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The Church is Not a Bank

Updated: Mar 28, 2022

Written by: John Sernaque


CS - Counsels on Stewardship (1940) Chapter 15—No Better Than Sacrilege

That which has been set apart according to the Scriptures as belonging to the Lord, constitutes the revenue of the gospel, and is no longer ours. It is no better than sacrilege for a man to take from God’s treasury in order to serve himself or to serve others in their secular business. Some have been at fault in diverting from the altar of God that which has been especially dedicated to Him. All should regard this matter in the right light. Let no one, when brought into a strait place, take money consecrated to religious purposes, and use it for his advantage, soothing his conscience by saying that he will repay it at some future time. Far better cut down the expenses to correspond with the income, to restrict the wants, and live within the means, than to use the Lord’s money for secular purposes.—Testimonies for the Church 9:246, 247. {CS 79.1}

God established His treasury for a Holy purpose. God instituted His plan of benevolence to allow us to return a portion of what belongs to Him that we may glorify His name. The means are for the use of furthering the plan of salvation, and never for any one’s own secular use, which is no better than sacrilege. God’s treasury is not a bank or a lending institution. Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God. Do not mix the two. God knows everything. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones. Proverbs 3: 7-8.

Our Father, God almighty,

We thank You for providing for all our needs in abundance. We faithfully give back to You the portion required from us. We pray that no one will misappropriate these means purposed to carry out the plan of salvation. We pray that if any are misusing Your treasury, that they repent of their sins. We pray they will learn to live within their means than to use Your money for their secular use. Let these means go to work for perishing souls in so desperate need of Your gospel truth. We pray for wisdom and understanding to do what is right in Your sight. We thank and praise You, in the name of Christ Jesus, we pray. Amen.

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