In our article titled Lordship Church vs. 501 (C)3 I mentioned that when a “church enters into covenant with the United States Government as a 501 (c)3 incorporation it voluntarily takes on various entanglements and restrictions.”
Occasionally someone will follow my recommendation in that article and talk to their “Pastor” about the issue. On that rare occasion the “Pastor will usually reply with something like “it doesn’t stop me from doing anything”. But unfortunately, regardless of how well meaning they may be, those “Pastors” are either compromising, being dishonest, in denial or ignorant.
Examples of how being a corporation under the state’s authority can call a “church” in to question.
In the following video you will hear of a Vietnamese Pastor who came to America as one of the original “boat people”. He became a Pastor and innocently registered his church as I am sure he was advised to do.
The churches in this video had compromised their standing by becoming a state sponsored corporation 501(c)3 thus placing themselves under the jurisdiction of the state. The Houston, Texas Mayor undoubtedly took advantage of that position to take action against this and other Houston Pastors. After a lot of time, money and other resources were spent, by Christians all over the country, the mayor withdrew her subpoena. But what about next time? Will the issue be pressed to the fullest extent? How much time and expense will need to be committed to the defense and will it work?
Not long ago some dear Christians moved from Russia to Oregon and became U.S. Citizens. They wanted to start a church and so they sought the advice of an attorney. What did he tell them to do? The same thing they were forced to do in Russia; register their church with the government. They declined and began a Lordship Church.
501(c)3 Legal Facts
Barbara Ketay, a lawyer who is well versed on the subject, wrote the following:
“O.K. Pastors, Evangelists, Missionaries, Deacons, Trustees, Elders… listen up! Let’s stop all the hocus-pocus, the illusions, the scams, the fairy-tales and the outright lies regarding what the 501(c)(3) incorporated church is and is not. For a change, let’s deal with facts. For those of you who don’t understand “facts,” in the legal arena, facts are used and are supported by documented evidence which would be admissible in a legitimate court of law. Facts are not hyperbole! [i.e. exaggeration]”
Ketay goes on to list facts about what a 501(c)3 church corporation is by lawful state definition:
- The creator of a corporation is the State.
- The State is the sole authority and sovereign head over the corporation.
- The corporation is subject to the laws of the State which limits its powers.
- The corporation has no constitutionally protected rights.
- The corporation is an artificial person.
- The corporation submits to a State Charter declaring it is a creature of the State.
- The corporation is created for the benefit of the public.
- The corporation is a State franchise.
- The corporation is a privilege granted by the State.
-Barbara Ketay, “The 501(c)(3) Incorporated Church: The Real Truth,” Biblical Law Center, retrieved July 23, 2012, [http://www.gracealoneca.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/the_real_truth_of_501c3.pdf]
Legal Encumberments placed upon 501(c)3 “Churches”
If you are part of an organization that you think is a church, it is probably actually a 501(c)3 state sponsored corporation. That means your “church” is actually a corporation under state authority rather than God’s authority. That means that the state can and does regulate what the corporation is, does and says. Of course the state allows the “church” to do most of the things it wants (most churches and Pastors are content with being restricted) but, according to the list above, here are some practical applications of a 501(c)3 covenant:
- The creator of your church is the State.
- The State is the sole authority and sovereign head over your church.
- Your church is subject to the laws of the State which limits its powers.
- Your church has no constitutionally protected rights.
- Your church is an artificial person.
- Your church submits to a State Charter declaring it is a creature of the State.
- Your church is created for the benefit of the public.
- Your church is a State franchise.
- Your church is a privilege granted by the State.
Spiritual encumberments placed upon 501(c)3 “Churches”
And then of course, along with the above, the 501(c)3 state sponsored corporation must comply with a myriad of other restrictions that are completely left to the discretion of the licensor.
Thank you to EX Ministries for providing this video
Following is an excerpt from the video above:
Congressman Emmanuel Cleaver: “We are going to, first of all, equip them with the information they (“churches”) need to know about what they can say, and what they cannot say in the church that would violate their 501c3 status with the IRS. In fact, we’re going to have the IRS administrator there, we’re going to have the attorney general… there, we’re going to have the lawyers organization from around the country, the ACLU, all giving ministers guidance on what they can and cannot do.”
And so if these compromises are acceptable to you, and the “Pastor” of your “church”, then simply continue doing what you are doing. On the other hand, if you would rather support a church that looks only to Jesus / Yeshua as it’s head then you might want to reconsider. Click here