Resolution on Conference Theme: I Will Build My Church
Whereas Jesus Christ, the Head of the Church (Col. 1:18), promised in Matthew 16:18 to build a body of believers, which He called His Body the Church, at a time future to this text; and
Whereas this Body was a mystery to the Old Testament patriarchs and prophets, and would be uniquely different from the nation Israel, in that it would be composed of both Jew and Gentile united in this one Body (Eph. 2:11-22) in Christ; and
Whereas the Church could not come into existence until Christ ascended into heaven and the Holy Spirit was sent down on the day of Pentecost to fulfill the promises of Jesus Christ (John 14:16-18; 16:7-14); and
Whereas Scripture describes Jesus Christ as both Foundation (I Cor. 3:11) and Cornerstone (Eph. 2:20) [where in the latter, the term used is ακρογωνιαιου, “the primary foundation stone at the angle of the structure by which the architect fixes a standard for the bearing of the walls and cross-walls throughout” (W.W. Lloyd, per A.T. Robertson)], the one foundational reference point from which all measurements and angles for the superstructure are determined, so that we may consider the apostles and prophets as foundational, being perfectly aligned with Christ, continuing to provide a foundation for the Church, through their Word, inspired by the Holy Spirit and recorded for us in the Scriptures; and
Whereas the Church, represented by local church assemblies worldwide under pastoral leadership (Eph. 4:11), has been designated as the organism through which Christ would accomplish His purposes; the Church is the foremost agency for the fulfillment of the Great Commission,
Be it therefore resolved that we, the members of the IBFNA, meeting in Kittery, ME, June 20-22, 2017, do honor the Church as the Body of Christ, fulfilling His will and propagating His Gospel, representing local churches, which exercise the full autonomy and full biblical authority to provide personnel, resources and ministries necessary to build His Church. Therefore, the pastor and people of local churches are directly accountable before God for their responsibilities to fulfill the works of evangelism and edification of believers in obedience to His Word and for His praise and glory.
Be it further resolved that the authority of the local church prevails over any and all other para-church organizations, including schools, agencies and associations, and cannot delegate or surrender its God-given authority and responsibility to any other body, including any man-made church hierarchy that would threaten the autonomy of the local church.
Be it finally resolved that we express our gratitude for the continuing ministry of the Holy Spirit through the Church Age as He convicts the sinner’s heart of the need for salvation and provides the New Birth, whereby we are added to the Body of Christ. It is His ministry of sealing believers (II Cor. 1:22) and indwelling them as a pledge of assurance of their salvation that encourages our hearts and motivates us to faithfully serve Christ (Rom. 8:16).