9 Signs That Your Church is Serving Money
Updated: Sep 24, 2019
The Bible is clear. We cannot serve both God and money.
(Mark 10:25, Heb. 13:5, 1 Tim. 6:10, Luke 12:15, Mat. 6:19-21, Luke 12:33-34, etc...)
You know it as well as I do. As Christians, we're called to worship God alone. The love and worship of money is a dangerous, treacherous, and idolatrous thing. We must guard ourselves against it by keeping our faith in God, but believe it or not, our own potential infatuation with that green isn't the only one we should be worried about.
When Christians read passages in the Bible about money, they always apply it to themselves personally, as they should, but rarely do they ever consider such Scriptures as having application for their pastor, or their church.
The fact of the matter is that your pastor, your church's elders, deacons, and your local church as a whole are responsible to the same Scriptures about money that you as an individual Christian are. Since when did we start believing it was okay for churches to be greedy and money-obsessed anyway?
Because unfortunately, many churches and their leaders have become dumbstruck by those dollar signs over the past few decades, especially in America. It's quite rapidly and devastatingly wiped out the Christian church in a way that only a love for money could.
Like a tornado of greedy destruction, the Health and Wealth, or Prosperity Gospel, has not only become its own popular "Christian movement," but many churches and pastors that openly mock and ridicule such teachings have adopted the very same behaviors and strategies for their own churches in order to grow their ministries, put more butts in the seats, and more money in their own pockets.
What are those behaviors and strategies? Well, if you're at a church that exhibits these nine signs, you can be sure that they're utilizing them.
9 Signs That Your Church Is Serving Money
1. The Building is Expensive & Beautiful
Okay, listen. Is it possible for a church to grow in numbers and still be devoted to God and not money? Sure. It's possible. However, according to what the Bible tells us, it's not very probable.
Don't churches with a lot of people need bigger buildings? Yeah. So it's not necessarily the size of the building that matters, but rather, the cost that went into obtaining that building, and the cost that went into its appearance.
Churches that spend a lot of money on appearances, rather than the plethora of other much more important matters a church should be spending its money on, such as helping people in need or producing fruit within its community, is prioritizing material above God.
2. They Preach Tithing
While giving is a sign that a Christian is full of love and the Spirit, required or mandated giving by your church is a sign not only that they are legalistic, but also that they believe money is important to begin with.
2 Corinthians 9:7 is pretty clear when it says that a Christian's giving should be cheerful and between themselves and God, not compelled by the church or out of obligation. Our giving should come as a result of the Spirit within us, not the church pressuring us from without.
Lastly here, tithing is not taught or commanded in the New Testament at all. It is referenced as a law of the Old Covenant and with teachers of the law, but never are Christians told they must tithe in the Bible. Giving is a virtue that is encouraged and commanded just as being honest, forgiving, or doing anything else of God is, but it's all between us and God, not us and anyone else. Including the church.
3. There is No Financial Transparency
A church that goes silent when asked financial questions has a guilty conscience. Otherwise, they would just answer the questions. Christians are constantly told they must give cheerfully, freely, without greed, and without questioning anything by their churches.
Churches should be held to the same standard that individual Christians are, especially if they're preaching tithing and pressuring their congregations to give more money. Yet, they're not being held accountable at all.
In many cases, once someone does build up the courage to ask their pastor or church where all of the tithing goes, or how they spend those donations, or how much the pastor gets paid, they stonewall like a politician that's been caught in a scandal. This is a sure sign that your church is serving money.
4. There's a Cafe, Bookstore, Thrift Store, and/or Coffee Shop in Your Church or Owned by Your Church
There is one reason and one reason alone for why churches open stores, shops or cafes of any kind. To make money. That's it, and if you're church has one, two, or three of these, you can be sure that whether they "need" that money or not for whatever reason, that's why they have them.
Just think about it for a minute. Why do cafes, bookstores, or coffee shops exist OUTSIDE of your church? They're businesses, people. They exist to make money. If they weren't going to make money by opening them, they wouldn't open them.
So what? Who cares if they have a store that makes money, you say? I'll tell you what. What happened when Jesus found people selling doves in the temple? Need I say more?
One last thought on this subject. Ask yourself where the money to open that cafe, bookstore or thrift shop came from. Where did they get the money to build those profitable businesses in the church?
From you, my dear generous, giving Christian. They got it from you.