In my years as a Christian, I have seen churches springing up here and there. Virtualy every individual that is groomed in the ways of God under a particular ministry has it at the back of his mind that he will establish his own ministry tomorrow. Therefore, it becomes a nightmare to the resident pastor that his subjects might someday move with a large number of his members. He devices measures to keep them to ensure that they don’t leave (both his subject pastors and his members)
Most of these trainee pastors actually don’t care to know if God really called them to have a ministry of there own or to serve under a ministry. They don’t pray fervently to know the will of God concerning the nature of their calling. Most times, they decided to establish a ministry of their own because of the unfavorable treatments they are exposed to by the pastor they serve under.
I have heard a couple of them share their experiences as assistant pastors in a church. A handful of the senior pastors care less about the welfare of their subject pastors. These serving pastors are saddled with greater responsibilities, yet, they get little or nothing of whatever the ministry is blessed with. Most of the members focus on the senior pastor and forget that those serving under him have needs and families to cater for. “He who cannot take care of his family is worse than an infidel” (1Timothy 5:8)
When tithes and offerings and other financial or material blessings come in, the senior pastor embezzles everything. I call it embezzlement. I have my reasons for terming it so.
In Acts of Apostles chapter 4:32-37, says that everything that was brought into the movement was shared equally among every believer such that no one had more than he needed and no one lacked. You can now understand why the Holy Spirit had to end the lives of Ananias and Sapphira when they decided to keep more for themselves (Acts 5:1-12)
These days, you can also tell that the Holy Spirit is not happy when a minister’s resources is more than he needs while those under him are feeding from hand to mouth. Thank God for grace which we must not take advantage of.
Every financial or material favour or tithe that comes to a church is not meant for the senior pastor or G.O. alone as many think. It’s meant for every worker in the church according to the book of Acts. It is meant for the upkeep of the church and the welfare of all the workers in the church who are the Levites of our days after a portion has been given to the pastors who stand as priests in the office of Aaron now (Numbers 18:21-32)
Denying your assistants and your workers in church their privileges is the reason most of them steal church offerings and tithes, break away to establish their own ministry so as to begin to enjoy those privileges personally (without knowing the will of God concerning it)
So, a serving pastor or a worker in a ministry comes to a senior pastor to request for money to pay for house rent or children school fees or to put food on the table for his family, and the response he gets is that there’s no money. But a week after, the senior pastor buys a car for his wife on her birthday. How would the serving pastor or workers feel? Why would a senior pastor be hoarding billions of any currency in his account, flying different jets, driving different types of cars and having houses all over while some members or workers in his church are impoverished and wallowing in abject poverty? That’s not Christlike. Everyone had enough resources and none had more or less than he needed (Acts 4) Judas carried the purse from which they bought all they needed. Do you know how much it costs to maintain a private airplane. It can feed a lot of less privileged ones for months.
Every financial blessing in the church is for the up keep of the church -both human and structure. Christianity is so blessed that resources at our disposal is enough to take care of the poor among us so much so that poverty would completely be defeated in Christendom. None had more or less than he needed!
According to the scriptures, the tithes are actually collected by the workers and after sharing the tithe, they give the pastor his own portion and they share among themselves the remaining (Numbers 18:21-32) But today, everything goes to the senior pastor and almost nothing for the workers hence, they begin to steal church funds (note that I am not writing this to justify the act)
If these funds are adequately used, poverty can never be mentioned among us, we will adequately take care of our own (less privileged, poor, orphans, widows, elderly ones) with little or no help from government. God has earmarked enough finance for his kingdom project but the spirit of mamon operating in the hearts of men will not allow it to be judiciously used. Yet, these GO’s sit down and point accusing fingers on political office holders. Blind leaders of the blind (Matthew 23) Have you not noticed the log of wood in your eyes as you try to remove the speck in your neighbor’s eyes?
The church is not supposed to have cases of school dropouts due to lack of funds by the parents of these wards. But what do you see or hear? That these funds are generated from the believers and used to establish schools, hospitals etc. Yet, members can’t afford to use the same facilitates because of the exorbitant charges. Members can’t send their children to the same school which were built with their offerings, tithes and pledges. Believers can’t get treatment in the same hospital that was built with their financial contributions.
A brother narrated his experience. They raised money to build a church in their community. They built halls as well for meetings and occasions. But when it was time for him to Wed in the same church, he had to do clearance which involves payment of money. Youth clearance and church clearance amounting to almost a large sum of money. To use the hall that was built with their contributions for reception, he was charged. All the structures were built by the members. The church leaders contributed prayers and raining blessings upon them. But you must pay to use the facilities.
Now tell me the difference between government policies and church approach towards our resources. Government collect taxes and use them to develop our communities (in countries where there is rule of law) otherwise they embezzle the funds while members in church develop structures with their earnings and pay heavily to have access to them.
I have watched believers with gifts being suppressed. What ensures the steady growth of a ministry is to identify the gifts operating in the lives of other believers and allow them to develop them. Many who do not allow such opportunities end up losing such gifted believers. If they are those to be released later, you can be sure it’s going to be a premature one. The church leader always wants it to be him disregarding the leading of the Holy Spirit. Yet Paul said let the worship be orderly giving room to everyone to operate as the Spirit leads (1Corinthians 14:40)
To be continued…
God help us.