Fellowship Church at Plum Creek Constitution
The name of the organization shall be Fellowship Church at Plum Creek where we seek to experience real relationships with God, each other and our community.
The purpose of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek is to make disciples according to Matthew 28:19:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,”
The purpose of the church shall be accomplished through a lifegroup model according to Acts 2:42-47,
“And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.”
We corporately believe in the following statements of faith:
1. We believe in one God, Creator of all things, holy, infinitely perfect, and eternally existing in a loving unity of three distinctly divine Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Having limitless knowledge and sovereign power, God has graciously purposed from eternity to redeem a people for Himself and to make all things new for His own glory. (Deuteronomy 6:4, Galatians 4:4-5)
2. We believe that God has spoken in the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, through the words of human authors. As the verbally inspired Word of God, the Bible is without error and is the complete revelation of Himself. (2 Timothy 3:16, 1 Timothy 4:13)
3. We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image, but they sinned when tempted by Satan. In union with Adam, human beings are sinners by nature and by choice, alienated from God, and under His wrath. Only through God’s saving work in Jesus Christ can we be rescued, reconciled and renewed. (Psalms 51:5, Jeremiah 17:9)
4. We believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person in two natures. Jesus, the Messiah, was conceived through the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate. We believe that Jesus Christ, as our representative and substitute, shed His blood on the cross as the perfect, all-sufficient sacrifice for our sins. His atoning death and victorious resurrection constitute the only ground for salvation. (John 1:1, Heb 1:3, Heb 5:6, John 3:16, Romans 8)
5. We believe that the Holy Spirit, in all that He does, glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ. He is our deposit of salvation gifting us for the service of God. He also indwells, illuminates, guides, equips and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service.(John 14:16-17, Romans 8:27, 1 Corinthians 12)
6. We believe that the true church comprises all who have been justified by God’s grace through faith alone in Christ alone. They are united by the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ, of which He is the Head. The Lord Jesus mandated two ordinances, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, which visibly and tangibly express the gospel. Though they are not the means of salvation, when celebrated by the church in genuine faith, these ordinances confirm and nourish the believer.(Ephesians 3:10, Hebrews 10:25, Matthew 3:16-17)
7. We believe that God will raise the dead bodily and judge the world, assigning the unbeliever to condemnation and eternal conscious punishment and the believer to eternal joy with the Lord in heaven to the praise of His glorious grace.(John 14:2,1 Corinthians 2:7-9,Philippians 3:20-21)
8. We believe in marriage between one man and one woman, as set forth by the Lord in Genesis 2:24.
By-Laws and Policies
Article 1: Church Goals and Mission
With in Acts 2:42-47, we suppose six goals of the church to accomplish our mission of making disciples as listed below:
Goal 1: Fellowship – a call to a common participation in God’s purposes
- 1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.
- 1 Corinthians 1:9 God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Goal 2: Discipleship – a call to know and follow Jesus our Lord
- Luke 9:23-24 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.
- Luke 6:40 A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone when he is fully trained will be like his teacher.
Goal 3: Prayer – a call to faithfully communicate with our loving Father
- Philippians 4:6-7 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
- Psalms 69:13 But as for me, my prayer is to you, O LORD. At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love answer me in your saving faithfulness.
Goal 4: Ministry – a call to life-giving service to God and His people
- Acts 20:24 But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
- Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ,
Goal 5: Worship – a call to proclaim the majesty of our Creator
- John 4:24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
- Psalms 95:6 Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!
Goal 6: Evangelism – a call to make God known among the lost
- Matthew 9:37-38 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”
- Luke 19:10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
- Acts 4:12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
Article 2: Leadership
Christ is the head of the church and we, as Fellowship Church at Plum Creek, will follow His lead through the Holy Spirit remaining rooted in the scriptures. Beneath Christ, we will establish the following roles within the church:
Lead Pastor – The Lead Pastor is accountable first and foremost to God and secondly to the elders for the spiritual leading of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek.
Staff – The staff will consist of the paid staff of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek under the direction and lead of the Lead Pastor and Elders.
Elders – The Elders consists of men that commit to lead spiritually in the life of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek. These men aim to meet the criteria of Titus 1 and are subject to honor and discipline according to 1 Timothy 5:17-20. In the event of change of leadership, the Staff and Elders will function or assign someone to temporarily fulfill the Lead Pastor role. Details of the position of Elder are clarified in Article of Clarification 1 – Eldership at Fellowship Church at Plum Creek.
LIFEgroup Leaders – LIFEgroup leaders are the individual leaders of community groups that meet weekly in the life of the Fellowship Church at Plum Creek.
Leadership Team – The Leadership Team consists of all of the above mentioned roles along with temporary laymen and women from the church with specific knowledge or gifts to a particular circumstance.
Church Members – The church members consists of the believers in Christ at FellowshipChurch at Plum Creek call by God to be the body of Christ. As the body of Christ, we aim to encourage, reproof, challenge and exhort one another according to the Word of God.
Major changes within the body will flow from the Staff and Elders, to the Leadership Team followed by the Church Members of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek seeking unity in the Spirit.
Article 3: Family
Fellowship Church at Plum Creek believes in the family unit. The church will strive to make the family unit stronger: one man and one woman united together in marriage, the husband operating with the loving leadership of Christ, the wife operating as the bride of Christ (the church), and children honoring their father and mother. (Genesis 2:24, Ephesians 5)
Article 4: Affiliations
Fellowship Church at Plum Creek has voluntarily affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention of Texas, the General Convention of Texas and the Bluebonnet Baptist Association. The church also will seek harmonious relationships with other Bible believing churches and organizations to maintain and support the body of Christ as a whole.
Article 5: Membership and Discipline
Members of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek are those who have professed a saving faith in Jesus Christ, been scripturally baptized by immersion after salvation, have attended the Beginning/Membership class(es) and are not under active church discipline.
New members are received subject to the above by: 1) Profession of Faith and Baptism 2) Promise of Letter from a Bible believing church 3) Statement of Faith and a former scriptural baptism. Questions of membership may be resolved through the staff working with the individuals and elders.
Fellowship Church at Plum Creek believes in scriptural discipline when a member becomes out of fellowship with the body of Christ. Our heart is to restore them through the love of Matthew 18:15-20.
Matthew 18:15-20 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.”
We, Fellowship Church at Plum Creek, believe that scripture speaks clearly to actions of the flesh that hinder a right relationship to the Lord and His church, for example but not limited to:
Galatians 5:19-21 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Romans 13:13-14 Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.
Article 6: Dissolution
In the event that God chooses to dissolve Fellowship Church at Plum Creek, all the assets of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek shall be disseminated by the remaining staff and elders.
This constitution of Fellowship Church at Plum Creek supersedes and replaces all prior constitutions.
Article of Clarification 1
Eldership at Fellowship Church at Plum Creek
Reasons for Elder Led Leadership
Firstly, The Book of Acts illustrates an elder-led model for the early church with Christ as the Head, followed by Apostles and elders, then the church body of believers. (See Acts 14:23, Acts 15:22-23, Acts 20:17,28-32)
- Acts 14:23 And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed.
- Acts 20:28-32 Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears. And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
Secondly, the Scriptures give elders a greater responsibly for the spiritual well being of the flock. (See Hebrews 13:7, 17-18)
- Hebrews 13:7 Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.
- Hebrews 13:17-18 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. Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, desiring to act honorably in all things.
Elder Qualifications and Selection
Fellowship Church of Plum Creek will seek men who meet or exceed the qualifications of an elder or overseer found in 1 Timothy 3:1-7.
- 1 Timothy 3:1-7 The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.
The process for selecting Elders will hold to the new Testament model cited in detail below:
1) The Pastor or Lead Elder will begin the Elder selection process by nominating Elder Candidates. (Titus 1:5, Acts 14:23)
2) Candidates will be reviewed and prayerfully considered by the current Elders.
3) The Elders will recommend the candidate to the congregation for at time of prayer and consideration lasting a minimum of two weeks allowing any evidence that would disqualify an elder Candidate to surface and be considered. 1 Timothy 5:22-24
4) Candidates fulfilling the call of Titus 1 as determined by the current Elders and acceptance by the church body through evidence of good works instead of evidence against them will be considered an Elder.
5) Elders will be asked to serve the Fellowship Church at Plum Creek for 3 years, at which time, they could re-enter the nominating process.
Elder Charge and Responsibility
FellowshipChurch at Plum Creek believes the responsibility of an elder can be summed up under two roles: governing and teaching.
Governing will be defined as leadership through prayer over the souls of the flock(Hebrews 13:17, James 5:14), managing personal and church affairs(1 Timothy 3:4-5), and shepherding(Acts 20:28).
Teaching is expressed in 1 Timothy 5:17 “Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching,” as a specific role and responsibility of the elders.
Elder Charge and Discipline
FellowshipChurch at Plum Creek views the charge of the Elders as vital to the health of His body, the church. If an Elder displays conduct contrary to the qualifications or responsibilities discussed above, the other Elders are called to exercise discernment according to 1 Timothy 5:17-20.
- 1 Timothy 5:17-20 Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.” Do not admit a charge against an elder except on the evidence of two or three witnesses. As for those who persist in sin, rebuke them in the presence of all, so that the rest may stand in fear.