This is part II of my assignment. It is a handbook that I have created for a mock youth ministry as if I were the youth pastor. Enjoy!
OASIS BAPTIST CHURCH
Our purpose as a student ministry is to connect students and their families to God and His gospel of Jesus Christ and to equip those students to share the love that they experience from God with others. Students should be able to discern a course of action in any of the difficult situations that adolescents might go through from this ministry’s use of Scripture, leadership in discipleship and accountability, and love that finds its foundation in Christ. Students should leave this ministry with the ability and the determination to go wherever the Lord might lead them practicing obedience and daily surrender to His Word.
“Know God and share His love. Know what to do and go do it.”
*Note: Scripture references are footnoted to make it easier to follow which reference is referring to which doctrine. All references to Scripture are in ESV.
Theology Proper (God the Father):
I believe in God the Father who is one God. He is eternal and was not created, but He has no beginning and no end. There is nothing that is greater than He is, as He is Holy, supreme, and unique. God the Father exists in three persons and is triune in nature, along with God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Of these three, God the Father is the first member. God is omniscient (all-knowing) in that He knows all things before and after they happen. He is omnipresent (everywhere-present) in that God is everywhere all at the same time. He is omnipotent (all-powerful) in that He is powerful enough to do whatever He wants to accomplish without limits. God the Father is omnisapient (all-wise) in that He has every capability to apply all of His knowledge in a way that will bring the most amount of glory to Himself. God is omnibenevolent (all-good) in that He is all-loving and infinitely good in everything that He is and in everything that He does. He is the creator of everything in the universe, and likewise, He is the sustainer of everything that He creates. Yet, God is not deistic, but instead He is theistic in that He is actively involved in His creation and did not just create the universe and then leave it to itself. Also, God is transcendent to His creation, meaning, He goes beyond His creation, and is not limited by or to what He has created.
Christology (Jesus Christ):
Jesus Christ is eternally the second person of the Trinity. There is no difference between Jesus and God. He is the begotten Son of the Father God. Jesus took on a human form when He came to earth with the expressed purpose of dying for the sins of humanity. The Creator became the creation when He was conceived of the virgin Mary through the Holy Spirit. Jesus, when He was alive on Earth, was 100 percent man and 100 percent God at the same time. In taking on human form, Jesus Christ became not only fully human on Earth, but He remains fully human, while still being fully God. Jesus was crucified, He was completely dead, and then after three days He rose again to life. Jesus appeared to many people before ascending into heaven with the promise to come back to Earth again to establish His Kingdom.
Pneumatology (The Holy Spirit):
The third person of the one Trinity is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, but He is equally God. In being God, the Spirit was active in creation and in inspiring the authors of the Word of God. He is responsible for the miracle that is the virgin birth of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit restrains Satan’s power so that he cannot completely rule this world through the use of the believer, the Church, and the nations. He dwells within the believer as the believer’s body is the temple of God.
All of humanity was created by God. On the sixth day of creation, the first humans, Adam and Eve were created by God. God created man out of the dust of the earth and breathed life into him. Man is made in the image or the likeness of God, meaning that we share some characteristics and even qualities of God, even though we are by no means fully God. We are the greatest of God’s creation; we are blessed among all other creatures and before all of creation, and we are given dominion over all of creation. Man is made up of three parts, body, spirit and soul. However, there is only one race – the human race.
Bibliology (The Bible):
The Bible is the very Word of God and was breathed out by Him. All Scripture has been written by men who were inspired by the God to write down exactly what He wanted to be written down. Both the Old and New Testaments are focused on the person of Jesus Christ as the central theme of all Scripture. The Bible is special revelation from God to man not just to give us the story of Jesus and His sacrifice for mankind, but Scripture also unveils the very characteristics and nature of God, in addition to showing us ways that we can worship Him. We can understand Scripture only through the Holy Spirit who opens our eyes and minds to what we read. We are also able to compare different Scripture in its historical background, the grammar used, and literary use of the author’s original language and style to further understand the meaning of Scripture. The different versions that we have today are not changing Scripture, but are in line with the original texts and various manuscripts that have been collected. Additionally, an omnipotent God would not allow His very words to be changed, because the Word is God, and God cannot change. Further, more than any other literature, the Bible has the most amount of manuscripts closest to its original documents in accordance with the technological advances of the varies times that it was written and then compiled, making its words just as true and valid today as they were 2,000, and even 6,000 years ago.
Sin came upon mankind from the free choice that was made by the first man, Adam, and his wife, Eve, to deliberately disobey God. While God created everything, He did not create sin; He created free will out of His love for His creation, which made evil possible and therefore allowed man to sin but did not cause him to sin. The first sin brought death, both physical and spiritual, into the world. Another result is that all humans from conception are sinners by nature, as seen in our willfully sinning without even being taught how to sin. Therefore, since every man and woman lives in sin, they are subject to the eternal judgment and condemnation that is the punishment for that sin, which is death, not just in the physical realm but also in the spiritual realm.
Because every person ever to live is inherently sinful and because God ultimately cannot be present with sin, God appointed His own Son to be punished for all of mankind so that man might once again be able to be present with God. Jesus Christ came to Earth in obedience to the Father, lived a perfect life, and died in the place of mankind so that every man has the ability to choose to follow Christ and accept the salvation that He has provided for us. A person is saved from eternal separation from God in Hell through faith in Jesus Christ alone. Zero works are necessary for one to receive this salvation with the lone exception of accepting Jesus’ call to follow Him through complete surrender in faith. However, once a person has received salvation in faith, their response to God’s grace will be obedience to His Word and His call. Upon receiving God’s gift of salvation, the believer is made righteous, and he is not only assured of Heaven after this life, but is given the Holy Spirit who indwells in him as a believer in this life. Every believer also, though he still has the ability to sin, he likewise has the ability to choose not to sin.
Ecclesiology (The Church):
The Church is both a local body of believers as well as a global network of brothers and sisters in Christ who are connected by His blood and who come together to worship God. The Church is under the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ who established it, and His Holy Word, though it is also self-governing. The Church, both on the local and global level, is commissioned to evangelize their communities as well as the world, making more disciples of Jesus to add to the body of Christ. There are two ordinances that were commissioned by Christ Himself that are to be observed by the Church, and those being the serving of the Lord’s Table, and the believer’s baptism. The leaders of the Church are to hold the offices of pastors and deacons, whose purposes are to teach, preach, shepherd, serve the Church, and equip leaders, among other things. Every believer in the Church is given spiritual gifts from the Holy Spirit which they are able to use for the work of the Lord. The Church is called a body because each person possesses different gifts from the Spirit, and it functions like a body, needing every member to operate correctly, with Christ as the head.
Eschatology (End Times):
At the current moment we are living in the age of the Church, and the rapture, or to put it better, the snatching-up of all believers into the air to meet with Jesus, is what will happen next and is imminent. These believers will then face the Bema Seat Judgment where they receive their rewards for the good things that they have done during their lives, only to throw those rewards back at the feet of God. Once every true believer in Jesus Christ has been taken into the clouds with Him, the Antichrist will appear and sign a treaty with Israel that will last for seven years. The first three and a half years of this treaty are called the Tribulation, however, halfway into this treaty, the Antichrist will break the treaty and call the world together against Israel. The Beast will then emerge and spark the Great Tribulation where every person will receive the mark of The Beast on their hand and forehead. At the end of the Great Tribulation, the Battle of Armageddon will take place, and the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ will soon follow. Once Christ returns, Satan will be bound in chains for one thousand years during the Millennial Kingdom. At the end of these one thousand years, there will be one final rebellion from Satan, which will be followed by the Great White Throne Judgment where all who rejected Jesus’ gift of salvation will be judged for their sins. Then, finally, God will make a new heaven and a new earth, and His followers will worship Him for eternity, while those who rejected Him will spend eternity in Hell without God.
- I. WHEN OUTSIDE OF CHURCH
When leaders are not within the walls of the church building and when they are not participating in church-related events, it is still of paramount importance that they remain accountable to the mission statement, doctrinal statement, each other, the pastors, and most importantly, to God and His Word. It is mainly outside of the walls of the church’s building that one’s testimony is made. If a leader is not on guard all the time, he/she will get caught up in sin and that sin could destroy both their creditability with students and parents as well as ruin their ministry and whatever influence they previously had. Leaders are still expected to adhere as closely as they are able to do to the guidelines for elders and older women in Titus 1-2. The expectations that are mentioned later on pages 9-10 for interaction with the opposite gender and with other leaders still hold true in this realm as well. They church should not be seen as a sacred place where everyone goes to be on their best behavior and then go out into the world and live a completely different life. Be as consistent outside of church as you are inside of church. In fact, be even more consistent outside of church so that you might be a testimony to the nonbelievers who are constantly watching you. Souls are still at stake. Do not get overconfident, but instead be over-careful in everything that you do outside of church and its ministries.
- II. DURING EVENTS/SERVICES
When leaders are within the walls of the church building for services, serving in ministries, or for any other reason, or even if they are not on the church campus but are serving at a church sponsored or even church related event, then there are certain expectations that should be kept. Every leader needs to be sensitive to the convictions of those around them, even if they do not share the same convictions. Paul says in Romans 14:13 that we should “not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” Therefore, leaders should act and talk in an understanding way around those who may not share the same convictions. Our church is made up of a lot of people who have various beliefs and values. The people are your brothers and sisters in Christ. Some of you might have to dress more modestly than you normally would. Some of you might have to not talk about certain topics that might offend others should they hear you. This might include but is not limited to movies, pop-culture, sensitive or age inappropriate topics, any gossip (which should not be present in our lives anyway), and politics. There are a time and place for some of these things, with the exclusion of that which goes against Scripture, but on our church campus or during our church related events are neither the time nor the place to discuss these things.
We want to protect both our members and visitors from stumbling or being offended. Leaders especially should be on guard. They are to set the example, so leaders are expected to be more careful in how they act and what they say than anyone else might have to be. Leaders have influence, and if by some careless act someone is offended by a leader, that influence could be lost.
- III. WHEN INTERACTING WITH OPPOSITE GENDER
There are many different situations in which one might encounter the opposite gender, and in each of those situations he/she must act properly and appropriately so as to keep his/her integrity along with the integrity of the people with whom they are interacting. When a leader is married, they should not truly be close to any member of the opposite gender beyond their spouse. So, private conversations with someone of the opposite gender are unneeded. Being in the same room alone with someone of the opposite gender who you are not married to is inappropriate. Likewise, being in a vehicle alone in the same situation is improper. 1 Thessalonians 5:22 says to “avoid every kind of evil.” Or some translations say to avoid “all appearances of evil.” So, a leader should not even put themselves in a situation that could be interpreted as inappropriate.
A leader who is not married must be equally careful about how they interact with the opposite gender. Especially when interacting with the students themselves, leaders must be careful that they are not being flirtatious with students. Do not even get into conversations or situations in which that could be the interpretation that onlookers could have. Interaction between leaders will be discussed in the next section, but discretion must be used there as well.
For both groups of people, leaders should never be alone with a teenager. This even applies when they are of the same gender. If meeting with a student in the office, then keep the door and blinds open, and let someone know that you are in there with them. Invite your spouse or another pastor into the meeting with you. Do something, but do not do nothing and subject yourself to the possible consequences of such an action.
The general rule here is that leaders must remember that there are two kinds of people in this world, people who are their brothers and sisters in Christ, and people who are on the path to Hell. Both should be treated with respect and with love that is particular to their situation. Also, always avoid the appearance of wrong-doing.
- IV. WHEN INTERACTING WITH OTHER LEADERS
Interaction between other leaders should be professional and intentional. Everything about this ministry should be intentionally emulating the gospel and the love that is found in it. So, be intentional when you talk to other leaders. When He was on earth, Jesus was intentional in absolutely every aspect of His life. He was constantly teaching. View your interaction with other leaders as an opportunity to showcase to students exactly what you want them to learn.
It should be noted that leaders who are single will be held to the standard that they will not enter into any romantic relationship with another leader on our team. If that should happen, then at least one, or both, of the leaders will lose their responsibilities as leaders serving in this ministry. Relationships between members of leadership only cause unnecessary drama that can and should be avoided. If a two leaders want to explore a relationship, then at least one of them must step down from their leadership position.
In addition to this, leaders of the opposite sex are expected to exemplify what it means to have proper relations with each other without things getting inappropriate. Always treat fellow leaders of the opposite gender as sisters and brothers in Christ, and nothing more.
Those who are married on the leadership team must respect those around them when they relate to each other. Personal displays of affection is something that should be avoided at all times, unless it is somehow edifying to the group through a lesson or illustration that might be able to impact students positively. However, careful discretion should be used in this case. In fact, if any affection is to be shown, it must be prayed over first and a wise decision must be made about its use.
Any interaction other leaders should benefit the students more than it does either of the leadership.
Protocol for emergencies:
During emergencies, it is incredibly important to stay calm as much as you can. You can do this! But remember, you are the leader, so lead sacrificially like Jesus did. There need not be a detailed explanation of what to do in every possible situation, because a week later something else would come up that is not on that list. Instead, just be a servant leader. Direct people in the ways that they need to go to keep safe. Give people advice when they are completely lost. Do everything that you need to do to keep others safe.
Jon Constant – (810) 555-6302, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kyle Riddell – (810) 555-0753, email@example.com
Steve Stork – (810) 555-6111, firstname.lastname@example.org
Nancy Harper – (810) 555-2408, email@example.com
Harold Harper – (810) 555-9672, firstname.lastname@example.org
 Deuteronomy 4:35; 6:4
Exodus 3:13-14; Deuteronomy 33:27
 Genesis 1:26; Luke 3:22
 Job 34:21-23; Psalm 139:6; Daniel 2:19-23;
 Psalm 139:7-12; Proverbs 15:3
 Job 42:2; Matthew 19:26
 Job 12:13; Psalm 147:5; Isaiah 40:28; Romans 11:33
 Psalm 107:1; 1 John 4:8
 Genesis 1-3; Isaiah 43:7; Mark 13:19; Colossians 1:16
 Colossians 1:17; Hebrews 1:3
 Hebrews 4:12; Ephesians 2:1-7
 Psalm 97:9; Isaiah 55:8-9; Ephesians 4:6
 Isaiah 9:6; Matthew 1:23; John 8:58
 Psalm 2:7; John 3:16
 John 6:38; Hebrews 2:17;4:15;
 Isaiah 7:14; Luke 2:1-20
 Colossians 2:9
 1 Timothy 2:5; Colossians 2:9
 John 19:16-27
 John 19:31-36
 John 20:1-10; Romans 6:8-11; Philippians 3:10-12
 John 21:1-14; Acts 1:1-11
 Psalm 139:7-8; Romans 8:26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-1; 1 Corinthians 12:7-11; Ephesians 4:30
 Genesis 1:26; 1 Corinthians 2:9-13; 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 20-21
 Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:26-38
 Luke 10:19; James 4:7
 Matthew 16:18-19; Ephesians 6:10-12
 Exodus 14:8
 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
 Genesis 1:26-31; Psalm 148:5; Isaiah 45:12; Matthew 19:4
 Genesis 1:26;
 Genesis 1:28; Luke 12:24
 Genesis 2:7; 1 Corinthians 2:9-11; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 4:12
 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 3:16
 Jeremiah 1:9; Acts 1:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21
 Luke 24:27; Romans 3:21-26; 1 Corinthians 15:45
 Psalm 149; Isaiah 40:28-31; John 14:21-24; John 20:31; Romans 9:14-18; Hebrews 1:12; 1 John 4:8
 Matthew 11:25; 1 Corinthians 2:12-14; 1 John 2:20; 27
 Jeremiah 1:17; Malachi 3:6; John 1:1
 Genesis 3:1-7; 12-13; Romans 5:12
 Deuteronomy 30:19; Joshua 24:15; James 1:13
 Genesis 2:17; 3:19
 Psalm 51:5; Romans 5:12-14
 Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23; Hebrews 9:27
 Habakkuk 1:13
 2 Corinthians 5:2
 John 10:17-18; Romans 10:9-10; Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:8-9
 John 14:6
 Ephesians 2:8-9
 James 2:14-17
 John 10:28; Romans 5:17; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
 1 Corinthians 10:13; James 4:7
 Acts 1:8; 20:28; Galatians 3:28
 John 4:27
 Matthew 16:18; 1 Corinthians 3:11
 Revelation 22:18-19
 1 Timothy 3:1-13
 Matthew 28:16-20
 Matthew 3:13-17; Matthew 26:26-29; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26
 1 Timothy 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-16
 Romans 12:3-8; 1 Corinthians 12:1-11; Ephesians 4:11-16
 1 Corinthians 12:12-31
 Matthew 24:36-44; John 5:24; Romans 5:1; 8:1; 1 Thessalonians 1:9
 1 Corinthians 3:10-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10;
 Daniel 7:8; Revelation 13:1-18
 Revelation 17:5-6
 Daniel 7:23; Revelation 13:5-8; 15-17
 Daniel 11:40-45; Revelation 16:12-16
 Revelation 19:11-21
 Revelation 20:1-3
 Revelation 20:7-10
 Revelation 20:11-15
 Matthew 24:25; Hebrews 1:10-12; 2 Peter 3:10-13; Revelation 21:1-4
 Matthew 23:33; Matthew 25:4; Revelation 20:14-15