Do you want tons of links to your site, or do you want to be right?
"Links are votes for your site," I was told recently in an email from a site offering Search Engine Optimization. "Tell me something I don't already know," my older brother always used to say — good saying.
Well, those who want links and to be popular most often want traffic for commercial reasons. They want the ads on their site to generate lots of money. They want people to click through to sites where they are affiliates so they may earn a commission on a sale. Okay. There are links on this site that if people click through and buy something, the Church will get a commission. Where will the money go though — to what cause to what purpose? That's the question. The answer also determines whether or not this site will be popular and why or why not.
Why was Jesus so popular? He healed people. He fed people by multiplying food. He told them things that gave them more than hope but certainty in what was to come. He was scrupulously honest. He was perfectly consistent. He stood up to the overlords and oppressors. He gave his life so the message would continue doing its work. Those are all good reasons. Those are all great reasons. They are reasons to love him, and we do.
Why his is so unpopular now? Why is he so hated? Well, he isn't here in the flesh in the same exact sense he was before. He isn't walking about healing people. Although on another level, his spirit does heal some people who just have that kind and degree of faith. They are special souls, unfortunately rare. He's not multiplying food. Although he could do that the same way he did before through God, by God. However, there just isn't the faith that there was when he did it before as recorded in the Gospels.
Is he still scrupulously honest, perfectly consistent, standing up to the overlords and oppressors, still deserving of full credit for having given his life in faith so the message would continue doing its work? Yes, absolutely he is. However, without the signs of healing and food multiplication and the other things called miracles, people don't hold him up the way they used to. Over time, their esteem for him has waxed colder and colder in general.
This site, since it hearkens back to the original message of Jesus is seen and then what? People read that the plan is to bring forth food free of charge for the hungry from farmlands obtained with the donations of people with the real Christian spirit and lived on and work by many of the same and the poor themselves. Yet, where's the popularity on account of the message?
Where're the rock music, smoke, lights, and big video screens? Where's the entertainment? Where are the motivational sermons? Where are the ways to get a promotion or raise at work? Where is the pop psychology? Where's the American Dream or whatever? Well, they aren't here. It isn't because I don't like music. Honest music is great. As for motivation, what inspires you? If you want the stuff that people practice and practice in their delivery techniques they've learned from books and tapes on how to be a motivational speaker, how it that the movement of the Holy Spirit? Jesus said not to do that. I don't do it. I can see why he said not to do it. It's so contrived. As for promotions and raises and such, that's what you get from the prosperity preachers who are really preaching the creed of greed. That's not the message of Jesus. Those preachers are getting their reward in the here and now. They become personally rich in mammon and very poor in the spirit. They hoard it up for self living in luxury while those Jesus said to feed still go hungry in even greater numbers now. The American Dream is built on the backs of the negatively exploited, exactly the people Jesus came to free from bondage. Think about it.
When feeding his lambs and sheep becomes popular, the Christian Commons Project™ will become popular. That will happen when people come to realize that selfishness is the root of all evil. That's what money represents after all. It's a medium of exchange. It isn't designed to be given to the Christian Commons Project™ to be translated into land to grow food for free. That breaks the vicious cycle of money. No, it was designed for the opposite reason, not to bring forth the giving-and-sharing economy of Jesus Christ. We can though do just that — translate money into the very system where it is no longer needed to eat or live under a roof or be clothed, etc. We can break the evil system without any violence at all. Together, we can bring forth, as Jesus called for.
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)