Articles of Incorporation and Doctrinal Creeds
1. THE DEITY OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST
We believe in the Divine nature of the Lord Jesus Christ. Not only is the Lord Jesus Christ a perfect, sinless man in completeness but he is equally believed to be a manifestation of Almighty God in the flesh. Not only is he our Savior but he is our God – our “Lord” and Savior, Jesus Christ. John 1:1,14; 1 Timothy 3:16; Revelation 1:6-8; Matthew 1:21-23; Colossians 2:9. Any teaching contrary to this is understood and believed to be that of anti-christ. 1 John 4:1-3.
2. THE HOLY BIBLE
We believe in the Divine Preservation of the Holy Scriptures. Through the guidance of the Divine nature of the Holy Spirit, and the instrumentality of human beings, God Almighty has preserved His words in the way He wants us to have them. This is believed to be culminated in a Perfect, Pure, Inerrant, Infallible, Written Revelation as found in the Authorized Version of the Old King James Bible. Every verse and punctuation of scripture in this “Old and Archaic Book” is truly believed to be “given by inspiration of God” and is our Final and Only Absolute Authority in ALL matters of life and death from cover to cover, including the cover. Psalms 12:6,7; 1 Peter 1:23; Matthew 24:35; Proverbs 30:5; Psalms 119:160; 2 Timothy 3:15,16.
3. THE VIRGIN BIRTH
We believe the Old Testament prophecies of a child born of a virgin, have been fulfilled in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. Mary is believed to be his virgin mother and his father is God himself through the miraculous conception by the Holy Ghost. Isaiah 7:14; Genesis 3:15; Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:26-35.
We believe a man MUST be born again to be saved. Salvation is totally independent of a man’s religion, tradition, education or works. A man must believe in his heart that Jesus Christ died as a substitute payment for his sins, was buried and on the third day rose again, A man must then;
(1) repent of his sins and
(2) receive the Lord Jesus as his personal Savior by faith in His finished work at Calvary.
We believe the Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ washes away all of our sins, no matter how deep, no matter how dirty. We further believe that once a man is saved, he is eternally secure and forever a child of God. John 3:7; Ephesians 2:8-9; Acts 20:21; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 10:8-13; Acts 16:30-31; John 10:26-30; John 1:12-13.
5. SECOND ADVENT
We believe that the return of the Lord Jesus Christ is two-fold.
a. His coming. All true Christians will be caught up together into Heaven. We believe and patiently look forward to that great event known as the Rapture. In less time than a split second, God’s children will be transformed miraculously. 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Corinthians 15:50-58; 1 John 3:1-3.
b. His revelation. We believe in the future, literal, visible and physical return and reign of the Lord Jesus Christ on earth. After conquering the rebellious kings and kingdoms of this world, we believe the Lord Jesus Christ will set up His own Kingdom on this earth for a period of one thousand (1000) years to reign with his saints. 2 Thessalonians 1:7,8; Revelation 19:11-21; Revelation 20:1-7.
a. Water baptism. We believe water baptism shall be by immersion. This is a figure of the Christian union in Christ’s death, burial and resurrection. This is not believed to be required for salvation but in obedience to Christ’s command and in answer of a good conscience toward God, every believer is required to be baptized. Matthew 3:16; Matthew 28:18-19; 1 Peter 3:21.
b. The Lord’s Supper. Although not essential to salvation, we believe the Lord’s supper is an ordinance to be obeyed by the local church. The elements being new wine (pure grape juice) and unleavened bread. The observance of the above is NOT believed to be a sacrifice (physically or spiritually) but a memorial;
(1) of the death of our Lord Jesus Christ and
(2) of his coming again.
1 Corinthians 11:2, 20-34.
ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION
1. Name of Church
Victory Bible Baptist Church (hereafter referred to as “said church”)
Location of Church: Mystic, Connecticut
2. Purpose of Church
a. To establish a place of worship for a group of believers.
b. To establish and edify the faith of believer’s in fellowship, prayer and praise.
c. To learn the Word of God through the teaching and preaching of the Holy Scriptures.
d. To be a public witness (in testimony and outreach) for the Lord Jesus Christ.
(1) in the local community and
(2) worldwide, through missionaries.
3. Use of Income
a. To pay for necessary church facilities and functions.
b. To distribute Christian literature.
c. To support a Pastor and other ministers (as needed).
d. To support missionaries and other Christian works or like faith.
e. Potential future ministries that may develop.
4. Qualifications for Membership
a. Salvation of the individual (Acts 2:41)
b. Baptism of the individual after having been saved (Acts 2:41)
c. Accepted by majority vote of the congregation.
5. Qualifications of Officers
a. Must be saved.
b. Must be a Bible believer.
c. Must be God-called.
d. Must be voted in by a majority of the congregation (for Pastor and/or Deacons).
6. Disposition of Assets Should Said Church be Dissolved
a. All debts incurred by said church, as an incorporated whole, shall be paid off by liquidating all assets and monies of said church.
b. Upon dissolution of said church, assets shall be distributed for one or more tax-exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501c(3), Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future Federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the Federal government, or to a state or local government for a public purpose,
7. Person(s) in Charge of Business
a. All business and disciplinary action of any sort shall be conducted by the Pastor in conjunction with the duly elected / appointed officers relative to their respective duties.
b. All business meetings will be preceded by prayer and called together by the Pastor.
c. The Pastor may veto any motion brought forth by said officers.
8. Dismissal of a Pastor
a. A Pastor of said church shall be dismissed only on the following grounds:
(1) If he is living in open and unrepentant sin.
(2) If he sufficiently errs from the herein contained doctrines of the Bible so as to be deemed a heretic (Matthew 18:15-17 and Titus 3:10).
(3) If he repeatedly attempts to cause strife and division among members of said church by gossip or violating confidential matters.
b. A Pastor shall be given the opportunity to answer any accusations against him, on the above grounds, publicly before the congregation. Only after this address shall the congregation vote upon the matter of dismissal.
c. In the event the Pastor is dismissed, or resigns, the position may be temporarily filled by his assistant or by a male member of said church (providing he believes the Doctrinal Creeds contained herein).
9. Guidelines for Selection of New Pastor
If the Pastor of said church is dismissed, resigns or becomes incapable of performing his duties and responsibilities, the following guidelines are hereby set forth for selection of a new Pastor:
a. The candidate must be a male.
b. Any likely candidate is to be given the opportunity to preach and give his testimony of salvation and to present a statement of faith with regard, but not limited, to the doctrinal creeds of this constitution.
c. Any candidate not in full agreement with any of the doctrinal creeds contained herein shall be deemed unfit to fill the position of Pastor of said church.
d. The congregation is to be notified at least one week prior to voting on a new Pastor. The authority and validity of the voting will include all members present at the “specified time” during which the vote is to be conducted (absentee ballots are deemed acceptable if collected prior to voting deadline).
e. The above guidelines shall be binding in the selection of new Pastor.
10. Voting rules
a. Each person is entitled to one, closed-ballot vote; no name will appear on the ballot.
b. Voting will include all congregation members of said church age eighteen (18) years and older; majority vote rules.
c. Business voting will consist of Pastor and Elders of said church; majority vote rules.
d. Any and all changes to the constitution of require a two-thirds majority vote of the congregation of said church.
e. Two-thirds majority vote of the congregation of said church is required for dismissal of Pastor.
f. Officers requiring a vote of the congregation of said church are Pastor and Deacons; majority vote rules.
11. Qualifications of Officers
a. Pastor (Assistant Pastor). “Of necessity” as set forth in Acts 6:3,4; “ideally” as set forth in 1 Timothy 3:1-7.
b. Deacons (including Elders). “Of necessity” as set forth in Acts 6:1-5; “ideally” as set forth in 1 Timothy 3:8-13.
c. Officers and other staff members. These must, of necessity, be saved and must adhere to the doctrinal creeds of this constitution and to the overall rule of the said church Pastor.
12. Responsibilities of Officers and Staff Members (Internal rules of Operation)
a. The Pastor shall be the presiding Elder. He is to conduct the services of said church as he sees fit and to administer the ordinances and perform other duties incumbent to his office. He is to have the overall rule of said church. He is to preach and teaches the Word of God, counsel church members and enforce church discipline. The Pastor has the privilege of allowing speakers to fill his pulpit and to plan for evangelistic meetings and missionary conferences.
b. The assistant Pastor shall help and assist the Pastor and perform his duties in his absence. He shall be chosen by the Pastor.
c. Deacons shall cooperate with the Pastor in the spiritual welfare of said church. They shall assist in the daily ministration of the needs to the congregation.
d. Elders (Trustees and Presbytery) shall be chosen by the Pastor and approved by the majority of existing Elders. They shall handle legal, financial and disciplinary matters and plan church events. Elders of said church shall work together with the Pastor with regard to their duties Business meetings and voting is referred to in paragraphs and 10 of this constitution.
e. The Secretary shall be chosen by the Pastor. The secretary shall perform the office duties of filing, typing, mailing, record keeping and other duties as may be required by the Pastor.
f. The Treasurer shall be chosen by the Pastor and approved by a majority vote of Elders. The Treasure shall be responsible for the accounting of said church’s monies (including financial record keeping and maintenance of any bank accounts in said church’s name) He shall be authorized to sign said church’s check, when co-signed by one additional elder and the Pastor. The final authority for the issuance of checks rests with the Pastor.
g. The Sunday School Superintendent shall be appointed by the Pastor. He shall manage and promote the Sunday School services in all departments, with the exception of the Adult Sunday School. The Pastor shall head the Adult Sunday School. The Sunday School Superintendent, with the approval of the Pastor, shall appoint all officers and teachers of the Sunday School department.
h. The Youth Director shall be chosen by the Pastor. He shall be in charge of choir, outings, fellowships and the counseling of young people. He shall work together with the Pastor in seeking the spiritual growth and edification of the young people of said church.
i. Additional staff positions shall be established as deemed necessary by the Elders and the Pastor and said church (note sub-paragraph 12.g. above).
a. We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of marriage between one natural born man and one natural born woman. We believe that any form of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery, and pornography are sinful perversions of God's gift of sex. We believe that God disapproves of and forbids any attempt to alter one's gender by surgery, drugs, or appearance. Genesis 2:24; Genesis 19:5, 13; Genesis 26:8-9; Leviticus 18:1-30; Romans 1:26-29; 1 Corinthians 5:1, 6:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8; Hebrews 13:4.
b. Any marriage to be conducted must be preceded by Pastoral counseling and willing acceptance of Bible standards. To be considered, the prospective man and woman must be active church members in good standing of Victory Bible Baptist Church or a church of like faith and convictions. At such time as such counseling and prepartion is deemed sufficient the marriage ceremony may be conducted. An unwillingness to accept this counseling or a failure to complete it will stop any further procedings.