August 2015

Following is the e-mail that I received from the last Church Linda and I were members of.  I received this on September 25, 2012 after I had sent them an email informing them of our intentions to be back in services after the current pastor resigned.  He was supposed to resign in October 2012.

(words in italics are from the original e-mail, words in bold are mine to explain certain parts that would otherwise be unclear to the reader)

Dear Ron and Linda:

Greetings to you in Jesus name. I trust that all is well with each of you. This Email is in response to your recent Email, part of which was to inform us that you have plans in the future of returning to Victory Heights.

On Sunday, September 23, 2012, in our regular evening service the church met in a special session to discuss your past, present and future membership with our church.

Linda and I had been members of VHBC since 2005.  As members, we should have been informed of the meeting so that we could attend and defend our views with Scripture.  We were not afforded this privilege that even criminals in our court systems are afforded. 

Because of your relentless actions of the past four months 

Our actions were speaking truth in public (on our Facebook pages and in the community around us, not within the four walls of the organization doing business as Victory Heights Baptist Church of Cleveland, MS

and your UN-Christ like attitude

Haven’t figured out where the accusation of ‘UN-Christlike attitude’ came from yet.  We did not realize it was un-Christlike to speak truth.

and your public display of your disagreement with Scriptural tithing for Christians,

What we were teaching was exactly what the Bible says concerning tithes… that God’s Word says His holy tithe was agricultural, (Leviticus 27:30-33) that it was for the Levites, widows, orphans and strangers in Israel, (Leviticus 27:34; Numbers 18:24-26; Deuteronomy 14:22-29; Deuteronomy 26:12)  Everything we were teaching then about tithing, and are still teaching to this date, is backed up perfectly with the Word of God.  So, I don’t understand why it is considered to be “against Scriptural tithing” by Victory Heights Baptist Churchit was decided by a unanimous decision by all in attendance, to ask the two of you to voluntarily withdraw your membership from our church.

Again, as long-standing members, we should have been afforded the opportunity to attend this meeting.  Had we been informed, we would have attended and presented Scripture that proves our stance.

Should you fail to notify us within the next seven days of your intentions, it has been decided that we will remove you with or without your consent. This means of course that you have no rights whatsoever as a member to voice your opinion or to have a vote on any matter.

We replied to the email with our defense, giving every Scripture that had to do with tithing.  Keith Kendall, the man who sent us the excommunication email, rejected those Scriptures, writing back his argument which basically put the New Testament Church in ancient Israel and under the Mosaic Law of tithing.  Funny thing, he had no valid explanation as to when God gave permission for anyone to take a tithe of money to a fellowship of Gentile Believers.

It is evident by your public display of your disagreement with our Scriptural teaching and stand on tithing, that you do not agree with us on this matter.

Their teaching on tithing is that God requires us to tithe our earnings and income to the Church.  They claim it is Scriptural.  Yet, if one does a search through their Bibles, one will not find such a requirement or instruction for the New TEstament Church.  The children of Israel were given the command to tithe agricultural increase, but there is no such command for the Church.  Even in the last place tithing is commanded, Hebrews 7:5-8, it is still “according to the Law” and still for the “sons of Levi”.

Your public display of calling us extortioners and you writing and talking to church members and asking them to believe what you believe is a clear cut action on your part to cause division among the brethren.

Concerning the ‘extortioners’ remark, I never once named Victory Heights Baptist Church.  I had written an article on my Facebook page about extortion, (which also can be found on this blog) which revealed that when pastors use guilt and fear tactics to manipulate their members into tithing, that by the legal definition written in our U.S. Government’s laws, is extortion.  Again, there is no mention of any specific Church in the article, so the accusation levied against me must be because they are using an old smokescreen and deception tactic… “When you can’t disprove the message with Scripture, attack the messenger.”

Writing and talking to Church members, telling them to believe what I believe.  This argument is only partially right.  The part that is right is the “talking” part.  I have never written to members of Victory Heights Baptist Church concerning the tithe, to my recollection.  I always talked to member of VHBC openly and face to face,… and that has only been about 6 members while traveling down the road.  I have never spoken about the tithe on Church property.

Also, concerning telling them to believe like I believe, that is misleading to say the least.  I always told them not to believe me just because I said something, but rather to get their Bibles and look up the Scriptures for themselves.  I always told them to be as the Bereans of Acts 17.

In Romans 16: 17,18 we are told to mark them which cause division and to avoid them. According to 1Corinthians 5:11 the Christian is told not to keep companywith or not to even eat with a person who is, among other things, a railer. A railer is one who treats others with contemptuous language. Once again it can not be denied that you  are guilty of doing just this.

I used contemptuous language?  Really?  By using Scripture?  Obviously an accusation has been levied against me that is unnecessary, uncalled for, and untrue.  The e-mail said I was causing division, yet the funny thing is, the votes against me were unanimous and saving one member thatmoved to another town after the house she was living in was sold by the owner, all the members that I spoke to about what the Bible says about God’s holy tithe are still members of the Church…. So how could have the truth I spoke caused divisions?.  One would think that if i was causing division, the vote would not have been unanimous.  eh?

It is the consent of the church to withdraw fellowship form the two of you unless you publicly apologize and repent of your actions. Unless youare willing to do so, we will certainly withdraw all fellowship from you until such a time that you do. This is the only way that you could ever become a part of this local assembly once again. 

Publicly apologize?  For what?  Teaching the Truth as it is written in God’s Holy Word?  Repent?  of what?  Teaching that  there is not one Scripture in the entire Bible that says money is to be tithed by Gentile Believers in Christ to an organization doing business as a Church ?  We will never do so.    Revelation 22:15 states that among those found outside of God’s kingdom are those who make and love lies.  For us to deny the truth that God has revealed to us through His Spirit and the reading of His Holy Word, would put us among those who love lies.  This is why we will never agree with VHBC’s unScriptural teaching of the monetary tithe requirement doctrine.
Remember that this is a decision of all the members who were in attendance at this meeting and not the decision of one or two people.The church was unanimous in its decision! Waiting for your response.
Keith Kendall
Victory Heights Baptist Church

Cleveland MS.

In closing, VHBC claimed that my actions were unBiblical and my teachings unScriptural.  They are not.  It is evident by the wording of the e-mail that the actions of the Church were unBiblical. 

For instance, the Bible says, “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.”  (Galatians 6:1)  If the members of VHBC felt that I was in error, according this this verse they are to come to me and to restore me in the spirit of meekness.  Or are they sending a message that they are not spiritual enough to correct one who is in error? 

The Members have the attitude that we are wrong, and will not be allowed to speak with me on the matter.  When leadership of a religious organization dictates who its members can and cannot speak to, that is the signs of a cult, is it not?  When it forbids truth to be spoken by outside influence, is that not cultic? 

One last thought, the I was accused of “causing division”.  Psalm 133:1 says, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!:”  And this is true.  However, I am sure that God would be more pleased with one divided by truth than united in error.  I will not re-unite with VHBC while they are in error.

What’s Wrong With Our Churches?
by Ronald W Robey

Sadly, we have in our churches today, preachers who preach opinion rather than what the Word of God says. And many in our congregations, because they don’t study the Word except through the tainted lenses of man-made religion, fall prey to the deception and manipulation they hear week in and week out.

Many women are made to believe that unless you wear a dress, never cut your hair, etc., you are not walking in holiness, or you are not displaying modesty.

It is this type of Pharisaical, judgmental condemnation that causes many a young lady that needs to hear the Gospel to turn a deaf ear to it instead. There are many who believe that a dress on a woman shows that the woman is a Christian. This is pure foolish thinking, and reveals that they do not even know what a true Christian is. Such thinking reminds me of the self-righteous Pharisee in the Parable of Luke 18, who pointed a condemning finger at one who didn’t meet his standards. He thought he was right in God’s eyes. Yet, his heart was deceitful and desperately wicked. Many, like he, think outward appearance and actions prove their right-standing with God. Yet, while the outside of the cup is clean, the inside is full of abominable pride and hatred.

Many men of the churches are no better. They too, show little or no concern when error is taught from the pulpit. We have men in the pews who have professed Christ for decades who know so little Scripture that they couldn’t spot false doctrine if their lives depended on it. And so, they are often led into error by the hirelings they choose to lead them.

What’s wrong with our churches? Deceitful leaders, led by tradition rather than by truth; and laity on a kindergarten level, because they have not been taught how to study properly so that they can discern error.