We believe, it is the express purpose of God, our Heavenly Father, to call out of the world a saved people, who shall constitute the body or Church of Jesus Christ, built and established upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the Chief Cornerstone; and
That, the members of the body, the Church (ecclesia) of Jesus Christ, are enjoined to assemble themselves together for worship, fellowship, counsel and instruction in the Word of God, the work of the ministry and for the exercise of those spiritual gifts and offices provided for New Testament Church Order; and
That, it is evident that the early Christian churches came together in such fellowship as a representative body of saved, Spirit-filled believers, who ordained and sent out evangelists and missionaries, and who, under the supervision of the Holy Spirit set over the Church Pastors and Teachers: Therefore be it
RESOLVED, that we recognize ourselves as a co-operative fellowship of Pentecostal, Spirit-baptized saints from local Pentecostal Assemblies of like precious faith throughout the Republic of South Africa to be known as the International Assemblies Of God, whose purpose is not to usurp authority over various districts and local Assemblies nor to deprive them of their spiritual methods and order for worship, unity, fellowship, work and business for God, but to disapprove unscriptural methods, doctrines, and conduct, endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the Bond of peace, “till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:13.
ARTICLE 1 … NAME AND IDENTITY
1.1. The full name shall be the International Assemblies of God herein after referred to as the IAG.
1.2. Each local or sovereign Assembly may use any by-name agreed upon by the Assembly.
1.3. The church will exist in its own right as an independent and separate legal persona apart from its members, office bearers and/or any other organization or institution and will be able to sue or be sued in its own right as a legal entity,
1.4. Any changes to the membership and/or office bearers will in no manner change the identity or the existence of the organization.
1.5. The church will operate in the form and function of a public benefit organization and a non-profit organization.
ARTICLE 2…. TERRITORY
The territory shall be the Republic of South Africa.
ARTICLE 3 … DEFINITIONS AND INTERPRETATIONS
- Dependent Assembly – A congregation having less than 50 but more than 15 active members.
2. Sovereign Assembly–A congregation of more than 50 active members which can take care of its own administration and support the minister /s financially.
3. Preaching Point – A congregation which numbers less than 15 members.
4. General council – A body which meets biannually and is comprised of all ministers and spouses, delegates from the Sovereign Assemblies and General Departmental Committees.
5. General Presbytery – A body comprised of General Officers, Presidents and Secretaries of all District Presbyteries.
6. General Officers – Executive committee members of the church.
7. District Presbytery – Ordained, Licensed and Certified ministers and their spouses.
8. District Council – District Presbytery with delegates from Sovereign Assemblies and departments.
9. District Presbytery Officers – District Executive committee members.
10. Departments – Ministries specialization such as the Men, Women, Youth, etc.
11. Missionary Field Fellowship – Missionaries assigned to work with IAG.
ARTICLE 4 … NATURE
The International Assemblies of God is a co-operative fellowship based upon mutual agreements voluntarily entered into by its membership.
ARTICLE 5 … AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
Section 1: To approve all scriptural teachings, methods and conduct; and to disapprove unscriptural teachings, methods and conduct.
Section 2: To encourage and promote evangelism, and missions.
Section 3: To provide a basis of fellowship among Christians of like precious faith.
Section 4: It shall have the right to exercise any of the powers of which true voluntary associations are capable, whose purpose is not the acquisition of gain, under local and provincial authority.
Section 5: To have the right to own, hold in trust, use, sell, convey, mortgage, leases or otherwise dispose of, such property, real or chattel, as may be needed for the prosecution of its work. The General council officers shall be Custodians and Trustees of all real properties.
Section 6: It shall not acquire properties and assets for gain, but shall employ all properties and assets for the furtherance of its objectives as outlined in this Constitution.
Section 7: To establish and maintain departments and institutions as may be necessary for the propagation of the gospel, and the work of the ministry.
ARTICLE 6 … POWERS
The I.A.G is a body corporate constituted in terms of relevant laws applicable in the Republic of South Africa and this Constitution and shall, subject to the provisions hereof, have all such powers that vest in a body corporate having a legal personality independently from its members.
Without derogating from the generality of Section 1 above, the I.A.G shall have the power to, inter alia:
(a) Institute, defend or be a party to legal proceedings in its own name.
(b) Acquire rights and incur obligations.
(c) Enter into and enforce contracts.
(d) In its own name acquire, alienate or in any way deal with movable, immovable, corporeal, incorporeal, intellectual or any other form of property or rights in property.
(e) Secure, receive and pay loans obtained for the purposes of advancing, promoting or accomplishing its mission.
(f) Enter into contracts of employment as an employer, and accordingly remunerate its employees.
(g) Open and hold bank accounts in its name.
(h) Subject to the law applicable, invest its resources or property in any manner it deems fit.
Not withstanding anything herein contained, the church may not utilize its income, profits, earnings, or any realization of its assets for any purpose whatsoever other than the advancement, promotion and accomplishment of its mission; and the church is specifically precluded from sharing with, ceding to or passing over to any other person, natural or legal, its income and profits howsoever earned and sourced.
The church shall, vis-à-vis its members, have the power to approve all scriptural teachings, methods and conduct; and to disapprove unscriptural teachings, methods and conduct.
ARTICLE 7 … PRINCIPLES
The International Assemblies of God shall strive to represent the body of Christ as described in the New Testament Scriptures, recognizing the principles inherent in that body as also inherent in this fellowship, particularly the principles of unity and co-operation. Its purpose is to maintain conditions under which it can, as a fellowship, demonstrate these principles and their consequent development.
ARTICLE 8 … STATEMENT OF FUNDAMENTAL TRUTHS
The statement of our Fundamental Truths is based on the belief that the Bible is our all-sufficient rule for faith and practice. This Statement of Fundamental Truths, contained in section 1 to section 18 below, is intended simply as a basis of fellowship among us (i.e. that we all speak the same thing, 1 Corinthians 1:10; Acts 2:42). The phraseology employed in this Statement is not inspired or contended for, but the truth set forth is held to be essential to a Full Gospel Ministry. No claim is made that it contains all Biblical truth, only that it covers our need as to these Fundamental Doctrines.
Section 1: The Scriptures Inspired
The Scriptures, both the Old and New Testaments, are verbally inspired of God, and are the revelation of God to man, the infallible, authoritative rule of faith and conduct (2 Timothy 3:15-17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:21).
Section 2: The One True God
The one true God who has revealed Himself in the Three Persons of God the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
Section 3: God the Father
The one true God has revealed Himself as the eternal self-existent “I AM”, the Creator of Heaven and earth and the Redeemer of mankind. He has further revealed Himself as embodying the principles of relationship and association as Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 43:10; Matthew 28:19; Luke 3:22).
Section 4: The Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ
The Lord Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. The Scriptures declare:
(a) His virgin birth (Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:31, 35).
(b) His sinless life (Hebrews 7:26; 1 Peter 2:22).
(c) His miracles (Acts 2:22; 10:38).
(d) His substitutionary work of the Cross (1 Corinthians 5:21).
(e) His bodily resurrection from the dead (Matthew 28:6; Luke 24:39; 1 Corinthians 15:4).
(f) His exaltation to the right hand of God (Acts 1:9, 11; 2:33; Philippians
2:9-11; Hebrews 1-3).
Section 5: The Deity of the Holy Spirit
The Scriptures declare the Divinity of the Holy Spirit
(a) Co-Creator with the Father and the Son (Genesis 1:26; John1:1; Psalms 33:6)
(b) His role in the birth of Jesus (Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:35)
(c) He gives life to the believers (2 Corinthians 3:7)
(d) He writes God’s Law in the believers’ hearts (2 Corinthians 3:3)
(e) He is called to continue the work of Jesus Christ (John 14:15)
(f) He is the Church’s Comforter and Teacher (John 14:15-17; 24-26; 15:20-
27; Ephesians 4:30)
Section 6: The Fall of Man
Man was created good and upright; for God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” However man, by voluntary transgression, fell and thereby incurred not only physical death but also spiritual death, which is separation from God (Genesis 3:8; 23-24; Romans 5:12-19)
Section 7: The Salvation of Man
Man’s only hope of redemption is through the shed Blood of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
(a) Conditions to Salvation
Salvation is received through repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ. By the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost, being justified by grace through faith, man becomes an heir of God according to the Hope of Eternal Life (Luke 24:47; John 3:3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 2:8; Titus 2:11; 3:5-7).
(b) The Evidence of Salvation
The inward evidence of salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit (Romans 8:16). The outward evidence to all men is a life of righteousness and true holiness (Ephesians 4:24; Titus 2:12).
Section 8: The Sacraments of the Church
(a) Baptism in Water
The ordinance of Baptism by immersion is commanded in the Scriptures. All who repent and believe in Christ, as Saviour and Lord are to be baptized. Thus they declare to the world that they have died with Christ and that they also have been raised with Him to walk in newness of life (Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 10:47; Romans 6:4).
(b) Holy Communion
The Lord’s Supper, consisting of the elements – bread and the fruit of the vine – is the symbol expressing our sharing the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:4; a memorial of His suffering and death (1 Corinthians 11:26); and is enjoined on all believers “till He comes!”
Section 9: The Baptism in the Holy Spirit
All believers are entitled to and should ardently expect and earnestly seek the promise of the Father, the Baptism in the Holy Spirit and Fire, according to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ. This was the normal experience of all in the early Christian Church. With it comes the enduement of power for life and service, the bestowment of the Gifts and their uses in the work of the ministry (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4, 8; 1 Corinthians 12:1-31). This experience is distinct from and subsequent to the experience of the New Birth (Acts 8:12-17; 10:44-46; 11:14-15; 15:7-9). With the baptism in the Holy Spirit come such experiences as an overflowing fullness of the Spirit (John 7:37-39; Acts 4:8), a deepened reverence for God (Acts 2:43; Hebrews 12:28), an intensified consecration to God and dedication to His work (Acts 2:42), and a more active love for Christ, for His word and for the Lost (Mark 16:20).
Section 10: The Initial Physical Evidence of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit
The baptism of believers in the Holy Ghost is witnessed by the initial physical sign of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives them utterance (Acts 2:4). The speaking in tongues in this instance is the same in essence as the gift of tongues (1 Corinthians 12:4-10, 28), but different in purpose and use.
Section 11: The Church
The Church is the Body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit, with divine appointments for the fulfilment of her great commission. Each believer, born of the Spirit, is an integral part of the General Assembly and Church of the First-born, which are written in Heaven (Ephesians 1:22, 23; 2:22; Hebrews 12:23).
Section 12: Sanctification
Sanctification is an act of separation from that which is evil, and of dedication unto God (Romans 12:1; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 13:12). The Scriptures teach a life of “Holiness without which no man shall see the Lord,” (Hebrews 12:14). By the power of the Holy Ghost we are able to obey the command: “Be ye holy, for I am Holy” (1 Peter 1:15,16).
Sanctification is realized in the believer by recognizing his identification with Christ in His death and resurrection, and by faith reckoning daily upon the fact of that union, and by offering every faculty continually to the dominion of the Holy Spirit (Romans 6:1-11, 8:1, 2, 13; Galatians 2:20; Philippians 2:12, 13: 1 Peter 1:5).
Section 13: The Ministry
A divinely called and scripturally ordained ministry has been provided by our Lord for a two-fold purpose: (1) The evangelization of the World, and (2) The edifying of the Body of Christ (Mark 16:15-20; Ephesians 4:11-13).
Section 14: Divine Healing
Divine healing is an integral part of the Gospel. Deliverance from sickness is provided for in the atonement, and is the privilege of all believers (Isaiah 53:4,5; Matthew 8:16, 17; James 5:14-16).
Section 15: The Blessed Hope
The resurrection of those who have fallen asleep in Christ and their translation together with those who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord, is the imminent and Blessed Hope of the Church (1 Thessalonians 4:16,17; Romans 8:23; Titus 2:13; 1 Corinthians 15:51, 52).
Section 16: The Millennial Reign of Christ
The second coming of Christ includes the rapture of the saints, which is our Blessed Hope, followed by the visible return of Christ with His saints to reign on the earth for one thousand years (Zechariah 14:5; Matthew 24:27, 30; Revelation 1:7; 19:11-14; 20:1-6). This millennial reign will bring the salvation of general Israel (Ezekiel 37:21, 22; Zephaniah 3:19, 20; Romans 11:26, 27) and the establishment of universal peace (Isaiah 11:6-9; Psalm 72:3-8; Micah 4:3, 4).
Section 17: The Final Judgement
There will be a final judgement in which the wicked dead will be raised and judged according to their works. “Whosoever is not found written in the Book of Life,” together with the devil and his angels, the beast and the false prophet, will be consigned to everlasting punishment in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Matthew 25:46; Mark 9:43-48; Revelation 19:20; 20:11-15; 21:8).
Section 18: The New Heavens and the New Earth
“We, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelled righteousness.” (2 Peter 3:13; Revelation 21:22).
ARTICLE 9 … RELATIONSHIPS
The International Assemblies of God, while being an independent and a self-administrating body, recognizes its mutual relationship doctrinally and co-operatively with the World Assemblies of God Fellowship. The general council shall prosecute its activities through its general executive officers.
ARTICLE 10 … GENERAL COUNCIL MEETINGS
Regular sessions of the General council shall be held biannually, pursuant to a call by the General Presbytery.
Special sessions of the General council may be arranged if agreed upon by two-thirds of the General Presbytery.
The right of initiative in calling a special session of the General council may also be granted if a statement of the reasons for calling a special session is signed by a simple majority of the Ordained and Licensed Ministers of the Assemblies of God and shall be filed with the executive officers. The executive officers shall thereupon issue a call for a special session in accordance with the petition. The petitioning group shall have the right to call the said General council if the executive officers should refuse to heed the petition within thirty days of the receipt thereof.
ARTICLE 11 … VOTING CONSTITUENCY OF THE GENERAL COUNCIL
The voting constituency of the general council shall consist of:
(a) All credentialed ministers with one of the district presbytery, and their spouses.
(b) All executive committee members of Assemblies God World Missions assigned to work with the International Assemblies of God.
(c) Each sovereign assembly which has been set in order and holds a letter of recognition from its district, shall be entitled to one delegate from Sovereign Assembly, with a certified letter of recognition.
(d) The chairman and the Secretary or any two nominated members of every national departmental committee.
ARTICLE 12 … EXECUTIVE OFFICERS
The executive officers shall consist of the General President, deputy President, the General Secretary, assistant General Secretary and the General Treasurer. Their terms of office shall be for four (4) years, with staggered terms of office, and shall begin at the time of election and shall continue until the time of the second biennial General council following their election.
The Offices of the General President, General Secretary and General Treasurer shall be full-time depending on the availability of funds.
The General Officers shall be entitled to recommend for appointment of members of staff in keeping with the workload and availability of funds.
ARTICLE 13 ..…. GENERAL PRESBYTERY
The General Presbytery shall consist of:The Executive Officers, district Presidents, Secretaries and two missionary representatives working with IAG.
Regular sessions of the General Presbytery shall be held at least twice in a year.
The convener of General Presbytery meetings shall be the Executive Officers.
The right of initiative in calling a special session of the General Presbytery may be granted if a statement of the reason for calling a special session is signed by a simple majority of General Presbytery members and shall be filed with the General Officers. The Executive Officers shall thereupon issue a call for a special session in accordance with the petition. The petitioning group shall have the right to call the said General Presbytery if the Executive Officers should refuse to heed the petition within thirty days of receipt thereof.
ARTICLE 14 … DISTRICT PRESBYTERY
The district Presbytery shall be comprised of all Ordained, Licensed and Certified Ministers and their Spouses.
The General council shall recognize such district Presbyteries as may be necessary to the development of its work.
The district Presbytery shall have the oversight of the work of the church in its prescribed area, but shall honour the rights of the sovereign assemblies.
The district Presbytery shall have the authority to examine all candidates for certified license and ordination and to recommend them to the General Presbytery for credentials.
The district Presbytery shall elect its own officers and arrange for its own meetings. It shall operate in conformity with this constitution and By-laws.
ARTICLE 15… DISTRICT COUNCILS
It shall consist of:
(a) All certified, licensed and ordained Ministers and their Spouses
(b) One delegate from each Assembly
(c) Chairmen and secretaries of district departmental committees
(d) The Council shall meet at least once in a year
(e) The district president shall be the chairman of the council
ARTICLE 16… ASSEMBLIES
Assemblies shall be considered as those groups of believers who qualify under the standards determined by the General Council for Assemblies.
Dependent Assemblies shall be those congregations that do not qualify as Sovereign Assemblies. They shall co-operate with other assemblies and support District activities.
Congregations which qualify to become Sovereign Assemblies shall be officially set in order by the Officers of the District Presbytery. They shall co-operate with other Assemblies in the area. They shall support the District organization and may send one delegate to the District and General council.
Each Sovereign Assembly has the right of self-government under Jesus Christ and shall have the power to choose and call its own Pastor. It shall elect its own deacons and transact its business as a local unit. It shall have the responsibility to administer discipline to its own members according to the Scriptures and its Constitution.
All Assemblies shall recognize that the General Presbytery has the right and responsibility to approve Scriptural doctrine and conduct and to disapprove unscriptural doctrine and conduct.
All Assemblies and members are expected to contribute to the General Fund annually an amount which shall be determined by the General Presbytery.
ARTICLE 17… PROPERTIES
All Property shall be held in the name of the International Assemblies of God, and shall be under the jurisdiction of the General Council Officers.
The sovereign assembly shall have oversight of all property and shall be responsible to the general officers and the district officers for the care and maintenance thereof.
Any assembly joining IAG with its property, will have the right to retain the property when leaving IAG.
In case of a division of the Assembly, the property shall remain with members who adhere to the policies and tenets of faith of the International Assemblies of God regardless of who is in the majority, provided that they still remain part of IAG as cooperative fellowship. If the whole assembly leaves, property shall be handed over to the general presbytery.
ARTICLE 18…. DISSOLUTION
Should IAG cease to exist as a religious organisation for any reason whatsoever or be dissolved, then all the net assets including the moveable and immoveable property shall be transferred, on terms and conditions to be agreed upon, to another organisation with the same objectives within the Republic of South Africa provided that such an organisation is registered under the legislation covering Public Benefit Organisations and Non-Profit Organisations. This will be done after the settling of all debts and liabilities of this organization.
ARTICLE 19 … AMENDMENTS
Amendments to this Constitution may be made at any duly called General council of the International Assemblies of God provided the proposed amendment shall have been submitted first to the General Presbytery for their consideration, and then in writing to each Ordained, Licensed and Certified minister of the International Assemblies of God, executive committee members of the Missionary Field Fellowship assigned to work with the International Assemblies of God, to each Sovereign Assembly, and to all General Departments for consideration prior to the time of the meeting of the General council. A two–third vote of all the members voting shall be necessary for adoption.
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