Who’s the Head of Your Church?
The prophet Jeremiah spoke to this doctrine of the Nicolaitanes very succinctly since usurping rule over the people had also occurred in his day. The priests who had turned away from obedience to God and who God no longer considered His priests, had arrogated to themselves authority over the citizens of the nation of Israel as recorded in the following scriptures:
“The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof? Jeremiah 5:31
Again today, this Nicolaitane movement is alive and well and being promoted through the formation of non-profit corporations which are created by the State rather than Jesus and these non-profit organizations are being promoted as the only means of affording both the priests and laity tax free status under the 501.c (3) section of the IRS code. While I’m not an attorney, it would appear that as a Church in this Country you do not need to be a corporation to be tax exempt according to the Constitution. These ministers are arrogating authority to themselves over the laity through means of the legal authority conferred on them by their Corporate State Charter and their ungodly actions are being supported by the false prophets.
Rather than true elders who meet the qualifications of 1st Timothy 3:1-7 having a free hand in preaching and teaching the word of God with equal access to the pulpit for the feeding and welfare of the flock, these qualified elders can and are being legally refused official recognition by means of the Board of Directors and Officers who initially established the non-profit organization according to the Articles of Incorporation sanctioned by the State. Men and women posing as elders, quite apart from the qualifications of 1st Timothy 3:1-7, can however, gain access to the pulpit if they find favor with the legal board of directors. These scripturally unqualified elders can be duly recognized and legally appointed by the legal board of directors through the legal power conferred on them by the State through the Articles of Incorporation.
I was curious as to why the Church found it necessary to incorporate under the laws of the State of their incorporation since it seemed directors and officers of Corporation don’t necessarily have to meet the qualifications for an elder yet they wield legal power over the flock through the commandments of men (i. e. State Law) that cannot at this time be effectively challenged by scripture. So, I went on-line and to my surprise found an article entitled “WOE TO THE CHURCHES: Obtaining Corporation Status (501c3) is Against God” @ http://www.guymalone.com/501c3church.htm This article cited some of the following reasons for the Church to seek corporate status:
- 1. They think they have to.
- 2. They feel it gives them some benefit.
- 3. They think it gives them prestige.
- 4. Asset protection.
- 5. Think it’s the only way gifts are tax deductible.
- 6. Think it’s okay with God.
- 7. They have always done it that way (tradition).
Then the article asked the reader to consider that the word “church” is not meant to refer to any physical building, but refers to the worldwide body of believers in Christ. The word “church” (ecclesia in Greek – called out ones) does not refer to any organization, no matter it’s name or legal status. The author then asks the reader to keep that in mind when considering the following points:
- 1. The Lord is sovereign over His Churches: Jesus is the Head of the Church, not man. Paul compares the special relationship of Christ and His Church to the God given relationship of man and wife. What can be closer or more special than this? Would you bring another person into your marriage to control it with worldly principles? I hope the answer is no. Then why would you bring in a “fictitious entity” no less created by the State and man (i. e. a corporation) to run and regulate something that belongs to the Lord? The relationship with Jesus and His Church belongs to Him alone. He is the head of the Church and as such He governs it with His laws, His principles, and His directions. After all His is our King and is sovereign over His Church. To become a corporation in effect divorces the church from Christ, it’s Head and replaces it with the State.
NOTE: We, as Christians, need to realize what the courts have ruled about corporations and that a corporation has no rights, only privileges granted by the “State”. To become a corporation removes the authority of the Lord over a corporate church and put’s it under bondage to man’s law. According to man, the State is sovereign over it’s Corporations:
1.) “A corporation is a creature of the State. It is presumed to be incorporated for benefit of the public. It receives certain special privileges and franchises and holds them subject to the laws of the State and the limitation of it’s charter. It’s powers are limited by law. It can make no contract not authorized by it’s charter. It’s rights to act as a corporation are only preserved so long as it obeys the laws of it’s creation. There is a reserved right in the legislature to investigate it’s contracts and ascertain if it has exceeded it’s powers” (Hale v. Henkel, 201 U. S. 43)
2.) “[A corporation is] an artificial person or legal entity created by or under the authority of the laws of the State. An association of persons created by statute as a legal entity——–the corporation is distinct from the individuals who comprise it (shareholders)—–Such an entity subsists as a body politic under a special denomination, which is regarded in law as having a personality and existence distinct from that of it’s several members.” Black’s Law Dictionary West Publishing Company, 1991; 6th Edition, page 340
3.) “A corporation derives it’s existence and all it’s powers from the State and, therefore, has only such powers as the State has conferred upon it. Power is used here to mean the legal capacity to execute and fulfill the objects and purposes for which the corporation was created, and the source of it’s power is the charter and the statute under which the corporation was organized.” Len Young Smith and G. Gale Roberson, Smith and Roberson’s Business Law, West Publishing Company, 1966, page 796.
NOTE #1: The objects and purposes for which a corporation, non-profit or otherwise, for which a corporation is formed are expressly stated in it’s articles of incorporation, which delineate in general language the type business activities in which the corporation proposes to engage” Smith and Roberson’s Business Law, West Publishing Company, 1966, page 789
NOTE #2: “Instances of non-profit corporations are educational institutions, athletic clubs, library clubs, fraternities, sororities, hospitals, and organizations which have exclusively a charitable purpose” Smith and Roberson’s Business Law, West Publishing Company, 1966, page 789
NOTE #3: The purpose of the Church is not “charity,” nor is it’s purpose exclusively charitable. Charity should be a function of every Church, but it is certainly not it’s purpose. Offering worship to God, evangelism to the lost, bringing the saints into the unity of the faith are among the Churches exclusive and manifold purposes.
- 2. Jesus Christ should be the undisputed Head of the Church – Why then Incorporate?
1.) Many people for some reason think that the Church has to. This is far from the truth on a few different levels. Here in the United States of America a church does not have to incorporate at all to be recognized as a local body of believers (Not sure why they would want recognition from the State anyway) and/or to be legitimately tax-exempt. I know some of you are thinking “Well, Romans 13 says—“Most of us have been taught that whatever the government says, goes. Wrong! If the government passes a law that interferes or contradicts one of God’s laws we are not bound to follow it. If the government wants you to receive a mark in your forehead or right hand are you going to obey? There are Biblical examples of legitimate disobedience the laws men and/or the decrees of kings such as Daniel’s disobedience to king Darius and the disobedience of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego to the decree of Nebuchadnezzar.
NOTE #1: To think Christians are bound by the laws of men, when it comes to the work of the Kingdom, is just stupid. If this were the case the church in Russia, China, Middle East and other places – if they listened to Romans 13 the way it is being applied now – would never have seen growth. How about the brothers and sisters that smuggled Bibles into the old Soviet Block, China, Cuba, and others? Whose law did they break? Man’s. The local governments. They may be held accountable for their actions by men, they might even lose their lives. Guess what? God will reward them for their actions. They were doing the work of the Kingdom.
NOTE#2: Some in the Church think that the law requires a body of believers to incorporate to be a legal and lawful entity. However, under the Constitution of the United States, a body of believers does not have to incorporate to lawfully carry on Kingdom work or to be tax exempt. The Constitution expressly states: “Congress shall make no law regarding an establishment of religion, or prohibiting free exercise thereof.” (U. S. Constitution, First Amendment). Requiring a Church to incorporate would be making a law establishing a religion which is unconstitutional.
NOTE #3: Some in the Church think that incorporating is the only way a Church can become a tax exempt organization and that donations from members can be tax deductible. According to the Internal Revenue Code, “a church, it’s integrated auxiliaries, and conventions and associations of the church are excluded from taxation.” United States Code, Title 26, 508(c)(1)(A).
Section 503(c) of the Internal Revenue Code provides that churches are not required to apply for recognition of Section 501(c)(3) status in order to be exempt from federal taxation or to receive tax deductible contributions. Churches are automatically exempt from Federal Income Tax, and contributions to churches are deductible by donors and section 170.
The government has no constitutional authority over the Church. It is not allowed to violate the First Amendment protection that the constitution provides. However, the current corrupt and ungodly government has found a way around this by holding out an unbiblical advantage hoping an ignorant clergy person will take the bait and bring the church into voluntary compliance by forming a 501(c)(3) corporation, thus placing the church under the authority of the State.
Once the church has been transformed into a corporation it then becomes subject to control by federal and state governments. In truth, an incorporated church is no longer a church but merely a non-profit organization subject to total control by the government. You will be controlled on who you hire, what you can and cannot preach. Your cannot conflict with public policy nor assault the hearer’s sense of mental well-being, self-esteem, sexual orientation etc.. You can be sued. The IRS prohibits such organizations from “carrying on propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation” (26 USC 501-C-3). This prohibition extends, not only to the endorsement of a political candidate, but also any other attempts to “influence legislation,” including taking a public stand against such government-protected abominations as abortion or homosexuality. Now, the church is discovering that favors from Washington D. C. have strings attached. In this case, the string is a rope that is being used to throttle her once-powerful voice, to squeeze out her very life and, eventually, to hang her by the neck until dead!
NOTE#4: Many of the clergy use and abuse incorporation as a “means” of obtaining and maintaining absolute control over the affairs of the church. Rather than the scripture determining which men are qualified as elders to oversee the well-being of the flock of God, instead, the Articles of Incorporation of an incorporated non-profit organization allow the Board of Directors to legally determine who is a “so-called” elder and who is not. These Directors can spend money anyway they please within the confines of the Articles of Incorporations and they can limit the pulpit to only those whose message agrees with theirs. Incorporation is a means of controlling the church which arrogates decision making power away from the authority of the scripture according to the wisdom of the righteous laws of the kingdom of God to a Board of Directors according to their wisdom under the authority of the Articles of Incorporation of the State.
- 3. What should we do now with respect to incorporated churches?
1.) They became incorporated, become unincorporated.
2.) Talk to your pastor/minister about this important issue.
3.) Rescind your membership in an incorporated church.
4.) Don’t incorporate if you’re now unincorporated.
5.) Find an unincorporated church.
6.) Study your Bible daily.
7.) Pray for the Body of Christ.
These Nicolaitane corporations can gain new members by building attractive facilities and they can maintain their influence over the laity by false prosperity teaching, teaching faith as rights to blessings without corresponding duties, and teaching for commandments the covetousness economic doctrines of men. By means of this judicial misinterpretation of the “establishment clause” of the Constitution regarding freedom of religion the Church has been made vulnerable to the perspective of the confines of a private 501.c (3) non-profit corporate Church campus. This new perspective has reduced the scope of their stewardship regarding the words of the righteous laws of the kingdom of God from a larger public and national responsibility to a smaller private and local Church campus responsibility under the restrictions of a 501.c (3) non-profit corporation whose Articles of Incorporation are sanctioned by the laws of the State rather than the laws of the kingdom of God. Look around in this nation called the United States and behold the results of a Christianity bridled by the laws of the State and Federal governments. Judge for yourself whether our nation is prospering or in decline spiritually, morally, financially, materially, or health-wise.
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