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September 02, 2005

A Letter from the Chairman of Council of Eighteen: September 2005

Study of Biblical Separation: Invitation from the Council of Eighteen
The Council of Eighteen is undertaking a study of Biblical separation as it applies to the GARBC. This study will be presented at next year's Conference in Lansing, Michigan. The Council desires input from fellowshipping pastors and churches in the preparation of its report. Click below for guidelines for submitting ideas. You will also find this information in the August/September issue of The Baptist Bulletin. Input must be received by October 10, 2005. 
Dear Fellowshipping Churches,

At its 2004 fall meeting, the Council of Eighteen considered a request by Cedarville University to participate in Talents For Christ (TFC) and to display at the GARBC Conference in Lakeland, Florida. The Council voted 10 to 6 not to grant Cedarville’s request for the following reasons:

  • The constitution and by-laws of the GARBC give the Council responsibility for deciding such matters.
  • The messengers at the annual business meeting on June 30, 2004, were informed of the policy to limit participation in TFC and exhibiting at the Annual Conference to colleges and mission agencies that agree with the Articles of Faith and purpose statement of the GARBC and that are Baptist in name, sub-name, or corporate name.
  • The majority on the Council considered Cedarville’s unofficial but public partnership with the Southern Baptists of Ohio as inconsistent with the Articles of Faith and purpose statement as adopted and practiced historically by the GARBC.

On June 27 and 28, 2005, the Council of Eighteen met for its annual pre-conference meeting in Lakeland, Florida. In response to concern and/or disagreement regarding the above decision expressed by a portion of the Council and of the GARBC constituency, and because of the intent of the Council of Eighteen to consistently and accurately understand and implement separation as taught in the Bible, the Council decided to explore and discuss the issues involved in the decision regarding Cedarville’s participation in TFC and exhibiting at the GARBC Conference.

In an attempt to broaden the discussion to future situations, the Council determined to focus on the Biblical teaching regarding separation and how it is practiced in the GARBC. The Council will present this study to the messengers at the annual business meeting on June 29, 2006, as evidence of the Council’s concern that these matters be handled Biblically. The Council of Eighteen will ask the messengers to approve its report.

The Council desires input from fellowshipping pastors and churches. I invite you to send your letters by October 10, 2005. Each Council member will receive copies of your input and will have time to digest the material before their November meeting. The input from pastors and churches should be a great help as the Council conducts this study.

Guidelines for letter submission:
1. Any member of a GARBC church may send input concerning the doctrine of ecclesiastical separation and its application to our Fellowship. The letter must be signed by the sender and include the church’s name, city, and state.

2. Input should emphasize the Biblical teaching on separation.

3. Input from each individual will be limited to 2 pages (double-spaced).

4. Input must be received by October 10, 2005.

5. Mail to:  GARBC Council of Eighteen, First Baptist Church, 11400 LaGrange Rd.,
Elyria, OH 44035-7987.

At the 2005 annual meeting, a motion was passed requesting that the Council issue a statement concerning its decision last November about Cedarville University. The Council will address this request and issue a statement 90 days prior to the Annual Conference.

Please pray for our Association as we address these matters. I desire that this discussion will help our Association better define and understand its identity. Hopefully as a result of this process, our Association will serve our churches in a greater way and help them to be more effective for our Savior.

Bradley W. Quick, Pastor
Chairman of GARBC Council of Eighteen

Posted by danderson at September 2, 2005 08:00 AM