Persons Who Thus Pledge

Written by: John Sernaque

Stewardship


CCh - Counsels for the Church (1991) Chapter 48—Counsels on Stewardship

Persons who thus pledge to their fellow men do not generally think of asking to be released from their pledges. A vow made to God, the Giver of all favors, is of still greater importance; then why should we seek to be released from our vows to God? Will man consider his promise less binding because made to God? Because his vow will not be put to trial in courts of justice, is it less valid? Will a man who professes to be saved by the blood of the infinite sacrifice of Jesus Christ, “rob God”? Are not his vows and his actions weighed in the balances of justice in the heavenly courts? {CCh 280.2}


A church is responsible for the pledges of its individual members. If they see that there is a brother who is neglecting to fulfill his vows, they should labor with him kindly but plainly. If he is not in circumstances which render it possible for him to pay his vow, and he is a worthy member and has a willing heart, then let the church compassionately help him. Thus they can bridge over the difficulty and receive a blessing themselves. {CCh 280.3}


The church is the body of Christ. We are to support our churches and our members, for no member can function without the other member. The support the church receives is purposed for furthering the everlasting gospel. We are not to rely on the government. But as the church receives support from its members, so do self- supporting ministries. Those in charge of these ministries are not to use these means for their own purpose. They are to use the money given to advance the ministry in the name of the Lord, and not for their mortgage, bills, clothing, etc. As Paul went about preaching the gospel, he sustained himself from his own wages as a tent maker. Being a Pastor in a self-supporting ministry does not release one from fulfilling his vows to God. Otherwise, while claiming to be saved by Christ, he is robbing God. Mercy to him as his day of reckoning draws nigh.


Our Father, God almighty,

We come humbly to the foot of Your throne asking for the forgiveness of sins. We are sorry if any of us have misappropriated any of the means that have been collected for Your purpose. We pray that as You weigh their actions in the balances of justice in the heavenly courts, that they will repent of their sins and honor their vows to You. Give us the gentleness and strength to labor with them kindly but plainly. Keep us all faithful in fulfilling our vows to You that we may continue to receive Your blessings from on High. We thank You for hearing and answering our prayers. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.


CHRIST JESUS MINISTRIES: An Official Supporting Ministry of the Seventh-day Adventist Church

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