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ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 01:41 PM
Greetings,

1 Pet 5:1-4 says, "The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away."

"Filthy lucre" means, "greedy gain" (Strong's G146, G147). With such an exhortation, is it right to "sell" ministry gifts, teachings, resources, etc? I understand that ministers need money to live, but is it wrong to make others pay for what they receive? Is it wrong to live lavishly off the body of Christ? One famous minister was recently caught spending $26,000 on one night's hotel stay! Where is the balance?



It's interesting to note the Scriptural examples regarding lucre:

1 Kgs 3:5 - Solomon prized wisdom above filthy lucre.
Heb 11:24-26 - Moses refused luxury, choosing rather to suffer affliction... He had respect for eternal riches.
Phil 2:19-22 - Timothy sought not his own.
2 Kgs 5 - Elisha refused payment for his ministry to Naaman.
Dan 5:1-17 - Daniel refused the kings gifts for his interpretation of the writing on the wall.
1 Sam 12:1-4 - Samuel said, "whose ox have I taken? ... whom have I defrauded?"
2 Cor 11:7-9 - Paul kept himself from being "burdensome".
Phil 4:15-19 - Paul didn't desire a gift. He accepted their giving because he knew it would return a blessing upon their own heads.
1 Cor 10:33 - "...not seeking mine own profit..."
2 Cor 7:1-3 - Paul said, "...we have defrauded no man."
1 Cor 9:11-18 -"If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things? If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power..."
2 Cor 12:14-19 - "...I (Paul) will not be burdensome... I seek not yours, but you... did I make a gain of you? ... Did Titus make a gain of you?"

What do you think?

Z.

RabbiKnife
Oct 22nd 2009, 01:49 PM
Asking someone to cover the cost of producing and sending a tape, CD, DVD, book, etc...I don't really have a problem with that, although I don't think I could find it within me to make such a requirement.


Selling tickets to come hear someone preach? Never on God's green earth.

Ministry "gifts?" (Prayer clothes, annointing oil, statuettes, etc???) Just fleecing the sheep.

I choose to use my money otherwise. I'll let God deal with the reward/lack of reward issue ...

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:16 PM
Paul stated in 1 Cor. that he had a right to their material wealth because he had shared his spiritual wealth with them. He didn't take it, but he had a right to it.

Some of Paul's spiritual children were so appreciative of what he had taught them that if they had been able, they would have plucked out their very eyes and gave them to him. That's gratitude.

Nothing wrong with Abraham being rich, Solomon, David or Job or Barnabas or many other ministers of the gospel. But there is something wrong with greed.

One of my favorite stories is one you mentioned above about Elisha refusing payment. When his servant took the payment, the leprosy of Namaan fell on him and his household. God's grace is not for sell. We do not sell the grace of God lest we too become leprous! However, that doesn't mean that the children of God are not to bless the ministers of grace as God leads. There's a difference in giving because one experienced a singular miracle and giving to support a family, mission, man of God, etc.

And as RK said above... it does cost to produce books, tapes, etc. I prefer that they be given away but I'll buy them up right and left. If I had enough money, I would see to it that some messages could be had for free. Anyway, the main point is that filthy lucre is sin. Greed is sin. The love of money is sin. Having money is not sin.

RabbiKnife
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:18 PM
Nothing wrong with wealth.

Something wrong with selling the gospel.

Firefighter
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:29 PM
I took ZERO money from my church and only put money into it. I have never asked for a dime anywhere I have ever preached. My sermons and study materials are now and always have been free.

I have no problem with paid pastors... they certainly earn it. Anything beyond making a good, reasonable and honest living (roughly equal to the median salary of your church) is just too much to take from the church in my book.

How can anybody sleep in a $26,000 dollar a night hotel when I am positive there are hungry children with in a mile or two of that hotel is beyond me.

I wonder how many preachers, pastors and evangelists would quit tomorrow if the pay stopped...:hmm:




It is amazing how something written thousands of years ago could be so scarily accurate today...

Ezekiel 34:2-6 Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks? Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock. The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them. And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they became meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered. My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every high hill: yea, my flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:33 PM
Paul stated in 1 Cor. that he had a right to their material wealth because he had shared his spiritual wealth with them. He didn't take it, but he had a right to it.

Some of Paul's spiritual children were so appreciative of what he had taught them that if they had been able, they would have plucked out their very eyes and gave them to him. That's gratitude.

Nothing wrong with Abraham being rich, Solomon, David or Job or Barnabas or many other ministers of the gospel. But there is something wrong with greed.

One of my favorite stories is one you mentioned above about Elisha refusing payment. When his servant took the payment, the leprosy of Namaan fell on him and his household. God's grace is not for sell. We do not sell the grace of God lest we too become leprous! However, that doesn't mean that the children of God are not to bless the ministers of grace as God leads. There's a difference in giving because one experienced a singular miracle and giving to support a family, mission, man of God, etc.

And as RK said above... it does cost to produce books, tapes, etc. I prefer that they be given away but I'll buy them up right and left. If I had enough money, I would see to it that some messages could be had for free. Anyway, the main point is that filthy lucre is sin. Greed is sin. The love of money is sin. Having money is not sin.

Yes, to possess money isn't sin... but to love money is sin. I have heard of preachers who will not come to a church unless they can be guaranteed a $10k offering (what they call an "honorarium").

Do you know of any place in Scriture where men of God accepted payment for their services? Sure, they had a right to it, but did they ever accept it? Of course, the Levitical priesthood lived off the people... any others?

Z.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:35 PM
Ezekiel 34:2-6 Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks? Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed: but ye feed not the flock. The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them. And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they became meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered. My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every high hill: yea, my flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them.

Scary is right!

Z.

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:38 PM
Yes, to possess money isn't sin... but to love money is sin. I have heard of preachers who will not come to a church unless they can be guaranteed a $10k offering (what they call an "honorarium").

Do you know of any place in Scriture where men of God accepted payment for their services? Sure, they had a right to it, but did they ever accept it? Of course, the Levitical priesthood lived off the people... any others?

Z.

Paul accepted it and instructed the church to take up an offering on the first day of the week so that when he arrived, it wouldn't be a big burden. But there were other places where he wouldn't take it and he made tents.

1 Cor 16:2
2 On the first day of every week each one of you is to put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come.
NASU

He wanted them to take up a little each week so that they wouldn't be burdened by him all at once.

But this showed growth in Corinth. Because previously he would not take anything from them in order not to hinder his message.

1 Cor 9:11-14
11 If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? 12 If others share the right over you, do we not more? Nevertheless, we did not use this right, but we endure all things so that we will cause no hindrance to the gospel of Christ. 13 Do you not know that those who perform sacred services eat the food of the temple, and those who attend regularly to the altar have their share from the altar? 14 So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.
NASU

It is God's direction that those who proclaim the gospel get their living from the gospel. But we see above too that Paul did not exercise that right with this immature group at first. But in a later chapter, he instructed them to take up a little each week so it wouldn't have to be done when he arrived.

There were also other churches that Paul preached in that gave him money so he could live and preach there and in other places. He also made tents.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:40 PM
How can anybody sleep in a $26,000 dollar a night hotel when I am positive there are hungry children with in a mile or two of that hotel is beyond me.


I have struggled with the fact that there are so many starving innocent children in the world. I've wondered why God would answer some prayers to give us raises in our salaries, yet seemingly ignore other's pleadings for a consistent meal! It breaks my heart. I wonder if the apparent abuse of God's money has anything to do with this? The money is meant to flow through us, but instead it often stops with us. Is the fact that so many people lack everyday needs a direct result of the sinful luxuries of rich men? Even rich ministers?

Z.

Vhayes
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:46 PM
There is something seriously wrong when a "man of the gospel" will use scare tactics to gain money - as in your family, your children will be cursed if you don't contribute to my ministry. Or sending an elderly woman a letter telling her the ministry would have to quit praying for her unless she gave a specific sum (not insignificant) to them by such and such a date.

It is nothing short of strong arm tactics, extortion pure and simple. If someone named Luigi or Homeslice did it, he'd be in jail for racketeering but if his name is Benny or Oral, then we defend them. Sheesh.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:46 PM
Paul accepted it and instructed the church to take up an offering on the first day of the week so that when he arrived, it wouldn't be a big burden. But there were other places where he wouldn't take it and he made tents.

1 Cor 16:2
2 On the first day of every week each one of you is to put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come.
NASU

He wanted them to take up a little each week so that they wouldn't be burdened by him all at once.

But this showed growth in Corinth. Because previously he would not take anything from them in order not to hinder his message.

1 Cor 9:11-14
11 If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? 12 If others share the right over you, do we not more? Nevertheless, we did not use this right, but we endure all things so that we will cause no hindrance to the gospel of Christ. 13 Do you not know that those who perform sacred services eat the food of the temple, and those who attend regularly to the altar have their share from the altar? 14 So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.
NASU

It is God's direction that those who proclaim the gospel get their living from the gospel. But we see above too that Paul did not exercise that right with this immature group at first. But in a later chapter, he instructed them to take up a little each week so it wouldn't have to be done when he arrived.

There were also other churches that Paul preached in that gave him money so he could live and preach there and in other places. He also made tents.

Yes, thanks.

The very fact that he made tents (i.e. he had a job to compensate his lack) tells us that he was not living luxuriously. Not that there's anything wrong with that, unless it comes from robbing God's people, and storing up for yourself greedily. Rather, he said the fathers ought to lay up for their children (2 Cor 12:14)! :o What a dramatic difference!

Z.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:48 PM
There is something seriously wrong when a "man of the gospel" will use scare tactics to gain money - as in your family, your children will be cursed if you don't contribute to my ministry. Or sending an elderly woman a letter telling her the ministry would have to quit praying for her unless she gave a specific sum (not insignificant) to them by such and such a date.

It is nothing short of strong arm tactics, extortion pure and simple. If someone named Luigi or Homeslice did it, he'd be in jail for racketeering but if his name is Benny or Oral, then we defend them. Sheesh.

Yes, it seems that the "sowing and reaping" principle has been greatly abused. Sad really.

Z.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:50 PM
I have struggled with the fact that there are so many starving innocent children in the world. I've wondered why God would answer some prayers to give us raises in our salaries, yet seemingly ignore other's pleadings for a consistent meal! It breaks my heart. I wonder if the apparent abuse of God's money has anything to do with this? The money is meant to flow through us, but instead it often stops with us. Is the fact that so many people lack everyday needs a direct result of the sinful luxuries of rich men? Even rich ministers?

Z.

Yet, at the same time, Jesus said, "For ye have the poor always with you..." (Matt 26:11) :hmm:

Z.

Firefighter
Oct 22nd 2009, 02:52 PM
A very wise man once showed me that there is NOTHING wrong with enjoying God's blessings in my life, even when I knew people in my church were hungry. That is a lesson that has stuck, however, I do think outlandish spending is not "OK".

Kenneth Copeland getting a personal gift of $2M for his ministry's fortieth anniversary and Joyce Meyers spending $30,000 on a conference table and $23,000 marble topped toilet is just plain ridiculous.:B

RabbiKnife
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:04 PM
Last week while channel surfing, I heard "Dr." Mike Murdock telling folks that the way to break the "demon of credit card debt" was to "sow a $1000 gift to his ministry and put it on the credit card as a seed of faith."

I thought I would lose it.

"Here, the way to get rid of that demon of lust is to sleep with my ho'. That'll be $1000, please."

May God stop having mercy and start a little house cleaning.

:B:B:B:B:B

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:08 PM
Yes, thanks.

The very fact that he made tents (i.e. he had a job to compensate his lack) tells us that he was not living luxuriously. Not that there's anything wrong with that, unless it comes from robbing God's people, and storing up for yourself greedily. Rather, he said the fathers ought to lay up for their children (2 Cor 12:14)! :o What a dramatic difference!

Z.

It tells us he wasn't living in luxury at that time. He said in another passage that he had learned to be rich and to be poor. And you are correct, he did say the parents were for the children! However, he wasn't speaking of preachers giving financially to the church.

Greed is always wrong whether it exist in a preacher, a laymen, a poor man or a rich man. It's just that sin bothers us more in a preacher or a hireling more than it does in other people. I suppose why not? Because teachers/preachers are held to a higher standard.

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:12 PM
A very wise man once showed me that there is NOTHING wrong with enjoying God's blessings in my life, even when I knew people in my church were hungry.

Paul told Timothy that the rich that God gave them things to enjoy but within that, they were to remember the poor.

1 Tim 6:17-19

17 Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy. 18 Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, 19 storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.
NASU

There's nothing wrong with enjoying money that God gives someone. There is something wrong if someone is not willing to share that blessing with others!

RabbiKnife
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:13 PM
It tells us he wasn't living in luxury at that time. He said in another passage that he had learned to be rich and to be poor. And you are correct, he did say the parents were for the children! However, he wasn't speaking of preachers giving financially to the church.

Greed is always wrong whether it exist in a preacher, a laymen, a poor man or a rich man. It's just that sin bothers us more in a preacher or a hireling more than it does in other people. I suppose why not? Because teachers/preachers are held to a higher standard.

I doesn't bother me more. Greed is wrong in any forum.

theBelovedDisciple
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:19 PM
Greetings,

1 Pet 5:1-4 says, "The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away."

"Filthy lucre" means, "greedy gain" (Strong's G146, G147). With such an exhortation, is it right to "sell" ministry gifts, teachings, resources, etc? I understand that ministers need money to live, but is it wrong to make others pay for what they receive? Is it wrong to live lavishly off the body of Christ? One famous minister was recently caught spending $26,000 on one night's hotel stay! Where is the balance?






It's interesting to note the Scriptural examples regarding lucre:

1 Kgs 3:5 - Solomon prized wisdom above filthy lucre.
Heb 11:24-26 - Moses refused luxury, choosing rather to suffer affliction... He had respect for eternal riches.
Phil 2:19-22 - Timothy sought not his own.
2 Kgs 5 - Elisha refused payment for his ministry to Naaman.
Dan 5:1-17 - Daniel refused the kings gifts for his interpretation of the writing on the wall.
1 Sam 12:1-4 - Samuel said, "whose ox have I taken? ... whom have I defrauded?"
2 Cor 11:7-9 - Paul kept himself from being "burdensome".
Phil 4:15-19 - Paul didn't desire a gift. He accepted their giving because he knew it would return a blessing upon their own heads.
1 Cor 10:33 - "...not seeking mine own profit..."
2 Cor 7:1-3 - Paul said, "...we have defrauded no man."
1 Cor 9:11-18 -"If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things? If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power..."
2 Cor 12:14-19 - "...I (Paul) will not be burdensome... I seek not yours, but you... did I make a gain of you? ... Did Titus make a gain of you?"
What do you think?

Z.


Very, very evident today on TV religious programming... One can see the greed and corruption of the Word.. they 'sell' the Word.. and its masked as the 'wisdom' of God... Peter also tells of these types as those who with 'feigned words make merchandise of you'... thru covetousness and all greedy practices.. Sometimes it makes me so angry at what goes on .. and I ask HIm why He lets this stuff go on.. its prophesied of in the Bible as characteristic of the Last Days... and then I understand why it is happening... their folly shall be made manifest at some time in the future.

Paul said we are not as many , which 'corrupt' the Word of God...

that word corrupt means to peddle... merchandise as a retailer would... for greedy gain.. they are 'hucksters'....

Notice Peter said.. those who are led of the Spirit.. to not be lord's over God's Heritage... but teach and preach out of a ready mind.. be willing to do it as the Spirit leads you.. this leading not based on $$$$ filthy lucre or gain.. but being led of the Spirit.. using your spiritual Gifts as the Spirit Leads...

God will take care of you.. no matter what the situation.. He will open doors for you...and make a way for you... no matter what the situation..for the Word tells us He goes before you.. and He is your Rearward... He will provide you all the means you need.. He Owns the gold and the cattle upon a thousand hills... they are His.. and He can place that in your lap.. according to His Will... for your life...

Paul told Timothy... to...

Preach the Word.. be ready in season and out of season.. being Led of the Spirit... the wealth and materials you attain...according to His Will..are really and Truly a Gift from Him... for it all flows thru that Bloody Tree and what Jesus Did there for you.. and those led of the Spirit will understand those 'things that are freely given to them'.....

these flowing thru the Person who hung on that blood stained Tree... and

not according to some formula formulated by 'earthly widsom' which is carnal and devilish.. putting God in a box and teaching and fleecing the masses on how to get 'rich' in the Name of the Lord...

How sad it is for those who follow these pernicious teachers.. May their eyes and hearts be opened to the Truth...

Great Post ZAB.. I appreciate your posts and May God Bless you!

Firefighter
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:33 PM
There's nothing wrong with enjoying money that God gives someone. There is something wrong if someone is not willing to share that blessing with others!

Yeah... my problem was I was totally denying my blessings.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:34 PM
Very, very evident today on TV religious programming... One can see the greed and corruption of the Word.. they 'sell' the Word.. and its masked as the 'wisdom' of God... Peter also tells of these types as those who with 'feigned words make merchandise of you'... thru covetousness and all greedy practices.. Sometimes it makes me so angry at what goes on .. and I ask HIm why He lets this stuff go on.. its prophesied of in the Bible as characteristic of the Last Days... and then I understand why it is happening... their folly shall be made manifest at some time in the future.

Paul said we are not as many , which 'corrupt' the Word of God...

that word corrupt means to peddle... merchandise as a retailer would... for greedy gain.. they are 'hucksters'....

Notice Peter said.. those who are led of the Spirit.. to not be lord's over God's Heritage... but teach and preach out of a ready mind.. be willing to do it as the Spirit leads you.. this leading not based on $$$$ filthy lucre or gain.. but being led of the Spirit.. using your spiritual Gifts as the Spirit Leads...

God will take care of you.. no matter what the situation.. He will open doors for you...and make a way for you... no matter what the situation..for the Word tells us He goes before you.. and He is your Rearward... He will provide you all the means you need.. He Owns the gold and the cattle upon a thousand hills... they are His.. and He can place that in your lap.. according to His Will... for your life...

Paul told Timothy... to...

Preach the Word.. be ready in season and out of season.. being Led of the Spirit... the wealth and materials you attain...according to His Will..are really and Truly a Gift from Him... for it all flows thru that Bloody Tree and what Jesus Did there for you.. and those led of the Spirit will understand those 'things that are freely given to them'.....

these flowing thru the Person who hung on that blood stained Tree... and

not according to some formula formulated by 'earthly widsom' which is carnal and devilish.. putting God in a box and teaching and fleecing the masses on how to get 'rich' in the Name of the Lord...

How sad it is for those who follow these pernicious teachers.. May their eyes and hearts be opened to the Truth...

Great Post ZAB.. I appreciate your posts and May God Bless you!

Well said, thank you.

Z.

Vhayes
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:35 PM
Last week while channel surfing, I heard "Dr." Mike Murdock telling folks that the way to break the "demon of credit card debt" was to "sow a $1000 gift to his ministry and put it on the credit card as a seed of faith."

I thought I would lose it.

"Here, the way to get rid of that demon of lust is to sleep with my ho'. That'll be $1000, please."

May God stop having mercy and start a little house cleaning.

:B:B:B:B:B
someday, and I pray it is soon, we will see one of the "famous ones" up there on the stage and we will get a little reenactment of Acts 19:15

And the evil spirit answered and said to them, "I recognize Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you?"

theBelovedDisciple
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:36 PM
Last week while channel surfing, I heard "Dr." Mike Murdock telling folks that the way to break the "demon of credit card debt" was to "sow a $1000 gift to his ministry and put it on the credit card as a seed of faith."

I thought I would lose it.

"Here, the way to get rid of that demon of lust is to sleep with my ho'. That'll be $1000, please."

May God stop having mercy and start a little house cleaning.

:B:B:B:B:B




lol... I just chuckle at that.. as I watch that same thing.. but on a serious note....

yes that is very sad.. and very diabolical..... unfortunately people 'fall' for these pernicious teachings...


this should be a sharp reminder of the times we live in... this kind of stuff..


Jesus said the 'seed' was the Word of God...

and the 'sower' goes forth sowing the Word of God..

not $$$$$$$$.... for filthy lucre or gain.. in the Name of the Lord...

tragic .. very tragic..

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:40 PM
Yeah... my problem was I was totally denying my blessings.

The Bible says that leaders are to be "ensamples" unto the flock (1 Pet 5:3). This doesn't men we give everything away, rather, we show them the RIGHT way to do things. There is a RIGHT WAY to be blessed, as you said UM. There is also a WRONG WAY. The right way is:
3 Jn 2 "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth."
The wrong way is for filthy lucre's sake.

Z.

ZAB
Oct 22nd 2009, 03:42 PM
There's nothing wrong with enjoying money that God gives someone. There is something wrong if someone is not willing to share that blessing with others!

Amen... Phil 2:4-5 "Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus..."

Z.

Partaker of Christ
Oct 22nd 2009, 09:01 PM
Asking someone to cover the cost of producing and sending a tape, CD, DVD, book, etc...I don't really have a problem with that, although I don't think I could find it within me to make such a requirement.


Selling tickets to come hear someone preach? Never on God's green earth.

Ministry "gifts?" (Prayer clothes, annointing oil, statuettes, etc???) Just fleecing the sheep.

I choose to use my money otherwise. I'll let God deal with the reward/lack of reward issue ...

Yes there are costs, but (in many cases) are these costs necessary today, when we have the internet?

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 09:06 PM
Yes there are costs, but (in many cases) are these costs necessary today, when we have the internet?

There's still 1 to 2 generations that rarely use the internet and they make up a big portion of church goers. Till they are gone, the traditional cost will remain. There's still a big demand for tapes, CD's, etc. I prefer to download mine in mp3, but many in the Christian world isn't there yet. I still personally know churches that make tapes.

Partaker of Christ
Oct 22nd 2009, 09:13 PM
There's still 1 to 2 generations that rarely use the internet and they make up a big portion of church goers. Till they are gone, the traditional cost will remain. There's still a big demand for tapes, CD's, etc. I prefer to download mine in mp3, but many in the Christian world isn't there yet. I still personally know churches that make tapes.

I don't disagree, but is it available for free download, for those who do have internet?

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 09:24 PM
I don't disagree, but is it available for free download, for those who do have internet?

No. The church is small and doesn't have the money to buy the equipment to do that kind of thing nor the technical know how.

That would require them to have a web page, additinoal sound equipment, convert it to MP3, etc.

I am unaware of any church that won't give a CD or tape away to those who ask. Most ask for about $2 to cover some of the cost of production but will gladly give you one for free if asked.

Partaker of Christ
Oct 22nd 2009, 09:34 PM
No. The church is small and doesn't have the money to buy the equipment to do that kind of thing nor the technical know how.

That would require them to have a web page, additinoal sound equipment, convert it to MP3, etc.

I am unaware of any church that won't give a CD or tape away to those who ask. Most ask for about $2 to cover some of the cost of production but will gladly give you one for free if asked.

Well, you talk of some small chuches, and I again agree, but what of the big churches, and what of those who already have the web sites, and the technical know how and equipment?

Brother Mark
Oct 22nd 2009, 09:38 PM
Well, you talk of some small chuches, and I again agree, but what of the big churches, and what of those who already have the web sites, and the technical know how and equipment?

Most of them I think put the sermons online for giveaway. Perhaps not all, but many do. And they still sell the CD's tapes, etc. for $2. I am grateful for that because so many people wouldn't be able to get the MP3. And most will still donate the tape or CD if one but asks.

webhead
Oct 23rd 2009, 02:44 AM
I have struggled with the fact that there are so many starving innocent children in the world. I've wondered why God would answer some prayers to give us raises in our salaries, yet seemingly ignore other's pleadings for a consistent meal! It breaks my heart. I wonder if the apparent abuse of God's money has anything to do with this? The money is meant to flow through us, but instead it often stops with us. Is the fact that so many people lack everyday needs a direct result of the sinful luxuries of rich men? Even rich ministers?

Z.

Wicked leaders lead to impoverished nations.

It's not God, it's mankind that impoverishes mankind.

Desperaux
Oct 23rd 2009, 03:25 AM
Wicked leaders lead to impoverished nations.

It's not God, it's mankind that impoverishes mankind.

You got that right. ;) I am thinking right now of my friends from our church who are in Capetown, South Africa right now ministering to the impoverished who were removed from their homes due to apartheid. Their very real problems apart from poverty are gangs, alcoholism, drug abuse and crime.

Vhayes
Oct 23rd 2009, 03:29 AM
Wicked leaders lead to impoverished nations.

It's not God, it's mankind that impoverishes mankind.
Had men followed the command to care for widows and orphans, to take care of the lame and the infirm, there would be no need for a welfare state. When we hand over the duty of caring for others to the state, we have no one to blame but ourselves when things get out of hand.

Do you want to really see Hope and Change? reach out to one person in need. Just one. If all Christians did that, amazing things would happen.
V

ThyWordIsTruth
Oct 23rd 2009, 06:23 AM
Greetings,

1 Pet 5:1-4 says, "The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away."

"Filthy lucre" means, "greedy gain" (Strong's G146, G147). With such an exhortation, is it right to "sell" ministry gifts, teachings, resources, etc? I understand that ministers need money to live, but is it wrong to make others pay for what they receive? Is it wrong to live lavishly off the body of Christ? One famous minister was recently caught spending $26,000 on one night's hotel stay! Where is the balance?



It's interesting to note the Scriptural examples regarding lucre:

1 Kgs 3:5 - Solomon prized wisdom above filthy lucre.
Heb 11:24-26 - Moses refused luxury, choosing rather to suffer affliction... He had respect for eternal riches.
Phil 2:19-22 - Timothy sought not his own.
2 Kgs 5 - Elisha refused payment for his ministry to Naaman.
Dan 5:1-17 - Daniel refused the kings gifts for his interpretation of the writing on the wall.
1 Sam 12:1-4 - Samuel said, "whose ox have I taken? ... whom have I defrauded?"
2 Cor 11:7-9 - Paul kept himself from being "burdensome".
Phil 4:15-19 - Paul didn't desire a gift. He accepted their giving because he knew it would return a blessing upon their own heads.
1 Cor 10:33 - "...not seeking mine own profit..."
2 Cor 7:1-3 - Paul said, "...we have defrauded no man."
1 Cor 9:11-18 -"If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things? If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power..."
2 Cor 12:14-19 - "...I (Paul) will not be burdensome... I seek not yours, but you... did I make a gain of you? ... Did Titus make a gain of you?"

What do you think?

Z.

I agree with you Zab. Jesus said "Freely you have recieved, freely give."

We're given gifts for the edification of the entire body of Christ. I understand if people sell stuff at a nominal cost to cover production costs and also if you need it to make a living, because he who preaches the Gospel lives by the Gospel.

However it is clear to see where one goes overboard with this, charging royalties for songs etc. when the church is already overloaded with money.

John Wesley could've died a humoungously wealthy man, he printed tons of hymn books and sold them among other things, yet he died with only 6 pounds on him, his old Geneva preaching gown and some silver cutlery which someone gave him as a gift. He willed his last pounds to the 6 coffin bearers, one to each, and died a pauper, but no doubt enormously wealthy in heaven for eternity.

John Piper gives out his books and stuff for free, if you download it from his site. And if you're poor but need his resources, you pay what you can afford. I think that is a shining light. There are people in third world countries who could extend God's kingdom more effectively with resources like that.

Some people sell books to cover the costs of running other free ministries, so sometimes it isn't very clear. However, spending $26,000 on one night's hotel stay is crazy. Some of the people who contributed to that probably live on less than a tenth of that a month.

ThyWordIsTruth
Oct 23rd 2009, 06:30 AM
Paul accepted it and instructed the church to take up an offering on the first day of the week so that when he arrived, it wouldn't be a big burden. But there were other places where he wouldn't take it and he made tents.

1 Cor 16:2
2 On the first day of every week each one of you is to put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come.
NASU

He wanted them to take up a little each week so that they wouldn't be burdened by him all at once.

But this showed growth in Corinth. Because previously he would not take anything from them in order not to hinder his message.

It is God's direction that those who proclaim the gospel get their living from the gospel. But we see above too that Paul did not exercise that right with this immature group at first. But in a later chapter, he instructed them to take up a little each week so it wouldn't have to be done when he arrived.

There were also other churches that Paul preached in that gave him money so he could live and preach there and in other places. He also made tents.

If my memory serves me, I believe that this collection you refer to is not for Paul himself. Rather he is taking the collection to the church of Jerusalem for the poor Christians there, for their care and support, and so as to be above board in everything, he has even assigned trusted man to go with him so that there will be no talk of embezzellment.

In fact throughout the Bible, it seems every collection taken was for the materially poor saints in another church elsewhere, never for the preacher. Quite unlike now, where the preacher is wealthy and living a good life while there are poor widows and orphans and people struggling to make a living in the church, giving to support the lavish lifestyles of the pastors.

ThyWordIsTruth
Oct 23rd 2009, 06:38 AM
I just remembered this great sermon, give it a listen, I'll think you'll like it.

http://www.gty.org/Resources/Videos/V8242-251

Brother Mark
Oct 23rd 2009, 07:09 AM
If my memory serves me, I believe that this collection you refer to is not for Paul himself. Rather he is taking the collection to the church of Jerusalem for the poor Christians there, for their care and support, and so as to be above board in everything, he has even assigned trusted man to go with him so that there will be no talk of embezzellment.

In fact throughout the Bible, it seems every collection taken was for the materially poor saints in another church elsewhere, never for the preacher. Quite unlike now, where the preacher is wealthy and living a good life while there are poor widows and orphans and people struggling to make a living in the church, giving to support the lavish lifestyles of the pastors.

I don't know very many wealthy preachers. I can't imagine too many professions that should be paid more than a pastor if we go based completely value of service rendered. And it was God who ordained that the gospel provide a living for preachers.

1 Cor 9:18
14 So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.
NASU

Paul understood something about giving and receiving though and he was not greedy.

Acts 20:33-35
33 "I have coveted no one's silver or gold or clothes. 34 "You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my own needs and to the men who were with me. 35 "In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
NASU

But he did take from churches for himself and his ministry if the church was mature enough.

2 Cor 11:7-9

7 Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because I preached the gospel of God to you without charge? 8 I robbed other churches by taking wages from them to serve you; 9 and when I was present with you and was in need, I was not a burden to anyone; for when the brethren came from Macedonia they fully supplied my need, and in everything I kept myself from being a burden to you, and will continue to do so.
NASU

So we have record of Paul taking money from churches that supported him. Yet, he would not take it from Corinth because they were babies. He was concerned that if they paid him, they would be hindered in hearing what he has to say. What a sad commentary on the state of the Corinthian church that they were so concerned about their money that Paul refused to take it! Paul interestingly enough considered it "robbery" for another church to pay him while he ministered to Corinth because according to God's ultimate plan, it should have been Corinth that was paying him.

I understand why people don't want to give to charlatans. But I don't get this idea that people resent a preacher of the gospel making a lot of money. When I read how some were willing to give their very eyes to Paul because of what he had taught them, I think "what gratitude!"

Firefighter
Oct 23rd 2009, 11:17 AM
No. The church is small and doesn't have the money to buy the equipment to do that kind of thing nor the technical know how.

Rip the CD to MP3 and then get an account with these guys and upload it. It's free! http://www.sermonplayer.com

Partaker of Christ
Oct 26th 2009, 12:48 AM
I don't know very many wealthy preachers. I can't imagine too many professions that should be paid more than a pastor if we go based completely value of service rendered. And it was God who ordained that the gospel provide a living for preachers.

1 Cor 9:18
14 So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.
NASU

Paul understood something about giving and receiving though and he was not greedy.

Acts 20:33-35
33 "I have coveted no one's silver or gold or clothes. 34 "You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my own needs and to the men who were with me. 35 "In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
NASU

But he did take from churches for himself and his ministry if the church was mature enough.

2 Cor 11:7-9

7 Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because I preached the gospel of God to you without charge? 8 I robbed other churches by taking wages from them to serve you; 9 and when I was present with you and was in need, I was not a burden to anyone; for when the brethren came from Macedonia they fully supplied my need, and in everything I kept myself from being a burden to you, and will continue to do so.
NASU

So we have record of Paul taking money from churches that supported him. Yet, he would not take it from Corinth because they were babies. He was concerned that if they paid him, they would be hindered in hearing what he has to say. What a sad commentary on the state of the Corinthian church that they were so concerned about their money that Paul refused to take it! Paul interestingly enough considered it "robbery" for another church to pay him while he ministered to Corinth because according to God's ultimate plan, it should have been Corinth that was paying him.

I understand why people don't want to give to charlatans. But I don't get this idea that people resent a preacher of the gospel making a lot of money. When I read how some were willing to give their very eyes to Paul because of what he had taught them, I think "what gratitude!"

There is a difference between giving support to a ministry, and a minister charging.

webhead
Oct 26th 2009, 03:49 AM
Had men followed the command to care for widows and orphans, to take care of the lame and the infirm, there would be no need for a welfare state.

V

The welfare state in the USA is not due to the lame and orphans for example, but rather half of the able bodied citizens not working.

Most welfare recipients in the USA are able bodied workers, who refuse to work an honest job.

Vhayes
Oct 26th 2009, 04:28 AM
The welfare state in the USA is not due to the lame and orphans for example, but rather half of the able bodied citizens not working.

Most welfare recipients in the USA are able bodied workers, who refuse to work an honest job.
But it started out as a way to care for widows, orphans, the disabled. Had the church done it's job, there would have been no need for a welfare state that could be perverted into what it has become.

webhead
Oct 27th 2009, 03:09 AM
But it started out as a way to care for widows, orphans, the disabled. Had the church done it's job, there would have been no need for a welfare state that could be perverted into what it has become.

Not so.

The federal government created the welfare state, not Christians.

The federal government brought this nation down when they started really perverting the constitutional laws in the mid 1800's.

The 21st century result is very disturbing to say the least.

Vhayes
Oct 27th 2009, 06:39 AM
Not so.

The federal government created the welfare state, not Christians.

The federal government brought this nation down when they started really perverting the constitutional laws in the mid 1800's.

The 21st century result is very disturbing to say the least.You can say "Not so" all you like and believe it if you like. i personally do not believe men and women of God did what they could during the Great Depression. Everyone was too involved in looking after their own well being. And look what we got - Social Security and the WPA. It grew from there. The Great Society is/was a complete mess and again, why? Because of people not taking care of people.

Cause:Effect

If people had been taking care of people, there would have been no NEED for the government to step in. Of COURSE the government created the programs - but they wouldn't have had anything TO create if people had been willing to care for each other, to treat ALL people as people.

Get me started on the reasons we're in the mess we are in today and I'll go on for pages. And pages.

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