Rock Constitution

Preamble

We, the members of the Rock of Our Salvation Evangelical Free Church, in order to carry out more effectively the commission given by Jesus Christ to His Church, and affirming that, as Christians we are to glorify God in everything we do by loving Him with all of our heart, mind and strength, and loving our neighbors as we love ourselves, do ordain and establish the following Constitution to which we voluntarily submit ourselves.

Article 1

1.1 The name of this organization shall be the "Rock of Our Salvation Evangelical Free Church of Chicago, Illinois", (Rock Church).

Article 2

2.1 Authority: In alignment with the Word of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit, the Pastor and the Elders are appointed to carry out the workings of this local church body. All major decisions of the church shall be submitted to the congregation for affirmation at its regular business meetings. (See Appendix B and C)

2.2 Affiliation: This Church shall be affiliated with The Evangelical Free Church of America and its Great Lakes District and shall send delegates to their conferences, support their missions, and unite in all mutual efforts for the furtherance of the Gospel of Christ in the manner and measure that the church decides.

Article 3

Rock Church seeks to exist:

3.1 To glorify God by growing together in love and obedience to Jesus Christ.

The Guiding Principles, Central Ministry Focus, and Preferred Culture definitions are listed in Article I of the Rock Church's ByLaws.

Article 4

Rock Church affirms the statement of faith of the Great Lakes District of the Evangelical Free Church of America, which reads as follows:

4.1 God

We believe in one God, Creator of all things, holy, infinitely perfect, and eternally existing in a loving unity of three equally divine Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Having limitless knowledge and sovereign power, God has graciously purposed from eternity to redeem a people for Himself and to make all things new for His own glory.

4.2 The Bible

We believe that God has spoken in the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, through the words of human authors. As the verbally inspired Word of God, the Bible is without error in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for salvation, and the ultimate authority by which every realm of human knowledge and endeavor should be judged. Therefore, it is to be believed in all that it teaches, obeyed in all that it requires, and trusted in all that it promises.

4.3 The Human Condition

We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image, but they sinned when tempted by Satan. In union with Adam, human beings are sinners by nature and by choice, alienated from God, and under His wrath. Only through God's saving work in Jesus Christ can we be rescued, reconciled and renewed.

4.4 Jesus Christ

We believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person in two natures. Jesus--Israel's promised Messiah--was conceived through the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate.

4.5 The Work of Christ

We believe that Jesus Christ, as our representative and substitute, shed His blood on the cross as the perfect, all-sufficient sacrifice for our sins. His atoning death and victorious resurrection constitute the only ground for salvation.

4.6 The Holy Spirit

We believe that the Holy Spirit, in all that He does, glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of its guilt. He regenerates sinners, and in Him they are baptized into union with Christ and adopted as heirs in the family of God. He also indwells, illuminates, guides, equips and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service.

4.7 The Church

We believe that the true church comprises all who have been justified by God's grace through faith alone in Christ alone. They are united by the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ, of which He is the Head. The true church is manifest in local churches, whose membership should be composed only of believers. The Lord Jesus mandated two rodinances, baptism and the Lord's Supper, which visibly and tangibly express the gospel. Though they are not the means of salvation, when celebrated by the church in genuine faith, these ordinances confirm and nourish the believer.

4.8 Christian Living

We believe that God's justifying grace must not be separated from His sanctifying power and purpose. God commands us to love Him supremely and others sacrificially, and to live out our faith with care for one another, compassion toward the poor and justice for the oppressed. With God's Workd, the Spirit's power, and fervent prayer in Christ's name, we are to combat the spiritual forces of evil. In obedience to Christs's commission, we are to make disciples among all people, always bearing witness to the gospel in word and deed.

4.9 Christ's Return

We believe in the personal, bodily and premillennial return of our Lord Jesus Christ. The coming of Christ, at a time known only to God, demands constant expectancy and, as our blessed hope, motivates the believer to godly living, sacrificial service and energetic mission.

4.10 Response and Eternal Destiny

We believe that God commands everyone everywhere to believe the gospel by turning to Him in repentance and receiving the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that God will raise the dead bodily and judge the world, assigning the unbeliever to condemnation and eternal, conscious punishment and the believer to eternal blessedness and joy with the Lord in the new heaven and the new earth, to the praise of His glorious grace. Amen.

Article 5

5.1 Membership of this church shall be composed of those individuals who, through saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, have been born again, who manifest the fruit of a true Christian life, who subscribe to the aforementioned Statement of Faith, who are willing to support the church by their prayers, attendance, service and contributions.

Article 6

6.1 Rock Church shall have the power to receive, either by gift or purchase, and to hold such real, personal, or mixed property as is authorized by the laws of the State of Illinois and as is deemed necessary for the business of the church, and shall have the power to dispose of such property by mortgage, deed, or otherwise

6.2 In case of a division of the church (from which we pray God by His mercy to preserve us), the property of the church shall belong to those who abide by its Constitutions and Bylaws.

6.3 In case of a dissolution of the church organization, the property shall be assigned to Circle Urban Ministries for the purposes of that ministry. If Circle Urban Ministries is unable to receive and operate the property, or liquidate and utilize the proceeds to further its mission, the property shall be assigned to the Great Lakes District of the Evangelical Free Church of America. The church shall be considered dissolved if so decided by the Elders and affirmed by the membership.

Article 7

7.1 Constitutional Amendment Meeting: A meeting called by the Elders to vote on proposed amendment(s).

7.2 Notice: Amendment(s) to this Constitution must be submitted to the members in writing at a regular business meeting of the church at least three months prior to the next business meeting or a Constitutional Amendment Meeting.

7.3 The Elders shall host a Special Meeting to discuss the Amendment(s) no earlier than one month following the release of an Amendment(s) nor any later than one month prior to the next business meeting or Constitutional Amendment Meeting where a vote on the Amendment(s) is expected.

7.4 No Amendments at Time of Voting: At the business meeting or Constitutional Amendment Meeting, all amendments must be acted upon as previously presented and without further amendment.

7.5 Seventy-five Percent (75%) Required to Pass: The amendment(s) must receive the affirmative vote of 75% of the membership voting by secret ballot either while physically present at the business meeting or at a Constitutional Amendment Meeting, or voting in absentiaby written ballot mailed or delivered to a designated member of the Elders and received no later than the last business day prior to the meeting at which the vote is recorded. In absentia votes shall be opened and counted after the voting at the business meeting or Constitutional Amendment Meeting has finished but not before in order to avoid inappropriate influence that might result from knowing how the in absentia votes tallied.