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Feeding the Flock Ministry
by on August 2, 2023
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A few years ago, in the midst of the COVID lockdowns, there was a famous televangelist that made a statement demanding Christian’s continue giving to their churches while getting laid off from their jobs. This statement both angered me and disappointed me all at the same time. I felt that this can not be the desire of God, and that individual’s such as these misrepresent the faith and sound biblical teachings.
As this subject came to mind earlier today scriptures began circulating in my mind. Allow me a moment to share them with you.
“Then some Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, “Why do Your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.” And He answered and said to them, “Why do you yourselves also break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? For God said, ‘HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER,’ and, ‘THE ONE WHO SPEAKS EVIL OF FATHER OR MOTHER IS TO BE PUT TO DEATH.’ But you say, ‘Whoever says to his father or mother, “Whatever I have that would help you has been given to God,” he is not to honor his father or mother.’ And by this you have invalidated the word of God for the sake of your tradition. You hypocrites, rightly did Isaiah prophesy about you, by saying, ‘THIS PEOPLE HONORS ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR AWAY FROM ME.‘AND IN VAIN DO THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE COMMANDMENTS OF MEN.’” Matthew 15:1-9
“Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7
“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Luke 6:38
There are many types of preachers among The Church today. Some of which, if not many, are wolves in sheep’s clothing. They prey on those that are influenced by church tithing doctrines, and those in need of something. They use trigger phrases like; “If you don’t give you won’t receive anything.”, “If you’re not giving your tithes then you’re not in God’s will.”, and there are many other forms of such things that are said as threats.
There are many ways to give however that have nothing to do with money or financial investments. When we read Luke 6:38 we see Jesus used a very common phrase He often uses throughout His teachings and that is, “For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” He used this a lot in His Sermon on the Mount. It’s in the beatitudes and in how we judge or condemn others. If we extend mercy for example, we will receive mercy from Him over flowingly.
Many times people give out of obligation or under pressure to do so even in hard times, but this should not be the case. If we have other commitments like taking care of our families or maintaining what He has already blessed us with, like a place to live, then we should not give to outside sources in those times. If we are on a fixed income that takes care of our daily needs, we should use that money for its proper purposes. For I have heard stories of preachers who visit such people to get money from them because they know that they receive a certain amount of money each month, and they know just the right words to acquire that money. However, the scriptures say to be a cheerful, thoughtful, and knowledgeable giver.
Some preachers will point to the elderly woman who gave her last cent to the temple and Jesus honored her by saying that she gave more than everyone else gave. Why? Because she not only gave what she had, but because it came from the heart. Like Paul said, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” She gave her last cent because she decided to in her heart and that brought her good cheer, and not out of obligation, threats, or seeking for something in return. For a true giver seeks to bless not be blessed in return.
Why do I believe this is important to understand? It’s because we are in a recession. Many people out there are struggling financially to the point they can’t take care of their families, or maintain a roof over their heads. We have in many cities people living in their cars or in tents because they could no longer afford to pay rent or mortgage payments. People are getting laid off in some places, or the cost of living has increased dramatically where their wages are no longer enough to live on. So having preachers push for money from their struggling communities or television audiences is not good or righteous, nor does it reflect biblical values.
Consider this, Jesus never said to a poor person, “Go, give what little you have to the rich man, or those who already have enough.”, but this is what some preachers imply by saying give when you don’t have it to give.
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