Atheist non-profit group colludes with IRS to crack down on churches

Yesterday, I had a nice lunch at the Golden Corral with my Senior Pastor, Scott Eynon and Youth Pastor, Tim Gray. Our family has belonged to Community Christian Church for ten years, and we’ve been truly blessed by the messages and the programs which have greatly improved the spiritual development of our two daughters, Aubrey and Austen. So as we sat there and did some serious chow down time at the GC, it pained me to know our Internal Revenue Service (IRS) now has its sights on the churches in America — well, with the exception of churches like Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s in Chicago of course.

As reported by The Blaze, “The Internal Revenue Service has settled a lawsuit brought by a secular activist group, reportedly agreeing to adopt standards for determining and investigating whether churches and religious organizations have violated restrictions on political activity. The precise terms of the settlement are still unclear, as is how the IRS will amend its policies to enforce tax law on churches in a way that is palatable to the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF), which has long decried “rogue political churches.”

My immediate question is who is this group, Freedom From Religion Foundation, that they can influence IRS policy? And who are they to demand tax law be made palatable to them? What in my God’s name has happened to the First Amendment right of freedom of religion and the free exercise thereof?

And I suppose the group FFRF gets to be the adjudicators of what they deem as acceptable messages from the pulpit? Imagine this: the Bible addresses choosing life, what if a minister delivers a pro-life message — will FFRF “Brown Shirts” report this to the IRS for punishment? Or what happens if a pastor delivers a message on traditional families — one man and one woman — is that church leader hauled off before the new collective group of atheist Sadducees and Pharisees? And you can bet that churches in agreement with FFRF’s progressive socialist secular humanist agenda will be just fine.

This represents just another instance of the “War on Christians.

What then is the difference between ISIS demanding Christians pay a subjugation tax, a jizya, and the persecution of FFRF with increased tax punishments? In my humble assessment, none. This is precisely why we must be concerned about the IRS under the progressive socialist Obama administration’s purview. It is an IRS that uses its power against deemed political opposition and has become a completely politicized agency — just like the Department of Justice.

The Blaze reports that “the core of the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s lawsuit is the Johnson Amendment, a controversial IRS code added in 1954 that precludes nonprofit organizations — churches included — from engaging in campaign activity. “FFRF was asking that the Johnson Amendment be enforced against churches. The IRS has been enforcing the Johnson Amendment against churches since it was passed by Congress in 1954,” Erik Stanley, an attorney at Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative legal firm, told The Blaze. “The agency took a brief break from enforcing the law against churches in 2009 after its procedures for auditing churches was declared unlawful by a federal district court in Minnesota.”

Mr. Stanley stated, “Every American should fear an IRS that uses its vast power to target, threaten, and punish political opponents,” he added. “Churches have succumbed to this regime of fear for the last 60 years under the Johnson Amendment, which was added to the tax code specifically to silence speech a politician didn’t like.” There’s also the fear that the IRS might have new policies and procedures regarding churches that have not yet been released to the public — a potential factor that could lead to “unequal enforcement of the law,” Stanley said.” He added, “Our goal is to have the Johnson Amendment declared unconstitutional and to restore a pastor’s right to speak freely from the pulpit.”

However, what I always find interesting is how liberal Democrats go into certain churches and do all the campaigning they want. Is there some kind of duplicitous hypocrisy going on? What am I thinking – of course not. There’s no hypocrisy on the Left. Although I just have to note the FFRF has tax-exempt status as a 501(c)3.

Let us not forget the Pilgrims came to America and landed at Plymouth Rock because of religious persecution in England from the State. What a sad day that we’ve now turned back the clock of time and all these years later, this is the situation. I pray my pastors will not have to succumb to special interest state sponsored religious censorship in my lifetime — but groups like Freedom from Religion Foundation appear — shall I say — hell bent on doing exactly that.

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56 Comments on "Atheist non-profit group colludes with IRS to crack down on churches"

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Jack
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golden corral should be condemned

Dave the Retired Marine MSgt
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Dave the Retired Marine MSgt

Dam right! Serving good food at reasonable prices is just downright anti American.

Jack
Guest

you should be ashamed of yourself. the food there is terrible and places like golden corral are contributing to obesity problem we have in this country. now drop and give me 20, maggot!!! lol

Dave the Retired Marine MSgt
Guest
Dave the Retired Marine MSgt

I just got back from my 3 mile run and did 50, okay? Actually, I never ate at Golden Corral. Do they serve goat?

😉

Jack
Guest

nice work. Goat would probably be healthier than some of the stuff they serve there.

The HoG
Guest

Maybe Crow?

disqus_iV2F8c6S6z
Guest

Again, probably still lower in fat.

The HoG
Guest

😉

GinnyLee
Guest

If the churches would only recognize that they are already “exempt” from
taxation, they would not cow-tow to the feds. The only thing that the
IRS threatens is the revocation of the 501c-3 status, which is not a
requirement by law.

The churches were established long before the IRS, and because of the 1st Amendment never were supposed to be taxed.

Reading Comprehension
Guest
Reading Comprehension

I am so glad you posted this. It is what I think every time this issue comes up!

GinnyLee
Guest

Keep saying it. People can research it, if they don’t believe it.
The Churches of Jesus should never cower and fret over any ‘money’ issues.

majorwiblit
Guest

Church tax exemption means that we all drop our money in the collection boxes, whether we go to church or not and whether we are interested in the church or not.
It is systematic and complete robbery, from which none of us escapes. ~E. Haldeman-Julius, The Church Is a Burden, Not a Benefit, In Social Life

tulet
Guest

What concerns me most is what churches have done with Tax exemption today as opposed to years ago. Churches have taken a simple law and made an abomination of it. A lot of churches dabble in politics(against tax exemption), and buy land holdings that are not for (Church) use but more for the Leader or owners of the church. How can a pastor live in a Luxury 12,000 square foot mansion and be exempt from taxes?

W M
Guest

If the house is provided by the church, the pastor can’t take it with them (sell it/own it) when they leave. The next pastor moves in and lives there until they leave. The Catholic church provides housing for nuns, monks, and priests. They don’t own the property.

TychaBrahe
Guest

In Los Angeles the Catholic church owns apartment buildings, office buildings, and parking lots. What church business is conducted in a parking lot?

tulet
Guest

Yes, as honest churches go. Many large churches, say Scientology, do not let others in the mansions. Many, many pastors retire into the home that is caretaken by the church also. All tax free.

majorwiblit
Guest

“The divorce between Church and State ought to be absolute.
It ought to be so absolute that no Church property anywhere, in any state or in the nation, should be exempt from equal taxation; for if you exempt the property of any church organization, to that extent you impose a tax upon the whole community.”
― James A. Garfield

William
Guest

Poor, poor persecuted Christians. /sarc

Dana Davis
Guest

If they’re going to enforce that then they better also enforce the same against labor unions, which are also 501Cs, and regularly violate law prohibiting political support with membership dollars.

urbanvrwcmom
Guest

If the FFRF people want religion completely out of the public arena, they should be consistent about it by removing the secular humanist religion from public schools. In the 1960 SCOTUS decision, Torcaso V. Watkins, Secular Humanism was declared a religion. Its adherents refer to it as multiculturalism, social justice, progressivism, etc. to circumvent SH’s religious status. You can read more about it in James Hitchcock’s “What is Secular Humanism?”.

Brendan
Guest

Secular humanism is not taught in schools.

urbanvrwcmom
Guest

Yes it is; different names are used for it. I went to Detroit Public Schools, but I’m not dumb. The attempt to render me as such via dumbing down was an epic fail.

Brendan
Guest

Can you recall where in the curriculum you were taught that there is no God?
How did they teach you that?

Fresh Cliches
Guest

If “secular humanism is a religion”, pray tell:

What deity is worshiped?
What is/are the holy book(s)?
What prayers/invocations are made?

What hymns/anthems are sung?

TerryinFL
Guest

As a fan of the Col’s, I’ve been lurking for some time now and thought the above mentioned was worthy of adding what showed up in my email this A.M.. There is option for a church to function from under the thumb of IRS being offered by Pastor Chuck Baldwin and can be reviewed and/or printed at either NewsWithViews.com or http://www.newswithviews.com/baldwin/baldwin816.htm

Eric Domejean
Guest

Tax the dead beats.

The HoG
Guest

Is there just a possibility that the “church” is unhappy because the Atheists beat them to the punch? Let’s be fair, it’s time for the government to stop subsidizing the religious community. Make them pay their fair share of taxes, including that Atheist “non-profit”.

W M
Guest
Churches open and lead most of the food closets and homeless shelters across the nation. They manage programs that offer charity payments for utility bills that have shut off notices for people who can’t pay them. Churches provide disaster relief and the volunteers to carry out the work. They provide free clothing to people in need. They provide tents and sleeping bags to homeless people. They provide supervised housing programs for homeless who suffer from mental illness or addictions, and to homeless families. Most of the volunteers of Habitat for Humanity are Christians, and the man who created HFH, President… Read more »
The HoG
Guest

The point is that NO organization, business, charity, church or individual should be exempted from paying their fair share of taxes. Once they pay their fair share, they can donate as much as they want, to any cause.

That’s why we need the “Fair Tax”. Everybody is taxed upon the amount they spend, regardless of their income level.

Max Casey
Guest

One could say that churches need to pony up, but in reality, their money comes not from commerce, but from already taxed dollars of its constituents, so why would they 1) need a legal structure or 2) need to pay taxes at all? This article shouldn’t be blaming “Atheists” for attacking the churches and tax code, they should be blaming statists for it. Atheism has nothing to do with this agenda, it is just being used as a cloak to hide the rampant statist tyranny gaining ground in America.

Brendan
Guest
They sound like a watchdog group using the power of the courts to make sure that government agencies do their job. And investigating the tax exempt status of any religious organization (Christian, Muslim, Jewish, whatever) is part of the job… and not an attack on freedom of religion. The law is pretty simple. Religious groups get to be tax exempt so long as they stay out of politics. Occasionally, there are complaints brought forward and an investigation is called for to see if an organization is doing political activity while trying to hide behind a religious group to avoid paying… Read more »
Earl Lee
Guest

Wow…I find it amazing that BIGOTS go to church!

Dave the Retired Marine MSgt
Guest
Dave the Retired Marine MSgt

It would appear that the churches don’t object to their “offerings”. So then .. which is more hypocritical? Bigots, or the churches they attend?

Rafael X
Guest

Muslim bigots use religion why wouldn’t Christian bigots.

cooderhole
Guest

The attack on Christianity is real.

Brendan
Guest

Nonsense.
No one is forcing churches to be closed or changing what you preach in them… and no one is telling you that you can’t be Christian.

You are, however, being prevented from forcing your religion on others.
That is not an attack.
Having to leave other people alone is not an attack against you.

bhops1965
Guest

You poor christians in the US, under so many attacks by the godless heathens…..having to abide by the separation of church and state concept…. how do you cope?? Get real – if you want to know what actual christian persecution is – read about it with respect to the middle east, Afghanistan, etc. Stop whinning about non-existent christian persecution in the US.

disqus_iV2F8c6S6z
Guest

I don’t think Christians in the US are trying to downplay the plight of other Christians around the world; we’re trying to avoid it getting to that point in this country.

bhops1965
Guest

Talk about paranoia … With 85% of the country Christian? You have to be joking.

Philanthropussy
Guest

No, that’s FOX’s paranoia campaign they pull out every Christmas.

W M
Guest

The leaders of FFRF are mostly Jewish, as are most of their members. They go around nailing Santa Claus skeltons to crosses for children to see at Christmas time. Look it up. They did this. They aren’t about the first amendment–they are a hate group.

TychaBrahe
Guest

I love the smell of anti-semitism in the morning.

Fresh Cliches
Guest
“It was the belief of all sects at one time that the establishment of Religion by law, was right & necessary; that the true religion ought to be established in exclusion of every other; and that the only question to be decided was which was the true religion. The example of Holland proved that a toleration of sects, dissenting from the established sect, was safe & even useful. The example of the Colonies, now States, which rejected religious establishments altogether, proved that all Sects might be safely & advantageously put on a footing of equal & entire freedom…. We are… Read more »
Philanthropussy
Guest

Two things you got wrong- the IRS under Geo Bush went after All St Episcopal
Church on 2004. And freedom of religion covers those who have no affiliation with a religion, too.

bhops1965
Guest

Under a strict interpretation of separation of church and state, the gov’t is giving religion a subsidy by giving them a tax exemption. We should all form our own religion, treat our home as a place of worship and get a tax exemption.

oldejack
Guest

http://dudeism.com/ordination/
All you need is a couple of “members” and a scheduled service.
In some states church property, such as parsonages, is exempt from property taxes as well.

William556
Guest

To a liberal, the First Amendment applies only to cursing in public, wearing your pants around your knees, vulgar music, pornography, and screaming left wing slogans and threats. Anything else will be banned.

Brendan
Guest

As long as you marginalize liberals as such absurd caricatures, you will never beat them.

Tom Sealey
Guest

If only it were true that Obama was a progressive socialist. Furthermore, why would a political doctrine that espouses equality be shunned by a Christian?

David Blakeley
Guest

The litigation should ensure that the IRS will now resume enforcing the law,
and go after churches which abuse their tax-exempt privilege by
attempting to illegally influence the outcome of elections. Otherwise,
churches will become unaccountable PACs, congregations could turn into
political wards, and donations to the collection box could be used for
political purposes. FFRF’s litigation will help safeguard our democratic
election process.

Nicole
Guest

If churches can have their say in public schools and federal law, then they should not be tax exempt.

republic
Guest

As a side notice, the Dream of ’16 will not let healthcare against religious objections stand. This means the land will not be ignoring the rights of the people in regard to not obeying false law. View AmericaIdea for the 2016 Dream Candidate.

aemoreira81
Guest

Having read the actual settlement…if this does come to pass, it would not be because of this agreement…which only covered electioneering as defined by Section 501(c)(3) . Title 26 of the US Code.

Politically Constipated
Guest
While I believe there is animus towards Christians, I don’t see this as a bad thing. This is a fair rule if applied equally. However, given the current track record of the IRS, I think there is a systemic dysfunction in the leadership that is all too willing to undermine the neutrality of the IRS in favor of political ideology. The bigger picture here is that a failure to apply the law equally will have the real possibility to effect a backlash where the IRS and these laws are modified in a ways not favoring the vision of groups like… Read more »
nathan
Guest

Anyone can start their own Religion these days, so there goes all the credibility if they ever had any to begin with ?

I say we start forcing people to be re-educated.

Education over Superstition !!!!!!

Don'tspyonme
Guest

What happens to two lesbians on a deserted island