This could be the number one criticism of people that don’t go to church. They’re just after my money! And honestly, I get it. I’ve sat in services where I was pretty sure the pastor was trying to overcome a budget deficit with his offering presentation. There’s a belief out there that pastors are getting rich off the money people give to churches. Honestly, it’s 99.9% ridiculous…but there are a few guys out there who are overpaid. All it takes is a few high profile guys who present their greed as needs, and the public starts to doubt the integrity of ministers everywhere.
But here’s the deal. Pastors who are faithful to preach the Bible aren’t going to stop talking about money. Let me tell you why:
1. The Bible has a lot to say about money.
There are about 500 verses on prayer and less than 500 on faith, but 2350 verses in scripture on how to handle money. Jesus taught more parables concerning finances anything else. And ultimately, your pastor is following Jesus and preaching the Bible.
Here’s a go-to pastor move: If you’ve got a problem talking about money in church…you gotta take it up with God. The job of your pastor is to try to communicate the thoughts of God as revealed in scripture. And God has a lot of thoughts about money.
2. How we handle money impacts our fellowship with the Lord.
Ultimately, this is a huge priority of your pastors heart. Jesus taught that the quality of our spiritual life is affected by how we handle our money. That’s a pretty big idea considering most people think of money as something totally separate from their spiritual life (maybe why they are bothered to hear about it in church?).
In Matthew 25, Jesus tells the Parable of the Talents. We find this in verse 21
His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.
The way that the servant handled the masters resources directly affected his relationship with the master – He got to experience the masters joy. Jesus also taught in Luke 16:11 –
If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches?
As a Pastor, I want our people to obtain the true riches in life. So I must help people with how to handle money.
3. Money is Jesus’ biggest competition for your heart.
This doesn’t make you greedy…it makes you human. Jesus knew this would be an issue for all of us, so He taught a lot about it. It’s so easy to find our security, value and comfort in wealth instead of Christ.
Matthew 6:24 – “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will hold to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
There are ways to live – using money to serve the Lord or serving money instead of the Lord.
Matt 6:21 – “For where you treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Part of the job of a Pastor is to call out the misordered “loves” in our lives. You need money…but you don’t need to love money. And when we do, we fall into a trap that leads to sorrow. And so by speaking about money, your pastor is actually loving you and helping you to love Jesus the most.
4. Much of life revolves around the use of money.
The stuff is everywhere. Most of us think about it every day when we’re shopping, paying bills, borrowing, lending, gift giving, planning for a vacation, etc. God knows all of this. And God cares about everything you care about. He’s a good Heavenly Father that wants to be involved in every detail of your life. Don’t keep him out of your financial life. And don’t let people insist that your pastor keep it out of the pulpit.
God and your pastor are not after your money. They want something for you…not something from you.