III. Articles of Faith and Rules of Decorum
Part Three: ARTICLES OF FAITH AND RULES OF DECORUM
Chapter 20. ARTICLES OF FAITH AND RULES OF DECORUM: FRIENDSHIP PRIMITIVE BAPTIST CHURCH
ARTICLE OF FAITH
1. We believe in only one true and living God, and that there is a Trinity of persons in the Godhead--the Father, Son and Holy Ghost-and yet these are not three Gods, but one God. John 1:1; 1 John 5:7.
2. That the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments as set forth in the King James Version of 1611, are the word of God, and the only rule of faith and practice. 2 Peter 1:21; Timothy 3:16.
3. In the fall of Adam, the imputation of his sin to his posterity, the corruption of human nature, and the impotency of man to recover himself by his own free will and ability. Romans 3:9-23, 5:12; John 6:44.
4. In the everlasting love of God to His people, and the eternal election of a definite number of the human race to grace and glory, and that there was a covenant of grace and redemption made between the Father and the Son before the world began, in which their salvation is secure and they in particular are redeemed. Ephesians 1:4; Romans 8:29-30.
5. That sinners are justified in the sight of God only by the righteousness of Christ imputed to them. Romans 5:19; 1 Corinthians 1:30; Romans 2:24, 4:4, 24.
6. That all of the chosen in Christ will be eventually called, regenerated, converted, sanctified, and supported by the Spirit and power of God, so they shall be preserved in grace and not one of them will be finally lost. 2 Timothy 1:9; John 10:27-30; Romans 8:29-30.
7. That good works are the fruits of faith and follow after justification and that they only justify us in the sight of men and angels and are evidences of our gracious state. Ephesians 2:10; Titus 2:14, 3:8.
8. That there will be a resurrection of the dead and general judgment and the happiness of the righteous and the punishment of the wicked will be eternal. John 5:28-29; Matthew 25:46; Daniel 12:2.
9. We believe the visible Church of Christ is a congregation of faithful members who have gained Christian fellowship with each other, and have given themselves up to the Lord and to one another, and have agreed to keep up godly discipline agreeable to the rules of the gospel. 1 Timothy 3:15; Matthew 16:18.
10. That Jesus Christ is the great Head of His Church and the only Lawgiver; and the government is with the body, and is the privilege of each individual; and that the discipline of the church is intended for the reclaiming of those Christians who walk disorderly, either in principle or practice, and must be faithfully kept up for God's glory and the peace and unity of the churches. 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Matthew 18:15, 28:30; Romans 16:17; 1 Corinthians 5:4-12; 2 Corinthians 6:4-18; 1 Thessalonians 3:6.
11. That water baptism and the Lord's Supper are ordinances of the gospel to be kept up until the Lord's second coming and to be administered only by orderly Baptist ministers regularly ordained. Mark 19; Romans 6:4; Matthew 28:20. We believe that feetwashing is an example and should be observed in connection with the Lord's Supper by all followers of Christ. John 13:1-17.
12. That true believers in Christ Jesus are the only subjects of baptism, and that immersion is the mode. Mark 16:16; Acts 8:37.
13. That none but baptized members have a right to commune at the Lord's table. Acts 2:41-42
14. That it is the duty of every heaven-born soul to become a member of the visible church, to make a public confession of his faith to be legally baptized so as to have a right to partake of the Lord's Supper at every legal opportunity during this life.
RULES OF DECORUM
1. It shall be the duty of all male members to attend conference meeting and failing to attend two successive conference meetings of the church they may be sent for by the church.
2. Weekday worship shall commence at 7:00 P. M. and Sunday worship at 10:30 A. M.
3. The Pastor or ministerial supply shall preside as moderator when present and in good order but if absent or in disorder the church shall choose a moderator pro tem.
4. Conference shall be opened by singing and prayer and business shall be taken up in the following order:
1 - Invite visiting Brethren and Sisters of our Faith and order to seat with the Church.
2 - Call for acknowledgments and dealings in gospel order.
3 - Inquire for reference.
4 - Open the door of the church for the reception of members.
5 - Take up the miscellaneous business.
5. There shall be a clerk to record the transactions of each conference and the minutes shall be read and approved by the church.
6. Every motion made and seconded shall be put to the church by the moderator unless the motion be withdrawn by the mover and the first motion made and seconded shall be first in order.
7. Every member speaking shall rise from his feet and address the moderator and shall not be disturbed unless he use unbecoming language or depart from the subject.
8. The members present shall be considered the church and the minority shall go with the church in all cases except where fellowship is involved which must be unanimous.
9. No member shall speak more than three times on the same subject without leave from the church.
10. The moderator shall speak in no case unless his seat be filled and vote only in case of a tie unless he be one of the body.
11. There shall be no whispering or idle talking in time of public debate and no reflection shall be made on the speaker.
12. No male member shall absent himself from conference without leave from the moderator.
13. The Communion and Feet Washing season for this church shall be May and September.
14. All members in order shall attend the Communion Services and take seats in order.
15. If any member violate these rules he shall be reproved by the moderator.
16. It shall be the duty of the church to furnish the necessary means for communion and feet washing.
17. That these rules and the articles of faith be publicly read twice in the year.
18. These rules may be altered and amended by a majority of the church in conference.
2 Samuel 21:10 (KJV)
And Rizpah the daughter of Aiah took sackcloth, and spread it for her upon the rock, from the beginning of harvest until water dropped upon them out of heaven, and suffered neither the birds of the air to rest on them by day, nor the beasts of the field by night.
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