(2) a short but dynamic article entitled “THE QUESTION that CHANGED MY LIFE” by David Ryser, and
(3) a personal welcome and note.
For the authority relied upon for all teaching on this website see:
King James Bible Page
For all entries on this website, click: Contents.
The Question that Changed My Life
by David Ryser
“A number of years ago, I had the privilege of teaching at a school of ministry. My students were hungry for God, and I was constantly searching for ways to challenge them to fall more in love with Jesus and to become voices for revival in the Church. I came across a quote attributed most often to Rev. Sam Pascoe. It is a short version of the history of Christianity, and it goes like this:
“‘Christianity started in Palestine as a fellowship; it moved to Greece and became a philosophy; it moved to Italy and became an institution; it moved to Europe and became a culture; it came to America and became an enterprise.’
“Some of the students were only 18 or 19 years old–barely out of diapers–and I wanted them to understand and appreciate the import of the last line, so I clarified it by adding, ‘An enterprise. That’s a business.’ After a few moments Martha, the youngest student in the class, raised her hand. I could not imagine what her question might be. I thought the little vignette was self-explanatory, and that I had performed it brilliantly. Nevertheless, I acknowledged Martha’s raised hand, ‘Yes, Martha.’ She asked such a simple question, ‘A business? But isn’t it supposed to be a body?’ I could not envision where this line of questioning was going, and the only response I could think of was, ‘Yes.’ She continued, ‘But when a body becomes a business, isn’t that a prostitute?‘ …”
Click “THE QUESTION that CHANGED MY LIFE” to read the remainder of this powerful article.
In the articles, books, audio teachings, and other resources on this website one can learn the biblical principles and facts that show that church legal entity status such as incorporation sole or aggregate, unincorporated association, charitable trust, Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) or § 508 tax exempt status, etc. grieves our Lord and results in dire consequences. The New Testament makes clear that God wants his churches to be spiritual entities only (For a quick study go to Separation of Church and State: God’s Churches: Spiritual or Legal Entities? which is available free in online and PDF form, in softback-see the Order information for books by Jerald Finney page.). Click the following link to see what getting involved with civil government has done for the Salvation Army: Salvation Army Reaches Settlement in Church-State Suit (Feb. 18, 2010).
I cannot overemphasize the fact that the United States government is not the friend of churches, believers, or the Lord Jesus Christ. The federal government is intruding more and more into the affairs of state churches (incoporated churches or churches who obtain any type of legal entity status, including Internal Revenue Code § 501(c)(3) or § 508 tax exempt status). In spite of the direction the federal government is leading our churches, the Christian Law Association, for example, and its lawyers led by David Gibbs, as well as pastors of fundamental Baptist churches of the Jack Hyles variety, are leading America’s “Bible believing churches” toward the heresies and apostasies that eventually come when a church compromises her love relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Other articles of relevance as to the matter of the relationship of church and state are: When the Church Bows to the State/Gay Bishops in the Church of England; Churches Changing By-Laws after Gay Marriage Ruling; click the following link for more articles: Christian Issues, Heresy, and Apostasy.
In order to fully understand the author’s conclusions, one must be born-again and continue in the God’s Word (See e.g., John 8.31-40; 2 Co. 5.17; 2 Pe. 1.3-10; After Salvation). Nothing is more important to a believer than the relationship of Christ to His local churches and compromising that relationship, as the New Testament makes clear, starts a church on the path to heresy and apostasy.
Welcome to “Separation of Church and State Law” Blog
May the Lord richly bless you and your church through this website. This website is fruit of the Separation of Church and State Law Ministry of Old Paths Baptist Church of Northfield, Minnesota. The purpose of this site is to glorify God by providing resources for believers and churches who want to learn the biblical principles regarding church, state, and separation of church and state. This website provides books, interviews, radio broadcasts, sermons, articles, etc. relating to the issues involving church, state, and the relationship of church and state. Taking advantage of these resources will educate the believer who wants to understand the theology (true theology in the word of God), history, law, etc. concerning the preeminent doctrines of church, state, and separation of church and state (as opposed to separation of God and state). Thus, this website will be invaluable to those churhces who are seeking to glorify God and please the Lord Jesus Christ by organizing according to biblical principles–in other words according to the highest and controlling church and state law.
Most importantly, this website first recognizes that there are two types of people, saved and unsaved; provides guides for the unsaved to get saved (Left click: Salvation.); and explains that the saved have responsibilities that only they may achieve (Left click: After Salvation.).
Anyone can learn many valuable facts concerning government, church, and separation of church and state through the resources offered on this website. For example, in God Betrayed/Separation of Church and State: The Biblical Principles and the American Application by Jerald Finney one will learn many verifiable facts that he probably has never read anywhere else about the history of the First Amendment and Supreme Court Court Jurisprudence concerning the issue of separation of church and state. By the way, the Supreme Court has never addressed the true history of the First Amendment and separation of church and state, probably because the Court leaves God and theology out of the equation. However, to fully understand the information and insights on this website, you must first be born again; then, after salvation, you must seek to increase your knowledge of many important issues involving the individual believer, family, church, government, and separation of church and state. If you are not born again, left click: God’s Plan of Salvation to learn how to be saved. If you are born again, go to the “After Salvation” page for information on the importance of growing in knowledge and truth and walking in the Spirit.
Jerald Finney, the author of this site, is a born-again Christian lawyer who has dedicated his life to serving the Lord in this vital and neglected ministry. Since being saved in 1982, he has been a faithful member of a Bible-believing Baptist church. In 2005, the Lord called him to become the lead counsel for the Biblical Law Center, a Christian ministry whose main function is to help churches understand and apply church and state law. After that calling, he has completed four books dealing with all issues concerning separation of church and state. In 2012, the Lord called him to become a member of Old Paths Baptist Church in Northfield, Minnesota, a local New Testament Church. Finney now operates the Lord’s “Separation of Church and State Law” ministry under the leadership of Pastor Jason Cooley of Old Paths Baptist Church. He also remains good friends with Dr. Greg Dixon, head of the Biblical Law Center.
Unlike believers and churches in many countries such as China, Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea, Columbia, and many other nations, American churches and Christians can please the Highest Authority by complying with His Church and State Law and civil government law as well. They can operate as New Testament churches while complying with American law as well–i.e., the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. A church can choose to be under God only without disobeying any civil government law and without persecution. American church and state law does not say that churches must become legal entities such as corporations, unincorporated associations, charitable trusts, corporations sole, or 501(c)(3) tax exempt organizations. Churches can choose to operate as New Testament churches under God only without persecution, because the First Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees freedom of religion and conscience, speech, press, and assembly, as well as the right to petition the civil government for a redress of grievances. While operating solely under God, they can still use all properties (real estate, vehicles, etc.) that a state church utilizes. While so doing they will have advantages over state churches–without persecution from civil government; they will not deny the power of God; they will not grieve God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost by putting themselves under another authority; they will still be free to follow all God’s directives for the organization, position, relationships, privileges, and duties of the church; they may preach on abortion, marriage, politicians, politics or on any subject they desire.
[Important Note. Christians should have the highest of integrity. They should be ideal citizens. God, the Highest Authority, has laid out, in His Word, principles for and the jurisdictions of individuals, families, churches and civil government. Should a Christian or Christians commit a crime or tort, God gives civil government jurisdiction to deal with the offender.]
The author does not presume to know it all. However, his standard is the Bible which he uses as his guide in all matters including the issues he addresses in this blog. He judges everything in the light of the Word of God. Should anyone be able to show him where he is wrong about fact(s), doctrine(s), law, or anything else, he will immediately repent and correct his teachings.
To find an answer to a question about something involving the issue of church and state law or separation of church and state, first, browse the pages below the Contents Page. You may find your answer by going to either the online version of God Betrayed or the PDF version of God Betrayed posted on this website (left click to go there). The online version does not have an index as does the PDF version. However, the author is making revisions and additions as he goes through the online version. Some of the revisions are significant; for example, he has updated his understanding of the biblical doctrine as to the supposed true or universal church and has clarified his teaching concerning dispensational versus covenant theology. He has not changed any of his conclusions concerning separation of church and state and the church remaining a spiritual as opposed to a legal entity.
The “Table of Contents” of the PDF version of God Betrayed and the “Parent Page” of the online version will guide one to a general topic. If you do not find a specific enough chapter, go to the detailed index in the PDF version. You are likely to find what you want with page number there; and you can also use that to locate the general vicinity of your desired study in the online version as well. You may get help by looking at the PDF of the Study Guide for God Betrayed. All the information in the books written by Jerald Finney are on this blog, plus more. Browse the pages to see the extent of the resources made available to answer all your questions about the issue of separation of church and state and the many related issues. Also, you may listen to sermons, learn about Pastor Jason Cooley and Old Paths Baptist Church, etc.
May the Lord bless you richly. If you are not saved, please consider the information on the “Salvation Page.” If you are saved, you may find the information on the “After Salvation” page to be of help.
Click the following link to see a wordpress.com review of the 2013 happenings on this website: 2013 In Review.
Click the following link to see a wordpress.com review of the 2014 happenings on this website: 2014 Annual Report.