CLEARVIEW BAPTIST CHURCH CONSTITUTION
(revised Sept 16, 2020)
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 shall preserve the liberties of each individual church member and the freedom of action of this body in its relation to other churches.
This body shall be presently known as ClearView Baptist Church, located at 537 Franklin Road, Franklin, Tennessee 37069.
II. STATEMENT OF FAITH
God is the all-knowing, all-powerful, ever-present creator of the universe. He is the one and only true and living God. He eternally exists in three inseparable persons; Father, Son and Holy Spirit, distinct in function, yet equal in substance. God’s character consists of attributes both unshared with his creation, such as his eternal nature and shared with his creation, such as mercy. God is deserving of creation’s worship and obedience. All creation is totally dependent upon Him.
God the Father
God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men.
Genesis 1:1; 2:7; Exodus 3:14; 6:2-3; 15:11ff.; 20:1ff.; Leviticus 22:2; Deuteronomy 6:4; 32:6; 1 Chronicles 29:10; Psalm 19:1-3; Isaiah 43:3,15; 64:8; Jeremiah 10:10; 17:13; Matthew 6:9ff.; 7:11; 23:9; 28:19; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Romans 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 11:6; 12:9; 1 Peter 1:17; 1 John 5:7.
Jesus is the Son of God, Savior of man, and Lord of all. He is fully man, yet has a sinless nature and lived a sinless life. Jesus is fully eternal God, yet humbled himself in obedience to the Father. Jesus demonstrated His obedience to the Father and love for mankind by dying on the cross, bearing the wrath of the Father against sinful man. He rose bodily from the grave and ascended to the right hand of the Father where He intercedes for His own. Jesus will return to redeem the church and execute final judgment.
Genesis 18:1ff.; Psalms 2:7ff.; 110:1ff.; Isaiah 7:14; Isaiah 53:1-12; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; 16:16,27; 17:5; 27; 28:1-6,19; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; 17:1-5, 21-22; 20:1-20,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 7:55-56; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3,34; 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2:2; 8:6; 15:1-8,24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:20; 3:11; 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22;2:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15; 7:14-28; 9:12-15,24-28; 12:2; 13:8; 1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 4:14-15;5:9; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 5:9-14; 12:10-11; 13:8; 19:16.
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit manifests God’s active presence in the world. The Holy Spirit secures every Christian until Christ returns. The Holy Spirit empowers for service, convicts and purifies of sin, and illuminates God’s will to His people. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church. All gifts continue through the Holy Spirit to the present day. The Holy Spirit is always verified through scripture.
Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Psalms 51:11; 139:7ff.; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 4:1; 12:28-32; 28:19; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18-19; 11:13;12:12; 24:49; John 4:24; 14:16-17,26; 15:26; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 4:31; 5:3; 6:3;7:55; 8:17,39; 10:44; 13:2; 15:28; 16:6; 19:1-6; Romans 8:9-11,14-16,26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16; 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:14; 3:16; Hebrews 9:8,14; 2 Peter1:21; 1 John 4:13; 5:6-7; Revelation 1:10; 22:17.
People are created in God’s image and for His glory, but are separated from God by their sin. People are the crowning work of God’s creation and are designed to enjoy a relationship with Him. God creates each person as male or female and these distinct genders together reflect the image and nature of God. People are born with a sin nature as a result of Adam’s sin, and are born into an environment inclined toward sin. People are unable to escape the wrath of God on their own. People’s inherited sin nature brings physical death, spiritual condemnation and eternal judgment in hell. We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other stage or condition from conception through natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life.
Genesis 1:26-30; 2:5,7,18-22; 3; 9:6; Psalms 1; 8:3-6; 32:1-5; 51:5; 139; Isaiah 6:5; Jeremiah 17:5; Matthew 16:26; Acts 17:26-31; Romans 1:19-32; 3:10-18,23; 5:6,12,19;6:6; 7:14-25; 8:14-18,29; 1 Corinthians 1:21-31; 15:19,21-22; Ephesians 2:1-22; Colossians 1:21-22; 3:9-11.
Salvation is a free gift from God that cannot be earned. Salvation requires repentance of sin through the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Salvation begins with the confession of Christ alone as Lord, and belief in His death and resurrection. Salvation comes to fruition in the eternal dwelling with God.
Genesis 3:15; Exodus 3:14-17; 6:2-8; Matthew 1:21; 4:17; 16:21-26; 27:22-28:6; Luke 1:68-69; 2:28-32; John 1:11-14,29; 3:3-21,36; 5:24; 10:9,28-29; 15:1-16; 17:17; Acts 2:21; 4:12; 15:11; 16:30-31; 17:30-31; 20:32; Romans 1:16-18; 2:4; 3:23-25; 4:3ff.; 5:8-10; 6:1-23; 8:1-18,29-39; 10:9-10,13; 13:11-14; 1 Corinthians 1:18,30; 6:19-20; 15:10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-20; Galatians 2:20; 3:13; 5:22-25; 6:15; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-22; 4:11-16; Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 1:9-22; 3:1ff.; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 2 Timothy 1:12; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 2:1-3; 5:8-9; 9:24-28; 11:1-12:8,14; James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:2-23; 1 John 1:6-2:11; Revelation 3:20; 21:1-22:5.
The Bible is the written word of God, testifying to the living word of God, Jesus Christ. The Bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit and was written by men. The Bible is authoritative as God’s revelation and is sufficient for all matters of belief and behavior. The Bible is accurate when it is true to its original writing.
Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-2; 17:19; Joshua 8:34; Psalms 19:7-10;119:11,89,105,140; Isaiah 34:16; 40:8; Jeremiah 15:16; 36:1-32; Matthew 5:17-18; 22:29; Luke 21:33; 24:44-46; John 5:39; 16:13-15; 17:17; Acts 2:16ff.; 17:11; Romans 15:4; 16:25-26; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 1:1-2; 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21.
The Church is God’s people, partnering in God’s redemptive mission. The Church is discipleship pursued in Christian community. The Church is the visible and verbal expression of the gospel in the world. The Church is governed by Christ and practices the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. The Church is the body of Christ expressed as local congregations and as a universal community.
Matthew 16:15-19; 18:15-20; Acts 2:41-42,47; 5:11-14; 6:3-6; 13:1-3; 14:23,27; 15:1-30;16:5; 20:28; Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4-5; 7:17; 9:13-14; 12; Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 3:8-11,21; 5:22-32; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; 1 Timothy 2:9-14;3:1-15; 4:14; Hebrews 11:39-40; 1 Peter 5:1-4; Revelation 2-3; 21:2-3.
The Great Commission
The Great Commission is the responsibility of all believers to share their faith with others. It is about making disciples, which is the full commitment of one’s life to Christ. The Great Commission is empowered by the Holy Spirit and is to be followed locally, regionally, and globally.
Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 6:1-8; Matthew 9:37-38; 10:5-15; 13:18-30, 37-43;16:19; 22:9-10; 24:14; 28:18-20; Luke 10:1-18; 24:46-53; John 14:11-12; 15:7-8,16;17:15; 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2; 8:26-40; 10:42-48; 13:2-3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 3:1-11; 1 Thessalonians 1:8; 2 Timothy 4:5; Hebrews 2:1-3; 11:39-12:2; 1 Peter 2:4-10;Revelation 22:17.
The Christian and the Social Order
All Christians are under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ supreme in our own lives and in human society. In the spirit of Christ, Christians should oppose racism, every form of greed, selfishness, and vice, and all forms of sexual immorality, including adultery, fornication, cohabitation, homosexuality, attempts to alter one’s gender and the use of pornography. We should work to provide for the orphaned, the needy, the abused, the aged, the helpless, and the sick. We should speak on behalf of the unborn and contend for the sanctity of all human life from conception to natural death.
Exodus 20:3-17; Leviticus 6:2-5; Deuteronomy 10:12; 27:17; Psalm 101:5; Micah 6:8; Zechariah 8:16; Matthew 5:13-16,43-48; 22:36-40; 25:35; Mark 1:29-34; 2:3ff.; 10:21; Luke 4:18-21; 10:27-37; 20:25; John 15:12; 17:15; Romans 12–14; 1Corinthians 5:9-10; 6:1-7; 7:20-24; 10:23-11:1; Galatians 3:26-28; Ephesians 6:5-9; Colossians 3:12-17; 1 Thessalonians 3:12; Philemon; James 1:27; 2:8.
God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God’s image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to His people. 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.
Marriage, Gender, and Sexuality
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 and as part of God’s good creation prior to the entry of sin into the world (Genesis 2:18-25). We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between one man and one 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 one man and one woman. (1 Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4).
We believe that any form of sexual immorality, including, but not limited to, lust, fornication, adultery, cohabitation prior to marriage, the use or promulgation of pornography, pedophilia, homosexual conduct, bisexual conduct, polygamy, polyamory, bestiality, or incest, is sinful and offensive to God. (Matthew 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9- 10).
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 is a rejection of the image of God within that person. We recognize that there are very rare but diagnosable medical conditions (i.e., intersex, etc.) where one’s sex may be indeterminable genetically or biologically at birth, and that such conditions require the utmost sensitivity, care, and qualified medical assistance. Beyond that, we believe that an individual’s confusion about his or her sex or gender is one of the many consequences of living in a fallen world marred by sin and that to seek to alter one’s biological sex or gender through surgical, pharmacological, or other means is sinful and offensive to God. We believe that such situations call for pastorally sensitive care and Biblically faithful counseling as necessary in each situation.
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of ClearView as a local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to its members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by ClearView in any capacity agree to and abide by this Statement of Faith. (Matthew 5:16; Phillipians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22.)
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 and are not in accord with Scripture nor the sincere beliefs of ClearView. We do not believe that calling people to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ constitutes hateful or harassing behavior.
Because God has ordained marriage and defined it as the covenant relationship between a man, a woman, and Himself, ClearView will only recognize marriages between a biological man and a biological woman. In accordance with this Biblical standard, no ClearView staff member is permitted to officiate or actively participate in any wedding that is not a marriage between one man and one woman. Finally, the facilities and property of ClearView shall only host weddings between one man and one woman.
Genesis 1:26-28; 2:15-25; 3:1-20; Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Joshua 24:15; 1 Samuel 1:26-28; Psalms 51:5; 78:1-8; 127; 128; 139:13-16; Proverbs 1:8; 5:15-20; 6:20-22; 12:4; 13:24; 14:1; 17:6; 18:22; 22:6,15; 23:13-14; 24:3; 29:15,17; 31:10-31; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; 9:9; Malachi 2:14-16; Matthew 5:31-32; 18:2-5; 19:3-9; Mark 10:6-12; Romans 1:18-32; 1 Corinthians 7:1-16; Ephesians 5:21-33; 6:1-4; Colossians 3:18-21; 1 Timothy 5:8,14; 2 Timothy 1:3-5; Titus 2:3-5; Hebrews 13:4; 1 Peter 3:1-7.
Final Authority for Matters of Belief and Conduct
This statement of faith and other governing statements do not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as God’s Word, speaks with final authority concerning faith and practice. It is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For purposes of ClearView’s faith, doctrine, practice, policy and discipline our Executive Team, as defined in the Employee Handbook, serves as ClearView’s final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.
READ THE BAPTIST FAITH AND MESSAGE (2000) FOR A MORE DETAILED EXPLANATION OF THE BIBLICAL BELIEFS OF OUR CHURCH AND SOUTHERN BAPTISTS.
The following are the objectives of ClearView Baptist Church:
To be a dynamic spiritual body empowered by the Holy Spirit to share Christ with as many people as possible in our local church, community and throughout the world;
To be a worshipping fellowship centered in the proclamation of the Gospel, experiencing the presence of God, and responding to the Lordship of Jesus Christ;
To grow in Christlikeness in our daily lives through commitment of life, personality, and possessions to the Lordship of Jesus Christ;
To grow disciples of Christ through Bible study and training and to equip them to lead and serve in various ministries of the church for this and future generations;
To minister spiritually, physically, and socially in Jesus’ name to the welfare of our members and the needy in the local community and around the world.
To provide activities and an atmosphere for meaningful fellowship among believers.
The government of this church is vested in the body of believers who compose it. The membership retains unto itself the exclusive right of self-government in all phases of this church’s spiritual and temporal life. All internal groups created and empowered by the church shall report to and be accountable only to the church. Except for delegated responsibilities and authorities under the terms of this Constitution and Bylaws, church members specifically retain sole authority of matters, including but not limited to the following items:
- Calling and dismissing the senior pastor.
- Approving persons for membership.
- Granting letters of good standing to those that join other churches.
- Amending the Constitution and Bylaws.
- Approving the annual budget.
- Incurring debt other than consistent with the approved annual budget.
- Establishing a mission church.
- Approving the affiliations of the church.
Insofar as is practical, this church shall cooperate with and support the Nashville Baptist Association, the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board and the Southern Baptist Convention. 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.
V. CHURCH COVENANT
Since, by God’s grace, we have accepted Christ as Savior and Lord, we, as members of ClearView Baptist Church, make this covenant together:
- To walk together in brotherly love;
- To show loving care for one another and encourage, counsel and admonish one another;
- To assemble faithfully for worship and maintain ministries of evangelism, education and service;
- To endeavor to bring up those under our care “in the training and instruction of the Lord;”
- To seek, by Christian example and personal effort, to win others to Christ and to encourage their growth toward Christian maturity;
- To share one another’s joys and endeavor to bear one another’s burdens and sorrows;
- To encourage each other to demonstrate Christian faith in our daily lives, upholding standards of Christian morality within our fellowship and in society;
- 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;
- To watch over one another in steadfast love; to remember each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian grace, sympathy and courtesy in speech;
- To be slow to take offense, always ready for reconciliation and mindful of the instructions of our Savior.
As a result of this covenant relationship, we will seek earnestly to live to the glory of God Who brought us out of darkness into His marvelous light.
CLEARVIEW BAPTIST CHURCH BYLAWS
Section 1. General
This is an autonomous and democratic Southern Baptist church under the leadership of Jesus Christ. The membership of this church shall consist of persons who have made a profession of their faith in Jesus Christ as personal Savior and Lord and who are in agreement with the faith and practices of this church.
The membership will affirm those who present themselves for membership by voting to receive them as members at the next business meeting.
Section 2. Candidacy
Upon affirmation of the Statement of Faith, any persons may offer themselves as candidates for membership in this church in any of the following ways:
- By profession of faith in Jesus Christ and for baptism by immersion.
- By promise of a letter of recommendation from another Southern Baptist church.
- By a statement of prior conversion experience and baptism in a Baptist church of like faith when no letter is obtainable.
- By affirmation of faith in Jesus Christ by persons from non-Southern Baptist churches who have received biblical believer’s baptisın by immersion.
All such candidates, as listed above, shall be elected to church membership at the next quarterly business meeting.
Section 3. Watchcare
Any believers who are away from their home church may affiliate with ClearView for purposes of fellowship, spiritual guidance, care and leadership from the members and staff, and to participate with the ministries without changing their membership from their home church. The person under Watchcare may not vote or hold any office at ClearView.
Section 4. Voting Rights of Members
Only members of this church on the active roll may participate and/or vote in transactions of this church providing they are present when the vote is taken. Every member of the church is eligible for consideration as a candidate for elective offices in the church.
Section 5. Termination of Membership
Membership shall be terminated in the following ways:
- Transfer to another church.
- Notification of having joined a church of another denomination.
- Exclusion by action of this church.
- Request in writing by a member to be released from church membership.Should a member move from our community (excluding military service, attendance at college, or the like) or to an address unknown and/or fail to unite with another church, the member shall be placed on an inactive roll. These inactive members shall not be included in any membership figures quoted for our church or used in any calculation related Should such a member move back into our fellowship, the member will automatically return to the active roll.
Section 6. Discipline
It will be the practice of this church to emphasize to its members that every reasonable measure will be taken to assist any troubled member. The senior pastor, other members of the church staff and deacons are available for counsel and guidance. The attitude of members toward one another will be guided by a concern for restoration rather than punishment.
Because of the sensitive nature of these matters, and to protect all parties concerned, the church has committed to the Accountability Council the responsibility to deal with all discipline and exclusion issues. The Accountability Council will consist of the Senior Pastor, another ordained pastor on staff, the Chairman of the Deacons, the Personnel Committee Chair, and the Finance Committee Chair.
When a church member steps outside the bounds of biblical conduct including, but not limited to, conduct opposed to the teaching of the Word of God, threatening to the testimony of the church, divisive to the body, or opposed to ClearView’s Statement of Faith and Constitution and Bylaws, the Accountability Council will take every reasonable measure to resolve the problem in accordance with the biblical pattern set forth in Matthew 18:15-17, Galatians 6:1,1 Corinthians 5, 2 Thessalonians 3:6, and Titus 3:10-11.
First, a meeting will take place between a person designated by the Accountability Council and the member to point out the member’s fault. If the member will not listen, the Accountability Council will designate one or two others to join the first and they will all meet with the member so that every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses. After working through steps one and two, and before it goes before the church, the Accountability Council will meet to determine if exclusion of the member is necessary. If the Accountability Council decides that exclusion is necessary they will then present the matter to the church for a vote. A three-fourths vote by written ballot of the members present in a meeting announced two weeks in advance is required. The church may then proceed to declare the person to be no longer in the membership of the church. All such proceedings shall be pervaded by a spirit of Christian kindness and forbearance.
The church may restore to membership any person previously excluded, upon request of the excluded person, and by majority of the church upon evidence of the excluded person’s repentance and reformation.
Section 7. Christian Mediation
Members of the church agree to submit any legal dispute with ClearView Baptist Church, any staff member, or person acting on behalf of Clearview Baptist Church, for mediation before a mutually agreed-upon mediator, or if none can be agreed upon, one selected by Peacemaker Ministries or other organization as chosen by our Executive Team. Lawsuits between believers, or threats of lawsuits between believers, are a matter of grave concern for the church, are contrary to biblical and church teaching, and mediation is an effort to resolve disputes in a biblical fashion (1 Cor. 6: 1-7).
Mediation will be governed by the Rules of Procedure for Christian Conciliation of the Institute for Christian Conciliation (ICC Rules), unless modified as stipulated by the parties. In particular, subject to the more detailed provisions of the ICC Rules, the mediator(s) will attempt to assist ClearView in reaching a voluntary settlement of any disputes through mediation. The confidentiality of the mediation process will be protected and these matters will not be discussed with people who do not have a necessary interest in them. If settlement can be agreed upon, the conciliators may, at their discretion, issue an advisory opinion. Neither the opinion, nor any communications exchanged in the mediation process, will be admissible for any purpose in any subsequent legal proceeding.
II. CHURCH OFFICERS AND STAFF
All church leadership and officers must be a member of the church. The officers of this church shall be as follows: Senior Pastor, Pastoral Staff, moderator, clerk, treasurer, and trustees.
Section 1. Every Employee a Minister
As a religious organization, ClearView has the right to hire in accordance with our religious beliefs. All employees of ClearView must be Christian, and as such, must affirm ClearView’s Statement of Faith, consistently seek to live by biblical standards, and agree to demonstrate unity within the church with a humble and teachable spirit.
At ClearView every employee is a minister, regardless of their title, and is expected to fully engage in the ministry of the church. We consider ministry readiness, and an individual’s capacity to represent ClearView’s beliefs as a minister, during the selection process for all employment positions. An essential function within every position held by an employee at Clearview is to uphold and represent Clearview and our beliefs in all areas of personal and professional life. (Ephesians 4:11-13, 1 Peter 2:5-9, Matthew 28:18-20, 2 Corinthians 5:18-20, 2 Timothy 4:1-2, 1 Peter 3:15)
Section 2. Senior Pastor
The Senior Pastor is responsible for leading the church to function as a New Testament church. He shall lead the congregation, the organizations and the church staff to perform their tasks. He shall serve as a non-voting ex-officio member of all committees, teams and task forces.
The Senior Pastor is a leader of pastoral ministries in the church. As such, he works with the church staff and church leaders to:
- Lead the church in performing its tasks
- Lead the church to prayerfully engage in a fellowship of worship, witness, education, ministry, and application.
- Preach the gospel to believers and unbelievers.
- Care for the church’s members and other persons in the community.
A Senior Pastor shall be chosen and called by the church whenever a vacancy occurs. His election shall occur at a meeting called for that purpose, of which at least one week’s public notice has been given to all active members.
A Pastor Search Committee shall be recommended by the Nominating Committee and elected by the church to seek out a suitable Senior Pastor, and its recommendations shall constitute a nomination. Any member has the privilege of making a pastoral recommendation to the Pastor Search Committee. The committee shall bring to the consideration of the church only one candidate at a time. Election shall be by written ballot and an affirmation vote of three-fourths of the members present. The Senior Pastor thus elected shall serve until the relationship is terminated by his request or the church’s request. The Senior Pastor shall give at least two weeks’ notice at the time of resignation before terminating his responsibilities. Termination of a Senior Pastor’s services at the request of the church shall be by written ballot of three-fourths of the members present and voting. A meeting called for this purpose shall have been announced at least one week prior to the meeting.
Section 3. Pastoral Staff
The pastoral staff will be called and employed as the church determines the need for such offices. A job description for each position shall be approved by the Personnel Committee.
The church membership will be notified when a vacancy is to be filled. The Personnel Committee will look for qualified persons and allow church members to suggest names for consideration.
The pastoral staff will be recommended to the church by the Personnel Committee with the approval of the Senior Pastor. Pastoral staff shall be called by church action with an affirmative vote of a majority of the members present. Pastoral staff elected shall serve until the relationship is terminated.
Pastoral staff shall give at least two weeks’ notice at the time of resignation before terminating their responsibilities. Termination of pastoral staff, at the request of the Senior Pastor, shall be by a two-thirds vote of the Personnel Committee with at least one week’s notice to the members of the committee of the upcoming vote. Pastoral staff members will work cooperatively under the leadership of the Senior Pastor, in the performance of their duties.
Section 4. All Other Ministry Staff
All other ministry staff members will be employed as the need for their services is determined. The Senior Pastor in conjunction with the church Personnel Committee shall have the authority to employ and to terminate services of all other ministry staff members. Such employment and termination of services shall be with the recommendation of the supervising staff member.
Section 5. Deacons
ClearView deacons are a body of servants within the church and not a governing or decision making body. They are chosen and ordained according to the qualifications mentioned in I Timothy 3:8-13 and Acts 6:1-6. There shall be no prescribed number, but there shall be at least one assigned deacon for each Sunday School class/small group. Their role will be to assist the pastors and help the church accomplish its mission by serving the members as needed. They will assist in serving the Lord’s Supper.
Any male member of the church who meets the Scriptural and church guidelines may be enlisted to serve as a deacon. If not already ordained, he may be ordained in a service before or after being elected by the body of Deacons. The seven requirements are as follows:
- Be saved through faith in Christ.
- Be one who possesses Christian purpose and compassion, who sets a high standard of Christian family living and who demonstrates positive spiritual attitudes in all work, social and church relationships.
- Be of good report, sober, not greedy, led by the Holy Spirit, full of wisdom and faith, and sustaining an active prayer life.
- Be faithful and supportive of the total ministry of the church.
- Be willing to engage in the proclaiming, caring and leading ministries of the church. These ministries include witnessing to the lost, ministering to assigned members of the church, especially the sick and the bereaved, and assisting in observing the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper.
- Be one who believes, studies, and applies to life the inspired Word of God.
- Be twenty-one years of age or older and who has been a faithful and active member of this church for at least one year.
Anyone meeting the qualifications may be nominated in the Sunday School class/small group and if approved by the teacher and deacon leadership may begin to serve. He may be ordained after one year in training if not previously ordained. A vote by the church is not required, but affirmation by the ministerial staff is encouraged.
The length of a deacon’s term of service may be left open, subject to agreement of the Sunday School class/small group and the deacon. The deacon may request a leave of absence when needed. Any disciplinary action to remove a deacon from his assignment will be prayerfully handled by the ministerial staff in conjunction with the Sunday School class/small group leadership where he has been assigned.
At least once a year, those presently serving as deacons will be affirmed in their roles, and any deacons in training will be ordained in a service of the church.
Meetings of the deacons will be held at least once a quarter under the direction of the deacon officers and a member of the pastoral staff.
Section 6. Moderator
The church will elect annually a moderator as its presiding officer. In the absence of the moderator, the clerk shall call the church to order and an acting moderator shall be elected.
Section 7. Clerk
The church will elect a clerk annually and the clerk shall keep in a suitable book a record of all the actions of the church, except as otherwise herein provided. The clerk is responsible for keeping a register of the names of members, with dates of admission, dismissal or death, together with a record of baptisms. The clerk shall issue a letter of dismissal voted by the church, preserve on file all communications and written official reports and give legal notice of all meetings where such notice is necessary, as indicated in these bylaws. The church may delegate some of the clerical responsibilities to a church secretary. All church records are church property and should be filed in the church office.
Section 8. Treasurer
The church will elect annually a church Treasurer. The term of office will be the same as the church’s fiscal year. It shall be the duty of the Treasurer to receive, preserve and pay, upon receipts of vouchers approved and signed by authorized personnel, all money or things of value paid or given to the church, keeping at all times an itemized account of all receipts and disbursements. It will be the duty of the Treasurer to render to the church at each regular business meeting an itemized report of the receipts and disbursements for the preceding quarter. The Treasurer’s report shall be audited annually by an independent CPA firm. The Treasurer will be bonded with the church paying the bond.
All financial records are the property of the church and will be kept as permanent records of the church.
Section 9. Trustees
Three trustees elected by the church shall hold in trust the church property and periodically review and recommend adequate insurance coverage on church buildings, properties and programs. They will have no power to buy, sell, mortgage, lease, or transfer any property without specific vote of the church authorizing each action. It will be the function of the trustees to affix their signatures to legal documents involving the sale, mortgage, purchase or rental of property of other legal documents where the signatures of trustees are required. Trustees shall serve a three-year term on a rotating basis, with one new trustee being elected every year.
Section 1. General
All church committee members, and the positions of chairperson and a vice-chairperson within the committees, will be recommended by the Nominating Committee and elected by the church unless otherwise indicated in the description below. Other permanent committees and special committees shall be authorized by the church as needed.
Committee members will serve terms of three (3) years with members serving staggered terms. Terms of service begin October 1st.
Section 2. Nominating Committee
The Nominating Committee recommends persons for all volunteer positions to be elected by the church. The minimum number serving on this committee shall be seven (7) members.
Section 3. Personnel Committee
The Personnel Committee assists the church in matters related to employed personnel. Its work includes such areas as determining staff needs, employee salaries, benefits and personnel services. The Personnel Committee, in consultation with the Senior Pastor and Church Administrator, shall make sure the Employee Handbook is current and administered properly. The minimum number serving on this committee shall be nine (9) members.
Section 4. Facilities and Risk Management Committee
The Facilities and Risk Management Committee assists the church in matters related to buildings and grounds of church-owned property. Its work includes such areas as maintaining all church buildings for ready use, recommending policies regarding use of buildings and the selection process for maintenance of buildings (inside and outside).
They shall be responsible for setting policies and procedures for church-owned vehicles and for maintenance of church-owned vehicles. They shall also be responsible for reviewing legal issues of church owned properties, reviewing insurance needs and other related legal matters. The minimum number serving on this committee shall be seven (7) members.
Section 5. Finance Committee
The Finance Committee will be responsible to the church for supervising, approving and assessing all areas of church finance. The Finance Committee will work with the Church Administrator on an ongoing basis to achieve these objectives. The committee will participate in the process of developing a budget for church approval each year and lead the church in stewardship education. The minimum number serving on this committee will be nine (9) members. The Church Administrator, or his or her designee, will serve as staff liaison to the Finance Committee.
Section 6. Scholarship Committee
The Scholarship Committee will be responsible for establishing policies and procedures for a scholarship fund for members of ClearView Baptist Church. They will interview and recommend persons to receive these scholarships. The minimum number serving on this committee shall be seven (7) members.
Section 7. Impact Missions Committee
The Impact Missions Committee will provide guidance in all phases of missionary development and mission education for the church. They will recommend ways to encourage missions development and commitment. The minimum number serving on this committee will be seven (7) members.
Section 8. The Weekday Education Committee (CVP)
The Weekday Education Committee will provide direction, supervision and coordination of ClearView Prep Preschool (CVP) programs as a part of the ClearView Children’s Education Ministry. The minimum number serving on this committee will be nine (9) members.
IV. MINISTRY ORGANIZATIONS AND TEAMS Section 1. Sunday School/Small Group
Section 1. Sunday School/Small Group
Sunday School/small groups meet on Sunday and during the week and are available for all ages. Sunday School classes/small groups are focused on teaching God’s Word, building biblical community, making disciples and serving the community.
Section 2. Discipleship
The Discipleship Ministry includes short-term and ongoing groups, challenging believers to grow more like Christ, lead others to faith in Christ and mentor them to grow spiritually. These groups meet at church, in homes and in the workplace. They focus on Gospel conversations.
Section 3. Worship
The Worship Ministry provides passionate congregational worship services that allow for believers to openly profess love for God and celebrate what He has done through His Son. Worship ministry teaches members to participate in congregational singing, trains persons to lead, sing, and play music and provides organization and leadership for church-wide events and services.
Section 4. Women’s Ministry
The Women’s Ministry is led by a volunteer director and includes additional volunteer leaders as needed. The tasks of women’s ministry include the following: involve women in Bible study, challenge women to greater involvement in the church, provide serving opportunities in the community and offer special events for women during the year.
Section 5. Men’s Ministry
The Men’s Ministry is led by a volunteer director and includes additional volunteer leaders as needed. The tasks of men’s ministry include the following: involve men in Bible study and accountability groups, challenge men to greater involvement in the church, provide serving opportunities in the community and offer special events for men during the year.
Section 6. Church Media Library Service
The church media library serves as the resource center for the church. The church media library team will seek to provide and promote the use of printed and digital resources. The team also provides consultation to church leaders and members in the use of printed and digital resources.
Section 7. Volunteers and Teams
Our church requires a large number of volunteers to carry on its work. This involves ushers, greeters, teachers, class officers, etc. These persons may be enlisted as the need exists under the guidance of church staff and do not require election by the church. However, there are volunteer positions, especially in ministries involving minors, that will require a background check to be obtained by an appropriate staff member.
Section 1. Baptism
A person who accepts Jesus Christ as Savior by personal faith, who confesses Him publicly, and who indicates a commitment to follow Christ as Lord, shall be received for baptism.
- Baptism shall be by immersion in water.
- Baptism shall be administered by the Senior Pastor or whomever the Senior Pastor or pastoral staff shall authorize.
- Baptism shall be administered as an act of worship in any of the worship services.
Section 2. The Lord’s Supper
The Lord’s Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby those who have received Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, through partaking of the bread and fruit of the vine, commemorate the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
- The Lord’s Supper shall be observed at least quarterly.
- The Senior Pastor and deacons shall be responsible for administering the Lord’s Supper.
VI. CHURCH MEETINGS
Section 1. Worship Services
The church shall meet regularly for preaching, instruction, evangelism, fellowship and for the worship of Almighty God. These meetings will primarily be on Sundays and shall be conducted under the direction of the Senior Pastor.
Section 2. Special Services
Other church services and meetings essential in the promotion of the objectives of the church shall be placed on the church calendar.
Section 3. Business Meetings
Regular business meetings shall be held quarterly at a time designated by the church.
Section 4. Called Business Meetings
Called business meetings may be held to consider special matters of significant nature.
A one-week notice of the subject, date, time and location must be given for the called business meeting unless extreme urgency renders such notice impractical.
Section 5. Quorum
Any vote taken by membership requires a majority vote with a quorum present unless otherwise stated in these Bylaws. The quorum consists of those who attend the business meeting, provided it is a stated meeting or one that has been properly called.
Section 6. Parliamentary Rules
The latest revision of Robert’s Rules of Order is the authority for parliamentary rules of procedure for all business meetings of the church.
VII. CHURCH FINANCES
Section 1. Budget
The Finance Committee in consultation with the Senior Pastor and ministerial staff shall prepare and submit to the church for approval an inclusive budget, indicating by items the amount needed and sought for all expenses.
Section 2. Accounting Procedures
All funds for any and all purposes shall be managed by the Church Administrator and the Treasurer and be properly recorded. A system of accounting that will adequately provide for the management of all funds shall be the responsibility of the Finance Committee.
Section 3. Fiscal Year
The financial year of the church shall begin on October 1 and end on September 30, unless circumstances dictate otherwise.
The cessation of church operations and dissolution of church assets shall be by the recommendation of the trustees and by three-fourths written approval of the members present and voting. A meeting called for this purpose shall be announced at least two weeks prior to the meeting.
It is noted the Nashville Baptist Association, Inc., assisted ClearView Baptist Church in various ways, including financially, when the church was being established. In the event that ClearView Baptist Church ceases operation, it is the desire of the church that upon dissolution, after all creditors have been paid, the assets shall be distributed to the Nashville Baptist Association, Inc., a Tennessee nonprofit corporation, if the Nashville Baptist Association, Inc. then qualifies as an exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code. If the Nashville Baptist Association, Inc. does not qualify, then the assets shall be distributed to one or more organizations to be designated which do qualify.
A church member may submit proposed amendments to the Constitution and Bylaws to the Church Administrator. The Church Administrator will consult with the Executive Team and Personnel Committee. If it is decided that the Constitution and Bylaws should be amended, they will appoint a Constitution and Bylaws Team consisting of both church staff and church members. The Church Administrator will acknowledge receipt of the proposal from the church member and inform them of the decision regarding whether the proposal will move forward.
Changes in this Constitution and Bylaws may be made at a specially called business meeting of the church. Proposed amendments shall be presented in writing two weeks prior to the called business meeting. Amendments to the Constitution and Bylaws shall be by three-fourth vote of all members of the church present at the called meeting who are entitled to vote.