Generosity is part of the Christian life. And the money we give has to be looked after with integrity. The apostle Paul teaches on both these aspects of handling money. Money is a risky business, always with temptation.
John Stott looks at the Apostle Paul’s teaching (1 Corinthians 16 and 2 Corinthians 8,9) on Christian giving. How do we decide what to give? Is it ever right for our giving to go down, if circumstances change? For general use in church life, or with particular reference to a giving appeal or building project.
Chris Wright takes the same passages, and opens out the Apostle’s teaching on how to handle money with integrity and transparency. For Treasurers or for anyone who is responsible for special appeals. We are not aware of any other publication which does this job.
Questions included for personal reflection or for group discussion.
This is an unusual volume. Two writers look at the same passages from the Apostle Paul, and draw out complementary principles on handling money. John Stott focuses on Paul’s teaching on giving, Chris Wright on accountability. I can testify to the personal integrity of both authors; and to their deep desire not only to live by these principles, but to share them in a relevant way with God’s people around the world.
We need to see our giving as a response to God’s own generosity. There is a pastoral feel to John Stott’s writing – sometimes, as he says, it may be right to reduce our giving. We should always give thoughtfully, and keep our giving under review.
Churches tend to associate Paul’s teaching here only with a call to give. I hope this short book will help to change that, for these scriptures teach much more. The six principles of accountability that Chris Wright highlights are non-negotiable. A safety-net of accountability is critical for those in positions of responsibility, to whom money has been entrusted.
Many will be surprised by Chris’s assertion that, on the plain level of number of verses, the Apostle Paul ‘gives more text space to writing about issues relating to financial affairs of churches than he does to writing about justification by faith.’ The spiritual nature of this subject is clear, and the Apostle’s theology of money, as God-centred and mission-centred, deserves keen attention.
We shall all be shaped by either the values society imposes on us, or by the biblical principles clearly articulated here. So we need to consider Paul’s teaching closely. I commend the words of John Stott and Chris Wright as they challenge us to be more deliberate in engaging with this subject, as part of a God-focused, Christ-centred and spirit-led life.
Femi B Adeleye
Associate Director (Africa), Langham Partnership International
What people say:
“An excellent book to give to church members to help them in their regular giving, and also good for capital appeals like building projects.” – Amazon reader
Pre-order now: available 1st September 2020.