Constitution and Bylaws of the Jubilee Bible Church
Preamble: We, the members of Jubilee Bible Church, do ordain and establish the following Constitution to which we voluntarily and solemnly submit ourselves.
ARTICLE I: Name
The name of this church is Jubilee Bible Church. The word “church” as used in this Constitution will refer to Jubilee Bible Church, whereas the word “Church” will refer to the universal body and bride of Christ.
ARTICLE II: Purpose
Our Mission: Helping people encounter Jesus and be radically changed by Him.
Our Vision: To become loving believers who passionately reach others for Jesus.
Core Values and Core Beliefs:
We believe God is the holy, just, loving and eternal Creator of all things.
Therefore, we will live with an eternal perspective devoted to loving and obeying Him.
We believe all people are separated from God by sin and unable to save themselves.
Therefore we will acknowledge our need for a Savior and help others recognize their need.
We believe Jesus is God’s Son, whose sinless life, death, and resurrection provides the only rescue from sin.
Therefore we will live out our faith in Jesus with words and actions as we share Him through relationships.
We believe God’s Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin and empowers all who believe in Jesus as their Savior to live for God.
Therefore we will submit to His transforming power resulting in godly love that gets noticed.
We believe the Bible is the true, inspired Word of God given to reveal who God is, His plan for salvation and instruction for life.
Therefore we will study His Word to know, love and obey God more and help others discover its truth.
We believe the Church exists to bring God glory and to help all people become maturing followers of Jesus.
Therefore we will cultivate a community to glorify God by providing a loving environment to grow in relationship with Him.
We believe worship is glorifying God through a life lived for Him.
Therefore we will celebrate His greatness in all circumstances and live enthusiastically for Him
We believe prayer is communicating with God for His glory, seeking His will and growing our relationship with Him.
Therefore we will bring all to God with praise and thanksgiving, knowing He cares for us.
ARTICLE III: Authority
The Board of Elders is the governing body of this church and will be considered the Board of Directors for legal purposes.
ARTICLE IV: Incorporation
To implement the church’s purpose legally, the church is incorporated under the laws of the State of Illinois, so that it may own, provide and/or maintain a place of worship (including suitable real estate and buildings), receive, hold and disburse gifts, bequests and funds, and/or do all and sundry things necessary or incident to carry on such purpose. Jubilee Bible Church will not conduct any activities that are or would be inconsistent with its status as a church as that term is defined for purposes of Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
ARTICLE V: Membership
Section 1 – Qualifications for Membership
To qualify for membership in Jubilee Bible Church, a person must be a believer in Jesus Christ, who has been baptized, in obedience to Christ. Each member must agree to submit to the teaching of scripture as expressed in the Statement of Faith and promise to keep the commitments expressed in the Church Covenant. The elders shall be responsible for determining each person’s qualification for membership.
Section 2 – Admission of Members
To be admitted into church membership, applicants must complete the requirements for membership as specified by the Elders and meet for an interview with one or more Elders or their representatives.
Section 3: Removal from Membership
Membership may be terminated in one of three ways:
A. Members’ Request. Members can request removal from or transfer of membership by informing the Elders.
B. Elders’ Action. The Elders may remove from membership any member who (i) departs from his previously-expressed agreement with the Statement of Faith and/or Church Covenant, (ii) gives evidence of a continued, unrepentant departure from biblical morality including verbal sins and divisiveness, or (iii) clearly manifests disinterest and inactivity in the life of the church. Removal from membership does not constitute church discipline and does not require the four steps of Matthew 18, and those who are removed from membership will be allowed to attend the church as long as they repent of (i)-(iii) above. The Elders may restore their membership when they repent and meet clearly delineated benchmarks as set for them.
C. Church Discipline. The purpose of church discipline is to affect a return to a biblical standard of conduct and doctrine in a member who errs (Galatians 6:1) to maintain purity in the local church (1 Corinthians 5:6) and to deter sin (1 Timothy 5:20).
Any member of this church who teaches or insists on holding false doctrine contrary to, but not limited to, the Statement of Faith, and persistently conducts himself or herself in a manner inconsistent with biblical teaching, or who persists in disturbing the unity or peace of the church may be dealt with as follows, according to Matthew 18:15-18:
1. It is the duty of any and every member of this church who has knowledge of an erring member’s heresy or misconduct to warn and correct the erring member in private, seeking his or her repentance and restoration. This step is to be taken by the rank-and-file attenders of the church and is not the responsibility of the leadership at this point.
2. If the erring member does not heed this private warning, the warning member will again go to the erring member accompanied by one or two other members as witnesses to warn and correct, encouraging the wayward to repent and seek restoration.
3. If the erring member still refuses to heed the warning, the matter will be brought to the attention of the Elders, who, upon careful and prayerful investigation, will tell it to the church, encouraging the congregation to pray for the repentance and restoration of the erring member.
4. If the erring member refuses to heed the warnings of the Elders and the church, he or she will be dismissed from the church pursuant to the Scriptures and treated as an unbeliever. There will be no appeal of the discipline process or the dismissal to any court. The congregation will be encouraged to pray for the repentance and restoration of the erring member.
Section 4: Non-member Participation
Believers in Jesus Christ who attend the church but do not become members are welcomed in all public worship, praise, and fellowship. Lack of membership would, however, limit those persons from (i) holding any elected church office, (ii) speaking in a business meeting unless authorized by the Elders to do so, and (iii) from teaching or leading on a regular basis in roles usually reserved for members. Non-members participating in ministries will comply with all guidelines and policies of those ministries. The Elders will determine any other limits based upon specific situations. Attendance by non-members indicates implied consent in all matters related to the leadership of the church by the Elders and their representatives, and related to church discipline. A non-member can be taken through church discipline.
ARTICLE VI: Church Leadership
Section 1. Church leadership summary
Jesus Christ is the head of His Church. Under Him, the church is ruled by Elders (1 Tim 5:17). Scripture presents deacons as a second office. The notable difference between these two offices is that an Elder must be able to teach, to defend the church against heretics and those who seek to harm the health and purity of the church, and to exhort with sound doctrine (1 Tim 3:2; Titus 1:9).
Elders will have the responsibility for the general oversight of the church in all its various areas and ministries.
Deacons serve the church by filling particular areas of need that will assist the Elders so they can perform their duties. Under the authority of the Elders, Deacons will provide oversight for a wide variety of ministries.
The ministerial staff, under the direction of the Elders, will be responsible for the day-to-day operation of the church, including the administration of specific ministries. They will work with the Elder and Deacons to provide leadership and expertise for the entire congregation that includes identifying, selecting, and training volunteer ministry workers.
Section 2. Elders
The qualifications for Elders are set out in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9.
A. The Biblical Roles of the Elder
1. Shepherd the flock (I Peter 5:2)
2. Lead through example (I Peter 5:3)
3. Teach and exhort (I Timothy 3:2)
4. Refute those who contradict truth (Titus 1:9)
5. Oversee the church of God (Acts 20:28)
6. Pray for the sick (James 5:14-15)
B. The Duties of the Elder
The Elders will oversee the following:
1. Examining and instructing prospective members;
2. Examining and recommending candidates for offices and positions;
3. The work of the Deacons, Boards, staff, committees, and appointed church agents;
4. Worship services;
5. The ordinances of baptism and communion;
6. Equipping the membership for the work of the ministry;
7. Maintaining sound doctrine and practice;
8. Providing vision for the teaching programs;
9. Admonishing and correcting error, including church discipline;
10. Coordinating and promoting the ministries of the church;
11. Affirming of church policies;
12. Mobilizing the church for world missions;
13. Visiting the sick and praying for the physical and spiritual well-being of the members;
14. Reviewing the membership list, at minimum, once per year;
15. Ensuring that all who minister the Word to the congregation, including outside speakers, share our fundamental convictions;
16. Assuming the responsibilities of the Senior Pastor in the event of his absence or incapacity, any of which can be delegated;
17. Conducting an annual review of all paid staff, and
18. Appointing the church clerk and moderator annually.
C. The Elders may establish ministry positions or committees to assist them in fulfilling their responsibilities and determine the process in selecting their constituencies.
D. The Elders may also propose changes in staff including new paid positions with the input of the Deacons.
E. The Senior Pastor automatically is an Elder. Other members of the ministerial staff are not automatically Elders but are not excluded from being considered for the position of Elder. No Elder will hold the office of Deacon during his tenure as an Elder.
F. The Elders will have general input into the annual budget and must agree with the Deacons on the budget (with the exception of their own salaries and benefits) prior to their presentation to the congregation.
G. The Elder Board will review the church membership at least annually. Upon action by the
Board of Elders, members will be removed from membership if the member has moved
from the community, has not attended any service in the church for at least six
consecutive months, or has not communicated with the church in that period provided he
has not been hindered by illness or disability.
H. The Elders will annually elect a chairman, vice-chair, secretary, and other positions as deemed necessary.
I. Number. The norm for the New Testament church was to have a plurality of teaching Elders in each church (Acts 14:23; 20:17; Titus 1:5). Therefore, the number of Elders will not be less than three, one of which is the Senior Pastor. Should there be less than 3 Elders, the remaining Elder(s) will become an equal member(s) of an ad hoc leadership team made up of 2 male members from the Deacon Board, selected by the Deacon Board with input from the remaining Elder(s). The Elder(s) will train potential Elders. Staff members may serve as Elders if they meet the qualifications and have congregational approval. Lay Elders will make up a majority of the Elder Board.
J. Election and Tenure
The process of selecting Elders will be as follows:
1. Elders will select men to be nominated to serve as Elders and will seek recommendations and involvement from the general membership in the nomination process. They will call for a period of prayer by the church to discern God’s men for service. The Elders must be mindful of the scriptural qualifications listed in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9 when they select nominees for the Elder board. Any member with reason to believe that a nominated candidate is unqualified for an office should express such concern to the elders. Members intending to speak in opposition to a candidate should express their objection to the elders as far in advance as possible prior to the relevant business meeting and vote of affirmation for nominated elders.
2. Candidates and their wives, if they are married, must be members of the church for at least one year and demonstrate an active involvement in the ministry of the church. The Elder nominees must conform to the biblical guidelines found in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9. They must be willing wholeheartedly to endorse, defend, and abide by the Statement of Faith of the church, and they, along with their wives, must be familiar with and enthusiastically supportive of the mission, vision, core values, and core beliefs of the church.
3. An indication of a nominee’s desire and aspiration (see 1 Tim 3:2) to serve as an Elder will be requested from the nominees.
4. Each nominee and, if married, his wife, will be screened by (i) completing a questionnaire related to the nominee’s scriptural qualifications and doctrine; and (ii) by an interview with the Elders. A nominee may disqualify himself before or during the screening process. The Elders, after consultation and explanation with the nominee, may decide not to recommend him to the church members.
5. Elder nominees will begin a training process determined by the Elder board. This process may involve times of instruction, interaction, projects, mission activity and assigned reading as means of preparing the nominee for service as an Elder. The training process may also include a time of examination by the Elders. The details will be determined by the members of the Elder board.
6. Approved nominees will be presented to the church members for a two-week examination period. Anyone having a just reason regarding why the nominee is not scripturally qualified must confront privately the nominee about the nominee’s real or perceived shortcoming in an effort to reconcile with or restore the nominee. If such a confrontation is ineffective, the individual must submit in writing his reservations about the nominee to the Chairman of the Elder Board. The Chairman and the person who has reservations about the nominee will talk directly with the nominee concerning the questioned area. The Elders will review the matter and decide if the nominee should be presented to the church for affirmation. Under no circumstances will accusations or concerns be entertained against a nominee in any public forum, whether a business meeting or any other setting.
7. Upon completion of the nominees’ training, completion of an acceptable application and other steps as required by the Elders, and following the two-week examination period, the congregation will be asked to approve the nominees by ballot as God’s men to serve the church as Elders. A nominee must receive affirmation by a ballot vote of at least two-thirds of the votes cast by the church members in a duly called meeting. In the case of the calling of a Senior Pastor who will be one of the Elders, the vote passes if 75% of the voting church members approve.
8. The Elders will be responsible for dismissing an Elder who has become contentious, has violated biblical morality including verbal sins and divisiveness, or who no longer holds to the Statement of Faith of the church. A two-thirds majority vote of the Elder Board will be sufficient to dismiss an Elder from the board, and if it is necessary to do this, it will take place without a congregational vote. The Senior Pastor will be a member of the Elder Board for the duration of his pastoral role with the church. Lay Elders must spend a period of at least one year off after serving two successive 3-year terms. Pastoral staff may serve as elders after congregational approval. Pastoral staff will be determined by the Senior Pastor and approved by the elders. The Pastoral Staff can serve perpetually with Senior Pastor recommendation and Elder Board affirmation every 3 years.
9. Elders are accountable to God and to one another. Individual Elders may choose to take a leave from active service due to personal, family, or job-related situations that warrant such a leave. Reinstatement to active service is by mutual agreement between the individual and the Elders and does not require congregational affirmation.
K. Discipline of Elders
The question of disciplining Elders is of serious consequence and can do irreparable damage to the witness and ministry of the church in the community. While the goal of discipline is always restoration, the discipline of an Elder is to be conducted along the lines dictated by 1 Timothy 5:19-20, but not Matthew 18 15-20, which are the steps for disciplining a regular church member. Specifically, in the case of serious sin as suggested by, but not limited to, those found in 1 Corinthians 5:9-11, the steps will be as follows. First, an accusation about an Elder must be brought in writing by two or more witnesses to one or more members of the Elder Board. Second, all or part of the Elder Board will carefully investigate the facts related to the accusation. Third, if the accusation is valid, the sinning Elder will be confronted by the entire board, and even if he repents, he will be publically rebuked before the entire church in keeping with the dictates of 1 Tim 5:19-20 which requires a public rebuke and the Elder will be removed from his office.
SECTION 3. Deacons
The Board of Deacons will consist of qualified men and women who will serve the church in practical ways. The qualifications of the office of Deacon are set out in 1 Timothy 3:8-13 and are similar to those of the Elders, with the exception that Deacons do not have to be able to teach in order to qualify for the office. These are spiritual men and women who are heavily involved in some of the practical ministries of the church under the authority and guidance of the Elders. If the male and female deacons are married, their spouses must attend church often, and they, along with the Deacons, must agree with the Statement of Faith, be in wholehearted agreement with and submission to the leadership provided by the Elders, and must be familiar with and heartily embrace the mission statement, vision statement, core values and core beliefs of the church.
A. The Duties of the Deacon
The duties of Deacons include, but are not restricted to, the following:
1. Leading the way in acts of mercy and care, visiting those in need, including the disbursement of benevolence funds;
2. Assisting the Elders by overseeing the maintenance of the physical plant of the church;
3. Showing hospitality regularly to members of the church family;
4. Supporting the work of the ministerial staff and Elders;
5. Encouraging and supporting the lay volunteers who do ministry, and
6. Assisting the Elders and Finances Team in administering the finances of the church, including working with the Elders and the Finances Team in preparing the annual budget.
C. The Deacons may annually elect a chairman, vice-chair, secretary, and other positions as deemed necessary.
The number of Deacons will be determined by the Deacons and the Elders on a needs basis and the number of qualified men and women available.
E. Election and Tenure
1. The Elders, with recommendations and input from the general membership, will nominate men and women to serve as Deacons. The Elders will solicit input from the Deacons regarding nominees as well. Those nominated must be a member of the church for at least one year, and have demonstrated an active involvement in the ministry of church. Any member with reason to believe that a nominated candidate is unqualified for the office should express such concern to the elders. Members intending to speak in opposition to a candidate should express their objection to the elders as far in advance as possible prior to the relevant business meeting and vote of affirmation for nominated deacons.
2. They shall be elected to serve one 2-year term with a maximum of 2 consecutive terms, after which they must take one year off. They must be nominated for each term.
3. Screening of the nominees will take place by means of an interview by the Elders. A nominee may disqualify himself or herself before or during the screening process. The Elders, after consultation and explanation with the nominee, may decide not to recommend an individual to the church members.
4. Nominees will be presented to the church members by the Elders for a two-week period in which any member can formally object in writing to the Elders regarding a nominee serving as Deacon due to lack of adherence to scriptural qualifications. After the two-week period the Elders will affirm the qualified nominees as Deacons.
5. Deacons are responsible to keep themselves spiritually accountable. At times, spiritual accountability may involve Elder participation.
G. Discipline of Deacons
While the goal of discipline is restoration, the Elders, after due biblical process of discipline (Matthew 18:15-19; 1 Corinthians 5:2-13; 2 Thessalonians 3:6, 11-15; Galatians 6:1), may remove a Deacon who (i) departs from his or her previously expressed agreement with the Doctrinal Statement, (ii) evidences a continued, unrepentant departure from biblical morality including verbal sins or divisiveness, or (iii) clearly manifests disinterest and inactivity in the life of the church. If determined that a dismissal is necessary, the issue will be brought before the Deacons by the Elders. A Deacon may be dismissed by a two-thirds majority vote of the Elder Board. The Elders will then communicate their decision to the Deacon Board, then the church, and they will convey to the body the reasons for the dismissal of the Deacon.
Section 4. Senior Pastor
1. The Senior Pastor is an Elder; the first among equals leading in the biblical roles and duties of the Elders.
2. He will have primary responsibility for the biblical preaching and teaching in all services through prayer, preparation, and study.
3. The Senior Pastor will serve ex-officio on all boards and committees or delegate that right to another Elder. He will have the privilege of choosing which boards or committee functions he desires to attend. He is given full voice and vote on the committees and their meetings whenever he attends.
B. Calling Procedures
1. The Elders will function as the search committee for a Senior Pastor. They may engage in any process they wish but the final shape of the process and selection of a pastoral candidate rests with them.
2. Elders will present one candidate at a time to the church for its consideration. The candidate must fill the pulpit at least one service before he can be recommended by the Elders to the church as a candidate.
3. The candidate may be extended a call to become the Senior Pastor if he has received affirmation by a ballot vote of at least 75% of the ballots cast by the voting church members in a duly called meeting.
The Senior Pastor is called for an indefinite term of service.
Only the Elder Board can call for a vote of confidence for the Senior Pastor. If the Elders call for a vote of confidence regarding the Senior Pastor, he will be reaffirmed by a ballot vote of at least 75% of the ballots cast by the voting church members in a duly called meeting with notification of the membership provided two weeks in advance of the meeting.
Section 5: Pastoral Staff
Pastoral staff may be added at the discretion of the Board of Elders, who will conduct the search and hire such individuals as they deem qualified for a position. The pastoral staff will be accountable ultimately to God but practically to the Board of Elders, with day-to-day accountability and oversight exercised by the Senior Pastor. In the event that termination of a pastoral staff member becomes necessary, it will be conducted by the Board of Elders including the Senior Pastor.
Section 6. Congregation
Though governed by Elders and served by Deacons, the church members, subject to the other provisions in this Constitution, will govern in the following church matters. These matters require a ballot vote of at least two-thirds majority of the ballots cast by the voting church members, except in the case of the selection of a Senior Pastor which requires an approval of 75% of the voting active membership. Such business will be transacted in a duly called meeting preceded by two-weeks’ notice:
A. Approval of a candidate to become the Senior Pastor.
B. Approval of an Elder nominee.
C. Approval of an annual budget.
D. Approval for buying or selling real estate.
E. Approval of an amendment to this Constitution.
Section 7. Finance Team
A. Its Responsibilities and Makeup.
The Finance Team will administer the financial matters of the church under the
supervision of the Elders. The team will consist of at least one Elder, one Deacon, one
other member from the congregation and any others deemed necessary by the Elders. The
Finance Team will present regular updates to the membership on the status of the
church’s finances, and keep the Elders and Deacons fully and frequently informed on
important matters related to the budget.
B. Formulation and Approval of the Annual Budget.
Each year, the Elders, Deacons and Finance Team will construct a general itemized budget. The vocational Elders will not determine their own salaries and benefits, but the lay Elders will consider their needs when determining what the salaries of the vocational Elders will be. The budget will be presented to the congregation at least two weeks before the Annual Meeting and at least one information meeting will be held to answer thoroughly and exhaustively all questions and address concerns members may have about the proposed budget. If those concerns warrant adjustment to the budget, then those adjustments will be made, a new budget submitted to the church for consideration with two weeks’ notice made to the membership, and another information meeting conducted.
No money will be solicited by or on behalf of the church or any of its ministries without the approval of the Elders.
ARTICLE VII. Church Meetings
Section 1. Fiscal Year
The fiscal year will be from July 1 to June 30.
Section 2. Business Meetings
A. The Annual Business Meeting. This meeting is for the purpose of, but not necessarily limited to, the affirmation of elders, presentation of deacons and the adoption of the budget for the coming fiscal year. This meeting will be held prior to July 1 on a date most convenient with the church calendar.
B. Special Meetings. The Pastor or the Board of Elders may call special meetings. The time and place of such meetings and nature of the business to be acted upon will be announced to the church at least two weeks prior to the scheduled meeting.
C. Quorum. For all regular business meetings, 25% of the eligible voting members shall constitute a quorum. Active members who are 18 years of age or older will have voting rights. The Board of Elders will determine if absentee ballots will be made available for any business meeting. All absentee ballots received will count toward calculating all quorum requirements.
D. Rules of Order. Robert’s Rules of Order may be utilized in business matters when congregational input is necessary, but the main rule of business meetings is found in 1 Corinthians 14:40, that all things must be done decently and in order.
ARTICLE VIII: Property and Assets
A. The church will have the power to receive, either by gift or purchase, and so hold such real, personal, or mixed property as is authorized by the laws of the State of Illinois and is deemed necessary for the functioning of the church, and will have the power to dispose of such property by mortgage, bill of sale, deed, or otherwise. All property will be held in the name of the church.
B. In case of division of the church caused by conflict (from which we pray God by His mercy to preserve us), all property and assets of the church will belong to those who abide by its Constitution.
C. In case of dissolution of the church organization, the property and all assets will be sold, either through private or public sale. From the proceeds, the Elders will ensure, first, that all current and long term obligations of the church will be paid. Second, all remaining funds will be directed to such one or more Christian organizations qualified under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code, for the benefit of the church’s supported missionaries and/or such other Christian endeavors as the Elders will determine. The church will be considered dissolved if so decided by the Elders, or when the church has not held an annual meeting for three years, or when less than six members remain.
ARTICLE IX: Amendments
The Constitution or Articles of Incorporation of this church may be amended by a two-thirds majority of the members voting, provided that both the text of such an amendment and the basis for its consideration have been given to all members at least two weeks in advance of any meeting at which such a proposal will be considered or voted upon.
ARTICLE X: Indemnification
Jubilee Bible Church will indemnify and hold harmless any and all officers, directors, Elders, Ministers, Pastors, and business administrators for any expenses actually and necessarily incurred in connection with any action, suit or proceeding against said officers, directors, Elders, Ministers, Pastors, and business administrators. This indemnification will include costs for attorney fees. The indemnification will occur as the expenses are incurred and in advance of the final disposition of the action, suit or proceeding, on receipt of the officers, directors, Elders, Ministers, Pastors, or business administrators’ promise: (1) to repay the amount advanced it if proved by clear and convincing evidence in court that the officers’, directors’, Elders’, Ministers’, Pastors’, and business administrators’ conduct involved a deliberate intent to injure the corporation’s best interests, (2) to reasonably cooperate with the corporation in connection with the action, suit or proceeding.
This indemnification will be available to any officer, director, Elder, Minister, Pastor, and/or business administrator which is made or thereafter to be made a part to any action, suit or proceeding because of the person’s relationship with the corporation. Persons who are officers, directors, Elders, Ministers, Pastors, and/or business administrators at the time of being made a party, or threatened with being made a party to any action, suit or proceeding, or were officers, directors, Elders, Ministers, Pastors, and/or business administrators will be allowed indemnification. Indemnification will also be available in criminal actions only if it is found that the officer, director, Elder, Minister, Pastor, or business administrator had no reasonable cause to believe that the subject acts were unlawful.
ARTICLE XI: Effectual Power of This Constitution
This Constitution will take effect immediately upon its ratification by two-thirds vote of the congregation. This Constitution will remain in force as presently formulated or as duly amended until this corporation is legally dissolved. This Constitution will not be suspended or abrogated.
ARTICLE XII: Confidentiality
No member will have the right to inspect the church records as to (i) the disciplining of any member, (ii) the hiring or firing of any employee, (iii) the need or problems of any member or employee, (iv) the financial contributions of any member, or (v) any other records which the Board of Elders may determine to be in the best interests of the church to keep confidential; except that as to item (v) above of this article, the congregation in any business meeting will have the right, by a majority of those members voting, to inspect any of such other records.
ARTICLE XIII: Gender, Marriage, 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 at birth is a rejection of the image of God within that person. We believe 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). Jubilee Bible Church will only conduct a marriage ceremony and recognize the marriage between a biological man and a biological woman. We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other (1 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. We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God (Matthew 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10). We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess 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 12:28-31; Luke 6:31). Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated.
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Jubilee Bible Church as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to Jubilee Bible Church members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Jubilee Bible Church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by the Scriptures and the doctrines of Jubilee Bible Church.