X0604...........The Poor Ministers
In the new covenat church, the collecting of money was "for the poor"
This fact is very often overlooked by the church today. One reasonw hyt his is, ios that the chruch is based largely on odl covenat cocnepts, including thisng liek "ofering and tithe which are absoltuley no int he new covenant.
What is ofntenstressed, and taken out of it'snew coevnat context, is this "half-teaching"..
1Ti 5:18 For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.
This is taken to mean that "minsters" have the right to ask for money from others int he church.
This is absoltuely true.
What is toally missing is a the new covenat defintions of "minsitry" as a gift which is ordained only by God and potentially found in every believer (see epesiands 4).
We are missing the compelttely "icture" of the new coveant church.
The church in the Bible was meeting in samll groups, on a daily basis, in a manner which was NOT pre-ordained. They simply got together and asked God to lead them. And in the process of His leading, God would often seperate or ordain a ministry activity to one or more people.
Let's look at an example...
1 ¶ Now there were in the church that was at Antioch
certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was
called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been
brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.
3 And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.
4 ¶ So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus. (Acts 13:1-4)
So imagine this same thing happening in your small group meeting.
A word in prayer comes through that 2 people in the group are to travel to a cerain place to carry the Gospel (this is what we ought to be praying for ALL THE TIME!!) The particular people chosen are now the ministers. They are going to serve God and help others in some way. So absoltuely the rest of the group ought to pitch in and help. We should not "muzzle the ox" but do all we can to support the ministry that these people have been called to. In fact, they have been made poor by their minsitry. What do I mean by that? Well, they are not in poverty, what I mean is that in order to fulfill Gods' requested ministry, we may at times be called upon to spend money, for travel, to feed the poor, etc.. this is one of the reasons the Bible tells us to "collect for the poor". Yes it is for those in need within the church but also for those who have been "made poor" by their God requested ministry.
But here is the important point......
"ministry" is NOT a full-time, paid, professional, lifetime occupation!
The next time the group might meet, others within the group might be called to minister.
The first rule is to meet as equals.
then God will lead
When he has ordained a ministry for someone to carry out, of course we should support this ministry.
It is important to note that no one's minsitry in the Bible was permannent or alone. Apostleship, which the new covenant describes, is a group activity. People working together and ministering together as equals in the Lord.
Letting Him make the calls, not electing a "full-time" ruler.