"...When He [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd." Matt 9:36

"Do not rob the poor, because he is poor... for the Lord will take up their case and plunder those who plunder them." Proverbs 22:22-23

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Steve Gaines Exports His Tithing Nonsense to Johnny Hunt's Church: Says Non-Tithers are Thieves, Shouldn't Be Allowed to Even Sing in Choir


"How can you say that you trust the Lord with your eternal soul if you don't trust Him with 10% of your money?....if you're not a tither you ought not to be singing in the choir and you ought not to be leading in any area of the church...some of you drove cars you stole from God...you won't get arrested, but I got news for you, God's got your number."

Steve Gaines is still at it, still preaching his tithing nonsense to church goers. This time he tried to sell it to Johnny Hunt's church members at First Baptist Church Woodstock on July 31, 2011, while Johnny Hunt was out of town on his annual summer sabbatical.

The lies and misrepresentations put forth by Gaines on this topic are absolutely breath-taking. In this short clip he does the following:

- mocks those who can't afford to tithe in these tough economic times, inferring that God does not understand or have mercy when a person suffers hardship and can't fork over 10% to their church;

- implies that a person who doesn't tithe is probably not a true believer, asking how a person can say they trust God with their soul, but they don't trust God with 10% of their income;

- said that tithing is "New Testament", and misused scripture by saying "Jesus said to do 'it' in Matthew 23:23". Not true. Jesus did not tell Christians they have to tithe in Matthew 23:23. But I'm sure Steve has been in touch with Jesus and knows Jesus meant to say that, and probably regrets that He wasn't clear enough on that point. Glad that Steve is speaking up for Jesus.

- said Jesus tithed, else "the Pharisees and Sadducees would have eaten him alive" for not tithing. Again, not true. Jesus was a carpenter, and the Old Testament tithe was for those in agriculture and who raised livestock. But again, Steve must have had a little one-on-one session with Jesus, or he has read some secret manuscripts that say Jesus tithed;

- told Johnny Hunt's church members that if they don't tithe, they shouldn't sing in the choir, or lead in any capacity in the church. Gaines once said that non-tithers shouldn't sing solos in the church: "I don't want to hear 'Betty the bank robber' warbling for Jesus" said Gaines. But at Woodstock he kicks it up a notch...now non-tithers shouldn't even be in the choir. Hard to believe a preacher would put an entry fee or price tag on being able to use one's musical gifts;

- he accused those who don't tithe of being thieves, driving stolen cars bought with money stolen from God. Says they won't get arrested, but "God's got your number"

Gaines is skilled. It is not easy to put that much nonsense and false doctrine in a 2 minute span of a sermon. It takes a real professional like Gaines to pull it off.

Discerning Christians need to consider this question: if these mega church pastors are willing to lie to us about what the bible says concerning our money, what else are they lying to us about to further their own personal agendas? What other doctrines are they selling from the pulpit that are not true?

I do thank Gaines, as his tithing rant from Sunday will serve as a perfect contrast to the final installment of Wade Burleson's sermon we've been looking at. One preacher heaps Old Testament law on the backs of believers, while another preacher dares to teach what the New Testament teaches concerning grace giving. What a contrast it will be.

And I would say if anyone was robbing God Sunday at Woodstock, it might be Gaines himself....ask First Baptist Woodstock how much they had to pay Gaines to come in and preach. My sources tell me a preacher may earn up to $5000 honorarium to preach on a Sunday morning and evening at a mega church.

Steve, perhaps YOU are the God robber, and perhaps God's got YOUR number.

Stop beating the sheep, Steve.

66 comments:

Seneca Griggs said...

Gosh, a Southern Baptist pastor teaches tithing? What is wrong with these people. Next thing you know they'll be pushing witnessing and missions.

Douglas said...

"Tithing" preachers like him are the theives, stealing from God's people and the non-Christian.

I was just looking at an article on tithing about an hour or so ago from here: Q&A

That tithing nonsense is a blight upon the Church of the LORD Jesus Christ. He and his ilk will give an account to God for their false teachings and especially for misleading people. What a stumbling block they are. Corruption (extortion) in the professing church and serious corruption in the world.

Here is a three part video series on tithing for those interested in the “true-truth” of New Testament giving:

What About Tithing?
- Part 1
“Is it necessary to for the New Testament / New Covenant Christian to systematically give at least ten percent of their income to the church in order to receive blessings from God and avoid a curse? That's the topic that Pastor Jim McClarty addresses in this series of videos.”

- Part 2
“In this second video, Pastor Jim McClarty addresses some of the common defenses of the tithing position.”

- Part 3
”In this third part of the series, Pastor Jim McClarty addresses one of the most common misquotations from Jesus concerning the tithe and offers his concluding remarks.”

Anonymous said...

You must stay awake at night listening and reading Baptist pastors' sermons so you can find something to disagree with. Don't you have a better use for your time maybe like working in your new church.

Man said...

Anonymous: Just because the post was "posted" at 4:45am doesn't mean that he wrote it then. On Blogger (and many other blogs) you can write blogs in advance and schedule them to be posted at certain times.


I hope this guy doesn't come to my church. I'll admit that there is an expectation for a tithe at my church, but they definitely do not beat it into you. And this is a mega.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Anon - actually quite often I receive emails from people now when their preacher says something outrageous.

And what do you do, first thing in the morning you're scouring the Internet for religious blogs you disagree with? Shouldn't you be having your quiet time at 7:57 am? Why discourage yourself and look at critical analysis of your pastors?

:)

Sharon said...

I think it would help if instead of a guy up there yelling at the audience and getting paid lots of money to do so, he could maybe hold a question and answer session at the end, kinda like they do at debates. Or people could submit questions in writing, and he could go through them and answer them.

WAIT! That could never happen. Why? Because that would destroy the whole set-up of the church. You'd be questioning the Man of God. That would be wrong. You'd have to study the Bible for yourself, instead of having your Bible knowledge come through the preacher. You'd have to commit the sin of thinking for yourself.

I think the Catholic Church didn't like the idea of the people reading the Bible directly because it cuts out the middleman-the Pope or priest. But I don't think they really needed to worry too much because people are generally ignorant of what the Bible says and still depend on their preachers for the information from the scriptures.

And that's how these preachers get away with sermons like this.

hopeandfaith said...

Can you imagine how visitors to Johnny Hunt's church must have felt. What a shining example of God's love that Gaines was presenting. I picture a meeting of Gaines and his minions looking over the tithing records of every member........and then sending out hurtful letters, and even worse, jumping over fences (small ones) to personally witness to each person who has not hit the quota of 10%....if there is no food on the table, do they get a pass????

Thy Peace said...

Steve Gaines is a small time mafia shakedown artist.

Anonymous said...

As a former member of Gardendale while Gains was there,he had another hobby horse that he liked to beat the sheep with. It seemed that he wanted the everyone to become more charismatic.I remember him saying that he doubted that anyone was saved if they refused to raise their hands or clap during the raise hands, clap part of the service.

Anonymous said...

Wow, Six (6) figure salary along with a summer sabitical from carrying from the flock of sheep.

Some say this is a sarcastic blog - I say, listen to these sarcastic preachers who think nothing when they throw in digs at the very people that support them.

Once a long time mega member, but no more.

Thanks for the video W/Dog.

Anonymous said...

You must stay awake at night listening and reading Baptist pastors' sermons so you can find something to disagree with. Don't you have a better use for your time maybe like working in your new church.

August 6, 2011 7:57

He is working for the "church". He is pointing out false teaching, twisting of scripture to benefit the wolves. You just don't like it because you support the wolves.

Follow Christ. Not man.

BTW:You sound like the church lady on the old SNL.

Anonymous said...

Steve Gaines protected a pedophile minister of prayer, Paul Williams until it became public and the outcry enormous.

He is qualified to preach anywhere? He does not think little kids should be protected from predators? Johnny Hunt approved Gaines' actions in protecting the pedophile minister? I can only conclude the answer is yes.

WishIhadknown said...

It’s not so much that Gaines protected PW; it’s that Gaines could not have been bothered. Gaines’ statement that “he didn’t know what to do” does not jive with his history of quick and decisive action when faced with the more run of the mill sexual immorality.

WishIhadknown said...

This is classic Steve Gaines. It is his shtick and it has brought him fame and fortune and it is about as deep as he seems to be able to go. He is pretty much a one trick pony.

There was nothing new in anything he said. In fact, I cannot remember a sermon that he did not weave tithing into somehow. For some reason, people see it as “preaching the word of God with great authority,” especially with those of us with a strong bent toward works and an unclear understanding of grace.

I am still amazed that people refuse to see how divisive his preaching is. Instead of drawing people to the Savior, this kind of preaching only draws people to the preacher and creates an us against them mentality.

WishIhadknown said...

Oh, Sharon, I almost fell out of my chair laughing when I read the first paragraph of your post. HA HA HA good one! Loved it.
Be blessed.

Bojac said...

This is so sad to me. Coming to the end of my pastoral mininstry and seeing the attitude of some of our younger ministers is appalling. The damage this is doing to our dear Lord is incaluable. I too was taught in the 50's by those who believed the tithe was a new testament teaching. They either believed it or found it reasonated with church members as a way to raise money. My view changed as I studied carefully what Paul said about giving on the first day of the week. He reminded us that God loved a cheerful giver. I don't think we should ever allow how much we give monetarily with our devotion to God. More important to me is how much do i do in any and all areas to lift up our Lord.

Anonymous said...

Some Woodstock comments about Steve Gaines:

Johnny Hunt
RT @BryanCBailey: Altar packed @fbcwoodstock tonight full of people praying to finish strong. Awesome night. #fb http://twitpic.com/5z1zia
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
Reminded again tonight what a privilege it is to serve on staff @fbcwoodstock Thank you God for using an idiot like me. #humbled
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
Altar packed @fbcwoodstock tonight full of people praying to finish strong. Awesome night. #fb @johnnymhunt http://twitpic.com/5z1zia
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
"David's prayer in Psalm 51:12 is the prayer of a man who wanted to finish well." -Dr. Steve Gaines
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
"Is the way your living now the way you want to meet Jesus?" -Dr. Steve Gaines
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
"Idolatry is spiritual adultery." -Dr. Steve Gaines
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
"You cannot be intimate with someone you're stealing from." -Steve Gaines, talking about #tithing
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
"By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God..." http://esv.to/Heb11.3 #fb
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
RT @BurkParsons: Humility doesn't come by acting to make ourselves seem humble to others but by striving to forget ourselves for others. #fb
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
"Jesus didn't come to build a crowd, He came to build His church." -Steve Gaines
31 Jul

BryanCBailey
Jesus is not a southern baptist; he's not republican, & He's not American. Jesus is not commonplace. He is the Holy, set apart, Son of God
31 Jul

Anonymous said...

Tithes are mentioned more in the Old Testament while Alms are more in the New Testament. Why is this and what is the difference?

Junkster said...

I have no desire to defend Steve Gaines, but I think that he is a true believer in the storehouse tithing doctrine, not consciously lying. I doubt that he has ever done any serious study on the matter, and his dedication to the doctrine very likely makes him unwilling to even consider any other viewpoint.

But even if his view were right, does he really not want anyone serving in the church who is guilty of sin? If so, he needs to stop preaching now and start selling used cars. (Actually, I think he should stop preaching anyway. And I would buy a stick of gum from him. But that's just me.)

Anonymous said...

Before it was common for Southern Baptists to clap and raise their hands does Steve Gaines think that they were all lost?

Anonymous said...

There are a couple of nice things about going to another church to speak. First, they have not heard your illustrations so you can use the ones that you enjoy most. Second, you can recycle an old sermon.

It is a mini vacation.

Anonymous said...

Gushing praises of Steve Gaines by @ Woodstock

Morning Gush

Evening Gush

Anonymous said...

I am convinced that the majority of mega-church pastors, if not all of them, are devoid of any attributes necessary to be shepherds to God's people. Their contributions to the meaningful spread of the Gospel are summed-up by Macbeth, in Act 5, Scene 5 (that's a great scene). Thank God for the thousands of good, dedicated, humble pastors in small and medium sized churches all over the country.

Anonymous said...

"Thank God for the thousands of good, dedicated, humble pastors in small and medium sized churches all over the country.

August 6, 2011 5:18 PM


Amen, sweet words - they (above) are truly the "shepherds" of the sheep. We live in a society of new ministers whose coming out of seminary who are being taught everything but how to be a shepherd to their people.

Anonymous said...

"We live in a society of new ministers whose coming out of seminary who are being taught everything but how to be a shepherd to their people. "

So they will be knocking on your church door soon, looking for a job.

Anonymous said...

I would not want to face the Lord and have to explain to Him how I was able get the people to fork over more money than He was able to do through The Holy Sprit.I don't see that these legalists has any faith that the Lord can bring about anything that He ordains without their carnal efforts.

New BBC Open Forum said...

For anyone who wants to get a good idea of the heart and mind of Steve Gaines, listen to the "sermons" here, specifically the 3-part "Ministry of Encouragement" series.

He really let his hair down there because he was preaching to the choir (preacher boys). Remember this was pre-Bellevue, 2003, and incredibly, he's even worse today. I took (really sketchy) notes during all three. Mind you, I'm a horrible note taker, but looking back through these several years after I listened to those tapes, they're classic Steve. He pretty much covers everything we've ever heard him say in these three "sermons."

You're welcome to follow along.

The infamous "Betty the bank robber" comment comes at the 20-minute point in session 1.

New BBC Open Forum said...

As a former member of Gardendale while Gains was there,he had another hobby horse that he liked to beat the sheep with. It seemed that he wanted the everyone to become more charismatic.I remember him saying that he doubted that anyone was saved if they refused to raise their hands or clap during the raise hands, clap part of the service.

Yep, and I bet you remember hearing him frequently harp on how females should dress modestly, too. Of course, the rules didn't apply to his own daughters.

Anonymous said...

"Of course, the rules didn't apply to his own daughters. "

He just has them hide behind the rose bushes when strange men come around.

Anonymous said...

"It is a mini vacation"

NOT..... this sermon came on the heals of a "well deserved" $10,000 family vacation package to the WaterSound Beach the week before.

Not to mention Johnny Hunt's "5 weeks" of paid time off to allow him to make more money speaking elsewhere just like Steve Gaines just did, preaching at Woodstock church and then at Charles Stanley's church on wednesday.


Keep those Monies coming sheepies, God's Storehouse Managers really needs um.

Sharon said...

WishIhadknown,

Thanks. Glad I made you laugh! I'm guessing it's not a practice they'll start anytime soon. lol

WishIhadknown said...

Uh, no.
If you remember I have posted several times on Bellevue’s so called Communication’s Committee. The Committee was introduced to us as a way to express our, the members’, concerns and that they, the committee, would present them to the church leadership who would then address them. Not what happened.
In the words of the committee chairman who scolded us for “wasting ours and the committees’ time,” “the decisions have already been made.”

And then there was the business meeting that ended abruptly and the microphone was cut off when someone they did not want to be heard got up to speak.

No, the democratic ideals that used to typify Baptist churches are dead or dying in most.

Anonymous said...

For the most part Southern Baptists no longer holds to certain doctrines that had defined us as baptists before the hi-jacking of the convention beginning in 1979. The priesthood of the believer has been replaced by the 'STRONG PULPIT.' Historically Southern Baptists have not been a credal people but that is no longer the case. Even the autonomy of the local church has been weakened except when it is convenient such as establishing a data base for predators. The CR movement was more about politics than the enerency of scripture. I have read that one of the main leaders of the CR movement later admitted that you would have had room to put all of the liberals that were teaching in the seminaries in a volkswagan.

New BBC Open Forum said...

I have read that one of the main leaders of the CR movement later admitted that you would have had room to put all of the liberals that were teaching in the seminaries in a volkswagan.

They certainly wouldn't have had you believe that back then. Why, our seminaries were being overrun by the "libruls"! We had to "take back" our seminaries. We were "under attack" and it was a Holy War! I think things would have turned out differently had Al Gore invented the internet 30 years sooner.

Anonymous said...

"The priesthood of the believer has been replaced by the 'STRONG PULPIT'."

Steve Gaines explaining that God only reveals things to Pastors

Anonymous said...

"...if these mega church pastors are willing to lie to us about what the bible says concerning our money..."

our money? Since when is it our money? It's God's money and yes you must give back to God out of oobediencece to God.

Who ever you are, your credibility is no better then those you are complaining about. Why should any Christian listen to you?

Anonymous said...

Instead of a congregational form of government; especially in the mega churches; we see a government very much like the Catholic Church.

Anonymous said...

I would like to reccomend a book about the wars of the CR movement by Russell Dilday; 'Columns/ A Glimpse of a seminary under attack. The publisher is Smyth & Helwys. Dilday was the President of Southwestern Seminary and a victim of the wars.

Anonymous said...

"It’s not so much that Gaines protected PW"

What do you call keeping him on staff after he admitted his crime? If that is not protecting a pedophile IN MINISTRY, I do not know what is. He allowed him to be in a postion where he interviewed women who had been molested as children and asked for details. I know one of them personally.

Had this not been made pubic, Williams would still be there.

Anonymous said...

"our money? Since when is it our money? It's God's money and yes you must give back to God out of oobediencece to God."

you meant to say it is really steve gaines' money that HE gives to God for us. :o)

Anonymous said...

Do you have to tithe to sing in Bellevue's choir?

Anonymous said...

Do you have to tithe to sing in Bellevue's choir?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"Do you have to tithe to sing in Bellevue's choir?"

Depends who you are, but all paid employees of Bellevue are checked to see if they are tithing or not. A matter of, if you want the job, you will tithe. Don't quite know what happens if you are a member of another church.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"Do you have to tithe to sing in Bellevue's choir?"

Depends who you are, but all paid employees of Bellevue are checked to see if they are tithing or not. A matter of, if you want the job, you will tithe. Don't quite know what happens if you are a member of another church.

Anna A said...

As a former Baptist, I am saddened by the trend away from the doctrine of the priesthood of the believer. That was one of the distinctives that I saw disappearing while I was on my way to another branch of Christianity.

About tithing. It is taught in the Catholic church, but not emphasized either in preaching or in action. Most Catholic (and Orthodox) churches raise money through festivals, etc. Yesterday, while at a local art festival the nearby Orthodox Church had several side booths, selling food and imported items from Russia and the Ukraine and icons.

Sharon said...

Maybe ya'll have just highlighted the basic problem. I remember growing up in a Baptist church (ind. fund.), it was considered an awful thing for churches to have bake sales to raise money. I think our church thought it was pretty pitiful that a church would have to resort to such, since the church is supposed to be made up of dedicated Christians who give their lives, money, everything to the cause of Christ.

I can see how that makes sense. But real life doesn't work that way. If you think fundraisers are sinful, you have to preach on tithing and try to guilt people, make them afraid, etc. in order to get enough money.

Sharon said...

But also I guess churches back then weren't as desperate or their budgets weren't as big, cause they never said, "God's gonna get you, if you don't pay up."

Ron said...

When I think of how tithing is taught by much of the American church, I think about the book of Galatians. It is an easy and seamless thing thing to do to mentally substitute the emphasis on circumcision with tithing. What did Paul say about those who taught bondage to the Law? Let them emasculate themselves. The emphasis I see on tithing reflects a gross misunderstanding of grace and the Gospel.

Some personal promo: here is a post of mine on the tithe that may be of interest:
http://ronclick.wordpress.com/2011/07/26/something-other-than-the-floodgates-of-heaven-opened/

Anonymous said...

Correction: Russell Dildays book is titled 'Columns/ A glimpse of a seminary under assault' rather than under attack.

Long Time FBC Member said...

Anon said.....

" our money? Since when is it our money? It's God's money and yes you must give back to God out of oobediencece to God. "

That's funny, because when Mac Brunson received his 300K land gift, and other Pastors receive 10K family vacations and European cruises, they'll say it was a blessing from God.

How is that different from God blessing me with 60K a year in EARNED income??

I seriously doubt these " Pastors" are going to give up these perks. No sirrreee.....

They live by the old Communist adage "what's mine is mine, and what's yours is mine too " !

Anonymous said...

"Don't you have a better use for your time maybe like working in your new church"

NOPE> He is a pew sitter, but the word on the street, and on this blog, is that he is moving to Jim Smyrl's new church

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

If you're referring to me, yes, I am a big time pew sitter. I sit in a pew. And in a Sunday School class chair. I sat in a pew today, and I liked it.

And no, I have absolutely no plans in ever attending or joining Smyrl's church. If by some small chance I ever visit just to see what is going on, I'll blog about it and let everyone know.

hopeandfaith said...

People are leaving the church.....what is left???? Tv evangelists that prey on the hearts of those who need God's salvation. We never hear of other ministers who will step up and condemn false teaching....how does a Benny Hinn continue to blaspheme his way to untold riches....because we are silent. We would rather never say an unkind word than to stand up and cry out against this doctrine straight from the "pit". Using OT to beat on the heads of your congregation just does not carry over into the Age of Grace we are now under. As long as people are afraid to question, to allow false teachings in church and on the airwaves, we will not have an urgent regard for truth. There is an awakening....albeit a small one. You can see it in the empty pews. Perhaps mega preachers are afraid that their time is up...that a new congregation is coming back....to take back what was originally theirs....congregational rule.

Patrick Latham said...

Where in the Bible is "congregational rule" taught? I disagree with Gaines' doctrine concerning giving and I am thankful for the critique of it on this blog. But I also disagree with the comments that support some sort of congregational "rule." This too is an unscriptural doctrine that is more "American" than it is Christian. Democracy is not a Christian concept and it is not Christ's way of shepherding the church. The Ultimate Leader of the church (universal and local) is Christ.

Let you think I support a man-centered, dictatorial form of church leadership, let me say I whole-heartedly agree that the saints have a voice in the leadership of the church. Acts 6 speaks of major church decisions being contingent on congregational approval (see verses 3 and 5).

While all believers should have a voice within the leadership of the church, the Bible also affirms that God also uses deacons and pastor/elders to lead the work of ministry. These leaders are set apart according to 1 Timothy 3:1-13 and Philippians 1:1. Their office in no way makes them more significant than other saints. It only ensures that they are dedicated to teaching the Word (Acts 6:3; 2 Timothy 3:14-16), leading in prayer (Acts 6:4), and leading in ministry (1 Peter 5:2). As Pastor/Elders do this, they are to avoid being controlling dictators (1 Peter 5:3).

The temptation to be a bully and tyrant is not limited to pastors of mega-churches. All pastors are under a Scriptural mandate to avoid sheep-beating and pastoring for personal gain (1 Peter 5:2-3).

My concern is that we may unwittingly respond to the pastor as dictator model with an equally unscriptural doctrine -- the local church as a democracy heresy. The "democratic" model of church government has possibly led to as much division, dissension, and self-centered promotion as the pastor as dictator model.

Answers to this debate aren't easy, but it seems there is model for church leadership that transends all man-made models (dictatorship vs. democracy).

The New Testament teaches that Christ is the Chief Shepherd of His Church (1 Peter 5:4) This may seem like a mystical, confusing concept. How can Christ lead His church when He is not physically present among us?

While He is not physically present, He is spiritually present through His Word (1 Timothy 3:16), His Spirit (Galatians 3:2), His giftedness within believers (Romans 12:4f), and His established leaders for the local church (Ephesians 4:11f). These leaders never should "rule" in place of Christ and they are not "God's man" in the sense that many modern believer's claim. Rather, Christ's leadership is given as they perform their God-given tasks of lovingly teaching and leading ministry (Ephesians 4:12-14).

Of course, there will be times for voting on certain, practical matters as the church did in Acts 6, but this does not make the church an American democracy. Such rule was unheard of in the ancient world. Rather, congrgational input shows that the church is made up of people who all have the same Spirit and that unity of spirit is important within a body of believers (Romans 12:4-5).

WishIhadknown said...

Deacons are not leaders they are servants elected to care for the widows and orphans. Elders/pastors are supposed to be shepherds.

The truth be known, the modern church pastor has more in common with the priests of Apollo and the orators of Greece than the Elders of the early church.

Interesting fact. Adrian Rogers taught that pastors had no more or less filling of the Holy Spirit than any other believer. He also taught that pastors did not receive any more insight into scripture than any other member. My how times have changed.

WishIhadknown said...

The church as a democracy may not be a scriptural model but it is a traditional Baptist model, as affirmed by the phrase, “congregationally approved.”

WishIhadknown said...

I always laugh when someone makes the discord and disunity comment. Let me ask you something, are you married?
Do you and your spouse agree”
A. All of the time
B. Most of the time
C. Some of the time
D. Never
Is the couple that answers D any less married than the couple that answered A.
The reality is that a lack of discord is probably an indication of apathy more than unity.

Patrick Latham said...

Wishihadknown, I agree that there is an unhealthy form of pastoral leadership being pushed and produced among modern churches. I also agree that much pastoring could be likened to leadership among ancient and modern false religions.

As far as deacons being leaders, i agree that they are primarily servants. However, their service ultimately leads to some form of leadership within the church. I believe this is portrayed in Acts 6. The second office of the church, that of deacons, initially put down murmuring within the church through its service. If that doesn't qualify for leadership (putting down murmuring among God's people) I don't know what does. I am aware that leadership is a term that is not in the Bible. But its essence is seen in the actions and service of men like Moses, Joseph, Isaiah, John the Baptist, Paul, Peter, and early leaders like elders and deacons. Leadership is simply the act of leading people towards a goal or destination. I'm thankful that deacons often do this through their service. So, Yes! Deacons are servants, but they often lead through their service.

In regards to the dissension argument, there is no need for you to laugh. While your example regarding marriage may seem helpful at surface level, it is flawed in that it doesn't even address what I was talking about. i never said that a divided church was not a church (as implied by your stattement that a divided marriage makes a couple unmarried). I merely stated that both dictator-led churches and democracy-led churches often have unhealthy forms of dissension. The democratic church is not superior to the dictor-led church and it is against Scripture. The Bible should be our standard in this matter.

Whatever our model, unity and harmony is to be our aim. Jesus (John 17:20-21) and Paul (Philippians 2:2-3) prescribed such.

WishIhadknown said...

as implied by your stattement that a divided marriage makes a couple unmarried).
I never implied that actually quite the opposite.
Servants as leaders? So that would make servants masters.
I will again defer to Dr Rogers teaching since he pointed out that in the new testament sense, deacons are servants and not leaders. They have just evolved into leaders over time.
As far as unity and harmony is concerned I don’t think it has ever worked out that way. Like I have said before if harmony and unity is that important then you should agree with me and there you have it, harmony and unity.

WishIhadknown said...

How does appointing men to serve widows and orphans create a leadership position? The deacons did not put down the murmuring through leadership they did it by their service.

oldcalvinist said...

Well, I'm gonna have to go "Anonymous" on this one.....sorry.

I'm a member of a 1000-member SBC congregation with a minor-celebrity pastor.

On several occasions I have seen the "Fall revival" type visiting preacher paid $25,000 or more. That's for 5 services. (Sun-Wed) Several of those speakers are, of course, personal friends of the pastor and make regular appearances.

We have the "month off with pay" thing going for the pastor, too. He's not quite up to Brunson's $300,000 but it's a much smaller congregation.....so "per head" our man is getting about $150/year/member. Maybe that will become the new salary metric!

It's a racket!

Anonymous said...

For Steve Gaines: In my letters of the Apostle Paul BIble HE NEVER EVER advocates front ended capitalism (before prospering). And he advocates brothers to NEVER EVER be a burden on laity (in letters to the Thessalonians). This is truly false fundamentalism at its worst and accusatory of the laity. Paul perspective on stealing was not laboring. IT HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THOSE WHO DID NOT TITHE. Call these guy to debate Russell Kelly on this. What do they do...well they do their own version of their blog from the pulpit away from him. Kelly still gets very few invites on this. See if he'll be in the seminary chapel next year.

New BBC Open Forum said...

Interesting fact. Adrian Rogers taught that pastors had no more or less filling of the Holy Spirit than any other believer. He also taught that pastors did not receive any more insight into scripture than any other member. My how times have changed.

Indeed.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

NewBBC - that video of Gaines is frightening.

"God speaks to the pastors."

Of course Gaines would think that.

When he says "how could you trust God with your eternal soul when you can't trust him with 10% of your money"...stop and think about that.

That statement puts the church, and Gaines as pastor, in the role of God. How is giving money to Bellevue Baptist church "trusting God" with my money? Because they are speaking for God, and God speaks to them, thus, if you're going to "trust" God with your money, who do you give it to? Why the church and the pastor through whom God speaks.

It really all fits together.

WishIhadknown said...

WD, it's more frightening than you think. I wish I could share more but I can't without betraying confidences from others who are in the know.

Anonymous said...

So you should give 10 percent of your income in order to also provide free labor to your neighborhood megachurch, i.e. sing in the choir? Or usher or whatever else you are doing as FREE service to the church?

Gateway Church in Southlake, TX has at least a dozen or so members that I know of firsthand, who work piddly jobs such as coffee bar or child care at the church for minimum wage or thereabouts.

This church, in what is literally the richest community in the country, cannot "afford" to pay its lowly staffers a livable wage.

Instead, they send these same people into their benevolence program, where they are browbeaten and told "this is where God wants you." AND, as part of the benevolence program, it is demanded of them to pay 10 percent.

Gateway, which has 20k members and three locations, believes that you should perform work for them at slave labor and on top of that, give 10 percent. I can't say what their budget is because they do not even bother to publish their yearly made-up figures as other churches do.

What corporation can you think of that gets away with this? Tell its "investors" or tithers that they don't need to know where the money's going. They teach that "you gave it to God so why do you care where it's being spent?"

I guess the pastor figures these poverty-stricken members should feel honored to help donate to his Porshe.