1 The Rationale for a Code
Ministry is a call to serve both God and people. Students are firstly accountable to God
(1 Corinthians 4:4-5), but also to church members and those who receive ministry
(Ephesians 4:1-2). Ministers are public figures whose lives are on display and are
viewed with considerable public scrutiny. A high degree of conformity is expected with
the biblical call to holiness (Matthew 5:48; Titus 2:7-8). Accordingly, personal
relationships are to be characterised by love, justice, care, and compassion (Micah 6:8).
A minister is firstly a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ (I John 2:6), and as such ministry is
grounded in prayer, Bible study, regular worship and a readiness to follow the
guidance of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19-20).
Students of Axx are to live and minister in accordance with biblical values. Additionally,
it is expected that the ministry has a code of conduct that sets a benchmark of
excellence for the society in which it seeks to minister. Ministers are to be examples in
the creation of healthy communities. Students are likewise called to the highest
standards as they train for ministry and leadership in the Christian community.
The following Code of Conduct is designed to articulate relevant principles, note areas
of caution, and state what is clearly prohibited in terms of biblical conduct for the
students of Axx.
2 The Purpose of the Code
This Code is intended to guide the behaviour of students of Axx. It is articulated to
assist students to serve in such a manner that it will cause our churches and ministries
and Axx to be safe places for all; places where integrity is honoured, accountability is
practised, misconduct is not concealed, and forgiveness is encouraged to bring about
healing and restoration.
3 The Application of the Code
This Code applies to all students enrolled with Axx, for the duration of their enrolment.
This Code of Conduct sets out the standard that is expected of students and therefore
is an important document for determining whether a person has committed improper
“Improper conduct” means behaviour that is unacceptable and includes (but is not
limited to) conduct in breach of this Code. Improper conduct may result in disciplinary
A breach of a “Prohibited” provision will always be improper conduct and will result in
disciplinary action. A breach of a “Cautionary” provision, depending on the
circumstances may be improper conduct and may result in disciplinary action.
“Disciplinary action” may include expulsion from Axx, suspension from Axx,
suspension from attendance at classes, direction to undertake counselling, direction to
carry out remedial work and/or other action as deemed appropriate by Axx. In the
event of suspension or expulsion from Axx, the student will have no entitlement to a
refund of fees or other financial compensation.
5 The Code of Conduct
5.1 Pastoral Example
Students should live with integrity (1 Timothy 1:11-12). The values of the Gospel of
Christ should be obvious to members of the church and wider society (Matthew 5:16; 1
Corinthians 11:1). It is also important for students to have a healthy lifestyle and a
balance of service, recreation, and family (Ecclesiastes 3:1-11; Titus 1:6).
Students should be good members of the community (Proverbs 24:21; Romans 13:1-
4; 1 Peter 2:11-17). The only rare exception may be when a Christian engages in nonviolent
civil disobedience as a matter of protest (Acts 4:18-20).
Addictive behaviours: Scripture requires that we exercise caution in the use of alcohol
(Proverbs 20:1; 1 Corinthians 6:12; 1 Corinthians 8). Abstinence is a stand that is highly
respected in Axx. Students must not smoke anywhere on Axx premises. Extreme
caution must also be exercised with all potentially addictive and harmful behaviours
that bring unwarranted harm to the body or jeopardise our own or another’s faith.
Language: The use of offensive language should also be avoided (such as swear words,
sexual connotations, and racial or religious slurs).
Students must avoid smoking, vaping, drunkenness, gambling, and abstain from the
use of all illegal and illicit drugs (Romans 13:13; Galatians 5:21).
5.2 Ministry Matters
Authority to minister comes from Jesus Christ; the head of the Church (Matthew 28:18;
1 Corinthians 12:27). Christian leadership must never be manipulative or authoritarian
(John 15:15). Students are servants of Christ, who should endeavour to become
servant leaders as modelled by Jesus (John 13:3-14). Leadership in all its dimensions
must always be accountable, and it is essential that students act responsibly in the best
interests of the entire college community (James 3:1; 1 Peter 5:2-4).
Qualifications: Students must not misrepresent their competence, qualifications,
training, or experience. Students should recognise their level of skill and experience. If
they are unsure, they must seek additional advice from other colleagues or other
Personal Relationships: Students should also be aware of the danger of dependency
developing in personal relationships, and seek supervision or advice when such
concerns arise. A balance should be found between the need for mutual support and
the need for accountability. Students should avoid conflicts of interest between their
personal interests and the interests of those to whom they minister.
Ministry Gifts: Axx encourages the operation of spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 12:7).
There are a variety of gifts (1 Corinthians 12:4) and the true exercise of these gifts will
always be consistent with the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). For example,
prophecy is to be exercised for “strengthening, encouragement and comfort” (1
Corinthians 14:3). Students must always be willing to be held accountable, admitting to
the possibility of human error when exercising the gifts of the Spirit (1 Thessalonians
Public Comments: We live in a society that has become increasingly sensitive to
matters of discrimination and vilification. Students must show respect and godly care
to all people, inside or outside Axx community (Colossians 4:6). Care must be taken in
how students speak of the ministry of Axx, Christian leaders and others in all public
forums (including social networking sites, the internet and email communications)
(Mark 9:40), since reputation is highly valued in Scripture (Proverbs 22:1).
Care must also be exercised when students express a personal opinion on
controversial matters, and distinguish the expressing of personal opinion, from
speaking on behalf of Axx (1 Corinthians 7:12).
Students must not be abusive in any way toward others (1 Timothy 3:2-5; Titus 1:7).
“Abusive” means behaviour that is insulting, injurious, demeaning, offensive,
perverted or vituperative, whether physical, verbal, emotional or spiritual and is
unacceptable. It includes (but is not limited to) conduct in breach of this Code.
Improper conduct may result in disciplinary action.
The misuse of authority can be a particular temptation in leadership and must be
avoided. Students must not attempt to use the gifts of the Holy Spirit to manipulate or
coerce a person. This includes attempting to use healing for financial gain; attributing
miracles for personal glory or using a word of knowledge to control an individual or
using prophecy to change church membership or to enlist support for a ministry.
Accountability in all areas of ministry is essential.
5.3 Sexual Behaviour
Sexuality is a gift from God and integral to human nature. Students must value this gift
by maintaining chastity in singleness and faithfulness in heterosexual marriage
(Proverbs 5:18, 6:32; 1 Corinthians 7:2). All biblically immoral behaviour, including
homosexual behaviour, is not tolerated by Axx.
Axx encourages modesty in personal presentation and dress, both in ministry and
Children: Being especially vulnerable, children are entitled to be safe and protected. All
student interaction with children must be characterised by absolute trustworthiness.
Physical contact: Caution must always be exercised when initiating or receiving
physical contact including gestures of comfort that may be unwanted or
Pastoral conversations: Students must be careful in personal conversations when
discussing matters of sexual intimacy.
All inappropriate sexual behaviour is forbidden. “Inappropriate” means sexual
contact or behaviour that intentionally generates sexual desire outside of faithfulness
in a heterosexual marriage. It is therefore in contravention of and not fitting with the
professed Christian values described under 5.3 Sexual Behaviour, and is unacceptable.
It includes (but is not limited to) conduct in breach of this Code. Improper conduct will
result in disciplinary action.
Students must avoid involvement in sexual harassment, as defined in applicable equal
opportunity or anti-discrimination legislation.
Sexual innuendo or compliments of a sexual nature are always inappropriate.
Students must not view pornographic material or go to places of commercialised sex
such as strip clubs or visit a brothel (Matthew 5:28; 2 Peter 2:14a; Proverbs 5:3-6; 1
Corinthians 6:18-20; Ephesians 5:12). Additionally, they must avoid chat rooms or
internet sites of a sexual nature.
5.4 Financial Matters
Students must set an example and practice integrity in all their financial dealings.
Conflicts of interest: It is important to avoid any potential conflict between personal
finances and pastoral responsibilities. Anything that could lead to a conflict of interest
must be immediately disclosed to students’ pastoral oversight or appropriate manager.
(2 Corinthians 8:21; James 2:1, 2-4).
Students must avoid borrowing money from, or lending money to, a person with whom
there is a pastoral relationship.
5.5 Academic Integrity
Students must personally complete all assignments tasks and declarations as required.
Students who do not comply may be removed from the program, College or any
activities associated with Axx.
Trust is essential in personal ministry. Those involved in personal care must note that
both formal interviews and casual conversations in a ministry context are personal
encounters where confidences are shared and confidential information received. This
information must not be disclosed, and must be treated with the utmost care.
Exceptions may include where disclosure is required by law (subpoena or abuse
notifications), where there are concerns for the safety of the person or others, or when
the information is in the public domain.
When using examples in sermons or discussions, students must be careful not to use any information that might identify others, without their permission.
Disclosing to a third party any personal or confidential information that has been
disclosed to a student in a ministry context, is always unacceptable. Students must
seek clarification from the person concerned, if they are unsure whether the
information is confidential.
6. The Implementation of the Code
If questions arise with areas of “Caution,” the individual student must contact the
Director of Training and make full disclosure.
With any breach of the Code of Conduct in a “Prohibited” area the student in breach
must notify the Director of Training (or the person fulfilling those duties at that time)
within 7 days (24 hours if civil or criminal action is involved).
Failure to notify in accordance with the paragraph above will itself be a “Prohibited”
breach of the code.
Alleged breaches of the Code will be investigated by the Director of Training or his/her
delegate. Students must co-operate with any such investigations, relating to their own
conduct or the conduct of other students.
If the Director of Training or his/her delegate concludes that a student has breached
the Code or is otherwise guilty of improper conduct, the Director of Training or his/her
delegate may take disciplinary action against the student.
7. Review and Amendment of Code
This Code of Conduct may be reviewed and amended at the discretion of Axx.
Students must comply with the Code of Conduct as amended from time to time.
Policy Owner: CEO
Policy Type: Operational
Approved Date: 03.10.2019
Effective Date: 03.10.2019
Review Date: 04.03.2022
Relevant Legislation: Nil
Related Policies: Nil
Related Procedures: Nil
Related forms, publications, websites: Nil
References & Acknowledgements: Nil