This Sunday, January 17, 2016, Liberty Fellowship in Kalispell, Montana, will mark its 5th Anniversary. Liberty Fellowship is an unorganized, unincorporated, and non-affiliated fellowship. And it is most definitely not a 501c3 non-profit organization--which means donations to Liberty Fellowship are NOT tax-deductible.
When my family and I first moved to Montana in October of 2010, to start this fellowship, we were told by "everyone" that such an endeavor was hopeless. I couldn't count the number of preachers who told me that we would never make it, because Christian people simply would not support a fellowship (I refuse to use the word "church," as the definition of the word in America is mostly defined solely by the IRS--and said definition is as unscriptural as it can possibly be) because their donations would not be tax-deductible. Very adamantly they said that a fellowship that was not tax-exempt could not financially survive.
Well folks, THIS SUNDAY is the 5th Anniversary of that non-tax-exempt fellowship. The critics and naysayers were wrong. I'm sure it's true that in most "churches" the biggest reason people give is in order to receive a deduction on their income taxes at the end of the year. You don't believe that? Just announce one Sunday that people's' offerings will no longer be deductible on their tax forms at the end of the year and see how many people stick around. But that's NOT the reason people give at Liberty Fellowship.
Gee! What did Christians do for over 1,900 years of Church history when they gave their tithes and offerings and there was no IRS around to recognize it? For that matter, what do Christians around the world do today who give their tithes and offerings without there even being any such thing as a 501c3 tax-exempt status? I guess they just give because they believe in the message coming from the pulpit and want to do what's right in the sight of God. What a novel idea.
Then again, why do most Christians attend the "church" they attend? Along with receiving their precious tax-deductions: to socialize with friends; to make business contacts; to let their kids play in all of the spiritual babysitting services known as "children's programs"; to listen to warm and fuzzy feel-good speeches called "sermons"; to salve their conscience for all of their crooked, dishonest business practices during the week; and to jump up and down during the rock concert that occupies the vast majority of time in these so-called "worship services."
There is absolutely no doubt whatsoever that the vast majority of America's pastors today are the Pied Pipers of serfdom--shouting "Hallelujah" and "Praise the Lord" as they tickle the ears of these materialistically-minded and pleasure-mad sheeple that call themselves "Christians"--until both the blind guides and gullible followers fall into the ditch of tyranny.
I bet the pastor where you go to church has not said one word publically about Obama's unlawful Executive Order further restricting the right of the American people to sell and purchase firearms, and that turns your family physician into a snoop for the government who can have your guns removed from your home without even a smidgen of accountability. I bet he hasn't said one word of counsel or clarification about the Oregon occupation. I bet you went to this "church" all year last year and never heard your pastor give a word of instruction regarding Natural and Biblical law regarding anything that took place in our country--with the possible meek mention of something to do with abortion or gay rights. No! I bet you didn't even hear him say a word when the Supreme Court put its stamp of approval on homosexual marriage.
I realize that there are rare exceptions to the above; but they are just that: RARE.
Christian people will sit in front of a milquetoast preacher for thirty minutes on Sunday morning and hear NOTHING relevant to what's happening in our country and then go home and watch FOX News for twenty-five hours a week (in between football games, of course). And if the pastor happens to inadvertently slip out a statement that contradicts what people heard on FOX News, they will deem the pastor a heretic. For all intents and purposes, in the minds of millions of professing "Christians," FOX News is not a cable news network; it is a RELIGION. Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly are America's pontiffs. Their word is gospel. No wonder we are screwed up.
The voices of the watchmen and shepherds are utterly silent. Christian people are lost in an echo chamber of political cacophony with no undergirding principles of truth to guide them. Truly, they are sheep having no shepherd. The Nineteenth Century British Baptist pastor Charles Spurgeon absolutely nailed it when he said, "A time will come when instead of shepherds feeding the sheep, the church will have clowns entertaining the goats." That day is here.
Five years ago this Sunday, we launched an experiment called Liberty Fellowship. No rock music; no smoke; no light show; no gymnasium; no "children's pastor"; no "worship leader"; no gameroom; no espresso café; no social "ministries"; no finance committees; no "education" committees; no "church growth" committees; in fact, there are no committees period.
At Liberty Fellowship, adults and children sit and listen to a man of God preach the Word of God with a heavy dose of Natural Law and the Biblical principles of liberty woven throughout. Oh, yes, we have a song service, too. It might last 15-20 minutes--usually including a vocalist or duet singing a song. Oh, and I don't think I've heard Kumbaya yet. And, no, we own no buildings and have no plans to go into debt to get one.
During the week, our people actively teach one another various practical skills. They are loving and considerate, as are their children. Many of our folks homeschool their children. Most of them have made a huge sacrifice to be here. When the service is over, the auditorium is NOT empty in five minutes. Fellowship among the people is sweet and genuine.
The average sermon at Liberty Fellowship probably lasts between an hour and fifteen minutes and an hour and a half (some are even longer)--and nobody gets restless. Can you imagine nine- and ten-year-old children (and often younger) sitting up and paying attention to their pastor deliver a 90-minute sermon in almost any "church" in America? Oh! And during the first five years of the fellowship's existence, over 450 people have made a profession of faith in Christ--that we know of.
People have moved from all over the country just to attend Liberty Fellowship. And an online Internet audience nationwide, comprised of people who wish they had such a fellowship in the town where they live, continues to grow.
Readers may watch our live online messages here:
In addition, all of our messages are archived online and may be viewed here:
Last year, our Liberty Church Project reached out to scores of pastors and churches, helping them to either withdraw from the government's 501c3 non-profit status or to start brand new non-501c3 fellowships. Many of these folks are still in the early stages of planting new fellowships and are meeting together in small groups in either living rooms or public buildings. They watch our livestream messages and fellowship around the Biblical, Natural Law principles of Liberty.
Learn more about the Liberty Church Project here:
As an FYI to readers, our most popular message series (far and away) preached at Liberty Fellowship last year was "The Church And Israel." The titles of the four messages (on one DVD) are:
*The Presentation and Rejection of The King
*"An High Priest For Ever After The Order of Melchisedec"
*Jesus: The Seed Of David, The Seed Of Abraham
*Christ's Last Words To Israel
This four sermon DVD is available here:
I firmly believe that it does not matter to a tinker's dam who is elected President or which party controls Congress: unless America's pastors start being the watchmen on the wall that God intended them to be, and until Christian people start demanding that their pastors be watchmen on the wall, nothing is going to change in this country--and we will continue to fall into the ditch of tyranny.
© Chuck Baldwin