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Policy Manual

Listed below is Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church’s Policy Manual. Click the links below to proceed to the various sections of  The TRBC Policy Manual.

Policy #1
Concerning Gifts to Visiting Speakers

Policy #2
Concerning Dress Code

Policy #3
Concerning Use of Church Building as a Temporary Residence

Policy #4
Concerning Conduct at Church Meetings

Policy #5
Concerning Response to a Death

Policy #6
Concerning Pastoral Counseling

Policy #7
Concerning the Needy

Policy #8
Concerning the Participation of Women in the Services of TRBC
Policy #9
Concerning Loan Fund

Policy #10
Concerning Communicating Our Needs to One Another

Policy #11
Concerning the Lord’s Day

Policy #12
Concerning the TRBC Nursery, Nursery Workers, and Nursery-Aged Children

Policy #13
Concerning the Use of Church Facilities for Special Functions

Policy #14
Concerning the Rental of the Church House at 1807 South State Line Avenue

Policy #15
Concerning the Receiving, Handling, and Disbursements of Tithes and Offerings Received by TRBC


INTRODUCTION

The question might arise: “Why a Policy Manual?” ” Don’t we have a Covenant, Constitution, and Confession of Faith?” “Are not these sufficient?” These are valid questions. For certain, the policies in this Policy Manual are not meant to be equal in authority to the three documents listed above – except in those areas that are referenced in the Constitution.

The Church Covenant is our pledge to God, His word, and each other as we enter into the fellowship of Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church (TRBC). The Constitution is a Document stating who we are, our purpose, membership requirements, church officers and their qualifications for office, along with a number of other Articles designed for the orderly operation of Christ’s Church. The Confession of Faith clearly defines those cardinal doctrines of the Christian Faith which we subscribe to and to which we readily submit ourselves.

This Manual does not supersede, amend, annul, nor relax the requirements of any of the Documents listed above. In general, the Policy Manual reflects the policies of TRBC as we seek to put into practice the principles of Scripture related to the life of this church.In addition, we profess that the ultimate authority in all matters is none other than the Holy Scriptures. All opinions, documents, creeds, covenants, policy manuals, and all other things human are to be under the authority of God as declared in His Word, the Bible.This Policy Manual is set forth, therefore, for the following reasons:

● that we of TRBC may be aided in fulfilling the Biblical mandate, “Let all things be done decently and in order” (I Cor 14:40)

● that we be careful as members of Christ’s Church to “give none offense, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God” (I Cor 10:32)

● that all things might be done for the purpose of edification and the good of others(I Cor 14:26; 10:24; Galatians 6:10)

● that we might “make every effort to do what leads to peace” (Ro 14:19; Eph 4:3)

● and that we of TRBC should seek to care for each other’s needs (I Cor 12:25).May God grant us His grace to carry out His will for His glory and the furtherance of His Kingdom.

It is to this end that this Policy Manual is put forth to the members of TRBC. May this Manual be an aid to each of us in our desire to bring every thought and action captive to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. AMEN.

 

Policy #1

CONCERNING GIFTS TO VISITING SPEAKERS

(I Timothy 5:17-18; I Corinthians 9:17; Galatians 6:6)

From time to time Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church invites Christians from other churches to speak or preach at our church. In the spirit of Galatians 6:6, (“And let the one who is taught the word share all good things with him who teaches.”) the following policy has been adopted by TRBC to apply to our guest speakers.

1. TRBC shall seek to cover the transportation costs for the speaker to and from Texarkana.

2. We will provide food and lodging for out guests and their families while they are with us.

3. In addition to covering these expenses, we shall give our visiting speaker no less than $100.00 per day for his services. (This amount may be adjusted periodically to cover inflation.)

4. At the discretion of the elders, these funds may be generated and made available through special offerings and/or through the general church treasury.
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Policy #2

CONCERNING DRESS CODE

(Romans 12:1-2; I Timothy 2:9-10; I Peter 3:3-5)

In keeping with our desire to reflect Christ in all that we do, the members of Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church should see to it that they and their children dress in a modest and decent manner at all times. The following policies should be observed when in attendance at church:

1. Shirts, T-shirts, etc., should not display pictures or writings which may reflect adversely upon the Christian faith or this church. Blouses should not be cut too low. Shirts and blouses are to cover the midriff – no bare flesh is to be exposed. No see-thru shirts or blouses, or muscle shirts are to be worn.

2. Pants should not be tight-fitting

3. Shorts should not be worn by persons over 12 years of age. (Exceptions would be long, loose-fitting shorts or culottes worn at informal meetings such as share-group meetings, work days, or recreational activities.)

4. Skirts and dresses should not be too short.

5. Parents are to be guided by personal Christian discretion in supervising the dressing of their children of all ages and at all times.

NOTE: We understand that some of these policies are vague. However, covering all specifics is impossible. Certainly the principles of modesty and decency should be the concern of all Christians at all times, at church or elsewhere. We are therefore calling upon each member to be aware of his responsibility to self-government and judgment in these matters. However, if, in the estimation of the elders, these policies are being neglected or violated, the elders will point out the infraction.
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Policy #3

CONCERNING USE OF CHURCH BUILDING AS A TEMPORARY RESIDENCE

(Galatians 6:10; Titus 1:5)

Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church shall make its limited facilities available for residential purposes as the elders perceive the legitimate need for such use. The following policies will need to be understood and agreed to in order to use the church’s facilities.

1. The use of these facilities is a temporary arrangement. (The specific time period of use shall be determined by the elders.) Length of stay: ___________________

2. These facilities are used in multiple ministries by TRBC and should be treated as such. Guests shall refrain from smoking in the buildings. The use of alcohol or illegal drugs, having parties, or any other questionable activities which may have a negative reflection on the testimony of Christ or this church is prohibited.

3. Single men are not to have female house guests and single females are not to have male house guests. At all times guests are to avoid any appearance of evil, impropriety, or immoral conduct.

4. The facility in use is to be kept clean and neat at all times. In light of the fact that these are multi-use facilities and may be used at any time for church activities, guests are to see to it that the building is not only clean and straight but is also accessible at all times.

5. Church attendance is required for both Sunday and Wednesday night services. (Exceptions for work will be considered.)

I, the undersigned, understand and agree to the above-stated policies. If the elders determine that any of the above policies have been violated, it will result in my no longer being able to use the facilities, effective immediately.

_________________________________

Guest: Signed & Dated

_________________________________

Elder or Deacon: Signed & Dated
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Policy #4

CONCERNING CONDUCT AT CHURCH MEETINGS

(I Corinthians 11:34b; 14:33, 40; Colossians 2:5; I Timothy 3:14-15)

In keeping with the spirit of Christian order and respect taught in the Scriptures, and in keeping with our Covenant to be “exemplary in our deportment” and to “cultivate Christian courtesy,” the following rules of conduct should be observed in our services:

1. Concerning parents and their children:

a. TRBC provides a nursery for infants and small children up to five years of age. In order to advance the worship of God without distractions, we encourage parents with infants or small children to take advantage of our nursery facilities. There is also a nursing/sitting room for those who prefer not to have their children in the nursery. Access to the services are provided to this room through an intercom system.b. As God has placed children under the watchcare and authority of their parents, the parents should seek to be aware of their children’s whereabouts and conduct at church meetings. Parents should discipline their children by instruction and when necessary by correction when their behavior violates the following rules:

● running in the church building ● slamming doors ● climbing on furniture ● playing on the pianos without adult permission or supervision ● playing in the water (e.g., water fountains, bathrooms, outside faucets, etc.) ● throwing rocks, sticks, etc. ● or any other activities which would be disorderly, harmful, or destructive

2. Concerning worship services:

a. Seek to be on time for all worship services

b. Seek not to get up and leave the worship service once it has begun – Ten minutes will be provided between Sunday School and the Worship Service for personal needs

c. Seek to be quiet during worship services (Don’t rustle paper, do personal grooming, rattle keys, etc.)d. Seek to look forward (especially children) during the preaching of the Word

NOTE: We have deliberately used the word seek with regard to these matters since certainly there are unavoidable exceptions to these rules.

3. Concerning the sale of items at church (e.g., fund raisers and other business transactions): Please avoid using Sunday mornings for these purposes. If you find it necessary to do so, please do so privately and after the services.

4. Concerning expressing affection: There is a time and place for everything. In general, in the meetings of the church, expressions of affection should be avoided, especially among the unmarried.

5. Concerning Disorderly Conduct: No member or anyone from the general public has a right to interfere with the worship of God or otherwise to disrupt the services of TRBC. The elders, deacons, or those appointed by the church officers have the right to suspend or revoke the right of any person, including a member, from entering of remaining on the church property. (See Constitution, Section IV.04, E.)
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Policy #5

CONCERNING RESPONSE TO A DEATH

(Isaiah 61:1-2; I Corinthians 12:25-26)

In keeping with our Church Covenant “to aid each other in sickness and distress” and “to cultivate Christian sympathy and courtesy,” and “to comfort all who mourn,” (Isaiah 61:2) the policy of Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church shall be as follows concerning a death in the family:

1. The deacons (when requested by the family or the elders) shall oversee the notification of all church members (and others requested) of the death and funeral arrangements of members, members’ families, and friends of the church.

2. The deacons shall oversee sending flowers to the funeral home in the name of Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church.

3. The deacons shall be responsible for seeing to it that a card is sent to the church family affected and, where applicable, to the immediate family in which the death has occurred.

4. The deacons, when appropriate, shall organize to have food sent to the home of the grieving family. This function, along with 1, 2, and 3 above, may be delegated by the deacons to another person or other persons in the church.

5. When possible, the elders and/or deacons shall seek to visit the home of the grieving family.

6. The elders shall offer their counseling services to those who might be in need of them.

7. Church members and others may make memorial donations through TRBC to the following ministries:

● The TRBC Book Store. (Funds will be used to purchase Bibles, and other good literature to be distributed to schools, prisons, foreign countries, etc.)

● Foreign Missions

● Christian legal organizations

● Or other Bible-based organizations

8. Ordinarily, these policies shall apply to the following situations:

● Death in the immediate family of a church member, i.e., one living in the same household.

● Death of a parent or child of a church member.

● Exceptions to these two situations may be considered

9. Extraordinary situations may also activate these policies at the special request of a church member and/or at the discretion of the elders.

10. It is the responsibility of the one who has information on the death of a member, someone in a member’s family, or a friend of the church to contact the deacons or their designated representative.
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Policy #6

CONCERNING PASTORAL COUNSELING

(Psalm 23; Acts 6:3-4; 20:28; Romans 15:14; I Thessalonians 5:14; I Timothy 3:1-8; 4:12-16; I Peter 5:1-4)

Counseling is one of the several aspects of the ministry of God’s Word. The elders of TRBC therefore view counseling as vital in pastoring the flock of God. The elders (pastors) of TRBC are not professional counselors, licensed by the state. Each counselee will be informed of this prior to counseling. However, as servants of God, they seek to apply the truth and wisdom of God to every counseling situation.

In an effort to be good stewards of our time and energies, as well as to be genuinely helpful to those in need of help, the elders have established the following policies concerning the counseling ministry of our church.

1. Counseling shall be initiated by request of a church member, by request of a person outside the church, or at the discretion of the elders as they see the need. Premarital counseling will be required of any couple asking one of the elders of TRBC to officiate in their wedding.

2. Likewise, counseling may be terminated by the same means as listed in #1 above except for circumstances where church members come under the rules of church discipline found in the church constitution, under which a church member may not terminate pastoral counsel.

3. All counsel shall be based on Scripture alone.

4. If at all possible, there shall be two counselors present at counseling sessions, especially if the counselee is a woman. (Proverbs 18:17)

5. The elders pledge to maintain the confidence of the counselee among themselves with the following exceptions:

● Unrepentant church members who come under the rules of church discipline as found in the church constitution. In these cases it may become necessary for the elders to reveal information obtained in a counseling situation concerning the matter for which the person is being brought under the rules of discipline.

● A person who is unrepentant concerning immorality (e.g., theft, adultery, homosexuality, drunkenness, drug use, etc.). In these cases the elders may find it necessary, for the good of the counselee or others (e.g., spouse, children, society, etc.) to reveal information obtained in a counseling situation concerning these immoral acts as they affect others.

● A person who is planning to commit a crime or an immoral act (e.g., murder, abortion, suicide, theft, adultery, etc.). In these cases the elders may find it necessary, for the good of the counselee or others (e.g., family, church, or society), to reveal information obtained in a counseling situation concerning such plans.

6. Concerning counseling those outside the church, (in addition to the above stated policies) the following policies shall also apply:

● The first counseling meeting will be for the purpose of the evaluation of the counselee and his circumstances and to help with any immediate crisis.

● Should the evaluation by the elders determine that subsequent counseling is needed and should the counselee desire to continue being counseled, the elders shall require the following from the counselee:

▸ Regular attendance at Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church or some other Evangelical church for both Sunday morning services. This requirement applies so long as the counselee is under counsel by the elders.All homework assignments given to counselees are to be completed on timeExtenuating circumstances shall be taken into consideration by the elders.

7. Specific types of counseling provided by TRBC : Financial, Grief, Inter-personal conflicts, Marital, Pre-marital, Personal, Et. al.
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Policy #7

CONCERNING THE NEEDY (Deacons’ Fund & Benevolent Offering)

(Acts 2:44-46; 4:32-35; Ephesians 4:28; Galatians 6:10; James 1:27)

As a church of Jesus Christ we desire, when possible, to help those who have legitimate needs. Since we have limited resources and since God requires that we be good stewards of the things which He has given us, the following policies shall apply:

A. Concerning gifts to those who apply for them and who are outside the faith, as judged by a church officer:

1. These gifts will come from the Deacons’ Fund.

2. Those persons requesting assistance must provide valid identification, such as a current driver’s license.

3. Those persons requesting assistance may be required to provide additional verification concerning the legitimacy of their need.

4. Cash shall not be given to those requesting assistance. Rather, assistance shall take the form of direct benefits, such as food, clothing, shelter, gas, medicine, etc.

5. Benefits shall be given in exchange for the labor of those requesting the benefits, as Scripture requires.

6. A maximum of $80.00 per month is designated for this fund.

7. Benefits are not to exceed $20.00 per person.

8. Assistance to any one family or individual is not to exceed one time every six months.

9. Persons asking for assistance will be referred to other agencies if they can be helped by those agencies. (E.g., Salvation Army, Friendship Center, Randy Sam’s Shelter, Battered Women’s Shelter, and others.)

10. The Deacons shall maintain and manage the funds for the needy. They may, because of some unusual circumstances, make exceptions to the rules stated herein. Any exception to these rules must be approved by at least two church officers.

11. Other church policies not stated herein may apply to those requesting assistance.

B. Concerning those who are church members and other needy Christians:

1. Request must be initiated by the one in need or another person who knows of the need.

2. The need and our resources will determine the amount of the gift that shall be given.

3. The need may be met by direct monetary assistance or in another way approved by the elders and/or deacons.

4. Usually the need will be met from the Benevolent Offerings.
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Policy #8

CONCERNING THE PARTICIPATION OF WOMEN IN THE SERVICES OF TRBC

(Acts 18:24-26; I Corinthians 14:33-35; I Timothy 2:11-12)

It is realized that emotions can run high on either side of this issue. Some pastors and churches have advocated the absolute silence of women during the church services; others have refused to put any restrictions on women speaking in the services of the church. The elders of TRBC recognize that the various positions voiced in this church come from a sincere desire to uphold the teachings of the written Word of God.

Scripture is often unequivocal concerning its directives. At other times, however, it lays down only the parameters and principles of the matter (e.g., worship services, dress, manners, etc.). The Bible is clear that women may not teach or exercise authority over men in the services of the church. (I Timothy 2:11-12; I Corinthians 14:33-35) For sure, this church shall uphold these clear teachings of Scripture. On the other hand, Apollos was instructed in the faith by Priscilla and her husband Aquila. This instruction, however, was in an informal setting. (Acts 18:24-26) So it is that the Scriptural limitations concerning women and teaching seems to be restricted to the formal assembly of the church and the formal teaching positions, those positions in which one exercises authority.

Questions arise, however, concerning other specifics in this matter. The Lord requires that our worship be conducted decently and orderly. Other churches may follow a different order and yet not violate biblical guidelines. In other words, the specifics may vary from church to church and still honor the word of God.

The elders of this church, for the ordering of worship here at TRBC, establish the following policies concerning the participation of women in the services of TRBC:

1. Women may hold teaching positions in classes that instruct other women, girls, and boys who are under highschool age.

2. Adult Sunday School Classes: Women may not formally instruct the class when men are present. They may, however, respond to questions that are put to them by the class teacher. Also, they may ask questions for the purpose of information and clarification, but may not call into question the teacher or his teachings. (If she has a disagreement, let her address her husband or the teacher in private [I Cor 14:35]; single women may discuss these matters with the teacher or one of the elders.)

3. Worship Service on Sunday Morning: Women should seek to restrict their public speaking to hymn singing, responsive reading, and cooperate forms of worship.

4. Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting: Women may not lead a group prayer when men are present. However, they are encouraged to do so with other women. Also, the limitations of Adult Sunday School shall apply to the Wednesday night services, with the exception that women may make specific prayer request in the assembled congregation.

5. Judicial Proceedings: Women are free to speak before the congregation on their own behalf during judicial proceedings and may also speak before the congregation as witnesses in such proceedings.

6. Business Meetings: For voting rights of women see Section IV.04, A of Constitution. Women may not present a motion, second a motion, nor present a nomination. They may ask questions for information and clarification from the moderator and may respond to questions from the moderator.

NOTE: Women need not feel obligated to speak in any meetings of the church in which men are present. If a woman wishes not to be called upon in any of the public meetings of the church, she simply needs to inform the elders and they will grant her wish.

7. Forum for Female Input:

● Women are encouraged to seek information through their husbands.

● Women who are not married or whose husbands are not members, are encouraged to approach the elders if there are matters of concern which they believe have not been properly addressed.

● Before the March business meeting, the elders will meet at least once with the women who have no male representative in the church. This meeting will be for the purpose of acquainting women with the agenda for the upcoming business meetings and for the purpose of receiving their input on the upcoming meeting.
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Policy #9

CONCERNING LOAN FUND

(Galatians 6:10; Ephesians 4:28; James 1:27)

In seeking to fulfill our desire to serve, love and meet the needs of one another, a Loan Fund has been established at Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church. The following policies shall govern the administration and use of this fund:

1. The deacons and/or trustees shall maintain and manage the funds of the Loan Fund account.

2. Loans are restricted to church members, other than church officers, and, under special circumstances, to others whom the elders approve.

3. Loans for up to $500.00 and for up to 90 days may be approved by any deacon or elder.

4. Loans for amounts over $500.00 or loans extending longer than 90 days must be approved by at least two officers of the church.

5. No interest will be charged on any of these loans. However, contributions to the Loan Fund are encouraged, especially by those who use the fund.
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Policy #10

CONCERNING COMMUNICATING OUR NEEDS TO ONE ANOTHER

(Romans 12:13, 15; I Corinthians 12:24b-27; Galatians 6:2, 10; Ephesians 4:28; I Thessalonians 5:14; Hebrews 13:1-3; James 5:13-16)

The members of TRBC have a responsibility to help each other in times of need: to bear each other’s burdens; to pray for those who are sick and suffering; to show Christian charity to those who are in a time of deprivation; to comfort those who sorrow; and more. (Acts 6:1-5; Romans 12:13,15; I Corinthians 12:24b-27; Galatians 6:2,10; Ephesians 4:28; I Thessalonians 5:14; Hebrews 13:1-3; James 5:13-16) One thing that distinguished the First Church at Jerusalem was their concern for the needs of their members. (Acts 2:44-46; 4:32-35) In order to see to it that the needs of the members of TRBC are expeditiously met the following policies have been established:

1. It is the responsibility of the one in need to communicate that need to the other members of TRBC. (If we don’t know, we can’t help.)

2. The one having a special need, or anyone who knows of a special need, is to communicate that need to a designated contact person in our church. (No specific person will be named here since the contact person will change from time to time. The designee, however, will be named so that each person will know whom to contact.)

3. It will be the responsibility of the contact person to see to it that the elders, deacons, and other members of the church are aware of the need.

4. Examples of needs for which the contact person is to be notified follow:

● Sickness

● Being Hospitalized

● Death

● Accident

● Food

● Loss of Job

● Home burned

● etc.
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Policy #11

CONCERNING THE LORD’S DAY

(June, 2002)

(Mark 6:31; Acts 2:7; Romans 14:5-6; Colossians 2:17; Hebrews 4:1-10; Revelation 1:9-11)

When Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church was established back in 1978, we adopted as a statement of our faith, The 1689 London (Baptist) Confession of Faith. We believed then and continue to believe that it is the best statement of Christian Faith ever drawn up by men. We do not believe, however, that it is infallible. The very fact that it is a product of men renders it a fallible document. There are some things in the Confession that we are not certain of, that we think are matters of indifference, that we wish had not been left out, or that we simply believed are in error. These matters constitute a very small portion of the overall Confession. However, to prove ourselves honest in all things, we deemed it necessary to make the above statement and to give examples of the same. For example, we believe that believer’s baptism is a prerequisite to church membership and that the Confession should have thus stated. We do not believe that the Pope is the anti-Christ. He is an anti-Christ for sure, but not the anti-Christ. We are not certain that it is clearly taught in Scripture that “elect infants dying in infancy, are regenerated and saved by Christ through the Spirit.” Do only elect infants die? If all who die in infancy are elect infants, why not just state “infants dying in infancy” and leave off the word “elect”? We do not believe that the Scriptures are clear here. Also, we do not subscribe to what the Confession call “the Christian Sabbath.” (Chapter 22; Paragraph 7 & 8)

These are the most obvious examples of our concerns or disagreements with the Confession. We did not delineate them at that time when we adopted our church constitution, but simply stated, in Article III, that the 1689 Confession

“is a most excellent summary of things most surely believed among us. We accept the same, not as an infallible and authoritative rule or code of faith, whereby we are to be fettered, but as an assistance to us in controversy, a confirmation in faith, and a means of edification in righteousness.” (Constitution of TRBC, 1978)

Due to the fact that there has been some misunderstanding about certain issues, among which is our view of the “Sabbath Day” or Lord’s Day, we deemed it necessary to clarify our position on this issue. It would be fair to say that we do not believe that there is what the Confession calls “the Christian Sabbath,” that is, a day that has been formally set aside under the New Covenant to the observance of a strict, obligatory abstention from all “servile labor.” We do not find such a day appointed for Christians anywhere in the Word of God. The term “Sabbath,” found in both the Old and New Testaments, is consistently applied to the Jews’ day of rest, never to the Christians’ day of worship.

The obligatory Sabbaths of the Mosaic Law served a ceremonial purpose by pointing to a coming spiritual rest in Jesus Christ. Now that Christ has come, the outward observances which pointed to Him have been fulfilled, just as the shadows cast by an approaching object are “fulfilled” when the object comes into view (Colossians 2:17). Consequently, the literal keeping of the Sabbath Day should not be imposed on Christian consciences. Rather, the Sabbath law now speaks to Christians of their duty in relation to Christ. Since all believers have entered into spiritual rest by coming to Christ for salvation, (Matthew 11:8) we now “keep the Sabbath” by persevering in this spiritual rest throughout the present age as we hold fast to Christ by faith. We are called to bear Christ’s “easy yoke” and “light burden,” walking by the Spirit and abstaining from the works of the flesh, until we enter at last into the consummate rest of eternity. Then we shall receive our inheritance in full measure as we enter into the eternal Sabbath. To cease from resting spiritually during this present age, therefore, is to “break the Sabbath” (Hebrews 4:1-10).

At the same time, we recognize that Israel’s Sabbath law, like so many of the expired ordinances of the Mosaic Law, reveals principles of equity that continue to guide and instruct the Christian in his own walk before God. The Sabbath law reveals to us the importance of showing concern for the welfare of those who are under our authority by providing them with regular “refreshment” from their labor. We ought not to oppress inhumanly with work those who are subject to us. In most communities living under the New Covenant, the Lord’s Day has served as the ideal day, not only for worship, but also for this needed rest from the grind of earthly toil. Such a use of the Lord’s Day is in harmony with biblically revealed principles of righteousness. While God wants to see us working heartily (Colossians 3:23), He does not want our work to become a new idol (Mark 6:31). The institution of the Sabbath reminds us, therefore, of the necessity of taking regular rest ourselves, and of providing those under our authority with rest. Under the New Covenant, however, we are free to apply biblical principles in the exercise of Christian liberty, apart from external decrees that forbid labor on certain days or distinguish some days as “holier” than others (Romans 14:5-6).

In light of the differences that have existed for centuries among Reformed Christians in their understanding of the relationship between the Sabbath and the Lord’s Day – differences which are reflected in the historic creeds of the Reformation – we do not want this issue to become a test of fellowship with brethren whose beliefs may differ from our own. Perfect agreement in this matter may not be attained this side of glory, but we rejoice to acknowledge the fact that godly, committed believers are to be found on both sides of this issue. Surely both the Scriptures and church history would teach us to tolerate differences of convictions regarding the observance of particular days. (Romans 14:5-6)

Therefore, we encourage both “Sabbatarian” and “non-Sabbatarian” brethren alike to respect each other’s sincerely held beliefs, refusing to judge each other harshly, but rather, leaving all judgment to the Lord alone, before whom we stand or fall as His servants. (Romans 14:4)
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Policy #12

CONCERNING THE TRBC NURSERY, NURSERY WORKERS, AND NURSERY-AGED CHILDREN

(September 1, 2004)

(I Corinthians 14:40; Ephesians 6:1-4; Colossians 3:20)

Texarkana Reformed Baptist Church provides a Nursery for infants and small children up to five years of age. In order to advance the worship of God without distractions, we encourage parents with infants or small children to take advantage of our nursery facilities.

Our church also provides Sunday School classes for all children who are able to sit alone and pay attention to the teacher. This, for some children, begins as early as three or four years of age. The parents and Sunday School teacher will jointly determine if a particular child is mature enough to be in the Sunday School.

Children may be brought into the Worship Service, the second hour, at the discretion of their parents, between the ages of three and five. As a general rule, a child who has reached the age of five years will be expected to be brought into the worship service and sit with a parent or guardian. (There may be exceptions to this rule, if the parents so request and the elders agree to the exception.) With this in mind, parents are encouraged to bring their pre-five-year-old children into the “big church,” and to begin talking with them about the behavior that will be expected of them when they are in the Worship Service.

Nursery Workers will be provided for both the Sunday School hour and the Worship Service. At least two nursery workers, if possible and if necessary, will be provided for each hour. One of the workers must be at least 18 years of age. Girls who have reached the age of 18, who are not Christians, and whose parents are members of TRBC, may serve in the Nursery if they so desire and the parents agree. Special NOTE: Nursery Workers are to check to see if they are scheduled for the nursery each Sunday. If you are scheduled and are not able to be there, please switch with someone or find someone to take your place. Please do not leave it up to others to find a replacement for you on Sunday morning.

Children in the Nursery and Sunday School will be required to be respectful and orderly. The parents of any child who misbehaves will be contacted by the Sunday School Teacher or Nursery Worker. If necessary, parents will be called out of the Adult Sunday School Class or Worship Service to speak with their child and to correct the child’s misbehavior.

Our goal is to provide a safe and pleasant atmosphere in which children may learn the things of God. It is to that end that the above rules have been established.
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Policy #13

CONCERNING THE USE OF CHURCH FACILITIES FOR SPECIAL FUNCTIONS

(February 9, 2005)

Church members may request the use of the church facilities for special functions such as weddings, showers, etc. The use of the facilities for non-church functions must be approved by the elders. The requesting member will be responsible for the care, oversight, and cleaning of the facilities before, during, and after the function.The church facilities, as a rule, will not be rented for special functions by non-church members.
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Policy #14

CONCERNING THE RENTAL OF THE CHURCH HOUSE AT 1807 SOUTH STATE LINE AVENUE

(February 9, 2005)

TRBC purchased the property south of and adjacent to the property on which the church is built on South State Line Avenue. There is a two bedroom house on the property that may be used as rental property by the church. The deacons will administer the care of the property, including the rental of the house, under the oversight of the elders.What we do as a church is a reflection on the God we love and serve. We believe, therefore, that the behavior of the person or persons renting the house is a reflection on this church and on our God. Thus, anyone renting the house must sign the agreement below to abide by the following rules:

1. I shall keep the yard neat and uncluttered and the grass cut at all times

2. Not be involved in any illegal activities on the church property

3. Show respect to the neighbors by not having rowdy parties or playing loud music

4. Not have overnight house-guests of the opposite sex

5. Not be involved in immoral behavior of any sort

6. Abstain from the immoderate use of alcohol

7. Not use illegal drugs

8. Pay all the utility bills and rent on time

9. Abstain from any and all questionable activities which may have a negative reflection on the testimony of Christ or this church

The above rules are an expression of our desire, as a Christian Church, to follow the principles of Scripture in our service to God.

I, the undersigned, understand and agree to the above-stated policies. If the elders determine that any of the above policies have been violated, it will result in my no longer being able to use the facilities, effective immediately.

Guest: Signed & Dated ______________________________________________

Deacon: Signed & Dated___________________________________________
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Policy #15

CONCERNING THE RECEIVING, HANDLING, AND DISBURSEMENTS OF TITHES AND OFFERINGS RECEIVED BY TRBC

(January 1, 2006)

TRBC receives Tithes and Offerings from its own members as well as from others who choose to give to the ministry and work of this church. In order that the handling of our finances be done orderly and to provide things honest, not only in the sight of God, but of men, the following policies shall be enacted by TRBC.

CASH RECEIPTS

This includes all Checks, Money Orders, Bills, Change, and any other Cash coming into the church, either during the services, by mail, through the sale of literature, or in any other way in which the church receives cash.

RECORD OF CONTRIBUTIONS – Where the contributor is known, a record of each individual’s contributions made to TRBC will be kept by the deacons and will be made available to any contributor who wishes to see his record for accuracy and information. The record will be made available within fifteen days after the request is received in writing by one of the deacons. An annual record of contributions shall be made available to each known contributor, of his or her own contributions for the year, within thirty (30) days after the close of each year.

1. Cash received by Collection Plate during the Services: Two persons will be designated to pass the collection plate(s) for special offerings and on special occasions. After the collection is complete, the collection plate(s) will be placed at the front of the church in view of the congregation for the remainder of the service. At the end of the service, two men appointed by the elders or deacons, will count the money in each other’s presence. The money will then be placed in an envelope, sealed, initialed by each, with the type and amount of cash therein. The sealed envelope will then be given to the appropriate person, usually a deacon, for recounting, logging, and deposit in the bank. Deposits will be made within fifteen (15) days after receipt. Any discrepancy will be reported immediately to the designated elder or deacon.

2. Cash received through the Collection Box during the Services: A collection box will be conveniently placed for the regular receiving of tithes and offerings. The box will be secured by a lock during the services. All regular tithes and offerings will be placed in the collection box. At the end of the services, two persons designated by the elders or deacons will open the box and count the cash in each other’s presence. The money will then be placed in an envelope, sealed, and initialed by each, with the type and amount of cash therein. The sealed envelope will then be given to the appropriate person, usually a deacon, for recounting, logging, and deposit in the bank. Deposits will be made within fifteen (15) days after receipt. Any discrepancy will be reported immediately to the designated elder or deacon.

3. Cash received through the mail: Periodically TRBC will receive cash through the mail. (This is not a regular occurrence.) When a letter is opened by one of the elders or deacons – or any other member – that contains cash, the one opening the mail will immediately get in touch with another officer and the cash will be counted by both and recorded in the appropriate log. The money will then be placed in an envelope, sealed, and initialed by each, with the type and amount of cash therein. The sealed envelope will then be given to the appropriate person, usually a deacon, for recounting, logging, and deposit in the bank. Deposits will be made within fifteen (15) days after receipt. Any discrepancy will be reported immediately to the designated elder or deacon.

4. Cash received through the sale of literature: TRBC maintains a book- room for the sale of good books. These books are sold for the purpose of getting good literature in the hands of the people. We are not seeking to turn a profit. In fact, many books are simply given to those who have an interest in a particular subject. Periodically, the church transfers cash into the book-room fund. The buying and selling of books is left up to the book-room manager under the oversight of the elders. Books that are sold are listed in a ledger showing the person who bought the book along with the title, cost of the book, and the date purchased. The receipts shall be placed in an envelope – provided for the sale of books – and shall be placed in the collection box with the tithes and offerings until they are deposited. A separate account is reserved in the bank for books. Also, included in this account is money given for Jan Kay Ranch and the Spurgeon Fraternal. Receipts for each fund are commingled within the same bank account. Subtotals for each fund are maintained to distinguish the amount of receipts, deposits, and balance for each fund. The books shall be balanced each month.

CASH DISBURSEMENTS

Cash Disbursements, which include the paying of all church bills, the support of missionaries and charitable organizations, the buying of books for the book room, the purchasing of all equipment and supplies, and whatever other ministries and functions deemed necessary, shall be administered by the deacons, under the oversight of the elders.

1. Check-Writing Authority: Only those authorized by the elders shall have check writing authority. The names of those authorized and the accounts on which checks may be written are included in this Policy Manual on the page following this policy, Policy #15.

2. Authorized Disbursement: Only those ministries, services, equipment, supplies, and the like, designated by elders and/or deacons (and the church when any one particular item exceeds $2,000.00) shall be paid for or bought by TRBC. Designated disbursements are defined as those activities itemized in the annual budget which may be amended from time to time by the church.

3. Method of Disbursement: No cash, in the form of paper money (bills) or coins, shall be used in the paying of bills, in the various ministries of this church, etc. All bills, ministries, equipment, supplies, etc. shall be paid for by check.

4. Limitations in Disbursement: No checks shall be written that are payable to “Cash.” Checks shall be signed in advance only in the case of one officer giving the check to another officer. In such a case, the “Pay-To-The-Order-Of” line shall be filled in.

5. Record of Disbursements: A disbursement record will be maintained showing, in numerical check order, the date, check number, payee, and amount paid.
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