Saturday, January 12, 2008

GOVERNMENT ATTACKS ON CHURCHES - HERE WE GO AGAIN PART 1

My wife mentioned to me that she heard from her mother that Creflo Dollar was under investigation by the government.  This is naturally intrigued and I wondered what the government was up to this time.  I sort of figured, but I wanted to research it out for myself. What I found was that Senator Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, had begun an investigation late last year into not only Creflo Dollar’s ministry, but five others too.  The other ministries are Kenneth Copeland, Joyce Meyer, Paula White, Bishop Eddie Long, and Benny Hinn.  According to Senator Grassley’s website, he is conducting this investigation after “complaints from the public and news coverage regarding certain practices at six ministries.”  I would say that if the truth were known it was 99.9% (liberal) news coverage and 0.01% public.  Just how many people actually contact their Congressman about ANYTHING??  The article on Senator Grassley’s website doesn’t offer much detail, naturally.  Anytime we’re in danger of losing more of our freedom, isn’t it interesting how politicians keep us in the dark until it’s too late?  Anyway, I did a brief investigation into the investigation.  I had to travel to the FOX News website for more complete information.  FOX News’ report quotes Senator Grassley as saying, “The allegations involve governing boards that aren’t independent and allow generous salaries and housing allowances and amenities such as private jets and Rolls Royces.”  Allegations from where?  From whom?  Senator Grassley, of course, doesn’t say, but if this isn’t an attack on Christian ministries, then these “allegations” must be from some heavy duty supporters (donors) of Senator Grassley.  Do you think for one second that you could make a phone call to your Congressman, and actually expect an investigation, or anything for that matter, to happen?  In the VERY NEXT QUOTE, Senator Grassley says, “I don’t want to conclude there’s a problem . . .”  Political double-talk.  “ . . . but I have an obligation to donors and the taxpayers to find out more.”  OK, so we’re not smart enough to determine what ministries we, AS INDIVIDUALS, are legitimate and to which WE CHOOSE to donate.  Not surprising, since government is very elitist in nature, and therefore doesn’t hold us in very high regard.  Government has the attitude that it knows better how to take care of us than we do.Newsflash, Washington, NOT TRUE.

 

This type of investigation is unprecedented.  According to this same article by FOX News, “experts also say it stands out as an unusual case of the government probing the inner workings of religious organizations.”  It certainly does stand out.  In the past, such investigations were conducted by the IRS either directly or by referrals from Congress.  This appears to be one way of stepping up the attack by our government on Christian organizations.  The attacks on Christians and Christian organizations by the government has been going on for years.  One example of this has been through the income tax system in an attempt to cut off donations.  The IRS tried this by eliminating the ability to list donations on anything but their longest tax return forms.  Charitable contributions appeared on less complicated forms in years past, but were eliminated over a period of years one by one.  Note something else here:  you notice that Senator Grassley chose six of the ministries that do the most good here and abroad?  Most of these ministries are world-wide in nature, and the others support mission work.  This includes aid to starving and needy people here and in other countries.  Coincidence?  Government doesn’t really like for the private sector, or the religious sector to do anything better than it does. 

9 comments:

bhbner2him said...

I honestly have mixed feeling about this.  It is historical fact that as some ministries grow and flurish,some fall prey to greed and pride just like any human can.  Of that list, two ministries I have never heard of.  One, has stated things in the past that greatly concern me.  And one to me is nothing short of a shyster.  That leaves one that I have knowledge of that I have heard nothing from that concerns me or alarms me.  

Yet, on the other hand, at one point some of the disciples reported to Jesus others doing things in his name.  And he told them not to stop them.  

Barbara

christiniareid said...

Cool... And as long as christians are doing EVERYTHING to glorify God, God will come through and those who love him.
His,
Laura

wwfbison said...

It amazes me a Senator would open this can of worms.  I say this only because of the recent hallabaloo in Pennsylvania about the money & perks our lawmakers are raking in personally.  If I were on the receiving end of this "investigation" I believe I would like to review the Senators records and well as other lawmakers in the state to see just what they are reaping.

While I don't believe the majority of Christian groups are charletons you must admit there have been a few in the past.  If and I repeat IF a group is bilking the followers out of money while living a lavish lifestyle and giving nothing in return, I do feel they need to be punished, to me that is reprehensible behavior.

I'll be interested in seeing where all of this leads.
Lisa

ma24179 said...

It's sad. Eventually, there will be no churches left to investigate....-Missy

queeniemart said...

one of my friends LOVES Benny Hinn. I think that senator could find a better way to waste our tax dollars than try to rail road a man of God.

lisa

tschuckman said...

Kirk,
I recently read something disturbing about the Homeland Security using SWAT teams to break into houses and seize children of known 'Constitutionalists' in the state of CO and elsewhere.   The definition of these Christian defenders of our Constitution best describes me ..LOL !  The U.S. is headed toward a non-Christian, one world Gov't entity that is plain to see.

Tom Schuckman

lifesabench6 said...

Hi Dirk- I had a nice response written out, but for some reason it just got deleted!!! I hate when that happens.  Anyway, I agree here, although I have to admit, I never really thought much of Benny Hinn- but that's just my opinion.  Joyce Meyer has helped me and millions others though.  It's ironic to me that the people for separation are probably cheering this news- but it's a blatant intrusion of government poking into church business- which I believe the founders were totally against.  It's also ironic how a pastor who will preach against topics such as abortion and gay issues, are guarenteed to  have a nice friendly visit from the IRS- yet a liberal politician can go give a speech at a church, but you could hear crickets chirruping over the response there.  It's going to get worse for Bible Believing Christians everywhere here on out, and the USA is not going to be immune from it.  God Bless you Dirk- keep up the excellent posts!  I know you visit me regular, but if I could plug No apologies right now for anyone interested, I'm doing an archived series oon Bible prophecies about the end times right now- I just started, and I really believe that political, world wide and social issues are being ripped right from the Bible right now.  Thank you Dirk.  If you don't want to have me plug my journal here, don't worry about it- jsut delete this comment!  God Bless!! ;- )  Carolyn

thatboyaintright said...

There have been Pretenders since the Book of Acts when Simon the Sorcerer wanted to use God making Big Time Money. And the warnings about those seeking to be wealthy are in the pastoral epistles. Jude really blasts the [i]Hucksters of the Word[/i].

So it is no surprise that today we have people who prey on the faithful to garner wealth & steal. Peter Popov comes to mind as he used radio transmissions to get his "Word of the Lord."

When Senator Grassley began his insquirey into those Health & Wealth preachers, you can imagine the weeping, wailing & gnashing of teeth from some folks. Others see the gov't encroachment on faith & say the gov't should butt out.

I don't think anyone wants gov't control over their own religion (though many waffle when it comes to condoing control over other's religion), but this is not about gov't control of religion. It is about tax laws. When Pretenders use faith as an excuse to abuse the tax law, the gov't does have the right to investigate. Being tax exempt is not an excuse to claim a bona fide faith in order to steal from people. Legalized theft is still theft.

thatboyaintright said...

The danger, of course, is that the gov't may overstep its bounds. Granted, it is a danger.

Grassley is a Baptist, while most (though not all) of the targeted TV preachers proclaim a rather Pentecostal version of the gospel. Despite Copeland's friendship with Baptist preacher-turned-politician and current presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, the probe is now being framed i[url="http://www.desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2008802160336"]n some circles as a Baptist effort to make Pentecostals look bad.[/url]

For too many years, too many preachers have avoided taxes or hidden shady dealings behind a religious facade or through tricks such as labeling tax-due income as "love gifts." Can you imagine what words old Amos or Micah would have for preachers who live large by selling twisted theology to those who have least?

Grassley, to his credit, is asking questions that need to be asked. The measure of resistance he gets is probably a measure of just how much some prominent preachers have to hide.