That's the title of an excellent post, dated August 14, 2004, on the Public Christian website.
There's plenty of commentary there on the post running right up to the present. I added my own that was still in moderation the last time I checked. Here it is for those who are interested:
Tom Usher Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.
March 16th, 2008 at 4:00 pm [everyone's server isn't set to show the same time]
This is a great post. The comments must also be found thought provoking by most who read and consider them. On the Real Liberal Christian Church website (realliberalchristianchurch.org), you will find that I've written extensively about self-styled conservative-Republican Christians and others who mistakenly believe themselves to be followers of Jesus. You will find that I refer to Jesus as a small-c communist — not to be confused with the one-party dictatorship under Marxism-Leninism. The difference lies in Jesus's anti-coercion and spirituality. Marx and Lenin were, of course, highly coercive (violent, even deadly). In addition, they were what is termed materialists — disbelievers in spirit in the sense in which Jesus means the term "spirit."
You will find that I've explained and documented the textual foundation for this position. Even the very name of our Church is intentionally designed to cause one to remember the proper meaning of the words. You will see that our header contains the verse, "The vile person shall be no more called liberal, nor the churl said to be bountiful." — Isaiah 32:5. That verse is interpreted on the site. Its prophetic importance is also explained.
Please come visit and feel free to leave your comments. This subject matter, covered here and on the Real Liberal Christian Church site, is of critical importance and needs to become common knowledge. It needs to come to be on the minds and in the hearts of every soul on Earth. Then God will amaze the whole of humanity.
God bless everyone.
The following should appear at the end of every post:
According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":
Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.
Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.
Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.
Political Campaign Intervention
Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.
Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.
Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:
- Whether the statement identifies one or more candidates for a given public office
- Whether the statement expresses approval or disapproval of one or more candidates' positions and/or actions
- Whether the statement is delivered close in time to the election
- Whether the statement makes reference to voting or an election
- Whether the issue addressed distinguishes candidates for a given office
Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:
- The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
- Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
- We are not trying to influence secular elections but rather want people to come out from that entire fallen system.
- When we analyze or discuss what is termed "public policy," we do it entirely from a theological standpoint with an eye to educating professing Christians and those to whom we are openly always proselytizing to convert to authentic Christianity.
- It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
- We are not rich and wouldn't be looking for a fight regardless. What we cannot do is compromise our faith (which seeks to harm nobody, quite the contrary).
- We render unto Caesar what is Caesar's. We render unto God what is God's.
- When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
- We consider the IRS code on this matter as deliberate economic duress (a form of coercion) and a direct attempt by the federal government to censor dissenting, free political and religious speech.
- It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.
And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)