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Discussion Forum : News and Current Events : pastors preach politics and challenge irs

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 Re: Ours is a heavenly calling

Then when the IRS comes down on these pastors let them not cry persecution for Christ. Let them not say they are being persecuted for the gospel. These pastors are making a political statement and not a gospel statement.

Our message a kingdom message. It is centered on the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Our commission as laid out at the end pf Mathew 28 is to disciple nations. To teach them about Jesus.

We must stop this thinking with the mind of man and think with the mind of Christ. Our security does not lie the Constitution or the Bill if rights. But our security is in Jesus.

Again these pastors have forgotten their heavenly calling. They are thinking with the mind of man. Certainly not with the mind of Christ. I see nothing of Christ and his work of redemption in what these men are doing.

Bearnaster.

.

 2012/9/21 7:33
rainydaygirl
Member



Joined: 2008/10/27
Posts: 742


 Re:

thanks for the answers and sharing your opinions on this topic. i have talked to a few people and seems just like the election its a split down the middle on if these pastors should be doing this or not. after listening and reading to what everyone has had to say i am not as sure as i was. i feel kind of torn over the whole thing.

editing my post- i was going to leave off there but i kind of like that is disingenuous of me. i have learned a few other things from this discussion, i am not as sure as i thought i was about the whole not voting. i still believe both men need my prayers but i begin to understand the position those who do vote come from. i don't want to dismiss their hearts as not caring about Jesus, i believe they do. i'm learning that i don't have as much to say as i once thought i did, after all who am i that i should pronounce my opinions on others as if i have understanding on everything.

i'm going to be praying more about this i really want to know all that the Lord has for me to see and understand.
rdg

 2012/9/21 8:04Profile
ccchhhrrriiisss
Member



Joined: 2003/11/23
Posts: 4476


 Re:

Hi amrkelly,

Quote:

The 1954 Tax Amendment is law and has been sighted in many instances by the IRS as the article states. Given that we should render to Caesar that which is due to Caesar this exemption status was already a compromise at the time it was negotiated in 1953/4. It amounted then to an agreement by churches to keep candidature statements out of the pulpit at a time of elections for public office. The church has used and abused this law, just as the state has used it as a more general lever to silence pastors when it has suited some candidate or other or else the IRS itself. Claiming ones rights under the 1st Amendment does not amount to preaching the Truth. The Amendments of the USA are not Truth they are politics. (from the Greek…to live in a city).



I don't find anywhere that these pastors are saying that the Constitution is "truth." The Constitution is the law of the land by which all other politicians, governors, presidents, congressmen, school boards, and, yes, IRS workers/rules are accountable. It is simply the law that confirms or negates other laws.

If you listen to or read the decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court, you find that their decisions are ALWAYS to either confirm or strike down laws or rulings based upon laws in lower courts or jurisdiction. There are laws that are passed today that will not stand a few years from now. In fact, there are even Supreme Court decisions that can be overturned years from now (e.g. Plessy v. Ferguson, Dred Scott v. Sandford, etc...).

I don't find any of these pastors to be claim that "claiming ones rights" amounts to preaching the Truth. Nor do I think that any IRS code takes precedent over the Bill of Rights. If these are men of God, they are going to preach the Truth uninhibited. However, I do believe that they are saying that they should not fear government repercussions if they preach doctrinal truths from the Word of God.

The First Amendment says that Congress (and, by extension, the IRS) cannot make a law that prohibits the free exercise of religion. Increasingly, politicians and political appointees from the Left have targeted churches, ministries and ministers if they say something that is "deemed political."

As I said, ANYTHING can be called "politics" simply because the root of the term itself is "citizens." If some/all of the citizens have faith (or if the state claims to protect the right to faith), then they conclude that "faith" is "political."

The concern that many churches share is one regarding government intrusion to the pulpit. Yes, we should preach anyway. However, there is nothing in Scripture that says that we cannot express opposition to a rule or law. And, of course, we can always point out when someone else is in violation of the secular law (as Paul did when he was about to be flogged in Jerusalem). Moreover, we can "appeal" any decision as well.

On a personal level, I wouldn't do what is suggested that some pastors will do in October. However, this is akin to the "sit down" strikes and other forms of non-violent protests during the Civil Rights movement. They may be setting up a confrontation so that they can settle this matter in the courts of law whereas to determine whether the First Amendment is violated by restrictions for tax exemption purposes.

In addition, some of these churches might want to point out the hypocrisy of the recent trend from government and tax officials at targeting churches for "political" endorsements while allowing other tax exemptions to stand -- including Planned Parenthood, NPR, PBS or even "Liberation Theology" activist congregations.


_________________
Christopher

 2012/9/21 12:10Profile
ccchhhrrriiisss
Member



Joined: 2003/11/23
Posts: 4476


 Re:

Quote:

Again these pastors have forgotten their heavenly calling. They are thinking with the mind of man. Certainly not with the mind of Christ. I see nothing of Christ and his work of redemption in what these men are doing.



Have you spoken with these men for clarity?
Is it wise to make such a public declaration?
Is it wise to make such a vague public generalization?


_________________
Christopher

 2012/9/21 12:12Profile









 Re:

Chris the forthcoming actions of these men will speak for themselves. These men are supposed to be shepherds feeding their flock. They should be teaching tbeir congregations to obey the law. Yet they are setting an unchristlike example of defying th law by provoking a showdown with the IRS. And for what? Just so pastors can make political statements and support political candidates without violating tbeir 501c3. This is not the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Jesus and his apostle taught submission to governing authorities. And that under an oppressive Roman emperor. The only time a Christian may disobey the law of the state with a clear conscience is when the gospel is involved.

The early believers suffered because they would not sacrifice to caesar as a god. This was unthinkable to a Christian as he believed in the One True God. That being Jesus. This brought these Christians in conflict with caesar. They had disobeyed him. But in this case they had obeyed God rather than man.

We can speak of Daniel, Corrie Ten Boon, Dietrich Bonhoffer, Richard Wornbrandt, the persecuted church. When the gospel at stake then one must obey God rather then men.

What these pastors are doing is not a gospel issue. Thus their actions should bei called into question. For surely their actions are not consistent with the gospel of Jesus.

Bearmaster.

 2012/9/21 13:31
ccchhhrrriiisss
Member



Joined: 2003/11/23
Posts: 4476


 Re:

Hi bearmaster,

Yes, their actions will speak for themselves. However, some people aren't very good listeners. Some people have a bad gift of "reading between the lines." And, of course, the actions and motives of one person doesn't speak for the rest.

According to this organization, they are obeying the law. They will be preaching the Gospel and shepherding the flock and the preeminent law (the Constitution) says that Congress cannot make a law to prohibit the free exercise of this. Their position is that the IRS has been breaking this "right" by unfairly targeting Christians, churches and ministries that adhere to beliefs that don't conform to what Liberal politicians believe to be "acceptable."

You don't know these men. You don't know how they preach or conduct their congregations. You don't know the doctrines that they adhere to. You seem to gather your information from the context of an article written by one journalist at a secular news source. Thus, you really have no justification to publicly proclaim that "this is not the gospel of Jesus Christ."

Jesus certainly taught submission to government. However, as I pointed out, even in this article, these pastors are claiming that they ARE obeying the law of the land when it comes to the free exercise of religion. Elected politicians in this "government of the people" have no right to tell a church what they can or cannot teach. The Constitution is as clear about this as Roman law was about flogging a Roman citizen without a trial.

You mentioned Corrie ten Boom:
She violated the "law" of the Nazi conquerors when she smuggled a Bible into the concentration camp.

You mentioned David Wilkerson:
He was once arrested for violating a "law" for preaching on the streets of New York without a permit.

You mentioned Richard Wurmbrand:
He was arrested twice in his home country for violating the "law" by preaching without government approval of his words. In America, he lobbied the U.S. Government to take up the cause of the persecuted church.

You mentioned Dietrich Bonhoeffer:
He was arrested for violating laws regarding the use of his membership in the Abwehr to circumvent other laws forbidding anyone from publicly speaking against Hitler and Nazi Germany.

These believers were persecuted because they "violated the law." I think that Christians and many pastors are concerned that politicians and government workers are violating the premier law in an effort to make Christians comply with the social, economic and moral views or Liberals. The concern is that it is a first step in thwarting free speech and religious liberty by using the IRS and tax status as a Big Brother watchdog organization that would penalize believers based upon what they teach.

Remember: The Word of God is quite clear about sin. In this day and age, certain groups are quite adamant that their sin should be "protected" from criticism. They lobby elected politicians -- mostly on the Left -- to "protect" their views, beliefs and lifestyles from criticism. Thus, to many of these Liberals, a preacher is filled with "hate speech" simply by preaching the view of the Word of God on issues like abortion, homosexuality or other issues.

Since we have not met every one of these pastors, we should not claim that what they are doing is "not a gospel issue" or is "not consistent with the Gospel of Jesus Christ." For all we know, they might simply tell the truth on October 7th without fear of reprisal from a handful of elected politicians.


_________________
Christopher

 2012/9/21 14:35Profile
rainydaygirl
Member



Joined: 2008/10/27
Posts: 742


 Re:

by ccchhhrrriiisss on 2012/9/21 11:35:43

Remember: The Word of God is quite clear about sin. In this day and age, certain groups are quite adamant that their sin should be "protected" from criticism. They lobby elected politicians -- mostly on the Left -- to "protect" their views, beliefs and lifestyles from criticism. Thus, to many of these Liberals, a preacher is filled with "hate speech" simply by preaching the view of the Word of God on issues like abortion, homosexuality or other issues.

Since we have not met every one of these pastors, we should not claim that what they are doing is "not a gospel issue" or is "not consistent with the Gospel of Jesus Christ." For all we know, they might simply tell the truth on October 7th without fear of reprisal from a handful of elected politicians.
---

you have really given me lots to think about. i will admit that i had not really thought about this from the point of view you are saying concerning the Constitutions. also why would it be wrong for a pastor to teach those under his care to be weary of a certain people/groups if what they are doing is going against Gods law like some political people are today. i was thinking wouldn't that pastor be obligated to warn those under his care?

rdg

 2012/9/21 14:54Profile









 Re: pastors preach politics and challenge irs

Thank you Chris for your reply and insights on this topic! I hope my response is understood to be a concern which is valid and speaks to the heart of the original OP.

For me this business of saints appealing to the law is one thing, and speaking to the law as a reasonable political expression are very different things. The Apostle Paul exercised the former and in the end it cost him his life. Paul never sought to change the law or to speak into the law in a political expression of his Roman Citizenship. He simply appealed to Caesar in order to resist being unjustly beaten by a Roman Centurion who was more interested in appeasing a growing crowd demanding Paul’s punishment than upholding the law he was sworn to uphold. This appeal of Paul is not political yet it attends so closely to what “politic” means that he was bound in the end to accept a more costly outcome than the original unjust beating. Paul’s right attitude and understanding of this can be seen in his final letter in which he expresses his contentment that his time for departing this life had come. By appealing to Caesar Paul brought himself right into the reality of the meaning of a citizen being subject to the law. God did not deliver Paul so Paul had to pay the price of the demand of the law. Only a rebellious person seeks to resist the law having appealed to it in the first place. I have no doubt that Paul was acting in the leading of The Holy Spirit and so he made the choice to appeal to Caesar, according to God’s will.

Jesus however taught us to suffer for the sake of righteousness. The Lord never resisted the laws of Rome, nor did He appeal to them. The fullness of the Lord’s attitude to the law can be seen in His words to the Governor of Judea “you would have no authority but that My Father had given it to you”. In contrast the Lord refused to even acknowledge the Pharisees who were so determined to compel Pilate according to Roman law, to crucify The Lord.

Unless we discern the times we live in it seems to me that it is unlikely that saints will understand why we need to put our focus on another kingdom and another citizenship; even another City. It is true that it is not possible to be certain what these pastors are actually thinking or whether they will achieve their ambitions without actually having to break the law. Motive is not a justification for law breaking, only obedience to God. Even then we had better be ready to pay the inevitable price and be willing to suffer for the sake of righteousness. If we are not led by God we will end up stumbling ourselves into further disobedience.

The 1000 pastors having accepted the benefit of the law regarding their tax exempt status according to the 1954 Amendment may well be exercising a citizenship right grounded in the 1st Amendment , but is it really wise? Is it a good example to the churches?

 2012/9/21 15:15
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5087
NC, USA

 Re:

It certainly seems that what these pastors are doing may backfire.

I would not trust any Federal court today in interpreting the Constitution. A court may hold that a church DOES have to pay taxes.

Of course, I am no expert in tax law but a court can do what it wants.


_________________
Todd

 2012/9/21 15:23Profile









 Re:

Again let us be clear. This is not an issue of the gospel ot Jesus Christ. This is not an issue where the government is saying these pastors cannot preach the gospel of Jesus. This is not an issue where the government is saying these churches cannot evangelize.

This is an issue where pastors want to make political statements and name political candidates and still keep their 501c3 status.

Jesus did not call us to be involved in the political affairs of this nation. Our calling, our mandate is to be his ambassadors. An ambassador does not get involved in the affairs of the nation he is stationed in. An ambassador represents the interest of his home country. This is what we as Christians are called to do. We represent the interest of King Jesus. We invite people into a saving relationship with him.

We obey the government in that its laws do not conflict with the gospel. We pray for the governing authorities. Pray for their salvation. But we do not challenge governmental authority to make a political statement. Thus is not the reaching of the New Testament. And it is not a gospel witness.

Bearmaster.



 2012/9/21 15:46





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