This article, on rejecting a business model in the church, deserves a close reading.

I make it a point not to share material from non-institutional sites, because of the divisive nature of those brethren. I’m going to make an exception here. Our people need to internalize these truths.

The balanced approach taken by the author of the article needs to be applied also to missions. Now my take on it:

Preachers, teachers and missionaries are not employees to be hired and fired. Such language is absent in the New Testament, for a reason.

They are fellow servants who are given opportunity to devote themselves fully to the gospel, as Paul did in Corinth when Silas and Timothy brought him offerings from the Macedonian churches.

“When Silas and Timothy came from Macedonia, Paul devoted himself exclusively to preaching, testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ” (Acts 18:5 NIV).

The NASB indicates that Paul “began devoting himself completely” to preaching the word after their arrival; before, he stayed and worked with Aquila and Priscilla as a tentmaker, but now he leaves that self-supporting effort to give himself fully to preaching.

So it is with servants today. Hence, churches and Christians must refuse to let money become a power lever but an enabler in mission and service.

To use monies in such a way as to turn fellowship in the gospel into a relationship of employer and hireling is to pervert that gospel as surely as if basic doctrine were changed from the teaching of the New Testament. In a sense, it is a doctrinal change, that of men placing themselves in authority over others where the Lord has given none.

What do you think?