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October 16, 2002

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"Faith Promise" Giving?

READER QUESTION:
I have heard those churches teaching "Faith Promise" as a missionary support. They said that in 2 Cor. 9:6-15 is the supporting verses for Faith Promise. I looked it up and it said for supporting the poor in verse 9.

I believe that is is wrong doctrine as verse 5 says that we are to give what God had provided us in extra and put it in good use for His glory. What I hear from churches is that they say Give by faith even when you are broke and God will supply your needs. Give by faith. It seems that they are saying that you must be broke all the time so that you can give away your money especially above so-called tithes and count on faith that God will provide you the money you just gave away.

What is your view on Faith promise and your experience during your "Baptist Years" with those Faith Promise?

I thought to myself why don' those missionaries go out to Mission fields by faith?

Let me know what you think or know as I tried to research on website but did not find any article explaining or proving it is a false doctrine like the tithes.

VW ANSWERS:
Item:
I have heard those churches teaching "Faith Promise" as a missionary support. They said that in 2 Cor. 9:6-15 is the supporting verses for Faith Promise. I looked it up and it said for supporting the poor in verse 9.

VW:
I think, by the context, that particular "poor" may be more the "poor in spirit" concept. (Mt5:3)

Item:
I believe that is is wrong doctrine as verse 5 says that we are to give what God had provided us in extra

VW:
vs5 doesn't speak of "extra"

Item:
What I hear from churches is that they say Give by faith even when you are broke and God will supply your needs. Give by faith.

VW:
Well...here, finally, we have agreement. Paul does speak about a gift being "presented eagerly" based on "what one has, and not according to what he does not have.." (2Cor8:12)

Item:
What is your view on Faith promise and your experience during your "Baptist Years" with those Faith Promise?

VW:
Well...I never participated in them. Back then, I didn't necessarily see anything 'wrong' with them (as I do now), but the Lord never convicted me that 'I' was to participate the way everybody else around me was being coerced to do. Usually, I was always so busy -doing- 'ministry' within the system, that I felt my 'time' likely far-overshadowed any amount of 'money' I might have put in an envelope.

Item:
I thought to myself why don' those missionaries go out to Mission fields by faith?

VW:
Many do. They certainly raise support...but they often are not guaranteed that everybody is going to send in their promised money in a timely fashion...so, quite often, missionaries go short. And sometimes, when some supporters fail to send in their promises...the "faith" for the missionaries comes when God provides what was lacking from other unexpected sources.

Item:
Let me know what you think or know as I tried to research on website but did not find any article explaining or proving it is a false doctrine like the tithes.

VW:
Well...I guess we have never really addressed it in the past. We have spoken of the "tithe" a bit...you can find the Q/A under "tithe" in the 'left' TopicSearch scroll box.

I don't know of any Scripture that teaches "faith promise" giving the way the so-called "churches" practice it. Israel, of course, had the tithe...but that was their "income tax". But they also had their "freewill offerings" (Ex35:29) which was a totally voluntary giving "..whose hearts were willing..." But that was never a campaign to promise to give something they didn't yet have. They would give out of the abundance of whatever they already possessed; which, in that particular setting, they had just come out of Egypt and had a good portion of Egypt's wealth given to them as they were departing. (Ex3:22, 11:2, 12:35-36)

There are a few places where it was recorded that somebody made promises. Jacob, when fleeing from Esau, promised to "tithe" to God, if God would keep him safe from Esau killing him, and bring him safely back home. (Gen28:20-22) Of course, there is the vow that Jephthah made, that if God prospered his way in battle, he would offer to God the first thing that came out his door to greet him when he returned home...and, to keep the vow he ended up killing his own daughter to sacrifice her, because she was the "first" out the door, coming to greet him in joy because of his victories. (Judges ch11) That would certainly be an example of why a person would -not- want to make promises indiscriminately. Num30:6 speaks of the "vow or rash utterance" of the lips. In fact, rather than teaching that we -should- make promises, Scripture actually warns against it... "It is better that you should not vow, than that you should vow and not pay." (Ec5:5)

And regarding the "vow", God was specific that if a person made a "vow" (promise), that the person should be sure to keep and fulfill it. (Deut23:21) But in the same context, God says, "But if you abstain from vowing, it shall not be sin in you." (vs22) But He is quite clear, "That which has gone forth from your lips you shall keep and do; that which you have voluntarily vowed unto Jehovah your God, what you have promised with your mouth." (vs23) How many of those who make their "faith promises" (pledges) end up flaking out? Such congregations tend to look down upon a person who will not go along with the crowd and the emotional manipulations of the pastor, to make a faith promise. But if one only makes the promise to "appear" righteous before the rest under their coercion, but does not fulfill it, that is "sin"; whereas, the person who does not pledge at all (even though being emotionally, silently - with those judging, guilt-inducing stares - condemned by the congregation), does -not- sin. According to God's Word, such pledges are not 'mandatory', like many 'baptists' (and others) tend to coerce people.

Thus, otherwise...what the so-called "churches" do today is not a Scriptural concept. Yes, they certainly took collections as the churches would help the saints in Jerusalem. (1Cor16:1-3) And while there seems to have been a support system for missionaries, it seems that it may have often been a case where the missionary would travel, being sent along from one congregation to the next, and that next one would further support them along the next leg of their journey after that, as Paul says, "..and be sent by you on towards Judea.." (2Cor1:16b)

I realize this is somewhat of a haphazard kind of reply. But I hope it somewhat addresses your concerns.

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My conversation with a 'church' rock band drummer

VW EDITOR:
As most of you know by now, in order to pay the bills to keep roof, food and clothing, the Lord has me running a little sign shop. It's just a little one-person business. The Lord sees to bills being paid, and then, when VW writing needs to be done, business is slow and I do a lot of writing at the store during business hours (I use a portable HD that plugs into the store or home computer, that I carry back and forth, with all the VW and website files on it, along with e-mail and Bible software, etc).

This past Friday a fellow came in, pricing some vinyl letters. And then, as we were discussing the matter, he further clarified that these letters were to go on his "bass drum". So, I asked, "For a rock band?" Yes.

Well...there are a few things where I have drawn the line regarding 'what' types of business I will do, and what I won't. I don't do anything for santa, halloween, easter bunny, gay issues, and...rock bands.

So, with this fellow; when he agreed that it was a rock band, I did as I typically do, then, saying that "I don't do work for rock bands" and 'thanked' him for coming in, turned to return to my desk, as a signal that he was also welcome to leave...that the conversation was finished.

Well...he snorted something to the idea that business must be good, that I didn't need his order...along with some other things. Whereupon I said that 'money' was not worth the 'moral' issue. He interrupted back with comments...so I then clarified, "moral and -spiritual-" issues.

So then, he came back at me...thinking he had me over the barrel with my arguments. I forget his exact words, but he was making it clear that he now had a clever come-back, because, he was part of a "christian" -church- rock band. In other words, how could I possibly be complaining about "spiritual" matters. Whereupon I tried to communicate, through his interruptions, that the term "christian rock" is an oxymoron, that the words "christian" and "rock" do not belong together.

Oh, but..."don't you think?" This is the pretender's favorite comment, "Don't you think?" They are helping to lead worship, and proclaim "Jesus" and "love" and... and... (All sweetness and sunshine) Whereupon, I then began being verbally strong with him, saying things that we have spoken of in past mailings about this whole scene, and about "false prophets" and "doctrines of demons" and said to him, point-blank, "Those, sir, are doctrines of demons." and... Asked him to leave. And as he insisted on lingering at the door to argue some more, I repeatedly asked him to "Leave! Now! Go!"

Or what? You gonna call the cops? And comments about "discrimination in business practices because of religious beliefs". (So, what happened to his "loving Jesus"?)

And, here is the clincher... as he finally opened the door to leave, he said, "I'll see you in hell! We'll be in hell together!"

Well...it's been awhile since I've had one of these types of confrontations. I've shared some others with you-all in the past. But this one is worth sharing because...

Out of this man's -own- lips came forth truth. Yes, he is part of one of today's so-called -church- "christian rock bands". But, as Jacob says, out of one side of his mouth were hints of "Jesus" and "love", but out the other side, when confronted with his true spirit, the admission that he is on his way to hell. Out of the same mouth "blessing and cursing". (Jac3:10) And mind you... his proclamation of his hellish destination was with the same matter-of-factness that we Christians speak of anticipating going to Heaven to be with the Lord. He did not curse me by saying, "-you- go to hell", as many do to one another. But in his curse, he was suggesting that I would be 'joining' him there...proclaiming his knowledge that, that is where he is headed.

So...does anybody still want to suggest to me that these rock bands are "Christian"? or... that they 'belong' in church?

Periodically visitors to the website will e-mail me, bass players and drummers, from so-called church "worship teams". They write to me in reaction to 'music' writings at the website, with the same arguments about "Jesus" and "love" and "praise" and "ministering to people", like this man Friday. But I -always- sense the same spirit in them that I did in this man. Most of them I don't bother responding to, because I know their spirit. This man I was somewhat 'forced' to address, because he would not let the matter drop, and was in-my-face with it...and his own mouth proclaimed his spiritual allegiance.

I must say, this was the first time I've had a person admit they were headed to hell; not hiding behind the infiltrative lies, insisting they are -really- "Christian" (And how DARE you suggest otherwise!!). And this might tend to help give weight to one thing that some who spend most of their energies exposing CCM and Rock say, that many of these rock musicians are overt satanists, infiltrating into the churches for -purposeful- subterfuge. The spirit of this man, and that of all the others I communicate with are the -same- spirit.

So, perhaps some of you who have been waffling, sitting on the fence, will now take better note, when we say regularly that "rock" and "church" don't mix. They are of different spirits. The Church is of God's Holy Spirit. Rock is of satan. And that, rock is one form of music that, by its intrinsic nature, CANNOT be -made- "good". It is evil (demonic) to-the-core.

If a person has been poisoned, you don't give them more poison to heal them. Wolves do not beget lambs. The world is sick in sin. You don't give them more of satan in order to win them for the Lord! You don't dress in 'black' like a lot of them do, with purple/green/orange hair and body piercings all over the place like they do, to point them to Christ! You say, "Don't judge a book by its cover"? Well, I have yet to see a book whose cover was not designed based on the book's contents, and its author's approval. Period!

"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty through God for pulling down strongholds..." (2Cor10:4) "Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father -IS-NOT-IN-HIM-." (1Jn2:15)

Period! Amen!

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