Bernard Katz once said, "Organized religion: the world’s largest pyramid scheme”
Sadly, this is the same belief many Dechurched and Unchurched folks hold towards the Christian Church. At first, I felt offended hearing these excuses on why people did not go to Church. Somehow, I felt like the one getting gypped. Maybe they know something I do not know; maybe I have the bad end of the deal.
I would often ask those same people, ”Why don’t you like organized religion?” Only to get a, ”I don’t want to talk about it,” response. Pressing for a response only made the person shut down even more.
As I got older, I began to research this topic. I found one common denominator. People do not like ”organized religion” because they see the church as one big money making machine. Well, geees, if that is the case, I do not like ”organize religion” either, I said to myself.
I began to realize that people that think this way have two misconceptions.
First misconception, people blame the whole system because of bad experiences. Many of these folks had been in churches (or at least saw reports) that put a major focus on money. Maybe they say church financial scandals. I personally have seen my own share. I was part ofa deacon board that dismissed our Pastor for just that reason.
However, the logic just isn’t fair. We cannot discount the whole church because of a few rotten apples. It is as saying since my marriage failed, and I know of other failed marriages, that must mean, "Marriage doesn’t work”. This is simple unfair and untrue.
Second misconception, people see the Church as a business rather that organized family. People should give out of the generosity in their hearts. These people think that money should not be talked about at church. Others take it as far as suggesting that there should never be an offering picked up.
This logic is same as me saying, your organized family really isn’t a family but a business. Technically both are true. What is ironic with this misconception is that unorganized church finances lead to church financial scandals in the first place. Moreover, the idea that people are naturally generous is simply untrue. The reality is people need to learn to be generous; this only comes from sound biblical teaching.
Families that don’t have their financial business in order often find themselves in chronic poverty. What is even more Ironic is that the number one reason for divorce (broken families) is financial problems. How silly would it be if the wife and husband never set a budget and just winged their finances, each depending on the generosity of the other?
Being part of a church family is completely biblical. God wants us united in fellowship and love. Money is a necessity to achieve the vision of the kingdom of God, helping the poor and funding the preaching of the gospel.
The apostle warned against this in Hebrews 10:25 ”not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another...”
See you at Church!