Dear Pastor Whoever….
I worked hard over a number of decades for my income and so do you.Yet there’s a difference between us. Let me explain….
I was a self-employed electrician when I discovered Christ. After hours,I put in much time ministering (as did many others). Ministry, to me,simply means doing what Jesus directs. Jesus gives an assignment, andwe either obey or ignore this assignment. Simple. For this I have nevercharged or collected a dime. The Lord ‘gave’ me a Bible verse way backthere: “Freely you have received, freely give.”
So I worked “freely” while you collected a paycheck. Jesus worked atno charge, though He was supported through contributions, and so didevery NT person that served Him. You might think, “It’s easy for himto criticize; he’s never been a pastor!” But I am not criticizing…. not youor anybody else. Someone who has failed the Lord so many times andin so many ways has no right to trash a brother. But I do ferociouslycriticize the religion that employs you, a religion that lavishly spendsmoney intended to finance Christ’s great commission.
You might conclude your pay should be equal to those employed in theworld system. But they are hirelings, almost every one of them, just likeI was. Jesus has never hired a disciple to do His bidding. “Freely give” has never fizzled over the centuries. Thousands upon thousands ofsalaried church personnel does not alter, “Freely you have received, freelygive.” Pastors are exchanging eternal rewards for a salary.
You are in a difficult space. You do it all because you are paid. And youare paid because you do it all. And you do it all because you are paid.Around and around and around. If I were you I would run, not walk, fromthat church system. After the Lord told a friend to shun all religion, hereturned his credentials to his denomination. That’s my suggestion to you,my brother-in-Christ. Your effectiveness will not lessen but increase.
Yours in Christ Jesus,