As you might recall, I opened the discussion last winter in "Takin' It Up Wit Da Book" , and then reviewing what John McArthur's views are on the doctrine of "storehouse tithing", and a multitude of articles in December 09 and January 10 on tithing. One of my favorite articles was the Steve Gaines claim of non-tithing members driving stolen cars and living in stolen homes, and declaring tithing to require "undesignated" gifts. A real classic.
I am going to return to the topic of tithing, giving, spending, raising money at our churches during the month of September.
During the month I will be using information in Mary Kinney Branson's book "Spending God's Money" (link to book at Amazon.com here) - a book written in 2006 describing her experience working for the head of the North American Mission Board Bob Reccord (dubbed "Hollywood Bob") and the wasteful spending practices at the NAMB. If you have not read this book and you give money to a Southern Baptist Convention church, I highly recommend it - a real eye-opener as to how donated funds were spent at NAMB during those years. Branson also gives practical advice to Christians when it comes to giving.
In the forward of Branson's book, the writer dubs a quote from Branson's book as "Branson's Law". It is:
"It all boils down to a simple formula: The extent of misuse is directly proportionate to the distance between the giver and the spender."
The less transparency, the more concealment there is on details of how money is spent, the more apt there is to be waste and abuse. Our government and publicly owned corporations have realized this for decades, but the church crowd is slow to get on board. We've even seen a recent example of local government spending gone amuck with little oversight and clever accounting practices.
So let's return to the topic of tithing and accountability and spending in our churches today.
Should make for an interesting September.