Sunday, December 9, 2007

The Offering: Babel is Alive and Well Funded

A typical prayer for the church offering.

Lord, we ask you to take these gifts and use them for the extension of Your kingdom and to give You glory.

How is the offering used?

90% of offerings in a church go to the building and establishing a name for a group of people to rally around.

It seems to me that the Lord might consider those reasons as rather blasphemous ways of giving Him glory.

Gene 11:4 (NIV) Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the whole earth." …8 So the LORD scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city.

I used to be a pastor and I prayed for the offering many times. I never considered the above verse as having any context for us today. If anyone even implied, what I am now saying directly, I would have just saw them as either naïve or bitter or chicken.

I now see church systems and professional pastoring as a strange drug that I was so addicted to.

I quit a $60,000 a year job to go to school for 4 years to pastor a little church for $20,000 a year. When one of my most dedicated members got cancer and couldn’t work he continued to tithe in order to pay my income.

What is really weird to me now is that I could take money from him and his family so that my family could live in poverty. I actually considered what we were doing as “giving God the glory.”

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