Thursday, May 17, 2012
“And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, and said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves” (Matthew 21:12,13 KJV).
As today’s Scripture teaches, religion robbed people in Christ’s day… and it is still “the world’s most profitable business!”
The world is dotted with millions of ornate, massive cathedrals, structures built with exquisite materials, housing trillions of works of art and gold and silver vessels. Unfortunately, many were (and are) financed by poor, naïve souls who paid clergy in hopes of escaping hellfire. Christ’s words echoing, “Dens of thieves!”
One Christian author wrote that religion’s price list reads: “High money = high mass; low money = low mass; no money = no mass.” Pay the church and the church will pray! Church organizations possess large sums of real estate, and are always looking to expand… into your soul, yard, and home! BEWARE!
Beloved, if God required church leaders not to be greedy of material wealth (1 Timothy 3:3,8; Titus 1:7), this is a warning that many will be money-hungry. These individuals, seeking to support their lavish lifestyles, demand, “If you want God’s blessing, sow your seed of faith into our ministry.” These “donations” are often pricey, but when threatened with “God’s curse,” people have no choice but to give. Malachi 3:8-11 was written to Israel (1:1), not to us; we are under grace, not law (Romans 6:14,15). Grace is against tithing (obligatory giving).
We give of our resources to sound Pauline dispensational (grace) ministries and local churches, but we do not give to get God’s blessings (that was for Israel). Today, in the Dispensation of Grace, God has already blessed us in Christ (Ephesians 1:3). Now, we give out of gratitude to God, and we willingly give an amount “as [we] purpose in [our] heart” (2 Corinthians 9:6,7). The amount is not the issue; the heart attitude is!