I’m now beginning a new multi-part series focusing on a facet rarely touched upon in research on dominionist groups–the rather extensive dominionist “parallel economy” set up as an alternative to “secular businesses”. As you will see, the “parallel economy” is highly influential as both a funding source for dominionism and as a way of isolating dominionists–and it is quite extensive, running from hobby stores to entire “yellow pages” type directories to doctors to media to “charity affinity” programs to even kid’s dolls.
Part 1 will focus on a particular facet of the dominionist parallel economy–the dominionist business directory, often marketed as the “Christian Yellow Pages”, “Shepherd’s Pages”, etc. Such guides are a major resource for dominionists–and, as we will see, also a major resource for intel on dominionist corporate funders.
Today’s entry in a history of the dominionist parallel economy starts with the misadventure of one of my coworkers some months ago.
This co-worker–let’s call him “Bob”–recently had to get an electrician at his house, and…to make a very long and aggravating story short, essentially he was very ill treated by the electrician when aforementioned electrician discovered they were not Christians.
In his talking with the electrician and in his wife’s discussions, the electrician let on that he was listed in a directory of “Christian businesses” (specifically the “Shepherd’s Guide“, a listing of dominionist-friendly businesses).
“Bob”, knowing that I am rather…activist in my opposition to dominionism, asked me about this and I confirmed that, yes, dominionists actually keep their own directories of businesses, explained how these work, and recommended that he note the businesses listed therein as folks to avoid. (Yes, I had given my co-workers a brief introduction to dominionism, using the Marguerite “God Warrior” Perrin episode of “Trading Spouses” as a lead-in–among other things, they couldn’t understand why the “funny fundie” tended to make me upset; as it is, Marguerite Perrin reminds me strikingly of my own abusive mother. Still don’t like to watch those episodes–too triggering for my liking.)
“Bob” has since gotten a copy of the “Shepherd’s Guide”–and is using this specifically as a list of businesses to boycott.
I myself was familiar with the “Shepherd’s Guide”–the “Joel’s Army” group I escaped fromwas a big promoter of the “Shepherd’s Pages”; in fact, these directories are a major gateway into an entire parallel universe of sorts–a “parallel economy”, if you will–of dominionist-owned and dominionist-friendly businesses, where readers are exhorted to only do business with people of “like faith”.
Part 1: in which how I explain how these directories work and whom they are aimed for
The idea of “Christian Yellow Pages” directories started–as many, many trends in the dominionist community have started–in the pentecostal community as a way to avoid “secular” or “worldly” businesses.
It may surprise people to know that dominionist groups have a rather impressive “parallel economy”. Partly this is due to dominionist groups (especially those heavy into “spiritual warfare” beliefs) believing that interacting with non-dominionists in business and in quite literally every other field other than conversion risking being “demonised” or “opening doorways to Satan”; partly this is due to the increasing trend of spiritually abusive tactics encouraging people to interact only within the dominionist community.
As a result of the promotion of this massive “parallel economy”, we now have the phenomena of the dominionist business directory–and it is a non-negligible business resource for dominionist companies:
To find a name for his company’s latest project, an online site listing local Christian businesses, churches and ministries, Tim Jones opened his Bible. The answer was right there, in the New Testament’s glowing red text.
“Red print is representative of Christ’s words, just as these businesses are representatives of Christ,” said Jones, founding partner of Eternal Works LLC, a Chesapeake media company that launched the Red Letter Directory in February. Christian businesses can sign up for a free listing on the site or pay between $5.95 and $19.95 for additional features.
Jones’ site is the latest example of efforts to help Christian businesses market to Christian consumers, a trend that began more than 25 years ago and shows no signs of losing steam.
Hampton Roads has four Christian business directories plus at least two organizations bringing together Christian business owners. As Christian-owned businesses expand beyond bookstores and into nearly every industry, these directories offer businesses a way to access a faith-based community of consumers.
“If you were going to walk into a Christian business, you’re not going to see crosses on the walls. There might be Christian music playing in the background or a Bible on a shelf,” said Ray Boetcher, the owner of the Church and Good Business Guide and the executive director of the Christian Business Network of Hampton Roads.
The Church and Good Business Guide, based in Virginia Beach, is available for free each month at churches, Christian business offices and distribution boxes throughout Hampton Roads.
The Shepherd’s Guide, the “Christian yellow pages,” has been published in Hampton Roads annually for 21 years and added a searchable online site in 2004.
In 1980, it began as a single-market publication out of Baltimore. The guide now is published in 130 markets nationwide and reaches more than 4 million families.
Nationally, the number of Christian businesses has grown to between 500,000 and 600,000 in 2005, said Michael Zigarelli, former dean of Regent University’s business school in Virginia Beach and now a professor at Charleston Southern University in South Carolina.
Some 2,200 Christian businesses are listed in the local Shepherd’s Guide. Rodica Lambert, who owns the guide with her husband, Tim, said there is continued demand for the directory, as elderly people and families seek out trustworthy local businesses to perform services in their homes.
“They would rather give their business to someone who regularly attends a local church, tithes and lives an honorable life,” she said. Each business listed in the book or the site is asked to sign a statement of faith.
Advertising in the 6- by-9-inch paperback book starts in the $300 range.
Customers use the listings to find Christian-owned services or companies. For many businesses, the guide is just one way they market themselves.
Sean Doherty, president of Doherty’s Roofing & Siding in Virginia Beach, said his ad in The Shepherd’s Guide has brought in about 30 percent of his customers in the past 10 years.
“I get calls from people who say, ‘I found you in The Shepherd’s Guide’ or ‘I saw the Jesus fish on your truck,’ ” said Billy Wagner, who owns Virginia Beach-based Start Packing movers, also listed in the guide.
A majority of his company’s customers come from referrals, he said. “But I love working with Christians…. I’ve found when you’re working with Christians, you just get a better chance for a better move.”
As you’ll soon see, the definition of “Christian” used here should more properly be referred to as “dominionists”–Catholics and mainstream Christians need not apply.
At any rate, starting in about 1973-ish, dominionist groups started printing their own business directories.
My first exposure to “Christian Yellow Pages” directories–besides, obviously, their promotion in the dominionist community–was via a book published by the Simon Wiesenthal Society (a Jewish anti-racism group) that noted the promotion of these directories and their requirement to sign a statement of faith. This article which originally appeared in a church publication of the Presbyterian Church USA warns about them:
In July the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S. (Southern) adopted a resolution asking members of the denomination not to patronize the directories, declaring that they are “divisive among Christians” and “discriminatory in relation to the Jewish community.” Charles Davidson, the Jacksonville, Florida, pastor who wrote the resolution, said that he was told that as of June, the directories had been published in 57 cities. “The ethics of it,” he said, “run counter to the highest Christian principles of fairness and nondiscrimination in the market place. There is little difference between religious discrimination in a public advertising medium and racial, creedal or sexual discrimination in the voting booth, the sale of housing, or as the basis for employment.”
Much of the concern so far with Jewish groups is that these directories are subtly antisemitic:
For years campaigns have occasionally been waged to persuade the public to buy locally or even to buy only American-made products. Now in the religious realm a kind of “born-again” Yellow Page directory is being issued which limits its listings to businesses operated by those who “accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.” The project is under attack by a Jewish group that terms it “a throwback to Germany under Hitler,” recalling the “buy Christian” campaigns that started in Germany in the 1930s, and that resulted in a widespread refusal to trade with Jewish merchants in the years preceding the Third Reich’s more brutal acts of anti-Semitism.
The man behind the “born-again” Yellow Pages says that such Jewish critics are being “paranoid,” and insists that “Christians need to know who their fellow Christians are in the business community in order to do business with them.” Says W. R. Tomson, national director of the Christian Yellow Pages: “We believe that if you need an electric drill, you should purchase it from a Christian hardware dealer. If you need dental care, we can tell you where to find a Christian dentist. The directory says in effect, `The persons listed herein are Christian businessmen.'” The unspoken assumption — a questionable one — is apparently that the Christian consumer should find such merchants to be more honest, reliable and ethical in their business dealings than other merchants, who may identify themselves as Jewish, as secular humanists, as Christians who reject the “born-again” tag, or whatever.
As it is, they aren’t just anti-semitic, but pretty much anti-non-dominionist in general:
(from the first article)
Until recently, the publication contained the statement that a business must be owned by a born again Christian to be included in the directory. However, it was successfully sued by the California Jewish League and now must accept ads from anyone. However, they do not actively solicit ads from non-Christians, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, or businesses that operate in an unethical manner.
And from the Presbyterian Church USA article:
From his Modesto office Tomson oversees 150 salesmen who solicit advertising. He says that his men approach prospective customers with an outstretched hand and the greeting, “I understand that you are a born-again Christian.” Says Tomson: No degree in theology is heeded to determine a man’s reaction. If he looks at our man quizzically and asks, `What are you talking about?’ then we know that he’s not one of us. But if he should reply, `You bet’ or `Praise the Lord!’ — then we know that he is. It’s merely a matter of discernment. The Holy Spirit gives us a certain feeling if the man belongs with us.” All business people who wish to advertise must sign a statement that they have “accepted Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Saviour.” Since the advertisers are limited to those who identify themselves as “born-again” Christians, the directory naturally excludes a great many Catholics and Protestants, all Jews and all other non-Christians.
For this reason, the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith has filed simultaneous suits in San Francisco and Los Angeles against the Christian Yellow Pages, and in San Diego against the Christian Business Directory. The Jewish organization alleges religious discrimination and unfair business competition, on the basis of several California statutes, including the state’s civil rights act, which prohibits the refusal to engage in a business transaction on the basis of race, creed, religion, color, national origin or sex. In one suit a Roman Catholic real estate agent charges that he was refused advertising space because he would not affirm that he was a “born-again” Christian. Plaintiffs in the other two court actions are Jewish business people who make similar allegations. Robert F. Miller, attorney for the Christian Yellow Pages, insists that the directory is protected by the constitutional guarantees of freedom of press and religion.
The largest directory, the “Christian Yellow Pages”, simply inquires over the phone if someone is “Christian”–but this is largely because of a lawsuit that forced them to become more inclusive. Most are far more exclusive and require statements of faith to be agreed to.
Part II: in which we show sample “statements of faith” for some of the more popular “Christian yellow pages” directories
Quite a few smaller “Christian Yellow Pages” style directories exist, including the “Shepherd’s Guide” and the like, and it’s actually the smaller of these that get the most circulation in the dominionist community (now that it has been forced to become inclusive, many dominionists are avoiding the original “Christian Yellow Pages”). Many of these actually are also online, and require signing of statements of faith before being listed. Here’s a few examples:
To place an ad as a Christian Business with us you must be in complete agreement with our Statement of Faith and Beliefs (excepting the biblical view of baptism which is provided for the education of those who do not understand or practice biblical baptism) as well as our Family Friendly Business Agreement listed below. Share our beliefs and enjoy our services!
All other non–Christians, businesses, and organizations have to be in complete agreement with our Family Friendly Business Agreement found below the Statement Of Faith.
My Christian Yellow Pages is a ministry, and a part of Christian Ministries And Services International (christmas-intl.org), our parent Ministry.
Our Statement of Faith incorporates these
- SOLA SCRIPTURA – the scripture alone is our final authority in every area of life, because it is the Word of God;
- SOLA CHRISTI – Christ alone, in his perfect life and atoning death in the sinner’s place, is the basis for our acceptance by God;
- SOLA GRATIA – the grace of God alone in Christ, not works of human merit or effort, is how God saves sinners;
- SOLA FIDE – faith alone is the means by which sinners receive or appropriate this grace of God; and
- SOLI DEO GLORIA – to God alone be the glory for saving sinners and for everything else in this life and the life to come, eternal.
The Bible comprised only of the 66 books, is the inspired, authoritative, inerrant, and the only infallible word of God; preserved by God, and provided to mankind to educate them in God’s Word, to lead them to faith and repentance, and as a guide all true Christians should follow in daily living.
There is but one eternally existent God whom humanity knows in His three Personages: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; these three identities being descriptive of the one true God;
Jesus, God’s Son, is the human incarnation of God – Immanuel- being fully human and fully God who was: born of a virgin by the Holy Spirit, lived a sinless life, died a vicarious and atoning death as sinful mankind’s substitute, rose bodily from the grave, ascended to the right hand of the Father, and will return personally in glory for all believers;
Man was created in the image of God, but fell through sin, and, as a consequence, is lost and in need of regeneration by the Holy Spirit through faith in Jesus Christ as the personal Lord and Savior of the individual;
Salvation is a gift to the believer who has accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and any claim to salvation apart from Christ’s Lordship is false. Man cannot do anything to merit salvation. It is given freely by God through faith alone in the atoning work of Jesus Christ alone.
FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES – Baptism – The only scriptural means of baptism is by immersion as was the example of Jesus as noted in Mark 1:9 “and was was baptized of John (greek = eis ton – into) into the Jordan.” which can only be understood in this construction as being completely inside of something. Thus Jesus baptism was one in which He was placed completely inside of the Jordan or completely immersed.
We believe in the eternal security of the believer. Man can do nothing to merit salvation and can do nothing to lose their salvation. God, also being the Holy Spirit, has given Himself as a seal for our redemption. Therefore man has no power, and can do nothing, to break the seal of the Holy Spirit and lose the salvation sealed by the Lord God Himself.
The ministry of the Holy Spirit is to glorify Jesus Christ; convict mankind of their sin and unrighteousness, to bring to those who accept God’s free gift of eternal life, to empower the life of the believer; to indwell the Christian enabling him to live a Godly life in obedience to the Lordship of Jesus Christ; and to work in the individual to bring about the exercise of their spiritual gifts in order to reach unbelievers and bring them the truth of the Gospel to wit: that whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved (receive everlasting life.)
All believers will be resurrected unto eternal life, and all who reject God’s provisions of grace through Jesus Christ are lost and will be resurrected to eternal judgment; and
The unity of believers is the Body of Christ made up only of true believers who have “confessed” Jesus as Lord, not those who have merely made a profession of faith. “That If thou shalt confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and shalt believe with thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved, for with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
We believe in the body of Christ congregating on a local basis as local churches and all Christians who are able should attend, yet not at the expense of sacrificing that true faith which brings salvation and daily holiness. It is Christ who should be worshiped not the creation, the local church, or any other substitute for Christ including those who would worship a particular Bible, giving it more credence than they do Christ.
We believe in the real existence of Satan, previously one of God’s most powerful Angels, who in an attempt to become like God, became a fallen angel with great powers, who now leads an army of powerful fallen angels known as demons who constantly strive to take back control of the believer, and strives to oppose and defeat God’s plan for mankind to wit: that whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
We believe in an ardent effort to free local churches from the bondage of feminism, itself a product of demonic influence, used to control and beset the church in order to weaken the church and defeat God’s purpose for local churches; thus having rendered them of limited ability to proclaim and practice God’s commandments and lead others to do so, having exchanged the truth for a lie for the sake of numbers rather than quality of teaching as it affects women whose biblical role is clearly defined..
Men and woman should walk, talk, look, dress, and act in a way which reflects scriptures including Titus 2:3-5; Proverbs 31, and 1 Corinthians. 11 (key verses being 14-15 and 4-5). We reject as heresy that God only looks on the inside and doesn’t care about the way His children look on the outside His having given so many examples of proper dress and conduct in His Holy Word.
Christian children should be raised by faith-based parents according to biblical ideals and morals and who support the use of Faith-based education, whenever possible, that teaches Children biblical ideals and morals as well as the academics needed for productivity in life. The Christian life cannot be about a day or two, or a worship service or two. but rather an all encompassing faith that brings in line all other actions and activities..
We reject as a false and heretical concept “homosexual Christians” there being no such person. Acceptance of such, or teaching such, is a direct confirmation of any person or church, having been a false professor. The Holy Spirit prevents true believers from believing or proclaiming this blasphemous lie. Every Christian, everywhere, should do all in their ability from witnessing, to voting in political elections, to purchasing voting stock in companies in order to prevent the spread of this demonic defiance of God.
(Inclusive churches, Catholics and Orthodox churches, Mormons, Jews, and even Christian churches that don’t believe in “dunkin’ them” need not apply, in other words. We won’t even talkabout secular businesses. Women should properly be wearing dresses and we all know long hair is for girls only. If you are at all supportive of women having any role than being subservient to their husbands as “their husbands are to God” and breedin’ a quiverfull of future God-warriors, you’re part of the Satanic Conspiracy (TINSC).)
Christian and Non-Christian Businesses who wish to use our services must be a Family Friendly business that promotes traditional family values; that does not promote, or condone individuals, organizations, or other businesses that help promote gambling, feminism, abortion, racism of any kind including reverse discrimination, or homosexuality, (including same sex partners legislation or any other form of sexual deviancy including bi-sexuality, transgender, bestiality etc., or anti-traditional marriage activities.)
Disqualifying affiliations include support for the homosexual and abortion agenda of N.O.W. (National Organization for Women), Planned Parenthood, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Girl Scouts (polytheistic & supporters of homosexuality), and Girls Inc, as these organizations are committed to teaching our children to accept the gay and lesbian lifestyle and also support abortion
Socialist Agenda. You may not sponsor or promote socialism or the socialist agenda being advanced to destroy Godliness in America including organizations such as ACLU, People for Separation of Church and State, People For The American Way (PAW), or other Godless Socialist organizations, or vote for those who support their Socialist agenda.
Godless Socialism is even now on the verge of reality under the guise of Democratic “liberalism”. The Democratic party’s use of the words “liberal” and “liberalism” are simply catch phrases of socialists who are desperately trying to take over America as evidenced by their vicious angry vitriol against centrist capitalists who socialists repeatedly refer to as right wing, right wing ideologues, or neo-cons, all catch words used to attack those who support a capitalist America based on the Christian principles upon which she was founded.
Read what one Socialist Democrat Said:
Norman Thomas, Socialist and member of the Civil Liberties Union, boldly told the world: “The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism, but under the name of liberalism, they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program until one day America will be a Socialist nation without ever knowing how it happened.”
YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!
Further, A family friendly business is one who promotes the highest level of moral development and support for children, and who supports faith-based education, whenever possible, that teaches children traditional family values and strong moral values. It is not necessary for the children of Family Friendly Businesses to have their children enrolled in faith based education. For your children’s sake though, we highly recommend it, since statistics show consistently that children schooled in faith based education schools including homeschools, tend to do better than the national average at every level of education, social development skills, and later in life, leadership skills due to a better ability to engage in positive inter-personal communications
Violation of this Agreement will result in the immediate suspension of your involvement with us, or services we provide, pending inquiry, and termination of your account if it is found the individual, busineses, or organization has violated the agreement with no refund even if refunds would otherwise be available.
All individual, busineses, or organizations are encouraged to use extreme caution when getting involved in banner exchanges. The are the most overlooked causes of violations. Before committing to any banner advertising you should get in writing that they do no allow banners which would violate this agreement.
Here is a sample paragraph you can use to get the Banner exchange (or any other advertising source for that matter) to tell you in writing that they do not promote, or condone individuals, organizations, or other businesses that help promote gambling, feminism, abortion, racism of any kind including reverse discrimination, or homosexuality, (including same sex partners legislation or any other form of sexual deviancy including bi-sexuality, transgender, bestiality etc., or anti-traditional marriage activities.)racism, reverse discrimination or Socialism
(Businesses that support Fairness ordinances, are not members of the Republican or Constitution Parties (the Democratic Party is commonly demonised as “socialist” and is actually explicitly listed as Communist here), card-carrying ACLU members, probably everyone who reads this community, and they really recommend if you’re listed that you have your kids using A Beka or Bob Jones University. Just in case, you know.)
(As a minor aside, the objection to “Girls, Inc.” is increasingly common–in fact, “parallel economy” alternatives to both the dolls and to Scouting in general exist in the dominionist community. More on these later in the series.)
(And mind, this is just to be listed.)
Many of the advertisers listed herein have signed the following statement of faith, and some requested a fish or cross to be placed nest to their listing. “I testify that I am a Christian who loves and serves Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the Lord of my life, and I affirm that I operate my business, to the best of my ability, according to Biblical principles.”
(This sort of “statement of faith” is typical of “Christian yellow pages” directories with more liberal policies, but very often moderate Christians and Catholics are still rejected.)
This article gives info on another directory, the Christian Blue Pages, as well as a second directory in Indianapolis; dominionist groups there are even trying to set up a “parallel economy” chamber of commerce where non-dominionists need not apply.
Per the article, non-dominionists need not apply to be listed in the “Christian Blue Pages”:
To be able to buy an ad in his company’s Christian business directory, business owners must acknowledge that they accept Jesus as their personal savior, strive to operate according to Christian principles and regularly attend church, which Jurgens’ office verifies with churches themselves.
(By checking with churches, this is a common way dominionist groups eliminate non-dominionists.)
As it turns out, the Christian Blue Pages does have a website, and you can browse their statement of faith:
The Chief Executive Officer…
i…believes Jesus Christ is the son of God and has personally accepted His gift of salvation.
ii…believes the Bible is God’s inspired revelation to man and endeavors to live in obedience to its principles and commands.
iii…is a member in good standing in a local church and supports the work of Christ through the church by his time, talents and financial resources.
The Chief Executive Officer strives through the company…
i…to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with its employees and also its customers, competitors, suppliers and other business contacts.
ii…to take an active part in the development of the spiritual life and Christian testimony of its employees.
iii…to operate in accordance with the commands and principles of Scripture in dealing with its finances, in handling its personnel, and in administering its policies.
iv…to give regularly a portion of its financial and personnel resources in meeting various Christian responsibilities in accordance with Scripture. This pertains to the needs of its employees as well as others, and may be accomplished through direct gifts or through contributions to agencies and ministries.
i…there is one God, eternally existing in three persons: The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
ii…the Bible is God’s written and inspired revelation to man and is the primary authority for man’s life.
iii…the deity of Jesus Christ, His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, death on the cross to provide for our redemption, resurrection, bodily ascension into heaven, present ministry of intercession for us, and His return to earth in power and glory.
iv…the personality and deity of the Holy Spirit, His power to perform the miracle of the new birth in unbelievers and to indwell believers, enabling them to live a godly life.
v…man was created in the image of God, and because of sin was alienated from God – that alienation can be removed only by accepting, through faith, God’s gift of salvation which was made possible by Christ’s atoning death and resurrection.
vi…Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church, and all believers are to assemble together regularly for worship, for edification through the scriptures, and for mutual encouragement.
vii…Jesus Christ commanded all believers to proclaim the Gospel throughout the world and to disciple men of every nation. The fulfillment of that Great Commission requires that all worldly and personal ambitions be subordinated to a total commitment to “Him who loved us and gave Himself for us.”
(Again, non-dominionists need not apply, and we will make sure you’re giving tithes and “seed faith offerings” to your local dominionist church from your business profits.)
In fact, there’s a mess of these directories with links online; the directory I mentioned that is promoted by the group I walked away from, the “Shepherd’s Guide”, is also online. Their statement of faith that they require advertisers to sign and return:
I have received Jesus Christ as my personal Savior, and my desire is to live my life for His Glory. I have been born again according to John 3:3 which states, “…except a man be born again, he cannot see the Kingdom of God.” I pledge to hold the highest Biblical code of ethics in my transactions. It is my ambition to treat my clients with the utmost respect and integrity.
(Yes, you have to specifically be a fundamentalist or pentecostal. Again, moderate Christians and Catholics need not apply here.)
One “Christian yellow pages” directory actually admits explicitly (via scripture-twisting) as to why they run the directory, in the mandatory statement of faith included in their contract:
We would pray and have faith for the types of Christian individuals and Corporate executives that we are attracting through EnterGlobe and its affiliated sites.
As we believe in 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 “Do not be yoked together with unbelievers”.
Yet another online directory of “christian businesses” requires a dominionist statement of faith to be signed:
Statement of Faith
We believe in the TRINITY (1 John 5:7). One means Unity. It is not referring to a number nor to a position. They are God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. All of the Three are supreme. We believe in One LORD or One GOD. We accept the Hebrew rendering of God as ELOAH in the singular, and ELOHIM in the plural. We are Biblical Trinitarians. We reject the ONENESS and the PAGANISTIC TRI-THEISM beliefs.
We believe that Jesus Christ is God’s Son; therefore, He is God. (Col. 2:9) and that all the fullness of the Godhead dwelleth in Him; that He is eternal and therefore existed before His incarnation (John 1:1, 8:58), that He was born of a virgin (Luke 1:35), that in Him was no sin (I John 3:5), that His death on Calvary’s cross is the only means of man’s redemption, being set forth in Scripture as a ransom (1Peter 1:18, Gal. 3:13), as a propitiation (Rom. 3:25), as a reconciliation (Rom. 5:10), and as a substitution (Isa. 53:6, 1Peter 2:24, 3:18), in His bodily resurrection from the dead (Acts 2:32, 36, John. 20:6-7), in His ascension into Heaven (Acts 1:9), in His presence at God’s right hand (Eph. 1:20), as our intercessor (Rom. 8:34), an advocate (1John 2:1), in His personal, pre-millennial and imminent two phased return. The first part is secret (1 Thess. 4:16-17). And the second part is His coming for Armageddon (Revelation 19:11-14).
We believe in the personality and deity of the Holy Ghost, who convicts, regenerates, illuminates, indwells, sanctifies, comforts, and abides forever (John 16:8, I Cor. 3:16). We believe that the gifts of tongues, which Biblically are known languages have ceased in operation.
We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God, but that in Adam’s sin the human race fell, inherited a sinful nature, and became alienated from God; and, although man is depraved, he is not totally depraved. He has a “WILL” the capacity to choose and to make a decision. He would either go to heaven or hell depending on his own choice.
We believe in the personality of Satan (Job 1:6-7, John 8:44) who is condemned to everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord (Matt. 25:41, Rev. 20:10, Gen. 3:14-15) along with those who reject God’s way of salvation.
We believe that God has spoken and that the Bible is the divine, verbally inspired progressive revelation from God (II Tim. 3:16-17, II Peter 1:20-21). We believe that the King James Version, 1611, also known as the Authorized Version, is God’s preserved Word for English speaking people, according to Psalm 12:6-7 and Matthew 24:35. We also believe that the Textus Receptus is God’s Word and to be used when referring to the Greek for the New Testament and the Masorretic Text is to used when referring to the Hebrew in the Old Testament.
We believe in the Church which is a spiritual organism made up of believers who are united by the Holy Ghost to the Risen and Ascended Son of God. It is set forth in Scripture as the body of which Christ is the head (Eph. 1:22-23, Col. 1:18, 2:19), the temple or building of which Christ is the Chief Cornerstone (Eph 2:20-21), (I Cor. 3:9-17). We believe in the autonomy of the local church free of any external authority or control (Acts 13:1-4, 15:19-31; 20:28; Rom. 16:1, 4; I Cor. 3:9, 16; 5:4-7, 13; 1Peter 5:1-4).
We believe that a person can only be saved when he repents from his wrong beliefs (Acts 17:29-30) about God, and when he believes on the Lord (Acts 16:30-31), and when he calls for help (Rom. 10:13).
We believe that each member of the church is called into a life of separation from all worldly and practices (James 4:4, I Jn. 2:15-16, II Cor. 6:14-18) into a life of consecration to God (Rom. 12:1-2); into a life of witnessing unto Christ, proclaiming the Gospel unto the uttermost parts of the earth (Acts 1:8); and to systematically and proportionately contribute to the support of the local church according to the principle laid down in Malachi 3:8-11 and I Cor. 16:2. We believe the ordinances of the church are Baptism by immersion as a mark of our identification with Christ in His death and resurrection (Rom. 6:4) and the Lord’s Supper, remembering the Lord’s death until He comes. We believe that the ministry of the church is two-fold; evangelization and edification, winning the sinner and teaching the saints.
We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity should be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. We believe that any form of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery and pornography are sinful perversions of God’s gift of sex (Gen. 2:24; Gen. 19:5, 13; Gen 26:8-9; Lev. 18:1-30; Rom 1:26-29; I Cor. 5:1; 6:9; I Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4).
We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder. We reject any teaching that abortions of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the mental well-being of the mother are acceptable (Job 3:16; Psalms 51:5; 139:14-16; Jer. 1:5; Luke 1:44).
We believe that God has ordained and created all authority consisting of three basic institutions: 1) the home; 2) the Church; and 3) the state. Every person is subject to these authorities, but all including the authorities themselves) are answerable to God and governed by His Word. God has given each institution specific Biblical responsibilities and balanced those responsibilities with the understanding that no institution has the right to infringe upon the other. The home, the Church, and the state are equal and sovereign in their respective Biblically assigned spheres of responsibility under God. (Rom 13:1-7; Eph. 22:24; Heb. 13:17; I Pet. 2:13-14).
We believe that all the saved should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Saviour and Lord; and, that separation from all religious apostasy, all worldly and sinful pleasures, practices and associations is commanded of God (Rom 12:1-2, 14:13; II Cor. 6:14-7:1; II Tim. 3:1-5; I John 2:15-17; II John 9-11).
(This one is particularly interesting. Not only do we have a lot of scripture-twisting justifying the existence of the dominionist “parallel economy” (in the sense of “separating from all things worldly”), but there are hints they believe in the distinctly pentecostal version of the “Harrowing of Christ” (aka Jesus died and went to hell for three days after he was crucified), “oneness” churches (not just including Oneness Pentecostals but also Unitarians) are excluded, you are likely disqualified if you read “Playboy”, pharmacies that even dispense the birth control pill are excluded (due to the dominionist canard that the birth control pill is an abortifacent), are apparently King James Only (an interesting belief in a lot of pentecostal and “fundamentalist Baptist” groups that teaches the KJV, or sometimes the NIV as well, are the only two correct translations of the Bible–a church being KJV is a dead giveaway they are fundamentalist and likely dominionist as well), and are apparently even a little bit explicitly dominionist.)
Yes, these types of statements of faith are typical, as you’re seeing.
And lest one doubt these are dominionist supporters, here’s a bit of info from the Presbyterian Church USA article on links between dominionism and the first of the “Christian business directories”:
Davidson suggested that there is an even more disturbing aspect to the enterprises: “For those who may wish to establish a financial and political as well as religious base across the nation, this kind of thing is a useful but subtle and insidious device. He noted that the San Diego operation is linked with the California Christian Campaign Committee, which seeks to elect Christians to public office. Dan Loeffler, president of the firm that publishes the Christian Business Directory, is executive director of CCCC.
Just as disturbing, some of the businesses promoted in these directories include “Christian Counseling” groups, including facilities targeting parents with teenagers.
So…needless to say, these “Christian business directories” are quite squarely aimed at the dominionist community.
Part III: In which we show how to use these directories to hamstring dominionists in your local community
Of course, what’s good for the goose is also good for the gander. The same guides that dominionists use to know which are “Christian Businesses” can be used by anti-dominionists to know what businesses to boycott and to warn their friends NOT to do business with. (As I’ve noted here, not only do most of these businesses list themselves fully aware of what they are supporting, quite a few of these directories require specifically dominionist statements of faith and some even check with businessowners’ churches to make sure a tenth of the profits are being donated to the church–so this is also a very valuable guide to know who your localbusiness supporters of dominionism are.)
Most of these guides are either online or will happily send a copy on request–and most of the businesses listed in these directories, as well as dominionist churches, happily hand these out with exhortations to “do business with those of like faith”.
Yes, indeed, you too can use one of the weapons of dominionism against itself–use their own “Christian business directories” as your handy boycott guide. :3 Be sure to publicise the statements of faith required for listing in these directories, be sure to point out that these businesses generally know darn well what they’re supporting.
If the main “Christian yellow pages” directories in your area are highly exclusionist (a la mychristianyellowpages.com), then be sure to especially publicise this–to sympathetic media, if necessary. Inform mainstream Christian churches and other religious congregations; as I’ve noted, at least one mainstream Christian group (the Presbyterian Church, for one, has warned about promotion of “Christian Yellow Pages” style guides, and other mainstream churches will likely disagree with them once they see the mandatory statements of faith).
Also, indirectly, this also gives a list of dominionist churches. Some directories explicitly list churches; the “Shepherd’s Guide” for Louisville includes a listing for the specific group I walked away from and in fact is almost totally dominated by dominionist churches (the local Unholy Trinity of Evangel World Prayer Center, Southeast Christian, and Highview Baptist are listed as well as a smattering of smaller dominionist churches).
The Shepherd’s Guide in particular is a nationwide publisher of “Christian Yellow Pages” directories and has local directories in many areas–so the “churches” section could be especially useful info for your metro area as to what churches are in fact dominionist (and which ones to watch for electioneering law violations, etc.) (And just as a test, it turns out that the Shepherd’s Guide is also the guide used by New Life Church in Colorado Springs, and is in turn advertised in the guide.)
Quite a number of dominionist churches also hand these out, too. It’s a safe bet that most churches handing out these should be watched very carefully.
Another clue is the promotion of dominionist media companies–among others, the radio station belonging to the dominionist church I walked away from is prominently advertised. If a church is handing these out, you can mark this down as a church to watch for tax law violations and illegal electioneering.
We will continue the series tomorrow with a look at explicitly dominionist businesses; part 3 will cover the “medical parallel economy” (focusing on a player in a recent EEOC case who turns out to be a major part of the parallel economy in its area); part 4 will cover the “parallel media”; part 5 will cover alternatives to Scouting and conventional schooling, and part 6 will cover a dominionist “parallel economy” alternative to Girls, Inc.–no, not even children’s dolls are “safe”.