Helping People Become Faithful Followers of Jesus Christ

Church Constitution

CONSTITUTION
and
BY-LAWS
Harvest Bible Church (HBC)
Elizabeth, CO

ARTICLE I – NAME

The name of this church will be Harvest Bible Church of Elizabeth; and it will be incorporated in Elbert County, State of Colorado.

ARTICLE II – VISION & MISSION

VISION

Helping people become faithful followers of Jesus Christ

MISSION

Lives focused on the hope of the Gospel of Jesus Christ
• Passionately pursuing God through prayer and His word
• Intentionally growing in obedience to Christ and His word
• Joyfully serving the growing church of Jesus Christ locally and globally through the power of the Holy Spirit

ARTICLE III – STATEMENT OF FAITH

Section I – Essential Doctrines
I. The Word of God
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, fully inspired and without error in the original manuscripts, written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and that it has supreme authority in all matters of faith and conduct.

II. The Trinity
We believe that there is one living and true God, eternally existing in three persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit); that these are equal in every divine perfection, and that they execute distinct but harmonious offices in the work of creation, providence, and redemption.

III. God the Father
We believe in God, the Father, an infinite, personal spirit, perfect in holiness, wisdom, power, and love. We believe that He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ.

IV. Jesus Christ
We believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit. We believe in His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, and teachings. We believe in His substitutionary atoning death, bodily resurrection, ascension into heaven, perpetual intercession for His people, and personal, visible return to earth.

V. The Holy Spirit
We believe in the Holy Spirit who came forth from the Father and the Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment, and to regenerate, sanctify, and empower all who believe in Jesus Christ. We believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer in Christ, and that He is an abiding helper, teacher, and guide.

VI. Salvation
We believe that salvation is by Grace alone, through Faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. We believe that all men are sinners by nature and by choice and are, therefore, under condemnation. We believe that those who are regenerated by the Holy Spirit repent of their sin, and believe and trust in Jesus Christ as Savior. The security of the believer is assured by both the Words and Works of Jesus Christ alone.

VII. The Church
We believe in the universal church, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the Head and all regenerated persons are members. We believe in the local church, consisting of a company of believers in Jesus Christ, baptized on a credible profession of faith, and associated for worship, work, and fellowship. We believe that God has laid upon the members of the local church the primary task of giving the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost world.

VIII. Christian Conduct
We believe that a Christian should live for the glory of God and the well-being of his fellowmen; that his conduct should be blameless before the world; that he should be a faithful steward of his possessions, and that he should seek to realize for himself and others the full stature of maturity in Christ.

IX. The Ordinances
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has committed two ordinances to be observed by the local church: baptism and the Lord’s Supper.

X. The Last Things
We believe in the personal and visible return of the Lord Jesus Christ to the earth and the establishment of His Kingdom. We believe in the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, the eternal felicity of the righteous, and the endless suffering of the wicked.

Section II – Distinguishing of Beliefs
In Essentials Unity, In Non-Essentials Liberty, In All Things Charity – Augustine

Doctrine may be divided into three groups:

1.That which is essential for salvation

2.That which is essential for leadership

3. That on which we can agree to disagree

A) Doctrine essential for salvation

Salvation is a free gift offered to man by God through the finished work of Jesus Christ. In order to be saved, a person must repent of his/her sin and trust in Jesus Christ alone for salvation. (Ephesians 2:8-9; John 1:12; John 3:16).

B) Doctrine essential for leadership

This involves those doctrines which must be agreed upon by those who serve as Elders, Deacons, small-group leaders, teachers, or in other positions of leadership. An individual may disagree and still be considered a Christian, but could not teach or hold a leadership position in the church. The doctrines essential for leadership and teaching in HBC are set forth in Article III, Section I.

C) Doctrine on which we can agree to disagree

This involves those doctrines which are more obscure, not as clear as other doctrines set forth in the Scriptures, and not foundational to the Christian faith. Over such matters Christians may agree to disagree. They may still be members of the church and serve in leadership capacities.

When such doctrines are taught, it should be explained that they are not essential for the salvation or leadership. We may state the case for our position, but we should point out that, in many cases, sincere and intelligent Christians hold different positions.

Article IV – MEMBERSHIP

Section I – Qualifications for Membership of HBC
Any person who has professed faith in Jesus Christ alone as personal Savior and has experienced baptism will be eligible for membership.

Section II – Admission of Membership
Application for membership will be by confession of faith and taking the following steps:

• Attend HBC New Member Class.
• Understand and agree with HBC Statement of Faith.
• Sign and commit to HBC Membership Accord

The HBC Elders reserve the exclusive right to determine who shall be members of this church and the conditions of such membership.

D) Disciplinary Action

It is the desire and commitment of HBC to come to the assistance of any troubled member. This commitment is motivated by love and concern for the redemption and restoration of any straying or suffering brother or sister in Christ.

If there should be a situation or condition that would cause a member to become a liability to the general welfare or unity of this body or bring reproach to the name of Christ, the Elders will, in a spirit of Christian love (and guided by principles found in Matthew 18:15-17), seek to restore the erring person

Discipline will be administered with the ultimate goals of restoring a person to a right relationship with Jesus Christ and fellowship with the body. If necessary, the Elders may remove a member from fellowship as a last step. Church members recognize they are under the authority of the Elders whose responsibility to God is to watch over and care for the flock where He has placed them. A person may be restored to membership upon evidence of repentance and reformation. (Hebrews 13:17)

Section V – Voting
A) Any resident member in good standing, eighteen (18) years of age or older is eligible to vote.

B) A simple majority vote will be used except as provided in the constitution or by-laws.

C) A secret ballot will be used if the Council of Elders deems it to be the best interest of the church.

D) Eligible members will vote on the church budget, changes to the constitution, the hiring and dismissal of the senior pastor; and any other matters the Elders deem should come before the congregation.

ARTICLE V – CHURCH LEADERSHIP

Section I – Authority
Jesus Christ and his Word have ultimate authority over his church, as delineated in the Scriptures Christ delegates responsibility to Elders and Deacons to carry out the oversight of his Body. Members of this congregation shall approve biblically-qualified leadership to carry out Christ’s purposes. Colossians 1:18, Ephesians 5:23, Titus 1:5, Acts 6:1-7

Section II – Elders
We believe the Lord Jesus Christ has entrusted to the leadership of His Church the task of shepherding His body. Two terms are used in reference to this leadership are: elder (presbuteros) and overseer (episkopos).

The term “Elder” implies maturity of spiritual experience and refers to the position or office of a ruler.

I Timothy 5:17 “Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching.”

The term “overseer” refers to the function of shepherding the people.

Acts 20:28 “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God, which He purchased with His own blood.”

A) Qualifications
The Elders of this church shall be selected members of this church and the pastoral staff who are mature godly men that fully support the Bible, the Statement of Faith, Vision & Mission, Unity Accord, and policies of this church. They must also manifest the qualifications stipulated by the Scriptures: I Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9.

B) Selection (Excluding Pastoral Staff)
1. It is the Holy Spirit who must select men for leadership. Only He knows the hearts and motives of men. His choices however, must be expressed through human agency.

2. Selection will be made on the basis of spiritual qualifications and commitment to this church.

3. Prior to the Annual Business Meeting of the congregation, and at other times when new or additional Elders are needed, the Council of Elders will review and seek biblically qualified men to serve as qualified Elders. The Council of Elders may ask the members of the congregation for suggestions of men who, in their estimation, meet the qualifications of an Elder. The Council of Elders will select prospective Elders. The prospective Elder’s names will be brought before the congregation for a period of two weeks. If there are no significant reasons why these men should not serve as Elders, they will then be appointed as Elders. The Council of Elders shall consist of no more than seven and no fewer than five members.

C) Terms of Service – Council of Elders (Excluding Sr. Pastor)
Elders will serve three-year terms on the Council of Elders. An Elder may serve two consecutive terms if approved by the Council of Elders. Elders whose terms are completed will rotate off the Council of Elders. They will, however, be eligible to serve again if selected and after a minimum of 1 year off of the Council of Elders.

D) Function (Mark 10:42-45, Acts 6:2-4, 1 Peter 5:1-9; 1 Timothy 5:17, Hebrews 13:17; Acts 20:28, 2 Timothy 1:13-14)

1. The Elders will be responsible for the leadership, and spiritual oversight of the church.

2. The Elders will be responsible for the oversight of all teaching in order to preserve and proclaim Biblical truth.

3. The Elders will coordinate the work of the church and will function in an executive capacity, administering church business and delegating responsibility.

4. The Elders shall, when necessary, apply church discipline according to the Scriptures. (Matt 18)

5. The Elders shall develop Vision and Mission and maintain active plans so that short and long-term goals for the church can be defined and met.

6. The Elders shall supervise and support the Ministries of the church.

7. The Elders shall set appropriate remuneration for all staff positions.

E) Evaluation, Discipline, Accountability
1. The Elders are directly accountable to the Lord of the Church, Jesus Christ, for all their actions and decisions (Hebrews 13:17). They are also accountable to each other and the congregation. The Elders shall evaluate themselves and each other. It shall be a self-disciplining Council according to Matthew 18:15-20; II Thessalonians 3:14-15; I Timothy 5:19-20.

2. Any Elder who does not fulfill the duties and responsibilities of his office shall be asked to resign by the Council of Elders.

F) Decision-Making Process
The Elders shall approach decisions with biblical direction and prayerful dependence upon the Holy Spirit. They shall earnestly seek to reach decisions by consensus and without coercion. As a last resort, the Elders shall take a vote to reach a decision.

G) Quorum for the Elders
A quorum for the Elders shall consist of a simple majority of the Council of Elders.

H) Organization
The Elders shall be self-organizing. That is, the various functions and areas of responsibility of the Elders shall be delegated among themselves.

Section III – Deacons
The second office set forth in Scripture is the office of Deacon. Our English word “Deacon” in the New Testament comes from the Greek word “diakonos,” which means: a servant of someone, a helper, one who renders service or ministers to the needs of another. (Acts 6:1-4, 1 Tim 3:8-13.)

A) Qualification
The Deacons shall be selected members of this church who are godly men that fully support the Bible, Statement of Faith, Vision & Mission, Unity Accord and policies of this church. They must also manifest the qualifications stipulated by the Scriptures.

B) Selection
As ministry needs in the community or congregation arise or when new or additional Deacons are needed, the Elders will respond by either (1) presenting to the congregation those men who are currently involved in ministry and/or are demonstrating Christian character and skills necessary to meet the need, or (2) asking the members of the congregation for suggestions of men who, in their estimation, would be qualified to serve and desirous of serving in the capacity of Deacon. From that list, the Elders will select prospective Deacons. The names of the prospective Deacons will be brought before the congregation for a period of two weeks. If there are no significant reasons why these men should not serve as Deacons, they will then be appointed.

C) Function
The role or function of a Deacon is open-ended. They exist to serve the church, and will be appointed as particular needs arise in the church. The needs will vary from time to time, and according to each stage of the church’s life. The Deacons will be directly responsible to the Elders.

D) Term of Service
Deacons will serve until the need is met or for a period of three years, whichever comes first. A Deacon may serve two consecutive terms if approved by the Elders. Those whose terms are completed will rotate off the Deacon Team. They will, however, be eligible to serve again if selected and after a minimum of 1 year off the active Deacon Team.

ARTICLE VI – OFFICERS

Section I – Pastoral Staff
A) Senior Pastor
B) Associate Pastors

Section II – Elders

Section III – Moderator
Since it is essential for the Moderator to have full knowledge of the direction and ministry of the church, the Moderator will be a member of the Council of Elders, but not the pastor.

Section IV – The Elder Appointed Officers of the Church
A) Treasurer
B) Secretary

Section V – Terms of Office
A) The Senior Pastor will serve for an indefinite period.

B) Associate Pastors will serve for an indefinite period.

C) The Moderator, Treasurer, and Secretary will serve three-year terms. They will be eligible to serve again if selected.

D) Terms of office will normally end at 12:59 PM on the day of the scheduled Annual Church Meeting.

Section VI – Qualifications
A) To hold one of the above offices, one must be a member in good standing.

B) Other than Pastors, a candidate for an office must have been a member of HBC of Elizabeth for a period of one year before being selected to a church office.

C) Officers must meet spiritual qualifications for godly leadership as set forth in the Scriptures.

ARTICLE VII – FISCAL YEAR

The fiscal year of the church will be from January 1 to December 31.

ARTICLE VIII – MEETINGS

Section I – Annual Meeting
The Annual Meeting of Harvest Bible Church of Elizabeth will be held in January or any date thereafter prior to the second Tuesday of February. Necessary business will be conducted and the budget for the coming fiscal year will be presented to the church.

Section II – Special Business Meeting
The Moderator will call a special business meeting at the request of the Elders. An announcement stating its purpose will be made from the pulpit at the morning worship service two (2) Sundays in succession and/or by letter at least ten (10) days prior to the meeting. No action other than that relating to the specified matters will be transacted at such meeting.

ARTICLE IX – SENIOR PASTORAL RELATIONS

Section I – Establishing of Senior Pastoral Relations
Step 1: A Pastor Search Committee consisting of at least two Elders, two Deacons, and two members of the congregation will be created. The Council of Elders will select two Elders to serve. The Deacon Team will select two Deacons to serve. The congregation will select from its membership at least two men or women whose lives exhibit spiritual maturity and wisdom to serve.

Step 2: The Pastor Search Committee will interview and recommend a candidate to the Elders.

Step 3: If the Elders unanimously agree on the candidate, the Pastor Search Committee and the Elders will present the candidate to the church with a recommendation to call him as pastor. A three-fourths (3/4) majority in favor of the candidate is required before a call can be extended, and no other candidate will be presented unless the called candidate declines the call.

Step 4: The called candidate will be contacted by the Pastor Search Committee. The candidate’s written acceptance will establish the pastoral relationship as of the date agreed upon between the Elders and the candidate.

Section II – Dissolution of Senior Pastoral Relationships
A) Senior Pastor’s Resignation
If the Senior Pastor resigns, the Elders will accept his resignation. The date of the dissolution of the pastoral relationship will be decided between the Senior Pastor and the Elders, but in no case will the relationship be obligatory to either party beyond ninety (90) days after the date of resignation.

B) Request of Church
A three quarters majority of those members attending a duly-called business meeting is required for the membership to request the resignation of the Senior Pastor. The effective date will be the same as stated in Section II, A, of this Article.

ARTICLE X – ASSOCIATE PASTORAL RELATIONS

A) The Senior Pastor, in consultation with the Elders, will have authority to hire and dismiss Pastoral Staff.

B) If an unresolvable conflict arises, it is the responsibility of the staff person to submit to leadership or to resign and leave quietly.

ARTICLE XI – AFFILIATION

Harvest Bible Church of Elizabeth is not affiliated with any denomination or conference at this time.

ARTICLE XII – ACQUISITION AND DISPOSITION OF PROPERTY

Section I – Real Estate
A) Buying, selling, and transferring real estate; capital leases of more than three (3) years; incurring new encumbrances in an amount in excess of ten percent (10%) of the church budget; or increasing existing encumbrances by refinancing will require the authorization of a two-thirds (2/3) majority of members present at a business meeting.

B) The Elders shall approve or authorize capital leases of three (3) years or less; new encumbrances in an amount less than ten percent (10%) of the budget; or refinancing of existing debt inclusive of transaction costs. In no case will cumulative encumbrances exclusively approved or authorized by the Elders exceed ten percent (10%) of current market value of church’s real estate assets.

Section II – Organic Division
In the case of organic division of the church membership, the church property will belong to those members who abide by this constitution.

Section III – Dissolution and Disposition of Properties
Should conditions prevail that the work of Harvest Bible Church of Elizabeth cannot continue, title to the assets shall be transferred to a like-minded non-profit Christian organization provided that:

A) No part of the net earnings will be distributed or inure to the benefit of any individual.
B) The assets will be distributed to one or more organizations having like tax exempt status and purpose in compliance with the Internal Revenue Code, Section 501 (c)(3)

ARTICLE XIII – AMENDMENTS

Proposed amendments to this constitution must be presented to and approved by the Elders before being presented to the members for their approval. Church members are to be notified of the proposed constitutional changes by announcements from the pulpit at the morning worship service two (2) Sundays in succession and/or by letter informing members of the proposed constitutional changes at least ten (10) days prior to the business meeting. Such notice must state the time and date of the meeting and the proposed amendment(s). The vote to amend requires a two-thirds (2/3) majority.

BY-LAWS

ARTICLE I – QUORUM

Thirty percent (30%) of the eligible voting membership will constitute a quorum at all business meetings.

ARTICLE II – CHURCH OFFICIALS

Section I – The Pastoral Staff
A) Senior Pastor

The Senior Pastor will oversee all church ministries and activities, and will serve as an overseeing shepherd for the entire church family. He will be responsible for the satisfactory performance of duties by Associate Pastors and church staff. The Senior Pastor will be a member of the Council of Elders and an ex-officio member of all ministry teams. He will preach the Gospel and, under guidance of the Holy Spirit and God’s Word, have freedom of the pulpit. He will direct the administration of the church ordinances, watch over membership and spiritual interests of the church, and cooperate in organizing and developing her strengths for the best possible service. He will meet the scriptural qualifications of I Timothy 3:2-7. (The Senior Pastor has a relationship of accountability to the Elders).

B) Associate Pastors
The church may employ full or part-time pastoral staff as needed. Associate Pastors will meet the scriptural qualifications of 1 Timothy 3:2-7, and be responsible to the Senior Pastor or a designated supervisor for overall guidance.

C) Membership
A pastoral staff member and spouse become members of HBC immediately upon acceptance of the call or beginning of employment, whichever comes first.

Section II – Elders
The Elders consisting of not less than five nor more than seven men will serve as the Council of Elders of the corporation for Harvest Bible Church of Elizabeth. The Elders will be responsible for the governing and spiritual oversight of the church. They will coordinate the work of the church and will function in an executive capacity, administering church business and delegating responsibility.

Section III – Other Officers

A) Moderator
The Moderator will prepare the agenda and preside at all church business meetings. The Moderator will be an ex-officio member of all ministry teams. The Elders will select a Vice-Moderator, if necessary, to preside in the absence of or at the request of the Moderator.

B) Treasurer
The Treasurer shall:

• Oversee the keeping of an accurate record of moneys deposited and disbursed.

2. Be the principal officer in charge of the financial matters of the Corporation.

3. Keep or cause to be kept appropriate, complete, and accurate books or records of account of all financial transactions of the Corporation.

4. Maintain liaison with the proper officers of any bank holding or investing funds of the Corporation and make periodic reports concerning the same to the Elders.

5. Disburse or cause to be disbursed the funds of the Corporation by payment in cash or by checks drawn upon the authorized depositories of the Corporation, and cause to be taken and preserved proper vouchers for such disbursements.

6. Regularly render to the Elders, and be prepared to answer to the members at any annual meeting, a report as to the financial position and operation of the Corporation; and render, when and as required, an account of all his or her transactions as treasurer.

7. Have all powers and perform all duties incident to the office of Treasurer, and such other powers and duties as may be prescribed, from time to time, by the Elders.

8. Ensure that the church and its property is properly insured.

9. Be responsible for establishing proper procedures for maintaining an up-to-date inventory of church property and assets.

11. Assist in financial planning, including the annual formulation of the church budget.

The Treasurer’s books shall be audited annually be person(s) approved by the Elders. The books of the Treasurer may be audited at such other times, at the discretion of the Elders, by a Certified Public Accountant or by a qualified committee appointed by the Elders. If requested by the Elders, the Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer(s), if any, shall each furnish bond with sufficient sureties satisfactory to the Elders and in such amounts as the Elders may prescribe; however, the premiums for such bond shall be paid from Corporation funds.

C) Secretary
The Secretary will take accurate minutes of both the regular meetings (including the Annual Meeting) and the specially called meetings of this church.

ARTICLE III – TEACHING AND LEADERSHIP

Section I – Qualifications
In order to ensure the purity of the gospel and the integrity of the ministries of HBC, those who serve as teachers, ministry-team leaders, or in other strategic places of leadership must:

1) Be members in good standing.

2) Be in full support of the Bible, Statement of Faith, Vision & Mission, Unity Accord, and policies of Harvest Bible Church.

3) Be willing to be in ongoing submission to the leadership of the Elders.

Section II – Appointment Process
Application for a teaching and/or care group leadership position will be by the following steps:

Step 1: Be interviewed and approved by a member of the pastoral staff and/or at least one Elder.

Step 2: Ministry teams and/or ministry positions will be appointed as their need arises by the Elders.

ARTICLE IV – ORGANIZATIONS

No ministry or organization will be formed or considered to be under the auspices of Harvest Bible Church until it is approved by the Elders. The various ministries and organizations must periodically confer with a designated member of the Pastoral Staff and/or Elders regarding their plans and objectives.

Harvest Bible Church will not take responsibility for debts or financial obligations incurred by a ministry or organization unless such expenditures have been previously budgeted or are covered by the treasury of the organization or ministry. Unbudgeted expenditures must have duly authorized preapproval before the church will assume responsibility for them.

ARTICLE V – AMENDMENTS

Proposed amendments to these By-Laws must be presented to and approved by the Elders before being presented to the members for their approval. Church members are to be notified of the proposed changes to the by-laws by announcements from the pulpit at the morning worship service two (2) Sundays in succession and/or by letter informing members of the proposed changes at least ten (10) days prior to the business meeting. Such notice must state the time and date of the meeting and the proposed amendment(s). The vote to amend requires a two-thirds (2/3) majority.

APPENDIX

HBC STATEMENT OF FAITH

These things we believe:

I. The Word of God
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, fully inspired and without error in the original manuscripts, written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and it has supreme authority in all matters of faith and conduct.

II. The Trinity
We believe that there is one living and true God, eternally existing in three persons; that these are equal in every divine perfection, and that they execute distinct but harmonious office in the work of creation, providence, and redemption.

III. God the Father
We believe in God, the Father, an infinite, personal spirit, perfect in holiness, wisdom, power, and love. We believe that He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ.

IV. Jesus Christ
We believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit. We believe in His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles and teachings. We believe in His substitutionary atoning death, bodily resurrection, ascension into Heaven, perpetual intercession for His people and personal, visible return to earth.

V. The Holy Spirit
We believe in the Holy Spirit who came forth from the Father and the Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness and judgment, and to regenerate, sanctify, and empower all who believe in Jesus Christ. We believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer in Christ, and that He is an abiding helper, teacher, and guide.

VI. Salvation
We believe that salvation is by Grace alone, through Faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. We believe that all men are sinners by nature and by choice and are, therefore, under condemnation. We believe that those who are regenerated by the Holy Spirit repent of their sin, and believe and trust in Jesus Christ as Savior. The security of the believer is assured by both the words and works of Jesus Christ alone.

VII. The Church
We believe in the universal church, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the Head and all regenerated persons are members. We believe in the local church, consisting of a company of believers in Jesus Christ, baptized on a credible profession of faith, and associated for worship, work, and fellowship. We believe that God has laid upon the members of the local church the primary task of giving the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost world.

VIII. Christian Conduct
We believe that a Christian should live for the glory of God and the well-being of his fellowmen; that his conduct should be blameless before the world; that he should be a faithful steward of his possessions, and that he should seek to realize for himself and others the full stature of maturity in Christ. Christian behavior or conduct is fundamental to those who have accepted, by faith, Jesus Christ as their Savior and thus are indwelt with His Holy Spirit (Romans 8:9), “You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” Christians are God’s” workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10). And these last four words “to do good works” epitomize the behavior that glorifies God and makes Christ real to others. Christians are called to live lives that are “holy and pleasing to God” (Romans 12:1), and exemplary Christian behavior that allows us to fully commit ourselves to serving the Lord is made possible as we are empowered by the Holy Spirit who enables us to do the Father’s will (Romans 8:9). Indeed, “the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him” (2 Chronicles 16:9).

1. Christians are a chosen people, belonging to God so that we may declare His praises (1 Peter 2:9). To “declare His praises,” then, it is essential that we spend time in His Word not just so we can learn how to behave in Christian fashion, but also so we can battle against the schemes of Satan.

2. The “actions” that glorify our Father in heaven are those that bear much fruit (John 15:8). This is, in fact, how we show we are His disciples. Indeed, the fruit of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23)—should be the hallmark of Christian behavior, especially love

3. Christian behavior includes heeding Jesus’ call for us to be His witnesses to “the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). We are to share the gospel, which Paul defined as the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).

4. Paul urged the Romans to “offer your bodies as living sacrifices” (Romans 12:2). This, ultimately, is the essence of true Christian behavior – surrendering our hearts and yielding our bodies to Christ so He might continue God’s work through us.

IX. The Ordinances
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has committed two ordinances to the local church: baptism and the Lord’s Supper.
1) We believe that baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament ordained by Jesus Christ, to be unto the party baptized a sign of fellowship with Him in His death and resurrection; of his being engrafted into Him, of remission of sins, and of giving up into God, through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life.
Those who do actually profess repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ are the only proper subjects of this ordinance.
The outward element to be used in this ordinance is water, wherein the party is baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
We practice baptism by immersion because we feel that it most clearly represents the symbols of dying and rising with Christ and the washing of regeneration, though we accept other forms of Christian believer’s baptism in water and in the name of the triune God.

2) The supper of the Lord Jesus was instituted by Him the night He was betrayed, to be observed in His churches unto the end of the world, for the perpetual remembrance and showing forth the sacrifice of Himself in His death, confirmation of the faith of believers in all the benefits thereof, their spiritual nourishment and growth in Him their further engagement in and to all duties which they owe Him; and to be a bond a pledge of their communion with Him and each other.

We believe that these two ordinances should be observed and administered until the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.

X. The Last Things
We believe in the personal and visible return of the Lord Jesus Christ to the earth and the establishment of His Kingdom. We believe in the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, the eternal felicity of the righteous, and the endless suffering of the wicked.

HBC POLICY STATEMENT ON THE SANCTITY OF HUMAN LIFE

We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including, pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other state or condition from conception to natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life. (Psalm 139)
The phrase “sanctity of life” reflects the belief that, because people are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:26), human life has an inherently sacred attribute that should be protected and respected at all times. While God gave humanity the authority to kill and eat other forms of life (Genesis 9:3), the murdering of other human beings is expressly forbidden, with the penalty being death (Genesis 9:6).

Humanity was created in God’s image, but sin has corrupted that image. There is nothing inherently sacred in fallen man. The sanctity of human life is not due to the fact that we are such wonderful and good beings. The only reason the sanctity of life applies to humanity is the fact that God created us in His image and set us apart from all other forms of life. Although that image has indeed been marred by sin, His image is still present in humanity. We are like God, and that likeness means that human life is always to be treated with dignity and respect.

The sanctity of life means that humanity is more sacred than the rest of creation. Human life is not holy in the same sense that God is holy. Only God is holy in and of Himself. Human life is only holy in the sense of being “set apart” from all other life created by God. Many apply the sanctity of life to issues like abortion and euthanasia, and, while it definitely applies to those issues, it applies to much more. The sanctity of life should motivate us to combat all forms of evil and injustice that are perpetuated against human life. Violence, abuse, oppression, human trafficking, and many other evils are also violations of the sanctity of human life.

Beyond the sanctity of life, there is a much better argument against these things: the greatest commandments. In Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus says, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” In these commandments, we see that our actions are to be motivated by love for God and love for others. If we love God, we will value our own lives as part of God’s plan, to do His will until it comes about that His will is better served by our deaths. And we will love and care for His people (John 21:15-17). We will see to the needs of the elderly and sick. We will protect others from harm—whether from abortion, euthanasia, human trafficking, or other abuses. While the sanctity of life can be the foundation, love must be the motivation.

HBC POLICY STATEMENT ON MARRIAGE, GENDER AND SEXUALITY

We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Genesis 1:26-27.) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.

We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. (Genesis 2:18-25.) We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. (I Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4.)   We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.

The Bible consistently tells us that homosexual activity is a sin (Genesis 19:1-13; Leviticus 18:22; 20:13; Romans 1:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9). Romans 1:26-27 teaches specifically that homosexuality is a result of denying and disobeying God. When people continue in sin and unbelief, God “gives them over” to even more wicked and depraved sin in order to show them the futility and hopelessness of life apart from God. 1 Corinthians 6:9 proclaims that homosexual “offenders” will not inherit the kingdom of God.

God does not create a person with homosexual desires. The Bible tells us that people become homosexuals because of sin (Romans 1:24-27) and ultimately because of their own choice. A person may be born with a greater susceptibility to homosexuality, just as some people are born with a tendency to violence and other sins. That does not excuse the person’s choosing to sin by giving in to sinful desires. If a person is born with a greater susceptibility to anger/rage, does that make it right for him to give into those desires? Of course not! The same is true with homosexuality.

However, the Bible does not describe homosexuality as a “greater” sin than any other. All sin is offensive to God. Homosexuality is just one of the many things listed in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 that will keep a person from the kingdom of God. According to the Bible, God’s forgiveness is just as available to a homosexual as it is to an adulterer, idol worshipper, murderer, thief, etc. God also promises the strength for victory over sin, including homosexuality, to all those who will believe in Jesus Christ for their salvation (1 Corinthians 6:11; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Philippians 4:13).
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and the use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matthew 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10.)

We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Harvest Bible Church as a local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the members of Harvest Bible Church, it is imperative that all persons employed by Harvest Bible Church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agreed to and abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender and Sexuality. (Matthew 5:16; Philippians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22.)

We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confessed and forsake their sin, seeking his mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Romans 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.)

We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-30; Luke 6:31.) Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of Harvest Bible Church

HBC POLICY STATEMENT ON BAPTISM

Why Baptize?
Jesus commands it. Baptism is an ordinance established by Jesus Christ himself.
Matthew 28:19-20 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Who should be baptized?
Those who have placed their faith in Jesus Christ and who exhibit the marks of spiritual life. This is why we refer to baptism as “believer’s baptism.”
Acts 2:41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.

What is the proper method of baptism?
Immersion is the method practiced by Christ and the disciples. Immersion best reflects our union with Christ in his death, burial, and resurrection. Immersion in water (taking a bath so to speak) is a perfect symbol for the washing away of sin.
Mark 1:9-10 At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10As Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove.
Acts 8:36-39 As they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. Why shouldn’t I be baptized?” 38And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water, and Philip baptized him. 39When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing.
The standard dictionary meaning of baptism (baptizo) is “plunge, dip, immerse.” Had God wished for us to sprinkle, he would have used the Greek word rantizo. Even today the Greek Orthodox Church immerses because they recognize the meaning of their own language.

What is the meaning of baptism?
1. Baptism is a public declaration of our faith in Christ.
Acts 2:41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.

2. Baptism is a dramatic visible enactment of our spiritual union with Christ in his death, burial, and resurrection. (The Christian is a person whose past is buried and whose future is linked to Christ and the new quality of life he gives via his Holy Spirit.)
Romans 6:3-5 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection.

3. Baptism symbolizes the cleansing from sin we experience when we receive new life in Christ. (Baptism is not the means of cleansing. It is the symbol of cleansing.)
Titus 3:5-6 He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, 6whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior.

4. Baptism is the introductory ceremony into Christ’s church, his covenant people.
Act 2:41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. (To what were they added? They were added to Christ’s church. This group is referred to as Christ’s church 18 times in the book of Acts.)
I Cor 12:13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body (Christ’s Church)–whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free–and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.

Why do we not baptize our babies?
1. Under the Old Covenant all members, both regenerate and unregenerate (those who knew the Lord and those who did not), were included in the covenant people and thus received circumcision, the covenant sign.
Genesis 17:9-13 Then God said to Abraham, “As for you, you must keep my covenant, you and your descendants after you for the generations to come. 10This is my covenant with you and your descendants after you, the covenant you are to keep: Every male among you shall be circumcised. 11You are to undergo circumcision, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and you. 12For the generations to come every male among you who is eight days old must be circumcised, including those born in your household or bought with money from a foreigner–those who are not your offspring. 13Whether born in your household or bought with your money, they must be circumcised.

2. The New Covenant is a “better covenant” based on “better promises.” The New Covenant people is composed exclusively of those people who have received new life in Christ They know the Lord, have God’s law written on their hearts, and have received forgiveness of sins.
Hebrews 8:8-13 The time is coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. 9It will not be like the covenant I made with their forefathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they did not remain faithful to my covenant, and I turned away from them, declares the Lord. 10This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. 11No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. 12For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” 13By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear.
Galatians 3_26-27, 29 You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, 27for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 29If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

3. Entrance into the New Covenant is by spiritual birth, not physical birth.
John 1:12-13 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God–13children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

4. The only people the New Testament specifically identifies as being baptized, were those who placed their faith in Christ.
Acts 2:41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he preached the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.

HBC POLICY STATEMENT ON REPENTANCE

The New Testament term for repentance is from the Greek word (Montanoeo) that means to change one’s mind.
Many understand the term repentance to mean “turning from sin.” This is not the biblical definition of repentance. In the Bible, the word repent means “to change one’s mind.” The Bible also tells us that true repentance will result in a change of actions (Luke 3:8-14; Acts 3:19). Acts 26:20 declares, “I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.” The full biblical definition of repentance is a change of mind that results in a change of action.

What, then, is the connection between repentance and salvation? The Book of Acts seems to especially focus on repentance in regards to salvation (Acts 2:38; 3:19; 11:18; 17:30; 20:21; 26:20). To repent, in relation to salvation, is to change your mind in regard to Jesus Christ. In Peter’s sermon on the day of Pentecost (Acts chapter 2), he concludes with a call for the people to repent (Acts 2:38). Repent from what? Peter is calling the people who rejected Jesus (Acts 2:36) to change their minds about Him, to recognize that He is indeed “Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36). Peter is calling the people to change their minds from rejection of Christ as the Messiah to faith in Him as both Messiah and Savior.

Repentance and faith can be understood as “two sides of the same coin.” It is impossible to place your faith in Jesus Christ as the Savior without first changing your mind about who you are, who He is and what He has done. Whether it is repentance from willful rejection, or repentance from ignorance or disinterest, it is a change of mind. Biblical repentance, in relation to salvation, is changing your mind from rejection of Christ to faith in Christ to save you from your sin and God’s wrath.

It is crucially important that we understand repentance is not a work we do to earn salvation. No one can repent and come to God unless God pulls that person to Himself (John 6:44). Acts 5:31 and 11:18 indicate that repentance is something God gives it is only possible because of His grace. No one can repent unless God grants repentance. All of salvation, including repentance and faith, is a result of God drawing us, opening our eyes, and changing our hearts. God’s longsuffering leads us to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), as does His kindness (Romans 2:4).

While repentance is not a work that earns salvation, repentance unto salvation does result in works. It is impossible to truly and fully change your mind without that causing a change in action. In the Bible, repentance results in a change in behavior. That is why John the Baptist called people to “produce fruit in keeping with repentance” (Matthew 3:8). A person who has truly repented from rejection of Christ to faith in Christ will give evidence of a changed life (2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 5:19-23; James 2:14-26). Repentance, properly defined, is necessary for salvation. Biblical repentance is changing your mind about Jesus Christ and turning to God in faith for salvation (Acts 3:19). Turning from sin is not the definition of repentance, but it is one of the results of genuine, faith-based repentance towards the Lord Jesus Christ.

– Portions taken from: www.gotquestions.org

The Meaning of Metanoeo: 
The Greek Word for Repentance
From: Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, 4:976-977
Metanoeo is a combination of two words:
Noeo
• Literally, “to direct one’s mind to a subject”
• In classical Greek it meant “to perceive” or “to notice”
Meta
• In compounds means “after,” “with,” “around,” etc.
Metanoeo literally means “after directing one’s mind to a subject.” But what did it mean to the Greeks? 

Metanoeo . . .
• can first mean “to note after, later”;
• it can then mean “to change one’s mind” or “adopt another view” or “to change one’s feelings”;
• If the change of mind derives from recognition that the earlier view was foolish, improper or evil, there arises the sense “to regret,” “to feel remorse,” “to rue.”

From: Theological Lexicon of the New Testament, 2:472
Metanoeo is literally “know after.” To repent is first of all . . .
• a change of mind
• a change of feelings
• a change intentions
• a change plans
• to reflect (which implies a time later than the first knowledge)
• to reconsider a first opinion
• is a new form of thought or feeling after coming under the influence of Deception (apate), whence derive ignorance and error

What characterizes this transformation is that it is accompanied by regret, sorrow, or shame at one’s sin and rebellion against Jesus Christ.
HBC MEMBERSHIP ACCORD

The church is the family of God, vitally related and indivisibly bound to one another by spiritual birth, brothers and sisters who share in common the life of Christ, the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, and forgiveness of sins, and the hope of heaven. Our kinship calls for commitment to each other. Therefore having received Christ Jesus as my Lord and Savior, having been identified with him through believer’s baptism, and firmly embracing the historic truths of the Christian faith as expressed in the HBC Statement of Faith, I joyfully affiliate with my brothers and sisters to do the following:
1. I will protect the unity of the church
by acting in love toward other members
by refusing to gossip
by following the leaders
Romans 14:19 (all NIV) Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.
I Peter 1:22 Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart.
Ephesians 4:29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
Hebrews 13:17) Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.

2. I will share the responsibility of my church
by praying for its growth
by inviting the unchurched to attend
by warmly welcoming those who visit
I Thessalonians 1:1-2 Paul, Silas and Timothy, To the church…We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers.
Luke 14:23 Then the master told his servant, Go out to the roads and country lanes and make them come in, so that my house will be full.”
Romans 15:7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

3. I will serve the ministry of my church
by discovering my gifts and talents
by being equipped to serve
by developing a servant’s heart
I Peter 4:10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
Ephesians 4:11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.
Philippians 2:3, 4-7 Each of you should look not to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who (took on) the very nature of a servant. Each of you should look not only to your interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus; Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant,…

4. I will support the testimony of my church
by attending faithfully
by living a godly life
by giving regularly
Hebrews 10:24-25 Let us not give up meeting together…but let us encourage one another.
Philippians 1:27 Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ.
Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.
2 Cor. 9:7 Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God
loves a cheerful giver.

Signed:________________________________________________ Date_____________________________
HBC MINISTRY LEADER UNITY ACCORD

The Bible underscores the importance of “unity” and “oneness.” Unity with others is “good” and “pleasant” (Psalm 133:1) “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!” Unity is absolutely essential because the church is the “body of Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:27) “Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it”. A body cannot be in disunity or disharmony with itself. If disunity occurs, it essentially ceases to be a body and becomes a disjointed group of individuals. Jesus plan for His church is people unified in the faith.
The goal of Harvest Bible Church is to enable every individual to employ their God-given gifts and abilities to serve Christ’s church and advance his Kingdom. To advance and accomplish this goal the leadership of HBC is led by Jesus Christ to advance and protect the unity of His church. To ensure the unity of those called to, lead a ministry or teach within the fellowship of HBC, agree with the following accord and will follow the guidelines set forth in this accord. I also agree to promote the guidelines of this accord within the ministry I have been called.
The Body: As Christians, we are to see one another in the light of the cross. Fellow Christians are those for whom Christ died a horrible and painful death so that He might exchange His righteous perfection for their sin (2 Corinthians 5:21). How can we not extend to them the love, compassion, and grace of our heavenly Father? How can we demean, criticize, and defame those covered with the precious blood of Christ? Were we not slaves to sin when He called us, hopelessly lost, dead in our own transgressions and sins (Ephesians 2:1)? But we are now slaves of Christ, slaves to righteousness, and as slaves of the Master, the task before us is not to quarrel and demand our needs be met but to reflect His grace and love to those who are also His by His mercy. A church full of such people enjoying their “common salvation” will be a true, biblical church unified in, and earnestly contending for, the “faith once delivered to the saints” (Jude 1:3).

Faithfulness, to be faithful is to be reliable, steadfast and unwavering, and the Bible speaks of this type of faithfulness in four ways: as an attribute of God; as a positive characteristic of some men; as a characteristic that many men lack; and as a gift of the Holy Spirit. Faithful is also used in the sense of “believing,” as in the case of the Christians in Ephesus and Colossae (Ephesians 1:1; Colossians 1:2).
Scripture speaks often of God’s faithfulness. Over and over we learn that when God says He will do something, He does it (even when it seems impossible). When He says something will happen, it happens. This is true for the past, the present and the future. If this were not the case—if God were unfaithful even once—He would not be God, and we could not rely on any of His promises. But as it is, “Not one word has failed of all the good promises he gave” (1 Kings 8:56). God is eternally reliable, steadfast, and unwavering because faithfulness is one of His inherent attributes. God does not have to work at being faithful; He is faithful. Faithfulness is an essential part of who He is (Psalm 89:8; Hebrews 13:8). In His faithfulness, God protects us from evil (2 Thessalonians 3:3), sets limits on our temptations (1 Corinthians 10:13), forgives us of sin (1 John 1:9), and sanctifies us (1 Corinthians 1:9; Philippians 1:6).
When a person walks consistently with God, in humble service to Him, he or she can be called “faithful.” When Nehemiah had to leave Jerusalem to return to Persia, he put Hanani and Hananiah in charge. The reason for his choice of these men was that they were “more faithful and God-fearing . . . than many” (Nehemiah 7:2, ESV). Nehemiah needed men of character whom he could trust. Men who would not take bribes, who were committed to the welfare of the people, and who would uphold the integrity of the office. Notice, also, that faithfulness is associated with fearing God. The better we truly know God, the more we will want to imitate Him (Ephesians 5:1). Other examples of faithfulness include Silas (1 Peter 5:12), Tychicus (Ephesians 6:21), Epaphras (Colossians 1:7), Onesimus (Colossians 4:9), and Moses (Hebrews 3:2). Faithfulness affects every relationship we have.
The Bible says it is a gift from God. When we receive Christ as Lord, the Holy Spirit indwells us and brings the blessings of love, joy, peace and faithfulness (Galatians 5:22). The fullness of these blessings depends on walking with God and yielding to His Spirit. We should be faithful to read and abide by God’s Word and to seek the Lord in prayer (Psalm 1:1-2; Ephesians 6:18).

Hebrews 13:17 tells us to:
Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.
It is the desire of Harvest Bible Church that all ministries would seek unity and faithfulness within the body of HBC.
It is the desire of Harvest Bible Church that all ministries would place the direction and care of each ministry under the leadership and direction of the HBC Elders.
As Ministry Leader of: ______________________________________________
I agree to follow the direction of this accord.
Name: __________________________________________________________
Signature: _______________________________________________________
Date: ___________________________________________________________

HBC SENIOR PASTOR JOB DESCRIPTION

Status: Full time, Salaried

Reports to: Council of Elders

Hours: 50 Hours/week +

Benefits: Health Insurance, Continuing Education

Overview:
Harvest Bible Church strives to be a Church of the Lord Jesus Christ as described, established, and mandated by the New Testament. We affirm the Holy Bible as the inspired Word of God and as a basis of any statement of faith and belief. The primary term that describes the role of pastor is elder, bishop, and teacher. In 1Timothy 3:1-7 Elder or episkopos refers to the shepherding and oversight of believers, and involves teaching, preaching and caring. In 1Peter 5:1-4, Peter address his fellow elders and tells them to…be shepherds of Gods flock under their care, serving as overseers not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be.

Leadership:
There is no finer example for Christian leadership than our Lord Jesus Christ. He declared, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” John 10:11. It is within this verse that we see the perfect description of a Christian Servant Leader. He is one who acts as a shepherd to those sheep in his care.
• The shepherd is one who has several roles in regard to his sheep. He feeds, nurtures, comforts, corrects, and protects. The shepherd of the Lord’s flock leads by modeling godliness and righteousness in his own life and encourages others to follow his example. Of course the ultimate example is Christ Himself. The apostle Paul understood this: “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ” 1 Corinthians 11:1.
• Under the plan that God has ordained for His church, leadership is a position of humble, loving service. Church leadership is ministry, not management. Those whom God designates as leaders are not called to be governing monarchs, but humble servants. Those who would lead Gods people must above all exemplify sacrifice, devotion, submission, and lowliness. Jesus gave us the pattern when he stooped to wash His disciple’s feet: John 13.
Duties and Responsibilities:
• Fully support and uphold the Harvest Bible Church Statement of Faith, Constitution, and By-Laws.
• Have special charge and responsibility of the teaching, pulpit ministries, and Christian education of all ages of the church, including educational materials. The goal of all preaching and teaching ministry is to understand, exposit, and communicate the Full Counsel and Truth of God’s Word. It is never to be used to further anyone’s personal agenda or personal beliefs. Special consideration may need to be given to avoid addressing from the pulpit topics that have been recently addressed privately with members of the congregation in order to reduce the likelihood of members feeling “picked on”. 2 Corinthians 4:5 is a great summary of the goal of preaching as given in the New Testament. Paul writes: For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. This Christ-centered message may seem foolish to unbelievers, but Christ is the sum content and goal of our preaching (kerygma): The Greek word kerygma means proclamation. 1 Corinthians 1:23-24: We preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
• Principal communicator of God’s Word in public worship and ensures that the church is growing in maturity in Christ as identified in Acts 6:4: … give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word., Ephesians 4:11-16: So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers,  to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work., 2 Timothy 4:1-5: in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.  For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.  They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.  But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry., Titus 1:9: He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.
• Preach God’s Word without reservation, apology, or compromise; however discernment, gentleness, and love are to be used at all times when communicating God’s Truth from the pulpit. 2 Timothy 2:24-26: And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.
• The Senior Pastor will equip, educate, and edify the church; cast vision, and tie mission to message to make it actionable for discipleship. “I heard it, now what do I do?” As mandated in Ephesians 4:11-13: And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. and Matthew 28:18-20:  And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
• The Senior Pastor will lead and serve in accordance with the expectations set forth in 1Peter 5:1-3:  Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed, shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.
• Proclaim the Gospel to believers and unbelievers and equip the flock, leading the church to fulfill the ministries God gives to the church and to care for church members and other people in the community. 1Peter 3:15-18 but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong. For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit
• Differences of scriptural interpretation, understanding, or doctrine within the body must be handled quickly, congenially, and privately (with consultation of the elder board). If this leads to a sermon series it will be approved by the elder board. Philippians 2:3-8 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.  Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
• Communicate if there are two or more acceptable and orthodox views of doctrine within the church (secondary issues), each orthodox view is to be given respectful consideration. The ultimate goal is to lead the body to the truth of God’s Word.
• Communicate a quarterly sermon plan to the elder board to build continuity, clarity of message, and unity of mission.
• Partner with the functional heads of ministry within the church to define, develop, share, and spread the mission of the church through focused teaching, preaching, in-reach, and out-reach under God’s Word.
• Remain available to the body:
• Arrive Sunday mornings before services and allow for adequate time to meet, greet, and pray with those in need; remain available after church services for the same.
• Be available to attend and support all ministries as necessary and appropriate. Visibility and support is imperative.
• Regular church office hours will be necessary in order to be accessible and available to the body and staff.
• Great flexibility of time and schedule may be required as needs dictate.
• Oversee and lead all other members of the Harvest Bible Church staff. Be responsible to ensure that all staff, pastoral and otherwise, fulfills the requirements of their job duties and descriptions.
• Oversee outreach and pastoral care efforts, including visitations, counseling, evangelism, weddings, funerals, etc. A monthly report will be provided to the elder board that details pastoral activities and results.
• Maintain proper relationships at home with wife and family. Ephesians 5:25-28 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; 1 Timothy 3:4-5:  He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity  (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?)
• Continued education and development:
• In addition to regular vacation time a minimum of two consecutive weeks sabbatical time will be required to reflect, refresh, and refocus church/ministry needs and goals. Pre-organized and planned pastoral meetings, seminars, education, and conferences may be appropriate.
• Find an active godly mentor or mentors with whom you can relate and rely on.
• Define your areas of strength and work to build on them.
• Define your weakness and work to improve them.

Final Commendations:
Perhaps the most important of all, these will mark the man of God and will be pursued daily through the Holy Spirit.
Wisdom & Prayer: To tap into Gods wisdom we must first desire it and ask God for it. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. James 1:5.
Humility: Never forget that Jesus has exchanged our worthlessness for His infinite worth, our sin for His righteousness, I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me. Galatians 2:20. That’s true humility!
LOVE: Agape is love which is of and from God, whose very nature is love itself. God is Love, the apostle affirms this in 1 John 4:8: Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
In the same way, we are to love others sacrificially. Jesus gave the parable of the Good Samaritan as an example of sacrifice for the sake of others, even for those who may care nothing at all for us, or even hate us, as the Jews did the Samaritans. Sacrificial love is not based on a feeling, but a determined act of the will, a joyful resolve to put the welfare of others above our own. But this type of love does not come naturally to humans. Because of our fallen nature, we are incapable of producing such a love. If we are to love as God loves, that love—that agape—can only come from its true Source. This is the love which “has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit given to us” when we became His children (Romans 5:5). Because that love is now in our hearts, we can obey Jesus who said, “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. As I have loved you, you should also love one another” (John 13:34). This new commandment involves loving one another as He loved us sacrificially, even to the point of death. But, again, it is clear that only God can generate within us the kind of self-sacrificing love which is the proof that we are His children. “By this we have known the love of God, because He laid down His life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers” (1 John 3:16). Because of God’s love toward us, we are now able to love one another.
Exhortation for all Leaders of Harvest Bible Church:
2 Timothy 2:24-26 The Lord’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.

Council of Elders Harvest Bible Church
12/7/2014

HBC YOUTH PASTOR JOB DESCRIPTION

Status: Full-time, Salaried

Reports To: Sr. Pastor

Hours: 50 hours per week

Benefits: Health Insurance, Continuing Education

General Purpose of Position:
To build young disciples for Christ by developing and implementing a comprehensive approach to youth ministry (in the areas of group building, worship, discipleship, mission, and outreach) while serving as a spiritual leader and role model. (Define in more detail)

Organizational Relationship and Supervision:
The Youth Pastor reports to the Senior Pastor for spiritual and ministry guidance. The Youth Pastor will provide a quarterly report to the elder board and participate in an annual review prepared by the senior pastor and approved by the elder board.

The Primary Task:
There shall be a comprehensive approach to the development and implementation of the youth ministry at all levels;
-love youth where they are
-encourage youth in developing their relationship to God
-provide them with opportunities for nurture and growth
-challenge them to respond to God’s call to serve in their communities and world
HBC church leadership will provide a safe/secure place for all youth activity to take place.

Responsibilities:
• Be an advocate for youth and educate the congregation about the hopes, concerns and needs of youth in the local church and community.
• Help plan, develop, and implement all aspects of a balanced youth ministry in the areas of group building, worship, discipleship, mission, and outreach.
• Develop and guide the work of a Youth Council or equivalent body in an annual process of evaluating the vision and goals of the youth ministry and directing monthly planning sessions.
• Mentor youth in developing their leadership skills.
• Be aware of resources for developing the youth ministry programming and participate in continuing education events and training opportunities.
• Recruit and train volunteers who work with youth in all aspects of youth ministry and ensure adequate volunteer support and adult to youth ratios.
• Be a liaison between the church and other community organizations, people, and resources that relate to youth and youth ministries.
• Coordinate Sunday school curriculum for youth (grades 6-12) and recruit teachers in partnership with the Director of Christian Education.
• Work in partnership with the missions to effectively reach youth in the community and develop a strategic youth ministry outreach plan.
• Keep records of youth participation and manage the youth ministry budget.
• Communicate in a timely manner and as effectively as possible using all available resources (email, website, bulletin, newsletter, bulletin board, etc.). Ensure communication with church staff and leadership, parents, and the congregation as a whole.
• Make yourself available to youth in a variety of ways (attendance at extracurricular activities, visitation, times of crisis, etc.)
• Work in concert with the gifts and talents of other staff members and maintain a teamwork mentality.
• Ensure that the Child Protection Policy is observed in all youth ministry settings.

Qualifications and Aptitudes:
• Must embrace HBC statement of faith.
• Must be a disciple of Jesus Christ. The Greek term for “disciple” in the New Testament is mathetes, which means more than just “student” or “learner.” A disciple is a “follower,” someone who adheres completely to the teachings of another, making them his rule of life and conduct. The Pharisees prided themselves in being disciples of Moses (John 9:28). Jesus’ followers were called “disciples.” Their discipleship began with Jesus’ call and required them to exercise their will in response (Matthew 9:9).
Jesus was quite explicit about the cost of following Him. Discipleship requires a totally committed life: “Any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple” (Luke 14:33). Sacrifice is expected: “Jesus said to his disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me’” (Matthew 16:24).

• A bachelor’s degree in a related field is minimum requirement.
• Must have excellent written and verbal communication skills, conflict management skills, and computer skills.
• Must possess a proven ability to work effectively with youth, diverse individuals, and teams of volunteers.

5/24/2015
Harvest Bible Council of Elders