Constitution

Preamble

So that things may be done decently and in order, and that we may more readily help each other in our Christian service, we declare and establish this constitution to which we voluntarily submit ourselves.

The purpose of this constitution and By-Laws is not to restrict the rights of anyone, but to define and protect the church and to insure co-operation and unity.

 

Article I – Name and Address

These are the By-Laws of the FaithFinders Church, a corporation in the State of Michigan, established in 2002. These By-Laws were adopted on the 20th day of October, 2002. Amended April 30th, 2004.

The mailing address for the FaithFinders is
229 W. Second Street
Constantine, Michigan 49042.

 

Article II – Purpose

Section I - Purpose

  1. This congregation is organized as a Church exclusively for charitable, religious, and educational purposes, including, for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code of 1986 (or the corresponding provision for any future United States Federal Tax Code), including, but not limited to for such purposes, the establishing and maintaining of religious worship, the building, maintaining and operating of churches, parsonages, schools, chapels, radio stations, televisions stations, rescue missions, print shops, day care centers, camps, nursing homes, and cemeteries, and any other ministries that the Church may be led of God to establish.

  2. The Church shall also commission, license, or ordain men and women to the gospel ministry; evangelize the unsaved by the proclaiming of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ (Mark 16:15); educate believers in a manner consistent with the requirements of the Holy Scripture, both in Sunday and weekday schools of education; maintain missionary activities in the United States and any foreign country; and engage in any other ministry that the Church may decide, from time to time, to pursue in obedience to the will of GOD.

Section II - Mission Statement

  1. TO SERVE GOD – by centering our lives on Jesus Christ and the truth of His Gospel. Equipping men and women with the understanding of GOD’s call...

  2. TO SERVE EACH OTHER – by encouraging one another in word and deed, committing ourselves to each other and...

  3. TO SERVE THE WORLD AROUND US – by demonstrating the Love of GOD, which has been performed in our lives, bringing hope and help to people everywhere through Christ by leading them to faith by salvation through Jesus Christ, and in this way, WE SERVE GOD.

 

Article III – Statement of Faith Issues

  1. The Bible: The only inspired Word of GOD. All sixty-six Books of the Old & New Testaments, verbally inspired in all parts, and therefore wholly without error as originally given of GOD
    {2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:21}
  2. The One True God: Without beginning, manifesting as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit
    {Luke 3:22; Matt. 28:19; Matt. 28:18; 1 Tim. 6:15; Psa. 139:7-12; Prov. 15:3; Heb. 4:13; Prov. 15:11}
  3. The Father: The righteous judge, seated on the throne, eternally living in heaven
    {Luke 3:22, 1 Cort.8:6, Rev. 3:21}
  4. Jesus Christ, The Son: Born of a virgin, His spiritually created existence and Deity, His earthly ministry and sinless life, His vicarious death and atonement through His blood at Calvary, His bodily resurrection, His ascension into heaven, His present ministry and His coming again in power
    {Mat. 1:20-23; John 1:1-3; Heb. 4:15; 1 Cort. 15:3; Heb. 9:12; Luke 24:36-43; Heb. 4:14-16; Acts 1:11; Rev. 19:11-16; Jude 14,15}
  5. The Holy Spirit: His personality, and Deity and His work in each believer; baptism and indwelling at the moment of regeneration and filling to empower for Christian life and service. All the believers are entitled to and should ardently expect, and earnestly seek, the promise of the Father, the Baptism in the Holy Ghost and fire, according to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ. This was the normal experience of all in the early Christian Church. With it comes the endowment of power for life and service, the bestowment of the gifts and their uses in the word of the ministry. This wonderful experience is distinct from and subsequent to the experience of the new birth. The baptism of believers in the Holy Ghost is witnessed by the physical sign of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of GOD gives them utterance. The speaking in tongues in this instance are the same in essence as the gift of tongues but different in purpose and use, and all is received by faith.
    {John 16:7-15; Acts 5:3,4; 1 Cort. 12:13; Rom. 8:9; Eph.5:18; Acts 1:8; Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4; Acts 1:8; 1 Cort. 12:1-31; Acts 10: 44-46; Acts 15:7-9; Acts 2:4; 1 Cort 12:4-10,28}
  6. Satan: His existence and personality as the great adversary of GOD and His people, his judgement and final doom.
    {Rev. 12:1-10; John 12:31; Rev. 20:10}
  7. Man: His direct creation in the image of GOD, being made in three parts, spirit, soul, and body, his subsequent fall into sin resulting in spiritual death and the necessity of the new birth for his salvation.
    {Gen. 1:26-28; Heb. 4:12; 1 Thes. 5:23; Gen. 3:1-24; Rom. 5:12; John 3:3-5}
  8. Sin: Disobedience of the Laws of GOD, which results in separation from GOD and the curse that all mankind, is born into.
    {Rom. 3:23}
  9. Salvation: A complete and eternal salvation by God’s grace alone, received as the gift of God through repentance and personal faith in the Lord Jesus and His finished work on the cross. Confession and repentance are required for salvation.
    {Eph. 2:8-9; Titus 3:5-6; 1 Peter 1:18-19; Acts 2:38, 3:19; 2 Cort. 7:10; Mat. 10:32-33; Rom. 10:9-10; Prov. 28:13; Mat. 3:6; 1 John 1:9}
  10. Dedication: Infants and small children have the privilege of being dedicated to the Lord in the church upon the request of the parents or guardians.
    {Mark 10:13-16; Luke 18:15-16)}
  11. Water Baptism: Baptism in water is by immersion, and is a direct commandment of the Lord and is for believers only. The ordinance is a symbol of the Christian’s identification with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection.
    {Mat. 28:19; Acts 2:38; Acts 19:4-5; Rom. 6:4; Col. 2:12; Acts 8:36-39; Col. 3:17}
  12. The Lord's Supper: The Lord’s Supper, consisting of the elements, bread and the fruit of the vine, is the symbol expressing our sharing the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ, a memorial of His suffering and death, and is enjoining on all believers “until He comes”.
    {2 Peter 1:4; 1 Cort. 11:23-32}
  13. Footwashing: As a symbol of the servitude of the Christians.
    {John 13:4-15}
  14. The Church: The church is the body of Christ. The Christian church consists of believers in Jesus Christ who have repented of their sins, who have accepted Jesus Christ by faith and are born again, and are striving by God’s grace to live a holy and obedient Christian life.
    {Eph. 4:4; 1 Cort.12:12; 1 Peter 1:22-23; John 3:3, 6-7}
  15. Beliver's Authority: The believers have through Christ Jesus to do these works.
    {James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:8-11; Eph. 6:11-18; Luke 10: 17-20}
  16. Divine Healing: Physical healing is in Christ’s atonement and is available to all believers through faith in the name of Jesus Christ. Ministry to the sick includes anointing with oil, laying on of hands and the prayer of faith.
    {Mark 16:18; James 5:14-20; 1 Peter 2:24; Mat. 8:17; Isaiah 53: 4-5; Acts 19:17; James 5:4-16}
  17. Future Life: Conscious existence of the dead, the resurrection of the body, the judgment of unbelievers, the eternal life of the saved and the eternal punishment of the lost.
    {Luke 16:19-31; John 5:28-29; Rev. 20:11-15; John 3:16; Mat. 25:46; Rev. 20:15; Rev. 21:6-8}
  18. Millennial Reign of Jesus: The revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ from heaven, the salvation of national Israel, and the Millennial Reign of Christ on earth is the Scriptural promise and the world’s hope.
    {2 Thes. 1:7-8; Rev. 19:11-14; Rom.11:26-27; Rev. 20:1-7; 1 Thes. 4:13-18}
     

Article IV – Issues

We take these positions on these issues:
  1. Human Sexuality: We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity should be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. We believe that any form of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, beastiality, incest, fornication, adultery, and pornography are sinful perversions of God’s gift of sex.
    {Gen. 2:24; Gen. 19:5, 13; Gen. 26:8-9; Lev. 18:1-30; Rom. 1:26-31; I Cort. 5:1; I Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4}
  2. Divorce and Remarriage: We believe that God hates divorce and intends marriage to last until one of the spouse dies. Divorce and remarriage is regarded as adultery except on the grounds of fornication or an unbeliever desiring to depart, then a brother or sister is not under bondage in such cases.
    {I Cort. 7:12-16; Mal. 2:14-17; Matt. 19:3-12; Rom. 7:1-3}
  3. Abortion: We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder in the sight of God. We reject any teaching that justifies the abortion of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the mental well being of the mother.
    {Job 3:16; Psalms 51:5; 139:14-16; Isa. 44:24; 49:1,5; Jer. 1:5; 20:15-18; Luke 1:44}
  4. Civil Government: We believe that god has ordained and created all authority consisting of three basic institution: 1) the home (or family); 2) the Church; and 3) the State. Every person is subject to these authorities, but all (including the authorities themselves) are answerable to God and governed by His Word. God has given each institution specific Biblical responsibilities and balanced those responsibilities with the understanding that no institution has the right to infringe upon the other. The home (family), the church, and the State are equal and sovereign in their respective Biblically assigned spheres of responsibility under God.
    {Rom. 13:1-7; Eph. 5:22-24; Heb. 13:17; I Pet. 2:13-14}
  5. Relations of Church and State: God has entrusted the church, the solemn Biblical responsibility of being the conscience of society, culture and government. As such the church has a duty before God to speak to the issues that arise from and relate to society, culture and government. Specifically, the church, in the tradition of the prophets, is required to call government to account before God for the actions taken by the government with the view toward keeping the government in its proper role and relationship as a steward under God of the resources of the nation.
    {I Kings 18:18; II Chron. 15:1-4; Matt 5:13-14; Acts 12:23; I Sam 15:14-35}
    The church has a divine mandate to practice its religion as dictated by God. The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof. The church is the blood-bought bride of Christ of whom Jesus is the head, the Lord and the only master. As such we categorically reject any and all claims by the state to headship or sovereignty over the church. When earthly governments leave their God-ordained sphere of responsibility and seek to restrain, hamper or limit the church’s obedience to Christ in all areas of life, then the church must and will obey God rather than man and must also confront the government with its error and call it back to its proper place under God.
    {Ex.8, 9, 10; Dan. 3, 6; Acts 4:19; 5:29}
  6. Cult: We believe a cult is a one or more than one person basing their beliefs around one mans interpretation of God, life and man. It always denies the central doctrines of Christianity as from the Bible. They very often claim Christ or the Bible as a central part of their faith, but it must be kept in mind that they are always in direct opposition to the Christian doctrines of the Godhead (Trinity) and Deity.
    {2 John 9-11}
  7. Occult: We believe occultism is participation or involvement in any way with fortune-telling, divination, enchantments, witchcraft, sorcery, necromancy, prognostication, astrologers, magic practices and spiritism. Scripture warns that they, which do these things, shall not inherit the kingdom of God and are an abomination unto the Lord.
    {Deut. 18:9-12; Isa. 47:12-15; Gal. 5:19-21}
  8. Deliverance: The need for deliverance is manifested by an inability to be free from bondage: e.g., mental (emotional), physical or spiritual normally associated with demon activity. It is God’s desire to bring deliverance to His people.
    {Job 5:19; Ps. 91:3; II Tim. 4:18; Heb. 2:15; II Pet. 2:9}
    We have been granted the authority in the name of Jesus to bring deliverance to others.
    {Mk. 16:17; Jn. 14:12; I Cort. 12:8-11}
    We must understand that our warfare is with the forces of evil, our weapon is the Word of God, our authority and power is from Jesus Himself, and that the battlefield is first of all in the spiritual realms.
    {Eph. 6:12; Mk. 16:17; acts 1:8; Eph. 6:10-18; II Cort. 10:3-5; Rom. 8:9}
  9. Euthanasia: We believe mercy killing or painless killing is the taking of human life, whether self-inflicted, which is suicide/murder, or if induced by another, which is murder. These shall not inherit the Kingdom of God. We believe in the sanctity of life and that life and death are under God’s authority.
    {Gal. 5:19-21; Ps. 90:12; Ps. 68:20; Rev. 1:18}

 

Article V – Membership

Section I - Membership Covenant

Any person who subscribes to the Statement of Faith and who agrees to comply with all of the provisions of the Constitution and By-Laws (and any amendments thereto), may become a member of the congregation by faithfully attending the services of the church for a least six months, signing the membership covenant and being approved by the Pastors and/or Board of Elders.
 

Membership Covenant

 

  1. Received Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and showing fruit as a believer.
    {Mat. 3:8; Mat 7:16}
  2. Must covenant to commit to and abide in the discipline of the Word of God.
    {Mat. 18:15-20; I Cort. 5:1-5}
  3. Must wholeheartedly, without reservations agree with the statement of faith as outlined in the by-laws of the FaithFinders.
    {Rom. 15:5}
  4. Must be in full support of the leadership of FaithFinders.
    {Heb. 13:17}
  5. Six months regular attendance.
  6. Faithfully supporting FaithFinders with tithes and offerings.
    {Mal. 3:10}
  7. Must be 18 years of age to be a voting member.
     
Benefits of Membership
  1. Voting on business matters put before the church by the Executive Board.
  2. Safety, protection, a refuge and fortress in time of trouble.
  3. Eligible to function in the ministries of the church as their gifts (talents) and callings are recognized and released by the Senior Pastors.
  4. Entitled to spiritual covering from those whom God has placed over them in the leadership of the church for the good of their souls.
  5. Assistance and guidance, to come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.
    {Eph. 4:16}
  6. Members may have confidence of a solid secure church for their future and that of their children and their children’s children.
  7. Being a member in regular attendance will provoke you unto love and good works.
    {Heb. 10:24-25}

Membership Agreement Form
Complete this form and submit to a pastor.

Based on the requirements for congregational membership set forth in the preceding paragraphs of these by-laws, the secretary shall establish, keep and maintain a congregational membership list. All those who have met the above requirements and have not been removed because of discipline or their written request shall be included on the roll and shall be active members of the congregation.

 

Section II - Associate Members

Associate membership is set up for those members who cannot regularly attend the services at church. These members have all the benefits and privileges of membership except the right to vote. Those qualified for associate membership would be those who:
 

  1. Are full-time students in another area.
  2. Are serving in missions in another area.
  3. Are shut-in or disabled.
  4. Have special circumstances.
Section III - Inactive Membership

Enrolled members shall be considered inactive for any of the following reasons:

  1. Those who shall without good cause absent themselves from the services of the church for a period of three (3) months.
  2. Those who cease to contribute of their means to support the church.
  3. Those who are out of harmony with the teachings and ministry as set forth in the Bible and in these by-laws.
  4. Those who shall be under some charges of misconduct of who may have fallen into sin.
  5. Those who may be under condemnation through sinful or worldly practices.

They shall lose their voting privileges until they are restored into fellowship. Their standing shall be settled by the definite action of the pastors and the elders.

Restoring a member is of utmost concern and should always be the highest goal. The methods and disciplines required may vary per circumstance, and will always be at the desecration of the pastors and the elders.

Section IV - Discipline of Members

The Pastors and elders have sole authority in determining heretical deviations from the Scriptures, Statement of Faith and Issues, or violations of the Membership Covenant. If the pastor(s) or an elder is the subject of a disciplinary matter, he shall not sit in the disciplinary hearing in any capacity. He/she shall be entitled to same steps as other church members and be subject to the same discipline. Members are expected to demonstrate special loyalty and concern for one another.

When a member becomes aware of an offense of such magnitude that it hinders spiritual growth and testimony, they should take the following steps:

  1. After self-inspection, should go alone to the offending person, in humility, and seek to restore him.
  2. If reconciliation is not reached, a second member, either the pastor or an elder, is to accompany the one seeking to resolve the matter.
  3. If the matter is still unresolved, the pastor and elders, who are Biblically responsible for putting down murmuring, shall hear the matter. After hearing the matter, they shall make a recommendation for resolving the matter.
  4. Should the recommendation not be followed, the offending person(s) who refuse that recommendation are to be removed from the membership of the church, at a membership meeting called for that purpose.

No matter may be heard for the sake of, or recommendation by, the pastor(s) or elders unless all the above steps are taken in order, except in the case of public offense.

If an unrepentant offending party is removed from membership, all contact with that person, except family members, is to be only for the sake of restoration to the fellowship.

{1 Cor. 5:9-11; Titus 3:9-11}

Again, restoration is the highest priority in discipline. To that end, the pastor(s) and elders will lead in bringing the disciplines needed and use the methods necessary to bring restoration if possible.
 

Article VI – Meetings

Section I - Annual Meeting

There shall be an annual business meeting of the voting members of the FaithFinders, at which time the election of board members shall be held and reports of church officers shall be read. This meeting shall convene on the second Saturday of February of each year at such a time and place as the elder board may determine.

Section II - Special Meeting

Special business meetings of the church may be called when necessary, after proper notice has been given by the pastor or the secretary of the board, providing the meeting has been agreed upon by a majority of the pastors and elders. Special meetings may also be called by petition, if said petition has been signed by not less than one third of the active membership. This petition is to then be given into the hands of the secretary of the board.

Section III - Notice of Meetings

Notice of the annual business meeting or any special meeting, together with a statement of purpose, shall be sent to all members at their place of residence at least 5 days prior to the meeting date.

Section IV - Quorum

No record of any annual or special business meeting of the church shall be made unless one-half or more of the active members are present to constitute a quorum.

Section V - Absentee Ballot

In the event a qualified voting member finds it impossible to attend a business meeting due to illness or another unavoidable reason, they may cast an absentee ballot, providing they have requested it two days prior to the meeting. The marked ballot must be sealed in an envelope with the voting member’s name on the outside. The envelope is then given to the secretary of the board who will approve the name of the member and record all absentee voters in the minutes of that meeting.
 

Article XI – Private Inurement

No part of the net earnings of the Church shall inure to the benefit of or be distributed to its members, trustees, officers or other private persons, except that the Church shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for the services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of its purposes set fourth in the purpose clause hereof. No substantial part of the activities of the organization shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the organization shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any other provision of this document, the organization shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to be carried on (a) by an organization exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (b) by an organization, contributions to which are deductible under section 170(c) (2) of the Internal revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
 

Article XII – Dissolution

Upon the dissolution of the Church, the Trustees shall, after paying or making provisions for payment of all the liabilities of the Church, assets shall be distributed for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or to a state or local government, for a public purpose. Any such assets not disposed of shall be disposed of by the Court of Common Pleas of the county in which the principal office of the Church is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organization or organizations, as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.
 

Article XIII – Racial Nondiscrimination

The Church shall have a racially nondiscriminatory policy and therefore shall not discriminate against members, applicants, students, and others on the basis of race, color or national or ethnic origin.
 

Article XV – Amendments

This Constitution may be revised or amended by a majority vote of the members present and voting, at any regular Church business meeting, provided that said revision or amendments has been submitted in writing and announced from the pulpit fourteen (14) days before the vote is taken.
 

Adoption

This Constitution was adopted by a two-thirds majority vote of the members present and voting at a duly called meeting of the Church in which a quorum was present.


with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible ~ Matthew 19:26