What does it mean to own something? It means that the thing is yours and remains in your possession until you voluntarily give it to another, as a gift or as an exchange.
In contrast to owning something, renting is to make payment for the ability to use something.
It’s this distinction, between owning and renting, that highlights the fundamental injustice of any level of property taxation. Property taxes, regardless of how small, deny the basic God-given right man has to private property. And, yes, man has this right to property, to ownership, from the generous hand of God. In the Ten Commandments, we are forbidden from coveting another man’s house, wife, servant, ox, ass, or anything that is his. There are things in the world that God designates as “his”, not “yours” or “ours”. Your neighbor owns what he owns and we may not covet his possessions. To deny ownership of property, an idea built into the Law of God, is, therefore, to reject God’s Law, the image of God in man, and God himself. This is high rebellion, even if it is common and accepted.
But in what way does property tax deny ownership and private property? Again, to own property is to have it as mine until I voluntarily relinquish it. Renting is to pay in order to use. Now, when you buy a house or some land, you probably took a loan from the bank that, over time, you agree to pay back. So, every year, 12 times a year, you pay off your debt to the lender. The lender, though, is not the only one you pay when you buy that house. Every year, the government requires you to pay it property tax. They tell you what your house or land is worth and what you have to pay in order to “have” it. If you don’t make payment, the eventual consequence is that your house or land will be taken from you. You will no longer have the ability to use it. As you can see, by levying property tax, the government assumes a rental, not ownership, framework. It assumes to itself the position of landlord. It owns all houses and lands and you pay rent in order to use as a “landowner” or “homeowner”. You own by name and not in truth.
Not all men must own, must have. But it is not granted to the government to deny that men can own and can have. This is a usurpation of power. It is evil and no less so when voted upon, for a group cannot deny me what God has granted.
Righteous taxation is possible. Righteous property taxation is not. The righteous will expunge it from the land.