Asking For Money

Our church has been struggling financially lately. This has put me, the pastor, in a bit of a bind, not just a financial bind either. What do I do about this?

I have heard some people say that they never ask for money, they just go on faith and wait for God to provide. Is asking for money a lack of faith? Several reasoned answers.

1) It might be if it is done in a humanistic way: look how much WE can do if WE get so much money.

2) It might be if it changes your doctrine and compromises the truth and primarily feeds the belly of the church or its leaders.

3) Paul asked Corinth for money for some of his people. He guilts Corinthian church goers quite heavily to give money.

4) People who never ask for money but “simply trust God” seem to bring this up a lot, which is actually asking for money by drawing attention to the fact that you don’t ask for money.

5) I could go either way.

Since I’m bringing this up, I’ll cut the facade and go ahead and ask for money! As you consider your giving this year, remember a small church in Rhinelander, Wisconsin that faithfully preaches the Word.

Rhinelander Bible Church
PO 506
Rhinelander, WI 54501

8 thoughts on “Asking For Money”

  1. How big is your congregation? If it’s more than ten working adults, they ought to be able to support a minister.

    You could point out to them the divine plan of tithe-paying which Abraham, father of the faithful, observed. But maybe your church doesn’t follow that? If they don’t follow that under the excuse that it is Old Covenant, or something like that, then you should point out to them that the New Covenant requires even more giving (from a cheerful and willing heart), otherwise they are “robbing God in tithes and offerings”.

    I don’t think it is wrong to make the needs of the cause known to your members, like when Moses asked for offerings to build the sanctuary, or Paul took up the collection for Jerusalem. What I don’t like is when ministers ask again and again…like those TV evangelists…if you ever get on their mailing lists, it’s almost impossible to get rid of the stream of junk mail begging for money.

    You could also take up a part-time job, like the apostle Paul did at times. Maybe that would give the members an unspoken message?

    In the end, don’t forget that the Prince of heaven, who preached far better than any of us ever will, lived and died a poor man.

  2. My point is not to dump on my church! They have done a fine job supporting me. I have also done part time jobs throughout my years here and have no problem doing such a thing.

    Due to various events in our recent church history, we have fewer people to give and many are not in a financial position to help. Rhinelander, WI is not exactly a booming economy.

    My issue here is wondering out loud the line between testing God and going on faith. To not say anything seems to perhaps test God, perhaps play a part in pride, at least for me, not admitting we need help.

    So, in summary, my point is not to dump on my church. My point is to admit that our church is struggling right now and any help would be helpful. Now that I’ve let it out of the bag I will deal with regrets of probably not showing faith!

  3. Your point is well understood. It’s not just from a pastoral perspective always – I think it’s something everyone deals with to a certain extent. Whether it’s health or finances or just…life.

    And, in your case, it’s not the people or you…it’s the circumstances that have faced us all with the economy.

  4. Jeff, this may help, if doubt is creeping in, we need to remember who are source is.

    “A Christian is an impregnable person. He is a person that never can be conquered. Emmanuel became man to make the church and every Christian to be one with him. Christ’s nature is out of danger of all that is hurtful. The sun shall not shine, the wind shall not blow, to the church’s hurt. For the church’s Head ruleth over all things and hath all things in subjection.

    Therefore let all the enemies consult together, this king and that power, there is a counsel in heaven which will disturb and dash all their counsels. Emmanuel in heaven laugheth them to scorn. And as Luther saith, ‘Shall we weep and cry when God laugheth?’

    -Richard Sibbes’s The Bruised Reed.

  5. Something’s been bugging me all day – why does he say if it’s more than 10 working adults, they should be able to support you? what is that based on?

    Is that assuming each of them gives 10%? Doesn’t it kinda matter 10% of what?

  6. kelli,

    Yes, that is correct. I said “more than 10 working adults”. Even if they are making minimum wage, and they each give 10%, that still is enough to support someone else at the same income. It doesn’t allow for supporting family also, and/or church buildings. Do you think that’s too much to expect?

    I work at a home business where I go into people’s houses. I see many Christians with new wide-screen television sets and other luxuries. I’m not saying Jeff’s congregation is like that, but in North America, there are very few really poor people compared to other parts of the world where they actually suffer malnutrition (what was the latest UN estimate? 1 billion people don’t have enough to eat?)

    The Macedonian Christians mentioned in 2 Cor. 8 were in deep poverty, yet to supply the needs of their brethren in Jerusalem, they gave beyond their means. That’s way more than 10%. It was, of course, a one-time offering, but it showed the kind of spirit that God approved.
    Jeff, considering some of the scriptural examples of appeals for means (Moses, Paul), perhaps one thing that stands out is that they had a direct need which they asked offerings for. Maybe you should state what the need is, and how much is needed. The folks could feel like they were part of it when they gave, and they would also know when you had met the need.

  7. I mistakenly posted this on the wrong post, so I’m posting it here where originally intended it.Our church is falling behind in our budget likewise. My pastor is trusting Christ (I’m not saying your not Jeff) Like your church we are small in numbers, but we continue in a living faith.
    What does living faith look like? It looks towards Christ for it’s strength. Living faith fights the battle, spoken by Paul in 2Corinthians 4.

    7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. (2 Corinthians 4:7-11)

    The question came up in our home group about why would the Israelites want to go back to Egypt and be slaves? I answered because living by faith is hard, it requires something from us, it’s not a picnic, this life of living faith demands our efforts. Living as a slave, and having all your needs met is restricting, but at least they thought I won’t be naked and starving, I’ll exist.

    Living faith is discontentment with what I use to be, and satisfaction with all God is for me in Jesus. The life of faith is a war, with daily battles being waged against you by your own flesh, ask me how I know. Because everyday I feel like I’m in the wilderness, and wondering who am I going to trust to lead me through it, myself or Christ?

    Wednesday night, my pastor’s wife had a vision of Jesus standing before her during our worship time. He took by her hand, and as He did, she could see His nail scared hands, and she thought how could I not trust Him after seeing those scars and knowing what he did for me. Man, that puts this life of living faith in perspective, how can I not trust Him, who died for me.

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