Why Some Churches Should Lose Their Tax Exempt Status
The Gospel of Jesus Christ has been perverted on many fronts by pastors who have enacted principles of mega-church entrepreneurship that have turned Christianity into a multi-billion dollar business rather than fulfilling the mission of reaching out to a hurting world.
Nearly 20 years ago, Christian apologist Hank Hanegraaf warned of this dynamic in his book appropriately entitled Christianity in Crisis. The book chronicled the dangers of mega church pastors like Benny Hinn, Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Hagin, Jesse Duplantis, and many others who were leading people astray with a gospel of health and wealth.
A few years ago, Hanegraaf released a follow-up book entitled Christianity in Crisis: The 21st Century dealing with the modern day promoters of the feel good health and wealth message like Joyce Meyer, John Hagee, Td Jakes, Creflo Dollar, and Joel Osteen just to name a few. Because of this...
Some of these fellows don't even have Churches, they are televangelists, e.g. "Pastor Arnold Murray, an Identity preacher from Gravette, Arkansas,..." q.v., Identity: A 'Christian' Religion for White Racists, as far as I can tell has a studio and warehouse for his materials, but if he has a church it's a small one, I believe.
Hank Handigraff, while probably right on some of this stuff, does have some interesting theology, which a lot of people don't agree with, q.v., Debate on the Date of the Book of Revelation, but there are others besides those of the health-wealth ministry trying to make a fast buck, and it really the size of the religious group, doesn't make any difference.
2 Corinthians 2 17 For we are not like many, peddling the word of God, but as from sincerity, but as from God, we speak in Christ in the sight of God.---NASB
There are many reasons both churches want to incorporate, and governments want them to, such as for liability. As far as taxes go, all churches should be required to pay them, .
Legally all churches that have registered with the government, receive their permission to exist from the government; therefore they are in fact subordinate to the government that gives them ‚Äúlegal‚ÄĚ status. Genuine Christian worship and obedience cannot be subordinate to anything except the word of God! I exist because Christ shed His blood for me on the cross and I am only to be subject to Him and His word.
In 1954, Congress approved an amendment by Sen. Lyndon Johnson to prohibit 501(c)(3) organizations, which includes charities and churches, from engaging in any political campaign activity. To the extent Congress has revisited the ban over the years, it has in fact strengthened the ban. The most recent change came in 1987 when Congress amended the language to clarify that the prohibition also applies to statements opposing candidates.
In my opinion, no church should register with the government.
How did this turn from tax exemption to the defining church? Now I do not believe that that just because the churches start paying taxes the cities would stop hating them, but it will set a good testomory to the city. If you are to look in most of the house church cases, and cases of the church changing where they meet, it has always been the city that went against them not the state or Federal government.
"...by 1971, the amount of real and personal property owned by U.S. churches was approx. $110 billion. In New York City alone, the amount was $3 billion in 1989. A 1986 estimate showed religious income in that year of approx. $100 billion, or about five times the income of the five largest corporations in the U.S. All tax free." (see post below)
KJV English speaking-Onlyist wrote: There is a difference between tithes and free gifts. If these tax exempt manga-clubs start paying taxes. I know what I am talking about, my dad try to start a house church, the city we live in at that time said we have to do a whole much of things just to get a city permit for a church, and all the money that it would come to(dad had to stop the work because of this) maybe 5 to 10 years worth of taxes. And you want more prove of how much cities hate tax exempt churches(clubs) just go to CLA. And Mike I'm talking about the church's testomory to the city, not the city's sentiments. You know if the IRS make where people don't get give to church(clubs), that how bad (")Christen(") are today. That our testomory to the US.
More unintended consequences of not defining church rightly. Where is chapter and verse biblical principle for asking government permission so church can meet in the first place? I do know of one house church. Guess what? They don't ask government permission to meet, the homeowner gives it. By what principle should a government enterprise collect anything from them? I'm sorry, but Christians are not obligated to support titled thieves.
"An IRS attorney cites a brothel "church," where sisterly love is offered to male parishioners in exchange for donations. In Hardenburgh, New York several years ago, 235 of the 239 property owners in that town were granted religious tax exemption because the properties of the owners were made branches of the mail-order "Universal Life Church." In Wisconsin, hotels, pay parking lots, farms, and communion wafer bakeries are among the church holdings that are tax exempt. Overall, at least $4.2 billion in tax-exempt religious property now exists in that state alone. And the monumental moral corruption of the Catholic Church as evidenced by the many sexual abuse scandals is particularly galling when one contemplates the vast (and covert) wealth of that particular enterprise.
It's a racket, and it costs taxpayers even more money to monitor, uncover and fight the abuse it invites - none of which would be necessary if such unenforceable loopholes in our tax code never existed.
Because it costs you and me billions. We are not talking chump change here. Consider that for every tax dollar a religious organization does not pay, you and I pay it on its behalf. Many are among the wealthiest organizations in the world:"Tax the Churches
There is a difference between tithes and free gifts. If these tax exempt manga-clubs start paying taxes. I know what I am talking about, my dad try to start a house church, the city we live in at that time said we have to do a whole much of things just to get a city permit for a church, and all the money that it would come to(dad had to stop the work because of this) maybe 5 to 10 years worth of taxes. And you want more prove of how much cities hate tax exempt churches(clubs) just go to CLA. And Mike I'm talking about the church's testomory to the city, not the city's sentiments. You know if the IRS make where people don't get give to church(clubs), that how bad (")Christen(") are today. That our testomory to the US. And tell where me where we are to complain about how much we had to pay to taxes in the Bible(KJV).
its only money wrote: --- Pay your taxes if you are a real Christian. Leave the arguements around mammon worship to the Liberals, Roman Catholics and other false witnesses.
Christians pay taxes on their income, when buying things, on their properties, etc. Money contributed to the Church has already been taxed. Why should they be taxed again for entering a building to worship? How about rendering to Caesar the ball and chain of self-discipline Caesar needs?
KJV English speaking-Onlyist wrote: By having tax exemption for the church does two wrong things 1. It disobeys Jesus's command to pay taxes(Mark 12:17) 2. It make the city in which the church is in mad that they have so much land, buildings that are not paying taxes, that when the good Bible-believing house churches or churches come they don't want them in their city. ---
1. No it doesn't. See above response to "its only money"
2. Christians should worry over the sentiments of unbelievers? Is that in the Bible? Maybe if we started defining "church" properly, they wouldn't be confused. Remember as well, buildings don't pay taxes, taxpayers do.
By having tax exemption for the church does two wrong things 1. It disobeys Jesus's command to pay taxes(Mark 12:17) 2. It make the city in which the church is in mad that they have so much land, buildings that are not paying taxes, that when the good Bible-believing house churches or churches come they don't want them in their city. The only religious leaders that any thing like tax exemption in the Bible is in Genesis 47:22, if that don't show what is bad with tax exemption, I don't know what.
"if we were to give account of all the mega-church ministers who live a life of luxury with the funds they solicit from their unsuspecting audiences"
Or should that be "gullible"?
Lets face it the Liberals have re-invented church to milk the non-Christian religious reprobate. (serves them right) = And hey presto you get Mega-church a new comic hero for the masses of gullible fools who haven't a clue what the Bible really says.
Taxes?? What did Jesus say? Quote, "Whose mugshot is on this coin?" U/q. (paraphrasing). Or Matt 22:17 Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not? 18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites? 19 Shew me the tribute money. And they brought unto him a penny. 20 And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? 21 They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's."
Pay your taxes if you are a real Christian. Leave the arguements around mammon worship to the Liberals, Roman Catholics and other false witnesses.
why would a believer of the kingdom go to babylon and ask babylon to use the sword (power of state) to subdue false teachers?
where in scripture did Paul go to the Romans to go after false teachers?
this is not the way to go about it!
first the churches succumb to the snares of Johnsons 501, now going to the power of the sword (state) to, in a way, get permission to be the church. then when things go awry (as obviously they would), we go back to the power of the sword (state) to take those out who profitted from the new coorporate business model church.
once the power of the sword (state) starts looking deeply into the affairs of churches, we have said goodbye to the bll of rghts, yes freedom of worship and assembly. God has given us the responsibility to choose who we associate with and who we worship.
are we going to go to congregates of Jakes and tell them they do not have the right to worship there and we will get the Pharoah to stop it?
do we want the darwinists coming into our churches and analyzing our sermons to see if they are ok? and what will be their qualifications, those who do not know the scriptures will judge by how good they've made the power of the sword look.