Picking a Bad Fight

May 12, 2008

The Alliance Defense Fund is hoping to pick a fight with the IRS. They are looking for a pastor who will become involved in partisan politics from the pulpit and thus endanger their church's tax-exempt status. The ADF hopes that a church will lose its tax-exempt status so that they can sue to challenge the constitutionality of the law that prevents partisan involvement from the pulpit. This is being framed as a religious freedom issue, but as one critic of the effort points out, a church can become involved in partisan politics--they just cannot keep their tax-exempt status. The real problem is that there are Christian groups that are actually encouraging pastors to violate this law and use the pulpit or church bulletin to endorse and attack candidates. Even if it were allowed by the IRS, it is not an activity in which churches should engage. We must not allow partisan politics to replace the gospel of Jesus. It is unfortunate that a group is actually encouraging churches to prostitute themselves in a quest for political influence and power.

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