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1,500 Pastors Defy IRS Ban on Preaching Politics

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posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 04:01 PM
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originally posted by: windword
a reply to: Annee

Well, this is only relevant passage to the "did he or did he not exist" argument in this thread.


Then Jesus said to them, "Give back to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's." And they were amazed at him.




Hence the theory that Jesus was an invention by the Flavian Romans designed to encourage the Jews to support, not oppose, Roman rule and pay their taxes.




posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 04:02 PM
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originally posted by: Tangerine

originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Asktheanimals

originally posted by: OccamsRazor04

originally posted by: Tangerine

There's no evidence that Jesus ever lived

That's funny, the history class I took at college in extremely liberal/progressive Massachusetts taught Jesus is historically proven to have existed (as a person).


Thanks. I didn't even want to get started on that argument.
Ask Josephus if they have any questions about his existence.


I've been following the "is there or is there not" a real Jesus debate for about 20 years.

Yes. There was a real man serious researchers believe is the "man of the myth".

You could call him a political agitator. And, yes he was sentenced and put to death.

So yeah, the original guy probably preached politics. But, he wasn't tax exempt.



Prove it. Name one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. That would be contemporaneous documentation (ie. historical evidence).


I have no interest in proving it.

Take it up with the serious researchers I mentioned. Google is your friend.



posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 04:05 PM
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originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Tangerine

originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Asktheanimals

originally posted by: OccamsRazor04

originally posted by: Tangerine

There's no evidence that Jesus ever lived

That's funny, the history class I took at college in extremely liberal/progressive Massachusetts taught Jesus is historically proven to have existed (as a person).


Thanks. I didn't even want to get started on that argument.
Ask Josephus if they have any questions about his existence.


I've been following the "is there or is there not" a real Jesus debate for about 20 years.

Yes. There was a real man serious researchers believe is the "man of the myth".

You could call him a political agitator. And, yes he was sentenced and put to death.

So yeah, the original guy probably preached politics. But, he wasn't tax exempt.



Prove it. Name one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. That would be contemporaneous documentation (ie. historical evidence).


I have no interest in proving it.

Take it up with the serious researchers I mentioned. Google is your friend.


You can't name one researcher who documented one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. Not one. Guess what that makes you?



posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 04:13 PM
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originally posted by: Tangerine

You can't name one researcher who documented one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. Not one. Guess what that makes you?


What part of "I've been following this debate for 20 years" are you missing?

If you've got your links and records filed and cross filed for the last 20 years ------ you're a far better record keeper then I am.

Perhaps you should start a new thread. Or resurrect an old one.

Unless you want to discuss the mythical Jesus' connection to the IRS.



posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 04:16 PM
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originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Tangerine

You can't name one researcher who documented one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. Not one. Guess what that makes you?


What part of "I've been following this debate for 20 years" are you missing?

If you've got your links and records filed and cross filed for the last 20 years ------ you're a far better record keeper then I am.

Perhaps you should start a new thread. Or resurrect an old one.

Unless you want to discuss the mythical Jesus' connection to the IRS.


Twenty years you've spent following this topic and you still can't name one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living? You're making my argument for me. Thanks!



posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 04:57 PM
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originally posted by: Tangerine

originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Tangerine

You can't name one researcher who documented one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. Not one. Guess what that makes you?


What part of "I've been following this debate for 20 years" are you missing?

If you've got your links and records filed and cross filed for the last 20 years ------ you're a far better record keeper then I am.

Perhaps you should start a new thread. Or resurrect an old one.

Unless you want to discuss the mythical Jesus' connection to the IRS.


Twenty years you've spent following this topic and you still can't name one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living? You're making my argument for me. Thanks!



Off your head --- tell me who on ATS was a serious researcher of the 911 Conspiracy 10 years ago (no searching).

I did not say authored, credited, degreed, famous, yada yada.

I said serious researcher. An individual with a specific interest, passion, hobby etc. There's also been authors known to hang out in chat rooms using some silly made up name.

20 years --- many forums and chat rooms. No links. No silly chat room names. Accept it or don't.

Done --- back to NO POLITICS FROM THE PULPIT.



posted on Oct, 16 2014 @ 08:15 PM
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I actually find myself going in a surprising direction here ...

If a church is actually involved in ministerial services to the community, i.e. like feeding the hungry, housing the homeless, caring for the sick ... you know, those things that "Jesus" actually commanded His followers to do ... I wouldn't have any problem at all with them having tax exempt status ... in fact, I think that's what the original justification was.

But, as for anecdotal evidence, since only about 1% of the Christian churches I have ever experienced actually practice any of the actual teachings and commandments of Christ, and are, for the most part, social clubs for the promulgation of hate and false senses of superiority, I think we're probably pretty safe in simply zapping their tax exempt statuses.



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 12:06 AM
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originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Tangerine

originally posted by: Annee

originally posted by: Tangerine

You can't name one researcher who documented one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living. Not one. Guess what that makes you?


What part of "I've been following this debate for 20 years" are you missing?

If you've got your links and records filed and cross filed for the last 20 years ------ you're a far better record keeper then I am.

Perhaps you should start a new thread. Or resurrect an old one.

Unless you want to discuss the mythical Jesus' connection to the IRS.


Twenty years you've spent following this topic and you still can't name one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living? You're making my argument for me. Thanks!



Off your head --- tell me who on ATS was a serious researcher of the 911 Conspiracy 10 years ago (no searching).

I did not say authored, credited, degreed, famous, yada yada.

I said serious researcher. An individual with a specific interest, passion, hobby etc. There's also been authors known to hang out in chat rooms using some silly made up name.

20 years --- many forums and chat rooms. No links. No silly chat room names. Accept it or don't.

Done --- back to NO POLITICS FROM THE PULPIT.



Huh? What does 911 have to do with my comment? My comment was about the total lack of historical evidence for the existence of Jesus. I repeat: Twenty years you've spent following this topic and you still can't name one person who lived when Jesus allegedly lived who wrote that s/he witnessed Jesus living? You're making my argument for me. Thanks!



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 05:36 AM
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Right after he was elected for the first time, Bush gave $140 million to the Taliban on the pretext of encouraging them to not grow heroin poppies. Charity?


down payment for a few box cutters and some fight lessons??
it's amazing how the gov't can find the most overpriced crap to buy!

I would venture to guess that it's not really that worthwhile to debate weather or not jesus existed
either you believe or you don't and more then likely you won't change anyone's minds on the issue by debating it;.

you test the worthiness of the tree by it's fruits
if the fruit is good then the tree is good
if the fruit is bad then the tree is bad.
but I have a tree outside that is good for healing some medical problems if used right while being poisonous if one is not careful
religions tend to be like the tree in my back yard.
and marrying it with politics and religion is the wrong way to use it and usually ends up with very bad results!



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 07:06 AM
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originally posted by: Benevolent Heretic
a reply to: windword

I agree completely! I have no problem with churches preaching politics IF they pay taxes. They have become so active politically, they need to follow the rules or pay the consequences.



Its protected under the constitution and really not subject to the IRS anyway. Besides you don't engage in politics, speech ect subject to tax do you?



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 07:14 AM
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originally posted by: xuenchen
For the sake of clarity, what does the actual IRS rules say about "talking" political issues vs "endorsing" with ads and money and in print?

Or do they not draw any lines?




This is simply an effort to subjugate the churches right to free speech and religion which congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise there off.

This is lefty King George politics again. Why we had a revolution in the first place. The IRS isn't even part of the government.



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 07:53 AM
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a reply to: Logarock

No, you are wrong. The churches, in agreement for having tax exempt status, AREN'T allowed to have political speech in their sermons. It's spelled out RIGHT in the 501(c)3 stipulations. This has nothing to do with freedom of speech and everything to do with a PRIVILEGE that the churches are abusing by endorsing political candidates during their sermons.

No one is restricting their speech. If they want to preach politics, then all they have to do is give up their 501(c)3 status. It's THAT simple. Christians are trying to make a big deal out of this because they think it is a given that they get tax exempt status, but they are wrong. The tax exempt status is a privilege that comes with rules that they have to abide by or they risk losing that status.
edit on 17-10-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 07:59 AM
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I'm well aware that most just use terminology as they see fit these days, without any real relationship to word meaning, but just for the record, let's at least set some standards of veracity:


The term "political left" from its inception in the French Estates General to the current day indicates a belief in social equality rather than social hierarchy not to mention that the Left in all its historical forms has been OPPOSED to monarchial government.

The Internal Revenue Service is a part of the US Department of the Treasury.

Thanks, I feel better now.



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 03:28 PM
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originally posted by: tebyen
Wow; so much misinformation in this thread.

Let's try to clear some of that up, shall we? First we need to understand that there are 29 different forms of 501(c) designations that a non-profit can register under. Each of the 29 are governed by different regulations. There are several that apply in this thread; mainly 501(c) (3), (4), and (5).

The pertinent part of 501(c)(3) is the following:


To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.
You can view the full regulations here.

This clearly prohibits church leaders, charity members, etc to speak on behalf of the charity, church, etc; or from a position of leadership of said charity in a politically active manner. Discussing political issues, and why certain stances are immoral is one thing; urging a particular action is another.

Next is 501(c)(4). From the IRS regulations:


Seeking legislation germane to the organization's programs is a permissible means of attaining social welfare purposes. Thus, a section 501(c)(4) social welfare organization may further its exempt purposes through lobbying as its primary activity without jeopardizing its exempt status. An organization that has lost its section 501(c)(3) status due to substantial attempts to influence legislation may not thereafter qualify as a section 501(c)(4) organization. In addition, a section 501(c)(4) organization that engages in lobbying may be required to either provide notice to its members regarding the percentage of dues paid that are applicable to lobbying activities or pay a proxy tax. For more information, see Lobbying Issues .


This is where groups like Planned Parenthood comes in. Their main branch is a 501(c)(3). This is the where everything done to help the community is managed, programs setup, etc. No one from Planned Parenthood speaks from a position of authority for/or against a particular candidate or acts in a political manner in order to further their goals. They have Planned Parenthood Action Fund, which is a 501(c)(4) group, for such things.

Now unions fall under 501(c)(5). They too are allowed political activities.


Seeking legislation germane to the labor or agricultural organization's programs is recognized as a permissible means of attaining its exempt purposes. Thus, a section 501(c)(5) organization may further its exempt purposes through lobbying as its primary activity without jeopardizing its exempt status. However, a section 501(c)(5) organization that engages in lobbying may be required to either provide notice to its members regarding the percentage of dues paid that are applicable to lobbying activities or pay a proxy tax. The exempt purposes of a labor or agricultural organization do not include direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. A section 501(c)(5) labor or agricultural organization may engage in some political activities, however, so long as that is not its primary activity. However, any expenditures it makes for political activities may be subject to tax under section 527(f).
You can read it in full here.

The main point of all of this is to point out that while there are many 501(c) programs out there that do indeed get involved in politics, only those that file as 501(C)(3) are forbidden from doing so without risking their tax exempt status. As a pastor myself, I fully support this. No one should use their position of authority to try to coerce others into voting in the way the authority figure thinks is best. Urge the people to vote, yes. Urge them to study the issues and come to an informed conclusion, yes. Provide them with moral guidance, yes. Tell them who to vote for? Hell no. We get enough of that from politicians. We don't need it form the people who are supposed to be helping to protect their souls.


Pastor...with all due respect. I understand the law and thank you for providing the details in such a manner. And while I'm not religious, I believe religion has a place. I don't personally believe in a traditional God, but I also sent my children to church to learn about religion.

How can a preacher teach the morals of the Bible, the beliefs in what is right and wrong without pointing out those who don't follow them? The Bible is filled with example after example of individuals who did the right thing, and those who chose the wrong. They are named, described and dissected to inform followers of why something is right or wrong. How do you propose doing the same to your followers, in today's world, without pointing out examples of people who are against your beliefs? And let me expand upon that...there aren't simply people against your beliefs...there are people that HATE you for them. I watch society fall farther and farther, lowering the bar of what is acceptable and to what goals we should morally aim going lower and lower. Some religions are protected (Islam) and others are having war waged against them.

Today, everyone seems to believe that everyone else must accept them for what they are, what they do, without judging them morally. But in order to tell a group of people who are at church to learn and worship, don't you have to be able to say "...and John Smith is an example of an individual that doesn't support our religion or beliefs because...".



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 04:20 PM
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originally posted by: WeAreAWAKE

originally posted by: tebyen
Wow; so much misinformation in this thread.

Let's try to clear some of that up, shall we? First we need to understand that there are 29 different forms of 501(c) designations that a non-profit can register under. Each of the 29 are governed by different regulations. There are several that apply in this thread; mainly 501(c) (3), (4), and (5).

The pertinent part of 501(c)(3) is the following:


To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.
You can view the full regulations here.

This clearly prohibits church leaders, charity members, etc to speak on behalf of the charity, church, etc; or from a position of leadership of said charity in a politically active manner. Discussing political issues, and why certain stances are immoral is one thing; urging a particular action is another.

Next is 501(c)(4). From the IRS regulations:


Seeking legislation germane to the organization's programs is a permissible means of attaining social welfare purposes. Thus, a section 501(c)(4) social welfare organization may further its exempt purposes through lobbying as its primary activity without jeopardizing its exempt status. An organization that has lost its section 501(c)(3) status due to substantial attempts to influence legislation may not thereafter qualify as a section 501(c)(4) organization. In addition, a section 501(c)(4) organization that engages in lobbying may be required to either provide notice to its members regarding the percentage of dues paid that are applicable to lobbying activities or pay a proxy tax. For more information, see Lobbying Issues .


This is where groups like Planned Parenthood comes in. Their main branch is a 501(c)(3). This is the where everything done to help the community is managed, programs setup, etc. No one from Planned Parenthood speaks from a position of authority for/or against a particular candidate or acts in a political manner in order to further their goals. They have Planned Parenthood Action Fund, which is a 501(c)(4) group, for such things.

Now unions fall under 501(c)(5). They too are allowed political activities.


Seeking legislation germane to the labor or agricultural organization's programs is recognized as a permissible means of attaining its exempt purposes. Thus, a section 501(c)(5) organization may further its exempt purposes through lobbying as its primary activity without jeopardizing its exempt status. However, a section 501(c)(5) organization that engages in lobbying may be required to either provide notice to its members regarding the percentage of dues paid that are applicable to lobbying activities or pay a proxy tax. The exempt purposes of a labor or agricultural organization do not include direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. A section 501(c)(5) labor or agricultural organization may engage in some political activities, however, so long as that is not its primary activity. However, any expenditures it makes for political activities may be subject to tax under section 527(f).
You can read it in full here.

The main point of all of this is to point out that while there are many 501(c) programs out there that do indeed get involved in politics, only those that file as 501(C)(3) are forbidden from doing so without risking their tax exempt status. As a pastor myself, I fully support this. No one should use their position of authority to try to coerce others into voting in the way the authority figure thinks is best. Urge the people to vote, yes. Urge them to study the issues and come to an informed conclusion, yes. Provide them with moral guidance, yes. Tell them who to vote for? Hell no. We get enough of that from politicians. We don't need it form the people who are supposed to be helping to protect their souls.


Pastor...with all due respect. I understand the law and thank you for providing the details in such a manner. And while I'm not religious, I believe religion has a place. I don't personally believe in a traditional God, but I also sent my children to church to learn about religion.

How can a preacher teach the morals of the Bible, the beliefs in what is right and wrong without pointing out those who don't follow them? The Bible is filled with example after example of individuals who did the right thing, and those who chose the wrong. They are named, described and dissected to inform followers of why something is right or wrong. How do you propose doing the same to your followers, in today's world, without pointing out examples of people who are against your beliefs? And let me expand upon that...there aren't simply people against your beliefs...there are people that HATE you for them. I watch society fall farther and farther, lowering the bar of what is acceptable and to what goals we should morally aim going lower and lower. Some religions are protected (Islam) and others are having war waged against them.

Today, everyone seems to believe that everyone else must accept them for what they are, what they do, without judging them morally. But in order to tell a group of people who are at church to learn and worship, don't you have to be able to say "...and John Smith is an example of an individual that doesn't support our religion or beliefs because...".


Churches CAN do that. They just can't get a tax exemption if they do it. They have to choose and you can see which they choose. Bottom line, it's all about the collection plate.



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 09:09 PM
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Depending on the way the question is asked, between 75 and 85% of Americans regularly identify themselves as Christian.

Yet, I hear daily that (from Christians) that Christians are somehow persecuted, victimized, and hated by seemingly everyone around them.

This doesn't make any sense at all using any math I know.



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 09:21 PM
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originally posted by: Gryphon66
Depending on the way the question is asked, between 75 and 85% of Americans regularly identify themselves as Christian.

Yet, I hear daily that (from Christians) that Christians are somehow persecuted, victimized, and hated by seemingly everyone around them.

This doesn't make any sense at all using any math I know.



you know how Christians like to persecute other faiths? they do it to their own to. "we believe in the same book but you take it differently to me so # you"



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 09:35 PM
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a reply to: orgncpndmc

But Christians are the victims! Everyone is against them! The whole world if you listen to what some of them say.

I just don't understand how that could work, after all, 3 out of 4 people they meet everyday are fellow Christians.



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 11:20 PM
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originally posted by: SlapMonkey
I'm not fan of religion, especially the fact that they think they should be tax-exempt considering the trend of mega churches and someof the salaries their pastors and administrators make, but what most bothersome about this is their hypocrisy concerning taxes.



After Jesus and his disciples arrived in Capernaum, the collectors of the two-drachma tax came to Peter and asked, "Doesn't your teacher pay the temple tax?"

"Yes, he does," he replied...(blah blah blah...they paid their taxes)




Then the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. "Teacher," they said, "we know you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren't swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are. Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?"

But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, "You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Show me the coin used for paying the tax." They brought him a denarius, and he asked them, "Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?"

"Caesar's," they replied.

Then he said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's."


If they worship Jesus, and paying taxes was good enough for Jesus, why isn't it good enough for churches? Just another organized-religion hypcrisy...


First of all that is taxes paid by PEOPLE, not a church. Last I checked people who belong to a church pay taxes still. Maybe you can show me what church has members that are exempt from taxation?



posted on Oct, 17 2014 @ 11:34 PM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: Logarock

No, you are wrong. The churches, in agreement for having tax exempt status, AREN'T allowed to have political speech in their sermons. It's spelled out RIGHT in the 501(c)3 stipulations. This has nothing to do with freedom of speech and everything to do with a PRIVILEGE that the churches are abusing by endorsing political candidates during their sermons.


Maybe you want to look at the history of it. Originally they COULD endorse political candidates. Lyndon B. Johnson (The Great Society Democrat) changed the rules out of retribution for Pastors speaking out against him. His Union buddies of course got to keep their politicking.

So maybe you can answer what no one else is willing to, why should Pastors/Churches lose their tax exempt status but not Labor Unions?




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