More letters from pastors and others regarding “Separation of Church and State Law” issues

Jerald Finney
May 4, 2014

The following is a complete list (with links) to prior publications of letters concerning this blog. Notice the article Letters from Pastors Regarding Hyles/Schaap and Other Articles which was published September 9, 2010, not long after the 2010 Hyles/Schaap articles were published:

041813 More letters from pastors and others regarding issues raised on this “Separation of Church and State Law” blog

110511 More Letters from Pastors and Others

040511 More Letters from Pastors and Others

121110 More Letters from Pastors and Others concerning this “Separation of Church and State Law” Blog

090610 Letters from Pastors Regarding Hyles/Schaap and Other Articles

041810 More Letters from Pastors in Response to the “Separation of Church and State Law” blog ad My Replies

033010 Letters from Pastors in Response to the “Separation of Church and State Law” blog ad My Replies

102309 What Pastors are Saying in Response to this blog

To download a document, right click the link, then left click “Download Linked File” or “Download Linked File As.”


Note. A “+” represents a supportive letter, a “-” a negative letter, and neither + nor minus a neutral letter

I. Introduction
II. (+)
Letter no. 1 received from Brother Rick Bagwell in response to article “Monumental ‘666-CLA’ Sermon that was attacked by Satan” received on May 2, 2014 regarding a letter he received from a youth pastor regarding the relationship of church, the believer, and the state
. My Reply to Brother Rick’s letter above
b. Brother Rick’s reply to my reply
III. (+) Letter no. 2 received on February 28, 2014 from Pastor William Raymond from  regarding “The Folly of all so-called Christian Patriot Remedies and a ‘Better’ Human Government”and my reply.
IV. (-) Letter no. 3 received on February 24, 2014 from [man] asking for a sample trust document with replies back and forth between he and I.
V. (+)
Letter no. 4 received on Facebook on November 27, 2013 regarding church 501c3 status and other matters and my reply.
VI. (+)
Letter no. 5 received on September 23, 2013 from [man] commenting upon article American Abuse of Romans 13.1-2 and Related Verses
VII. ()
Letter no. 6 received on October 1, 2013 from [man]  regarding “starting a church” and and my reply
VIII. (+)
Letter no. 7 received from Joshua Joscelyn on Facebook on July 22, 2013 regarding a friend who believes in theocracy and marriage of church/state, that abuses of that doctrine doesn’t mean the doctrine is wrong and asking about “the best biblical base for liberty of conscience” with replies back and forth between Joshua and I
IX. (+) Letter no. 8 received on July 3, 2013 from Rev. Paul Wayne Flotz on “trouble in the assemblies” and my reply
X. () Letter No. 9 received on June 13, 2013 from [woman] on “as pastor’s view 501c3″ and my reply
XI. (+) Letter no. 10 from Brother Stanly Rogers on Facebook regarding church Bible studies on Romans 13
XII. (+) Letter No. 11 received on April 11, 2012 from Elwood Hays, an old and dear friend concerning this “Separation of Church and State Law Ministry” and my reply
XIII. Letter no. 12 received on July 28, 2011 from [Steve, a church member of a church in Ohio] concerning liability of church members of an unincorporated church with replies back and forth between he and I
XIV. (+)Letter no. 13 received on June 4, 2011 from Pastor Brandon Teague regarding Pastor Jason Cooley’s sermon “Whose House Is It Anyway” and my reply
XV. (+) Letter no. 14 received on May 3, 2011 from Brandon, expressing concerns because of inconsistency of his pastor’s preaching concerning headship of Christ over His church yet the church is incorporated and my reply
XVI. Letter no. 15 received on March 13, 2011 from [] on “how can a church be set up and own property?”

I. Introduction

This article presents more e-mails from pastors and others with their comments, concerns, and questions concerning articles on this blog, and my replies to those e-mails. These e-mail letters not only raise important questions which need to be addressed, but also give insights into the thoughts of pastors and other believers and non-believers.

II. Letter no. 1 received from Brother Rick Bagwell in response to article “Monumental ‘666-CLA’ Sermon that was attacked by Satan” received on May 2, 2014 regarding a letter he received from a youth pastor regarding the false fundamental position on 501(c)(3)

Brother Finney I sent an article you sent to me about 666 CLA to an ewelryentl. A Church I am considering joining. I may call you by phone later. Anyway here is his reply. I know he is wrong on many points and don’t know how to explain it to him.

Brother Rick

On Friday, May 2, 2014 12:01 PM, [A youth pastor and heretic on this matter] wrote:

It’s funny how God works. Just this morning I read Romans 13.

Rom 13:1 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

Rom 13:2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

Rom 13:3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:

Rom 13:4 For he (whoever it is that is in charge or in office) is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

Rom 13:5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.

Rom 13:6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.

Rom 13:7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.

I might not like who is in political offices. I might not not like  what is going on in our government or any other government. According to what I read in Romans 13 The very God that created the universe, has put powers (government) in place.

I will exercise my right to vote as an American, but God will have his soverine way. And if he chooses to bless or judge through government, all we should say is “THANK YOU LORD!

Brother Rick

My reply

Dear Brother Rick:

I have totally and biblically proven the arguments of this person to be false (really, his arguments are ludicrous and Satan loves to hear a believer rely on them). If he loves the Lord, and wants to know the truth, he can go to the resources below. He has never studied these matters (that is obvious from his simplistic arguments which are easily shown to be false with honest Bible study). He is a parrot as to these matters. He is simply repeating words that have been taught him. One cannot give easy answers to the deeper things of God which are very important to understand if one is to fight as a good soldier of Christ the spiritual warfare we are commanded to fight.

I recommend to refer him to the following verses:

Ephesians 6:10-20 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.|”

2 Peter 1:2-10  “Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:  Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:”

The above are just two of the many verses he needs to look at in regards to these matters. For a comprehensive understanding of the spiritual warfare believers are called to fight, I recommend that you refer him to:

After Salvation

Let me say that a church can choose to operate according to biblical principle without persecution in America because of the First Amendment to the US constitution. Even should a church not decide to do so, that church and the members should continue to operate as God laid out in the New Testament. This is all explained in much detail in my writings. In addition, a believer should “obey God rather than men.”

I recommend, for an understanding of Romans 13, 1 Pe. 2.13, 1 Ti. 2.1-6, Matthew 17.24-27, and the Render unto Caesar argument used by heretics to support unlimited submission to the civil government the following resource:

Romans 13 and related verses 

As to the  correct understanding of the biblical doctrine of government, I recommend the following:

The biblical doctrine of government

As to the  correct understanding of the biblical doctrine of church, I recommend the following:

The biblical doctrine of the church

As to the  correct understanding of the biblical doctrine of separation of church and state, I recommend the following:

The biblical doctrine of separation of church and state

For an understanding of church incorporation and 501c3 I recommend the following:

Church legal issues from a biblical perspective; e.g. church incorporation and 501c3

For an understanding of the position of true believers on the issue of separation of church and state I recommend:

The History of the First Amendment

I doubt he wishes to study these matters. Even our Lord could not get through to the Pharisees, etc. because of they were blinded by the god of this world. Most fundamental Baptist preachers are likewise blinded to many biblical truths because of lack of knowledge, understanding, and wisdom. They have built religious organizations upon human reasoning (really Satanic reasoning because it is not of God and therefore must be of Satan).

Dear Brother Rick, you deserve better than what this man’s church has to offer. You deserve a church that seeks to follow the Lord, not fundmentalism. Yes, God can and does save some in spite of these heretical (some apostate) pastors and churches, but these type pastors and churches are totally out of biblical order. I consider you to be a great man of God and offer this advice in love.

Offer him the resources above, but my guess is that he has neither the time nor desire to know the truth.

For His Glory,

Brother Jerald Finney

Brother Rick’s reply to my reply

Brother Finney I am with you on his ability to listen. He is a Youth Pastor and like MOST preachers/pastors they want to talk but FAIL to listen to the truth. For the most part the Church is Fundamental. When I talked to the Pastor [another individual] I asked him if the Church is 501-C-3 his reply was it is and it isn’t. Now that’s like asking what is your favorite color and someone says PLAID. I believe the Pastor is either trying to go the 501-C-3 route OR he is trying to steer the Church AWAY from it. Not sure.

I have talked to Pastors in the area and they will ignore the question or avoid any sort of dialog on the subject. Actually avoiding me. The Bible says to forsake not the assembly of yourselves together. It also says if two do not agree and so forth. I also talked to the Youth Pastor about Deut. 22:5 he doesn’t think it is wrong for women to wear pants.  They say the Church is NOT Southern Baptist, I found it to have Southern Baptist leanings. Most Churches are Country Clubs. Entertainment is the norm. I shall pray about the matter.

III. Letter no. 2 received on February 28, 2014 from Pastor William Raymond from  regarding “The Folly of all so-called Christian Patriot Remedies and a ‘Better’ Human Government”

The Folly of all so-called Christian Patriot Remedies and a “Better” Human I

In response to several brothers who were kind enough to included me in their discussion of certain so-called Christian Patriot remedies and their much venerated – and in other cases worshiped – American Constitution, I was led of the Lord to reply with the following letter in defense of the Kingdom. Understand, it is never wise to seek to build something in substitution of that which God in His infinite wisdom has already built perfectly for us. Herein lies the folly of all so-called Christian Patriot movement remedies and the human government by Constitution that they hold out to be the cure for all political sickness. In the end they are just as deadly as that which they seek to circumvent, for all human solutions in the end are pure folly.

May the Lord Jesus be lifted up in this message of truth and may we who seek to serve Him in spirit and in truth open our hearts to the profound realities which He protectively hides from the wise and prudent in order to maintain the purity of His Kingdom.

Greeting in Christ Jesus to all,

I have been reading these posts and have come to the conclusion that all proposed remedies I see here amount pretty much to nothing more than various failed attempt to reinvent the wheel. Please let me explain. While you all may have had a victory or two here and there, for the most part all such efforts of men are always destine to fail from the beginning and here’s why. One cannot step out of the Beast’s system and into a governmental vacuum – spiritual or otherwise. There must be another government to receive you and thank God Almighty He has provided us that Government hosted – at least in theory – by the United States Government.

For over 2000 years now we have had the Lord’s perfect solution right in front of our faces and have been looking straight through it! That solution, the Father’s only solution, is His current day Kingdom in the form of the local, community ekklesia: a fully Lawful government upon His shoulder (i.e., His body) that is immune not exempt from the secular (anti-Christ) current provisional government and is officially recognized as such via The First Amendment.

The problem is that the body of Christ, over all this time, has utterly failed her calling and holy appointment to establish that Government which He alone mandated the commissioning of. Although we have the perfect picture and model of that government to draw from as recorded in the New Testament, we, as the body of Christ, have ignored it. Likewise, not only has the body of Christ failed to build upon the foundation He gave us for a place of protection and safety, we have lost essentially everything the early church and apostles did – all the real progress they made – in establishing His Kingdom for this current dispensation. All that’s left 2000+ years later is a powerless and pathetic “Christian religion” of people who have sold their spiritual birthright for a mess of corporate 501 I (3) pottage: literally, a church structure under the legal lordship of the Beast – Satan’s political surrogate! As such, the church has willingly waived her Divine Immunity in Christ in exchange for a state granted exemption that is subject to constant ongoing review and approval.

We were commanded by Christ to “come out of her my people” and “come out from among them” to establish His holy Kingdom (holy meaning separate). Instead, those falsely calling themselves “believers” have invented denominations and religions that are legally joined (unequally yoked) with the dead and have attempted in vain to reform political “parties” and groups who have no interest whatsoever in building the true Kingdom of Christ Jesus. The so-called religious right is a perfect example of this as likewise are all the human fools on the political left.

As you may know, I spent five years at Salem attempting to establish the government of our local community ekklesia there in accordance to the New Testament model. All that came to a grinding halt in 2005 when the church was seized under court order by the New Jersey State Police Counter Terrorism Division and the local sheriff. Kathy and I were arrested under provisions of The Patriot Act and our lives changed forever. I mention this only to establish my spiritual credentials in the matters wherein I speak and to illustrate how relentless the Beast can be even when everything seems to be “in order”.

To my three brothers to whom I reply here: your goals to separate from the world are a good and worthy demonstration of your intent but unless you do so under the clear and specified authority and structure of the Christ’s holy ekklesia – an already established Lawfully recognized government – our Christ cannot bless nor take even partial part in those lesser efforts.

Please understand I mean this criticism in the spirit and love of Christ, nevertheless also in the authority of my calling as His ambassador.

Peace and blessing in the love of Christ Jesus to all,

William Raymond: pastor & ambassador for the Christ

Some say I am a fool,
And this I say is true.
I am a fool for Christ,
But whose fool are you?

My reply

I agree, Pastor Raymond, on the folly of efforts of so called “Christian Patriots.”

Only Christ will be able to crush the world powers and the beast. It is inevitable that the end times will unfold just as foretold in the word of God. The political and religious beasts will rule for a short time; then, Armeggedon and the establishment of His kingdom here on earth (by our Lord, not by man or by the church on earth, but rather by Him leading his universal assembly to crush the beast and the armies of the world). No church, believer, or group of believers will be able to stop what is coming. All a believer and a church can do here on earth is to operate according to the principles of the word of God in the life and liberty He gives when He saves.

Only a small remnant of professed believers and churches follow Christ. So-called Christians who (1) know nothing about biblical principles for a church, for governments (individual, family, and human or civil), and for the relationship of church and state and (2) follow revisionist history and law, seek to win America back for God. They operate without biblical, historical, or legal knowledge. The are do-gooders who are doing no good (they are doing bad in that they are actually doing the work of anti-Christ) because their activism is without knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.

I was with them in the Republican Party for 20 years. I saw America getting more and more evil in spite of all our efforts. Since I left politics they keep doing the same things while things continue to grow worse at an accelerating rate in the moral cesspool called America. I left political activism when the Lord, through my extensive studies, showed me the folly of what I was doing, and that what I was doing there was not according to wisdom, knowledge, and understanding.

Yet ever seeking, they never come to the knowledge of the truth. The fact is that they are not seeking truth, because they have been blinded by the god of this world.

Their lives are not under God, so how do they hope to bring America back under God?

Their families are not under God, so how do they hope to bring America back under God?

Their churches are not under God, so how do they hope to bring America back under God?

And yet they reject knowledge. Multitudes of so-called believers in America even reject clear biblical teaching on repentance and a changed life after salvation. They reject and criticize Bible teaching and preaching on the subject. In other words, they even take a Satanic position on the fundamental principle of salvation.

But praise the Lord! He has given his children the victory, and they will be victorious even if martyred for the faith, while those professed Christians who have never really been saved bow down to the beast. (See The Voice of the Martyrs, August 2005, p2, “You Will Always Have Your Groupies” which is at the bottom of the following article: Biblical doctrine of the Church)

Even so, come Lord Jesus. I pray the Lord that he will give me the courage to act on my words above if and when the time comes.

For His Glory,

Jerald Finney

IV. Letter no. 3 received on February 24, 2014 from [man] asking for a sample trust document

Would it possible for you to provide me with a sample trust document?

My reply on February 24, 2013

Sorry. Trust documents can be found in the law books. I don’t know you, etc. This is a  ministry for the glory of God and is operated according to biblical order. No insult intended.

Jerald Finney

His reply

OK Mr. Finney, I apologize for bothering you, I won’t make that mistake again. I admire your work and thought you were an attorney. The Glory of God and to operate according to biblical order is my motivation for asking.

My reply

Dear Mr. Trout,

I am an attorney, but I am also a believer and this ministry is for the glory of God and in biblical order through a local New Testament Church. I must make sure I am honoring God. I cannot just send out documents. These are not simple matters.

Are you a pastor? What church do you pastor? What is you testimony as to salvation and your walk with the Lord? Do you wish to organize a church according to New Testament principle? What is your theology as to church organization (I can only help those who agree with biblical teaching on the order, organization, etc. for the local church)? These are some of the questions that one must be prepared to answer should he wish the help of this ministry, but don’t answer these questions now. See below for your next step if you wish to proceed.

Just getting a document is not enough for one to set out to organize according to the guidelines in the NT. One must understand both legal and biblical principles and teachings. I would be doing a disservice to anyone to just send them a document. It is not wise to place a document into the hands of someone who might try to execute the document without wisdom and understanding. If you are a pastor who is following the Lord, you will understand what I am trying to get across to you.

If you wish to proceed, you must follow the order that the Lord has set out for this ministry. That means more than sending an e-mail just asking for a document. Let me know if you wish to know the order of proceeding as to these matters.

Our Lord was man and spoke like a man. So did the apostles. I am trying to follow his example in responding to you.

For His Glory,
Jerald Finney

His reply

I took the Liberty of removing your embedded videos from Utube and links to your website from my website and that of Biblical Law Center so that no one else that you don’t know will bother you either. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Dear Mr. [],

No inconvenience. The Lord is my helper and I will not fear what man does to me. By the way, if you are not saved, please read God’s Plan of Salvation.

If you are saved, please read After Salvation.

The Lord said to love my neighbor as myself. I love you, and hope that if you are lost, you will be saved; and if you are saved that you will grow in knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

For His Glory,
Jerald Finney

V. Letter no. 4 received on Facebook on November 27, 2013 regarding church 501c3 status and other matters

I’ve wondered about 501 status for some time now, and have had serious concerns. I have just come across a video with you, Pastor Cooley, and Pastor Brandon and I just want to commend you for speaking out in truth. I’ve been studying some law lately, finding a lot of things that are not spoken about. I’m not sure how much experience you have with sovereignty, constitutional law, family law – but I’ve got an open family case that I could use some help with – I’m to the point where I’ve given it to God. The Judge is a fraud, won’t listen to or enforce the statutes, laws – I’ve brought up Supreme Court, case law – Of course, he has violated his oath. If you’ve got any experience, I’d love to have a conversation with you on this. If not, no harm no foul – I still want to commend you for your work exposing the 501c3 trap.

My reply

Thanks for your e-mail and encouragement. I know quite a bit about sovereignty and constitutional law. However, I now limit myself to church and state law (which has a lot to do with sovereignty and constitutional law as well as biblical law and principles) and a limited practice in order to pay my bills. I have never practiced “family” law, so I know little about it.

Thanks for your e-mail. May the Lord bless you as you seek justice in your family case, a very stressful matter for sure.


VI. Letter no. 5 received on September 23, 2013 from [man] commenting upon article American Abuse of Romans 13.1-2 and Related Verses

absolutely abused beyond belief! The 13 chapter of romans has almost become a” bible doctrine” of the modern day church at large,it is abused to put it mildly and just look at the people who preach such things!!! Plenty of money credit cards fancy houses, fancy cars clothes,ewelry etc etc, the things all of gods good people have,sic! Sorry bout the scarcasam but really most of these churches that preach this kind of message contain the upper crust of society,and there all held together by a lot of dough,no pun intended people like lawyers,doctors, law enforcement,and even sadly enough military none of these people seem to notice whats up with the truth just whatever is in fashion as far as current law goes…


VII. Letter no. 6 received on October 1, 2013 from [man]  regarding “starting a church” 


You don’t know me, but my name is [] and I live in Arizona.  I am planning on starting a church in Arizona.  My pastor will be sending me out of our local church to start a new one in another part of the state.  I meet all of the biblical qualifications found in 1 Timothy and elsewhere in the Bible for being a pastor.  I have been reading quite a bit about churches incorporating and even becoming 501I3.  I have read numerous arguments explaining why a church should not incorporate and become a creature of the state.  However, I have not really been able to find any information on how to actually and practically manage the church’s finances from anyone that is against incorporating.  If it does exist, it I either can’t find it or it is being sold and is not available for free.  Unfortunately, I am very limited financially and cannot afford to start buying materials from people that may or may not answer the simple questions I have.

I believe that the pastor of the church is worthy of his hire and ought to be paid by the church for his duties.  This brings about my first question.  How do you handle any income the pastor has from the church, and do you recommend filing any type of paper work with the IRS or any government entity for that matter regarding the compensation received for being pastor?

As a church grows, it is natural that property will be attained that belongs to the church as a collective.  Whether it be vehicles, buildings, tables, chairs, etc.  Without incorporating, how do you establish property ownership, especially if someone were to bring you to court before the unbelievers?  I mean from a legal standpoint, does anything even have to be done to designate that property belongs to an entity if the entity is not recognized by the state?  Maybe I am not correct in my assumption with that last question.  Is an unincorporated church recognized by the state as an entity or organization that can own property?

Finally, I have read conflicting reports on the ability to obtain a bank account for the church without having a tax ID.  I know that money isn’t the focus of the ministry, but I do not see any problems with accepting a personal check as a tithe or offering.  I don’t see how you can accept a check without a bank account.  Do you have any suggestions on how to handle this?  Is it really possible to obtain a bank account in the church’s name without a tax ID?

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  I really did search your site and others for these answers but I could not find it.  Your website has a lot of information so it is possible that I simply missed it.  I did not follow every single link on your website although I tried to find the areas where I thought I might find the answers.  I am just trying to figure out the exact process before I get started.  Any information you can provide is appreciated.


My Reply

Dear Bro. [],

A church can operate according to the principles of the New Testament in America without persecution. If it does so, it is a First Amendment church as well because the First Amendment is in line with biblical principles and guarantees separation of church and state for churches who do not become legal entities.

I know the above paragraph may not make sense to you, and understandably so. The paragraph is understood by me, my pastor, and most of the members of the church I belong to because we have studied both the Bible and law, something that most pastors and believers have never done. Instead, Bible Colleges and most pastors teach “Bible College” principles and not biblical principles.

I have answered your questions in my teachings which are all available free on my website. As of now, these teachings are the result of at least 11 or 12 years of intense study. You must begin to study these matters now if you want to please the Lord. If you trust me, you may call me (see for contact info.), and I will give you the answers to your questions without explaining them. In order to explain these matters fully to anyone, I would have to give a college or postgrad level course or courses.

One problem with many pastors and believers is that they do not take the time to study (not read lightly or once over) the deeper things of God. My pastor, Pastor Jason Cooley, has done the study needed to understand these issues, so I know it can be done. Please do not proceed until you have the correct answers to your questions. Whether you glorify God or not is in the balance.

For His Glory,
Jerald Finney

VIII. Letter no. 7 received from Joshua Joscelyn on Facebook on July 22, 2013 regarding a friend who believes in theocracy and marriage of church/state, that abuses of that doctrine doesn’t mean the doctrine is wrong and asking about “the best biblical base for liberty of conscience”

Hi Brother Finny,

Jason Cooley recommended I contact you about the issue of separation of church and state and liberty of conscience. I’ve read James Beller etc. and believe firmly in our Baptist distinctives. But a good friend of mine and fellow church member is now saying he believes in theocracy and a marriage of church/state – and that the abuses of this doctrine by others in the past don’t mean the doctrine itself is wrong (he is also familiar with Beller’s writings).

Without going to our Baptist history, what is the best biblical base for liberty of conscience? Can you recommend a few specific verses or a good resource that breaks the issue down strictly from scripture?

Thanks for your help!

My Reply

Dear Bro. Joshua,

Thanks for your questions. Theocracy and union of church and state always have and always will result in corruption of individuals, families, churches and civil government. Total corruption is always the outcome of theocracy. This is because union of religion and state is contrary to biblical principles, except for the nation Israel. Israel was the only theocracy ever ordained by God, and even Israel became totally corrupted, first as a theocracy and then as a nation in rebellion against God who withdrew from the theocratic directives of God and demanded a King. While a theocracy, the nation had to turn to God when God judged them for their evil. Read the rest of the story in the Bible.

It’s interesting that your friend has the same attitude as did the Puritans. They felt that they would correctly implement the alledged Biblical doctrine of union of church and state, that they were the right people, at the right time, in the right place to show the world what would happen when theocracy was implemented without the abuses of the doctrine by others in the past. Their experiment was destined to failure and did fail in a very short period of time.

I cover all these matters in God Betrayed. The book is in both online and PDF form on the “Separation of Church and State” blog ( You can go to the “Course” page if you really want to study and master the concepts, which takes a lot of time and study. It will be much easier to do the course than to try to figure it all out on your own.

I cover the Biblical principles in the Part One (the first three sections) of God Betrayed – that is the Biblical doctrines of government, church, and separation of church and state. Part 2 (the last three sections) then build upon that base. Right now, the “Course” page is almost finished with Section I).

Your friend is dead wrong. He has been misled by adherents to a false theology. That is what happens when God’s people do not “Study to show themselves approved of God, rightly dividing the Word of Truth.

May the Lord continue to richly bless you as you continue to grow in knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.

For His Glory,
Brother Finney

His reply to my reply

Wow, that is quite the exhaustive course – thanks for the help, Brother. The surprising thing about all this is that this friend has been an avid student of Baptist history and a zealous defender of the Baptist distinctives – I fear he has simply been led astray by the likes of David Barton et. Al.

My reply

David Barton has done tremendous damage to the cause of Christ. I was misled by him for many years after being saved in 1982. Only after seeing the utter failure of the labors of millions of “Christians,” and only after the Lord directed me into the church and state law ministry, and only after I had to do a tremendous amount of self-study of the Bible, history, and law in order to be qualified to serve the Lord in the ministry did I discover the truth about Barton, Rushdooney, Gary North, Gary Demar, Hank Handgraph, R.C. Sproul, D. James Kennedy, etc.

IX. Letter no. 8 received on July 3, 2013 from Rev. Paul Wayne Flotz on “trouble in the assemblies”

Denying Sola Scriptura, Adopting Arminianism Regarding Salvation and Worship (Adding Unbiblical Innovations To Public Worship According to Man’s Will Instead Of God’s Will), Massive Infiltration of Humanist Psychology & Psychiatry Into the Church, Syncretism In Doctrine and Practice, A Lack of Explicit Biblical Terms of Communion, Adding Unauthorized Holy Days Not Found In The Bible and Even Adopting Antichrist’s (Papal) Holy Days, Little or No Godly Discipline and Little or No Church Government According To the Scriptural Pattern, Tolerating and Even Promoting the Federal Vision Heresy, Attacks On Justification By Faith Alone, contemporary Christian music, using Bible perversions, and Much More Has led to problems in today’s local assemblies.

My reply


X. Letter no. 9 received on June 13, 2013 from [woman] on “as pastors view 501c3″

Is this true??

Every church is viewed as a 501c3 automatically. They don’t have to apply or get a letter to be seen that way. It is the law. I have never applied for 501c3 exemption, but every church I have pastored for 20 years has been viewed that way.  It is a fact lol

My Reply

It is absolutely untrue. It is not the law. Who  “viewed” the churches as 501c3? In fact, the statements are nonsense.

These pastors should quit spreading falsehood and get an education on these matters. A good place to begin is at “Separation of church and state law” blog ( But to understand it, expect to spend a lot of time in study (of the Bible, law, and history).

Brother Jerald Finney

XI. Letter no. 10 from Brother Stanley Rogers on Facebook regarding church Bible studies on Romans 13

Tonight at Woodbridge Baptist we are continuing our study through the book of Romans. We will begin Chapter 13. This has been an exciting and encouraging study for me. I want to thank Brother Jason Cooley and Brother Jerald Finney for their tireless efforts of teaching the proper rolls of Church and State. Their messages on this subject have been an encouragement to me. Come on and join us in this study. You just might get your heart stirred to proclaim and stand for your Heavenly Citizenship!

XII. Letter No. 11 received on April 11, 2012 from Elwood Hays, an old and dear friend concerning this “Separation of Church and State Law Ministry”

May God continue to bless you in your ministry and may many have their eyes open as a result of your teaching. The oppression of our own government towards Christians and the Church seems to be getting  stronger all the time. I pray that as a nation, a mighty remnant will rise up that worships God as God directs and not as our nation would seek to dilute the Church.


My Reply

Thanks, Elwood. Your letter is a great encouragement to me. As I have said many times, you have always been a light on a hill to me. May the Lord continue to richly bless you and your family.

XIII. Letter no. 12 received on July 28, 2011 from [Steve, a church member of a church in Ohio] concerning liability of church members of an unincorporated church

I am very involved in my church in Ohio as a member. Recently a member of our church stated that if our church was not incorporated, each member is open up for law suits since the church cannot be sued itself.

Is this true?? After googling this subject, I came across your name.


My Reply

Dear Steve,

Thanks for your e-mail and concern.

Your friend was misinformed and passing on misinformation. Even some unscrupulous Christian lawyers are using scare tactics to influence churches to incorporate and get 501I(3) tax exemption; their motive? – you probably know the answer. Undereducated worldly pastors are passing on the information. Sadly, most Bible colleges and seminaries are also wrongly training their students about these matters.

I do not have time to go into all matters concerning this issue in writing in this e-mail. However, I have addressed this question in articles and audio teachings on “Separation of Church and State” law blog ( and in the books the Lord has led me to write. Some of the chapters in Section VI of God Betrayed/Separation of Church and State: The Biblical Principles and the American Application specifically examine the various spurious rationale given for church incorporation and 501I(3).

Let me say that non-incorporated, non-501(c)(3) churches which are properly organized have more protection than state churches (incorporated 501(c)(3) churches). New Testament churches are not legal entities such as incorporations, unincorporated associations, individuals, etc as are state churches. State churches willingly and eagerly (due to ignorance and lack of love for our Lord) give up their First Amendment protections as well as, to one degree or another, the protections afforded by God. State churches place themselves under the Fourteenth Amendment by becoming legal entities. New Testament churches retain their First Amendment protections and are not legal entities. Only legal entities can act legally, sue, or be sued.

Individual members in either of New Testament churches or state churches are legal entities and can sue or be sued or charged with crime for their individual torts or crimes in which they participate. However, members of New Testament churches cannot be sued, as a church, because a New Testament church is not a legal entity.

Of course, the day may soon come when America treats Christians and churches as does North Korea, China, Afganistan, Iran, Iraq, Egypt, most Moslem nations, etc. Even then, a true believer and church is instructed by God’s Word to “obey God rather than man” as to those matters over which He has given civil government no jurisdiction. I look at this issue in depth in Render unto God the Things that Are His: A Systematic Study of Romans 13 and Related Verses. That teaching is also on the “Separation of Church and State Law” blog in both audio and written form.

Should anyone take issue with what I say above, I fully explain these matters in the resources mentioned above. If they wish to examine those resources and discuss them with me, I am always available, at no charge since this is a God-called ministry. Feel free to contact me at any time by phone or e-mail. My cell no. is 512-785-8445. My home phone no. is 512-385-0761. I am very busy so you cannot always expect an immediate response. To know the truth, one must hear all sides of an issue. This requires serious study and an open mind. May the Lord guide you in your search for His truth.

For His Glory,

[Steve’s] reply to my reply

Thank you for responding so quickly.

I will be looking for your books you mentioned. Do I purchase the books directly through you?

Thank You,

My reply

Dear Steve,

You can get them (2 printed and 2 on Kindle) on You can order them from Kerygma Publishing by going to the books page of or by going to the following page on this website: “Order information for books by Jerald Finney.” All the books are free in both online and PDF form on this website.


XIV. Letter no. 13 received on June 4, 2011 from Pastor Brandon Teague regarding Pastor Jason Cooley’s sermon “Whose House Is It Anyway”

Bro. Finney,

I just finished listening to “Who’s House Is It Anyway” by Pastor Jason Cooley. That was a true blessing to me. It is refreshing to know that there are men of sound heart and mind that are waking up to the reality of the government takeover of Christianity. I have never regretted for one moment that we organized under the Declaration of Trust and I am thankful that you, Dr. Dixon and Sister Barbara are faithful in the fight. God bless you.

My reply

Thanks, Pastor Teague for your letter. And thank you for your stand for the whole counsel of God, including the very important doctrines of church, state, and separation of church and state.

[One may go to the sermon by clicking the following link and scrolling down to “3. Sermons on the Doctrine of the Church”: “Sermons by Pastor Jason Cooley”.]

Brother Finney

XV. Letter no. 14 received on May 3, 2011 from Brandon, expressing concerns because of inconsistency of his pastor’s preaching concerning headship of Christ over His church yet the church is incorporated

Dear Mr. Finney,

I just came across your web page not long ago and I am very much interested to continue to listen and read your information regarding the 501c3 tax exempt status. Long story short i have been very trouble since coming to learn about it. I believe that being incorporated hinders the church from speaking out against the moral issues of the day.The church espouses to give all glory to God in everything that they do. The pastor gave a sermon on the importance of the headship of Christ over the church. It was stated in the sermon quote, ” to deny Him His place as king in His church is to imperil one personal relationship to Him almost as much as if to deny His attonement. You cannot deny His headship in His church without significant result and they being all negative.’

It was also stated quote, ” for the believer to join with those who gave over His authority as king to any earthly sovereign was about as wicked as to join with those who set aside His personal authority, that they might serve the devil and the world and the flesh.” end quote. How can a pastor preach on the importance of this subject, the headship and knowing very well that his church is incorporated? I did approach the pastor and spoke briefly concerning the status only to recieve an answer that the church is not restricted in anyway. So with all that i have shared with you I would greatly appreciate your feed back. And one other question if i may, how does one go to church when all the churches are incorporated?

God Bless you,
For His Name Sake,

My reply

Dear Brother Brandon

Thanks for your inquiry. I offer some brief comments in love. I mean to attack no one, but I offer the truth in love. Needless to say, I am not God. I judge no one. Everyone ultimately answers to God. This is especially true of pastors. Judgment will be on the basis of truth. I invite anyone show me where I am wrong biblically, historically, or legally. No one has been able to do so after six years in this ministry. No one has even offered a logical and considered effort to do so. I believe that this is because they cannot. The truth is hard to defeat. Should anyone be able to prove that I am wrong as to any matter, I will repent and modify by words and deeds accordingly.

Any believer who has not yet been blinded by the principles of the God of this world and who studies church corporate 501(c)(3) status understands that the use of such devices by a church violates the very principles you referenced as preached by your pastor. I have gone into these matters in some detail in my articles, books, and audio teachings.

I know pastors who, upon beginning the process of seeking church incorporation and 501c3 status, immediately saw the violation of biblical principles by such devices, taught the members the principles and the application of those principles, and organized their churches in a manner which pleases God. Those pastors were grounded in the principles of God, not the principles of the god of this world. I know other pastors who discovered the truth about these matters after the churches they pastored had already obtained corporate 501c3 status and who subsequently repented and, with the members’ support, reorganized according to principles in the Word of God.

By the way, a church in America can operate both in compliance with both biblical principle and American law. In many nations, churches who wish to please our Lord have to operate underground.

Again, in my books, articles, and audio teachings, I explain church incorporation and 501c3 and how such legal tools definitely grieve our Lord since they place churches which utilize them at least partially under a head other than the Lord Jesus Christ and entangle them in Satanic activities which interfere with and damage the God-called purposes of churches and church members.

I am reminded of the following verses:

Ezekiel 33:31  “And they come unto thee as the people cometh, and they sit before thee as my people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them: for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covetousness.”

Amos 4:4-5:  “Come to Bethel, and transgress; at Gilgal multiply transgression; and bring your sacrifices every morning, and your tithes after three years:  And offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving with leaven, and proclaim and publish the free offerings: for this liketh you, O ye children of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.”

Isaiah 29:13:  “Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men….”

Mark 7:6-13:  “He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me….”

I hope this has been of help, dear brother. Please do not hesitate to contact me for any reason. My phone numbers are: (H) 512-385-0761; (C) 512-785-8445.

For His Glory,
Brother Jerald Finney

XVI. Letter no. 15 received on March 13, 2011 from [] on “how can a church be set up and own property?”

very interesting articles. so how should a church be properly set up and own a property? Reading your articles i see a clear discouragement from accepting government so called tax exemption, grants and corporations money due to 501c3 requirement. to do good the church will have to rely on its members or those who will give without the 501c3 requirement.

My reply

If you are a pastor of a church who desires to organize according to the principles of the New Testament, please contact me at (H) 512-385-0761 or (C) 512-785-8445. I would be glad to discuss your situation and help you in your efforts. If you are ready to act, you will need more specific direction for your particular situation. If you are not a pastor, I address your concerns in my articles, books, and audio teachings. To fully understand these matters takes a lot of time and study.

For His Glory,
Jerald Finney

The Monumental “666-CLA” Sermon that was Attacked by Satan: “501c3 Series-Seducers for the State-Christian Law Firms 501(c)(3) or 508(c)(1)(A)”

Jerald Finney
© May 1, 2014

1On Wednesday night, April 30, 2014, Pastor Jason Cooley preached a monumental sermon dealing with the issue of the relationship of church and state and specifically with church corporate-501(c)(3) status and the seducers who have led churches to compromise their love for the Lord Jesus Christ by working hand in hand with, over, or under the state: “501c3 Series-Seducers for the State-Christians Law Firms and 501(c)(3).” Normally, all Pastor Jason’s sermons have, for a long time, been streamed live and then archived over Youtube (Skype before that, which sermons were not archived in video form). I have listened to almost all his live sermons on Skype and Youtube; not a one that I can remember was not successfully broadcast (then archived on Youtube) although there have been a few temporary problems. Youtube never recorded this sermon.


Pastor Jason was talking over the phone with me as he and another church member were driving to the April 30 church meeting. He was telling me about his upcoming sermon. I became excited as he told me about it because the Lord has called me, as a member of Old Paths Baptist Church,  to lead under the headship of Pastor Jason Cooley, the “Separation of Church and State Law Ministry” out of Old Paths Baptist Church. As he was talking, he excitedly stated, “The car in front of me has a license plate which says, ‘666-CLA.'” I was amazed. He told me he was going to take a picture of the license plate. That picture is at left. Pastor Jason had a witness riding with him in the car. When he got to the meeting place, the services were delayed 45 minutes (See Pastor Cooley’s description of what happened below). He finally began the Wednesday night meeting. After his preliminary remarks, and just as he said that he was going to begin the sermon, Youtube went blank. I called several times to see why the broadcast was interrupted. Attempts to get it going were futile, and it was not recorded by Youtube.

DavidGibbsThe good thing is that God provided a backup which has preserved the sermon for all to hear: an audio recorder from which the sermon was transferred to

Satan is fighting hard to prevent the truths concerning the relationship between church and state and about his tactics and emissaries. I say to you Lucifer: “This time it backfired on you.” I also say to you, “You have already lost.” Believing students of the word of God know the story of mankind from beginning to end. They know that Christ, by force, will establish and rule his earthly kingdom. They know that you will be cast into the lake of fire. Halleluiah.

The following is a comment from a person who listened to the above sermon on

5/1/14 9:13 AM
Louise Dreves from Bloomington, Minnesota
Seducers For the State – Christian Law Firms…
Jason Cooley
“ Excellent! ”
If anyone is on the fence on the 501C3 issue…this teaching will settle the issue once and for all. I pray all pastors will repent and renounce their 501C3 status and become biblical churches with Jesus Christ as Lord (not Ceasar). David Gibbs (Nahum 1:11)and the CLA are powerful tools of satan to silence the churches in this age of increasing wickedness and corruption. I praise God for Old Paths Baptist church and Pastor Cooley for speaking the truth no matter what.

Pastor Jason Cooley wrote this on Facebook:

Thu, May 1, 2014 at 10:37 AM
10:37 AM
Jason Cooley commented on a link that you’re tagged in.
Jason wrote: “The devil is what happened I had a spiritual war to get this thing out , want to know what I saw when I pulled up to the meeting house right before I was going to preach . This was right in front of me . CLA IS THE LETTERS FOR THE CHRISTIAN LAW ASSOCIATION. I WALKED INTO THE MEETING HOUSE . OUR ROOM WAS TAKEN , OUR EQUIPMENT TWOUDL NOT WORK PROPERLY ….AND THE SPIRITUALLY THE DEVIL WAS FIGHTING ME”
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