Thoughts on work and the early church pool…

Archie Rhines I’ve notice paydays are more fun if you have a job. Otherwise, jobs are really overrated. I had a job once, but the boss kept wanting me to do stuff that wasn’t fun. ~just sayin’

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Ann Johnstone

Ideally, you find the occupation you like doing best and then get paid for doing it. The trouble is, as soon as money enters the picture, the job becomes more complex – too many vested interests.
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Archie Rhines

That is true Ann. I just came from a health care patient who I was hired to help. I would have done it for free. I love the guy and feel for the situation he finds himself in.

But now says he has too many expenses to pay me. I find my estimation of jobs confirmed by you and circumstance… It would have been better with no expectations of pay.

Ann Johnstone

This seems to be an on-going problem in Christian circles – and I agree with you entirely, Archie.

A friend of mine, a Christian counsellor, frequently finds this among her clients. Once their problems are seemingly resolved they think they can forget about paying – and this is her only means of income. When I did a lot of speaking to Christian (and other) groups, the leaders would ask me in advance what I thought they should pay me. I said, “Whatever you feel God is prompting you to give” … and of course, there was the occasional group that, well, just didn’t pay. I struggled with that at times as I always put a considerable amount of time into preparation. Yet I must say that, in the end, there were enough generous payments to balance the ‘freebies’.

The thing is, you don’t mind when you know at the outset that it’s a voluntary thing you are offering to do. It’s when you’ve been led to believe that it is an honourable transaction of services for money (or other payment), yet the outcome turns out differently!

It helps us to understand some of the problems faced by the early Church in their experiences of community living.

Excellent thought on community living tie in. I missed it. Thanks Ann.
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37stories

It is the desire of my heart that God be Lord of my life. Lifeโ€™s experiences have killed the old man and God is building a new creation in me. I look forward to experiencing the new man God creates in the old vessel known as Archie via "God Spots".

9 thoughts on “Thoughts on work and the early church pool…”

  1. Hi Archie;

    Interesting discussion.

    In this world it is difficult to survive without coin.

    Services rendered in expectation for wage should be established at the onset. If the service is performed, payment should be forthcoming.

    The problem at times with people of “faith” is they expect God to provide the money to pay, and when it doesn’t come, they figure, “Oh well”, it is meant to be and I will be forgiven if I don’t pay. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Meanwhile the person who expected to get paid has to look at hungry eyeballs when he gets home.

    For situations like this, Elijah comes in handy. Pay or fry. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Oh boy, have I preached on this! The Apostle Paul made it clear that those who are called to the preaching and teaching of the Gospel ought to be able to live from their calling. It’s not that we wouldn’t do what we do for nothing, as we usually do anyway, but God expects us to be able to make a living. Try not paying the plumber the next time you partake of their “calling”. See how that goes…

  3. Hi Archi and Richard;

    Sorry to disappoint you fellas, but I don’t recall Jesus or Paul or Elijah getting paid.

    I know Jehovah’s Witnesses who go door to door spreading the “word” One even got punched in the face one fine Sunday (my step son) but he kept on going. They don’t get paid either.

    I really don’t believe passing on a message of hope should be compensated for. The compensation is in the doing, not the receiving.

    Edgar Cayce supposedly healed people and was also a believer. He did it for nothing.

    Just my take is all.

  4. Edgar Cayce was a whack-o. Sadly as he has passed, I am confident he has truly become enlightened.

    As for no compensation…. Ich. Come on now! No whack-o works for free. They each have their game.

  5. Hi Archie;

    When you describe “works”, being compassionate to others and telling them of your faith is not “work” is it?

    I think through the course of time people who take on the job of priest or pastor or tent reviving evangelist or rabbi or cleric convinced the “flock” they should be paid, because they spent a lot of time studying what was written and no one else could read, like lawyers.

    Is that really required today?

    Was it really required then?

    We both spend a lot of hours per week on these subjects, but I don’t expect anything back from it.

    I never did, maybe that’s why I am poor.

    Maybe you guys are on to something ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. The answer to this discussion is found in 1 Corinthians chapter 9. If, after prayerfully reading this chapter, one still feels that we ministers do not have a right to partake financially from the ministry then there is no much anyone can do to change that opinion.

  7. Hi Archie and Richard;

    This is my last comment as you are my friends and I don’t want to upset you with my thought process.

    When two or more are gathered together that is defined as “church”. Now if member A chooses to pay member “B” to be the facilitator of spiritual education for the two member church, that is between the two of them, but not really fair to member “A” as he or she belongs to the same “Church” and is as high in the ranking.

    Some decades ago when I felt the “call” I pursued a few different paths hoping to become a pastor, for I believed that it was something I should do.

    I contacted the Billy Graham organization and pursued a course of correspondence with a “Reverend” who was kind enough to tell me what all the pre-requisites were.

    After a while my mind questioned a few things, so I asked the kindly “reverend” about my concerns.

    “You know the apostles never went to divinity school or received a degree. As a matter of fact there were a few uneducated fishermen in the bunch and one woman named Mary who another church though was a hooker.”

    “To be ordained, you must follow the process,” declared the Reverend.

    “That leads me to one other question. Why do you have the title of reverend when Jesus warned against that in Matthew. Now I am no genius, but the words Jesus was said to have spoken were pretty clear to my way of thinking and was not intended as a metaphor.”

    The good reverend never responded to the question.

    I kind of see things as black and white, and admit there are some gray areas in life that is difficult to discern as being black or white.

    We are all in the same boat as being ignorant of much.

    But when we claim to follow a teaching, shouldn’t we attempt to follow the teaching of the person who we claim to follow and ignore the others who “interpret” for him?

    Isn’t that how religious dogma and ritual is formed?

    Do either of you think that clergy of today really represent the way of Jesus?

    Jesus walked and talked to people and was open to questions. He didn’t need to recite chapter and verse of books that weren’t even written yet.

    He attended weddings, talked to prostitutes and women who had many lovers as well as soldiers and tax collectors.

    Maybe I see it differently. It would sorely disappoint me if I discovered that Jesus, Mary or the apostles accepted money for passing along what they knew.

  8. Ich… you have to deal with I Corinthians 9… people are to be paid for the work they perform… Professional clergy are no different. As to whether they are living the life of Jesus? Likely, some are. Likely, many aren’t. It doesn’t seem that Christlikeness is a necessary character trait to gain employment as clergy in some circles.

    I suppose the apostles even had a “for profit organization” and “tax exempt” was not invented yet, as they were taxed. At one point they had to pull a coin out of fishes’ mouth to pay their taxes due. So in my opionion, not much has changed from then to now.

    Some love Jesus and incorporate Him in their lives and the fruit they bare proves it out. Others choose to live life according to their own logic and intelligence and bear whatever fruit they choose appropriate.

    I much prefer living my life aligned with God, enjoying the presence of Jesus, empowered by the Holy Spirit.

    Dude you could have been a hired gun for Billy Graham and you blew it! lol

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