NORTHWEST BIBLE CHURCH
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Statement of Purpose
Northwest Bible Church is committed to proclaiming God’s Word through a caring church family. In doing this, our goal is to glorify God by providing an environment in which Christians can grow to maturity in their faith, and by ministering to those who are outside the body of Christ.
ARTICLE I: NAME
The name of this church is Northwest Bible Church of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
ARTICLE II: DOCTRINE
WE BELIEVE that the Bible, as contained in both the Old and New Testaments, is the inspired and inerrant Word of God and is the only authority regarding our faith and duty (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
WE BELIEVE in one God (Deut. 6:4) who exists eternally in three separate and distinct Persons: the Father (Eph. 4:6), Son (Jn. 1:1, 8:24), and Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3-4).
WE BELIEVE that all have sinned against God (Rom. 3:23) and deserve the judgment of eternal death (Rom. 6:23).
WE BELIEVE that Jesus Christ is the unique Son of God (Jn. 1:18), truly God and truly man (Phil. 2:6-7), who came to redeem sinners (Mt. 1:21).
WE BELIEVE in the literal and physical resurrection and return of Jesus Christ (Lk. 24:39; Acts 1:11).
WE BELIEVE that salvation is by the grace of God through faith and not by works (Eph. 2:8-9); however, good works are a necessary manifestation of true saving faith (James 2:26).
WE BELIEVE in the future judgment whereby God blesses the righteous with eternal life and condemns the wicked to eternal punishment (Mt. 25:31-46; Rev. 20:11-15).
For a more detailed explanation of our beliefs, see our “Statement of Faith.”
ARTICLE III: CHURCH GOVERNMENT
The Scriptures teach that the Lord Jesus Christ is the Head over His Church (Eph. 1:22; Col. 1:18). Therefore, all authority within the church is subject to His Lordship and must function according to the guidelines set forth in the Word of God.
The government of Northwest Bible Church is to be carried out by the two offices set forth in the Scriptures: the elders and deacons.
Section 1: The Elders
A. This church will have as its highest authority a plurality of elders (Acts 14:23, 20:17). They are to be raised up by the Holy Spirit (Acts 20:28), acknowledged and appointed by the existing elders (Titus 1:5; Acts 14:23), and ordained during a regular worship service of the church.
B. Only men who meet the qualifications of an elder can be appointed to this office. Such qualifications are found in the following passages: 1 Tim. 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9; 1 Pet. 5:1-4. He should also pledge to uphold the doctrinal commitment set forth for the elders of this church.
C. An elder shall serve until: 1) he is removed due to sin or disqualification by a majority vote of the remaining elders (1 Tim. 5:19-20), 2) he resigns due to inability to fulfill the duties of the office, or 3) his death.
D. The duties of the elders are:
1) To guard the flock of God against false and destructive teachings and teachers (Acts 20:28-31; Titus 1:9).
2) To shepherd the church by providing leadership in the context of an exemplary life (1 Pet. 5:2-3).
3) To oversee the spiritual progress and direction of the church and manifest loving concern and interest in the lives of its members (Acts 20:28). The elders should also oversee the temporal
and material aspects of the life of the church (Acts 6:2-3), including the oversight of the finances (Acts 11:30).
4) To make sure that the church is being nourished and fed with the sound teaching of the Scriptures (1 Tim. 4:16; 2 Tim. 1:13; Titus 1:9) so that it remains doctrinally and morally pure.
5) To direct disciplinary action when necessary according to the principles set forth in the Scriptures: 1) private reproof of the sinning brother or sister, 2) if he does not listen, then take one or two more witnesses, 3) if he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church, and finally 4) if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as “a Gentile and a tax-gatherer” (Mt.18:15-18; 1 Tim. 5:20).
6) The elders shall also have the authority to represent the church in the buying or selling of any church equipment or property that they consider necessary or desirable for the ministry of the church. In the case of buying or selling real estate, the elders shall have the authority to purchase or sell real estate on behalf of the church, assuming that such decision to buy or sell is supported by a majority of the church members.
E. All of the decisions made by the elders shall be by the majority vote of all of the elders. When the elders deem it prudent, they shall make decisions after consulting with the church members, or they may choose to let the church members decide by a majority vote. The elders shall also be members of the Board of Trustees of the Northwest Bible Church corporation.
Section 2: Deacons
A. Deacons shall be appointed by the elders from among the members of the Church and ordained during a regular worship service of the Church.
B. Only those who meet the qualifications of a deacon as set forth in 1 Tim. 3:8-13 can be appointed to this office.
C. A deacon shall serve until: 1) he is removed by the elders due to sin or disqualification, 2) he resigns due to an inability to fulfill his duties, or 3) his death.
D. The duties of the deacons are to serve the church family and to assist the elders in any way that is needed (Acts 6:2-4).
Section 3: Pastor-Teacher(s)
A. The Position – The ministry of a Pastor-Teacher is a spiritual gift and function, not an office (Eph. 4:12-16). He should be an elder in the church and therefore bear an equal share of the responsibility and authority of that office along with the other elders. He will receive a salary.
B. Qualifications – The Pastor-Teacher should meet the qualifications of an elder and be able to effectively minister the Word of God to the church family. He should also be in agreement with the doctrinal commitment of the elders.
C. Duties – The Pastor-Teacher is primarily responsible for the preaching and teaching of the Scriptures within the church for the sanctification of the saints and the salvation of unbelievers.
D. The Pastor-Teacher shall serve until: 1) he is removed by a majority vote of the remaining elders due to sin or disqualification, 2) he resigns, or 3) his death.
Section 4: Membership
The only qualification for membership into Northwest Bible Church is that the individual manifest evidence that they are “in Christ”. This evidence should normally consist of the following: 1) a profession of faith in Jesus Christ as their Savior, 2) obedience to the sacrament of baptism, 3) a basic understanding of the Christian faith, and 4) a desire to live in accordance with the Word of God. All members should seek to utilize their spiritual gifts to the building up of the body of Christ (Eph. 4:12). Members can also participate in decision-making when called upon by the elders (Acts 6:3).
ARTICLE IV: ORDINANCES
Northwest Bible Church recognizes the importance of two ordinances: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. All Christians should be baptized in obedience to the Scriptures and thus publicly proclaim their faith in Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. The Lord’s Supper is regularly provided for the church family and all members are strongly encouraged to participate in accordance with our Lord’s loving commandment, “Do this in remembrance of Me” (1 Cor. 11:24). Any believer in good standing is also invited to partake of the elements.
ARTICLE V: MARRIAGE
Northwest Bible Church believes that marriage, as stated in the Bible, is a covenant relationship made before God, and is only to be between one man and one woman. We believe that polygamy, homosexual relationships or any other sexual relationships that do not conform to the biblical standard of one man and one woman in covenant marriage is contrary to the teachings of the Bible. Northwest Bible Church does not perform any marriage ceremonies that do not conform to the biblical pattern stated above, nor are our facilities to be used for such a ceremony.
(The elders approved amending the By-Laws to include this article on biblical marriage on July 15, 2014).
ARTICLE VI: AMENDMENTS
This set of By-Laws may be amended at any time and in any way by a majority vote of the elders.
SOLI DEO GLORIA