Wednesday, January 4, 2012

What Do George Bloomer, Bethel Family Worship Ctr. & Drug Money Have in Common?

You have heard of the expression, "the truth is stranger than fiction"? Well it cetainly is that.  In an unbelievable confession on his Rejoice In The Word program, Friday 12/30/2011, the bishop George Bloomer stated that he purchased his church with $600,000 of DRUG money that he had earned during his drug sales days.

He stated that when he was selling drugs, there were many safe houses that he would use where he would have young ladies hold his ill-begotten drug sales earnings so that when and if he got caught he wouldn't loose his money. This is common in street corner drug sales and the reason that some folk hang out at some folk houses that don't really belong there...but that's another story...In this case, Bloomer explained how he had gone to jail, gotten out, and supposedly during the process, got "saved". We don't know if this was the "use cocaine while preaching saved" or the "cocaine free" version of saved, because according to Bloomer, they are very similar to the same thing. Also according to him a person can be "anointed" in both instances simultaneously. (which is yet another story as well)

Nonetheless, Bloomer recounted that when he got out of jail, he needed some money and this particular lady was in jail and he couldn't get to his money. He said that during this time, he needed money to complete the financial arrangements for his new church and was praying to God that God would intervene and provide the necessary resources for the church. The woman got out of prison and eventually delivered the drug money back to him. He stated that he took it, approximately $600,000, and used it to secure the mortgage on his church. He went on to expound how that event was a "blessing" for both he and his ministry and the unsuspecting audience applauded.

What's Wrong With This Picture?

Even though this was met with applause, there are many things wrong with what this bishop stated. I'll outline a few of them and ask that you chime in on the issue if you'd like.

First, this was not a blessing from God. Let's get one scriptural myth out of the way right now...the wealth of the sinner being laid up for the righteous (Prov. 13:22) has nothing to do with this or what happened here. First, the context of  that scripture does not allow it and secondly, this was supposedly the bishop's "wealth". So if he's the sinner, he can't also be the righteous for who this wealth is laid up for. Allow me to challenge you on this and we'll save that for later...let's deal with the greater issues for now:

Money Laundering & Tax Evasion

Bloomer in no uncertain terms stated that this money was gained by illegal enterprise and means. He, in his


past life, sold illegal drugs. As the gain of such illegal enterprise, the money was  never taxed. Saints, I know that many of you have never committed such crimes, but you should know that even when someone goes to jail and does time for their "dirt" the money that they earned during the process is not suddenly "clean". Time served has nothing to do with the cash profits gained from a criminal enterprise. For every crime there is a such thing as restitution and illegal drug sales is certainly NOT a victimless crime. 

When I first mentioned this on Facebook, one of the impressions was that the money should be used according to when it was received and that because he had served his time (as mentioned above) he had a right to obtain the funds and do what he wanted to do with them. The problem is, as I have stated, what  Bloomer described was the perpetuation of gains from an unlawful enterprise after he was supposedly "saved". Saved or not, this is called  Money Laundering.

Yes, Money Laundering

Bethel Life Family Worship Ctr. Durhan NC.
Was This Church Paid For In Part By Drug Money?
Money is laundered when it is gained illegally and then turned into a legal instrument such as being funneled into a bank, a legal business entity, insurance policy or some other financial instrument. When "dirty money" is converted to a legal instrument and used for whatever purpose, this is called money laundering. By Bloomer's own description, going back to money that was received under a criminal enterprise and not just any criminal enterprise, but HIS former criminal enterprise, and using it for "church purposes" there appears to be a strong possibility that this was a money laundering transaction which may be subject to possible criminal prosecution. 

Money laundering is a federal offense. Here's what a web site says about this type of transaction:
"It is a federal offense to engage in money laundering, and the penalties can include a substantial prison sentence. The laws that make money laundering a criminal offense are found at Title 18, United States Code, Sections 1956 and 1957. These statutes were passed as part of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986. 
18 USC 1956 is concerned with financial transactions involving proceeds of illegal activity. It prohibits anyone from conducting or attempting to conduct a financial transaction that involves the proceeds of specified unlawful activity either: 
1- with the intent to promote the carrying on of specified unlawful activity; or
2- with intent to engage in conduct constituting avoidance of taxes (eg, violation of 26 USC 7201 or 26 USC 7206)…"
The article goes on to say this also:
"The penalty for federal money laundering can up either a fine up to $500,000, or double the amount of money that was laundered, whichever is greater. The court is also authorized to sentence the defendant to a term of 20 years in federal prison. 
During the course of a prosecution for money laundering, the court may issue an injunction to freeze the assets of the defendant. See 18 USC 1956(3). The restraining order may also appoint a receiver to disburse the funds in the account(s). 
The money laundering statute prohibits financial transactions where the source of the funds is from specified criminal activity. The term, “specified criminal activity” is broad and includes any state law crime that is a felony.See 18 USC 1956(c)(3)."
Remember, this man described going back to ill-begotten gains after serving time, receiving those funds upon which no tax has ever been paid, depositing them either in or through the church, and using the funds to benefit the church in which he was also drawing a salary...One can say, he may not have known the law, and that his "intent" wasn't to defraud. However, if you are in or around a criminal (as Bloomer claims to have been) for any length of time, you will find that they know the law very well if they know nothing else...So an argument to the contrary would be very difficult to find credible. 

What Else Did The Bishop Confess To?

Not only did the good bishop confess to money laundering and using the church as a vehicle to make ill begotten funds good, but, in the process, he also vicariously confessed to tax evasion. How? Because this money was gained  illegally and kept secret, he didn't pay taxes on any of it. What makes it even worse is that the funds were directed through the church which is a tax exempt entity. So in essence George Bloomer described to a series of potentially, serious federal crimes beginning with tax evasion.

And the CHURCH Applauded!!! Lets graduate to the spiritual issues of his confession:

This Money Was Blood Money

Drug money is blood money! Unfortunately we have become desensitized to the fact that lives are lost, families are destroyed and communities are set on edge due to the packaging and delivery of drugs to the community and home is simply not home when drugs are proliferated on the streets. For years many of our church leaders have felt that receiving funds gained by illegal enterprise is some sort of blessing. There is nothing further from the truth, especially when the blood of victims is all over it. Does anyone remember Zachery Tims? A glassine envelope in his pocket found on his DEAD body may have and in all likelihood DID contain drugs. Can anyone question what drugs has done to many individuals in our community and suggest that it is no big deal? 

Many persons ask,  "what should the church do with money contributed by a criminal?" There are many things that can be done, but let me just say what it should do and is obligated to do with funds generated by a known criminal enterprise is inform the authorities that such funds have been distributed to it. This is without question if we abide by the word that requires the church to be subject to the higher authorities.

Romans 13:1Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.

To this issue however, with all the death and destruction as a result of illegal drug sales to begin with, even if Bloomer didn't personally kill anyone, we are confident that someone was killed over or because of it, or some family was disturbed in some way shape or form because of it.  There is death in the streets and further than that, if it is drug money today, what stops it from being money from prostitution tomorrow? Should the church be a participant with pimps and drug kingpins?

Even devils Don't Want Blood Money!

Judas, whom Jesus described as a devil (Jn. 6:70), after he had betrayed Jesus, sought to give the money back to the Chief Priest and the council:

Matt. 27:3-5 ~ "3- Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, 4-Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that. 5-And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself

The council, as evil hearted as they were, would not take it because it was BLOOD MONEY. So certain leaders authorized the purchase of the field that Judas hung himself in, and the field was purchased  in Judas's own name, which was a common practice for certain purposes at that time:

Matt. 27:6-106-And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. 7-And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. 8-Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. 9-Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value; 10-And gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord appointed me.

Now as stated, these leaders were all defiled, had rejected Jesus, and conspired to have him crucified, but even they had more sense than to accept blood money in return. They did not want the use of money that had been used to destroy lives upon their heads. Yet this modern church sees and only thinks about what it calls a "blessing"!

NO WONDER THE NEW, MODERN CHURCH IS POWERLESS!...It's not about some mystical lack of effort through prayer and fasting. It is about a total disintegration of biblical moral value ethic. The modern church really doesn't look, act, feel like or have regard for anything that would make it a Christian church according to biblical standards is this is the value ethic that it espouses. Further, the modern church suffers by allowing men and women of this caliber to be honored as leaders in turn.

From a biblical value ethic, Bloomer had an obligation to make an effort to restore what he has stolen and taken by ill-gotten means from the community at large. 

Lev. 6:4 ~ "Then it shall be, because he hath sinned, and is guilty, that he shall restore that which he took violently away, or the thing which he hath deceitfully gotten, or that which was delivered him to keep, or the lost thing which he found,"

The Government Would Use It For Themselves

Some have said giving the money to the government would be like giving it to nobody at all and at least he used it for God. This is a horrible theology for starters, and is a very low view of what god needs and uses for HIS service. In addition, sentiments like this ignores the many options that were available for the use of the funds.

How Could The Funds Have Been Used?

In the realm of possibilities, Bloomer could have presented a plan to the police and civic authorities along with the money, holding authorities accountable in serving the  families in the communities where his former drug sales proliferated. In other words, in conjunction with authorities, he could have requested and brought a great deal of attention to the fact that funds previously delivered as profits from illegal drug sales, would now be used, under his direction and administration,  to minister to the needs of families and individuals devastated during his drug sales years.

Attention as a result would CERTAINLY have given the bishop enough funds for a down-payment on the church and exponentially increased the membership necessary for the task.  Can anyone argue that he and the church would not have been blessed as a result of yielding themselves to the service of the community as opposed to the service of a building and looking good in that current moment?   

The Devil Wants Worship For His Methods?

There seems to be a low perception of the blessing ability of God toward his people. maybe this is because many of these teachers have pillaged the church for so long until many people simply say, every man and woman for him/her self. The fact is that the devil is not in the business of blessing God's people, but he will do anything to get the credit and to take the glory, because that's what he wanted from the very beginning:

Matt. 4:8-11 ~8-Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; 9-And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. 10-Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. 11-Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
  
Jesus did not argue that the devil had it within his power to give him the accolades of the world. What he did do however was equate the devil's ability and desire to perform with his desire for worship. Jesus rejected what the devil had to give on the basis of the word of the Lord and specifically the command to worship no other God other than God alone.

Conclusion

Money, fame, being seen, large buildings, and the desire for relevance has allowed many of our leaders to fall into the snare of the devil, compromising in favor of associations at almost any cost and by almost any method and means. What makes it difficult to discern, is that everyone would agree that it is a good thing to desire a church or a place where the people of God can worship and fellowship. It is a good desire to want to be able to spread the gospel. However, even in that, we should ask at what cost we are willing to  pursue even things that "appear" to be a righteous causes? Will we have to compromise all the values that we hold dear to lift up values that we teach that are dear to us and according to the word of God? If so, can we adduce that what we have compromised to achieve is a blessing from the Lord?

Bishop George Bloomer is currently involved in a serious legal matter which potentially involves defrauding investors out of $300,000. Although, this is a claim that Bloomer adamantly denies, he cannot deny that he spoke the things that I have written about out of his own mouth on national television, in the presence of witnesses, and that he has also written and testified to these things personally by way of speaking engagements and in books. 

When all of this is combined and IF all of this is true, what greater testament is there that speaks directly to his character and ethical morality. A mistake? I hope so! But I'm not counting on any repentance for what he readily confesses that he has done. 

Blessed!


Special Note: {Nothing in this article is rendered as legal or tax advice on any particular situation or aspect of law. This information is rendered to examine the material facts and statements of the bishop which are on record. Further and examination of his statements are rendered to educate the public as to what they are seeing and hearing. All allegations are only that until they have been proven by proper authorities.} 

14 comments:

  1. I live in the Raleigh-Durham NC area and word is that Bishop Bloomer is actually renting the building which is or was a middle school.

    Min. Terry

    ReplyDelete
  2. Min. Terry,

    Isn't that something. So what church did he "buy" with the money? In fact it could have been for renovations. An old school would probably have to come up to code first.

    I have received some emails and some calls stating that Bloomer isn't credible either. That he is liable to say anything if it brings him attention. I don't know what to say about that but I can't put it past many of these modern styled leaders like him. Anyone who would call the pastor of any church teaching truth a "looser" because he doesn't have a "national stage" (ie: great in their own eyes) is certainly not a good example of anything that has to do with leadership.

    Thanks for that info. Maybe some one else may know for sure. They can chime in as well.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow! Using drug money to fund a church and boldly bragging about his wrong doing and gets applause???? Okay people, when the Lord saves us, He cleanses us and the fear of the Lord is in our hearts. One of the first things a true convert will do is get RID of things that are tied to the world!!!! Books, tapes, cd’s, clothes, pornography, drug paraphernalia, friends, homes, etc…

    Why??? Because there is a deep desire to please God when one’s spiritual eyes have been opened and there is a strong recognition of sin. Therefore the true convert will clean house.

    Acts 19:18-20, And many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds. 19 Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted up the value of them, and it totaled fifty thousand pieces of silver. 20 So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed. (NKJ)

    One does not take money that one made from destroying lives and start a church!!! Luke 19: 8-9, So then Zacchaeus stood up and solemnly declared to the Lord, See, Lord, the half of my goods I [now] give [by way of restoration] to the poor, and if I have cheated anyone out of anything, I [now] restore four times as much.(A 9And Jesus said to him, Today is [[b]Messianic and spiritual] salvation come to [all the members of] this household, since Zacchaeus too is a [real spiritual] son of Abraham; (Amplified)

    God doesn’t need us or our stuff, we are so confused if we think that God can’t get along without us – He chooses to use
    these “vessels of clay” to accomplish His will on this planet. May God continue to have mercy, because we need it~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Latest confession Lady D,

      On his show, Rejoice In The Word 32/2/2012, Bloomer admitted that around the same time that Zachery Tims died, he was mixing his prescription drugs which included prozac, crushing them into a cocktail that he could snort like cocaine to get high. He blamed it on his overwhelming circumstances of divorce and other personal trials and tribulations. Juanita II said when she heard about Zach dying that she called Bloomer to ask him if he was on drugs and he said no...OK, he was mixing Rx medication, snorting it like crack and claimed that he wasn't on drugs???

      Really, I'm not looking for this mess...it is in broad daylight where anyone and everyone can see it...

      Delete
  4. When one is led of the flesh, one seeks to justify what one does by fleshly means. I haven't seen a more flesh centered group of people arise than many of these folk who think they can go unnoticed.

    Like a roach when the light comes on...they's all been spotted!

    Here comes the RAID!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Well, I don't know all the facts, and it seems like they aren't all in yet anyway...??but I'm just remembering who it was that gave their opinion about Mary anointing Jesus from the alabaster jar, the extravagance which was the only fragrance of love and worship that went with Him to the cross. Now I'm wondering where she got that perfume. Judas said, "should not this have been sold and the money given to the poor?" (Our poor may have bought drugs with it.) And then Judas went out and fully complied with the religious leaders, getting money to betray Jesus. I'm thinking that the best help for drug users is a CHURCH. But who am I to judge?

    ReplyDelete
  6. @Cindy, I so agree. And why can't that scripture be used in this instance? The wealth of the sinner is laid up for the ...This was wealth that yes, he laid up, but when he came to Christ, made the decision to use it for the up-building of something for God. He could've snuck back, got the money and bought houses, vehicles, land, and jewelry for hisself, but no it wasnt used for that. j/s

    ReplyDelete
  7. Donna,

    Thanks for commenting but I think the scripture you need to support your position is:

    "The wealth gained by wicked means is laid up for thee when thou decides to do right"

    I don't know what chapter and verse that may be, but I can't find that in my reference...

    I sufficiently deal with the argument in the article and find that it is unbiblical to use blood money for his Kingdom. The bishop's actions cannot be justified.

    Sorry my sistah, but present something more sound than that IF the idea is to deliver a biblical ethic.

    thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Cindy,

    When a man presents the facts from his own mouth...they are in...folk such as this need no excuse and to make up one for them only fuels bad behavior and unethical decisions.

    Now, I've referenced the date and the time which eh said what he said. That cannot change in time.

    What we are dealing with is an issue between passive or incidental morality and actively immoral behavior.

    Here the bishop is actively engaged in immoral behavior, by first selling drugs (I doubt if he would disagree) and secondly actively moving to conceal his ill gotten gains. And three, actively covering this fact up which is a concealment from due process of law and everything. So there is all kinds of things wrong with this scenario.

    Now, that differs from passive immorality in which a person does not construct the situation. In other words, you don't know that Taco Bell is supporting gay rights etc. You work for them and receive and income, or may eat food from them, but those decisions are beyond you and you have not constructed to conceal material facts.

    We have the bishop, who the bible says should be above reproach in areas of ethical dealings, that actively constructs and affirms unethical behavior and dealings and blames all of that on God????

    That is unbelievable and there is no biblical support to establish the position of ethical morality...If so, I invite anyone to present the case.

    ReplyDelete
  9. He could've used the money for himself... instead he used it on a church. How dare him! *note the sarcasm*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or he could have simply been open and honest, taken the money to police and governmental officials and dedicated it towards a real community drug partnership outreach program that he could head and direct and not only would have blessed and strengthened the members of his church but helped countless community members with a real and tangible outreach program with hands and hearts where they are needed helping reverse something that he had personally been a part of....

      Obviously you don't seem to understand he DID use it for himself...No sarcasm intended....

      Delete
  10. My statement on these matters would be in the form of a question. "Who is the real Judge and who is He going to judge? It is a good question to keep in mind when questions and judging is going around. Here is another good one. Love covers the multitude of sin.

    ReplyDelete

Please send me an email if you try to post a comment and cannot do so. Dunamis1@netzero.com. Thanks.