God, having been pleased to lead by His Holy Spirit, the founding of Grace Bible Church Seminole
(Grace Bible Church) in 2020 for the worship of God and the carrying out of Gospel ministry, is
graciously sustaining us to further His work;
Therefore, we the core group of Grace Bible Church, do hereby recognize ourselves in accord with the
State of Texas as a non-profit corporation and adopt this Constitution and By-Laws as our articles of
governance, so that in all ways we might glorify our Head, Jesus Christ, as has been revealed in sacred
Scripture and our Statement of Faith and Covenant.
Article 1 – Name
The name of the church shall be set forth as Grace Bible Church, with its principle place of worship and
business in the City of Seminole, in the County of Gaines, in the State of Texas. This church shall be an
independent church, in that it is not controlled by any other organization or denomination, yet shall it not
be an isolated church in that it has no fellowship or participation with other churches of like faith.
Furthermore, this church shall carry out its ministry in the spirit that seeks to elevate the Scriptures as the
supreme goal and guide of all that we do.
Article 2 – Purpose
The ultimate purpose of Grace Bible Church shall be to bring glory to God in all of our endeavors by love
for and obedience to Him. In order to glorify God, the Scriptural objectives shall be to worship Him in
Spirit and in Truth (John 4:24); to equip the saints to carry out the work of the ministry through teaching
and discipleship (Ephesians. 4:12); to carry the evangelistic command of the Great Commission by
proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ corporately and privately at home and abroad; administering the
ordinances of baptism and communion; fostering Biblical fellowship among believers; serving those in
need, whether spiritual, emotional, mental, or physical, as opportunities arise; and protecting the sound
doctrine and life of the individual believer and the church, as portrayed in the Scripture within the life of
Article 3 – Membership
Section 1 – Qualifications
To qualify for membership at Grace Bible Church, a person must be a believer in Jesus Christ who gives
evidence of regeneration, who has been baptized, in obedience to Christ, following his or her
regeneration, and who wholeheartedly believes in the Christian faith as revealed in the Bible.
Each member must agree to submit to the sound teaching of scripture as expressed in the Statement of
Faith and must promise to keep the commitments expressed in the Church Covenant.
The elders shall be responsible for determining each person’s qualification for membership. In making
this determination, they may rely on a person’s profession of faith, or such other evidence, as the elders
Section 2 – Admission of Members
To be admitted into church membership, applicants shall be ordinarily, but not necessarily, recommended
by the elders for admission and must be accepted by vote of the members at any regular or special
meeting of the members, and shall at that point relinquish their membership in other churches.
Section 3 – Duties and Privileges of Membership
In accord with the duties mentioned in the Church Covenant, each member shall be privileged and
expected to participate in and contribute to the ministry and life of the church, consistent with God’s
leading and with the gifts, time, and material resources each has received from God.
Only those shall be entitled to serve in the ministries of the church who are members of this congregation;
non-members may serve on an arranged basis with the approval of the elders. Notwithstanding, nonmembers may serve the church for purposes of administration and professional consultation.
Under Christ this congregation is led by the elders and governed by its members. Therefore, it is the
privilege and responsibility of members to attend members’ meetings and vote on the election of officers,
on decisions regarding membership status, and on such other matters as may be submitted to a vote.
Section 4 – On Church Discipline
Any member consistently neglectful of his or her duties or guilty of conduct by which the name of our
Lord Jesus Christ may be dishonored, and so opposing the welfare of the church and/or rendering
doubtful a profession of faith, shall be subject to the admonition of the elders and the discipline of the
church, according to the instructions of our Lord in Matthew 18: 15–17 and the example of scripture.
Church discipline, then, should ordinarily be contemplated after individual private admonition has failed.
Church discipline can include admonition by the elders or congregation,
deposition from office, and excommunication (see Matthew 18: 15–17; 1 Timothy 5: 19–20;
1 Corinthians 5: 4–5).
• The purpose of such discipline should be for the repentance, reconciliation, and
spiritual growth of the individual disciplined (see Proverbs 15: 5; 29: 15; I
Corinthians 4: 14; Ephesians 6: 4; I Timothy 3: 4–5; Hebrews 12: 1–11;
Psalm 119: 115; 141: 5; Proverbs 17: 10; 25: 12; 27: 5; Ecclesiastes 7: 5;
Matthew 7: 26–27; 18: 15–17; Luke 17: 3; Acts 2: 40; I Corinthians 5: 5;
Galatians 6: 1–5; II Thessalonians 3: 6, 14–15; I Timothy 1: 20; Titus 1:
13–14; James 1: 22);
• For the instruction in righteousness and good of other Christians, as an example to
them (see Proverbs 13: 20; Romans 15: 14; I Corinthians 5: 11; 15: 33;
Colossians 3: 16; I Thessalonians 5: 14 [note this is written to the whole
church, not just to leaders]; I Timothy 5: 20; Titus 1: 11; Hebrews 10: 24–
• For the purity of the church as a whole (see I Corinthians 5: 6–7; II Corinthians
13: 10; Ephesians 5: 27; II John 10; Jude 24; Revelation 21: 2);
• For the good of our corporate witness to non–Christians (see Proverbs 28: 7;
Matthew 5: 13–16; John 13: 35; Acts 5: 1–14; Ephesians 5: 11; I Timothy
3: 7; II Peter 2: 2; I John 3: 10); and
• Supremely for the glory of God by reflecting His holy character (see
Deuteronomy 5: 11; I Kings 11: 2; II Chronicles 19: 2; Ezra 6: 21;
Nehemiah 9: 2; Isaiah 52: 11; Ezekiel 36: 20; Matthew 5: 16; John 15: 8;
18: 17, 25; Romans 2: 24; 15: 5–6; II Corinthians 6: 14–7: 1; Ephesians 1:
4; 5: 27; I Peter 2: 12).
Section 5 – Termination of Membership
The church shall recognize the termination of a person’s membership following
his or her death, and it shall also recognize the termination of a person’s membership
following his or her self-professed apostasy as confirmed by congregational vote. Additionally, the
church may recognize the termination of a person’s membership after
he or she has voluntarily resigned or joined with another church.
Membership may also be terminated as an act of church discipline (ordinarily, but not necessarily, at
the recommendation of the elders) upon the vote of at least two-thirds of the members present at any
regular or special meeting of the members.
The church shall have authority to refuse a member’s voluntary resignation or
transfer of membership to another church, either for the purpose of proceeding with a
process of church discipline, or for any other biblical reason.
Article 4 – Meetings
Section 1 – Worship Meetings
Worship services shall be held each Lord’s Day (Sunday) and may be held throughout the
week as the church determines.
Section 2 – Members’ Meetings
In every meeting together, members shall act in that spirit of mutual trust, openness, and loving
consideration which is appropriate within the body of our Lord Jesus Christ.
There shall be a regular members’ meeting at least every quarter, at some time apart from a public
worship service agreed upon by the membership.
An elder designated by the elders shall preside as moderator at all members’ meetings of the church. The
elders shall see that the stated meetings of the church are regularly held and that required reports are
submitted to the church by the responsible members.
Provided all constitutional provisions for notification have been met, a quorum shall be understood to be
met by those members present. All votes shall be tallied based on the number of votes cast by members
A budget shall be approved by the membership at a members’ meeting not more than three months after
the start of the fiscal year. Congregational approval shall proceed, without amendment, as a single vote on
the budget in its entirety. Prior to this approval and subject to the elders’ discretion, expenditures may
continue at the prior year’s level.
At any regular or special members’ meeting, officers may be elected and positions filled as needed, so
long as all relevant constitutional requirements have been met.
Special members’ meetings may be called as required by the elders, or at the written request, submitted to
the elders, of five percent of the voting membership. The date, time, and purpose of any special meeting
shall be announced at all public services of the church within two weeks preceding the meeting. In the
event of a written request from the members, the elders shall call a special meeting to be held within one
month of their receipt of the request.
Article 5 – Officers
Section 1 – Summary
The Biblical offices in the church are elders and deacons. In addition, our church recognizes the
administrative positions under this constitution of clerk and treasurer. All officers must be members of
this church prior to assuming their responsibilities.
Section 2 – Elders
The elders shall be comprised of not less than three men who meet the qualifications for the office of
elder laid out in I Timothy 3: 1–7 and Titus 1: 6–9.
• Subject to the will of the congregation, the elders shall oversee the ministry and resources of the church.
In keeping with the principles outlined in Acts 6: 1–6 and I Peter 5: 1–4, the elders shall devote their
time to prayer, the ministry of the Word (by teaching and encouraging sound doctrine), and shepherding
• The church shall recognize men gifted and willing to serve in this calling, in accordance with the
constitutional provisions on elections. These men shall be received as gifts of Christ to His church and
set apart as elders. This recognition shall be reaffirmed by the church every three years.
• An elder’s term of office may be terminated by resignation or by dismissal. Any two members with
reason to believe that an elder should be dismissed should express such concern to the elders and, if
need be, to the congregation. Any such action shall be done in accordance with the instructions of our
Lord in Matthew 18: 15–17 and I Timothy 5: 17–21. Any of the elders may be dismissed by a two thirds vote of the members at any members’ meeting of the church.
• The elders shall take particular responsibility to examine and instruct prospective members, examine
and recommend all prospective candidates for offices and positions, oversee the work of the deacons
and appointed church agents and committees, conduct worship services, administer the ordinances of
baptism and communion, equip the membership for the work of the ministry, encourage sound doctrine
and practice, admonish and correct error, oversee the process of church discipline, coordinate and
promote the ministries of the church, and mobilize the church for world missions.
• Further, the elders should seek to ensure that all who minister the Word to the congregation, including
outside speakers, affirm our fundamental gospel convictions and do not teach our church anything
contrary to the Statement of Faith.
• The elders may establish ministry positions or committees to assist them in fulfilling their
responsibilities. The elders may also propose funding for new paid staff positions. The membership
shall approve all candidates to fill the positions of senior and associate pastor. The scope and approval
of job descriptions for any staff position shall reside in the hands of those with hiring authority for that
• Each year the elders, shall present to the church an itemized budget. This budget shall be. presented for
discussion at a regular or specially-called budget meeting and called up for a vote at the following
members’ meeting. No money shall be solicited by or on behalf of the church or any of its ministries
without the approval of the elders.
• The elders shall elect a chairman of elders’ meetings and shall also elect one of their number to serve as
moderator of members’ meetings. For purposes of compliance with the nonprofit corporation of the
legal requirements of the State of Texas, the elders shall elect one of their number to serve as the
president of the corporation.
Section 3 – The Senior Pastor
The senior pastor shall be an elder. He shall perform the duties of an elder described in Section 2, above,
and shall be recognized by the church as particularly gifted and called to the ministry of preaching and
teaching. His call shall be defined as per Article 6, Section 3.
He shall preach on the Lord’s Day, administer the ordinances of baptism and
communion, and perform such other duties as usually pertain to that office, or as set forth
in the constitution.
The senior pastor shall have primary responsibility for the supervision and evaluation of staff members.
This responsibility may, on a case-by-case basis, be delegated to another staff member.
In the absence or incapacity of the senior pastor the elders shall assume responsibility for his duties, any
of which can be delegated.
Section 4 – Associate Pastors
Based on the needs of the church, the elders may call an associate pastor to serve with the Senior Pastor.
The associate pastor shall be an elder and carry out all responsibilities of an elder as described above.
His primary responsibilities shall be to serve the church in the duties of teaching and preaching, as well as
other tasks required of pastoral ministries. His specific tasks shall be enumerated by the elders at the time
of his calling.
Section 5 – Deacons & Deaconesses
The office of deacon is described in I Timothy 3: 8–13. The church shall recognize, in accordance with
the constitutional provisions on elections, men and women who are giving of themselves in service to the
church, and who possess particular gifts of service. In keeping with the principles laid out in Acts 6:1-6,
these members shall be received as gifts of Christ to His church and set apart as deacons and deaconesses.
They shall be elected to one term lasting for a maximum of three years and may then be elected to another
Deacons and deaconesses shall care for the temporal needs of members, attend to the accommodations for
public worship, and encourage and support those able to help others and those with gifts of
The elders, with assistance from the deacons and deaconesses shall receive, hold, and disburse a fund for
benevolence, reporting on its use to the elders at their request, and reporting to the church its total receipts
and total disbursements only.
The deacons and deaconesses, with the agreement of the elders, may establish unpaid administrative
positions or committees of members to assist them in fulfilling their responsibilities in the church.
Section 6 – Secretary
The secretary, an appointed elder, shall be responsible to record the minutes of all business and ministry
meetings of the church, as well as all elder meetings, oversee the church membership roll, and provide
documentation as requested by the elders, deacons, or the church.
Section 7 – Treasurer
The elder for finance shall serve as the church treasurer. He shall be responsible for the assimilation of all
necessary data and drafting of the annual budget, the oversight of payment of all the church’s expenses,
accounting for and deposit of all tithes and offerings, and any other matter related to the church’s
finances. He shall provide regular financial reports to the elders, and shall be available to answer any
questions from the membership regarding financial matters.
Article 6 – Appointments & Elections
Section 1 – Principles
The process for church elections shall be interpreted and carried out to fulfill the following principles:
• Substantial prayer, both individually and corporately, should be an integral part of the election
• Nominations should proceed with the support of the elders;
• All candidates for church office should be treated with the grace, kindness, and honesty appropriate in
evaluating fellow members;
• The election process shall express that spirit of mutual trust, openness, and loving consideration that
is appropriate within the body of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Section 2 – Selection of Officers
The election of officers shall be held at a members’ meeting of the church.
Names of nominees to serve as elders, deacons, deaconesses, shall be presented by the elders at the
previous members’ meeting (providing that previous meeting occurred at least two weeks prior), and the
election shall proceed as directed by the moderator.
The elders should seek recommendations and involvement from the general membership in the
nomination process. 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 before the relevant church
The moderator shall declare elected all men receiving a two-thirds majority of all votes cast for the office
of elder at a regularly-scheduled members meeting. For all other offices, the moderator shall declare
elected all persons receiving a simple majority of all votes cast; abstentions will not be considered as
The persons elected shall assume their respective offices upon election, unless another date has been
Section 3 – Calling of the Senior Pastor
In the calling of any man to this position, the same basic process of calling an elder must be followed.
In addition, however, the church must be given adequate opportunity to assess the preaching gifts of any
potential senior pastor and, before being asked to express its judgment, must receive assurance from the
elders that, having interviewed the man concerned, they are in no doubt as to his wholehearted assent to
the Statement of Faith and Church Covenant. Notice of the nomination of a man to be elected to
membership and called as senior pastor (which shall include, if necessary, election to membership of his
wife if he is married) must be given at two Sunday morning services following the nomination, prior to
the vote at a members’ meeting.
Section 4 – Calling of Associate Pastor
The call of an associate pastor shall follow the same pattern as that of the senior pastor.
Article 7 – Finances
Section 1 – Support
The primary means of financial support for Grace Bible Church shall be the regular tithes and offerings
given by donors. Any other means of fundraising shall require the approval of the elders.
The church shall retain the rights to sell any real estate, property or assets for the benefit of the church.
The determination regarding debt incurred by the church is that Grace Bible Church shall remain free of
debt. If at anytime the elders see a need to incur debt for reasons such as purchase of property or
expansion it must be approved at two-thirds majority of all votes cast by the members. The need shall be
presented by the elders at the previous members’ meeting (providing that previous meeting occurred at
least two weeks prior).
Section 2 – Budget
The elder for finance shall be responsible for the budget process.
He shall have the authority to assimilate all necessary information from persons and ministries within the
church to compile information for the budget.
He shall have the authority to act as the church’s representatives with the accountability of the elders in
regards to obtaining information and input for recommendation regarding the budget.
Upon compilation of all information, the elder for finance shall put together a preliminary budget to be
reviewed by the elders no later than the end of the first month of the year.
Upon approval of the budget by the elders, the annual budget shall be presented to the church by the elder
for finance at a member’s meeting. Such meeting shall occur within the first three months of the new
year. At such time an annual financial report from the previous year will be reviewed by the elder for
Quarterly financial reports shall be published and made available to the church.
Article 8 – Amendments
Amendments to the Constitution & By-Laws of Grace Bible Church shall be presented to the membership
in writing no less than two weeks prior to a vote. At the time a vote is taken a three-fourths majority of all
present voting members shall be required.
Article 9 – Dissolution Clause
In the event that Grace Bible Church shall be dissolved as a non-profit corporation, all assets of the
corporation shall be given to another ministry of like faith.
Adopted and Approved by the core group on August 5, 2020