Church of Christ
Mission USA
(copied from Truth For The World)
         Money is needed for most of the things we do. This is true in the church as well as in our personal lives. It is the work of the church to

(1) Preach the Gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15,16; 1 Timothy 3:14,15),
(2) Edify the saved (Matthew 28:20; Ephesians 4:11-16), and
(3) Help the needy (Galatians 6:10; James 1:27).
     This work requires money. How can the church get the money to carry out the work God has given it to do?

The Plans of Men

        Denominational churches, established by men, have devised many schemes for raising money. Some of them run businesses such as selling second-hand clothing, and use the profits for church work. Others raise money by having fairs or festivals where members pay for food or entertainment. The profits go to the work of the denomination. Some churches established by men even use gambling to raise funds. They have games such as bingo or raffles and sell "chances" to people who hope to win something. These methods are worldly. They appeal to the selfish nature of man. There is NO authority in God's Word for such schemes (Isaiah 8:20; Colossians 3:17; Jude 3; Revelation 22:18, 19).

God’s Plan

       God has given a plan by which His church can finance the work He has given it to do. God's plan is recorded in I Corinthians 16:1,2: “Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.”

Please notice the parts of God's perfect plan:
(1) WHAT?The collection for the saints"
(2) WHEN? "Upon the first day of the week”
(3) WHO? “Each one of you.”
(4) DO WHAT?
"Lay something aside"
(5) HOW MUCH? “As he may prosper”
(6) WHY? “That there be no collections when I come.”

       Paul was collecting money from Gentile churches to help the poor in Jerusalem (Romans 15:25-27; 2 Corinthians, chapters 8 and 9; Galatians 6:6-10). God used this occasion to set forth His pattern of church finance. It was to be done upon the first day of the week for this is the time the church assembles to worship (Acts 20:7; Revelation 1:10). It involves every member of the church. None is left out. It tells us how much we are to give. It is not a tithe as was the practice under the Law of Moses, for we are not under that law today (Colossians 2:14; Hebrews 8:6-13). The more we have, the more we are required to give. It tells us the reason for giving. Funds will be available when needed.

Is This Binding Today?

       God has given a perfect pattern for the work, worship, and organization of His church. This plan is to be followed in all places, in all ages, until Christ comes again (Jude 3). Concerning the things Paul wrote in his letter to the Corinthians, he said: If any one think himself to be a prophet or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things which I write to you are the commandments of the Lord (1 Corinthians 14:37). First Corinthians was addressed, not only to the church at Corinth, but also toall who in every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord (1:2). This means it was addressed to those of us who are Christians today, as well as to all the churches of Christ in the first century when Paul wrote. Paul also said that he taught the same doctrine at Corinth that he taught everywhere in every church (4:17).

       God's way is best! His plan works if it is put into practice! If we will follow God's plan for church finance, His church will have all the money it needs to do all the work God wants it to do!

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Do We Have The Right To Know Where Brethren Stand?

by Perry Sexton

      What a ridiculous question I have asked.  Of course we do.  Why then ask such a question?  Because some brethren will not give an answer to where they stand on certain doctrinal issues.  Some lie about their stand, others try to hide their position in other ways, some say one thing to one and something different to another, and some straddle the fence, etc.

      These are not the ways of God and they must not be our ways.  When have you known of Jesus, His apostles, or other faithful New Testament brethren doing such as the above?  Why would one not answer good sound Bible questions with a plain easy to understand answer and with Scripture?  Would it not be obvious he is trying to hide something? 

Puzzling? Maybe Not

      It is a mystery to me how some brethren can study the Scriptures (such as given in the above article and much more) and come up with the idea that it is alright to accept funds from a denomination for the Lord’s work.  Maybe they are not studying the matter, or at least with a honest sincere desire to know the truth. 

      You know the “love of money” (I Tim. 6:10) works all kinds of evils and deceptions.  Consider: money is needed for TV, radio, foreign mission work, church buildings, school buildings, housing for student preachers, etc.  Or, my “friend” accepted funds from a denomination and I must protect him (cp. David’s “friends” in his coverup).  The last time I checked, the Bible also has something to say about “respect of persons” (Jam. 2:1).

      One old time preacher reportedly said “The devil has had that money long enough ....”  I have heard that saying from some modern day preachers as well.  Shall we follow men or God?  Where is Bible authority for accepting funds from a denomination for the Lord’s work (Col. 3:17)? (continued next issue)