From the Board of Elders
Dear Members in Christ,
Church doctrines and Membership “… that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.” Ephesians 6:20
The Annual Congregation Meeting cum Election of Session Members was to be held on 26th June 2021. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the imposition of Full Movement Control Order, the Event had to be postponed. The date is yet to be determined, and, will be determined when the Covid-19 infectivity rate falls to an acceptable level set by the Government Authority.
The Annual Congregation Meeting (ACM) cum Election of Session Members was to be conducted to meet the laws of the land. However, as Calvary Jaya Bible-Presbyterian Fellowship (CJBPF) is a spiritual body, the proceedings are conducted in a spiritual manner according to the teachings of the Bible. The ACM is held every year to share and discuss the activities of CJBPF of the past year and also to share the program for the coming year. However, the Election of the Session Members is held every 3 years. The Session members are the Elders, Deacons and Deaconess and they must be of the BP faith and practice. The qualifications for the respective Office of the Elders (1 Timothy 3: 2-7; Titus 1:6-9) and Deacons (1 Timothy 3: 8-13) are set forth in the Word of God.
Members of CJBPF are encouraged to attend and participate in the ACM and Election of the Session Members. This is an opportunity to keep abreast and participate in the Lord’s work. Regular worshippers are also invited to be observers but are not permitted to ask question nor participate in the Election.
To the question as to why CJBPF has to elect the Session Members every 3 years? Answer: From historical records, churches had gone astray and ultimately fallen into apostasy when false teaches with false doctrines infiltrated the churches resulting in fundamental leaders straying from the common faith. The founding father of the BP faith, the late Rev (Dr) Timothy Tow, in God’s wisdom, decided to introduce a 3-year limit for the Session leadership of the BP Churches. Thus, in the event that there is a necessity to remove a strayed, corrupt or apostate leader, the Congregation can do so during the Church election. This is the safety measure built into the BP Constitution. If there is no provision for such removal, the Church will finally fall into apostasy and thus an additional fallen citadel for the work of the Devil.
What does CJBPF mean to you? The question itself beckons an answer from each one of us who are members or regular worshippers to CJBPF.
When someone asks:
1) What is Bible Presbyterian?
2) What is the doctrinal stand (Statement of Faith) of CJBPF?
3) Why is CJBPF so conservative in her doctrines and worship?
4) Why is CJBPF promoting the use of KJV Bible?
5) Why is CJBPF so firm in its doctrinal stand on the Doctrines of Separation, Verbal Plenary Inspiration (VPI) and Verbal Plenary Preservation (VPP)?
6) Why does CJBPF not practise the charismatic way of worship?
Please take note that the doctrines that CJBPF embrace is not her own BUT that of the doctrines found and taught in the Word of God that has been kept pure and preserved over the generations for our learning and sharing.
If you have been attending CJBPF for the last few years, as a member of CJBPF or as a regular worshipper, I believe you have the answers to all these basic questions. If not, you have to quickly learn and know in order to engage anyone that asks the reasons for your faith. “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” 1 Peter 3:15. As a member and regular worshippers of CJBPF, let us always be ready and be able to share the reasons why “we worship in CJBPF” e.g. Why are CJBPF doctrines important, and what do they mean to you, otherwise, there is no difference worshipping in CJBPF or in other churches. Further, you need to be able to respond to the question of “are all churches the same?” Prayerfully, they would learn and join us to worship in CJBPF.
As a believer, we need to know and embrace the BP doctrines and share with them who enquires about the reasons of our faith. You do not need to be a theologian, an Elder, Deacon or Deaconess to answer these questions. Do not make the mistake that the questions are for the leaders of the CJBPF only. We are all witnesses for Christ and are placed in our own respective environment to boldly testify and share the Word of God to those that the Lord brings into our midst. It is always not too late to study the Word of God.
Are you a member of the CJBPF especially when you have been worshipping in CJBPF for many years? If not, it is time to decide. It is time to be a member of CJBPF. From the reading of the Bible, you would have noticed that God raises up local churches for the body of believers. The Bible says that believers in Christ are like sheep which need loving tender care and guidance to grow and live. God does not expect a saved sheep to be lonely and walking alone with no home to go to or be cared for. Out in the wilderness on its own, the sheep is subjected to many challenges, fears and temptations. It is on its own. A lost sheep would easily be led astray by the evil one or loses its way. God’s sheep should not be alone. The sheep needs loving tender care. The sheep needs to be directed, sheltered, defended, protected and provided for in order to have healthy growth.
The Apostle Paul had been appointed by God to raise, teach, preach and look after God’s flock. His two well-known disciples, namely Timothy and Titus are another 2 good examples of leaders who are called to raise and build up the body of Christ. Believers gather together locally in churches to encourage, provoke one another unto good works and in worship. They look and care for one another. Local leaders were raised to look after the spiritual and physical welfare of the flock including the building of the spiritual faith. God also uses leaders to rebuke His flock when the flock strays from Him. God also rewards His flock when the local church grows, trusts, obeys and carries out His commandments.
Thus, as we sojourn on this earth doing God’s work, we should seriously join, and become a member of a local church, which is (1) of the fundamental faith (2) proclaims the Jesus Christ of the Bible and (3) contend for the faith which once delivered unto the saints. “Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” Hebrews 10:23-25.
A sheep knows and goes to its sheepfold and know its shepherd. The sheep follows and trust its shepherd knowing that the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep. If you are a sheep without a sheepfold or home to go to, do seriously pray that God will guide and lead you to one. God raises up local churches to provide for His people to gather in worship, learning, caring for one another and for His testimony. We invite you to be a member of CJBPF to serve the Lord together in striving together for the faith of the gospel.
To God be the Glory!
Eld. Choe Tong Seng