24 But Jesus did not commit Himself to them, because He knew all men , 25 and had no need that anyone should testify of man, for He knew what was in man. NKJV
Have you ever wondered why Jesus who knew Judas's heart still chose him?.....and then gave him the role to look after the money?
4 But one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, who would betray Him, said, 5 "Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?" 6 This he said, not that he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief, and had the money box; and he used to take what was put in it. NKJV
A common occurrence is that thieves migrate to positions to manage money. In this case money which is freely given by people for one reason such as the needs of the POOR ....and use it for another purpose....ie their own indulgences!
Jesus was prepared to put Judas in the place where his GREED would be exposed
...and where he would eventually betray Jesus himself!
21 When Jesus had said these things, He was troubled in spirit, and testified and said, "Most assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me." 22 Then the disciples looked at one another, perplexed about whom He spoke.
23 Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved. 24 Simon Peter therefore motioned to him to ask who it was of whom He spoke.
25 Then, leaning back on Jesus' breast, he said to Him, "Lord, who is it?"
26 Jesus answered, "It is he to whom I shall give a piece of bread when I have dipped it." And having dipped the bread, He gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon. 27 Now after the piece of bread, Satan entered him. Then Jesus said to him, "What you do, do quickly." 28 But no one at the table knew for what reason He said this to him. 29 For some thought, because Judas had the money box, that Jesus had said to him, "Buy those things we need for the feast," or that he should give something to the poor. NKJV
Today many who are purportedly looking after the church's 'money box'....or the 'finances of the kingdom' are party to misusing and even misappropriating it ..and thereby betraying JESUS himself.
How is this happening you may ask?
At almost every church meeting elders/preachers like to use out of context extracts from scriptures (where the context is clearly that of charity being given for the NEEDS of the poor) to pressure believers to give generously or sacrificially. The money raised is then used as though it is theirs to do with as they please ....be it paying for salaries and building costs and operational expenses ... rather than for the needs of the POOR or itinerant ministers. (eg Acts 2:45, Acts 4:35, 1 Cor 9:1-15, 1 Cor 16:1-4, 2 Cor 8:1-24, 2 Cor 9:1-13, etc)
Sacrificial giving and generosity were ONLY ever to be directed to the POOR. Apostles who were itinerant were provided with hospitality and support!
How often is money, which is raised by mentioning or showing pictures of special needs such as supporting orphanages or starving/abused children, finding its way into general revenue rather than fully to those needs? (usually token amounts are sent...to appease guilty consciences)
Tithing scriptures (esp Malachi 3) which are clearly OLD Covenant are frequently being used to extort money from God's children including the poor.....when the scriptures teach that the poor were allowed to partake of the tithe (Deut 14:28-29)...This is another clear case of wrong doing!
The widow's mite being used as an example of how the poor should give.... when Jesus was using it as an example of how 'religion' goes about devouring widow's houses and exploiting the poor and weak....and even then does not appreciate their sacrifice!
The widow at Zarapeth who fed Elijah....is not an example of faith giving UNLESS it is a rare incident where GOD himself has commands the widow (rather than a greedy 'profit' conning her)....AND where it is FOOD that is given (not money).....AND where the prophet himself is starving....AND where the prophet stays around to see the widows needs met. OTHERWISE IT IS EXPLOITATION!
The other wicked deception is using the scripture as a tool to impose guilt by implying that 'if you love Jesus, you will give your money to God' (ie their 'church' organisation). Brethren the bible teaches that if you love Jesus and are a believer, you will show it by your love for the needy in the church ie the people who are the family of God and NOT the organization! (Mat 25:31-46, Gal 2:10, James 2:14-17, 1 John 4:16-18)
It is much wiser stewardship to give it directly to the needy yourself!...this is the teraching of the scriptures.
These examples are used in the New Testament version s of people 'robbing God'....by robbing his children and the poor!
These fund-raising tactics are a clear warning that such ministers are actually 'serving MAMMON' ... and NOT God!
11 Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon , who will commit to your trust the true riches? 12 And if you have not been faithful in what is another man's, who will give you what is your own?
13 "No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon" NKJV
Brethren, this is not merely my opinion......this is what Jesus says! (Note that this scripture is addressed to servants (ie ministers)...and not to God's children or sheep!)
There are NO New Testament scriptures which require giving to 'church organisations' ...... all giving is to be FREELY given and NOT under compulsion.....and certainly not under DECEPTION!
Freely you have received, freely give. NKJV (context of hospitality offered to itinerant apostles)
...that your good deed (ie to the POOR) might not be by compulsion, as it were, but voluntary. NKJV (context of POOR)
2 Cor 9:7-8
7 So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. (context of POOR)
Matt 17:24-27 (context of giving to church organisations)
"Does your Teacher not pay the temple tax?" 25 He said, "Yes."
And when he had come into the house, Jesus anticipated him, saying, "What do you think, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth take customs or taxes , from their sons or from strangers?"
26 Peter said to Him, "From strangers." Jesus said to him, "Then the sons are free" NKJV
Saying that believers must give to 'the local church' and that FIRST....ie before they feed their families IS A LIE from the pit of HELL (1 Tim 5:4-8)
1 Thess 4:6
6 that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such NKJV
10 They desired only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do NKJV
14 The LORD will enter into judgment
With the elders of His people
And His princes:
"For you have eaten up the vineyard;
The plunder of the poor is in your houses.
15 What do you mean by crushing My people
And grinding the faces of the poor?"
Says the Lord GOD of hosts. NKJV
"Woe to those who decree unrighteous decrees,
Who write misfortune,
Which they have prescribed
2 To rob the needy of justice,
And to take what is right from the poor of My people,
That widows may be their prey,
And that they may rob the fatherless. NKJV
An unrighteous decree would be where church rules require the poor to 'tithe' in order to be church members
5 And I will come near you for judgment;
I will be a swift witness ........ Against those who exploit wage earners and widows and orphans, NKJV
1 Tim 5:4-8
4 But if any widow has children or grandchildren, let them first learn to show piety at home and to repay their parents; for this is good and acceptable before God. ........ 7 And these things command, that they may be blameless. 8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. NKJV
Surely those who are taking from the poor and have their hands in God's children's pockets ARE ...like Judas...betraying Jesus for '30 pieces of silver'!
Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15 and said, "What are you willing to give me if I deliver Him to you?" And they counted out to him thirty pieces of silver . 16 So from that time he sought opportunity to betray Him. NKJV
Jesus said to him, "Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?" NKJV
What starts with a financial compromise will usually end in OUTRIGHT BETRAYAL.. no matter how cleverly and sweetly it is presented!