To fall short of His Holy standard is to sin. (Romans 3:23; I Peter 1:14-15; I John 3:4)

 

            B.         Man's Fall

 

We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God, but that in Adam's sin the race fell, inherited a sinful nature, and became alienated from God. Therefore, in Adam all sin, and are born sinners, in both nature and practice. Because of sin man is condemned, under judgment, without hope, and utterly helpless to remedy his lost condition. He is totally depraved, which does not mean that man is as bad as he can be, but rather that man is as bad off as he can be. He possesses no spark of divinity that simply needs to be fanned; he is spiritually dead and needs to be made alive by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit that comes solely by grace through faith in the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ. (Psalm 51:5; Isaiah 64:6; Romans 3:10-12; Ephesians 2:1-10)

 

            C.         Satan

 

We believe that Satan is the author of sin and the deceiver of Eve in the fall. That he is the open and declared enemy of God and man, and that he shall be eternally punished in the Lake of Fire. (Job 1:6-7; Isaiah 14:12-17; Matthew 4:2-11; Revelation 20:10)

 

SECTION 7 - SALVATION

 

            A.        By Grace Through Faith

 

We believe that salvation is the gift of God, brought to many by grace and received by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is by grace in that salvation is totally a work of God for man and therefore it is apart from any sacraments, good works, or human merit. (John 1:12; Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5)

 

            B.         Available to All

 

We believe that this salvation is available to all men, but effective for only those who repent from their sin and turn to Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. (Acts 17:30; Romans 6:23; I Timothy 2:3-6)

 

            C.         Immediate Justification

 

We believe man is immediately justified by God and receives eternal life at the moment of his conversion. This conversion is what Jesus Christ demanded when He said “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.” (John 3:3)

 

            D.        Eternally Secure

 

We believe that all, once born again by the Spirit of God, are kept by God's power alone, and are therefore secure in Christ forever, sealed by the Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance. This eternal salvation rests in the faithfulness of God, not in the faithfulness of man. Therefore, it is the privilege of the believer to rejoice in the assurance of his salvation through the testimony of God's Word, which; however, clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as a license to carry out the desires of the flesh. (John 6:37-40, 10:27-30; Galatians 5:13; Ephesians 1:13-14, 4:1; Philippians 1:6; I Peter 1:3-5; I John 2:1-2)

 

SECTION 8 - THE CHURCH

 

            A.        Defined

 

We believe that the church, the body and bride of Christ, is a spiritual organism and New Testament institution composed of all born again believers of this present age. We believe the local church is the visible expression of the “Body of Christ” and that God's program for this age is to be carried out through the local church, the pillar and foundation of the truth. (I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:22-23, 5:25-27)

 

            B.         Ordinances

 

We believe that our Lord Jesus Christ has left the ordinances of Baptism, the mode of which shall be by immersion, and the Lord's Supper to be observed by the church in commemoration of His person and work. We believe these ordinances, having been given to the church, should be administered under the authority of the local church. (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42; I Corinthians 11:2, 23-26)

 

            C.         Separation

 

                        1.         We believe in the separation of the local church from all affiliations and fellowships who deny the fundamentals of the Christian faith. (Romans 16:17)

 

                        2.         We believe in the separation of the local church from those activities of the world that dishonor the Savior. (Romans 12:1-2; I John 2:15-17)

 

                        3.         We believe that, though Christians are commanded to be good citizens and obey those placed in authority over us, the church as an institution should be separate from the state. (Matthew 22:21)

 

            D.        Government

 

                        

                        1.         We believe the local New Testament church is autonomous, self-governing, self-supporting, and self-propagating. (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 13:1-3)

 

                        2.         We believe that it is the responsibility of all members to seek to have a spirit of eager cooperation and submission to their leaders. (Romans 15:2; Hebrews 13:17)

 

            E.         Responsibility

 

                        We believe it is the church's task to glorify God through:

 

                        1.         Regular corporate worship. (I Corinthians 16:2; Hebrews 10:25)

 

                        2.         Evangelism of the lost. (II Corinthians 5:18-19)

 

                        3.         Edification of the saints. (Ephesians 4:11-16)

 

                        4.         Caring for its own. (I Timothy 5)

 

                        5.         Doing good in the world. (Galatians 6:10)

 

SECTION 9 - FUTURE EVENTS

 

            A.        The Second Advent (Coming) of Christ

 

We believe the second advent of Christ is premillennial and will take place in two distinct phases. (Revelation 3:10, 19:7-14)

 

                      1.  The first phase involves the personal (Acts 1:11; I Thessalonians 4:13-18), imminent (Titus 2:13; Revelation 22:20), and pretribulational (I Thessalonians 1:10, 5:9), coming of the Lord Jesus for His church. The Rapture of the Church is therefore the believers comforting (I Thessalonians 4:18), blessed (Titus 2:13), and purifying (I John 3:2-3) hope and expectancy.

 

                        2.         The second phase of the second advent of Christ will take place immediately after the tribulation when Christ will return to earth with His saints, in order to establish His millennial kingdom. (Zechariah 14:4-11; II Thessalonians 1:7-10; Revelation 19:11-16, 20:1-6)

 

            B.         The Eternal State

 

                        1.         We believe in the bodily resurrection of all men. The saved shall be raised to eternal life, and the unsaved to judgment and everlasting punishment. (Matthew 25:46; John 5:28-29; Revelation 20:4-15)     

 

                        2.         We believe that at death the believer is absent from the body, but present with the Lord where in conscious bliss he awaits the first resurrection when he will be reunited with his resurrected body to be glorified forever with the Lord. (I Corinthians 15:51-57; II Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:21; I Thessalonians 4:17)

 

                        3.         We believe that at death unbelievers go to be in conscious misery until the second resurrection, when they shall be reunited with their resurrected bodies to appear before Christ at the Great White Throne Judgment. Not to be annihilated, but to suffer everlasting, conscious punishment under the wrath of a Holy God. (Matthew 25:41-46; Mark 9:43-48; Luke 16:19-26; Revelation 20:15) 

 

                         ARTICLE IV - CHURCH MEMBERSHIP

SECTION 1 - PURPOSE OF MEMBERSHIP

 

We believe that those who place their faith in Jesus Christ are immediately baptized by the Holy Spirit into one united spiritual Body, the Church (I Corinthians 12:12-13, 20) of which Christ is the head (Ephesians 1:22). While this unique spiritual organism designed by Christ (Matthew 16:18) is made up of all born again believers in this present age, those who have trusted Christ as Savior are clearly directed to associate themselves together in local assemblies (I Corinthians 12:18-20; Hebrews 10:25).

 

We believe the local church is an absolute necessity for every believer in order to receive the ministry of the Word (I Thessalonians 5:12), to exercise his or her spiritual gift(s) (I Peter 4:10), to experience fellowship and mutual encouragement (Hebrews 10:25) and to be accountable to spiritual leaders (Hebrews 13:17).

 

SECTION 2 - APPLICATION FOR MEMBERSHIP

 

All requests for membership shall be made to a Pastor, an Elder, or a Deacon. Upon making such request, the person shall be given an application for membership, along with a copy of the Constitution of the Plainfield Bible Church. The Board of Elders shall then meet with the applicant following receipt of the application. Each applicant shall become familiar with the Constitution and testify publicly before the Board of Elders concerning his or her personal relationship to Jesus Christ.

 

SECTION 3 - ADMISSION TO MEMBERSHIP

 

Applicants admitted to membership must meet the following requirements:

 

                        1.         They are to give their personal testimony of faith in Jesus Christ to the Elders.

 

                        2.         They are to give their assent in this meeting of agreement and cooperation with the statement of faith and church polity as set forth in the PBC Constitution.

 

                        3.         They are required to have been baptized as a believer by immersion.

 

Applicants admitted to membership by the Elders shall be presented as a member at a worship service designated by the Pastor or Elders.

 

SECTION 4 - VOTING PRIVILEGES

 

Membership in this church shall only entitle the member to vote at meetings of the members on those matters submitted to the church membership by the Board of Elders. Voting privileges are restricted to members who have passed their sixteenth (16) birthday and shall not be assignable.

 

Only persons whose names stand on the membership records of the church on the day of any meeting of the church members, shall be entitled to vote at such a meeting. Every church member, age 16 and over, shall be entitled to one vote.

 

Those admitted to the church membership do not constitute a legislative body and they cannot vote on or pass resolutions binding upon the Corporation, nor shall they have any equity in the real property of the Corporation, or rights to vote on its disposal.

 

SECTION 5 - REMOVAL FROM ROLL

 

A member of this church who shall willfully, without plausible reason or excuse, absent himself from the services of this church shall be removable at the discretion of the Board of Elders.

 

The membership roll shall be examined, updated and posted by the Board of Elders each June and December.

 

SECTION 6 - DISCIPLINE OF MEMBERS

 

Members of this church who shall err in doctrine or conduct shall be subject to discipline according to Matthew 18:15-18. It shall be the duty of any member of this church who has knowledge of the erring member's heresy or misconduct to warn and to correct such erring member in private. If said erring member does not heed this warning, then the warning member shall again go to the erring member accompanied by one or two witnesses to warn and correct such erring member. If said erring member still refuses to heed this warning, it shall be brought to the attention of the Elders who shall tell it to the church.

 

If said erring member refuses to heed the repeated warnings and correction of the Elders and the Church, he or she shall be publicly dismissed from the Church.

 

The above procedure of church discipline must always be done with the goal of restoration of the erring member. “Brethren, even if a man is caught in any trespass, you who are spiritual, restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, lest you too be tempted.” (Galatians 6:1)

 

SECTION 7 - REGULAR MEETINGS

 

A regular annual meeting of the members shall be held at the church in January of each year. At such regular annual meeting, the members shall consider reports of the affairs of the church, and transact such other business as the Elders determine shall be brought before the meeting, including but not limited to affirmation of the appointments made by the Elders of those qualified in the various other offices.

 

SECTION 8 - SPECIAL MEETINGS

 

Special meetings of the members may be called at any time by order of the Pastor, the Chairman or Vice Chairman, or by a quorum of the members of the Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 9 - QUORUM

 

At all meetings of the members, whether regular or special, the members present shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

 

                                    ARTICLE V - ELDERS

SECTION 1 - POWERS

 

Subject to limitations of the Articles and the Bylaws and of pertinent restrictions of the Corporations Code of the State of Indiana, all the activities and affairs of the Corporation shall be exercised by or under the direction of the Board of Elders, who are responsible for shepherding and having oversight of the flock. Without prejudice to such general powers, but subject to the same limitations, it is hereby expressly declared that the Board shall have the following powers in addition to the other powers enumerated in these bylaws:

 

            A.        To select and remove all the officers, pastors, staff and employees of the church, prescribe such duties for them and fix the terms of their offices and their compensation.

 

            B.         To establish policies and practices for the church consistent with the purposes as set forth in Article II.

 

            C.         To assist the Pastor in the administration of the ordinances of baptism and communion.

 

            D.        To buy and sell property and other assets, to borrow money, and to incur indebtedness for the purposes of the church.

 

SECTION 2 - NUMBER

 

The Board of Elders shall consist of no less than (3) and may be as many as meet the qualifications as set forth in Section Four (4).

 

SECTION 3 - SELECTION AND TERM OF OFFICE

 

Recommendations to fill the office of Elder shall be requested once a year from all church members. A Nominating Committee consisting of not less than five (5) active church members shall be appointed by the Board of Elders, who will also designate a chairman of the committee. This committee shall review all nominations and determine each nominee's qualifications. Members of the nominating committee may be nominees, but no committee member shall nominate himself. A proposed slate of nominees prepared by the nominating committee shall then be submitted to the Board of Elders for their review and comment. The Board shall add to the list, disapprove and or approve nominations. The church secretary shall publicly post the nominees approved by the Elders in alphabetical order at least three weeks prior to the annual meeting of the church members. At this meeting, the slate of nominees shall be presented to the members to affirm the decision of the Elders. If the slate of nominees is affirmed, the newly elected Elders shall assume office immediately. Each Elder shall serve until the next annual meeting and prior to the annual meeting each Elder shall reexamine himself to his qualifications and desire to serve another year.

 

In addition to the foregoing, any Pastor/Teacher who has been selected and confirmed in accordance with Article VII, Section I, shall be considered an Elder once confirmed, and possess the same powers and authority as any other Elder, except as otherwise provided in this constitution.

 

SECTION 4 - QUALIFICATIONS

 

Each member of the Board of Elders must be an active member of this church and possess the qualification described in I Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:6-9. He shall be:

 

                        1.         Eager to serve (I Timothy 3:1)

 

                        2.         Blameless (above reproach) as a steward of God. (I Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:6-7)

 

                        3.         Husband of one wife - a one-woman man. (I Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:6)

 

                        4.         Temperate - sober, vigilant. (I Timothy 3:2)

 

                        5.         Sober-minded - prudent. (I Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:8)

 

6.          Of good behavior - orderly, respectable. (I Timothy 3:2)

 

                        7.         Given to hospitality. (I Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:8)

 

                        8.         Apt to teach - able to teach (I Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:9); he can exhort believers and refute false teaching.

 

                        9.         Not given to wine. (I Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7)

 

                        10.       Not violent - pugnacious. (I Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7)

 

                        11.       Patient - moderate, forbearing, gentle. (I Timothy 3:3)

 

                        12.       Not a brawler - uncontentious (I Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7); not soon angry or quick tempered.

 

                        13.       Not covetous - not a lover of money (I Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7); not greedy of base gain.

 

                        14.       Rules well his own house (I Timothy 3:4; Titus 1:6); his children are faithful, not accused of rebellion to God.

 

                        15.       Not a novice - not a new convert. (I Timothy 3:6)

 

                        16.       Has a good report or reputation with outsiders. (I Timothy 3:7)

 

                        17.       Not self-willed. (Titus 1:7)

 

                        18.       A lover of good - men and things. (Titus 1:8)

 

                        19.       Just - fair. (Titus 1:8)

 

                        20.       Holy - devout. (Titus 1:8)

 

                        21.       Self-controlled. (Titus 1:8)

 

SECTION 5 - REMOVAL

 

Any Elder may be removed from office if he becomes physically incapacitated, spiritually unqualified, or his inability to serve is established in the minds of the remainder of the Board of Elders.

 

An Elder may also desire to be removed from office for a temporary period for reasons other than those that would disqualify him, such as a needed rest from the oversight responsibilities, a time to reevaluate personal walk and/or priorities, a family illness, etc. The process of his reinstatement at a later time will be determined by the Elders in relation to the circumstances and his qualification and desire to serve again.

 

The foregoing shall also apply to the removal of a Pastor/Teacher as an Elder and employee of the church.

 

SECTION 6 - REGULAR MEETINGS

 

Regular meetings of the Board of Elders shall be held without call or notice on the first Tuesday of each month, unless otherwise modified by the Board. Regular meetings shall be open to church members.

 

The Board of Elders will choose annually a Chairman, Vice Chairman and Secretary at the first regular meeting of each new calendar year.

 

SECTION 7 - SPECIAL MEETINGS

 

Special meetings of the Board of Elders may be called at any time by order of the Chairman or Vice Chairman of the Board of Elders or by a quorum of the members of Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 8 - QUORUM

 

A majority of the Elders currently serving shall constitute a quorum. Whenever the matter to be considered concerns buying or selling real estate, a quorum shall consist of not less than two-thirds of the members of the Board of Elders. Whenever the matter to be considered concerns calling or dismissing a Pastor, a quorum shall consist of not less than two-thirds of the members of the Board of Elders, excluding said Pastor.

 

SECTION 9 - ACTION WITHOUT MEETING

 

Any action required or permitted to be taken by the Board of Elders may be taken without a meeting if all members of the Board of Elders shall individually or collectively consent verbally or in written form to such action. Such consent or consents shall have the same effect as a unanimous vote of the Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 10 - DECISIONS OF THE BOARD OF ELDERS

 

Decisions shall be reached after prayerful consideration by unanimous vote in a spirit of humility, with each Elder regarding one another before himself.

 

Notwithstanding, a Pastor/Teacher shall not participate in any discussions or votes of the Board of Elders with regard to said Pastor/Teacher’s salary, compensation or status of employment.

 

SECTION 11 - FEES AND COMPENSATION

 

Elders (as such) shall not receive any stated or fixed salary for their services; however, nothing herein contained shall be construed to preclude any Elders from serving Plainfield Bible Church in any other capacity and receiving compensation therefor.

 

Any person receiving compensation directly or indirectly from Plainfield Bible Church shall not be in a position to determine the nature of amount of said compensation.

 

                                    ARTICLE VI - DEACONS 

SECTION 1 - SELECTION AND TERM OF OFFICE

 

The nomination and selection of Deacons shall be done in the same manner as for Elders as set forth in Article V, Section 3.

 

SECTION 2 - QUALIFICATIONS

 

The Deacons shall consist of members possessing the qualifications described in I Timothy 3:8-13. A Deacon shall be a man of dignity, not double-minded, not double-tongued, not addicted to wine, not fond of sordid gain, holding to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience, first tested and found beyond reproach.

 

SECTION 3 - DUTIES

 

The Deacons shall be the servers of the church body by carrying out the directives of the Elders in the general care and assistance to the flock. They shall assist the Elders in the shepherding of the saints, assist the Pastor at the communion and baptismal services, be responsible for the care and upkeep of all church properties, and perform other duties as assigned by the Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 4 - MEETINGS

 

The Deacons shall meet without call or notice on the first Tuesday of each month, unless otherwise modified by their Chairman. Regular meetings shall be open to church members. The Chairman of the Deacons shall be appointed annually by the Board of Elders.

 

                        ARTICLE VII - THE PASTOR/TEACHER

 SECTION 1 - ELECTION

 

The Pastor/Teacher(s) shall be selected by the Board of Elders and confirmed by the members of the church at its annual meeting or at a special business meeting, and such confirmation shall be a three-fourths (3/4) majority of all votes cast. Upon selection and confirmation, a Pastor/Teacher shall be considered an Elder and possess the same powers and authority as any other elder, except as otherwise provided in this constitution. He shall remain in office for an indefinite period of time subject to the following reservations. The Elders reserve the right to dismiss the Pastor/Teacher upon giving him one month's written notice of its intention to dismiss. The Pastor/Teacher must give one month's notice if he intends to resign. The time limit of a Pastor/Teacher's dismissal is subject to a lesser time at the discretion of the Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 2 - DUTIES

 

The Pastor/Teacher shall be an ex-officio member of all councils and committees and he shall be responsible to the Board of Elders. The Pastor/Teacher shall arrange for and conduct all public and regular services of the church and shall be responsible for general oversight of the spiritual welfare of the church, with his primary focus upon prayer and the study and ministry of the Word for the equipping of the saints for the work of the ministry to the building up of the church (Ephesians 4:11-13).

 

SECTION 3 - QUALIFICATIONS

 

The Pastor/Teacher must meet the qualifications of an Elder as set forth in Article V, Section 4.

 

                          ARTICLE VIII - OTHER MINISTRIES 

SECTION 1 - CHURCH SECRETARY

 

The church secretary shall keep a book of minutes containing the record of the annual meeting of the church members and any other meetings designated by the Board of Elders and involving the church body. He or she shall also maintain a current record of membership, baptisms and dedications. The church secretary shall serve for a term of one (1) year and shall be appointed at the annual meeting by the Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 2 - CHURCH TREASURER

 

The Treasurer shall be responsible to deposit all monies and other valuables received by the church in the name and to the credit of the church. Deposits shall be made with such depositories, and into such types of accounts, as approved by the Board of Elders. The Treasurer shall be responsible to expend monies as necessary to satisfy the properly approved financial obligations of the church.

 

The Treasurer shall be responsible to keep and maintain an adequate and correct accounting of all business transactions of the church. The books of account shall at all reasonable times be open to inspection by any Elder or person designated by the Board of Elders. The books of account shall be audited annually by persons approved by the Board of Elders and a written report summarizing the results shall be submitted to

The Treasurer shall be responsible to provide financial reports at each regular meeting of the Board of Elders and at the annual meeting of the members.            

The Treasurer by virtue of his office, shall serve as a non-voting, ex-officio member of the Board of Elders. Nothing should preclude the Treasurer from also being nominated for the position of Elder, which if approved, would grant him the same powers and authority as any other Elder.

           

SECTION 3 - DIRECTOR OF CHURCH MUSIC

 

The Director of Church Music will work under the guidance and supervision of the Board of Elders in the directing, leading and teaching of music and its ministry at Plainfield Bible Church. He will be responsible for selecting and coordinating the piano and organ ministries; providing leadership as the Choir director; directing the church orchestra (if any). He will oversee the music for regular worship services, Sunday School, special services and visiting groups.

 

The Director of Church Music by virtue of his office, shall serve as a non-voting, ex-officio member of the Board of Elders. Nothing should preclude the Director of Church Music from also being nominated for the position of Elder, which if approved, would grant him the same powers and authority as any other Elder.

 

SECTION 4 - HEAD USHER

 

The Head Usher will work under the guidance and supervision of the Elder Board to greet, assist and direct people before, during and following services at Plainfield Bible Church. He shall be responsible for the overall organization and duties of ushers. He shall be responsible for the safety and security of all church property during the services. 

The Head Usher must meet the qualification of a Deacon as set forth in Article VI, Section 2. He shall serve for a term of one (1) year and shall be appointed at the annual meeting by the Board of Elders.

 

SECTION 5 - USHERS

 

They shall be accountable to and assist the Head Usher in all duties so designated by the Head Usher.

 

                           ARTICLE IX - OTHER COMMITTEES

 

To promote the efficient handling of oversight matters, and the work in general of the Plainfield Bible Church, the Elders may appoint committees from within the membership of the Elders, the Church staff, or from the membership of the Church at large. The committees shall perform tasks solely in accordance with the duties and powers specifically delegated to them by the Board. These committees shall consist, in part, of the following: Evangelism (Outreach); Service; Christian Education (which shall be responsible for the overall direction and supervision of the Sunday School, Wednesday night activities, and special holiday programs); Youth (which shall be responsible for training the young people to do the work of ministry); Grounds and Maintenance; Finance; and Missions. Further, the Board may from time to time, organize a building committee to develop new building projects for the Church. Each committee shall work under the guidance and supervision of its chairman, who shall be appointed by the Elders, for a one (1) year term. The Church Treasurer shall also be the chairman of the Finance Committee.

 

All other organizations, within the Church or identified with the Church in any manner, such as ladies groups, men’s breakfast groups, Bible studies, sports activities, and all other similar groups of any type, are subject to this Constitution and the Board.

 

ARTICLE X - MEETINGS

 

All meetings concerning the membership of Plainfield Bible Church, apart from the annual meeting of the church members, shall be called at the discretion of the Elders who will act ex-officio at all said meetings. All such meetings shall be announced no less than two (2) weeks prior to such meetings.

 

Any business of any nature that is not covered by this Constitution shall be subject to Robert's Rules of Order.

 

ARTICLE XI - LICENSING AND ORDINATION

 

The license, as recognized by the State, is issued by the Board of Elders and is given in recognition of a man's call to that ministry. Its aim is to allow a man to perform all of the ecclesiastical duties and functions of the church and indicates that he meets the qualifications of being a “clergyman” in the eyes of the State.

 

Ordination refers to the mutual recognition by the Board of Elders of a man's call to the ministry, preparation as a shepherd and qualification to serve. Ordination shall be conferred for life, so long as the man continues to manifest the qualifications of the office.

 

ARTICLE XII - DISSOLUTION 

Upon dissolution of this Corporation, the Board of Elders shall cause the assets herein to be distributed to another corporation with purposes similar to that identified in Article II of these bylaws.

 

ARTICLE XIII - CHURCH COUNSELING

 

The Church Pastor, the Elders, Deacons, Church Staff, Committee Chairman, and other members of the Church, may from time to time engage in counseling of various types with members of the Church. The counselors and the recipients of this counseling all acknowledge that the counseling shall be based only on Biblical principles, and is not secular in nature or based in any way on psychological or medical concepts. Further, the Church members and recipients of said counseling agree, in exchange for the assistance provided and as a term of their membership, to release and hold harmless the counselors, the Church, and all of its agents and assigns, from any and all injuries, damages, actions, suits, or demands, of any type whatsoever, allegedly arising from or occurring as a result of said counseling.

 

ARTICLE XIV- MARRIAGE

 

We believe that marriage was ordained by God at creation as the sacred union of one man and one woman. We also believe that marriage is a representation of Christ’s relationship to His church (Genesis 1:26-28; 2:22-24; Matthew 19:1-6; Ephesians 5:22-33).

 

We believe that sexual intimacy is only to be expressed between one man and one woman within the covenant of marriage. Therefore, we believe that any other sexual relationship is sinful and a perversion of God’s gift of sex (Matthew 19:3-6; Romans 1:18-27; I Corinthians 6:9-10, 18; I Timothy 1:8-10; Hebrews 13:4).

 

We believe that God hates divorce and that the only permissible grounds for divorce are sexual sin or desertion by an unbeliever. We also believe that remarriage is permitted for the faithful partner when the divorce was on biblical grounds. (Malachi 2:14-16; Matthew 5:31-32; 19:3-9; Romans 7:1-3; I Corinthians 7:12-15, 39).

 

ARTICLE XV- HUMAN LIFE

  

We believe that all of human life is sacred and worthy of protection from the moment of conception until the moment of termination as defined by God (Job 1:21; 10:8-12; 30:23; 31:13-15; Psalm 127:128; 139:13-16; Jeremiah 1:4-5;Galatians 1:15-16).

 

ARTICLE XVI - AMENDMENTS

  

These bylaws may be amended and new and additional bylaws may be made from time to time by the Board of Elders in the exercise of the power granted to said Board of Elders in these bylaws.

 

All proposed amendments and additions, or any proposal to repeal or abolish any bylaw must first be unanimously approved by the Board of Elders. Said proposed change(s) in these bylaws must then be posted and announced for three consecutive weeks prior to final approval and enactment by the Board of Elders. Said proposed change(s) must be posted in a conspicuous location near the worship auditorium, and the public announcement must be read at two morning worship services. If there is more than one morning worship service, the public announcement must be read at each service.

 

Whenever an amendment or new bylaws is adopted, it shall be copied in the book of minutes with the original bylaws, in the appropriate place. If any bylaw is repealed, the fact of repeal with the date of the meeting at which the repeal was enacted or written assent as filed shall be stated in said book.

 

           

 

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