A Federal Court Acknowledges
Christ’s True Church
IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATESFOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA CENTRAL DIVISION
Before: Hon. ALFONSO J. ZIRPOLI, Judge
This book may be found in public libraries in many cities in the United States with 20,000 population and over [as of time of publication].
Several years ago some members of the “corpus Christi,“ the church which is Christ’s body, became convinced that it would be cowardly and sinful for us to agree silently that “Caesar“ [the state] had a right to describe and define “the church of God“ as being UN-incorporated and, therefore, disqualified to claim exemptions from income tax; or for the members of that church to denied deductions for contributions to that church in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Since “Caesar,“ in this case the United Sates government, declares positively that NONprofit religious corporations are not to be taxed, we knew that no part of the DIVINELY incorporated “corpus Christi“ owed any tax to Caesar. We became convinced that to submit silently to being ignored and denied our rights as citizens of the United Sates in the tax matter would be to deny our GLORIOUS HEAD and the reality and efficiency of the “church which is His body.“ Therefore, after much prayer and much study of the Word of God, we “appealed to Caesar,“ [Matt. 22:21; Acts 22:25; Acts 25:8-12]. We went above the Internal Revenue Department in an appeal to our Federal Courts.
This last statement is not a reflection upon our Internal Revenue Department. We are simply taking advantage of our Constitutional and Biblical rights in determining what, in this case, is “Caesar’s“ and what is God’s.
We have no reason to doubt that this case is unique in our United States courts. All Christians in this country [and elsewhere] should have been doctrinally clear and spiritually determined to earnestly contend for the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
Read Eph. 4:3-5 and Jude 1. When professing Christians feel the need of asking the civil government to grant them incorporation status and official state incorporation papers, it is because those professed Christians are desirous of being other than the “church which is Christ’s body.“ Neither the Lord Jesus Christ nor His body can be “incorporated“ by man.
We were chided in the earlier stages of this case by some of the lawyers for not forming “some kind of NON-PROFIT religious corporation that would meet the civil code,“ etc. They “legally“ assured us that we could very easily “avoid all this trouble and talk“ by forming and organization and naming it anything we pleased. We courteously and confidently informed these Internal Revenue agents that our God-given responsibilities could not be thus “man-handled“ since the God whose church we are in and are functioning in is not a dummy, and the Head of it is not merely a “figure-head.“
Secondly, we are gratefully aware of the fact that the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag declares that this is “one nation UNDER God.“ This LIVING GOD’S Word about His church is full and final.
While being deeply grateful to Federal Judge Alfonso J. Zirpoli for the dignified graciousness he showed in allowing us to present our case, we do not believe his decision in our favor was other than any just judge would be forced to render after hearing or reading what we are herein presenting you. We do think, however, that it would have been almost impossible for any judge to have given a clearer and more accurate summation of our position than he did in his decision when he declared,
“These factors noted by the government might normally be indicative of an absence of unity of purpose of operation. However, in the case of the church in question, they stem from the very doctrinal ties that bind its members together. The members of this church regard themselves simply as members of the body of Christ, that is, members of the body of persons following the teachings of Christ as revealed in the New Testament. They have refrained from adopting a denominational name and any written organizational guide supplementary to the New Testament because they believe that to do so would be to add an arbitrary gloss to Biblical precepts, thus obscuring the Word of God. . . .”
The question of “church and state“ is squarely faced and greatly simplified in this record of the court case. The few hundred Christians immediately involved in this income tax case humbly and Biblically refuse to destroy the pilgrim, “called-out“ character of the church which is Christ’s body by “breaking ground“ with “Caesar-incorporated“ real estate.
THE MOST HIGH DWELLETH NOT IN TEMPLES MADE WITH HANDS. Acts 7:48
—M. M. J.