Independent

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by cookinout, Jun 6, 2011.

  1. cookinout

    cookinout
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    Can someone provide scripture to me that says whether or not churches are to be Independant or if they can be part of an Association/Convention.
    Thanks!
     
    #1 cookinout, Jun 6, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2011
  2. HAMel

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    I am certainly not an authority on this but attended "Independent" Baptist Churches for many years and at one point, belonged to a SBC church.

    Conventions and Associations are man-made. As stated before, a Camel is the result of a Horse going through a Committee. Sometimes these Conventions and Associations can make it's members look like..., uh..., er uh..., donkeys to the outside world.
     
  3. JesusFan

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    Think that most Independents would claim the passage where God commands His people to come out of the midst of those who are in the World, to come out from their midst and not partake of their sins, but don't think that this gives the 'full/real" meaning that the Lord intended of the passage!

    Think that IF one is convinced/persuaded that it is best to remain Independent, to tjem it would be a 'sin" to reamin in an association of Churces, but don't think I am in sin when I choose to remain an association of like minded baptist Churches!
     
  4. revmwc

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    First you must understand that almost every SBC pastor and most members believe since their church is autonomous that they are independent.
    Denominations were not what God had in mind for the church. The church was to be one in unity and belief, but false teachings and doctrine crept in and Satan created denominations to seperate and confound folks. Amazing how he does that. Now the unbeliever has to ask well with so many people saying so many things who is right. Thank the Lord for the Holy Spirit bringing conviction to us for salvation and He too can lead us to the truth.

    The associations and Conventions are to bring those of like faith into unity with one another while leaving the churches autonomous, to me that is not quite independent. I grew up in a totally independent church, no associational ties no paying of dues to a co-op or association. We answered not to a Fellowship of churches. We did carry the Baptist monogram because our beliefs were aligned with the Baptist. It is a matter of choice as to which way the church aligns and the believer.
     
  5. go2church

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    Not addressed in the bible specifically but there is examples of other churches taking offerings for other churches, Philippians 4. That is about as close as you are going to get. Anyone that tries to build a case one way or the other is in all likelihood making it up.

    Conventions, associations are human tools to help accomplish a godly goal. When they cease to be effective or useful we can move on to other things.
     
  6. cookinout

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    Thanks so much! I am in an Independant church, but personally have no issues with conventions. This issue has caused some division, so I wanted to see if there was scripture to support either. I was told that the Bible supports the Independant church, but have never been provided scripture.
     
  7. JesusFan

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    Think that it falls under preference/conviction/persuausion...

    If YOU think that is the way God inteeds it to go, by all means stay Independent...

    problem is when ALL get judged whose understanding disagrees with that for them to be doing!
     
  8. Salty

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    Some have said they are totally independent. Hogwash! More than likely they help support missionaries who are part of a mission board, or possibly sent out by another church.
    If your church does that - I could then argue you are not totally independent. Unless your individually church supports a missionary 100%... and if you did that, it would be hard to help in being part of the great commission.

    In our SBC association, several churches have not supported any SBC or local association offerings at all. We do NOT have a bishop. We do have a Director of Missions - but he is no more than a ADVISOR!
     
  9. Luke2427

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    That there was cooperation between churches could not be clearer in Scripture.
    Paul traveled from church to church gathering offerings for gospel endeavors.

    That is the very essence of the cooperative program whereby the SBC keeps 5,000 missionaries on the field preaching the Gospel and caring for the hurting all over the earth.
     
  10. Jerome

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    Local Southern Baptist association constititution:

     
  11. go2church

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    That is a suggested article but not a required one. Honestly, where else do you want the money to go, divided among the members or used to continue preaching the gospel in some way or another?
     
  12. go2church

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    FYI our church does not have such an article
     
  13. Salty

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    Key phase is "revert back" by stating it that way, it would appear that the Association may have provided assets fro the church to begin. If so, then I could understand the thinking, same if the church decided to leave the association/SBC; say within five years.

    And I agree with Go2church - as a SBC church, we would want our assets to assist another SBC church or organization. If fact, that is exactly what our church did 18 months ago when we folded.
    As long as it is only a recommendation, and not a requirement (unless assets were initially provided by the association).
     
  14. Jerome

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    Local Southern Baptist association constitution:

    "Churches petitioning the Association for membership are required to have their own constitution, by laws, and articles of incorporation. It is also strongly suggested the petitioning church include in its constitution and bylaws a dissolution or reversal clause insuring that if at any time the church ceases to be a Southern Baptist Church, all assets will revert back to the Association and/ or State Convention."

    It is "strongly suggested" of churches petitioning to join the association.

    Oh, it's not just about SBC church plants that go belly up.

    Note that the boilerplate language does not just say "ceases to be a church", rather it says "ceases to be a Southern Baptist Church".

    IOW, a church decides to leave the Convention (parish the thought!), all its assets could be seized.

    Real autonomous.
     
  15. Salty

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    If an association required it (unless assets were provided by the association) I would not join that association - I would inquire of joining another association nearby - or - if you are not aware of it, a church can be SBC and decide not to be part of an association.

    But even if all that did happen - there is a loophole - if you think about it - in the event that the association tried to have "all its assets could be seized."
     
  16. revmwc

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    Missionary came to our church spoke, was sent a questionaire. Once the Questionaire was back and read the church would decide based on the answer to support or not support.
    Missionary made a choice to have a check sent directly to them or to a clearing house type place to manage the funds. So how does the church become "not totally independent"? Not the churches choice missionaries preference. The missionary is dependent on the church and the clearing house, manager or board whatever not the church. The church sends funds as directed by the missionary. Still independent of those clearing hoses or whatever you call them, the church is sending to the missionary.
     
  17. Mexdeaf

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    Most "Independent" churches are tied to other organizations or churches in some way, shape, or form. I was a member of BBFI churches for many years and if a state association of BBFI pastors helped a church plant get started and it failed the assets of the work went back to the state association. I don't know if that was in the charter, but I saw it happen often.

    The suggestion that somehow "independent" churches are somehow "more free" than SBC churches is hogwash.
     
  18. Jerome

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    Dr. Finn (teaches church history at SEBTS) explains how these onerous clauses were foisted upon Southern Baptist churches:

    Note that it wasn't just the churches that had been helped financially. "All" churches in the NC Convention were urged to add the clauses.
     
  19. Dr. Bob

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    When the Northern Baptist Convention was disintegrating, there were six major court cases similar.

    Only two sided with the minority and gave the building/assets to the minority. This was because of ties of the deeds, etc, to the Convention.

    In all the other cases . . and then hundreds of other congregations followed suit with no court cases since it was futile . . the courts sided with the duly constituted church action.

    Unless a tie is given to a state or national body, a local congregation is autonomous an may choose via their individual constitutions anything to do what they desire.

    [btw, I changed the spelling of the thread title. I small irritant corrected]
     
  20. Deacon

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    Churches in association

    “So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria had peace and was being built up. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it multiplied. ”
    Acts 9:31,ESV

    Rob
     

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