Constitution and By-Laws of First Congregational Church of Forest City, Iowa
[Preamble and Articles I-IV]
In gratitude to Almighty God for the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ and His shed blood on the cross, and believing that God's infallible Word requires the edification of the saints as well as the evangelization of the world we, therefore, have formed this body of believers into a church to fulfill that obligation. We adopt this Constitution as a declaration of our convictions and our method of carrying out this responsibility.
ARTICLE I - NAME
The name of this church shall be THE FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH OF FOREST CITY, IOWA.
ARTICLE II - PURPOSE
The purpose of this church shall be to unite followers of Jesus Christ to worship God and to encourage that His will dominate the lives of men. This church will seek the divine will set forth in the Word of God. To this end it shall maintain services for worship of God, and the regular preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the observance of the Christian sacraments. It shall enlist men, women, boy and girls to trust Jesus Christ as Savior and provide a systematic instruction in religion, by seeking to make clear the fact that the principles of Jesus Christ are applicable to the whole of life, i.e. to all personal and social interests. It shall promote the work of the Christian home and foreign missions and thus unite with other churches in Christian fellowship and service. It shall seek in all things to give Christ pre-eminence. We further seek to preserve and promote an autonomous, New Testament local church in Forest City, Iowa.
ARTICLE III - POLICY
The government of this church is vested in its members who exercise the right of control in all its affairs, subject in legal matters to the Articles of Incorporation granted it by the Secretary of State of the state of Iowa.
It may commit itself to fellowship with such other churches as it deems Biblically acceptable, while the church is amenable to no ecclesiastical judicatory, it accepts the obligation of mutual council, courtesy and cooperation with like-minded churches, and pledges itself to share common aims and works which are in accord with our doctrinal position.
ARTICLE IV - STATEMENT OF FAITH
This church recognizes the Bible as the sufficient rule of faith and practice and hold that living in accordance with the teachings of Jesus Christ is the true test of fellowship. Each member shall have the undisturbed right to follow the Word of God according to the dictates of his or her own conscience, under the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, and the claims of Christian brotherhood. The following is a statement of what this church believes is basic to fundamental, Bible-believing people.
1. We believe the Bible, consisting of the Old and New Testament, to be the only inspired, inerrant, infallible, authoritative Word of God written.
2. We believe that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
3. We believe in the deity of Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father, and in His personal return in power and glory.
4. We believe that for salvation of lost and sinful man regeneration by the Holy Spirit is absolutely essential. This salvation is obtained by a personal faith in Jesus Christ and His substitutionary death on the cross.
5. We believe in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; they that are saved unto the resurrection of life and they that are lost unto the resurrection of damnation.
6. We believe in the spiritual unity of all believers in Christ.