I is sad to see how some folks are abusing the church for self-gain; and how it leads to the sin of many. The greed of man is great, and it seems to be a conforming spirit within the church, corrupting their vision, which in these latter days is ever growing in producing wavering instead of true righteousness. Has the church becoming self-righteous? Is vision now days that of plain sight, or does it extent beyond? As Christians, we should never allow the wrongs of another to determine our actions; neither should our lack in good deed be justified by another’s sin. Also the spiritual leaders must wakeup to their responsibility as shepherds. When a spiritual leader starts running a church as a business, that leader has lost his/her way. Their purpose has changed from that of serving to being served; and according to Jesus, this is not biblical: “The greatest among you will be your servant “ [Matt.23:11].
This teaching is available in PDF here – YOUR VISION beyond plain sight
Take for example founding verse of the ministry of Gospel Addicts Global: “Send us around the world with the saving power of Your Word; and Your eternal plan for all mankind” [Psalm 67:2 / TLB]. Not every member of the ministry might be available to go around the world, not every member might have the time to spend endless hours in ministry work. It goes beyond where you have the time or opportunity to travel for the work of the ministry, it goes beyond being a church planter, it goes beyond being called into full-time ministry; it literally means, being part of a vision. You have a portion according to vision. If we are to abuse the vision, drive, or authority we are to function in, the ministry will not survive; it will suffer under self-gain, together with many souls. Although the ministry might be growing, but what we will be producing in others will be corruption; and corruption leads to poverty, and poverty leads to death.
I will use Gospel Addicts Global Church as an example in this segment, because I don’t want to come across pointing finger to any specific individual or organisation; rather, I want to highlight the challenges a true ministry might face due to the corruptions of unworthy works; and how that can effect you as an individual.
Over the last few years, we have seen great potential in the vision the Lord has given us at Gospel Addicts; and we have seen what this vision can produce. The aim of the ministry is to reach as many souls around the world with the saving power of God’s Word; and God’s eternal plan for all mankind [Psalm 67:2 / TLB]. Although we have up to date only run as an internet ministry, the demand is great for a physical work [ministry] to be formed [and we are currently working towards that]. With thousands of souls reached worldwide, and a membership of nearly 2’000 tracked followers; we see the definite need of establishing a base church. Many of the ministers who has connected to our ministry is from needy countries around the world; and are in desperate need of [outside] support due to the poverty levels in their countries/cities. They are in a great need of spiritual education and support. There’s many souls lost in remote areas of the world, while many more are lost due to corruption and abuse of authority in the body of Christ worldwide, even in well established first world countries.
Vitality of Vision [beyond physical sight]
Vision in ministry is single handed the most vital part of ministry as well as individual growth. The book of Proverbs chapter 29 and verse 18 tells us; “Where there is no vision, the people perish; but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” Keeping the law is what brings us into divine vision, it leads us beyond physical sight; it gives us purpose. Looking then at 1 Corinthians 3:3 which tells us; “For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strive, and division, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?” When vision becomes obscure, division takes place! When the church be divided in vision, then devil wins… Simply put, with no vision, there’s division!
The vision of the church in general has been obscure by the luxurious living of its leaders. Vision is driven by action; and when the members of a church sees little action in its leaders, but lots of gain in leadership, it creates an imbalance. For clarity here:
- The church has been commissioned to win souls [28:19-20], but if the spiritual leaders see themselves to high to step out and win souls, it creates division in the doings of the entire body.
- The church has been commissioned to be witnesses unto Jesus [Acts 1:8]; but if the spiritual leaders see themselves to be office bearers only [4:11 / Apostles, Prophets, Evangelist, Pastors, Teachers], but do not function outside of the church [the body], it creates division.
- The church has been commissioned to share in good tidings [2 Cort.8:3], but if the spiritual leaders grows fat on the proceeds, it creates division.
No one in the church, no Christian, irrespective of their position or title, is exempt from winning souls. No one in church, no Christian, irrespective of their position or title, is exempt from preaching the Gospel to the lost. No one in church, no Christian, irrespective of their position or title, is exempt from giving. We are to model what we preach; for one action can speak louder than a thousand words.
I have seen churches where evangelistic teams take to the streets, having only one or two leaders with them. I have seen churches on outreach campaigns, having no pastor with them. I have seen churches giving tithes and offering, where majority of its members are poor, yet the pastors and leaders are rich. What kind of picture does this paint to the world out there? These types of behavior in the church is not only painting an awkward picture to the outside world, but it is causing the falling away of its members within as well.
Less and less members in a church show interest in evangelism, because some think their position in church has exempted them from the ground works. Less and less members in a church show interest in witnessing unto the lost, because some think their position in church has exempted them from preaching outside of church. Less and less members of a church freely give, because they don’t see the funds of church being used to impact the lost and grow the church. This is not godly, it is not the examples we should show forth, neither examples we should follow.
Get a hold of the vision of your church. If you see that the leadership is not following in the vision they claim, then you address the church. ‘Is not all the scripture given by the inspiration of God; and is it not for profitable doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness?’ [2 Tim.3:16]. The problem in most churches is that its members are not aware that this verse is applicable to everyone, not only for the use of leaders; but also for the use of members when they see leaders diverting from the vision and purpose called for. However, beware, for Proverbs 15:10 says: “Correction is grievous unto him that forsaketh the way; and he that hateth reproof shall die.” Those are though words, but for those who are humble, they shall have a humble response.
One of the biggest dividers in church in these latter days is money! Folks have become reluctant to give in –or- to a church, because of a vast majority of leaders growing fat on the proceeds while the rest of its members are infested with poverty. Jesus did say, ‘…for the poor you will always have among you…’ [John 12:8]; but that does not justify having majority of a congregation poor while leaders are not. The inheritance in Christ has been given to all who believe [2Cort.8:9/Eph.1:11-17], however, it is the ignorant that remains poor. Proverbs 20:13 says; “Love not sleep, lest thou come to poverty, open thine eye, and thou shalt be satisfied with bread.” The eyes are the windows to the soul [Matt.6:22-24], the eyes gives vision; and he who lacks to see, lack vision and remains poor [also see Prov.31:7]. ‘It is for the lack of knowledge that people perish’ [Hosea 4:6].
Many in the church have been deceive to give, because of the self-concealed greed from gain. Cleverly constructed teachings have made many feel guilty for not giving; yet, what does the Bible say about prosperity and success? It is well summed up in Joshua 1:8 says; “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”
Your prosperity and success is directly connected to the amount of meditating and application you do on the Word of God. So what does your giving do? Giving in church should be done in corrospondence of vision. You give as a partner, as a visionaire; not because you want to be blessed, but because you want to see more souls won unto Christ. ‘He that winnet souls is wise’ [Prov.11:30]. Winning of souls is an expression of love; and he who loves not, know not God.
Give in support of what you see the ministry can accomplish as a unit, not as your personal gain. You see, I have shared earlier with you the vision of Gospel Addicts Global Church. Our vision is according to Psalm 67:2 [TLB]; ‘…to reach as many souls around the world with the saving power of God’s Word; and God’s eternal plan for all mankind.’ Now, as the founder, I can use my money to reach people, I can use my money to establish a church. It might take long, but I am willing to do so; and with as little as R1’000 [South African Rands] from external givers since 2014, I have been doing just that; but how much more can we accomplish together when you partner with this vision. I’m not asking you to make me rich, because I am already taking my every cent and putting it towards reaching souls for Jesus; and will continue to do so no matter how much comes in. I am constantly spending my time and funds to reach the lost; while enrolled in higher level education for the furtherance of the Gospel through the ministry. My point is; I can use my money for ministry, but that is somewhat selfish then as I will be keeping all the blessings that come with giving to myself. As a leader, I want others also to be blessed.
There are many ministries doing the same around the world, but not near enough to reach every last soul in the 7.5 Billion people populating of the world today. You might be part of such a ministry; and although your prosperity and success is directly connected to the level and time spend, in not only meditating on the Word, but also applying the Word – there’s also definite blessings attached in your giving. Your tithe is an instruction from God accompanied by a blessing: “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it” [Malc.3:10]. Your free will giving also has blessings attached: “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again” [Luke 6:38]. However, the principle of giving is not tied to your prosperity and success, it is tied to love.
Your portion, as a joint heir with Christ, a child of God, is according to vision; for the extent of your vision is the boundary of your blessings. With the eyes of love, your vision is extended; and when your vision is extended, you see that you are blessed to be a blessing. This spiritual vision extends beyond plain sight, it looks onto future things; and it causes one to work towards fulfilling what one sees in future events. You have a good portion in Christ; all that you need to do is to tie it with a vision. This is what we ought to do in ministry, because together we can do so much more. Jesus said in Matthew 9:37; “…The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few.” Where have God placed you to labor [work] for the Kingdom. For every work there’s wages, and for every wages there’s expenses. Look for a need and do what you need to do in order to meet that need.