Scripture: Acts 8:
18 When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money 19 and said, "Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit."
Observation: The Church should be focused on the love it’s putting forth more than the money its bringing in.
Application: Our whole country is in financially tight times and money is an issue on the minds of individuals as well as businesses and churches to. I am not saying in this post that the church should not be aware of and conscientious of our financial responsibilities. I’m not saying to turn a blind eye to the income and financial realities that we are facing in our churches, but at the same time we must be careful not to allow money to crush our ministries.
We can not become so concerned about bringing in new money, that we lose focus on our main objective which should be winning lost souls to Jesus Christ. I have a friend who is active in missionary work in Romania and he told me about how when he goes to pray for people, they often try to give him money because they are used to the priests requiring contribution for prayer. It seems so sad that the institution of the church has become nothing more than a den of thieves in some places.
We here in America could be slipping into similar circumstances if we fail to be diligent in our faith and decide that we need to take matters into our own hands. How far away from the mindset of Simon the sorcerer are we really? I don’t like to talk about individuals who practice commercial religion on TV, Radio, Internet and other places so I won’t. But I’m sure you’ve seen things like this and know what I’m talking about.
"For a love offering of only $_______ you can get this inspiring ________" … 20 Peter answered: "May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! 21 You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. 22 Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord in the hope that he may forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. 23 For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin."
Prayer: Lord Almighty,
Help us as the church universal to be aware of our financial situations, but not obsessed with them. Help us to take care of our responsibilities but not neglect our ministries. Grant us the faith to know that you will help us through our times of trouble because we are doing your work.