End Times and Current Events
November 19, 2018, 11:38:04 am
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me." John 5:39 (KJB)
 
  Home Help Search Gallery Staff List Login Register  

The 501c3 Thread

Shoutbox
August 08, 2018, 02:38:10 am suzytr says: Hello, any good churches in the Sacto, CA area, also looking in Reno NV, thanks in advance and God Bless you Smiley
January 29, 2018, 01:21:57 am Christian40 says: It will be interesting to see what happens this year Israel being 70 years as a modern nation may 14 2018
October 17, 2017, 01:25:20 am Christian40 says: It is good to type Mark is here again!  Smiley
October 16, 2017, 03:28:18 am Christian40 says: anyone else thinking that time is accelerating now? it seems im doing days in shorter time now is time being affected in some way?
September 24, 2017, 10:45:16 pm Psalm 51:17 says: The specific rule pertaining to the national anthem is found on pages A62-63 of the league rulebook. It states: “The National Anthem must be played prior to every NFL game, and all players must be on the sideline for the National Anthem. “During the National Anthem, players on the field and bench area should stand at attention, face the flag, hold helmets in their left hand, and refrain from talking. The home team should ensure that the American flag is in good condition. It should be pointed out to players and coaches that we continue to be judged by the public in this area of respect for the flag and our country. Failure to be on the field by the start of the National Anthem may result in discipline, such as fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choice(s) for violations of the above, including first offenses.”
September 20, 2017, 04:32:32 am Christian40 says: "The most popular Hepatitis B vaccine is nothing short of a witch’s brew including aluminum, formaldehyde, yeast, amino acids, and soy. Aluminum is a known neurotoxin that destroys cellular metabolism and function. Hundreds of studies link to the ravaging effects of aluminum. The other proteins and formaldehyde serve to activate the immune system and open up the blood-brain barrier. This is NOT a good thing."
http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-08-11-new-fda-approved-hepatitis-b-vaccine-found-to-increase-heart-attack-risk-by-700.html
September 19, 2017, 03:59:21 am Christian40 says: bbc international did a video about there street preaching they are good witnesses
September 14, 2017, 08:06:04 am Psalm 51:17 says: bro Mark Hunter on YT has some good, edifying stuff too.
September 14, 2017, 04:31:26 am Christian40 says: i have thought that i'm reaping from past sins then my life has been impacted in ways from having non believers in my ancestry.
September 11, 2017, 06:59:33 am Psalm 51:17 says: The law of reaping and sowing. It's amazing how God's mercy and longsuffering has hovered over America so long. (ie, the infrastructure is very bad here b/c for many years, they were grossly underspent on. 1st Tim 6:10, the god of materialism has its roots firmly in the West) And remember once upon a time ago when shacking up b/w straight couples drew shock awe?

Exodus 20:5  Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
View Shout History
Pages: 1 ... 5 6 [7] 8   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: The 501c3 Thread  (Read 5072 times)
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #180 on: October 23, 2014, 08:35:10 pm »

Again(as we've all said here) - sodomites invading the land IS judgment(as Romans 1:18-32 clearly says) - it's NOT "judgment comes AFTER they've come".

With that being said - these 501c3 hirelings just go on and on like the energizer bunny for years - they keep saying "judgment WILL come...". Really? Then why are they reading out of some perverted, gender-neutral bible and putting out this CCM nonsense in their Babel buildings?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/14/ron-baity-ebola-gay-marriage_n_5987210.html?ncid=txtlnkusaolp00000592
10/14/14
Ron Baity, Baptist Preacher, Claims God Will Send Something Worse Than Ebola As Punishment For Gay Marriage

A Baptist preacher says the biblical "End Times" are upon us thanks to a federal judge striking down a ban on gay marriage in North Carolina.

According to Ron Baity of the Berean Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, N.C., God is so angry over the decision that He's about to send something even worse than Ebola.

"You think Ebola is bad now, just wait," Baity warned during his sermon on Sunday.

Baity spoke of hearing an official bless a gay marriage, something he claimed was a direct violation of the Bible.

“If you think for one skinny minute, God is going to stand idly by and allow this to go forward without repercussions, you better back up and rethink this situation,” Baity said in remarks transcribed by Raw Story. “I want you to understand, that is raw, pure blasphemy.”

Baity also drew comparisons between gay marriage and Sodom and Gomorrah, the cities destroyed by God in biblical stories.

"My friend, we are meriting, we are bringing the judgement of God on this nation as sure as Sodom and Gomorrah was destroyed, don’t be surprised at the plagues. Don’t be surprised at the judgement of God," Baity said. “You think Ebola is bad now, just wait. If it’s not that, it’s going to be something else. My friends, I want you to understand, you can’t thumb your nose at God, and God turn his head away without God getting your attention.”

At times during the nearly hour-long sermon, members of his congregation can be heard shouting "Amen!" in the background.

Full audio of the sermon is available here.

Baity previously made headlines when he called for the prosecution of gays.

"For 300 years, we had laws that would prosecute that lifestyle," Baity was quoted as saying in 2012. "We've gone down the wrong path. We've become so dumb that we have accepted a lie for the truth, and we've ... discarded the truth on the shoals of shipwreck!"

He's also on record comparing gay people to maggots, according to The Daily Beast.

The website reports that in 2012, Baity was given something called the "Watchmen Award," ostensibly a pro-family honor, by the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian organization.

Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #181 on: November 13, 2014, 07:32:45 pm »

http://christiannews.net/2014/11/13/appeals-court-overturns-ruling-striking-down-tax-free-clergy-housing-allowances/
11/13/14
Appeals Court Overturns Ruling Striking Down Tax-Free Clergy Housing Allowances

MADISON, Wisc. – An appeals court has overturned a lower court ruling that struck down a law granting U.S. pastors tax-free housing allowances.

As previously reported, the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) had filed suit in August 2012, challenging the 1954 “parish exemption” granted by Congress.

“In the case of a minister of the gospel, gross income does not include (1) the rental value of a home furnished to him as part of his compensation; or (2) the rental allowance paid to him as part of his compensation, to the extent used by him to rent or provide a home and to the extent such allowance does not exceed the fair rental value of the home, including furnishings and appurtenances such as a garage, plus the cost of utilities,” the pertinent statute states.

U.S. Representative Peter Mack, who introduced the legislation, was said to have introduced the law in order to reward ministers for working to fight against wickedness in the land.

“Certainly, in these times when we are being threatened by a godless and anti-religious world movement we should correct this discrimination against certain ministers of the gospel who are carrying on such a courageous fight against this foe,” he stated. “Certainly this is not too much to do for these people who are caring for our spiritual welfare.”

**Really? Have you been in any of these Babel buildings nowdays? You know, how they put out this contemporary/rock "worship" music, and preach out of bibles that promote fornication and sodomy?

FFRF had sued U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew and acting IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel, asserting that the tax exemption violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment and the equal protection provision of the Fourteenth Amendment. The organization claimed that it was unfair for clergy to receive the tax break while others, such as the founders of FFRF, must pay taxes on their housing allowance.

**Hate to say it, but this anti-Christian organization is right - the 1st ammendment in the US Constitution says to that Congress shall make no law respecting one religion over another. And FYI - they ended up putting out this law b/c Rick Warren made a big fuss over not being able to deduct more than he wanted on his tax returns.

t is pure discrimination to deny atheist leaders the housing allowance privileges given to clergy as a reward for fighting ‘godless foe,’” co-founder Annie Laurie Gaylor stated.

**Actually, not quite correct - they're not contending for the faith anymore, nor feeding their sheep.

Last November, U.S. District Court Judge Barbara Crabb, appointed by Jimmy Carter, agreed with FFRF, declaring section 2 of the tax code unconstitutional.

“Because a primary function of a ‘minister of the gospel’ is to disseminate a religious message, a tax exemption provided only to ministers results in preferential treatment for religious messages over secular ones,” she wrote.

But on Thursday, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago reversed Crabb’s ruling, opining that FFRF has no standing in the matter and thus throwing out the legal challenge. FFRF suffered no personal injury, the court said, because it has never sought to obtain the exemption and therefore cannot show that it had been denied under the law.

“The plaintiffs were never denied the parsonage exemption because they never asked for it, ” the three-judge panel stated. “Without a request, there can be no denial. And absent any personal denial of a benefit, the plaintiff s’ claim amounts to nothing more than a generalized grievance about §107(2)’s unconstitutionality, which does not support standing.”

Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), the Christian legal organization that filed a friend of the court brief on behalf of approximately 600 churches nationwide, applauded the decision.

“The atheists who filed this suit may have an axe to grind against religion, but as the 7th Circuit found, that doesn’t give them sufficient standing to challenge a tax benefit for which it has never applied and that has been provided to pastors for decades,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley. “The allowance many churches provide to pastors is church money, not government money. It is constitutional and should continue to be respected and protected.”

As of press time, FFRF had yet to issue a statement about the matter.
Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #182 on: November 18, 2014, 01:37:49 pm »

IRS Agents Can Pose as Clergy to Spy on Churches

A New York Times front-page story shared that IRS rules allow that "an undercover employee or cooperating private individual may pose as an attorney, physician, clergyman or member of the news media."

The New York Times also goes on to state that the IRS allows much more "latitude" than other federal agencies in gathering information.

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, states:

"It is troubling and an outrage that members of the IRS can pose as members of the clergy to gather information for the government. The First Amendment and the foundational principles of religious freedom that have long been embraced and honored by our nation are being trampled by these rules.

"The church and faith community are now being faced with the reality that the government is sending IRS agents pretending to be members of the clergy into Christian meetings, gatherings and services for the distinct purpose of the government "spying" on them. Also, American citizens must confront the fact that when they share their concerns with a member of the clergy, they may be talking to an IRS agent.

"This is clearly a trampling of the First Amendment which affords to every American the right to freely worship according the the dictates of their conscience without government interference and harassment. It is the role of the government to protect religious freedom and faith not use it as tool to try and gather information or spy on their citizens.

"What  makes this policy even more disturbing is the fact that the IRS is implementing it. This is the same organization that is facing blistering criticism and Congressional hearings for attacking the political beliefs and views of citizens and groups that the government does not agree with. Simply stated, this policy by the IRS must be dropped immediately."

Here is a link to The New York Times story.
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/16/us/more-federal-agencies-are-using-undercover-operations.html?module=Search&mabReward=relbias%3Aw%2C%7B%222%22%3A%22RI%3A14%22%7D&_r=0

http://www.charismanews.com/us/46175-irs-agents-can-pose-as-clergy-to-spy-on-churches

Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #183 on: December 09, 2014, 11:34:37 am »

Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #184 on: December 11, 2014, 03:41:04 pm »

FEMA Pastor Speaks Out and Reveals a Dirty Little Secret About What They’ll Be Called to Do by the Government When Asked…Warning You May Not Like What You’re About To Hear…

By now most of you are aware of the infamous group formed by FEMA and DHS who recruited 28,000 pastors to be part of the Clergy Response Team—a team of pastors who duty it will be in the event of any beckon call from the Government to round up citizens—be it for a catastrophe, an outbreak, or whatever them deem necessary. These pastors have sold not only their congregations out but also left God at the doorstep by doing so.

Recently Pastor Walt Mansfield, one of the first to be recruited by FEMA, boldly shares with Dave Hodges The Common Sense Show, all the devious workings the government is attempting to do through this organization. Everything from rounding up dissidents, to promoting servitude to the government, to forcing people into camps is involved.

In the video below I dive through all this and more but be aware you may not like what you’re about to hear…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?list=UUBDrbqudUtPUQxAK_K2JaNQ&v=UpEadl-MaGk&feature=player_embedded

http://beforeitsnews.com/police-state/2014/12/fema-pastor-speaks-out-and-reveals-a-dirty-little-secret-about-what-theyll-be-called-to-do-by-the-government-when-asked-warning-you-may-not-like-what-youre-about-to-hear-466.html
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #185 on: December 12, 2014, 06:10:11 pm »

The pastor at my last church in Louisiana seemed to be in alot of secrecy - he said he went to Washington, DC every week to see some of the local area politicians like Bobby Jindal(and he's also friends with David Vitter). Jindal was Congressman back then(he's governor now). He claimed he did so b/c Jindal's a man of faith(on the contrary, Jindal's a ROMAN CATHOLIC).

Pt being that I didn't know it back then, but it's pretty obvious he's been with the Clergy Response Team all along(ie-a group of clergy acted as such when Katrina happened). He's also part of some Interfaith group at the New Orleans RCC Archdiocese(something he never told his church about).

Throughout my lifetime - all of these 501c3 pastors just operated in so much secrecy - it was hard to get access to them(except for shaking your hand with them on the way out the Sunday morning service door). When you did, they really didn't answer any of your questions. They were always pre-occupying themselves with others. The list goes on.
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #186 on: December 12, 2014, 10:58:44 pm »

http://www.thecommonsenseshow.com/2014/12/10/a-clergy-response-team-insider-reveals-the-duties-of-a-pastor-inside-of-a-fema-camp/
12/10/14
A Clergy Response Team Insider Reveals the Duties of a Pastor Inside of a FEMA Camp

Many people in the independent media have reported that an estimated 28,000 pastors were recruited by FEMA/DHS, as part of the Clergy Response Team, and that their initial and primary training was to tell their flock to obey the DHS version of Romans 13. Romans 13, in the King James version of the Bible, begins:

“Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.” Romans 13:1
 
Many of us have been quick to point that this bastardization of the Romans 13 is designed to force compliance to government edicts who might not otherwise comply.

Certainly all governments are not established by God. Were the governments of Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, all ordained by God? What about George the III? Most people in the independent media think that this is the extent of the threat posed by the existence of the Clergy Response Teams.

Romans 13 Is Just the Tip of the Iceberg

I have discovered that the Clergy Response Teams are taking on much more nefarious duties and it can be accurately stated that the pastors associated with the DHS/FEMA/Clergy Response Teams are going to be doing a whole lot more than encouraging their flock to obey the government.

On December 9, 2014, I conducted a telephonic interview with Pastor Walt Mansfield. Pastor Mansfield was among the first of the pastors recruited to become a part of the Clergy Response Team. The revelations he conveyed to me about this program had pastors doing a whole lot more than preaching Romans 13. But before going to the disturbing contents of the interview, let’s take a look at relevant legislation which helps to legitimize Pastor Mansfield’s outrageous claims.

Background Legislation

On December 31, 2011, President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) into law which in addition to allocating $662 billion to the Pentagon also contains a measure which allows U.S. citizens to be taken into custody and held indefinitely without ever being charged with a crime.

Not only can any citizen deemed a threat to “national security interests of the United States,” be held forever without receiving a trial, but the military will be the ones arresting those citizens.

NDAA Section 1022, subsection c allows “(1) Detention under the law of war without trial until the end of the hostilities authorized by the Authorization for Use of Military Force.”

The National Emergency Centers Act or HR 645 mandates the establishment of “national emergency centers” to be located on military installations for the purpose of to providing “temporary housing, medical, and humanitarian assistance to individuals and families dislocated due to an emergency or major disaster,” according to the bill.

The legislation also states that the camps will be used to “provide centralized locations to improve the coordination of preparedness, response, and recovery efforts of government, private, and not-for-profit entities and faith-based organizations”.

The bill also provides that the camps can be used to “meet other appropriate needs”, as determined by the Secretary of Homeland Security. This a carte blanche mandate that many fear could mean the forced detention of American citizens in the event of widespread rioting following a national emergency or a total economic collapse.

Pastor Mansfield’s “Insider” Revelations

Pastor Mansfield was recruited to become a member of the Clergy Response Team which would operate under the control of NOVAD and DHS. Mansfield’s revelations about his experiences are stunning and concerning at the same time.

Pastor Mansfield attended several briefings and he could barely believe his ears. He learned of the government’s plan to enact martial law as well as to implement forced population relocations. Mansfield emphasized that when martial law is enacted, the enforcement would be immediate. In other words, family members will be separated from each other and part of the training that the clergy received was how to comfort separated family members.

Pastor Mansfield emphasized that the FEMA/DHS drills were predicated on bioterrorism. The pastors were trained to go to homes were people refused to be relocated by the authorities and  their immediate job was to convince the reluctant to willingly go to the relocation camps. Ostensibly, this was to be done in lieu of sending in the SWAT teams.

I asked Mansfield if FEMA camps were real and he stated that much of the clergy training focused around this scenario of pastors operating within the forced relocation centers. The main goal of a pastor assigned to a FEMA was to bring order and encourage compliance with DHS requests, hence, the emphasis on Romans 13.

The pastors were forced to sign non-disclosure. Interesting, the pastors were told not to quote Scripture. The DHS document which was prepared for the pastors clearly stated that Scripture had been used to “oppress” people in the past and the presenters strongly discouraged the its use. Please see the following excerpt from one of the DHS training manuals:

Quote
Healing Scripture and Prayer In the Pastoral Crisis Intervention

“During a time of crisis people do go through a  “crisis of faith.”

Sometime quick mention of God and scripture may not be helpful. As we all know the Scripture has been used to oppress, dominate and at the same time used for healing and reconciliation- renewing of relationship with God and people. If the pastor senses it is appropriate to use the scripture and prayer, it must carefully be done for healing of victims not to uphold pastoral authority.” (Page 14)
 

In other words, all legitimate pastoral authority was abrogated by the pastors who participated in the roundup of American citizens.
 
Also on page 14 of the same training document, pastors were admonished to avoid “Unhealthy God talk….” Specifically pastors are ordered to avoid using references to God when helping people cope with the loss of a loved one:

        “4. God must have needed him/her more than you.”
        “5. God never gives more than we can handle.“
 
Pastor Mansfield also revealed that pastors will be issued badges under the Clergy Response Team program. Any pastor not displaying the badge, indicating that they have been trained under these guidelines, will not be permitted into the established and designated “DHS safety zones”. This reminds me of the banishment of religious figures from Plymouth Colony who, in good conscience, refused to go along with some of the extremism of that day. Along these lines, the Clergy Response Team is also a “Kool-Aid drinking program”. Pastors are absolutely forbidden to publicly to speak about any aspect of the program. If you were to ask your pastor if they are a FEMA trained pastor, they will not likely tell you.

Disturbingly, Pastor Mansfield reiterated several times that the number one job of these pastors is to calm down people and encourage their compliance within the people’s new surroundings.

Pastor Mansfield also stated that pastors will be utilized as informants. This violates the legal privilege of confidentiality between pastor and church-goer, that is currently recognized by law. All church-goers can no longer trust the sanctity of personal confessions and revelations made to pastors, priests or rabbis’. This one illegal act by DHS completely undermines the Christian Church in America!

Summary

What pastor could, in good conscience, participate in this heinous program? Mansfield told me that there are an estimated 28,000 FEMA trained pastors. The pastors in America are being coerced to participate because when an emergency is declared, no pastor, who does not have the “FEMA-trained government badge” will be allowed to be in a declared “emergency” area. Pastor Mansfield felt strongly this was the government’s way of removing Jesus from America’s landscape and set the stage for the ushering in of a new-age religion.

It is mindboggling to fathom how so many reporters and media types deny the existence of FEMA camps under these circumstances. It is also disturbing that any pastor would agree to participate in a program in which Jesus and the Bible end up on the cutting room floor.

Since interviewing Pastor Mansfield, I have been contemplating the potential wisdom of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn in which made the following quote:

Solzhenitsyn once said that
“We should have resisted the KGB at the front door. If the KGB thought that they might not go home that night, the Russian people might have had a different fate”.
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #187 on: December 21, 2014, 11:24:04 pm »

Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #188 on: December 21, 2014, 11:30:16 pm »

FYI, Martin Luther SUPPORTED the whole church/state unholy marriage!

http://www.mennosimons.net/horsch01.html

Excerpt:

Both Luther and Zwingli, the leading state-church reformers, advised the priests in the states whose rulers favored their cause to continue in their office and say Mass "in appearance" until the governments of these states would decide to introduce the Reformation, establish the new creed and raise the new church to the position of the state-church. This principle has found classical expression in Luther's tract A Faithful Admonition published in January, 1522, in which the reformer advances the opinion that changes in worship and practice must not be made without the consent of the heads of the state. The secular authorities, he says, should take this matter into their hands. "every prince in his own land," and nothing in the way of actual reformation of the church should be done without the initiative of the authorities or the command of the government. Luther says further:

"Therefore, look upon the government, as long as they do not undertake anything and do not give a command, you should keep quiet with hand, mouth and heart and should not concern yourself about it. If you can persuade the government to proceed and give a command, you may do so. If the government be not willing, neither should you be. But if you proceed, you are in the wrong and are far worse than the other party [the Romanists]." (6)
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #189 on: February 15, 2015, 05:52:01 pm »

http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/hhs-publishes-sample-church-bulletin-insert-promote-obamacare_852728.html
HHS Pushes Church Talking Points, Bulletins to Promote Obamacare
2/15/15

In an effort to sign up as many consumers as possible for insurance under the Affordable Care Act (or Obamacare), the Obama administration has gone to extraordinary lengths to partner with churches and other faith-based groups, even publishing sample church bulletin inserts, flyers, and scripts for announcements, as well as "talking points." These materials are part of the "Second Sunday & Faith Weekend of Action Toolkit," which is available on the website of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

From the beginning, HHS has sought to develop partnerships with faith-based organizations to promote the Obamacare. This "toolkit" has been available since 2013. However, the details of these partnerships have largely escaped the attention of the national media. The Second Sunday & Faith Weekend of Action program encourages churches to use the second Sunday of each month during open enrollment to hold informational meetings and sign-up events. The sample bulletin insert appears as follows:



The suggested announcement includes insertion points for the name of the church promoting the event:



The materials also include two full pages of "talking points," which end with an admonition to churches that "[y]ou are trusted messengers in this community. We hope you share this information with those around you so they can be connected with the care they need."

Non-profits such as Community Health Connectors have also brought togeather churches and faith-based organizations with government officials for information regarding the ACA, recently even hosting an "off the record" conference call with First Lady Michelle Obama "to discuss how the Affordable Care Act is impacting the lives of your congregation members."

HHS also offers to make officials from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) available to speak at church events. The CMS "2nd Sunday HIM [Health Insurance Marketplace] Enrollment for Faith and Community Event" form asks for contact information, desired topics and dates, and an audience profile, including if any "other CMS, HHS, Congressional Members or any other VIP officials expected to attend."

In at least one case, a marketplace even invoked scripture as part of the enrollment push. In March 2014, D.C. HealthLink, the insurance marketplace for the nation's capital assigned a theme to their Weekend of Action, "The Body is a Temple and it Must Be Insured," drawing on I Corinthians 6:19, which says that "your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit."



According to a recent blog post on the HHS website, more than 5,500 faith leaders have "promoted health insurance enrollment within their communities through efforts like the Second Sunday program." The deadline for open enrollment for 2015 coverage is Sunday, February 15.
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #190 on: February 17, 2015, 01:52:53 pm »

http://www.ocregister.com/articles/immigration-651234-help-church.html
Churches ask: What can we do to help undocumented immigrants?
Feb. 13, 2015 Updated 8:45 p.m.

The presentations at two Orange County church meetings were similar. The crowds were not.

One was predominantly Anglo. The other was Latino.

Both focused on President Obama’s upcoming immigration plan and what church members could do to help 100,000 eligible undocumented immigrants across the county apply for deportation relief.

The first application opening is days away. Local churches and other organizations are busily working to organize forums and training sessions. They’re looking for volunteers. They aim to help eligible immigrants apply for temporary reprieves from deportation that come with work permits.

Such sessions are happening nationwide.

A federal judge in Texas, meanwhile, is expected to deliver a ruling in a case that pits about half of the nation against the president. More than two dozen states sued Obama, saying he unilaterally –and unlawfully–rewrote immigration law.

A calling or 'unholy alliance'?

“I’m here to help myself and to help others,” said Nelva Resendiz, a Costa Mesa mother of three who hopes to qualify for the president’s three-year deferment from deportation plan for parents of U.S.-born children.

Resendiz was one of some 35 residents who attended an informational forum and training at the Crossing Church in Costa Mesa last Tuesday night.

A couple of days earlier, more than 40 church members from the Tapestry Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Mission Viejo and Irvine United Congregational Church gathered for lunch to learn more about the president’s plan at the Irvine church.

“Our prayers were answered. Now we have to respond,” Minerva Gomez, of the Orange County Congregation Community Organizations, told the assembled church members.

Rev. Paul Tellstrom, the pastor for the progressive Christian congregation in Irvine, said immigration issues resonate with his congregation.

“But it’s not the slam dunk of Prop. 8,” he said, referring to a California ballot against gay marriages that his church members opposed.

His congregation will spend the next year learning about immigration issues and looking into different points of view, said Tellstrom, who referred to the country’s immigration system as broken and riddled with injustices.

Don Bjorklund, a retired attorney in Mission Viejo, left the luncheon saying he wants to volunteer.

“Something has to be done,” Bjorklund said. “I applaud president Obama for taking the executive actions that he did and I want do do what I can to help.”

Californians who oppose the president’s actions say support and money would be best spent on American citizens. Next Thursday, they plan two rallies in Orange County.

“It is an unholy alliance that church groups, the government and illegals have joined together, at the expense of the U.S. taxpayer,” said Robin Hvidston, of the Claremont-based We the People Rising, which opposes illegal immigration.

“It is inconceivable that the Obama administration neglects the American people as he funds, protects and encourages illegal immigration, at this time of high unemployment and U.S. poverty,” Hvidston said in an e-mail.

Executive Action

On Nov. 20, President Obama announced a series of executive actions. They include expanding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, known as DACA: a program for immigrants who entered the country before the age of 16 and meet other criteria. The government will begin accepting applications for the expanded program Wednesday.

The program garnering the most attention is one that will help an estimated four million people get another version of DACA. The new program for immigrant parents is called DAPA, or Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents. That one will begin taking applications in May.

But the programs have hit roadblocks.

The U.S. House of Representatives approved a spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security that not only blocks the expanded DACA but would get rid of the three-year program altogether.

And a ruling is expected any day from a federal district court judge on the lawsuit by 26 states. Those governors argue that the new relief programs will cause irreparable harm to their states, leading to increased costs.

“This lawsuit is not about immigration. It is about the rule of law, presidential power, and the structural limits of the U.S. Constitution,” reads the lawsuit.

California is on the other side, joining 11 other states and D.C in filing a court brief backing the president.

Legal experts have said they expect Judge Andrew Hanen to rule against the administration, citing his comments on an earlier case involving unaccompanied minors arriving at the border.

“We’re all waiting to see what the judge actually says and does,” said Crystal Williams, spokeswoman for the American Immigration Lawyers Assn.

Most observers expect the case will likely be decided through the appellate process and reach the U.S. Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, it’s unclear what will happen to the programs during that process. They may be frozen. They may be able to proceed in whole or in part. They may be frozen only for the people in the court’s immediate jurisdiction. There may be other permutations, Williams said.

Much will depend on the actual language and scope of any order.

What’s next?

Supporters are pushing through to help implement the plans, despite the obstacles.

A coalition of labor, legal service and faith-based organizations in Orange County have been meeting regularly to develop a plan and see who is doing what.

Catholic Charities of Orange County has identified at least seven parishes to train volunteer leaders, who in turn will train others. They plan to hold workshops to help immigrants living in the country illegally gather documents and fill out paperwork, said Deana Gullo, the director of immigration services program.


By November, Catholic Charities, an authorized provider of immigration services, hopes to help about 8,000 residents, less than 10 percent of the expected eligible population locally.

World Relief, a global non-profit with an office in Garden Grove, also has members who are accredited to provide these services. And they’re looking to train 100 more churches throughout Southern California to become authorized providers too, said Jose Serrano, a spokesman for the local office.

Meanwhile, like other organizations, World Relief is hosting forums to provide information, warn against potential scammers, remind immigrants to research and copy personal documents. Prospective applicants also need to start saving. Supporters estimate the fee will be similar to a current DACA application, $465.

Supporters say the fees will cover expenses. Opponents say it won’t be enough, and taxpayers will end up footing the bill.
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #191 on: February 24, 2015, 08:11:43 pm »

The silver underlying over all of this is that 99% of Idaho "churches" are (likely)501c3s.

Smokescreen, can we say?

http://news.yahoo.com/republicans-propose-declaring-idaho-christian-state-233031805.html
2/24/15
Republicans propose declaring Idaho a 'Christian state'

SALMON, Idaho (Reuters) - Members of a county Republican Party in Idaho are to take up a measure on Tuesday evening that would declare the state a Christian one to bolster what the proposal calls the "Judeo-Christian bedrock of the founding of the United States."

The resolution to be voted on by the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee is non-binding, meaning it does not have the effect of laws or rules.

The proposal seeks that Idaho be "formally and specifically declared a Christian state," guided by a Judeo-Christian faith reflected in the U.S. Declaration of Independence where all authority and power is attributed to God, the resolution reads.

The measure argues that the Christian faith is under "strident attack" in the United States, and cites as evidence the absence of Christian traditions and symbols in public institutions such as schools.

The issue has sparked debate within the Republican stronghold of northern Idaho, once known for harboring leaders of the so-called Christian identity or white supremacist movement such as the late Aryan Nations founder Richard Butler.

Supporters say the measure echoes the Christian principles espoused by early U.S. presidents such as Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, and that it has added significance at a time when Christians are subject to persecution in countries such as Syria where it is not the dominant religion.

"We're a Christian community in a Christian state and the Republican Party is a Christian Party," said Jeff Tyler, a member of the committee and backer of the draft resolution.

"It's important that Christians stand up and be unashamed to say they're Christians."

Other committee members said they opposed the proposal, but that it placed them in a difficult position because if they voted against it they risked being unjustly labeled as anti-Christian.

Bjorn Handeen, a committee member who described himself as a Republican with libertarian leanings, said he is opposed to any document that puts the government in charge of defining Christianity.

He said the resolution was pushed by a small group within the committee that is bent on creating division among its about 70 members.

"Ultimately, I'm not in favor of dividing us by religion; I'm in favor of uniting us by freedom," Handeen said.

If approved, the resolution would be submitted to the state Republican Party for a vote by its members.

Idaho has long been a Republican bastion, with party members holding the majority of state offices.
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #192 on: March 16, 2015, 10:26:27 am »

http://mashable.com/2015/03/16/billy-graham-deploys-clergy-to-ferguson/
3/16/15
Prayer and protest: Ferguson attracts Billy Graham's rapid response team

FERGUSON, Missouri — The city of Ferguson once more came back into the news.

Last week, a police shooting left two officers injured and, soon after, protesters and journalists began to gather in front of the city's police department as they had before.

But this time demonstrators and reporters were joined by a third group on South Florissant Road: Evangelical Christians.

On Saturday night, a half a dozen friendly, clean-cut men and women could be seen milling around in the police station parking lot, dressed in matching blue button up shirts, spelling out: Billy Graham Rapid Response.

" People have asked if we could come and help the community heal People have asked if we could come and help the community heal," said Jeff Naber, who handles ministry relations for the team.

When a police officer shot and killed Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, here in August, Ferguson erupted in protests. The shooting also sparked a nationwide debate about rights, race and police brutality. The announcement by authorities in November that the police officer, Darren Wilson, wouldn't be charged in the shooting death of Brown, only further fueled demonstrations across the country.

Naber, who has visited Ferguson several times in the past few months, says that his group has simply come to offer a helping hand while delivering a message of "Jesus' love."

The evangelical group was originally founded by Billy Graham, who in the 1950s became one of the leading religious figures in America. (He preached racial equality and became friends with Martin Luther King Jr., at one point posting bail for King when King was arrested.)

However, over the weekend, it was clear that not everyone in Ferguson was happy to see the evangelical "mobile command unit" roll up to the protests.

“It's disrespectful," said one young Ferguson resident named Loki. "They call it rapid response — what have they responded to?” said Loki, who spoke on condition that only his FIRST NAME be used. "They stand in that van...they watch TV and pass out coffee,” said Loki."It's not helping the community at all." Besides, he said, for those seeking God, there are already several churches in the community.


The truck had been parked for several weeks in Ferguson following the decision not to indict Wilson in November, and residents came into the truck to speak with the volunteers and to pray with them, said Naber. It had been located in the section of town where Brown was killed, but was brought back to the community after this week's police shooting. Though on this Saturday night, the rapid response truck remained largely empty save for the evangelical volunteers.

Still, many Ferguson residents invoke faith when talking about the path ahead. And conversations with residents inevitably veer toward religion. In the Canfield apartment complex, where Brown lived before he was killed, neighbors often reference God and healing when discussing the future of the city.

Along South Florissant Road, a place that has seen its share of fear and uncertainty since August, brightly colored messages of prayer and hope has been tacked to the boarded-up windows.

"People are confused, they are tired, they don't know whats going on and they just wanted to have someone to talk to, someone to pray with," said Rev. Jose Aguayo of the Church of Divine Grace in St. Louis who volunteers with the evangelical group.

Bishop Derrick Robinson, one of the de facto leaders of the protest actions, and a member of the clergy, himself believes that the group needs to make connections with some of the stakeholders in the activist movement that has become a visible staple in the community.

"I think they should partner with some of the local leaders here, and they are definitely doing a poor job of that," said Robinson, who was leading the protesters in rousing chants through a megaphone pointed at the police department on this particular Saturday night. "We have to make sure that the relationships are built to be one."

Loki also believes the group is out of touch with the needs and concerns of the protesters.

“If the police are killing us, we are being tear-gassed, people are being hog-tied and beat up by the police, how is a BIBLE going to help us in that situation?” he asked. "What are we going to say? 'No I’m a Christian — don’t shoot me?’"
Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #193 on: April 10, 2015, 02:40:02 pm »

Christians Sue IRS for Covert Deal Against Churches

Alliance Defending Freedom filed a federal lawsuit Thursday against the Internal Revenue Service for failing to produce records on its secret deal with an activist group to investigate churches. Federal law requires the tax agency to produce the records that ADF requested under the Freedom of Information Act in July 2014, but the IRS missed its legally required deadline months ago and has continued to stonewall the request.

Judicial Watch attorneys are representing ADF in the lawsuit over the FOIA request, which asked that the IRS produce documents related to a legal settlement in which the agency apparently adopted new protocols and procedures for church investigations. ADF is requesting the same information already provided to Freedom From Religion Foundation, which struck a deal with the IRS to end the lawsuit Freedom From Religion Foundation v. Koskinen.

"Americans deserve to know what the IRS is up to," said ADF Litigation Counsel Christiana Holcomb. "The agency's unwillingness to produce these records only furthers the perception that it makes secret deals with activists that it wishes to hide from the public. The IRS's delays make no sense because we only asked for the same information that it already provided to Freedom From Religion Foundation. The IRS has forced us to file this lawsuit just so we can obtain what the agency is already legally obligated to produce."

"The Obama IRS seems oblivious to the federal court's orders to provide full information," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "With the help of a compromised Justice Department, the IRS has engaged in prolonged stonewalling. The IRS thinks it can toy with a federal court, Congress, and the American people. For over two years, the administration has been hiding information on the IRS's targeting of Obama's political opponents. It is certainly in the public's interest to know what the new IRS guidelines are for investigating a basic First Amendment right."

In July 2014, a Freedom From Religion Foundation press release announced it had reached a settlement with the IRS in its lawsuit against the agency. As the release revealed, "The IRS has now resolved the signature authority issue necessary to initiate church examinations. The IRS also has adopted procedures for reviewing, evaluating and determining whether to initiate church investigations."

The FFRF press release mentioned the ADF-sponsored "Pulpit Freedom" movement as a motivation for its lawsuit, which urged the IRS to enforce what's known as the "Johnson Amendment" against churches. Currently, the Johnson Amendment authorizes the IRS to regulate sermons and requires churches to give up their constitutionally protected freedom of speech in order to retain their tax-exempt status.

"The IRS cannot condition tax-exempt status on the surrender of a constitutionally protected freedom," explained ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley, who heads the Pulpit Freedom effort. "Churches don't have to give up their freedom of speech to remain tax-exempt any more than they have to give up their protection against illegal search and seizure. Nonetheless, behind closed doors, the IRS appears to be sharpening its procedures for monitoring sermons and performing additional audits. It should stop playing games with the American people, who can only assume by this continual and illegitimate secrecy that the agency has something to hide."

The lawsuit Alliance Defending Freedom v. Internal Revenue Service was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Several members of Congress, at least one state attorney general, and a number of concerned organizations have also asked the IRS to come clean on its settlement with FFRF.

http://www.charismanews.com/us/49151-christians-sue-irs-for-covert-deal-against-churches
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #194 on: April 22, 2015, 08:16:36 am »

The IRS Assures an Atheist Group It Will Monitor Churches

It was bad enough, as I wrote here last August, that the Internal Revenue Service appeared to reach an agreement to monitor the pulpits of ill-favored churches. What’s worse is that the IRS, directly counter to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requirements, steadfastly has refused to make public key documents pertaining to that decision.

So the IRS, acting with the whole power of government behind it, seems to be saying it can monitor and presumably punish churches for the content of their sermons, but the churches can’t know exactly if, how, and why they are being monitored.

To fight this combined assault on religious liberty and on government transparency, conservative legal stalwarts Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) and Judicial Watch together filed suit April 9 to force release of the IRS documents. ADF asserts that the IRS already has shared the documents with the atheist Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF). Once again, the IRS bends over backwards on behalf of leftists while harassing and ignoring the rights, on multiple levels, of conservative groups or faith communities.

And if the IRS continues to flout FOIA, we ought to treat its obstinacy as a major scandal. Then again, the IRS’s connivance with FFRF is itself a scandalous and deliberate trampling of our founding freedom of religious exercise and expression, guaranteed by the First Amendment.

The controversy arose when FFRF sued the IRS to force it to monitor churches (the IRS apparently monitored at least 99 churches) for alleged lack of compliance with rules against express electioneering by nonprofit organizations. As executive agencies under Barack Obama so often have done, the IRS reached a friendly settlement to dismiss the suit. FFRF was so pleased with the settlement that it claimed, in a headline: “Anti-church electioneering victory is final.” FFRF described how it achieved its “major victory”:

FFRF agreed to voluntarily dismiss its closely watched federal lawsuit against the IRS after being given evidence that the IRS has authorized procedures and “signature authority” to resume initiating church tax investigations and examinations.

The ADF, on behalf of threatened churches, merely demanded through FOIA that the IRS share that same “evidence” with it, including details about the new “procedures.” Pretty basic stuff. Not only does the public in general have the right to know the basis for and substance of a federal agency’s procedures, but the parties directly affected (or targeted) by those procedures, as per a legal settlement, are especially entitled to that information. That’s the law. It’s also Common Sense 101.

In an August 28, 2014, letter to ADF attorney Christiana Holcomb, IRS “tax law specialist” Bonnie Mullins acknowledged that the ordinary deadline for compliance with ADF’s FOIA demand was a day earlier, on August 27, and that she had exercised supposed authority to extend that deadline by ten business days, to September 11, “after which you can file suit.” But even at the start of that extension, Mullins wrote that she did not expect to be able “to locate and consider release of the requested records by Sept. 11, 2014, [so] we have extended the response date to Sept. 29, 2014 when we believe we can provide a final response.

” But no response came in September. Or October. Or November. The IRS instead continued to stonewall. On January 29, a new “tax law specialist,” Corinna Smith, wrote to Holcomb to say that while she (Smith) had on November 26 “asked for more time to obtain the records you requested,” she now “need[ed] additional time to March 31, 2015.” Smith concluded: “I will contact you by March 31, 2015 if I am still unable to complete your request.

” Holcomb told me there are two problems with that. First, ADF never received any November request for “more time” (nor was it warranted by law, and neither was there an explanation why or when Smith had taken the case from Mullins). Second, March 31 came and went without the promised further contact from Smith, or Mullins, or anybody else from the IRS. Thus, even though the IRS originally acknowledged that the ordinary statute of limitations for complying with FOIA was August 27, 2014, and that the legally allowed extension ran out on September 11, 2014, the agency now has allowed more than seven months to pass beyond the legal deadline — without justification, indeed without any explanation other than a mere statement that it needed more time.

And the IRS now has violated even the latest deadline it set for itself, after its first illegal extension, without even bothering to give further notice that it is doing so.

“They have stonewalled month after month after month,” Holcomb said.

This is the same government confiscation-machine–cum–​star-chamber that will and does impose severe fines on ordinary Americans for missing a single tax-filing deadline and that will garnish the wages (effectively at the point of a gun) of anybody who won’t pay those fines. If the IRS’s own standards were applied to “tax law specialist” Mullins, Smith, or any other personnel involved in the suit with FFRF or the decision to “authorize procedures” for monitoring churches, it is conceivable that those individuals might now be subject to criminal prosecution.

Comparing the current impasse to the concurrent but unrelated scandal involving the IRS’s targeting and abusive treatment of conservative groups involved in the public-policy process, Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton said this in a press release:

For two years, the administration has been hiding information on the IRS’s targeting of Obama’s political opponents. It is certainly in the public’s interest to know what the new IRS guidelines are for investigating a basic First Amendment right.

Completely apart from the administrative law-breaking, it is that First Amendment right that remains the nub of the underlying case. The public has been bombarded in recent weeks with stories of battles about the limits of private expressions of faith in the business world. What the IRS apparently is doing, at the atheist group’s request, attacks faith at an even more fundamental level than that: inside the churches’ own doors, at their very pulpits.

As Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1808, “I consider the government of the U.S. as interdicted by the Constitution from intermeddling with religious institutions, their doctrines, disciplines, or exercises.

” Surely, if a government agency is monitoring religious institutions in a way that could lead to such intermeddling, the public deserves an explanation of how, why, when, and where such monitoring is taking place. But this is Obama’s IRS. It seems to think it answers to nobody. The courts must disabuse it of that virtually criminal notion, with every power at the courts’ disposal.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/417153/irs-assures-atheist-group-it-will-monitor-churches-quin-hillyer
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #195 on: April 28, 2015, 06:32:26 am »

EPA Grant to Study How Churches Can Preach Climate Change

The Environmental Protection Agency is funding an $84,000 grant to study churches and faith-based groups that encourage members to fight climate change, The Washington Free Beacon reports.

The public money is backing a graduate fellowship at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor that is looking at "sustainability initiatives" at 17 faith-based institutions in order to develop workshops for religious leaders to teach their followers to work to combat climate change.

"Climate change — which affects traditional faith-based efforts to improve human health, mitigate poverty and redress social inequity — is inspiring religious organizations to advocate for clean air and water, restore ecosystems, and conserve resources," the grant for the project reads.

The project began last fall and is scheduled to continue through September 2016.

The project was initiated because "no systematic studies examine why particular activities arise in specific faith communities, what factors contribute to the durability and efficacy of some faith-based sustainability initiatives, or what outcomes emerge from those initiatives," the grant reads.

"Preliminary analysis suggests that successful initiatives follow similar processes of organizational innovation that integrate sustainability into faith-community social norms, thereby creating expectations for collective and individual behavior," it continues.

The funding supports one doctoral candidate at the University of Michigan, EPA Deputy Press Secretary Laura Allen told the Free Beacon. "The student’s research is intended to be a resource for faith-based organizations to determine the best actions to take to combat harmful impacts from climate change," she said.

If any workshops occur, they would be developed by the student receiving the fellowship, not EPA, Allen said.

Climate change is a subject of debate within churches much as it is in society in general. Faith-based groups tend to fall along conservative and liberal ideological lines, though some otherwise conservative evangelicals also have supported climate change initiatives.

Pope Francis is expected to release an encyclical this summer on the issue. He previously has stated "I don't know if it is all [man's fault] but the majority is, for the most part, it is man who continuously slaps down nature."

Read Latest Breaking News from Newsmax.com http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/epa-grant-churches-preach/2015/04/27/id/641113/#ixzz3YbQkoDOZ
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #196 on: May 01, 2015, 11:03:46 am »

Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #197 on: May 06, 2015, 05:34:46 pm »

http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=2915729383
Who Is Jesus - to YOU
   
The Preeminence of Christ
   
   
2/1/2015 (SUN)  |  Bible: Colossians 1:1-22

Audio: http://www.sermonaudio.com/playpopup.asp?SID=2915729383

The Lord Jesus Christ accepts no competition; He not only DESERVES the place of preeminence in our lives, AND in our churches; but he DEMANDS it as well.

After presenting what God did for us and IN us when He not only saved us, but also delivered us from the power of darkness and TRANSLATED us into the kingdom of His dear Son, this expository sermon through Colossians 1, one of the greatest chapters in the Bible, and one of the most insightful passages into the nature and person of the Lord Jesus Christ, delves into the humanity, the deity, and the exalted position the Lord Jesus has been given as the ruler of this universe. Paul says in Colossians 1:18 that Christ is head over the body, the CHURCH as well, that in ALL THINGS - He should have preeminence. However, it is an undeniable fact of civil law that the incorporated 501c3 churches today have stripped Christ of His preeminence in their churches, and given it to the state instead.

What about YOU? Does Christ have the place of preeminence in YOUR life that he deserves and demands?
Report Spam   Logged
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #198 on: May 07, 2015, 11:16:50 am »

Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #199 on: May 28, 2015, 05:37:06 am »

The Johnson Amendment and the Agenda to Silence Christians

We did not get here overnight. Attacks on religious freedoms and on the speech of Christians in America did not just appear in the last several years. The attempted muzzling of Christian churches and religious groups has gradually increased since a pivotal law was passed by a shrewd politician to intimidate people of faith. The repercussions have been devastating.

The 1954 Johnson Amendment passed by Congress stated that non-profits (read: Christian churches and organizations) could not speak in favor of any political candidate. Was this even constitutional?

This key but forgotten event paved the way for the increased squelching of free speech and because of the confusion and misinformation about the law, many religious leaders have been unnecessarily self-censoring for decades.

The following is an excerpt from the chapter, “The Separation of Christianity and State” in the book, The Cost of Our Silence:

“Texas Democrat, Lyndon B. Johnson, was a powerful politician running for reelection as Senator, but two anti-communist, tax-exempt groups were opposing him and passing out literature during the campaigns. He contacted the IRS and found the group’s activity was legal, so he sought other options to fight them.

Johnson shrewdly appeared on the Senate floor on July 2, 1954, and offered his amendment to a pending, massive, tax code overhaul bill. The bill was supposed to modernize the tax code. Records indicate an absence of committee hearings on the amendment. No legislative analysis took place to examine the effect the bill and the amendment would have, particularly on churches and religious organizations. The amendment was simply created to protect Johnson.

The Johnson Amendment was passed by Congress as an amendment to section 501(c)(3) of the federal tax code… stating entities that are exempt from federal income tax cannot “Participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distributing of statements), any political campaign on behalf of – or in opposition to – any candidate for public office.”

1954 johnson amendment

The Left uses this to bully Christian pastors and groups with threats of losing their nonprofit status should they dare talk about the Bible as it relates to cultural, political, fiscal, and social issues, which all fall under the category of moral issues.

Erik Stanley, author and Senior Legal Counsel of the Alliance Defense Fund, explained the Johnson Amendment was a bill that got inserted into the tax code through back-room deals made by a powerful Senator seeking reelection at any cost. As a result of the bill, freedom of speech and the free exercise of religion have been trampled. Stanley stated:

    We have grown up with a generation of churchgoers that believe it is illegal for their pastor to address candidates and elections in light of Scripture or church doctrine when there is no valid justification for believing that.

Johnson knew how to use the political process to silence his enemies. The new amendment not only protected him from the conservative nonprofit groups opposing him, but many pastors stopped speaking about any issue from the pulpit that might be deemed political either out of ignorance of the new law or out of fear. By this self-censoring, the church has chosen to ignore open immorality in culture and in government while at the same time neglecting to call attention to those political leaders who do strive to live according to Christian morals and values.

One might conclude Lyndon B. Johnson not only silenced America’s churches, his legislation has turned many of them into agents of the state. What about labor unions, liberal churches, and leftist organizations? Why have many of them apparently been allowed to not only endorse and support political candidates, but openly fund their campaigns? This is the hypocrisy of selective law enforcement by the (in)Justice Department and the IRS, a partisan government agency recently exposed in the targeting of conservative groups…

Have we also hesitated to address the severe persecution of our Christian brothers and sisters around the world due to radical Islam? I have to believe we all care about Christian suffering and the fact millions have lost their lives because of their faith in Jesus Christ. What I also want to believe is that religious leaders in America are not afraid to talk about why this is happening.

In an article for American Thinker, Bill Warner wrote about persecution in Islamic nations “caused by Muslim jihadists who are following the Islamic doctrine of jihad against the Christian as found in the Koran, Sira, and Hadith.” Warner points to pastors and church leaders who have become comfortable operating their churches more like 501(c)(3) institutions that have meetings on Sunday. They have a corporate mentality which he believes is one of the reasons for the denial of Christian suffering.

    If you are willing to see the doctrinal roots of the ongoing murder of Christians by Muslims, then you might have to speak about it from the pulpit, and that could be seen as political speech. In spite of the fact that there has never been a 501(c)(3) revoked because of political speech by a minister, the imagined loss silences ministers. Hmmm… if a minister is worried about the IRS revoking his 501(c)(3), then whom is the minster serving? Caesar or Christ?

Are these harsh words any less true of at least a small number of religious leaders in America? If your pastor resembles more of a business person or CEO than a military leader preparing his troops for battle, it may be time to approach him in love and encourage him to address persecution, sin, the culture war, and politics from time to time.

Because many misunderstand why politics were supposedly forbidden in church, some Christians have mistakenly assumed that the process of voting and electing America’s leaders is either unbiblical or unimportant. Only about 25 percent of Christians vote in elections today. Some pastors do talk about their own obligation to impact society by equipping the saints, and do address the controversial issues of today. We need to pray for and rally around Christian leaders such as these.

Though the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment will continue to be wrongly applied to cases involving religion, we can help by raising awareness. We can also elect representatives who revere the Bible they place their hand on when taking their oath of office. Enemies of Christianity and of America have become emboldened, and people of faith need to be reminded we are provided the freedom of religion and its expression under the Constitution.

Our ultimate allegiance and responsibility however, is to the Word of God.

The truth is churches have a tremendous amount of freedom. From the pulpit, actual limitations include: Pastors cannot openly endorse a particular candidate, tell people whom to vote for, or contribute church money to a campaign. A pastor is absolutely free to do so as an individual outside the church. Pastors, churches, and nonprofits can lawfully speak in detail about all biblical issues. They may also quote any Scripture in the Bible, discuss unethical abortion funding and the protection of marriage, and distribute voter guides and information as well as register folks to vote. Churches can invite politicians to come in and speak to their congregations as long as they extend an invitation to both parties.

I do understand the concern some pastors have about mixing religion and government, but we cannot divorce our faith from our politics. If we do, we’d have to leave Jesus at home or outside when we enter the voting booth if that were even possible. Politics affect many areas of our lives, and the Bible has answers and instructions for every single one. Christians must have a voice when it comes to who is elected, what policies get promoted, and which laws get passed.

Someone’s legislation and worldview will surely be enacted and enforced in America – so will it be those who oppose Christianity or those who support it?

Are we willing to remind and inform this generation about who we are and what America once was? Are we willing to speak the truth about Christ and culture no matter how unpopular we may become? The nation has not yet declined to a point of total ungodliness and destruction, and our government needs our prayers and our participation to generate a revival. Concerned Christians must unite again. Every believer should see the need to speak up with a sense of urgency whether you are a parent, a pastor, or a person in the public square.

The Reverend Don Wildmon, founder of the American Family Association, has been instrumental in fighting for the family and Christian values in our country. He wrote the following over ten years ago:

    Today, 4,000 innocent precious lives of unborn babies were snuffed out . . . And 300,000 pulpits are silent . . . The networks make a mockery of Christians, the Christian faith and Christian values with nearly every show they air. Greed, materialism, violence, sexual immorality are standard fare. Program after program, movie after movie contains anti-Christian episodes and plots. News articles condescendingly refer to the “fundamentalists, right-wing Christians.” Those who speak out for the sacredness of life are branded as extremists. And 300,000 pulpits are silent.

    Teenage suicide is the highest it has ever been . . . Christian morality cannot be taught in schools, but atheistic immorality can . . . And 300,000 pulpits are silent. **** has increased 700 percent in the last fifty years, and that takes into consideration the population growth . . . And 300,000 pulpits are silent.

    Rock music fills the airwaves and our children’s minds with music which legitimizes ****, murder, forced sex, sadomasochism, adultery, satanic worship, etc. And 300,000 pulpits are silent. A majority of states now have lotteries [gambling has been legalized, no longer a crime]. And 300,000 pulpits are silent.

Perhaps your pastor or church leader has in fact been speaking out on these and many other problems in our society. Thank him and encourage him! You are blessed to have him and the church in America needs more like him. Our hope is for Christian leaders to do what Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Confessing Church in Germany chose to do; put the Word of God above all things. We must not have any gods besides the one true God. Real faith cannot be silenced by government orders.

If we do nothing and the majority remains silent, the secular progressives win. Then, with God removed from all aspects of American society, they will be the ones to rule, deciding what is right and wrong, true and false, moral and immoral.

As the great Reverend Charles Finney once said,

    “God will bless or curse America depending on the course Christians take in politics; they must vote for honest men and take consistent ground.”

We have been losing ground because Christians have not first been firmly established in their faith, and second; we have not been openly preaching and living the Word of God without compromise. I admit my past failures in this area and have confessed them to the Lord; how about you?

The most important thing is not winning battles for culture or country, but winning eternal battles for the kingdom of God. To win the souls of men, the whole truth of the whole gospel must be proclaimed. True Christianity cannot be confined behind the walls of any church…

http://davidfiorazo.com/2015/05/the-johnson-amendment-and-the-agenda-to-silence-christians/
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #200 on: June 06, 2015, 09:34:38 pm »

Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #201 on: June 17, 2015, 06:43:48 am »

Couple says they were banned from Kernersville church by pastor on social media

Chris and Christina Yarbrough are looking for a new place to worship after being banned from their church through their pastor’s Facebook post.

For more than three years, the couple attended The Bridge Fellowship where Chris served as a deacon.

But that changed Thursday when senior pastor David McGee posted a Facebook status banning the couple along with two other members.

McGee writes:

“We are defellowshipping them. . . this means they cannot come to The Bridge, they are no longer welcomed at The Bridge unless they repent.”

The pastor does not specifically state what the former members did wrong but later writes:

“I will block them because Jesus and the word tell me to, and I don’t want to hear the gossip and lies anymore.”

The Yarbrough’s say the post was the first time they were asked to leave the church and were never spoken to directly about no longer being members there.

“I feel that it was wrong,” Christina said. “I feel more abused and hurt by the church because why didn’t you come to us first.”

Christina says the couple stopped tithing to the church a year ago and instead gave money to other ministries and nonprofits, a decision she claims caused tension between the couple and church leaders.

“The only issue that they had they’d ever come to us about is tithing,” she said.

“If it’s not on your heart to give 10 percent to them, that’s not arguing or being disobedient to them.”

FOX8 reached out to Pastor McGee through two Facebook messages and two voice messages.

McGee has not commented.

http://myfox8.com/2015/06/11/couple-says-they-were-banned-from-church-by-pastor-on-social-media/
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #202 on: June 26, 2015, 04:47:54 pm »

http://hotair.com/archives/2015/06/26/scotus-to-churches-hey-no-worries-you-can-still-advocate-for-traditional-marriage/
6/26/15
SCOTUS to churches: Hey, no worries, you can still “advocate” for traditional marriage

On this slender thread does the promise of religious liberty hang. Justice Anthony Kennedy, in his majority opinion in Obergefell that declares same-sex marriage a constitutional right, barely mentions the means by which most Americans conduct their weddings — houses of worship. Only on page 27 does Kennedy get around to addressing the connection between church and state, and the assurances in this paragraph are less than compelling, to say the least:

Quote
Finally, it must be emphasized that religions, and those who adhere to religious doctrines, may continue to advocate with utmost, sincere conviction that, by divine precepts, same-sex marriage should not be condoned. The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths, and to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered. The same is true of those who oppose same-sex marriage for other reasons. In turn, those who believe allowing same sex marriage is proper or indeed essential, whether as a matter of religious conviction or secular belief, may engage those who disagree with their view in an open and searching debate. The Constitution, however, does not permit the State to bar same-sex couples from marriage on the same terms as accorded to couples of the opposite sex.

Uh …. sure, you can still advocate for traditional marriage. You betcha. Where have we heard these protestations of modesty before?

Note here that Kennedy only mentions that houses of worship and those who attend them can still “advocate” against condoning same-sex marriage (SSM). This ignores the long-standing partnership between churches/synagogues/mosques and the government in officiating legally recognized marriage ceremonies. This decision now makes marriage for those same-sex couples a constitutional right, and that will eventually impact those partners for government who officiate such ceremonies.

It won’t be long before lawsuits appear to force churches into performing same-sex weddings, which then becomes a RFRA (Religious Freedom Restoration Act) test against state interests. That’s not going to be a slam dunk for the churches, either — not by a long shot. The state interest in enforcing constitutional rights is presumed to be strong, plus Kennedy’s opinion lists a number of ancillary state interests that makes SSM an Equal Protection Clause issue:

Quote
The nature of injustice is that we may not always see it in our own times. … Without the recognition, stability, and predictability marriage offers, their children suffer the stigma of knowing their families are somehow lesser. They also suffer the significant material costs of being raised by unmarried parents, relegated through no fault of their own to a more difficult and uncertain family life. The marriage laws at issue here thus harm and humiliate the children of same-sex couples.

And pay particular attention to this passage:

Quote
Many who deem same-sex marriage to be wrong reach that conclusion based on decent and honorable religious or philosophical premises, and neither they nor their beliefs are disparaged here. But when that sincere, personal opposition becomes enacted law and public policy, the necessary consequence is to put the imprimatur of the State itself on an exclusion that soon demeans or stigmatizes those whose own liberty is then denied.

Will a court, reading this holding, decide that the harm of this “exclusion” and the denial of a constitutional right by an agent of the state in performing weddings override the First Amendment right of free exercise of religion? Some may not, but don’t bet on that as a consistent outcome. Furthermore, the legal challenges that will occur will punish these churches, especially smaller congregationalist entities without significant resources. The process will be the punishment — although I’d bet that the first target will be the Catholic Church, which at least has resources to fight it.

I’d also note that Kennedy, who brought up the topic, could have written explicitly that houses of worship and individuals have a First Amendment right not to participate in these ceremonies. That issue has been raised on a number of occasions in the courts. The absence of any such language sends a very disturbing message on religious freedom, in this and many other contexts.

Chief Justice John Roberts sounded the warning in his dissent:

Quote
Federal courts are blunt instruments when it comes to creating rights. They have constitutional power only to resolve concrete cases or controversies; they do not have the flexibility of legislatures to address concerns of parties not before the court or to anticipate problems that may arise from the exercise of a new right. Today’s decision, for example, creates serious questions about religious liberty. Many good and decent people oppose same-sex marriage as a tenet of faith, and their freedom to exercise religion is—unlike the right imagined by the majority— actually spelled out in the Constitution. Amdt. 1. …

The majority’s decision imposing same sex marriage cannot, of course, create any such accommodations. The majority graciously suggests that religious believers may continue to “advocate” and “teach” their views of marriage. Ante, at 27. The First Amendment guarantees, however, the freedom to “exercise” religion. Ominously, that is not a word the majority uses.

Hard questions arise when people of faith exercise religion in ways that may be seen to conflict with the new right to same-sex marriage—when, for example, a religious college provides married student housing only to opposite-sex married couples, or a religious adoption agency declines to place children with same-sex married couples. Indeed, the Solicitor General candidly acknowledged that the tax exemptions of some religious institutions would be in question if they opposed same-sex marriage. See Tr. of Oral Arg. on Question 1, at 36–38. There is little doubt that these and similar questions will soon be before this Court. Unfortunately, people of faith can take no comfort in the treatment they receive from the majority today.

Justice Clarence Thomas also warns that the majority has provided a body blow to religious liberty:

Quote
Aside from undermining the political processes that protect our liberty, the majority’s decision threatens the religious liberty our Nation has long sought to protect. …

In our society, marriage is not simply a governmental institution; it is a religious institution as well. Id., at 7. Today’s decision might change the former, but it cannot change the latter. It appears all but inevitable that the two will come into conflict, particularly as individuals and churches are confronted with demands to participate in and endorse civil marriages between same-sex couples.

The majority appears unmoved by that inevitability. It makes only a weak gesture toward religious liberty in a single paragraph, ante, at 27. And even that gesture indicates a misunderstanding of religious liberty in our Nation’s tradition. Religious liberty is about more than just the protection for “religious organizations and persons . . . as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths.” Ibid. Religious liberty is about freedom of action in matters of religion generally, and the scope of that liberty is directly correlated to the civil restraints placed upon religious practice.7

Although our Constitution provides some protection against such governmental restrictions on religious practices, the People have long elected to afford broader protections than this Court’s constitutional precedents mandate. Had the majority allowed the definition of marriage to be left to the political process—as the Constitution requires—the People could have considered the religious liberty implications of deviating from the traditional definition as part of their deliberative process. Instead, the majority’s decision short-circuits that process, with potentially ruinous consequences for religious liberty.

Get ready for a massive legal assault on houses of worship that refuse to accommodate same-sex weddings. Even legislation on the federal and state level may not be able to undo the broad opening that Kennedy et al has forced on the religious institutions and people in the US. It’s clear that the Supreme Court has become unmoored from the Constitution, and in doing so has unmoored all of us as well.
Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #203 on: July 02, 2015, 05:14:37 am »

From Scott's Email

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Sunday, June 28, 2015
To: Contending for Truth by Dr. Scott Johnson
Subject: How One 501c3 Pastor is Reacting to the Gay Marriage Ruling

Thank you so much for your teaching on the 501c3 church. My husband got very angry with me several months ago when I told him I would no longer go to church because it was 501c3. I even emailed the pastor about the issue which infuriated my husband to no end. Today my husband went to church. I told him the pastor would not say anything about the homosexual marriage ruling. My husband told me repeatedly that the pastor would certainly address it. I watched the sermon online because they have a live stream. NOTHING was said. Not even a single prayer for our country. NOT A WORD. Thank you so much for opening my eyes to the 501c3 issue. I didn't have to go to church and be shocked that the pastor was spineless.
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #204 on: July 02, 2015, 08:22:34 am »

Gay marriage ruling, liberal activists, plus the IRS equals big trouble for 'corporate' Churches

Since the IRS code was amended in 1954 to include “churches” as 501(c)(3) “tax exempt” corporations, only one church has lost its tax-exempt status for violating the IRS code.  Unfortunately, that statistic may be about to increase drastically due to the Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage.

Thanks to the efforts of Texas Democrat senator Lyndon B. Johnson in 1954, almost every church in America today is registered under the 501(c)(3) IRS code.  Johnson promoted the amendment to change the IRS code as what he called a “favor” to churches, but a closer look at history reveals that his ulterior motive was to encourage churches to “formally” register with the IRS for mostly political reasons.  It seems the real reason Johnson wanted to have churches under the control of the IRS was because he believed they were gaining too much political power through their influence from the pulpit over millions of registered voters.  In essence, Johnson wanted to legally silence churches by having them relinquish their constitutional rights under the First Amendment by becoming legal corporate entities subject to the dictates of the State and enforced by the IRS.

Based on last week’s gay marriage ruling by the Supreme Court, churches registered as 501(c)(3) corporations may find Johnson’s efforts less of a “favor” and more of a catastrophe.

While most church leaders ignorantly believe that their “churches” have some sort of protected constitutional rights, as registered 501(c)(3) corporations, they actually have none.  When churches register with the State as 501(c)(3) corporations, they relinquish all “personal” constitutional rights and are governed totally by the dictates of the IRS law through what is known as an “artificial person.”  And since this artificial person is created solely by the power of the State, all churches’ rights, along with their existence, are subject to and limited by the dictates of the 501(c)(3) IRS code – not the Constitution.

Since the SCOTUS ruling on gay marriage, there has been much talk and alarm about churches losing their tax-exempt status.  And because most churches have voluntarily decided since 1954 to become “unequally yoked” with the State, their fears are well founded.  With regard to the State’s power over churches in the matter of upholding Supreme Court Rulings under federal law, what Caesar giveth – Caesar can take away!

Regardless of why churches choose to register with the IRS as tax-exempt corporations, based on the following excerpt from one study, under the new court ruling on gay marriage, 501(c)(3) churches are now stuck between a rock and a hard place:

    By incorporating, the pastor and elders of a church need to realize that they have, in effect, signed a contract with the federal government which they have become legally and morally liable to obey. They cease to exist as a "real" person under the First Amendment with "unalienable" rights, and are transformed into a federal institution under the complete jurisdiction and control of "Acts of Congress." A church can no more change the nature of a contract after the fact than a private individual.” Ecclesia.org

    "As a general proposition, a party is held to what he signs.... One cannot obtain a release from contract liability upon the ground that he did not understand the legal effect of the contract" Len Young Smith and G. Gale Roberson, Smith and Roberson's Business Law, p. 70

Most church leaders believe they are obligated by law to register with the IRS to get their tax-exempt status, but the First Amendment clearly dictates that there has never been any need for churches to formally register with the IRS – neither before the First Amendment’s adoption in 1791 nor since the 1954 IRS law change.

Churches have always been tax-exempt since the First Amendment was enacted.  This excerpt from another study lays out the facts:

    “Does the law require, or even encourage, a church to organize as a 501c3? To answer that question let's turn to what the IRS itself has to say. Churches Need Not Apply.

    In order to be considered for tax-exempt status by the IRS an organization must fill out and submit IRS Form 1023 and 1024. However, note what the IRS says regarding churches and church ministries, in Publication 557:

      Some organizations are NOT required to file Form 1023. These include:

    “Churches, interchurch organizations of local units of a church, conventions or associations of churches, or integrated auxiliaries of a church, such as a men’s or women’s organization, religious school, mission society, or youth group. These organizations are exempt automatically if they meet the requirements of section 501(c)(3).

    Churches Are “Automatically Tax-Exempt”

    According to IRS Code § 508(c)(1)(A):

      Special rules with respect to section 501(c)(3) organizations.

    (a) New organizations must notify secretary that they are applying for recognition of section 501(c)(3) status.

      (c) Exceptions.

      (1) Mandatory exceptions. Subsections (a) and (b) shall NOT apply to—

      (A) Churches, their integrated auxiliaries, and conventions or associations of churches.

    This is referred to as the "mandatory exception" rule. Thus, we see from the IRS’ own publications, and the tax code, that it is completely unnecessary for any church to apply for tax-exempt status. In the IRS’ own words a church “is automatically tax-exempt.”

    Churches Are “Automatically Tax-Deductible”

    So what about tax-deductibility? Doesn’t a church still need to become a 501c3 so that contributions to it can be taken as a tax deduction? The answer is no! According to IRS Publication 526:

      Organizations That Qualify To Receive Deductible Contributions

    You can deduct your contributions only if you make them to a qualified organization. To become a qualified organization, most organizations other than churches and governments, as described below, must apply to the IRS.

    In the IRS’ own words a church “is automatically tax-deductible.”

The government has shown since 1954 to be very lenient in its assessment of what could be considered violations of the IRS law, but Friday’s Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage, along with a highly volatile liberal social climate in America, may lead liberal activists to demand that the government begin scrutinizing more closely the actions and speech of churches regarding gay rights.” Hushmoney.com

The bottom line for corporate churches is this: if a church is registered with the IRS under the 501(c)(3) code, then whatever happens now is completely “on them.”  In essence, the church has no one to blame but itself for the mess it is in now.

Fortunately for churches that are not formally registered with the IRS, they can continue operating without any fear of government or IRS retribution.  (Notwithstanding the forthcoming liberal social persecution, which will be quite intense.)  Not being registered as a 501(c)(3) renders the IRS impotent, leaving the State with no legal mechanism or right to revoke a church’s guaranteed First Amendment tax-exempt status.

In conclusion, if there is any notion that this court ruling is the “end-game” for the liberal gay agenda, think again.  President Obama sent this tweet out after the court ruling.

    “Today is a big step in our march toward equality. Gay and lesbian couples now have the right to marry, just like anyone else.” President Barack Obama/Twitter

Note that President Obama did not say today was the “final” step; which means the march will continue for the LGBT movement.  So are churches the “next” big step in the liberal march toward equality?

Surely in some Democrat political back room, someone is saying he wishes LBJ were here to see this.

Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2015/07/gay_marriage_ruling_liberal_activists_plus_the_irs_equal_big_trouble_for_corporate_churches_.html#ixzz3ejwohYNu

Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #205 on: July 02, 2015, 08:23:37 am »

Ending Tax Exemptions Means Ending Churches
A call for ending tax exemptions for churches and religious institutions is a call to close them down—or at least to plunder them of their property.


Mark Oppenheimer of The New York Times is now calling for the government to remove tax-exempt status from churches. After I posted a link to his article on Facebook, a pastor friend commented: “I’m not sure our small church could survive.” That, my friends, is the point. And Oppenheimer knows it.



Legal gay marriage is not the endgame for the gay-rights movement. It never was. Moral approval is the endgame. The agenda is not tolerance for different beliefs and lifestyles. The agenda is a demand that everyone get on board with the moral revolution or be punished. That means if you or your church won’t get with the program, then the revolutionaries will endeavor to close you down.

But they aren’t going to say,”We’ll close you down,” in so many words. They will cover it in propaganda that conceals their real aim. They’ll say, as Oppenheimer does, that taxpayers are “subsidizing” churches, that ministers make fat-cat six-figure salaries, and that government should get those rich priests and preachers off the government dole.

Never mind that the average base salary of a full-time senior pastor ranges from $33,000 to $70,000 (source). Never mind that ministers do pay income taxes. Never mind that it is absurd to suggest not paying taxes is a subsidy. Never mind that exemptions do function to keep church and state out of one another’s business. That doesn’t fit the fictional narrative activists wish to advance—that these churches don’t deserve to have their “subsidy” continued in light of their intolerable views on sexuality.
The real intent of removing tax-exempt status is to cripple the institutions that continue their dissent from the sexual revolution.

No, the real intent of removing tax-exempt status is to cripple the institutions that continue their dissent from the sexual revolution. When tax exemptions are removed, donors will give far less than they are giving now. Churches will become liable to property taxes. That means that many churches will have to forfeit their property to the government because they won’t be able to afford the taxes they have to pay on it. Many of them wouldn’t be able to pay them now. If donations went down, they would be that much further from being able to pay them. As a result, churches that reside on valuable properties in urban locations would be immediately vulnerable. Eventually, so would everyone else.

Oppenheimer knows this. That is why he argues that if churches can’t raise the money for their new tax burden, then they don’t deserve to retain their property. After all, he argues, the government would do a better job than churches at meeting the needs of their community. He concludes, “So yes, the logic of gay-marriage rights could lead to a reexamination of conservative churches’ tax exemptions… When that day comes, it will be long overdue.”
A call for ending tax exemptions for religious institutions is a call to close them down—or at least to plunder them of their property.

So let’s put aside the propaganda and say clearly what Oppenheimer is calling for. A call for ending tax exemptions for religious institutions is a call to close them down—or at least to plunder them of their property. That is what is going on here. Think of the irreparable harm that would follow if and when these many small churches are effectively forced to close their doors—harm that will come not only to these ministers and parishioners themselves, but also to the poor and vulnerable: lost foster-care services, tutoring of teens, material and spiritual relief for the poor, and character development, often in the places it is needed most.

I am wondering if the average gay-marriage supporter flying the rainbow on his or her Facebook profile knew he or she was signing-up for this when agreeing to support gay marriage? I doubt it. Surely we can come up with more sensible ways for people of good will to hold their differing views—ways that don’t involve annihilating one another. Oppenheimer’s suggestion is not an encouraging sign. Hopefully cooler heads will prevail.

When some of us warned of the religious-liberty implications of making gay marriage a fundamental constitutional right, we were told that such things would never happen. What they really meant was, “That will never happen, but when it does you Christians will deserve it.” Oppenheimer is making the case for why he thinks we deserve it.

Oppenheimer says the Supreme Court has now “settled” the issue. Hardly. This is far from over.

http://thefederalist.com/2015/06/29/ending-tax-exemptions-means-ending-churches/
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #206 on: July 02, 2015, 09:39:32 am »

From Scott's Email

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Sunday, June 28, 2015
To: Contending for Truth by Dr. Scott Johnson
Subject: How One 501c3 Pastor is Reacting to the Gay Marriage Ruling

Thank you so much for your teaching on the 501c3 church. My husband got very angry with me several months ago when I told him I would no longer go to church because it was 501c3. I even emailed the pastor about the issue which infuriated my husband to no end. Today my husband went to church. I told him the pastor would not say anything about the homosexual marriage ruling. My husband told me repeatedly that the pastor would certainly address it. I watched the sermon online because they have a live stream. NOTHING was said. Not even a single prayer for our country. NOT A WORD. Thank you so much for opening my eyes to the 501c3 issue. I didn't have to go to church and be shocked that the pastor was spineless.

Well, the guest pastor at the "church" I and my parents go to preached against it(the other pastor's wife had a baby recently, so he took off).

Anyhow - pt being that while most didn't say anything(and to be frank, they've been silent about it for a long time now), these "some" that did...we're all going to find out if they continue to hold fast to God's word and take a stand, or were they just merely paying lip service.

Otherwise, if they were really serious about taking a stand, they would have done so a long time ago.
Report Spam   Logged
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #207 on: July 07, 2015, 06:24:37 am »

Homosexual Advocates Call for Churches to Lose Tax-Exempt Status Following ‘Gay Marriage’ Ruling

At least two outspoken homosexual advocates are calling for churches nationwide to lose their tax-exempt status following last month’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling declaring that all 50 states must legalize same-sex “marriage.”

“[N]ow that the U.S. government formally recognizes marriage equality as a fundamental right, it really shouldn’t skew the tax code so as to give millions of dollars in tax breaks to groups which remain steadfastly bigoted on the subject,” wrote Felix Salmon, senior editor for Fusion, in an article entitled “Does Your Church Ban Gay Marriage? Then It Should Start Paying Taxes” last Monday.

He pointed to the Supreme Court ruling that resulted in the revocation of Bob Jones University’s tax exemption because of its stance surrounding interracial couples.

“The same argument can and should be applied to gay marriage,” Salmon stated. “If your organization does not support the right of gay men and women to marry, then the government should be very clear that you’re in the wrong. And it should certainly not bend over backwards to give you the privilege of tax exemption.”

He said that while he understands the concept of religious freedom, he doesn’t believe churches should be “rewarded” with tax exemption if their beliefs are contrary to Supreme Court rulings.

“[W]hen those views are fanatical and hurtful, they come into conflict with the views of any honorable legislator who believes in freedom and equality. And at that point, it makes perfect sense for our elected representatives to register their disapproval by abolishing the tax exemption for organizations who cling to narrow-minded and anachronistic views,” Salmon wrote.

TIME columnist Mark Oppenheimer made similar statements the day before in an article entitled “Now’s the Time to End Tax Exemptions for Religious Institutions”, commenting on a bill introduced by Utah Sen. Mark Lee, which seeks to protect the tax-exempt status of churches in light of the Supreme Court ruling.

    Connect with Christian News

“Rather than try to rescue tax-exempt status for organizations that dissent from settled public policy on matters of race or sexuality, we need to take a more radical step. It’s time to abolish, or greatly diminish, their tax-exempt statuses,” he wrote.

Oppenheimer then sought to dispute reasons for allowing the exemption to remain in place.

“Defenders of tax exemptions and deductions argue that if we got rid of them charitable giving would drop. It surely would, although how much, we can’t say,” he said. “Of course government revenue would go up, and that money could be used to, say, house the homeless and feed the hungry. We’d have fewer church soup kitchens—but countries that truly care about poverty don’t rely on churches to run soup kitchens.”

“[T]he logic of gay-marriage rights could lead to a reexamination of conservative churches’ tax exemptions,” Oppenheimer repeated. “But when that day comes, it will be long overdue.”

Aaron Goldstein, a writer for the American Spectator, disagreed. While he divulged that he personally supports same-sex “marriage,” he doesn’t believe the government has a right to meddle in the beliefs of the Church and noted that the Bob Jones ruling only applied to schools.

“Contrary to Salmon’s claims that the government should be very clear in telling churches they are in the wrong for not supporting same-sex marriage, there is absolutely no governmental interest where it concerns the affairs of churches or purely religious institutions,” he wrote. “Simply put, the government has no business telling churches and purely religious institutions that they are wrong about opposition to gay marriage or any other matter.”

“The federal government must leave churches, synagogues, mosques and other religious assemblies alone in this matter,” Goldstein said. “If they do not see fit to leave them alone, then the very concept of separation of church and state will have lost all meaning. It would end the separation of church and state as we know it.”

As previously reported, prior to the U.S. Supreme Court decision, Patrick Henry College Chancellor and Chairman of the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) Michael Farris warned that if the court ruled in favor of homosexual nuptials, the decision could result in tax exemption revocation for Christian schools. However, he also opined that the threat will not likely end there.

“No one should think that IRS implications will stop with colleges. Religious high schools, grade schools and any other religious institution will face the same outcome. And this includes churches,” Farris said. “Even if it takes the IRS years to begin the enforcement proceedings against such institutions, we can expect other fallout from this decision to begin shortly after the release of the Supreme Court’s opinion.”

According to the documentary “A Defense of God’s Law,” the nation’s decision to allow tax exemption for churches was grounded in Scripture. It cites Ezra 7:24, which outlines, “Also we certify you, that touching any of the priests and Levites, singers, porters, Nethinims, or ministers of this house of God, it shall not be lawful to impose toll, tribute, or custom, upon them.”

http://christiannews.net/2015/07/06/homosexual-advocates-call-for-churches-to-lose-tax-exempt-status-following-gay-marriage-ruling/
Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Mark
Administrator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 21393



View Profile
« Reply #208 on: July 10, 2015, 07:38:36 am »

For Churches That Won't Perform Same-Sex Weddings, Insurance Begins to Look Iffy

In the aftermath of Obergefell v. Hodges, pastors and church members are experiencing a wave of anxiety over what many of them deem the "nightmare scenario": lawsuits or government action designed to force them to perform or recognize same-sex marriages. While there are — so far — no meaningful judicial precedents that would permit such dramatic interference with churches' core First Amendment rights, lawsuits challenging church liberties are inevitable.

Indeed, the Iowa Civil Rights Commission has declared that prohibitions against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity "sometimes" apply to churches and has stated that a "church service open to the public" is not a "bona fide religious purpose" that would limit application of the law. In 2012 a New Jersey administrative-law judge ruled that a religious organization "closely associated with the United Methodist Church" wrongly denied access to its facilities for a same-sex wedding.
ADVERTISEMENT

Churches, like virtually every functioning corporation, protect against liability risks and the potentially ruinous costs of litigation through liability insurance. With same-sex marriage now recognized as a constitutional right — and with news of Oregon's Bureau of Labor and Industries awarding a lesbian couple $135,000 in damages for "emotional, mental and physical suffering" after a Christian bakery refused to bake their wedding cake — pastors are reaching out insurance companies to make sure they're covered. And at least one insurer has responded with a preemptory denial: no coverage if a church is sued for refusing to perform a same-sex wedding.

On July 1, David Karns, vice president of underwriting at Southern Mutual Church Insurance Company (which "serve[s ] more than 8,400 churches"), wrote an "all states" agents' bulletin addressing same-sex marriage. It begins: "We have received numerous calls and emails regarding the Supreme Court's ruling on same-sex marriages. The main concern is whether or not liability coverage applies in the event a church gets sued for declining to perform a same-sex marriage." Karns continues:

The general liability form does not provide any coverage for this type of situation, since there is no bodily injury, property damage, personal injury, or advertising injury. If a church is concerned about the possibility of a suit, we do offer Miscellaneous Legal Defense Coverage. This is not liability coverage, but rather expense reimbursement for defense costs. There is no coverage for any judgments against an insured.

In other words: Churches, you're on your own. National Review has tried to reach Mr. Karns and Southern Mutual's corporate office, and they have not yet returned our calls.

It is unusual for an insurer to deny purely hypothetical claims. Typically, coverage decisions are made only after evaluating the claims in the complaint and the terms of the insurance policy. Indeed, when National Review reached out to other church insurers to see if they had made similar communications to their insureds, State Farm responded simply: "It can be confusing to customers to publicly address broad, hypothetical situations. Every claim is assessed on its own merits, in line with the language of the policy, coverages, and endorsements purchased." Other church-insurance companies, including Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company and Church Mutual Insurance Company, stated that they had made no blanket communications to their insureds regarding coverage. Brotherhood did, however, post a brief legal analysis of Obergefell that included suggested steps for avoiding litigation.

Moreover, if past practice is any guide, litigants are very likely to allege that they suffered "personal injury" if a church refuses to perform or host their wedding ceremony. Indeed, in the Oregon bakery case, the lesbian couple alleged an array of injuries, including "impaired digestion," "high blood pressure," "excessive sleep," "migraine headaches," and "anxiety." And those allegations were over a mere cake (a cake they were able to immediately replace), not the entire wedding.

The defense of religious liberty is about more than legal doctrines. Even the most robust of legal protections can seem hollow indeed if a church risks financial ruin in response to a lawsuit. Erik Stanley, a senior legal counsel with the Alliance Defending Freedom (disclosure: I'm a former senior counsel at ADF and occasionally give speeches at ADF events), notes that even though churches can obtain high-quality pro bono counsel, legal nonprofits do not and cannot indemnify a church's potential liabilities. That's what insurance is for. Yet, as of July 1, it appears that thousands of American churches are more exposed than they imagined. And what's the real-world result of Southern Mutual's decision? Stanley, who focuses much of his practice on defending the religious-liberty rights of pastors and churches, was blunt: "More fear." And fear can mean that the battle for religious freedom is lost even before it's fully joined.

Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/for-churches-that-wont-perform-same-sex-weddings-insurance-begins-to-look-iffy-141329/#Ovrr8vAfxFCLt8Z3.99
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 07:44:58 am by Mark » Report Spam   Logged

What can you do for Jesus?  Learn what 1 person can accomplish.

The Man from George Street
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkjMvPhLrn8
Psalm 51:17
Global Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 28357


View Profile
« Reply #209 on: July 18, 2015, 05:22:38 pm »

http://www.abcactionnews.com/news/hillsborough-regional-news/church-members-complain-about-collection-notices
Church members complain about collection notices
7/14/15

Most people who attend church are used to seeing the offering plate passed around the pews.  People donate what they can as a proud member of the congregation.
 
But a Tampa woman told ABC Action News her church says she must pay more than $1,000 a year in donations or she wouldn't be considered a member.
 
"People were really friendly there, and I really enjoyed being there," said Candace Petterson.
 
Petterson said finding the Greater Mount Moriah Primitive Baptist Church was a blessing. The single mother had been looking for a church closer to her new home and six months in, things were going perfectly. That is, until she received an odd letter at her home last week.
 
"To be a member in good standing and have the right to vote, adults are to contribute the minimum amount of $50 per month," read Petterson.
 
To her surprise it was from the church stating she was delinquent in her financial support.
 
"Fifty dollars per month, now this shocked me because I haven't heard about the $50 per month.  So where did this come from?" asked Petterson. "Then Mount Moriah day is on there, $150."
 
The letter goes on to tell Petterson along with those two charges, she would also be on the hook for a yearly church anniversary fee of $250-- a total of $1,000 in required donations a year. Petterson says she was told one of the fees is to help pay off debt held by the church.
 
"What church charges you to help pay off what they're going through, I'm not there for that," said Petterson.
 
Even Petterson's 11-year-old child would have to meet the financial obligations, or also face possible scrutiny.
 
"My child don't have a job, I'm her parent. She's 11 years old.  Why would you charge a child $5 a month to be a member of a church?" said Petterson.
 
We reached out to church leaders who acknowledged the letter had come from them, but did not offer any other explanation.
 
We also left several messages for the church's pastor, but so far, have not heard back.  At this point, Petterson says she'll now try and find a new place of worship. But she worries others might be being taken advantage of by what amounts to a membership fee.
 
"It's like you say to me, if you want to be a member of this church, you need to pay this.  If you want to find God, it don't say anything like that in the Bible," said Petterson.
Report Spam   Logged
Pages: 1 ... 5 6 [7] 8   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by EzPortal
Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
Free SMF Hosting - Create your own Forum

Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy