In the Money: County Missionary David Franklin Endorses Rowland Springs Baptist Church

“I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,’ and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see. Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.” Jesus Christ

David Franklin is the associational missionary for the Bartow Baptist Association (BBA). He is well-known around Cartersville as a force for good as is informally and amicably referred to as a member of the local “Christian mafia”. He might be the most well-connected Christian in the entire community. If you are a Baptist in Bartow County there is a good chance that you have seen David Franklin fill the pulpit of your local church on a Sunday morning. Under his leadership, the BBA has implemented the annual SPLASH Bartow local missions initiative as well as seen increased local church cooperation across racial lines. Franklin is very respected among Bartow County’s religious leaders. I personally have benefited from his insight into Baptist life. That is why it was so disappointing to see Franklin endorse Rowland Springs Baptist Church (RSBC) in an effusive Google review. RSBC is dangerously compromised by the influence of the cult of Freemasonry and counts several Masons among its membership. Three of the current officers of Cartersville Masonic Lodge #63 are members of RSBC. Because of its toleration for Masonry, RSBC has gotten several negative reviews on Google. I can only imagine the negative feedback is what inspired Franklin to add his own.

In his Google review of RSBC, David had the following to say:

Rowland Springs is a warm and loving church that is committed to being an Acts 1:8 church. The church is involved from locally to around the world in sharing the good news of Christ and meeting people where they are. They have been really engaged locally in various ministries from feeding and clothing the hungry and poor to helping people with house repairs to helping in our local schools and more. I get to work with them with SPLASH Bartow and more and they are great. Also, I personally have worked with a young minister and a missionary that God is using (mightily) that has come out of Rowland Springs. The people at the church are loving and genuine. Pastor Joe is a great guy that is a faithful pastor. His family is strong. If you are looking for a church that faithfully follows the Bible and Jesus check out Rowland Springs – David Franklin

franklin endorse

As a Spirit-filled Christian and former member of Rowland Springs Baptist Church, I can tell you, authoritatively, that many of these statements are not accurate. Rowland Springs indeed feeds and clothes the hungry and poor. However, this should be expected among all Christ’s churches. Rowland Springs is only “warm and loving” to guests and members inasmuch they adhere to its culture of silent conformance and its toleration of syncretistic religion. Rowland Springs is exactly the kind of church that looks clean on the outside (nice building, smiling-people, inviting events) but is rotten on the inside. It is the epitome of a “white-washed tomb”.

A former member once relayed this to me about RSBC and its Pastor Joe Ringwalt:

I grew up at Rowland Springs. Joe Ringwalt was a very much, don’t step on toes, kind of preacher…Rowland Springs had a lot of “old money” and he worried about making them upset. There isn’t much discipline that I ever saw, and Joe will rarely step on anyone’s toes with a sermon.

I experienced Joe Ringwalt’s fear of man and love of money first hand when I asked him to stand against Freemasonry at RSBC. “If I go against Freemasonry, I’ll get fired,” Joe sheepishly told me. He said this not six months removed from coming into my living room to prospect me as a church member and telling me that he did not support the Masonic Lodge.

Since I respected and trusted him, David Franklin was one of the first men I went to for help when my own pastor, Joe Ringwalt, refused to take a stand against the evil, demonic cult that permeated the church of which Joe Ringwalt had been pastor for twenty years. I thought Joe might listen to an older, experienced minister like David over a younger fire brand like me. Unfortunately, David was of no help to me. When I called him, Franklin told me that he didn’t know any Baptist Masons in Bartow County (I made him aware of eight at Rowland Springs!) and that Masonry was not as big of a problem as it used to be. As it turns out, there are least two Masonic members of Franklin’s own church. Masons have permeated Bartow Baptist Church’s for years. Like so many other Bartow Baptists, Franklin, who constantly preaches and prays for revival, seemed unconcerned about the Masons in our midst.

I was eventually excommunicated from Rowland Springs Baptist Church. A special church conference was called for the sole purpose of doing so. The only non-church-member present at the meeting was Joel Thortnon, a lawyer who works for the Bartow Baptist Association. I later learned that none other than David Franklin himself was on the church campus. Franklin waited in a back office, his lawyer observing the proceedings, while my church removed me from membership for calling sinners to repent.

Why would Franklin do such a thing? Why would Franklin leave such a positive review for a church he knows to be compromised by a cult and a hireling pastor? I searched the Google reviews of several prominent Bartow Baptist Churches, including Franklin’s own, and could not find a single other church for which he left a review. So, why Rowland Springs?

The answer may very well lie in the money. RSBC dedicates roughly 2% of it’s annual budget of ~$600,000 as a gift to David Franklin’s Bartow Baptist Association. The 2018 budgeted donation from RSBC to the Bartow Baptist Association was over $14,000.

bba budget

There is an old axiom that says, “You get what you pay for.” When will God’s people finally learn that Christ’s blood-bought church doesn’t need money to be successful? Only when pastors and Christian leaders prioritize holiness instead of attendance numbers and bank balances will revival come to their stagnant churches.

“Give me one hundred preachers who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and I care not whether they be clergymen or laymen, they alone will shake the gates of Hell and set up the kingdom of Heaven upon Earth.” John Wesley

To learn more about Freemasonry and how it conflicts with Christianity, you may read my new book Christianity and the Craft. If you are local to Bartow, I currently have about 50 copies at my house to give away.

https://read.amazon.com/kp/card?asin=B07JY7Y1GY&preview=inline&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_iF71BbSJNZG31

You may also want to read my book about Baptist Stewardship, The Cooperative Program and the Road to Serfdom.

https://read.amazon.com/kp/card?asin=B07DMZL887&preview=inline&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_fF71Bb57A5C02

*Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

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Bad News Beth

The English term “evangelize” is derived from the Greek term εὐαγγελίζω.  Christians use the term “evangelize” to describe the Christ-mandated action of sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with others: His atoning death for sin, His burial, His resurrection, and His impending return.  Literally, to evangelize is to share the good news.  In fact, the Greek word εὐαγγέλιον, which is translated to English as “gospel” means good news.   That’s what the gospel is, it’s the good news.  By it’s nature it can’t be anything else.  The effect of the gospel is broad and yet simple:  the world is saved from the deleterious effects of sin.  Individual believers who accept the gospel message are saved from the wrath of God.  They are redeemed from their sin and proclaimed righteous in Jesus Christ.  They are citizens of a Heavenly kingdom and will live with their Lord in a renewed Heaven and Earth.

That renewed creation has not yet come.  Until it does, the creation groans.  Poverty and injustice remain ever-present in a fallen world.  Thus the temptation to turn the good news of Jesus Christ into a message of social renewal in the current world remains an ever-present tool of the devil, especially as society becomes more dedicated to the unbiblcal notions of humanism, scientism, evolutionism, and cultural marxism.  This perversion of the gospel is known as the “social gospel.”  Unfortunately, it is getting more and more popular among professing evangelicals and their institutions.  As broader evangelicalism takes a leftward turn towards advocating social justice, observers can expect to see its book-sellers and conference speakers turn with it.

America’s most popular Bible teacher, Beth Moore, may have just veered in that leftward direction:

Beth Moore’s exasperating comment carries with it a heavy “social gospel” undertone.  The irony of her statement is that she has long made a living partnering with those who pervert the gospel in an entirely different direction.  Beth Moore has long been a friend to Joel Osteen, Joyce Meyer, Christine Caine and others who preach that Jesus came and died to make people rich.  Now, the well heeled Moore, seems to be preaching against privilege.

Pastors and the husbands of Beth Moore’s legions of fans would do well to refamiliarize themselves with the words the Lord Jesus Christ read from the scriptures when he proclaimed his Messianic anointing to his hometown synagogue:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor.
He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives,
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set free those who are oppressed,
To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.”

Jesus came neither to make individuals materially wealthy (the prosperity gospel) nor to evenly distribute the wealth of earthly societies (the social gospel).  Jesus came to save us from our sins.  The further we get away from that, (the true gospel) the further we get away from His Father.

https://podomatic.com/embed/html5/episode/7931956?autoplay=false

*Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

 

An Open Letter to Lauren Daigle

Dear Lauren,

As I understand it you are a recording artist that is a Christian who sometimes sings songs of a religious nature. You even have a new “Christian” album that recently debuted. I saw that you caught some flack for going on the Ellen DeGeneres’ show and singinga song about the Lord. Your doing so caused some bit of controversy because Ellen very publically engages in the sin of homosexuality. You were recently asked if you thought homosexuality was a sin. Here’s what you had to say:

“I can’t say one way or the other, I’m not God. When people ask questions like that, I just say, ‘Read the Bible and find out for yourself. And when you find out let me know because I’m learning too,’” she added.

Well, I am not God. I am truly (not almost) human. I can, however, say whether not something is a sin. In fact, Jesus Himself (who is truly God and truly human) instructed me to do so. He said:

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Homosexuality is a sin. You don’t have to be God to say so. You just have to know His word. So, having read the Bible, I am fulfilling your request to let you know (and wondering why your pastor and church haven’t told you). I want to remind you of another statement you made when asked if homosexuality was a sin:

“I can’t honestly answer on that, in the sense of I have too many people that I love and they are homosexuals.”

Everyone you love is a sinner, Lauren, every last one of them. If you love them then you will do your Christian duty and call them to repent of their sin. It was out of love that God sent his precious son Jesus to die on the cross. Jesus died on the cross so that people who believe in Him could be reconciled to His Father. The loving reaction to sin, for you, is to call people to repent of it. If you love your (homosexual) friends you will ask them to turn from their sins and turn towards Jesus. If no one tells them they are in sin, how will they even know that they need to turn?

Sincerely,

Seth Dunn

*Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

Beth Moore and the Black Sheep

The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) is in crisis.  It’s dying out.  I mean that quite literally.  The old white people who line the pews of the typical SBC church are dying.  Dead people don’t tithe.  Dead people don’t shop at LifeWay.  This has already been recognized by those at the top of the economic heap in the SBC, those who most benefit from the millions of dollars given and spent by Southern Baptists every year.  In order to stay in the green, SBC leaders recognize that they must reach outside of the white.  Make no mistake, this is not a matter of spirituality, it’s a matter of cold, hard cash and marketing demographics.  Historically, the SBC has not received much money from black people.   Currently, church attendance among whites is trending downward while black and Hispanic church attendance rates are holding somewhat steady.  Thus, a concerted effort to encourage people of color to participate in SBC life has been launched.  It’s not by accident that Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary has a “Kingdom Diversity” office.   It’s not coincidental that the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission has held a “Racial Reconciliation” conference.   It’s no surprise that Beth Moore, the unofficial first lady of the SBC and one of LifeWay’s most popular authors, is now tweeting that skin color is relevant when it comes to book authorship.  In a response to a tweet inquiring about influential theological books, Moore had the following response:

 

According to Beth Moore, the race of a book’s author is theologically relevant.  Do you agree with Beth?  Was the dark skin of Athanasius relevant to his defense of the eternality of Christ?  Is City of God more or less insightful because Augustine was African.  Was the bondage of Martin Luther’s will any worse because he was a Caucasian German?  Did the whiteness  of John Calvin’s white hands affect the insights of the Institutes of Christian Religion?  Are Beth Moore’s books any less banal for being written by a blonde-haired white lady from Texas?  Does her skin color reflect positively or negatively on her endorsement of Priscilla Shirer, who happens to be black?

It doesn’t seem like race is a primary issue for Mrs. Shirer.

Jesus, whatever color his hands may have been (tan, I imagine) didn’t write any books.  The guys who wrote about him, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John were inspired by the Holy Spirit.  I don’t care what color they were, they were inspired by the Holy Spirit, who has no skin of which to speak.  When it comes down to it, God sees our insides.  No matter our skin color, we are either black as sin on the inside or washed white as snow by the red blood of Jesus Christ.  God descended to Earth in human form.  He lived his life as a Jewish man.  His blood ran as red as any Caucasian, black, Asian, or Hispanic.  His blood paid for the sins of any who would believe in Him, Jew or Gentile.  For Beth Moore to make theological truth about race is to do a great disservice to her devoted readership.

Sadly, this is just more race-baiting from an SBC big shot.  It’s one more black spot on the SBC’s long history of abysmal race-relations.    Maybe one day, Beth Moore, JD Greear, Danny Akin, Dwight McKissic, and their ilk will repent of letting race get in the way of gospel proclamation.  Southern Baptists would do well to remember that justice begins in the household of God.  Does our Heavenly Father, who has adopted us as sons and daughters through our Lord Jesus Christ, really care about the color of the hands who glorify him through writing?

For those of you who are considering going to the next Beth Moore conference, I offer you a preview of the theological depth which you can expect:

*Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

 

H.B. Charles, Jr and Shiloh Church Dishonor the Poor

Pastor H.B. Charles of Shiloh Church in Jacksonville, Florida is a sought after preacher on the evangelical speaking circuit and a featured contributor to LifeWay Sunday School publications. His 10th Anniversary as pastor of Shiloh Church is to be specially recognized during Sunday services on November 11th. This special recognition follows a black-tie banquet that was held in his honor this Friday. The banquet was advertised on the church’s website as follows:

On Friday, November 9th, join us for a black-tie banquet in honor of Pastor Charles and family, Please visit the Eventbrite page regarding purchasing a table, ticket or ad space in the commemorative souvenir booklet.

Tickets to this church event could be purchased for $50. Tables were available for purchase as well. A reserved table could be purchased for $450; the price of a “VIP” table was $500.

The existence of this expensive price list begs the question, “Who is a VIP in the body of the local church?” To answer this question, we should turn to the Bible:

My brethren, do not hold your faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ with an attitude of personal favoritism. For if a man comes into your assembly with a gold ring and dressed in fine clothes, and there also comes in a poor man in dirty clothes, and you pay special attention to the one who is wearing the fine clothes, and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and you say to the poor man, “You stand over there, or sit down by my footstool,” have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil motives? Listen, my beloved brethren: did not God choose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him? But you have dishonored the poor man. Is it not the rich who oppress you and personally drag you into court? Do they not blaspheme the fair name by which you have been called? (James 2:1-7)

Shiloh church clearly showed favor to those who could afford a $500 “VIP” table to a black-tie event. This event was clearly intended for the rich to the exclusion or the poor. “VIP” and “reserve” seating aside, a $50 per person ticket cost was clearly cost prohibitive to families of limited means. Access to their pastor’s celebration was limited to the wealthy. So, too, was the advertising space made available in the commemorative program. Those who could not attend were encouraged to by an ad or greeting.

If you are unable to attend- you can show your support by buying an ad or greeting in the Commemorative 10th Anniversary Program Booklet.

At Shiloh Baptist church, it costs money to greet the pastor. The sale of ad space at a church event calls to mind the words of of the Lord Jesus as he cleansed the money changers from the temple:

Take these things away; stop making my Father’s house a place a business.

The most important person, the VIP, in the local church is the Holy Spirit. He provides gifting to each member of the body, no matter his wealth level, to serve the other members of the body. At Shiloh, the poor were despised to honor a wealthy pastor. H.B. Charles, Jr is an example of the deplorable celebrity culture that has developed in American evangelicalism. Charles teaches thousands of Christians through his lectures and publications yet his local church, which he is responsible to shepherd, would draw the strongest condemnation from the Apostle James and his brother the Lord Jesus. Why is this man touted before America’s Christian masses?

Plain and simple, he is good at making money and drawing money in that market. Charles is arguably a businessman in the family business more so than a pastor. According to his bio at Shiloh church:

At the age of eleven, H.B. began his public ministry at the Mount Sinai Missionary Baptist Church, under the watchful eyes of his father and the other pastoral leaders of the congregation...In June of 1989, the Lord called Dr. Charles, Sr. from labor to refreshment, leaving a personal and ministerial void in H.B.’s life. But the Lord used this dramatic time to further H.B.’s growth in grace and the knowledge of the Lord Jesus. And on November 5, 1990, Mount Sinai ended a year-long pastoral search by selecting H.B. to succeed his father. At the time, H.B. was a seventeen-year-old senior at Los Angeles High School.

As a 17 years of age, Charles was appointed the pastor of his father’s church. Charles became an “elder” before he graduated high school and then went to Bible college. Unfortunately, this type of nepotism is not rare in certain Christian circles, especially those who recognize “first families” and “VIPs”.

When considering the overall toxicity of celebrity preaching culture and the evangelical preaching circuit, Christians would he wise to turn their eyes to Charles’ business partners and ask themselves why they partner with such a man in “gospel” endeavors?

Pictured above are the men of “Together for the Gospel”. Among their number are Matt Chandler, Ron Burns (Thabiti Anyabwile), and Mark Dever. Christians should ask themselves if it is really “the gospel” that draws these men together.

*Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

Holy Spirit: Not Welcome Here

Holy Spirit is a powerful worship song often played on Christian radio stations and sung in Sunday Services all across America. The song was first released in 2012 by the band Jesus Culture and has since made its way westward from Redding, California, the band’s home. It’s lyrics are as follows:

There’s nothing worth more
That could ever come close
No thing can compare
You’re our living hope
Your presence, Lord
I’ve tasted and seen
Of the sweetest of loves
Where my heart becomes free
And my shame is undone
Your presence, Lord
Holy Spirit, You are welcome here
Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere
Your glory, God, is what our hearts long for
To be overcome by Your presence, Lord
Your presence, Lord
There’s nothing worth more
That could ever come close
No thing can compare
You’re our living hope
Your presence, Lord
I’ve tasted and seen
Of the sweetest of loves
Where my heart becomes free
And my shame is undone
Your presence, Lord
Holy Spirit, You are welcome here
Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere
Your glory, God, is what our hearts long for
To be overcome by Your presence, Lord
Your presence, Lord
Let us become more aware of Your presence
Let us experience the glory of Your goodness
Let us become more aware of Your presence
Let us experience the glory of Your goodness
Let us become more aware of Your presence
Let us experience the glory of Your goodness
Let us become more aware of Your presence
Let us experience the glory of Your goodness
Holy Spirit, You are welcome here
Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere
Your glory, God, is what our hearts long for
To be overcome by Your presence, Lord

If this song is being sung in your local church, you should be very alarmed.

First and foremost, it presents a heretical view of God. The singers of this song “welcome” the Holy Spirit to “fill the atmosphere” of the room. God the Holy Sprit is not some element in gaseous form who can be expected to fill the room like oxygen, nitrogen, or helium. He is not to be breathed in to an intoxicating effect. The Holy Spirit is just that, spirit. He is immaterial. He is also the sovereign God of the cosmos. He requires no invitation nor does he need to he invoked by Christians to come as every born-again believer is already endwelled by him.

Secondly, the source of this song is wicked to the core. The band Jesus Culture hails from Bethel Redding Church, a den of blasphemy and deception that is a prominent part of a greater heretical movment, the New Apostolic Reformation. At Bethel Redding, the “presence” of the the Holy Spirit is physically counterfeited in the form gold dust “glory clouds” and angel feathers from the ceiling, among other things.

Should a song which includes chants about the presence of the Holy Sprit be provided by a group of blasphemors who make a living out of faking that presence, who make a living out of decieving others? Bethel Redding and Jesus Culture use their music to whip their followers into an emotional state fit to manipulate them. They do so in the name of “Jesus” and “The Holy Spirit”. Is the worship pastor of your church doing the same when he asks you to sing this song? The Holy Spirit is God. Respect him enough not the sing this song about him. Love your brother enough to challenge him in his error when he does. Do not welcome Holy Spirit at your church.

For information on Bethel Redding see this well-researched article.

For an example of how to challenge this song at your church, see this letter I sent to my former music minister:
Gary,

I’d like to generally commend you for your Sunday morning song selection. In all the time I’ve been attending RSBC, I can only remember hearing Hillsong once and the songs you pick are almost always sound.
One glaring exception is the song “Holy Spirit”. Not only is this song theologically unsound, it comes from the minds of “Jesus Culture”, the popular band hailing from Bill Johnson’s Bethel Redding Church. I’d like to offer you the following wisdom from Pastor Gabe Hughes about singing Jesus Culture songs in Christ’s church:
“Here’s three reasons why you shouldn’t play their music in church. First, their songs offer nothing substantive. Your church will not be missing anything if you don’t play Jesus Culture songs, but you will be missing something if you do. As I’ve written about before, there’s nothing biblically solid about their music. If you think you hear doctrinally sound lyrics, that’s because the song is ambiguous enough to allow you to impose your (probably better) theology upon it. But if their teaching isn’t biblical, neither will their music be.
Second, you would inadvertently be endorsing their church. If someone found out the song you sang on Sunday came from Jesus Culture, that could open the door for that person exposing them to Bethel’s teaching and heresy. I shared an occasion of this happening in a previous article (linked above).
And third, you would be paying them for their songs. If your church is singing something other than hymns or what’s in the public domain, then you probably have a CCLI license. That means you pay royalties on the songs that you sing. If some of those songs are from Jesus Culture, you are paying them to sing their music. (By the way, these reasons also apply to why we shouldn’t sing Hillsong tunes either.)”
Even if the song were not written by some of the most dangerous people in the Christian music industry, the Holy Spirit is not some kind of tangible gas that “fills the atmosphere” nor is he someone who needs our invitation or “welcome” to a specific place, especially a church. God tabernacles with believers. We needn’t ask for his presence.
I hope Gary, that you will never perform this song in our church (or anywhere else) ever again. It is not fit for God’s people.

Best,

Seth Dunn

*Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.

Cartersville Government Considers “Entertainment District”

Just three days ago, the Daily Tribune reported on a “Fall Pub Crawl” that is being planned by the Cartersville Downtown Development Authority. I wrote about this sobering moral development, as it relates to trend of selling alcohol in Cartersville, in my last blog. Yesterday, the Tribune reported that the City Council and Alcohol Control Board are now considering creating an “Entertainment District” in the downtown area in which retail establishments could sell alcoholic beverages. This is another cause for moral concern.

In my former career as an external auditor, one of my clients was the City of Forest Park. At that time the Army operated a base, Fort Gillem, in the city. The proximity of soliders infused a demand for alcohol and women into the local economy. The economy provided it and the city taxed it. The City of Forest Park imposed an adult entertainment tax on the local strip joints. I audited that tax. I had never heard of such a thing before and can remember being taken aback that a city government would profit* off of houses of ill repute. Yet, Forest Park did so.

Now, my own city is considering an “Entertainment District”. In the case of Cartersville, the “entertainment” in question is selling alcoholic beverages in shops. As a teetotaling Baptist I don’t see how drinking beer while shopping constitutes entertainment but I digress. I’ve never been one for slippery slope arguments but surely Cartersville faces one with the proposed Entertainment District. Could adult entertainment eventually fall under the regulation of such a district? Would the City of Cartersville, which already brings in revenue through an alcohol excise tax, one day tax strippers (male or female)?

Today, the Christians of Cartersville need to take a hard look at why church attendance has been trending either downward or toward entertainment-driven venues like Crosspoint City Church. The Christians of Cartersville need to ask why their city is run by a Roman Catholic mayor while their local Masonic Cult is run by Southern Baptists. Supposedly, Cartersville is in the Bible Belt. Unfortunately, it looks like the leather is wearing thin.

*I use the term “profit” loosely here. “Sin taxes” such as this one are typically meant to offset the costs of increased police activity associated with strippers and alcohol.

**Please note that the preceding is my personal opinion. It is not necessarily the opinion of any entity by which I am employed, any church at which I am a member, any church which I attend, or the educational institution at which I am enrolled. Any copyrighted material displayed or referenced is done under the doctrine of fair use.