Proposed Revised Constitution – May 22, 2016

CONSTITUTION

 

PREAMBLE

We declare and establish this Constitution to preserve and secure the principles of our faith, and to govern the body in an orderly manner. This Constitution will preserve the liberties of each individual church member and the freedom of action of this body in its relationship to other churches.

 

ARTICLE I – NAME AND LOCATION

This body shall be known as Bannockburn Baptist Church of Austin, Texas. The church is located in various sites throughout Central Texas.

 

ARTICLE II – MISSION

The mission of Bannockburn Baptist Church is to guide people to become fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ.

 

ARTICLE III – STRATEGY

The mission of Bannockburn Baptist Church is carried out through four strategies that manifest the Great Commission found in Matthew 28:18-20. In this passage, Jesus told his disciples to “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, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you.” The strategies that reflect the uniqueness of this local body are:

  1. Reach – reaching people with the Gospel,
  2. Connect – connecting them into the local Body of believers,
  3. Equip – equipping them to grow in their faith and understanding of God’s Word, and
  4. Go – going locally, nationally and into all the world on mission.

 

ARTICLE IV – FOUNDATIONAL STATEMENTS OF FAITH

We ascribe to the full statement found in the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message. The following statements summarize the primary tenets of our faith:

 

The Bible:

The Bible, though written by men, was supernaturally inspired by God. It is therefore inerrant and infallible.

 

The Trinity:

There is one and only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.

 

Sin:

Adam, the first man, willfully disobeyed God, bringing sin and death into the world. As a result, every person is born a sinner, which is evidenced in their willful acts of sin; and they are therefore subject to eternal punishment, under the just condemnation of a holy God.

 

Salvation:

Christ offered Himself as a sacrifice by the appointment of the Father. He fulfilled the demands of God by His obedient life, died on the cross in full substitution and payment for the sins of all, was buried, and on the third day He arose bodily from the dead. Therefore, salvation comes through repentance of sin and by faith alone in Him as Savior. The believer is declared righteous, born again by the Holy Spirit, turned from sin, and assured of eternal security in heaven.

 

The Church:

The body of Christ on earth exists to continue the ministry that Jesus started. We exist as a local congregation that is a part of the overall body of Christ-followers in Central Texas, and of the universal Church around the world. This local assembly of baptized believers, under the discipline of the Word of God and the lordship of Christ, is organized to carry out the commission to evangelize, to teach, and to administer the ordinances of believer’s baptism and the Lord’s table.

 

Creation:

All things were created by God. Angels were created as ministering agents,
though some, under the leadership of Satan, fell from their sinless state to become agents of evil. The universe was created in six days and is continuously sustained by God, thus it both reflects His glory and reveals His truth. Human beings were not evolved, but directly created in the very image of God. As reasoning moral agents, they are responsible under God for understanding and governing themselves and the world.

 

The Return of Christ:

The return of Christ for all believers is imminent. The unsaved will then be raised and judged according to their works and separated forever from God in hell. The saved, having been raised, will live forever in fellowship with God in heaven.

 

Marriage, Sexuality and Divorce:

We believe that the term ‘marriage’ has only one meaning and that is marriage sanctioned by God which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. Therefore, we consider the ceremonial union of a man and a woman in holy matrimony an act of worship. We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. 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, such as adultery, fornication, homosexuality, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography, or disagreement with one’s biological sex, or any attempt to change one’s sex, is sinful and offensive to God.

The Scriptures declare divorce to be a sin. It is forbidden, except in cases of marital infidelity. The Church, therefore, should not counsel or encourage divorce. However, the Church must also demonstrate the grace of redemption through Jesus Christ, and thus divorced or remarried persons shall be extended the same grace which all believers share.

We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. There is a difference between temptation and unrepented sin. Jesus was tempted in all ways as we are, yet He never sinned. Members, employees, volunteers and attendees of this church wrestling with all manner of sexual temptation will find us ready to point them to Jesus and join with them to fight for their obedience to Christ. Jesus called the weary and heavy-laden to Himself. As a church desiring to follow Christ fully, Bannockburn will be a safe place for men and women fighting sexual temptations of all kinds. For those fighting temptation and repenting of sin, the church will provide love, care and direction. We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of the Church.

We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of the church as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by the church in any capacity, as well as all members of the church, should abide by and agree to this Statement on Marriage, Sexuality and Divorce, and conduct themselves accordingly.

The church’s Statement on Marriage, Sexuality and Divorce is based upon God’s will for human life as conveyed to us through the Scriptures, upon which this church has been founded and anchored. This Statement on Marriage, Sexuality and Divorce shall not be subject to change through popular vote; referendum; prevailing opinion of Members or the general public; influence of or interpretation by any government authority, agency, or official action; or legal developments on the local, state, or federal level.

 

The Family:

God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. It is composed of persons related to one another by marriage, blood, or adoption. Children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord. Parents are to demonstrate to their children God’s pattern for marriage. Parents are to teach their children spiritual and moral values and to lead them, through consistent lifestyle example and loving discipline, to make choices based on biblical truth. Children are to honor and obey their parents.

 

ARTICLE V – CHURCH COVENANT

Having been led by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord and, on the profession of our faith, having been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we do now, in the presence of God, and this assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into covenant with one another as one body in Christ.

We covenant, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian love; to strive for the advancement of this church, in knowledge, holiness, and comfort; to promote its prosperity and spirituality; to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline, and doctrines; to contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor, and the spread of the gospel through all nations.

We covenant to maintain family and private devotions; to diligently educate our children in the Christian faith; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; to walk circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements, and exemplary in our deportment; to avoid all sins of the flesh; to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior; to abstain from any behavior that may diminish our Christian witness or may cause a weaker brother or sister to stumble; and to abstain from the abuse of harmful substances.

We covenant to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember one another in prayer; to aid one another in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian sympathy in feeling and Christian courtesy in speech; to be slow to take offense but always ready for reconciliation and mindful of the rules of our Savior to secure it without delay.

We covenant that if we leave this church, we will, as soon as possible, unite with another church where we can carry out our biblical responsibilities as believers.

 

ARTICLE VI – ORDINANCES

We believe that baptism by immersion symbolizes that a person has identified with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Baptism is a public proclamation that a person has trusted Jesus Christ alone for salvation, has received forgiveness of sin, and has been reconciled to God.

We believe that the Lord’s Supper commemorates the death of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross and the price He paid with His body and blood, a final sacrifice for our sin.

 

ARTICLE VII – CHURCH AFFILIATIONS AND CHRISTIAN RELATIONSHIPS

The government of this church is vested in the body of believers who compose it, each member having equality of rights, with the majority bearing rule except as set forth specifically by the Bylaws. It is subject to the control of no other ecclesiastical body, but it recognizes and sustains the obligations of mutual counsel and cooperation which are common among Baptist churches. Insofar as is practical, this church will cooperate with and support the association and state convention affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.

 

ARTICLE VIII – AMENDMENTS

Proposed amendments to the Constitution may be submitted to the Trustees. Upon majority approval of the Trustees, the proposed amendments shall be presented to the church.

Proposed amendments shall be made available and notice of the special business meeting shall be publicized at least thirty (30) days before the election shall be held. Questions or concerns are encouraged to be presented in writing to the Pastor or one or more of the Trustees.

Proposed amendments will be considered in a special business meeting called for that purpose and approval shall be by written ballot and shall require an affirmative vote of three-fourths (3/4) of the qualified voting members present (including absentee ballots per BBC Bylaws §1.4.3 and §1.4.4).

 

ARTICLE IX – EFFECTS AND DATE OF ADOPTION

This Amended and Restated Constitution shall become effective immediately following the adoption of this Constitution by the church and shall supersede and take effect in lieu of any Constitution in effect prior to that time.

 

Ten-Year Document Change History

  • June, 2016
  • January, 2013
  • June, 2010
  • May, 2006