About the Author

Jay Guin grew up in northwest Alabama where he learned both the joys and tribulations of the Churches of Christ first hand. He attended David Lipscomb College (now University) in Nashville, majoring in mathematics. At Lipscomb he met, wooed, and married his wife Denise.

After college, Jay attended the University of Alabama School of Law in Tuscaloosa, where he began attending the University Church of Christ. www.universitycofc.org. He was graduated in 1975.

After clerking for a federal judge for a year, Jay returned to Tuscaloosa (and the University Church of Christ) to practice law, founding his own firm, Tanner & Guin, LLC, in 1984. www.tannerguin.com.

Jay has been very active in church, as a deacon and in leading the effort to merge his congregation with the Alberta Church of Christ, the relocation of the congregation, and two major building programs.

Jay led the congregation’s adult education program for many years and taught virtually every Sunday morning (and many Wednesday nights) for 30 years. Jay wrote The Holy Spirit and Revolutionary Grace in 1994 (still available at http://web.ovc.edu/bookstore/holysp.shtml.) They made Jay an elder in 2003.

Jay has recently spoken at the Pepperdine Lectureship, ACU Lectureship, the Harding University Lectureship, the Lipscomb lectureship (called Summer Celebration), and at ElderLink programs in Atlanta. (Outlines from these lectures are posted on this site.)

Jay and Denise have four sons, two of whom graduated from Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas. Jay’s oldest son, Chris, works in Boston, where he’s part of a church plant. Jonathan is in law school at UA. Another son, Tyler, is attending Auburn University, studying chemistry, and the youngest, Philip, is still in high school.

Nothing in this book represents the official or received position of the eldership of the University Church of Christ — Jay speaks for himself only.

Jay’s email address is jfguin(at)comcast(dot)net.

(@ and . are replaced to avoid the web bots that mine email addresses to send spam.)

All legal discussions are informational only, do not create a lawyer-client relationship, and may not be relied on. Unless expressly stated otherwise on this website, (1) nothing contained in this website was intended or written to be used, can be used by any taxpayer, or may be relied upon or used by any taxpayer for the purposes of avoiding penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended; (2) any written statement contained on this website relating to any federal tax transaction or matter may not be used by any person to support the promotion or marketing or to recommend any federal tax transaction or matter; and (3) any taxpayer should seek advice based on the taxpayer’s particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor with respect to any federal tax transaction or matter contained in this website. No one, without our express written permission, may use any part of this website in promoting, marketing or recommending an arrangement relating to any federal tax matter to one or more taxpayers.


19 Responses

  1. I was blessed to hear your presentations at ElderLink in Atlanta, GA this past Saturday. I appreciate your study, knowledge, and challenge that we truly be One in Christ. It was a refreshing experience and one I know I will appreciate more and more as time goes by. Thanks again. May our God continue to bless our work. Tell Shon hello for me.

  2. Brother, this blog may have possibly kept me from losing my faith and/or going insane! For a long time I have been very confused about so many ideas in the Bible that I’ve just wanted to give up trying to understand anything. A lot of your articles are helping me to see more clearly. Of course I’m not “taking your word” over my own study of the Bible but you are putting things in a context that makes sense. And you are not glossing over contradictions or being intellectually dishonest as sadly I have found some authors to do. I thank God that He allowed me to read this stuff at a time when my doubts and fears have been making me miserable. Praise be to Him!

  3. Melina,

    Thanks so much for your kind words. I’m delighted my writings have helped you search the scriptures.

    Please feel free to email me to ask any questions that concern you. I genuinely appreciate such questions. After all, ideas for new postings have to come from somewhere!

    Ultimately, I’m doing this for you and others like you, and it’s good to hear now and then that it’s worth the trouble.


  4. Dear Jay: I am an elder in a small congregatino in NC (thus the lack of last name), I had started to write a position paper for the other elders because although we all have an agreement on how to respond to those divorced and remarried we did not have a good grasp of why we felt we were doing the right thing.
    I am reading your essay “But If You Do Marry” and was amazed at the number of questions you raise which I also have considered. I have also read some of the essays by Cecil Hook and find that Chap 16 of his book “Free as Sons” (http://www.freedomsring.org/fas/chap16.html) gives a very good explanation of what and why Paul wrote the instructions on I Cor. 7. At least it answers in my mind what Paul may have meant in that passage. Keep up the good work.
    In Christian Love,

  5. Can you be of help with a tax question. AKCLI is is a 501c3 organizartion. We have a couple and their two children living on our orpahanage property in Zambia. They are supported through donations sent to AKCLI and then fowwarded to them in part and another part stays in the US to fund retirement, insurance, 529 fund for college, and travel back to the US every three years.

    They have lived in Zambia since Oct. 2006 and have not travelled out of Zambia since. What is the proper way to handle their taxes? They have paid no social security and no state taxes. They have no residence in the US. As a friend, I have pwoer of attorney for them. The organization has no employees, all is done by volunteers. Can you give us, me, direction on the tax issue.

    Thank You

    Ken Mueller

  6. Jay, I’m studying to be a deacon in the Episcopal Church. One of my assignments is gathering information about baptism. I’ve checked quite a few websites. Your information is one of the best. Thank you. It was really helpful. God’s peace be with you.


  7. Thanks, Willetta.

    On this site, you should be looking at the Amazing Grace series (link on the left) or the Born of Water book found under Books by Jay Guin (link on the left).

    Some of my favorite books on the subject are — Baptism in the NT, by GR Beasley-Murray, and Down to the River to Pray, by John Mark Hicks and Greg Taylor.

    May God bless your studies.

  8. InvitationToVisit:

    Jesus and Paul on divorce rights under the New Covenant.


    Resource Link For Thinking Christians

  9. I have added you to my links at http://gracedigest.com

    Merry Christmas,
    Royce Ogle

  10. Jay ,
    Just found your blog. I still have great memories of our few years at University. May God continue to bless your life…Ray Bean

  11. Ray,

    I’m thrilled to hear from you. I hope your ministry continues to do well.

  12. Jay,

    Just found your website and have been reading your opinions with interest. I believe that anything that makes me think makes me stronger. Anything that makes me consider or study an opinion I may not agree with broadens my base, again, making me stronger.

    So far, from your writings, I’m doing a lot of thinking and considering and feel I’m definitely expanding my base knowledge and growing. It’s one thing to read knee jerk opinions and another to read well considered thoughtful ideas. Keep it up.

    Pat Patterson

  13. I get emails —

    Dear Brother Guin:

    You cannot imagine how much I have relied upon you for the past couple years. I have read all of your articles on-line and have read the writings from several of your links. Leroy Garrett has been a favorite of mine for several years.

    I have reprinted your articles and blogs in our paper bulletins. Your writings fit well as lesson plans in the “curriculum” I’m using to give our group a sense of belonging, purpose and set of beliefs.

    Our people are battle scarred and have been forbidden for years from questioning the “authorization/we’re the only ones going to heaven” people who maintained leadership roles by intimidating and bullying.

    The congregation has gone through three splits in a 15 year period and two of those splits were in the past three years.

    Some wanted to “compromise” by not allowing a discussion of the very factors leading to the repetitive splits we were having. This compromise was leaving people at the margins of our church. The problem has been that members have held varying degrees of legalism.

    The long-time preacher retired last spring and moved on. I’m now doing most of the preaching and teaching in the congregation (until we can afford to hire what one member calls “a real preacher”).

    We are redefining who we are and oneinjesus.info is playing a big part in this. We are the only progressive leaning Church of Christ in the area. There is a need for a congregation like us in the area. We were down to 25 members last spring. Lately though, we have been running 40 to 50 on occasion. We’ve had some additions. We are people who believe the old restoration era maxim : “…in essentials unity; in opinions liberty; in all things love.”

    Thank you, Brother Guin. I may not know you, but I depend on you.

    [Edited for anonymity]

  14. hi jay,
    i am a new subscriber to your site and am really enjoying the articles and comments. i am also a 59 year old disfellowshipped member of the coc. i have spent most of my life in confusion concerning baptism, instrumental music, etc. in fact, i can ably debate almost any side of any issue but have yet to find my moorings on any of them. i would be interested in reading any info concerning events following Christs 2nd coming and the new heavens and new earth. also, whether we rmain in a state of”sleep” until HIs coming if we die prior to this event.
    yours truly,
    sid carter

  15. I am a member of Highland Church of Christ which is in Abilene, Texas. I saw by your blog that you have participated in Lecureships at ACU.

    We are not supported by Highland but they have been handling our funds and providing tax receipts for our supporters. We are missionaries in Bosnia & Herzegovina for 11+ years. As happens personel changes and many in the church are new since we came to BiH. We recently met with the mission committee and found that only one member of the committe was on it when we started in BiH.

    When we started in missions our CPA was Brother McCurdy and he had been CPA as a ministry to many coc missionaries. He set up a working fund for us of $20000 dollars and we have never reported this as income. We have never reached the level of the working fund. We receive our main personal income from Social Security because I am at retirement age.

    The amount handled for us by Highland went from them into a separate fund, all of which was used as working funds. Our actual expenses are greater than the amount of the fund and we make up any deficit from personal income.

    Highland are very supportive of us but they are now fearful of violating some IRS regulations and they are wanting a written agreement. They have suggested a number of alternatives including calling us employees, having us form a 501c3 corporation, filing a 1099, etc. They also want detailed reports of the way in which we spend the ministry funds.

    Before now they have not exercised any control over us. They are supportive as I said but they want to do what is right and we do too.

    When we filed tax returns Brother McCurdy filed them in accordance with his advise on how to report the working funds. They were not reported as income. He has been retired for several years and our total income is far below the minimum and we no longer file returns.

    I have a couple of questions. One- what receipts should we keep on file for money spent on ministry expenses?

    I have not read your 12 page memo on missionary reporting so I may have other questions.

    I too am an attorney and did in fact do a good deal of tax law but I am anything but current today.

    My second question is this – Several members of coc are in or considering law as a profession. How do you advise such persons?

    I have recently had a revelation that our Christian lawyers are put in a vise when forced to provide adequate defense for an obviously guilty party. I did not do criminal defense work but I did represent clients whose ethics I found wanting.

    I realized as I thought about this that the legal system as it is laid out did not provide us with any advise or options how to represent a guilty party other than to provide a vigorous defense;
    There are times when an honorable coming forth with the truth would be a breath of fresh air. I know that mediation and arbitration is gaining populatity. I also know that CLS has long advocated Christian Mediation or Arbitration as a biblical alternative.

  16. Sid,

    I’m glad to have you as a reader.

    You might take a look at the Surprised by Hope series. http://oneinjesus.info/index-under-construction/eschatology/surprised-by-hope/

    Also regarding where the dead are before the Judgment, see

    Where Are the Dead? Part 1

    Where Are the Dead? Part 2

    Where Are the Dead? Part 3

  17. Max,

    Regarding a missionary’s (or preacher’s) work fund, it’s 1099 or W-2 income unless the sponsoring church has an “accountable” plan. The missionary or preacher can deduct what he actually spends in the performance of his duties, in general, but for an employee (rather than an independent contractor) the deductions are itemized deductions subject to a number of limitations. It’s much better to have an accountable plan.

    A plan is “accountable” if payment is only made based on receipts or similar proof that the money is being spent as a legitimate expense of mission or ministry work.

    The rules for an accountable plan are at http://www.irs.gov/govt/fslg/article/0,,id=164471,00.html And http://www.irs.gov/publications/p463/ch06.html#en_US_publink100034114 And http://www.irs.gov/publications/p463/ch05.html

    As a rule, you have to have receipts and you have to demonstrate the business purpose of the expense.

    One way of looking at it is that you have to include the money in income unless you demonstrate either to the IRS or your sponsor that the money was properly spent on a deductible expense. But if you have unlimited control of the funds, it’s income subject to whatever deductions you can prove.

    IRS Publication 463 is a pretty good source for the rules.

  18. Good article on patternism.

    My critique of the Josh 22:28 “behold the pattern” example is that the question of whether the pattern (replica) of the altar was good or evil depended entirely upon what the Transjordan tribes intended in creating it.

    The same is true of any pattern today.



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