|Name *||Murice Watson|
|Church *||Brandon Church|
|Phone Number *||(561) 985-4994|
|Location *||Brandon/Tampa FL|
|Position *||Worship Leader|
|Position Details *||Must be able to lead music as well as those on your team.
Must be able to work in an Ephesians 4 team style ministry.
Must be able to work with ministry leaders.
This is an opportunity with houseing and other perks. Please send resume to email@example.com
|Name *||Vincent Collins|
|Church *||Agape WOrship Center International|
|Phone Number *||(803) 467-7829|
|Location *||Columbia SC|
|Position *||Music Minister|
|Position Details *||Serve as Music Miistry
Passion for Music Ministry
Lead and work well with people
Ability to play keyboard
Ability to sing and teach music
WHEREAS we believe that the triune God is the creator and the sustainer of the cosmos, and
WHEREAS according to the ancient Genesis narrative God surveyed His majestic work of creation (Genesis 2:15), a command for responsible stewardship that extends to all of God’s people, and
WHEREAS the Psalms declare that the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof (Psalms 24:1), and
WHEREAS the gospel of Jesus Christ stands in opposition to any and all forms of gnostic spirituality that deny God’s care for the physical world, and instead declares Jesus Christ to be the Lord over the whole earth, and
WHEREAS the Spirit of God himself groans in unison with the Creation for the revealing of the sons of God, and
WHEREAS the apocalypse of John envisions the day when God will complete the work He began in Genesis, where there is no barrier between the new heaven and the new earth as a whole revealing the complete restoration of creation, and
WHEREAS the historic witness of God’s church recognizes that “This is my Father’s world,” and
WHEREAS the creation itself is an extension of the goodness and governance of God, and
WHEREAS the apathy and indifference of much of the world’s population has produced unprecedented danger to the creation through shifting climate conditions, pollution, and insufficient quality and quantity of water among the world’s poor, therefore
BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God embrace the call once again to serve and protect God’s creation, and encourages its members to act with care, diligence, and responsibility towards the earth, and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Church of God supports any reasonable efforts to care for the earth in the name of Jesus Christ as a vital part of Christian worship and stewardship."
The recent decision by the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) to admit openly homosexual young men to their membership ranks comes as a major disappointment to the leadership of the Church of God. This departure from the BSA’s policy of not allowing individuals who practice homosexuality to become members contributes to the already confusing message of sexual orientation being sent to young men.
The Boy Scouts of America has served as a beacon of affirmation for generations. The May 23 decision by BSA did not include admitting homosexual scout leaders. We applaud the BSA leadership for upholding this critical element of its policy and support future efforts to defend it from attacks by groups who will no doubt feel empowered to further advance their agenda.
According to figures released by BSA, more than 70 percent of scout troops are supported or housed in churches across the United States. The recent action will no doubt place a heavy burden upon these churches about whether or not to continue their relationship with the local chapter.
The change in BSA’s policy in no way alters the Practical Commitments of the Church of God, which states the following:
Glorifying God in Our Body
Our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost and we are to glorify God in our body
(Romans 12:1, 2; 1 Corinthians 6:19, 20; 10:31). We are to walk in the Spirit and not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16).
Examples of fleshly behavior which do not glorify God are noted in several passages of Scripture (Romans 1:24; 1 Corinthians 6:9, 10; Galatians 5:19-21; Revelation 21:8). Sinful practices which are made prominent and condemned in these scriptures includehomosexuality, adultery, worldly attitudes (such as hatred, envy, jealousy), corrupt communication (such as gossip, angry outbursts, filthy words), stealing, murder, drunkenness and witchcraft…
The Church of God recognizes the dilemma some local churches and scout leaders may face with severing a positive, long-term relationship with a Boy Scout troop, which may or may not be immediately affected. Should local churches choose to disband their relationship with BSA, the Church of God has had in place for many years a program that mirrors the standards and policies of Boy Scouts of America prior to last week’s decision. It is called Royal Rangers and is available with supporting resources through the Division of Discipleship. Please visit www.royalrangerscog.org.
While the Church of God condemns the sin of homosexuality as defined in Scripture, individuals struggling with an alternate lifestyle will continue to be loved and discipled. As young people are constantly bombarded with one message from the church and another from culture, the Church of God is committed to those who may fall into this path to give counsel and to teach the forgiveness of Christ with the ultimate goal of redemption and restoration."
Legal issues continue to be a growing area of church affairs, necessitating familiarity with and resources for proper risk management.
Always remember that the farther away activities of a church venture from traditional worship and Bible study, the more the likelihood of potential legal ramifications. Churches are being sued for such activities as selling chicken dinners, sponsoring athletic events, and many other activities. As the number of ministry opportunities increases, so does the possibility that someone will try to find a legal angle from which to attack the church.
Necessity of Frequent Contact with a Lawyer - Some of the best advice that can be given to a pastor is to acquaint himself with and form an ongoing relationship with a local, reputable attorney. This relationship is important because the pastor can avail himself of the lawyer's expertise, before making a mistake with legal ramifications. It is always better to think preventatively rather than retroactively, and major decisions should not be made regarding the church or its business, without first contacting a lawyer.
In the state overseer field, developing a close relationship with a good local attorney is important because it provides for continuity in dealings between the lawyer and the church, and it provides him with ability to be familiar with our procedures, for posterity. In particular, a good local attorney who has been representing the state office for years can serve as a valuable counselor to any successors in office at our state offices.
Keep a good lawyer close by, and call him before you make big decisions.
Iif you would like to contact someone in our Legal Services Department please Click Here.
Note: To view PDF documents on this page you will need free Adobe Reader. Click here to download."
On January 26-29, 2010, the International Executive Council met in session at the International Offices in Cleveland, Tennessee where they reviewed and approved a report compiled from months of prayerful research. The report deals with decisions and recommendations regarding church finances and a re-structure of the ministries of the Church of God. The report, available in its entirety as presented to the Executive Council, is available for viewing and download, if desired. The report contains numerous charts, graphics and a look toward the future of the ministries of the Church of God based on past, current and upcoming financial states. It is recommended that you first view the explanation of the report by General Overseer Raymond F. Culpepper in the video provided.
Official Report from the International Executive Council
Appendix 1 - Tithe Receipts
Apendix 2 - Reports Received
Appendix 3 - Funding for Mission-Borderline States
Appendix 4 - Report on States That May Become Mission-Borderline in 5 years
International Offices Restructure
Note: You will need Adobe Reader to view these files. If you do not have adobe reader you can download it here.
On February 5-7, 2010, a delegation of leaders including General Overseer Raymond Culpepper and Assistant General Overseer Tim Hill journeyed to the earthquake-ravaged country of Haiti. The following two videos give an account of the excursion and an update on what is happening with the aid and recovery for the Church of God and our people in Haiti. Please view the updates as Part 1 and Part 2.
In 1992 the General Assembly declared one Sunday a year to focus on honoring those who have gone before us, blazing the trails of ministry through evangelism, pastoring and church planting. These saints of God are worthy of recognition and support and Reformation Sunday is the venue in which to do it. On October 31, 2010 every Church of God congregation is asked to designate a special love offering exclusively for aged ministers and widows.
In a recent letter to all pastors, Church of God General overseer Dr. Raymond Culpepper asked that this offering be given high priority this year, especially in light of the economic climate which has particularly affected aged and retired ministers. One-fourth of the offering will be used to help fund financial assistance to aged ministers with emergency needs. The remainder will be given as a special love gift from the church to retired ministers and widows at Christmas.
A special PowerPoint presentation has been developed for Reformation Sunday and is available for download on this page. Please feel free to use it as you promote this special day of commemoration for these warriors of the faith.
Download the PowerPoint Presentation"
On Saturday, January 8, as people were peaceably gathered to hear a speech from Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, a gunman opened fire on the crowd in Tucson, Arizona, killing six people and wounding many others.
Rep. Giffords was critically injured and clings to life with a bullet wound to her head. We join in prayer and sympathy for this public servant and we grieve with the families of the victims: John Roll, 63; Christina Taylor Green, 9; Gabe Zimmerman, 30; Phyllis Schneck, 79; Dorwin Stoddard, 76; and Dorothy Morris, 76.
There are 13 other victims who are recovering, including two of Rep. Giffords' staff, Ron Barber and Pam Simon. Please keep these who survived this tragedy in your prayers as well.
At this time I am reminded of the scripture from 1 Timothy 2:1-4 which says, I exhort, therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; 2 For kings and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. 3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; 4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth (KJV)."
--Raymond F. Culpepper"
The General Assembly took place July 27-30, 2010, in Orlando Florida.To visit the official website of the GA2010 please visit.
Watch the 2011 Engage Interview Video Here
Visit the Engage 2011 Website or Register Online Here"
Dr. Ray H. Hughes, Sr., was one of the most influential leaders within the Church of God of the past two generations. His life touched not just the Church of God, but the entire Evangelical and Pentecostal world as he led and ministered in numerous capacities. No single figure in the Church of God has cast a wider net of spiritual influence, educational leadership, or evangelical fervor.
Dr. Hughes passed away late in the evening on April 4th, 2011. This Web site has been created as a tribute to the man and the person who so dedicated his life to the Kingdom of God. Browse the links below and get a sense of how this dedicated servant of God became such a global influence, yet remained a humble family man.
Faith of My Father - read a chapter on the life of Ray H. Hughes, Sr., from the from the 2010 book "Faith of Our Fathers" written from the unique family perspective of his son, Ray H. Hughes, Jr.
Well Done, Thou Good and Faithful Servant – the complete obituary of Ray H. Hughes
Still Going Strong - watch a 5-minute video compiled for the occasion of Dr. Hughes' 80th birthday
Hughes' Leaves Educational Legacy in the Church of God - Article in Faith News
Hughes At A Glance – read an amazing list of leadership posts, awards and accomplishments from the life and ministry of Dr. Hughes.
The Complete Ray Hughes – visit the Web site www.rayhhughes.com and browse through all aspects of Dr. Hughes’ ministry career: view photos, hear sermons, read quotes, buy resources, and sign the guestbook."
The Reverend Doctor Ray H. Hughes Sr., 87, former General Overseer of the Church of God and past president of Lee University, went to be with the Lord on April 4, 2011.
Dr. Hughes began his ministry in 1940 and served in many offices of distinction in the Church of God and interdenominational ministries. His early ministry was as an evangelist, and he considered himself an evangelist no matter what office he was serving in. Hughes gained national attention in 1948 when he preached an interdenominational youth rally at the Hollywood Bowl in California. Sponsored by Pentecostal denominations and independent ministries, the event signaled a new day of cooperation among Pentecostals as well as his eventual leadership of the global Pentecostal movement. His pastoral ministry included the Church of God in Fairfield, Illinois, and the North Chattanooga Church of God. Appointed offices in the Church of God included state overseer of Georgia and the region of Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia; the National Sunday School and Youth Board; and director of the General Board of Education. He twice served as president of Lee College (1960-1966 and 1982-1984) and once as president of the Church of God Theological Seminary (1984-1986).
The Church of God elected Hughes as general director of Sunday School and Youth in 1952 where he served for four years, and to the International Executive Council in 1956 where he served for a total of thirty-six years. He was first elected to the International Executive Committee in 1966 and served on the Executive Committee a total of twenty-two years including the offices of Third Assistant General Overseer, Second Assistant General Overseer, First Assistant General Overseer and General Overseer. He is the only person to have served three tenures as General Overseer.
Along with his ministry in the Church of God, Hughes was frequently honored with leadership opportunities in interdenominational ministries. He was a member of the board of administration, on the executive committee, and president of the National Association of Evangelicals; a member of the National Sunday School Association; chairman of the Pentecostal Fellowship of North America; a member of the advisory committee of the Pentecostal/Charismatic Churches of North America; a member of the presidium and advisory committee, vice chairman and chairman of the Pentecostal World Conference. As chairman of the Pentecostal World Conference he led global meetings in Oslo, Norway, Jerusalem, and Seoul, Korea, where he preached to more than 108,000 people in a packed Olympic Stadium at the eighteenth Pentecostal World Conference.
Known for his powerful anointed preaching, Hughes was a popular speaker at camp meetings, ministers’ retreats, missions rallies, youth rallies, and other meetings. He was speaker for the Church of God’s radio broadcast, Forward in Faith, from 1960 to 1963. A prolific author, a partial list of his books includes Church of God Distinctives; Who Is the Holy Ghost?; Pentecostal Preaching; Religion on Fire; Lord, Show Us Thy Glory; The Cross, Love’s Necessity; and The Rapture and Revelation.
Dr. Hughes was preceded in death by his parents the Reverend J. H. and Emma Lou Cochran Hughes; his first wife, Marian Euverla Tidwell Hughes; and his brother-in-law, John Johnson.
He is survived by his wife Linda Redman Hughes; children, Janice Hughes of Nashville, Ray H. Hughes Jr., and his wife Anita, Donald Joseph Hughes, and his wife Maxine, all of Cleveland, and Anita Chamberlain, and her husband Jim, of Fernadina Beach, Florida; step-children, Jerry Redman, and his wife Jeanine, Greg Redman and his wife Debbi, and Kristi Armstrong and her husband Bob, all of Cleveland; grandchildren, Joe Hughes of Cleveland, Ray H. “Doc” Hughes III, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, Cristen Chamberlain, and Craig Chamberlain and his wife Elisa, of Fernandina Beach, Florida; step-grand children, Jennifer Redman of Chattanooga, Lindsey Armstrong, and Christian Armstrong, both of Cleveland; two great- grandsons, Chase Chamberlain and Landon Chamberlain, both of Fernandina Beach, Florida. He is also survived by his sisters, Helen Johnson of Huntsville, Alabama, and Jacqui Killebrew, and her husband Joe, of Bullhead, Arizona; brothers, Bill Hughes of Del Rio, Texas, and Dale Hughes, and his wife Brenda, of Cleveland; sister-in-law Florence Clawson, and her husband Rev. Paul Clawson, of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania; brothers-in-law U. D. “Bud” Tidwell Jr. and Marcus Tidwell; and several nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held Thursday, April 7 at 11:00 a.m.at the North Cleveland Church of God main sanctuary with Dr. Raymond F. Culpepper, Dr. Mark Williams, Pastor Mitch Maloney and Dr. Ray Hughes Jr. officiating. Interment will follow at Sunset Memorial Gardens with Rev. Ray Sanders and Dr. Gene Rice officiating. Paul Duncan, Jerry Dixon,
Dr. Esdras Betancourt, Rev. Marlon K. Allers, Steve Land, Ken Jones, Rev. Julian Robinson, and Rev. Charles Hollifield will serve as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers will be the members of the Church of God Executive Council.
The family will receive friends on Wednesday, April 6 from 3-8 p.m. at the North Cleveland Church of God Main Sanctuary.
Grissom Funeral Home has charge of the arrangements. To send an online condolence to the family, please visit www.grissomfh.net.
"But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come
upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and
in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth" (Acts
The baptism of the Holy Spirit is interwoven in our heritage. The Church of God holds the distinction of being the first known group in the United States upon whom the Spirit fell in Pentecost fullness. The power of the Holy Spirit to fulfill the missional mandate of Christ has been a doctrinal emphasis since the outpouring of the Spirit fell in the early days of our denomination.
God has given to us a distinct and beautiful heritage; one that causes us to give glory, honor, and praise Him. It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that we can live victoriously and expand the kingdom of God on earth.
Pentecost Sunday, June 12, provides an excellent opportunity to stress the full meaning of the power of the Holy Spirit, the doctrine of the Spirit, and the fruit of the Spirit in the ministry of the church.
This emphasis on understanding the requirements and the results of receiving the promise and power of the Holy Spirit is designed to achieve several objectives:
1. To focus attention on the roots and richness of our Pentecostal heritage.
2. To study about the power of the Holy Spirit in the operation of the church.
3. To stimulate a fresh awareness of the fruit of the Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit.
4. To create a hunger in believers to be filled with the Holy Spirit and to walk in the power of the Spirit.
5. To provide an environment for church members to share about the work of the Holy Spirit in their lives.
6. To guide young people in understanding the baptism of the Holy Spirit, how to receive the Holy Spirit and the manifestations of the gifts of the Spirit.
These studies offer an extraordinary opportunity to help believers understand the full range of the power of the Holy Spirit in the ministry of the church and in their daily
This action guide will give you ideas on outlining a Pentecost emphasis in your church. It does not giver detailed instructions but offers suggestions that can be
formulated to suit your local needs. Whatever approach you choose to take the central focus and goal is to lead your people into a deeper experience of the Holy Spirit baptism, the power it issues to live the abundant life in Christ, and the operation of spiritual gifts.
Five approaches or events to emphasize the power of Pentecost will be outlined. The particular items selected will have to be developed in regards to the size of the congregation, available leaders, and the spiritual needs of the local church.;
This will be a question and answer time for the entire congregation. There several ways to do this:
Utilize the book titled, Understanding the Holy Spirit, by Raymond F. Culpepper, general overseer. This book gives answers to all aspects of the power of the Holy Spirit and the operation of the Spirit in the church and in the life of believers.
Church members and friends have questions about the nature and work of the Holy Spirit but are often hesitant about seeking answers. The material in this book comes from the background of a church leader, our general overseer, who planted and pastored one church for 23 years. During this time he ministered to young converts who had no church background of understanding the work of the Holy Spirit. They had many questions that he answered from the Bible. Some of the questions/answers in the book
1. Who is the Holy Spirit?
2. How does the Holy Spirit relate to the Holy Trinity.
3. What are the works of the Holy Spirit in the believer's life?
4. What is meant by the terms Pentecostal, Charismatic, Third Wave?
5. Was the Day of Pentecost the first appearance of the Holy Spirit on earth?
6. What is the baptism in the Holy Spirit?
7. Does a person receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit at conversion.
8. How does a person receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit?
9. How does the Bible deal with the subject of speaking in tongues?
10. Did the practice of tongues go out with the apostles only to be revived in the 21st century by fanatics?
Information about the book, Understanding the Holy Spirit, is available by clicking on the book cover below, which will take you to the online Pathway Bookstore.
Congregation Submits Questions: The Sunday before Pentecost Sunday the congregation is invited to submit questions about different aspects of the ministry of the Holy Spirit. All the questions will be addressed by the pastor during the following Wednesday evening Bible study. The pastor can elaborate on each of the questions, recommend study materials, and tell how the power of the Holy Spirit can be the foundation for both personal growth and spiritual growth.
Wednesday Evening Panel Discussion. The panel would consist of three or four individuals. Each panel member would present an eight-to-ten minute paper on one of the following subjects relating to the power of the Holy Spirit.
1. Power of the Holy Spirit to Share Jesus.
2. The Power of the Holy Spirit in Molding Family Life.
3. The Power of the Holy Spirit in Living Victoriously.
4. The Power of the Holy Spirit in Fulfilling the Great Commission.
This can be a unique way to get church members involved in Bible study about the
Worship Service. The format of the service could include scripture readings about the Holy Spirit, songs/hymns, testimonies, responsive reading, and drama. Exercise creativity in arranging the structure to feature praise, instructions on the Holy Spirit and the power of the Holy Spirit for developing as a mature disciple, resisting the advancing of Satan, and expanding the influence and outreach of the church.
Sermon. The Pentecost Sunday sermon should highlight the power of the Holy Spirit in the life of believers; how He ministers as the Comforter, the Communicator, an Intercessor, the Revelator, the Glorifier, and the Equipper. Consider distributing outlines or featuring the main points on a large projection screen or on a marker board. The sermon could be divided into two parts, Sunday morning and Sunday evening.
This coming together can be a planned prayer time, a come-and-go event, or a time to pray to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Planned Prayer Time. The order of the service could include several segment of the power of the Holy Spirit in prayer—praying for city, community, nation, outreach of local church, parents, and children and youth. In between prayer segments there could be scripture reading and testimonies.
Come-and-Go Prayer Time. The church is open and members come and go after personal prayer for emphasizing the power of the Holy Spirit in the ministry of the
Prayer Time to Receive the Holy Spirit. This would be a time for individuals to pray to be filled with the Holy Spirit. The prayer time should include instructions and seekers should be paired with a seasoned church member as a prayer/seeking partner. The service is loosely structured, personal in approach, with soft music in the background.
This will be a special timer for me to focus on power—the power of the Holy Spirit in their lives as a companion, a father, a leader in the church, and an influence in the community. Use several men to tell about how the Holy Spirit impacts and empowers them to be effective in serving the Lord.
The format would follow the same pattern as the men's breakfast. Ladies would share
about how the Holy Spirit has given them power to live victoriously as a housewife, mother, friend, and church member.
The Planning. The planning for the Pentecost events can be simple or very elaborate. Planning, however, is vital and necessary. There should be a Planning Team that would outline the entire emphasis. Individuals could be assigned to direct each of the five outlined approaches.
Make arrangements for involving the congregations, providing, promotion in the church bulletin, and follow-up of assignments and arrangements.
Click on the book cover below to take you to the Pathway Bookstore for information on ordering the new release Understanding the Holy Spirit by Raymond F. Culpepper.
Below is a powerpoint presentation which is intended to be used as a teaching tool combined with Understanding the Holy Spirit. This volume offers answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about the Holy Spirit.
Download the Powerpoint Here
Several sermons can be downloaded from the Web site:
At the 73rd International General Assembly last summer, a resolution was passed recognizing the first 125 years of the Church of God.
Restoring God's Church Powerpoint
WHEREAS, on August 19, 2011, the 125th anniversary of the birth of the Church of God will be observed; and,
WHEREAS, from the eight individuals who responded to Richard G. Spurling’s invitation “to take the New Testament . . . for your only rule of faith and practice . . . and to sit together as the Church of God” has increased to 6,748,354 members around the world, with 34,848 churches; and,
WHEREAS, this historical occasion provides an opportunity for the entire Church of God family to remember the past, rejoice in the present, and renew our commitment to the future;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we remember our Pentecostal heritage, the faithful men and women who sacrificed and served to shape our Biblical values, and the flow of divine grace and gifts that formed the Church of God into a worldwide evangelistic force; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we rejoice for the guiding hand of our Lord on the Church of God, for establishing us as His blessed people, and for providing unlimited heavenly resources through prayer; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we renew our commitment to worship God in spirit and truth, to fulfill the missional mandate of the Great Commission, and to reflect a spirit of trust in every aspect of ministry; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we come together in a spirit of celebration and commitment on this 125th anniversary, that states/regions, and local churches outline events to remember, rejoice, and renew, reflect honor and glory to the Lord, and inspire new avenues to support the mission and vision of the Church of God.
WHEREAS our children live in societies troubled with high-risk problems; and
WHEREAS the world is in a period of transition that will profoundly and permanently affect the future of our children and grandchildren—a smaller world brought about by communication, political unification, and a free market; and
WHEREAS we are alarmed at the increasing rates at which children run away from home, drop out of school, experiment with drugs and alcohol, become involved in violent crimes, and suffer the dissolution of their homes by desertion and divorce;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we strongly emphasize character development among our children—self-esteem, drug prevention education, resistance to negative peer pressure, traditional family values, self-discipline for achieving goals, and acceptance of differences in others; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the values for this emphasis focus on honesty, truthfulness, generosity, kindness, courage, justice, and responsibility; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the foundation be the Word of God, the love of Jesus Christ, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the nurture of the church (65th A., 1994, p. 96).
WHEREAS, on August 19, 2011, the 125th anniversary of the birth of the Church of God will be
WHEREAS, from the eight individuals who responded to Richard G. Spurling’s invitation “. . .
to take the New Testament . . . for your only rule of faith and practice . . . and to sit
together as the Church of God . . .” has increased to 6,748,354 members around the world
with 34,848 churches; and,
WHEREAS, this historical occasion provides an opportunity for the entire Church of God family
to remember the past, rejoice in the present, and to renew our commitment to the future;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we remember our Pentecostal heritage, the faithful men
and women who sacrificed and served to shape our biblical values, and the flow of divine
grace and gifts that formed the Church of God into a worldwide evangelistic force; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we rejoice for the guiding hand of our Lord on the Church
of God, for establishing us as His blessed people, and for providing unlimited heavenly
resources through prayer; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we renew our commitment to worship God in spirit and
truth, to fulfill the missional mandate of the Great Commission, and to reflect a spirit of
trust in every aspect of ministry; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED the we come together in a spirit of celebration and commitment
on this 125th anniversary, that states and local churches outline events to remember,
rejoice, and renew and reflect honor and glory to the Lord and that inspire new avenues
to support the mission and vision of the Church of God.
WHEREAS God providentially birthed the Church of God as a community of believers to assist
in fulfilling the Great Commission; and,
WHEREAS, we now face great and complex challenges that demand that we not attempt to
survive with an attitude of business as usual; and,
WHEREAS God has blessed us to become one of the leading Pentecostal denominations in the
world and part of the divine work of the Spirit in these last days; and,
WHEREAS we are not immune from the difficulties faced by other denominations, some of
which are experiencing noticeable decline in membership and financial support; and,
WHEREAS the dangers of institutionalism and bureaucratic inefficiency are ever present,
and if left unchecked will restrict our resources and limit our efforts for evangelism;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT we reaffirm that the Church of God is committed to
remaining a movement that promotes policies and ministries that reflect an open, sincere
effort to remain relevant to each generation; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT we acknowledge God’s calling upon us to do our part to
fulfill the Great Commission and to bring spiritual renewal through the power of the Holy
Spirit to a world desperate for truth and significance; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED THAT we steadfastly resist those institutional trends and
behaviors that would inhibit our creativity, stifle our anointing, limit our vision, or reduce
our effectiveness in fulfilling the mission God has given us as a movement.
WHEREAS the Church of God is committed to obeying the Great Commission of Christ to make
disciples of all nations; and,
WHEREAS the international ministry of the Church of God began with the return of Edmund S.
and Rebecca Barr to their native Bahama Islands in November 1909; and,
WHEREAS the first Church of God American missionaries, R.M. and Ida Evans and Carl
Padgett departed from the United States of America on December 31, 1909, and arrived
in the Bahama Islands on January 4, 1910; and,
WHEREAS from this incipient ministry the Church of God now ministers in 181 countries and
geographical entities; and,
WHEREAS every six hours a new Church of God is planted somewhere in the world; and,
WHEREAS the membership outside the United States and Canada is approaching six million
baptized adult members with a constituency of twelve million when you include youth
and children; and,
WHEREAS this international ministry is the result of the labors of missionaries and nationals,
supported by the prayers and finances of members of the Church of God throughout the
WHEREAS the Church of God celebrated the World Missions Centennial with special
services in January 2010 in the Bahamas, and at this General Assembly;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that every Church of God office, agency, publication,
and congregation use this centennial celebration as an occasion to tell the story of our
missionary enterprise; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the Church of God enter its second hundred years of world
missions ministry looking with a renewed vision and full commitment to complete the
work of the Great Commission by sharing Christ with 70 designated unreached people
WHEREAS in our times there is an attempt to redefine all that Jesus taught and did in a
manner that other faiths are not offended or excluded and are thereby encouraged to feel
welcomed to participate in our worship; and,
WHEREAS the call to be inclusive of other faiths and the removal of doctrinal propositions so as
to be non-offensive deliberately ignores the goals of preserving orthodox Christianity and
orthodox Christian doctrine; and,
WHEREAS Christian doctrine is being marginalized and its predominance cheapened by this
diversion from absolute truth; and,
WHEREAS there are those seeking to create Christian communities in post-modern cultures, not
based on historical Christian beliefs but rather on new dogmas, philosophies, ideologies,
and radical relativism which are all diametrically opposed to the substantive teachings of
the Holy Scriptures; and,
WHEREAS we have historically practiced “believing” and then “belonging,” and there are
those who now advocate and practice “belonging” and then “believing” based on
radical relativism, ecclesiastical paradigm shifts, and an evident disregard for sound
hermeneutical and exegetical principles of interpretation that historically have guided in
the declaration of biblical doctrines and beliefs; and,
WHEREAS at the core of these salient assaults on our beliefs and doctrines at this time is the
attempt to divest Christ of His deity by identifying Him as a mere historical figure,
devaluing Him to just a moral individual to be emulated, and in some circles discrediting
Him by falsely labeling Him an amoral person, so as to erroneously expect and anticipate
avoidance of accountability for sins and the judgment of God;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT in light of the biblically explicit teaching on the deity
of Jesus Christ, we hereby affirm that the historical, doctrinal position of the Church of
God remains irreversibly that Jesus Christ is indeed God; and,
BE IT THEREFORE FURTHER RESOLVED THAT because our position is corroborated by
Jesus’ preexistence (John 1:1), His sharing in divine purposes and activity (John 1:3), and
His possession of divine attributes and prerogatives (Revelation 1:8), we unequivocally
reaffirm our position that Jesus is God incarnate (Titus 2:13, 14); the Son of God
(Ephesians 1:3); the Second Person of the Trinity (Matthew 28:19); Savior of the World;
Redeemer; Sanctifier; Healer; Holy Ghost Baptizer; and Soon Coming King.
BE IT THEREFORE FINALLY RESOLVED THAT our ministers and lay constituents make
it a matter of urgency to reiterate, reaffirm, and proactively engage and transcend the
culture by the systematic preaching and teaching this core belief of the deity of Christ, as
clearly stated in our Declaration of Faith.
WHEREAS God has called us to be a mosaic of God’s creation that enables us to embrace racial,
cultural, and linguistic differences; and,
WHEREAS Scripture explicitly states that there is no distinction between Greek and Jew,
circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, and freeman, but Christ is all,
and in all (Colossians 3:11); and,
WHEREAS God’s people are ultimately not citizens of any one nation or country but of a king--
Jesus and a kingdom—the Kingdom of God; and,
WHEREAS the word of God embraces and encourages racial reconciliation and the healing and
forgiveness of past sins and hurts; and,
WHEREAS the promise of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit was to all flesh, all races, and all
WHEREAS the Pentecostal experience introduced possibilities for the formation of a new
community that was to be multi-racial, multi-cultural, and multi-lingual; and,
WHEREAS every part of the body of Christ is just as important as the other parts and are
ordained by God to have a place at the table, a voice in the conversation, and a hand in
the action; and,
WHEREAS the Church of God has experienced phenomenal growth in other nations and among
other cultures both inside and outside of the United;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT we commit ourselves globally to continue to
intentionally build cross cultural relationships and continue to seek and embrace inter-
racial inclusiveness; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT we manifest multi-cultural awareness and unity in
concrete policies and behaviors that seek to provide ecclesiastical structures that reflect
multi-cultural leadership and provide multi-cultural, multi-language resources, so that the
body of Christ can participate in and be enriched by the contributions of each cultural and
WHEREAS the word “church” (ekklesia), by definition, primarily refers to the local
congregation of “called-out” believers; and,
WHEREAS one of the great gifts of Christ to the church is the pastor—the shepherd of the sheep
who compose the local congregation of believers; and,
WHEREAS Jesus warned that Satan, as a “ravening wolf” disguised in “sheep’s clothing”
(Matthew 7:15), will intentionally strive to destroy the work of the shepherd by coming
as a thief “to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (John 10:10); and,
WHEREAS Jesus told His disciples, “A new commandment I give unto you, That you love one
another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another” (John 13:34); and,
WHEREAS the New Testament in several other passages specifically instructs the members of
the body of Christ, His church, to “love one another;”
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT we reaffirm our commitment to the challenge of being
a church that genuinely cares for one another and to our priority statement that, “The
Church of God recognizes the local church as the foundation of all ministry activities and
will renew efforts to acknowledge, affirm, strengthen, and support the central importance
of the ministry of the local church;” and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT leadership at all levels of the church encourage and teach
local congregations how to provide quality support and care for their pastor and his/her
family by providing comfortable housing, adequate compensation, periods of rest and
relaxation, and retirement security.
WHEREAS the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative, sponsored by the Pentecostal Theological
Seminary’s Center for Pentecostal Leadership and Care, has made a significant, positive
impact on hundreds of Church of God pastors; and,
WHEREAS the excellent program of care, support, and development available to Church of
God pastors through the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative has been described by Lilly
Endowment officers as “the shining star” of its similar grant-supported projects; and,
WHEREAS the pivotal point of the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative is to honor and develop
the pastor by providing ongoing supportive relationships in a group context that
empowers the pastor to be open and supportive of other pastors by sharing his or her
own experience rather than always looking to “experts;” and,
WHEREAS research funded by Lilly Endowment concluded Church of God pastors involved
in the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative lead congregations that are more missional,
more active in their communities, more participatory in nature, have more vital youth
ministries, and report 61% growth over the last five years; and,
WHEREAS Church of God pastors identified the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative in
the recent “Listening Tour” forums as one of “the most positive programs in the
WHEREAS the Church of God has demonstrated denominational support for the Pastoral
Covenant Group Initiative by investing in the psychological health, emotional well-being,
spiritual renewal, and continued growth of Church of God pastors and their spouses; and,
WHEREAS the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative is in its eighth year of implementation,
making it one of the longest-running Lilly Endowment-funded projects of its kind; and,
WHEREAS approximately 1,000 U.S. Church of God pastors are currently meeting monthly in
Pastoral Covenant Groups; and,
WHEREAS the first sixteen Pastoral Covenant Group Facilitators have been trained for eight
South American countries this past year;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT we applaud the visionary leadership and creative
program development of the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative, and offer continuing
support for the Center for Pentecostal Leadership and Care staff of the Pentecostal
Theological Seminary; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT the Pastoral Covenant Group Initiative be continued and
expanded to provide value for pastors, congregations, state leadership, and the mission of
the Church of God, and positive efforts made to sustain this ministry for the present and
future welfare of the church.
WHEREAS, the parting charge of Jesus Christ to the Church embodies going into all the world,
sharing the redemptive message of God’s love, baptizing converts, and guiding believers
in biblical maturity; and
WHEREAS, visionary, obedient involvement in the Great Commission represents the lifeline of
the church, the flow of supernatural manifestations, and the enriching, transforming fruit
of the Holy Spirit; and
WHEREAS, every local Church of God has the capacity to influence the life of the community,
touch the unchurched with the love of Christ, and minister with tenderness to the helpless
and hopeless; therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED, that the entire Church of God family reaffirm our total, unreserved
commitment to understanding the scope of the Great Commission and the essential
structure necessary for superior evangelism performance; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that every local church embrace a comprehensive plan to
guide adults and youth in personal soulwinning, to sponsor life-related outreach events to
impact unchurched families, and to form a love-circle to mentor believers in following in
the steps of Jesus Christ, our Savior and sustainer.
WHEREAS, prayer was a foundational pillar in the very beginning of the Church of God and
has undergirded our mission and message throughout the years; and
WHEREAS, our churches have been characterized as houses of prayer for all nations and all
peoples to experience the fullness of God’s divine favor and his protective oversight and
WHEREAS, through prayer we are issued the sustaining resources to be effective in fulfilling
the Great Commission, making disciples, and worshipping in spirit and truth; therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED, that we make prayer the central focus in maintaining unity and harmony in
the body of Christ to fulfill God’s perfect will for His people; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we continue to emphasize that prayer is the power of
the Church for the advancement of the kingdom of God with compassion and authority;
prayer equips believers to live God-honoring lives, to model the virtues of Christ-
likeness, and to give effective witness to the saving grace of Jesus Christ through the
power of the Holy Spirit.is
Whereas, global poverty has reached alarming proportions, with 1.2 billion people living
on less that US $1.25 a day with little or no access to the basic services of nutrition,
health, and education; and,
Whereas, in 2000 the leaders of the governments of the world made promises to halve
extreme poverty by 2015; and,
Whereas, Holy Scripture is comprehensive and compelling in its mandate to “do justice,
love mercy and walk humbly with God” (Micah 6:8); and,
Whereas, a partnership of Evangelical and Pentecostal churches has set the goal of uniting
100 million Christians in prayer and action on global poverty;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED:
That we reaffirm our intention to follow the supreme example of Jesus, Lord of the Church,
who proclaimed, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me
to preach the good news to the poor…to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and
recovery of sight to the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of God’s
favor” (Luke 4:18-29); and,
Be It Further Resolved That, we call upon the governments of the nations represented by
the international constituents of the Church of God to honor their promise to halve
extreme global poverty by 2015, holding them accountable to act with integrity and
justice on behalf of the poor.
WHEREAS, the biblical injunction, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on
your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight
your paths” (Proverbs 3:4 ESV), is a lifestyle pattern to please God and to conform to His
will and purposes; and
WHEREAS, the quality of pastoral and congregational trust can be expanded through
understanding biblical roles, open dialogue about Christ-exalting ministry, and a
commitment of scriptural loyalty to each other; and
WHEREAS, a renewed emphasis on creating a stronger degree of trust in the community toward
the Church can be achieved through love-based service, social projects, and life-enriching
activities and projects; therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED, that we come together in a covenant of trust that will shape our faith and
form a foundation for new experiences in serving God, serving each other, and serving
the community; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we make a united commitment to the formula of
Prayer—the heartbeat of the Church, the Great Commission—the solution, and the
Quest for Trust—the anchor for the future, to guide us in fulfilling our mission and
WHEREAS there is a critical need to plant churches within the Church of God because it honors
God and spreads His fame among the nations; and
WHEREAS one of the urgent needs of today within the Church of God is to reach the harvest
and our periods of greatest numerical growth have corresponded with direct efforts in
church planting; and
WHEREAS church planting translates God’s love into the heart language of people groups all
over the world and we must rise to the challenge and establish new, vibrant congregations
among all cultural groups; and
WHEREAS new churches are essential to God’s strategy to reach unreached people who have no
near-neighbor to tell them the story of Jesus’ love; and
WHEREAS the goal of church planting is to extend the Kingdom of God into territory
previously occupied by the enemy; and
WHEREAS in order for a new church to survive and flourish it is essential that the church
planter receives supervision, support, and accountability.
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED:
THAT the Church of God focus its efforts on the task of planting new churches.
Our commission has never been clearer, more urgent, or more hopeful.
WHEREAS, the women of the Church of God have been a major influence on the stability and
growth of the church worldwide; and
WHEREAS, today women are a mighty force in fulfilling the Great Commission through prayer,
teaching, making disciples, and setting a godly example for the youth of the church; and
WHEREAS, the role women in the ministry of the Kingdom of God, the local church, and the
General Assembly has been discolored by the remarks of some speakers during general
council sessions; therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED, that we reaffirm the value and the historical contribution of women in the
life of the Church of God; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that more leadership opportunities be offered for women in
leadership in light of their spiritual gifts and to establish a foundation for the future
involvement, training and recognition of young women growing up in the church; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we commend them for their crucial involvement in the total
scope of the ministry in the Church of God today; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we set in motion methods to highlight their dedication and
to honor them for their loyalty, leadership, and love for the Lord and the Church of God.
Church of God Legal Services
Blake A. Payne, Esq. Attorney at Law Bankhead-Byars
Building 1816 3rd Avenue S, Suite 101
P.O. Box 3134
Jasper, AL 35502-3134
Phone: (205) 221-4660
Fax: (205) 221-4652
Daniel S. Wolter, Esquire
Gaines, Wolter & Kinney, PC
3500 Blue Lake Drive
Birmingham, AL 35243
John M. Lassiter Jr., Esquire
2500 Dauphin Street
Mobile, AL 36606
Joseph C. Denison, Sr. and Candace E. Winter Denison
Denison & Denison, PC
1621 Deer Tract Road
Opelika, AL 36801
Floyd L. Likins, Esquire
214 North College Street
Auburn, AL 36860
L.D. Holt, Esquire
PO Box 27
Minette, AL 36507
Thomas P. Amodio
Amodio Stanley & Reeves, LLC
500 L Street, Suite 300
Anchorage, AK 99501
Scott S. Wakefield, Esq.
Ridenour Hienton, P.L.L.C.
201 North Central Avenue, Suite 3300
Phoenix, AZ 85004
Phone: (602) 254-9900
Fax: (602) 254-8670
Michael J. Woodruff, Esquire
205 Carrillo Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Wendi J. Kemp, Attorney
McCarter & English, LLP
185 Asylum Street. 36th Floor
Hartford, CT 06103-3495
G. Daniel Miller, Esquire
Conner & Winter, PC
1627 I Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006
F. Robert Radel, II, Esquire
Butler Pappas, LLP
One Harbour Place
777 S. Harbour Island Blvd, Suite 500
Tampa, FL 33602
Robert J. Angerer, Esquire
PO Box 10468
Tallahassee, FL 32302-2468
John B. White, Esquire
1921 Ascott Road
N. Palm Beach, FL 33408Phone: 772-341-3388
Jon V. Forehand, Esquire
Allen, Forehand & Adams, LLP
PO Box 1687
Moultrie, GA 31776-1687
Phone: (229) 985-3912
Fax: (229) 890-3341
Lee B. Perkins, Esquire
305 Buckhead Avenue, Suite 201
Atlanta, GA 30305
Lynwood A. Maddox, Jr., Esquire
Maddox and Maddox
1455 Lincoln Pkwy East
Atlanta, GA 30346-2209
Wendell R. Bird, Esquire
Bird & Loechl, LLC
3414 Peachtree Road, NE
1150 Monarch Plaza
Atlanta, GA 30326
Daniel Deems, Esquire
PO Box 2943
Cartersville, GA 30120-1700
Thomas Williams, Esquire
305 W. Crogan Street
Lawrenceville, GA 30245
Stan D. Babb, Esquire
Postic & Babb, LLC
707 Whitlock Avenue
Whitlock Park Center, Suite D-31
Marietta, GA 30064-3033
Lionel J. Postic, Esquire
Postic & Babb, LLC
707 Whitlock Avenue
Whitlock Park Center, Suite D-31
Marietta, GA 30064-3033
Jon V. Forehand, Esquire
Allen & Forehand
622 2nd Street, SE
PO Box 1687
Moultrie, GA 31776-1687
Christian Coomer, Esquire
PO Box 3574
Cartersville, GA 30120
Richard B. Herzog, Jr., Esquire
Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP
999 Peachtree Street, NE
Atlanta, GA 30309-3964
Ward P. Fisher, Esquire
1033 N. Euclid
Oak Park, IL 60302
Douglas Chartrand, Esquire
2055 Orchard Lake Road
Pontiac, MI 48320
Brien G. Freeman, Esquire
Freeman, Copeland & Childers
201 S. Main Street
Corbin, KY 40701
Richard V. Murphy, Esquire
250 W. Main Street, Suite 301
Lexington, KY 40507
Leroy A. Hartley, Esquire
1805 Esplanade Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70116
Gary M. Peltier, Esquire
Attorney at Law
15828 Professional Plaza
Hammond, LA 70403
T. Allen Usry, Esquire
Usry, Weeks & Matthews
1615 Poydras Street
New Orleans, LA 70112
Patricia A. Garcia, Attorney at Law
PO Box 24098
New Orleans, LA 70184-4098
Bryan Hyre, Esquire
Lessans, Praley, & McCormick
7419 Baltimore-Annapolis Blvd.
Glen Burnie, MD 29160-3592
David Raish, Esquire
Ropes & Gray, LLP
One International Place
Boston, MA 02110
Witold Sztykiel, Esquire
Bigler, Berry, Johnston, Sztykiel & Hunt
1301 West Long Lake Road, Suite 250
Troy, MI 48098
Robert L. Loesch, Esquire
32279 Cross Bow
Birmingham, MI 48025
Hubert V. Forcier, Esquire
Faegre & Benson, LLP
2200 Wells Fargo Center
90 South Seventh Street
Minneapolis, MN 55402-3901
Gregory L. Harper, Esquire
Sanford & Harper
3 Country Place
Pearl, MS 39208-6662
Michael W. Boyd, Esquire
809 Main Street
Greenville, MS 38702
Richard Hammar, Esquire
The General Counsel of the Assemblies of God
1445 Boonville Avenue
Springfield, MO 65802
J. Michael Riehn, Esquire
Law Offices of J. Michael Riehn, PC
301 West 8th
Cassville, MO 65625
Mike Milodragovich, Esquire
Milodragovich, Dale, Steinbrenner & Binney, PC
PO Box 4947
Missoula, MT 49806-4947
Michael J. Lilly, Esquire
Berg, Lilly & Tollefsen
1 West Main
Bozeman, MT 59715
Gary M. Jeffas, Esquire
20 Davis Avenue
Kearny, NJ 07032
Nicholas T. Menas, Esquire
Cooper Levenson April Niedelman & Wagenheim, PA
1125 Atlantic Avenue
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
Peter C. Cotelidis, Esquire
Attorney at Law
200 Old Country Road, Suite 190
Mineola, NY 11501
Edward E. Hollowell, Esquire
5511 Capital Center Drive
Raleigh, NC 27606
Frank A. Hirsch, Esquire
Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP
GlenLake One, Suite 200
4140 Parklake Avenue
Raleigh, NC 27612
Stephen A. Humsjo, Esquire
8 Greenwood Avenue
PO Box 479
East Islip, NY 11730
James B. Hadden, Esquire
Porter Wright Morris & Arthur, LLP
41 South High Street
Columbus, OH 43215-6194
Bill W. Cummins, Esquire
Law Office of Bill W. Cummins Co.
105 Court Stret
Hamilton, OH 45011
J. Jeffrey McNealey, Esquire
Porter, Wright, Morris & Arthur
41 South High Street
Columbus, OH 43215
Robert E. Cowan, Esquire
Gibbs Armstrong Borochoff
500 Petroleum Club Building
601 South Boulder Avenue
Tulsa, OK 74119
Gary E. Payne, Esquire
Gary E. Payne, Inc.
11212 N. May, Suite 205
Oklahoma City, OK 73113-0578
Carol B. Ervin, Attorney
Young Clements Rivers, LLP
PO Box 993
Charleston, SC 29401-0993
Thomas A. Bright, Esquire
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, PC
PO Box 2757
Greenville, SC 29602
J. Kevin Crain, Esquire
Young, Clement, Rivers & Tisdale, LLP
28 Broad Street
Charleston, SC 29401
David E. Simpson, Esquire
125 Hampton Street, Suite 102
Rock Hill, SC 29730-3595
Ronnie J. Treadwell, Esquire
510 E. Calhoun Street
Anderson, SC 29621-5805
Stephanie Holmes Burton, Attorney
Gibbes Burton, LLC
308 East St. John Street
Spartanburg, SC 29302
James W. Logan, Jr., Esquire
Logan Jolly & Smith, LLP
1805 North Blvd.
Anderson, SC 29621
Harvey L. Sproul, Esquire
Sproul & Hinton
205 East Broadway
Lenoir City, TN 37771
Josiah Baker, Esquire
W. Joseph Hollis, Jr., Esquire
Baker, Kinsman, Hollis, Clelland & Winer, PC
1500 First Tennessee Building
701 Market Street
Chattanooga, TN 37402-4825
Michael E. Callaway, Esquire
Bell & Associates, PC
PO Box 1169
Cleveland, TN 37364-1169
Jimmy W. Bilbo, Esquire
Logan, Thompson, Miller, Bilbo & Thompson
PO Box 191
Cleveland, TN 37364
Rick Pemberton, Esquire
PO Box 5243
Sevierville, TN 37862
Dennis W. Watkins, Legal Counsel
Church of God International Offices
PO Box 2430
Cleveland, TN 37320-2430
James F. Logan, Esquire
Logan, Thompson, Miller, Bilbo & Thompson
30 Second Street
PO Box 191
Cleveland, TN 37364-0191
John R. Bode, Esquire
Miller & Martin
Suite 1000 Volunteer Bldg.
832 Georgia Avenue
Chattanooga, TN 37402-2289
Willard W. (Bill) Watts, Esquire
PO Box 2982
Cleveland, TN 37320
J. Dewayne Bunch, Esquire
443 Worth Street, NW
Cleveland, TN 37311
J. Michael Sharp, Esquire
Varnell, Burns & Sharp, PC
175 Spring St. NW
Cleveland, TN 37311
Jim Bilbo, Esquire
Bilbo Law Office
PO Box 62
Cleveland, TN 37364
Phone: (423) 476-3556
Fax: (423) 476-3551
J. Shelby Sharpe, Esquire
Sharpe Tillman & Melton
6100 Western Place, Suite 1000
Fort Worth, TX 76107
Earl R. King, Esquire
2110 Fort Worth Highway
Weatherford, TX 76086
Julie L. Bloss, Legal Counsel
Southern Baptist Annuity Board
2401 Cedar Springs
PO Box 2190
Dallas, TX 75221-2190
Gary S. Nash, Esquire
Attorney at Law
7557 Rambler Road
Dallas, TX 75231
Paul H. Williamson, Esquire
Burdett, Morgan, Williamson & Boykin, LLP
3423 S. Soncy Road, Suite 300
Amarillo, TX 79119
L. Darlene Mitchell
Attorney at Law
Burt Barr & Associates, LLP
203 East Colorado Boulevard
Dallas, TX 75203
Listing of the attorneys above does not constitute an endorsement or warranty as to their services. If you as a Church of God constituent or minister have any experience, positive or negative with any of the above attorneys, and you think that we should know about it, please advise.
This area is of course a very fertile area for lawsuits against churches in our day. The very best materials on this subject, in my opinion, are provided under the name Reducing the Risk – Keeping Your Ministry Safe from Child Sexual Abuse and are marketed by Christianity Today International, 465 Gundersen Drive, Carol Stream, IL 60188; toll free number: 877-247-4787; website: www.reducingtherisk.com.
The above course points out the four basic areas of need in preventing problems in this area:
1. Screening for paid and volunteer workers. Remember, apply a six-month rule for all workers.
2. Supervision Make sure two adults are in classrooms with children, at all times, and that your
church has windows in all doors and other areas.
3. Reporting This is a very major issue for many ministers confronted with certain news or
information about alleged abuse. It is very important to know if your state has a rule limiting
a certain period of time in which you must report an allegation of sexual abuse. If you are not
aware of same, or if an allegation arises in your church, please contact us, so that we can refer
you to an attorney to provide you assistance in this area. Not reporting an alleged incident of
child abuse in your state can result in serious penalties against you or the church.
4. Responding properly to an allegation of child sexual abuse is also very important.
Once again, the Reducing the Risk seminar contains an excellent video, as well as written
materials and sample forms for dealing with this issue.
Insurance is without a doubt the most important issue we can cover, because a church that thinks" it is insured but is not insured or is under-insured, is going to face some serious problems. Particularly, insurance is valuable because most policies cover for defense costs, which can range in the thousands of dollars, even for a frivolous case.
The following questions are very important in determining your insurance:
1. Who is your carrier? Does this carrier routinely insure churches, on a broad scale?
2. In case of a fire loss, is your building insured for full replacement costs? In the alternative, in the event of a fire loss, is your church insured to value?
3. In case of a fire loss, does your church's policy have a co-insurance penalty? Most policies state that in the event of a fire loss, if your building is not insured at least up to a certain percentage (usually 80-90%) of the fair market value or actual replacement value of your building, at the time of the loss, there may be a penalty involved. This means that you may have less insurance coverage than you think in the event of catastrophic fire loss.
4. Does your church's policy have non-owned and hired auto/vehicle coverage for your church? This coverage allows a person who is on church business or in the furtherance of church activities, who is driving a vehicle not owned by the church, to have insurance coverage in the event of an accident. However, you must have the right clause in your policy.
5. Does your church's insurance policy have a sexual misconduct endorsement?
6. If you have employees, have you complied with state laws regarding workers compensation insurance? This includes church schools and day cares.
We cannot stress enough how important it is that you understand what type of liability and other insurance coverage that you have available to your church. Be sure to ask your agent what exclusions apply to your policy."
The counseling area is a persistently problematic area, and there are surprising statistics of admitted improprieties by ministers in a counseling setting.
Be sure to note that the term counseling has been given broad definition by some courts, including, but not limited to, a telephone call, tarrying after church, talking to a minister, or a young person talking to a youth pastor.
Be sure that you study some good sources on counseling, to understand some boundaries about counseling.
The main point that should be made about counseling is that our ministers must make their counseling spiritual, unless the minister is a licensed professional. Spiritual counseling is defined as based on an understanding of scripture, and not rooted in psychotherapeutic principles.
Be sure that the person you are counseling with understands that you may have to disclose certain facts told to you, such as commission of crimes or a child abuse. Also, counseling should be done only during church hours, with others there. Sessions for counseling should not last over 45 minutes, and the number of sessions a year should be limited.
If one of your ministers sees that he is over his head in a counseling relationship, he should get out of that relationship as soon as possible and refer that person to a qualified and trained professional.
This area is certainly a hot trend topic for church law. If you have a day care or a church school with a number of employees, you certainly need to know these rules.
In former years, employees were terminable at will, meaning that persons could be relieved of employment at any time and for any reason. Also, employees could end their employment at any time, at will. However, in recent years, state and federal laws have come into place which change this picture.
If you have a church policy handbook or an employee handbook, it should contain a clause which says, This document does not constitute a contract of employment..."
Also, there is a litany of federal statutes that exist, which, if they apply, may result in serious consequences regarding termination of employees. They are, among others:
1. Title VII Civil Rights Act of 1964 This Act covers discrimination because of sexual harassment, racial or ethnic discrimination, and other areas of protection. The Act covers hiring, firing, and many things in between.
2. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978.
3. The Age Discrimination Employment Act (ADEA).
4. American with Disabilities Act (ADA).
5. Fair Labor Standards Act which covers minimum wages.
6. Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (if applicable).
There is an excellent labor law firm in the Atlanta area, Postic and Babb, made up of Church of God-affiliated attorneys, who are experts in this field. One of the members of this firm has written a treatise on this subject entitled, Wrongful Termination. This is a very helpful book. Another helpful source is a book entitled, The Church Guide to Employment Law, by Julie L. Bloss. This book can be ordered through Christian Ministry Resources (see above).
Also, be sure that your church carries proper worker's compensation insurance. This can be a very problematic area if you do not carry it.
In short, be very careful about labor relations and termination of employees. This is a new area of law that can be very troublesome for the unwary minister or church."
Defamation is defined as the speaking and publishing of false, distorted and misleading information about another, in a way that harms that person's reputation. Libel is written or published information, and slander is oral or verbal defamation.
Advise your pastors not to use the background stories or experiences of others in illustrations, without obtaining the consent of the person involved.
Be careful to advise your ministers not to violate confidences shared with them in a ministerial setting.
Advise your ministers to be careful about receiving gifts from elderly persons or persons who may appear to be susceptible to the undue influence of a minister or church.
Any time such a person desires to give or will something to you or one of your ministers or a church, be sure that person gets independent legal advice, which means sending him or her to his or her lawyer, or a lawyer not connected with the church. This will remove the taint of undue influence.
Application of Securities Law to Church Bond and Financing Programs
This is a new area of church law, which may continue to be more prevalent.
Under these rules, securities laws are enforced against churches or ministers, in the same way that they are enforced against corporations for fraudulent stock issues. In some cases, ministers have been held to be criminally and civilly liable.
In general, there should not be a material omission of financial information about the church or its financing or its building program. Material misrepresentations of the financial strength of condition of a church can lead to problems. There should not be false predictions of success or pay-back probabilities on these programs. Also, unfounded guarantees can result in problems.
On January 1, 1995, a federal act came into effect, which applies to church-owned or leased vans or buses used for interstate church-related functions. In particular, this would apply when your churches use church-owned or leased vehicles to cross state lines on church activities.
The act states that the vehicle must carry over sixteen (16) passengers including the driver or have a gross weight of over 10,001 pounds in order to apply.
There are numerous requirements under the act, including qualified drivers with commercial driver's licenses. Certain amounts of insurance must be maintained, and certain methods of operation must be used to operate the vehicle. The vehicle must have certain markings and certain parts and accessories. The driver may only drive certain designated numbers of hours of services, and the vehicle must have regular inspections, repair and maintenance.
The bottom line is that you should be careful when sponsoring an out-of-state church-related trip, to ensure that the vehicle meets these detailed specifications. If you need a telephone number for the United State Department of Transportation in your state, which will provide you with copies of these regulations, please contact me, and I will be glad to share same with you.
On the issue of property, be sure to verify that all properties involving our churches are in the proper Church of God form. I have the form Church of God Warranty Deed, and I regularly work with attorneys around the country, educating them as to our policies and procedures regarding property and providing them with forms.
Our method of property ownership not only benefits the denomination, but also provides advantages to the local church, because many local churches seek assistance through our MRP program, and other various business aspects, and these services cannot be provided, without the property being placed in the correct forms.
Child Care & Safety on Church Premises
In the not-too-distant past, I have written two Profiles articles on the subject of child abuse and its relation to churches. This continues to be a very important topic, and I have reproduced these articles for your review. Please note the sources I mention in the articles, because they continue to be the leading sources for you in understanding the legal aspects of this very important issue.
"Care and Safety of Children on Church Premises" (Part 1)
Author: Dennis Watkins
Posted: February 17, 2000
"Care and Safety of Children on Church Premises" (Part 2)
Author: Dennis Watkins
Posted: February 17, 2000
Note: To view PDF documents on this page you will need free Adobe Reader. Click here to download."
Incorporation of Local Churches
Church of God Warranty Deed
Church of God Warranty Deed
(Incorporated Local Church)
Church of God Warranty Deed
(Unincorporated Local Church)
Application for Incorporation
(Evangelistic Association or Individual)
Application for Incorporation
Youth Liability Medical Release Form (18 Year Age of Maturity)
Youth Liability Medical Release Form (21 Year Age of Maturity)
Note: To view PDF documents on this page you will need free Adobe Reader. Click here to download."
Jesus calls everyone to accept Him as Lord and Savior of their life. The life in Christ is a new life, a changed life, because you have learned to walk daily with Jesus in a new dimension of love and understanding. The life in Christ is an abundant life in the Spirit; it is a daily walk with Christ.
This section of the Church of God web site provides spiritual help and resources in the daily Christian walk. If you are seeking to know Christ in His fullness, click on the link Jesus Saves.cc to discover how to find hope for your life through the good news" of Jesus Christ. In addition, "Spiritual Help" provides inspirational resources for the Christian believer.
Prayer is the channel through which all good flows from God to man: forgiveness, healing, power and love. It is a way of knowing God. If you would like to submit a prayer request, simply click on the button "Submit A Prayer Request." Your prayer need will be shared immediately with the Prayer Borne Ministry of the Church of God.
Find hope for your life through the Gospel of Jesus Christ; prayer, salvation, healing and deliverance.
Submit A Prayer Request
Need someone to pray for you or your need? Simply submit a prayer request on-line.
Prayerborne Ministry (Submit A Prayer Request)
Prayerborne Ministry is a group of retired Church of God ministers or spouses which has a sole purpose intercessory prayer for the Church of God and its constituency.
Prayerborne Ministry is an active and vital ministry at the Church of God International Offices and has been in effect for several years. Prayerborne is a group of retired Church of God ministers or spouses which has a sole purpose: intercessory prayer for the Church of God and its constituency.
Prayerborne meets each Wednesday at the International Offices of the Church of God, in Cleveland, Tennessee, and prays for many different types of prayer requests. Prayer is always offered up for the ministry of the Church of God and its leadership. Prayerborne receives many different types of prayer requests from all around the world.
It is exciting to hear seasoned prayer warriors" taking serious matters of concern to the throne of God in prayer! You are welcome to access this ministry by sending your prayer requests to Prayerborne, care of the International Offices. We will do our best to intercede for you and to take your requests to God in prayer!"
Since the founding of the Church of God, educational training has been a standard for the denomination. Below is an alphabetical list of educational institutions and entities of the Church of God. Should you need further assistance in locating a particular educational resource, please use the FaithSearch option or contact the Church of God.
Marcos Ligero, D.D., Interim President
102 Valero St., Salcedo Village
Tel: (632) 819-0697
Fax: (632) 813-1313
Roy L. Notice, M.A., Principal
7 Patrick Road
Jamaica, West Indies
Adolfo Sequeira, Education Director
Apartado Postal 2330
Francisco Jiménez, President
Apdo. 17, 17-1439
R. Lamar Vest, D.Litt., President
900 Walker Street NE
P. O. Box 3330
Cleveland, TN 37320-3330
Thomas Rosson, Ph.D., President
Eurasian Theological Seminary
Ul . Porechnaya 15
109652 Moscow, Russia
Tel/Fax: +7 (495) 345-9440 (in Moscow)
Paul Schmidgall, Ph.D., President
Pavel Rivis-Tipei, President
Str. ION Budai-Deleanu 75
Dr. Corneliu Constantineanu, Rector/President
B-dul Uverturii, nr. 210-220
Sect. 6 Bucuresti
Agris Ozolinkevich, M. Div., Director
J. Asara St. 8
LV-3001 Jelgava, LATVIA
Paul Conn, Ph.D., President
1120 North Ocoee Street
P.O. Box 3450
Cleveland, TN 37320-3450
Francisco Ortiz, M.Div., President
P.O. Box 901
St Just, Puerto Rico 00978-0901
2492 Keith Street P.O. Box 2430
Cleveland, TN 37320-2430
Enrique A. De Jesús, Ed.D., Director
P.O. Box 2430
Cleveland, TN 37320-2430 UNITED STATES
Church of God International Offices
2490 Keith Street P.O. Box 2430 Cleveland, TN 37320-2430
Phone: (423) 472-3361 Fax: (423) 478-7066"
On-Line Reporting the Choice of Many Church of God Ministers
On-line reporting debuted October 1, 2004 on the Church of God Web site. For the thousands of Church of God ministers who submit monthly reports on their ministerial activity, the process has been much easier and more convenient.
In its first year of operation, the Department of Business and Records received more than 45,000 reports with more than 5,500 reports being submitted for the month of August, 2005 alone. The excellent response to this new method of reporting for ministers is clearly an indication of their acceptance of Church of God on-line reporting. Every minister who has the capability of reporting on-line is encouraged to do so.
Julian B. Robinson, director of the Church of God's Department of Business and Records, announced the launch of electronic reporting to the International Offices beginning with the September, 2004 Minister's Report.
"This is a milestone for the Church of God and a service we have been eager to provide," Robinson stated. "The Computer Services personnel have worked very diligently on this project and we are excited about the possibility of many Church of God ministers using internet technology for reporting."
Robinson explained that a link for the on-line reporting service is displayed on the Church of God Web site, and any minister who wishes to report will simply click on the minister's reporting link which will be prominently displayed on the site. The link will take users to the home page of ministers reporting where instructions will be given.
"Both money and no-money reports can be submitted and will be sent to the international and state offices," Robinson continued. "However, when submitting a money report, it will be necessary to print a receipt to be mailed with the check or money order to the international or state offices, whichever is applicable."
Data for ministers who report on-line and whose state offices are using the Regional Office Program by Suran Systems, Inc, will also be sent to the state offices electronically from the international offices, Robinson explained. Suran's software has been revised to interface with the new software for on-line reporting. Those offices that are not on the Suran System will be provided the data from the reports processed at the international offices and plans are being finalized to ensure that accurate data is provided to all state and regional offices.
"As might be expected, this venture requires patience and cooperation from everyone," Robinson stated. "We want to make certain that on-line reporting functions properly and we will have personnel available to assist anyone with questions."
For inquiries or information about on-line reporting, please call Mrs. Sharon Hobbs at (423) 478-7149 who is coordinating on-line reporting for ministers in the Department of Business and Records. In addition, a 'feedback' button is also available on the Web site where questions can be e-mailed. As an added option, ministers can edit reports the day they are submitted if corrections are needed.
“Document adopted unanimously by the Church of God International Executive Council on April 30, 2009. Click here to read. Click here to download the document in its entirety.”
A meeting of the Committee of Action for the Reallocation of Resources has been set for April 30-May 1. The meeting is in response to action taken at the 72nd Church of God International Assembly last year in San Antonio, Texas.
Following debate on what was Item #3 of the Assembly agenda, the General Council at the Assembly referred the measure to the Executive Committee and International Executive Council. The result was the formation of a Committee of Action (COA) to address the impact of realignment and reallocation of church resources. Since the General Assembly, a steering committee has conducted numerous meetings, gathering data and information on all aspects of the International Offices, including structure, personnel and capital assets.
The Committee of Action consists of every Church of God Administrative Bishop in North America and the first elected member of each state or region's council. It also includes the International Executive Council, and sub-committees from the Reallocation of Resources Steering Committee. Sub-committees include 1) Impact on World Missions (World Missions Board), 2) Impact on the International Offices (Budget Review Committee) and 3) Impact on States/Regions. The group of nearly 150 leaders is slated to gather at the Dixon Center on the Lee University campus in Cleveland, Tennessee where they will hear results and recommendations from the impact studies. The Executive Council will hear results from the steering committee earlier in the week at the International Offices during their regularly scheduled April session.
Although the two-day meeting will be closed to spectators other than the Committee of Action, Church of God Communications and Lee University will be broadcasting the proceedings via live video stream. To view the sessions live in progress, click on the link below at the appropriate session times which are:
Session One: Thursday, April 30, 2:00 - 4:30 p.m.
Session Two: 7:00 - 9:30 p.m.
Session Three: Friday, May 1, 9:00 - 11:30 a.m.
Session Four: 1:30 - 4:00 p.m. (if necessary)
All times are Eastern Standard Time (EST).
There is no cost to view the broadcast, but download of flash video player may be required.
Watch live here."
The glue that binds believers together in changing times is the Great Commission given directly by Christ. It is about not being just “mission-minded” but about being “missional”; it is about engaging the divine directive. This directive of Christ is the missional mandate of the church.
At the 2008 International General Assembly, General Overseer Dr. Raymond Culpepper called the church to three core initiatives. One of these is how the church can rally to a new engaging vision of the Great Commission. An integral part of this initiative was the convening of two Great Commission Symposiums—East and West which took place on September 14-15, and September 17-18, 2009.
Raymond F. Culpepper has a life-long commitment and devotion to living out the Great Commission in his ministry. Elected general overseer of the Church of God in 2008, he immediately launched a three-pronged campaign featuring Prayer, the Great Commission and a Quest for Trust. He will share his passion for the lost as one of the featured speakers at both east and west venues.
Niko Njotorahardjo of Indonesia is senior pastor of one of the largest Church of God congregations with 125,000 members. He started his ministry in 1985 as God called him in restoration ministry of Praise and Worship. Presently, he is involved in “Healing Movement Ministry” having conducted more than 100 crusades in the past three years. His local church sponsors their own Bible School in Jakarta.
Ana Ruth Díaz is the founder and principal pastor of the Church of God Oasis of Love with more than 6,000 people attending each week. Located in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, Ana Ruth began her ministry at the age of 20 and today is well known for her passion and energy and is a frequent international speaker to leadership, church growth and healing conferences.
Loran Livingston is the senior pastor of the Central Church of God in Charlotte, N.C. Central Church was chartered in 1977 and Pastor Livingston became pastor just four months later. Beginning with a dedicated group of 19, today the church has grown to its present membership of over 7,000. Pastor Livingston’s ministry is well known throughout America for his powerful delivery of the gospel. He also serves as the voice of Forward In Faith, the international radio ministry of the Church of God.
Launch Live Stream (Please make sure popup blockers are turned off)"
Opening Prayer Time: 12:00-1:00
Finish Line Vision: 1:00-1:30
Douglas LeRoy, James Davis, Suliasi Kurulo
Showcasing Methods: 1:30-3:00
Strategizing Movements: 3:30-5:00
Sharing Models Part 1: 6:30-8:00
Sharing Models Part 2: 8:15-9:45
J. Hudson Taylor IV
Running The Race Together: 8:30-9:00
Synergizing Mobilization Part 1: 9:00-10:30
Synergizing Mobilization Part 2: 10:45-12:15
James O. Davis
Studying Multiplication Part 1: 1:15-2:45
Studying Multiplication Part 2: 3:00-4:30
Finish Line Paper: 4:30-5:30
LeRoy and Davis
These resources include documents and histories from the beginning of the Church of God movement.
Brief History of the Church that is Now Recognized as the Church of God
This is the first known history of the Church of God. It was written by the first General Overseer, A.J. Tomlinson, and included in his book The Last Great Conflict (Cleveland, Tenn.: Press of W.E. Rodgers, 1913), 184-98.
Selected Writings of R. G. Spurling
R.G. Spurling and his father Richard Spurling founded the Christian Union on August 19, 1886. R.G. Spurling became the first pastor of this fledgling congregation, which is considered to be the first Church of God. James M. Beaty, Ph.D, compiled these writings.
Note: To view PDF documents on this page you will need free Adobe Reader. Click here to download."
These resources are a collection of contemporary histories of the Church of God or some aspect of the Church of God movement.
Like a Mighty Army: A History of the Church of God, Definitive Edition, 1886-1995 (Cleveland, Tenn.: Pathway Press, 1996) is the official history of the Church of God. Written by church historian Charles W. Conn, it can be purchased from Pathway Press.
"Restorationism and a Vision for World Harvest: A Brief History of the Church of God (Cleveland, Tennessee)"
Written by David G. Roebuck, Ph.D., director of the Hal Bernard Dixon Jr. Pentecostal Research Center, this history was originally prepared for publication in The Acts of Pentecost, ed. Yung-Chul Han (Seoul, Korea: Han Young Theological University, 1998). The Acts of Pentecost was published in conjunction with the 18th Pentecostal World Conference.
"The First Twenty-One Years of the Church of God"
Written by James M. Beaty, Ph.D., this is a brief account of Church of God history from the founding of the Christian Union on August 19, 186 to the adoption of the name "Church of God" at the second annual assembly in 1907.
These resources include histories of departments, agencies and local Churches of God. They are generally part of larger web sites related to that department, agency or local church.
Pathway Press Heritage
This is a brief history of Pathway Press.
Church of God ministries are invited to submit links to their heritage page for inclusion here."
These are resources for the local church interested in preserving church documents, records and photographs as well as writing the history of their congregation.
General Commission on Archives and History of The United Methodist Church
This web site includes a manual for managing local church records, archival leaflets for the care and preservation of photographs, oral history and encapsulation, along with information on ordering videos for local church historians.
Southern Baptist Historical Library and Archives
This web site includes a series of articles related to archives and records management in the local church.
Preservation of Library and Archival Material
The Northeast Document Conservation Center provides this excellent online manual for the preservation of records, documents and photographs.
This publication of the Hal Bernard Dixon Jr. Pentecostal Research Center features articles about the Church of God movement.
Subscribe to Church of God History and Heritage by sending $5.00 for four issues to: Church of God History and Heritage, Hal Bernard Dixon Jr. Pentecostal Research Center, 260 11th Street NE, Cleveland, Tennessee, 37311.
These are other resources related to the history of the Pentecostal movement, the preservation of records or to the writing of church history.
Asian Journal of Pentecostal Studies
This web site provides links to a variety of Pentecostal and Charismatic denominations and churches as well as to articles related to the movements.
Pentecostal-Charismatic Theological Inquiry International
This is one of the most comprehensive web sites for news, churches and resources related to the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements. It includes the Cyberjournal for Pentecostal-Charismatic Research.
The following media files can be downloaded for use in bulletins, flyers, etc... Please remember that they are under copyright protection.
Under the copyright protection of the following logos, you may make single copies if they are solely for personal or individual church use, if you reserve the copyright and give proper credit. You may not reproduce or distribute copies to others, in whole or in part, whether or not for a charge, without prior permission from the Church of God Publishing House. For more information on copyright permission, call Pathway Press at (423) 478-7550.
Instructions: Right click on the desired format (Mac users click and hold). Select save target as" and select a location on your local computer to save the file.
Church of God Logo - Blue
Church of God Logo - Blue-Black
Church of God Logo - Gold
Church of God Logo - Red
Church of God Logo - Sunset
Church of God Logo With World
Opportunities Go Here
WHEREAS, on September 11, 2001, four hijacked planes -- American Airlines Flight 11, United Airlines Flight 175, American Airlines Flight 77, and United Airlines Flight 93 -- in a time span of only one hour and 25 minutes, crashed into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, the West Section of the Pentagon, and a rural section of Somerset County, Pennsylvania, taking the lives of more than 3,000 individuals; and
WHEREAS this violent act of unprecedented terrorism took the lives of individuals from all walks of life, including many different nationalities and religions, and through death touched the hearts of people in more than 60 countries worldwide; and
WHEREAS the events of this one day have forever changed our lives by impacting our personal sense of security and well-being, by challenging us to recognize the ever-present dangers that surround us, and revealing to us the end-time realities that are set before us; and
WHEREAS the Church of God, with ministries reaching more than 160 nations around the world, has in point of fact strategically felt the impact of the horrors of this unimaginable act of terrorism; and
WHEREAS the Church of God has responded through various denominational ministries under the guidance of our General Overseer, and facilitated through the office of our Division of Care Ministries, to assist those who have been most affected by these tragic events; and
WHEREAS we, the Church of God, remain committed to a worldwide ministry of evangelization, benevolent care, and ministry outreach, even in the face of the current threat of global terrorism;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we, the Church of God, support President George W. Bush and the numerous world leaders who have joined with him in determined resolve to end the threat of terrorism throughout the world; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we pray for all victims of terrorism around the world and those who continue to feel the pain and peril resulting from intentional harm by others, and that we follow the Scriptural admonition to pray for the salvation of those who themselves are committed to be agents of terror; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that in this 69th General Assembly of the Church of God, we commit ourselves to be agents of positive change by our manner of life, through example, testimony, prayer, and appropriate spiritual demeanor, that we may be living witnesses of the testimony of Jesus Christ and His message of peace and hope to a lost and dying world.
WHEREAS life originated in the creative work of Almighty God; and
WHEREAS man himself is created in the image and likeness of God; and
WHEREAS God assigned special value to human life; and
WHEREAS divine law forbids the indiscriminate taking of human life, exacting heavy penalties of those who violate this commandment; and
WHEREAS contemporary society demonstrates a low esteem for the sacredness of life; and
WHEREAS abortion-on-demand now receives serious consideration as a means of birth and population control; and
WHEREAS abortion is a vicious attack on the weakest and most helpless form of human life; and
WHEREAS the unborn are unable to speak in their own defense; and
WHEREAS intense pressure is being brought upon state and nation-al legislative bodies to liberalize abortion laws; and
WHEREAS it is the duty of the church to raise an authoritative moral voice concerning this vital issue;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we, the General Assembly of the Church of God, reaffirm our historic commitment to the sacredness of human life; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we stand opposed to the use of abortion as a means of birth or population control; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we urge our entire constituency to actively oppose any liberalization of abortion laws by state leg-islatures and by the Congress of the United States; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that no individual should ever consid-er abortion as an option except in the gravest circumstances, after medical and religious consultation of the most serious nature (56th A., 1976, pp. 35, 36).
WHEREAS the problem of spouse/child abuse now is recognized as a pervasive and growing societal problem; and
WHEREAS God’s Word clearly teaches the duty of husbands and wives to relate to one another in the context of godly love (Ephesians 5:25; Colossians 3:19); and
WHEREAS God’s Word further teaches the requirement of proper parenting that is both nurturing and loving on the part of Christian parents (Ephesians 5: 21; 6:4; Colossians 3:21); and
WHEREAS abuse toward a spouse or child, whether physical, verbal, emotional or otherwise, is totally inconsistent with the principles outlined in God’s Word for relationships between spouses and between parents and children; and
WHEREAS all Church of God ministers and laity should be exhorted to model and practice appropriate family living, consistent with Scriptural principles:
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we as a church unequivocally oppose any form of spousal, child or other abuse, whether physical, verbal, emotional, mental, or of any other kind; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that ministers and laity of the Church of God refrain from any actions violating the lofty ideals and principles of Scripture regarding treatment of spouses and children; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we encourage the adoption of policies and procedures, in accordance with governmental laws and Christian principles, to prevent and correct all forms of abuse (66th A., 1996, p. 65).
WHEREAS statistical data confirms that the average age of people in the United States of America and our world is steadily rising; and
WHEREAS today, according to the United States Department of Labor statistics, 1980, of every 100 people who reach age 65, only two of them are financially independent; and
WHEREAS many of the elderly in our world are forced to cope with old age and sickness by themselves, without aid from family, friends, church, or government; and
WHEREAS more than half of the oldest Americans, one in every 10 of those over 85 years of age, live alone and by themselves, often in spite of physical handicaps; and
WHEREAS demographic forecasters tell us this aging of America will continue well into the next century;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God give added attention to this segment of our population; that we structure programs to help minister to the needs of the aged; and that we encourage all local congregations to be especially aware of the plight of those saints who have contributed so much to us during the past years (61st A., 1986, p. 56).
WHEREAS there is now an increasing epidemic of AIDS in our world, and this disease is becoming the number one health concern of peoples of the world; and
WHEREAS there is much fear, confusion, and prejudice concerning AIDS, and a great need for more research in the treatment of this mysterious virus; and
WHEREAS we see the need for educating young people in sexual morality and in drug-free living; and
WHEREAS it is the desire of the Church of God to demonstrate com-passion, to encourage medical research, and to show courage in helping to make a difference in this epidemic;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God maintain a positive approach of ministry to these sick and suffering victims, and their families, with godly care and compassion; and convey to them that both spiritual and physical healing are available through the power of the blood of Jesus Christ our Lord (63rd A., 1990, p. 64).
See Supplement, pages 119-121.
WHEREAS the church exists in the form of a family with family relationships, rights, privileges, and responsibilities extended to every member; and
WHEREAS all unsaved persons are loved by God who desires their reconciliation into His family; and
WHEREAS all children and youth are a heritage of the Lord (Psalm 127:3, NKJV), to be cherished, protected, defended, redeemed, and discipled; and
WHEREAS the social, physical, cognitive, psychological, and spiritual development of children and youth leave them vulnerable to harm for an increasing period of time; and
WHEREAS the current culture displays a degenerating appreciation, concern, and accountability for our children and youth, and
WHEREAS we have experienced a pervasive rise in violence to and by children and youth; and
WHEREAS the probability of physical injury or death or long-term, life-altering social, psychological, cognitive, and spiritual harm are increasing dramatically for all children and youth;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that the Church of God declares as a high priority the reconciliation, care, protection and discipline of all children and Youth within the scope of our influence, whether or not they are participants in our specific fellowship; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that each Church of God congregation be strongly encouraged to develop and implement sound policies and strategies for the protection of children and youth while participating in our various ministries; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we intensify our efforts to support and equip parents for their role as the primary care givers and teachers of children and youth; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that the Church of God, in any of its expressions from local to international, become an effective advocate for the protection and nurture of children and youth and that such advocacy be exercised in a positive, pro-active fashion designed to provide guidance and solutions beyond rhetoric and protest, resulting in substantive impact on our hurting world. (67th A., 1998, pp. 57, 58).
WHEREAS in the light of the rapid growth of Christian School Ministries (day-care centers, kindergartens, elementary and high schools); and
WHEREAS there is the ever-growing attempt of federal and state governments to infringe upon the rights of churches to establish and maintain these ministries; and
WHEREAS there seems to be an attempt by some government agen- cies to declare that the Christian School Ministries are not an integral part of the church; and
WHEREAS Christian School Ministries in the Church of God are governed under the jurisdiction of the state overseers, the state boards of education, and the local sponsoring churches;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God, meeting in the 58th General Assembly in Dallas, Texas, affirms that the Christian School Ministries (day-care centers, kindergartens, elementary and high schools) are an integral arm of the local Church of God ministry in their organization, function, and goals (58th A., 1980, p. 51).
WHEREAS the local church has been commissioned by God as the primary agency for communicating the gospel and establishing communities of the Kingdom; and
WHEREAS the urgent need of today’s troubled cities cries out for the transforming influence of local congregations in every neighborhood; and
WHEREAS the Church of God in this 64th General Assembly has endorsed visionary and far-reaching plans for evangelistic expansion; and
WHEREAS the Church of God has demonstrated a commitment to the aggressive establishment of new congregations through- out its history, and our periods of greatest numerical growth have coincided with concentrated efforts in church planting;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God dedicate its efforts in prayer to the Lord of the harvest to send forth laborers into the harvest (Matthew 9:38), concentrate its attention upon the identification of fertile fields (Acts 18:9-11), and commit itself to a determined plan of establishing churches (Matthew 28:19, 20); and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we seek creative ways of celebrating successes and breakthroughs in church planting (64th A.,1992, pp. 78, 79).
WHEREAS there is a deluge of allegations of clerical sexual misconduct; and
WHEREAS there are very heavy pressures and temptations facing our clergy that are unique to our age and culture; and
WHEREAS we align our concerns with Church father St. Gregory the Great’s dictum: “It is better that scandals arise than that truth be silenced;” and
WHEREAS the first concern of the Church of God is to offer immediate and appropriate care to victims and their families, and
WHEREAS the Church of God values open communication and dialogue with the community concerning clergy sexual abuse within the confines of respect for the privacy of the individuals involved;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we reaffirm our commitment to be concerned for the rights, reputation, healing, and spiritual welfare of all victims; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED when there is substantial evidence of sexual misconduct of a Church of God minister involving minors, the minister will be placed on administrative leave and the Church of God will comply with the obligations of civil law as regards reporting of the incident to legal authorities and cooperating with the investigation; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a minister who has engaged in sexual misconduct with a child will not be returned to ministry in accordance with our polity; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we sincerely pray for both the victim and the abuser, believing each to be God’s unique and loved creation; and, that we be careful to avoid any spirit of pharisaism in keeping with the expectations stated in Galatians 6:1.
WHEREAS secular humanism and anti-God philosophies are being taught in our public educational systems; and
WHEREAS there is a need for God’s people to unite against the teaching of evolution as a scientific fact;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we give our full support to the principle that where evolution is taught in our public schools, provision be made for teaching the Biblical alternative of creation (58th A., 1980, p. 51).
WHEREAS the frequency of corporate scandals are being highly publicized; and
WHEREAS there is the strong tendency in many businesses toward short-term thinking, planning, and commitment, which can lead to morally questionable decisions and practices; and
WHEREAS it is arguable that the long-term survival of even very large businesses will depend increasingly on the permission of society rather than on short-term financial statistics; and
WHEREAS people in business need to be sensitized to the issues of ethical dimensions heretofore ignored; and
WHEREAS increasingly there is a recognition that areas of business policy about the treatment of employees, customers, shareholders, and others, as well as corporate impact on the environment and indeed the world, are not such discrete and isolated issues as may have been thought; and
WHEREAS integrity calls for business leaders to assume full accountability for their actions, responsibility for the outcome of their actions, and for respecting codes of conduct, rules of business, and laws of countries, abiding by both the letter and the spirit; and
WHEREAS continuing attention to ethics in the workplace sensitizes leaders and staff to how they want to act—consistently; and
WHEREAS managing ethical values in the workplace legitimizes managerial actions, strengthens the coherence and balance of the organization’s culture, improves trust in relationships between individuals and groups, supports greater consistency in standards and qualities of products, and cultivates greater sensitivity to the impact of the enterprise’s values and messages; and
WHEREAS the marketplace is to reflect a work environment on the foundation of integrity; and
WHEREAS high standards reward business with the solid reputation of integrity, honesty, and trustworthiness;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God reaffirms our commitment to encouraging business leaders to meet the high expectations of Biblical integrity and commitment; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the public trust of business be preserved by following Biblical principles and guidelines; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we model right behavior in all business dealings and fiduciary responsibilities; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we expect business leaders to commit to making a positive difference in their business dealings with one another, their communities, and society; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that business leaders seek to understand, value, and leverage diverse cultural differences and perspectives; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we expect leaders to adopt business ethics for the improvement of society, to develop a code of practice and a statement of ethical principles, and act according to these values.
WHEREAS, the family is the foundational unit of human society, established by the creational intent of God; and
WHEREAS, the family is rooted in God’s good gift of marriage, which the Creator defines as the lifelong union of one man and one woman (Genesis 1:26–27; Genesis 2:18–25); and
WHEREAS, scripture affirms that such a family unit is God’s design for the nurturing of children (Deuteronomy 6:4–9; Psalm 127:1–5; Ephesians 6:1-4); and
WHEREAS, the biblical vision of the family is obscured by current attempts to redefine marriage itself and to marginalize the importance of the nuclear family; and
WHEREAS, the biblical model of the family increasingly is undermined by a divorce culture that sees marriage as a temporary social arrangement; and
WHEREAS, the biblical vision of the family is eclipsed even more scandalously by domestic violence, marital infidelity, abandonment, and divorce, sometimes within our own churches; and
WHEREAS, a disproportionately large number of children reared in evangelical/Pentecostal churches are growing up to leave the faith of their fathers"; now,
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Church of God General Assembly meeting in San Antonio, Texas, August 2 - 7, 2004, renew our commitment to building Kingdom families, by the recovery of the biblical understanding of the family and the acknowledgment of the permanence and responsibilities of the marriage covenant; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Church of God unequivocally affirms that marriage is a covenant relationship between a man and woman and rejects all attempts to redefine marriage in terms of same-sex unions and behavior; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we call on Church of God parents to assume their responsibility as the primary protectors and instructors of their children and to devote themselves to inculcate godly disciplines in their own lives and the lives of their children; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we call on Church of God ministers to proclaim the witness of Scripture to the biblical pattern of the family and its responsibilities and permanence; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we encourage every Church of God congregation to be intentionally involved in strengthening marriages and families through such activities as faithful preaching and teaching, biblical premarital and family counseling, and restorative church discipline; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we encourage Church of God congregations to pursue intentional ministry to single parent families as a non-negotiable biblical mandate, affirming that God Himself is the Father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5) and that the church is God’s spiritual family (Matthew 12:47–50); and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that we call on our churches to model before our culture family structures that reflect the biblical vision of the Kingdom of God and the love of Christ for His church."
WHEREAS the family is under constant attack from all areas of life and families are being destroyed at a rapid rate; and
WHEREAS presently one of every two marriages ends in divorce and many others fail to produce happiness and purpose;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we reaffirm our position that marriage is sacred and holy and that our ministers prayerfully and Scripturally counsel engaged couples prior to performing the marriage ceremony; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we urge our families to return to the Scriptural pattern for families, and that they emphasize family love, concern, and communication; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that each local church emphasize fami-ly devotions and further, that they allow in their schedules for a weekly family night at home; and that ministers set the example of meaningful family life; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that ministers and members strive to reunite divided homes and salvage troubled marriages for the cause of Christ (56th A., 1976, p. 35).
WHEREAS gambling is a vice which is growing in popularity, having been legalized by almost every state and becoming one of America’s largest industries, with an annual income of 500 billion dollars; and
WHEREAS, cities, states and Native American reservations are turning to gambling as a profitable source of public income; and
WHEREAS gambling is the most regressive and unfair form of taxation, since research has shown that a disproportionate number of gamblers are poor and uneducated, who can least afford to suffer the losses; and
WHEREAS the odds of winning are heavily stacked against the gambler, in favor of “the house,” assuring always that the vast majority of participants will lose; and
WHEREAS gambling is a violation of the golden rule, resting on a scheme that the few winners will receive their profits from losses suffered by the many losers (Exodus 20:15; Matthew 7:12; Philippians 2:3,4; Romans 12:10; 13:10; 1 Corinthians 10:31-33; Galatians 6:2; James 2:8); and
WHEREAS Scripture commands love for God and our neighbor (Matthew 23:36-40; Mark 12:28-33), teaching us to do all for the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31), and in friendship (John 15:13) to seek our neighbor’s good (Romans 14:19-21; 1 Thessalonians 5:15), while gambling seeks personal profit at the expense of others; and
WHEREAS Scripture emphasizes the sovereignty of God (1 Chronicles 29:11-13; Matthew 10:29-30); Philippians 4:19) while gambling encourages reliance on luck and chance; and
WHEREAS Scripture emphasizes the virtues of work (Exodus 20:9; Ephesians 4:28; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-12; Genesis 3:19; 1 Timothy 5:8) thrift and saving (Proverbs 6:6-11), contentment and virtue (Philippians 4:11) and peace (I Corinthians 14:33), while gambling encourages risk-taking and a something-for-nothing attitude; and
WHEREAS Scripture teaches Christian stewardship of resources, which holds that all things belong to God and that we are to use all earthly possessions as His agents in accordance with His will (Psalms 24:1; 50:10-12; Luke 12:42-48; 1 Corinthians 10:26; 2 Corinthians 8:5) while gambling encourages selfishness and reckless abandon; and
WHEREAS proper use of money does not include gambling, but instead: provides basic needs (2 Thessalonians 3:10); supports the family (1 Timothy 5:8); contributes to God’s work (1 Corinthians 16:1-3); meets human needs and gives to the poor (Ephesians 4:28; 1 Corinthians 9:6-15); and pays taxes (Matthew 22:21—Romans 13:7); and
WHEREAS Scripture condemns greed, covetousness and materialism (Exodus 20:17; Matthew 6:24-34; Philippians 3:18, 19; Colossians 3:5,6), while gambling encourages these sins of the flesh, lusting after unearned and undeserved prize money in clear violation of God’s law (1 Timothy 6:10; Luke 12:15); and
WHEREAS Scripture teaches us to avoid all appearance of evil (1 Thessalonians 5:22) and to hate what is evil (Romans 12:9), while gambling is a major source of income for organized crime, attracting criminal elements and encouraging participation in other vices and illegal activities; and
WHEREAS Scripture encourages saving with the hope of secure return (Matthew 25:27) and invites us to lay up our treasures in heaven (Matthew 6:19-21), which is very different from risking them for almost certain loss in gambling; and
WHEREAS Scripture condemns the exploitation of employees (James 5:1-4) and emphasizes their right to earned wages (Luke 10:7); and gambling is a threat to the economy, to legitimate industries and businesses, and to positive forms of entertainment and recreation; and
WHEREAS gambling produces an increase in unpaid bills, embezzlement, bankruptcy, and job absenteeism; and
WHEREAS gambling produces nothing and adds nothing to the economy; and
WHEREAS gambling is an addictive behavior which enslaves its victims, robbing them of their personal dignity and financial well-being (1 Corinthians 8:13; 2 Corinthians 6:3); and
WHEREAS gambling is injurious to its addicts, to their families, to other innocent persons and to society (Romans 14:19-21); and
WHEREAS gambling is personally selfish, morally irresponsible and socially destructive; and
WHEREAS gambling interests often corrupt police and government officials. undermining the welfare of society and their respect for law enforcement;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that the Church of God strongly affirms its opposition to Gambling in every form as a violation of God’s perfect will for His people; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that our preachers and Bible teachers urge our people to practice the virtues of labor, thrift and saving as God’s chosen means of supplying their material needs and bestowing His financial blessings upon them; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we urge our members to express their opposition to any government proposals that promote and/or legalize any form of gambling in their states and communities; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we widely proclaim the power of the gospel to deliver believers from the grip and guilt of all vices and addictions; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we will refuse to seek personal profit at the expense of other persons and families; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we do encourage our ministers and churches to inform themselves concerning existing gambling laws and the state of law enforcement in their states and communities; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we support laws, lawmakers and law enforcement officials who oppose gambling; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we will work within civic, community and business organizations to prevent their sponsorship of gambling in the community; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we actively oppose any government efforts to expand and/or promote the legalization of gambling; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we commend legislators and government officials who oppose the legalization of gambling and support them in the defense of morality (67th A., 1998, pp. 54-57).
WHEREAS the year 2002 is the centennial anniversary of the Holiness Church at Camp Creek, which was organized on May 15, 1902, and which established the name Holiness Church as our name until we adopted the name Church of God in 1907, and which established the Church of God movement in the broader Holiness Movement; and
WHEREAS the 2002 evaluation of the Church of God (by INJOY denominational consultants) noted that holiness defines our character, and that this character must be passed on to the next generation with a specific recommendation to establish a plan of education in order to influence the next generation; and
WHEREAS the Scriptures compel us to live holy lives conformed to the image and character of a holy God; and
WHEREAS the Church of God is firmly rooted in both the Pentecostal and Holiness Movements; and
WHEREAS the Church of God is historically, doctrinally, and practically a holiness church;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we accept holiness as the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit and humbly recognize the Scriptural mandate to be a holy people; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we thankfully praise the Lord for His holiness and His call for us to be holy; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we joyfully and decisively affirm our holiness character as a people of God; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we reaffirm our commitment to holiness as expressed in the “Resolution Relative to Principles of Holiness” adopted in 1960 and published in the Supplement to the Minutes of the International General Assembly; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we continually remind our ministers and laity of the importance of love in the preaching, teaching, and practice of holiness, so that our God-given character of holiness flows out of a spirit of compassion rather than a spirit of legalism; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we call upon all Church of God educational programs to intentionally develop and maintain a curriculum that emphasizes the Biblical call to holiness, our history as a church rooted in the Holiness Movement, and the ongoing necessity to live a life pleasing to God in an increasingly sinful and secular world.
WHEREAS natural calamities, disease, wars, and political expressions are working against international stability, peaceful coexistence, and hopes for a Christ-centered world; and
WHEREAS governments and humanitarian resources are being challenged to meet the growing demands for food, clothing, medicine, shelter, and so forth, of people in crisis;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God calls for universal restoration of the godly virtues inherent in the commandment “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 19:19), thus repudiating sin, but demonstrating compassion, reconciliation, and restoration in the spirit of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:18); and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Church of God reaffirms that the Good Samaritan principle of helping the wounded, frightened, lonely, and dying is a necessary, expedient, and functional part of the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19), whereby we are to occupy until Christ comes, and to pray, “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done” (Matthew 6:10) (64th A., 1992, p. 79)
WHEREAS most statistical surveys list the U.S.A. as having the third largest pre Christian population in the world; and,
WHEREAS we need to develop and implement strategies that view the U.S.A. as a mission field; and,
WHEREAS the World Missions department has been incredibly successful in its mission efforts and offers multiple methods by which the U.S.A. can be reached for Christ;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED That we recognize the U.S.A. as a mission field; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED That the Evangelism and Home Missions Department develop and deploy home missionaries and request missionaries from other ethnic and language groups from the international body who make up the Church of God; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED That we continue to develop means by which the departments of World Missions and Evangelism and Home Missions work together in developing strategies and training workers for the world harvest.
WHEREAS the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ is relevant to the problem of human rights; and,
WHEREAS the issue of human rights focuses upon the integrity of our democracy; and,
WHEREAS Christian obedience to the law of love requires a concern for one’s neighbor is plainly enjoined in Scripture; and,
WHEREAS no Christian can manifest a passive attitude when the rights of others are jeopardized;
BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God continue to create a climate of informed and spiritual opinion, and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we identify a basic premise on which concerned opinion must rest. That premise, undergirded by the dignity and worth of every individual, assures all Americans the right to full citizenship. In particular this means that no American should, because of his race, or religion, be deprived of his right to worship, vote, rest, eat, sleep, be educated, live, and work on the same basis as other citizens; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Christian love and tolerance are incompatible with race prejudice and hatred; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Church of God—recognizing that moral problems are ultimately solved by changing the heart of the individual by the power of the Holy Ghost, resulting in a love for all men—supports that which assures all people those freedoms guaranteed in our Constitution; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the church be urged to continue to practice the love and brotherhood it preaches (50th A., 1964, pp. 67, 68).
WHEREAS acts of terrorism against innocent people are on the increase worldwide; and
WHEREAS the destruction of property and the taking of lives are against basic Christian principles; and
WHEREAS Scripture forbids the unlawful taking of human life and exacts heavy penalties to those who violate this commandment;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we, the General Assembly of the Church of God, reaffirm our historic commitment to the sacredness of human life; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we stand opposed to all acts of international terrorism (58th A., 1980, p. 50).
WHEREAS communication, industrialization and expanding tech-nology make it obvious that peoples of our world are drawing closer together; and
WHEREAS this church has experienced phenomenal growth, especially in other nations and among other cultures of our world; and
WHEREAS there seems an obvious need for strengthening ties between the Church of God, U.S.A., and those congregations, missions, and fellow laborers in more than one hundred nations of our world; and
WHEREAS it has never been the will or the intent of this church to segment or in any way differentiate between bodies of believers since Jesus Christ taught and emphasized the brotherhood of all believers through divine grace;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that this General Assembly recog-nizes and accepts its responsibility for promoting the inter-nationalization of the Church of God and that we herewith dedicate ourselves anew to the designing of programs and to the initiating of steps which will accomplish this purpose; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that our department heads and those who set policies and give emphasis to our education programs be encouraged to promote this concept; and that henceforth in all our publications and in all our official and private correspondence, we endeavor to recognize and to emphasize the international character of the Church of God as opposed to any national, regional, or sectional image (58th A., 1980, p. 50)
WHEREAS we have come to an era of history when anarchy raises its evil head to give expression in resentment, strife, hatred, rebellion, riots, and wars; and
WHEREAS this nefarious, incorrigible spirit does not restrict its operation to street lawlessness, college disruptions and government upheavals, but seductively laces its poisonous tentacles into pulpits and pews where should abound the glory of order and peace;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we express to our government leaders our support and prayers for all righteous effort on their part to curb this lawlessness. But more importantly;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we pledge to ourselves and to each other that we shall strive to thwart this pernicious evil by personally manifesting holy reverence to God, respect for law and order, and Christian regard for the rights of all men (52nd A., 1968, pp.40-42).
WHEREAS certain elements of our culture equate Christian morality with backwardness and ignorance; and
WHEREAS others tag morality to changing times and perspectives, arguing for relativity rather than any sure and certain foundation; and
WHEREAS such views so dominate the news that sin steps boldly from closet to main street and prophetic voices are labeled as bigotry and intolerance; and
WHEREAS the message of church leadership is too often muted from failures of its own or else silenced by expediency in the face of the new god, political correctness; and
WHEREAS the Bible explicitly condemns sin, while forgiving the sinner who repents; and
WHEREAS the Church of God has always based its belief and doctrine on “the whole Bible rightly divided,” and
WHEREAS the church has always insisted its leaders walk worthy of God’s calling (Ephesians 4: 1), and the Lord (Colossians 1:10), and present themselves as an “example of the believers in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1 Timothy 4:12);
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that the Church of God reaffirm its commitment to Biblical morality; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that every leader of this church (national and international, departmental, state, and local) renew personal commitment to holy living and moral integrity in every aspect of personal and public life; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that every member of this church, young and old, recall that Christian living is truly defined only in terms of Christlikeness; and
BE IF FINALLY RESOLVED that we will each and all stand up together and trumpet forth a sure and certain message (1 Corinthians 14:8) of hope and deliverance for a world in darkness through the light and loveliness of Jesus Christ our Lord (67th A., 1998, pp. 58, 59).
THE CHURCH OF GOD is an international church, transcending culture, race, nationalism, and politics. It is a community of believers from every nation around the world. These times call for leadership to have a worldview of the church. There is no place for colonialism or provincialism.
THEREFORE WE RESOLVE
To cultivate a world perspective among all church leaders
To develop an awareness and understanding among leaders of the need for keeping pace with rapid change
To educate leadership in reaching the needs of all cultures
To initiate strategies for developing leaders within each cul- ture served by the church
To strengthen leadership through special seminars on leadership conferences
To recognize that existing leaders have world responsibilities and are therefore internationally accountable
To involve as many leaders as possible in the decision-
making processes of the church
To confirm again our role as an international church whose primary mission is to win and disciple souls for Jesus Christ (63rd A., 1990, pp. 65, 66).
WHEREAS American society historically has recognized the sanctity of marriage between man and woman as central to the stability of our nation and its moral posture; and
WHEREAS this rational moral view is now threatened by current trends that seek to distort this view toward acceptance of unions that stand directly opposed to Scriptural directives; and
WHEREAS many state and national leaders presently are seeking to reaffirm through legislative decrees and public statements our historic stand on the sanctity of marriage between man and woman; and
WHEREAS the Church of God from its beginning has understood the Biblical model of marriage to be a sacred union between man and woman; and
WHEREAS the Church of God has continued to affirm this basic belief through a practical commitment regarding moral purity which condemns homosexuality as a fleshly behavior and sinful practice; and
WHEREAS the Church of God has further affirmed the sanctity of marriage between man and woman through a practical commitment addressing family responsibility by declaring, “Marriage is ordained of God and is a spiritual union in which man and woman are joined by God to live together as one”; and
WHEREAS it is imperative that the Church of God now enter the arena of public debate concerning this ever-increasing threat to the sanctity of marriage between man and woman;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we, the 66th General Assembly of the Church of God, do reaffirm our commitment to the Word of God and its ever-present defense of marriage as a holy and sacred union between one man and one woman; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that we do hereby state our opposition to the rising trend toward legitimizing homosexual unions; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that we encourage our members to help preserve marriage as a sacred union between man and woman by living lives that model commitment to the Word of God, exemplify devotion to moral purity, and celebrate family responsibility (66th A., 1996, pp. 64, 65).
WHEREAS the American people enjoy unparalleled freedoms of communication and expression; and
WHEREAS the responsible exercise of these freedoms is necessary to vital democracy; and
WHEREAS those who control and use the media are uniquely situated to influence the thoughts, opinions, values, and conduct of others; and
WHEREAS the lack of accountability by the media in exercising this privilege not to impinge upon the rights of others; and
WHEREAS there is an obvious lack of objectivity, truthfulness, and responsibility on the part of many who control and use the media in presenting morality in American life; and
WHEREAS the Judeo-Christian values of the American majority are often ignored or ridiculed;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED THAT the Church of God does hereby call upon all who control or use the media to be objective, truthful, and morally responsible in the exercise of their freedoms of communication and expression;
AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT we call upon those who control and use the media to respect the rights of all Americans and to desist from ignoring or ridiculing the Judeo-Christian moral and ethical values held by a majority of Americans (60th A., 1984, p. 57).
WHEREAS the home has come under attack on many fronts and the family is struggling against forces greater than those faced by previous generations; and
WHEREAS by age 19, 80 percent of today’s males and 67 percent of today’s females are sexually active; and
WHEREAS many parents lack knowledge for teaching Scriptural principles concerning sexuality, marriage, and a proper self-image; and
WHEREAS most parents and teenagers desire better communication with one another but lack the basic skills to accomplish this; and
WHEREAS the local church, as the basic support group for the fami-ly, is called to minister to these needs;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God seek to train parents for effectively communicating Biblical principles relating to sexuality, marriage, and a proper self-image to young people; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Church of God seek to develop among parents and their teenagers improved relational skills and an atmosphere of love and acceptance and that these goals be accomplished through research and the development of an aggressive awareness and training program for parents (61st A., 1986, p. 56).
WHEREAS a new light of freedom and opportunity for evangeliza- tion shines across the world today; and
WHEREAS a new cry for trained, spiritual leadership is being heard throughout the world because of church growth and evangelism in new fields of labor; and
WHEREAS God is raising up a mighty army of new warriors and champions who are entering ministry in record numbers;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Church of God support, promote, and encourage the accessibility of ministerial training and development throughout the world (64th A., 1992, p.78).