Before Jesus left the world, he gave one important instruction to his disciples in Mark 16:15:
“Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone”
Before that time, he had been teaching his disciples many things – and then the time came for him to send them out to put into practice what he had taught them. Like any good professor, who will send his students out for practical work, he gave them instructions again on how to operate on the field in Matthew 10:6-8:
Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.
The word of God must be spread across all nations and tribes – that is the work believers have been called to do.
I heave and sigh as I write this note because of the great disservice being perpetrated in the name of preaching the good news in many supposed Christian ministries today. I ask myself, are most ministers peddlers or shepherds? Simply put, a peddler is a person who sells (often moving from place to place). And as I begin to explore the personal websites of certain ministers, the patterns are the same.
It starts with a gigantic photo of the minister often looking charismatic and professional. Then, the minister introduces himself or herself as a coach, teacher, mentor, and motivational speaker. A link to book one-on-one sessions (at a fee) is also present. Finally, a very big icon to partner with the organization through financial support is often on the first page. In short, the ministry appears to be a paid service for believers or non-believers to get their lives enriched.
At the heart of such ministries is the spirit of mammon! Every ministry that emphasizes a focus on getting your physical needs met always is a mammonish one. And if it is tied to you giving a seed or an offering at the end of such services, it is a red flag. Christians, we need to wake up and watch the ministries we subscribe our spirits and souls to.
Indeed, life can be tough, and our present desire might be to see our earthly needs (food, wealth, clothing, good work, status, health, marriage, etc.) met. However, the Bible admonishes us to seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness, and our needs will be met.
Our needs are not met by giving to the Sheep-peddlers, who promise us life transformations for a small fee. Our needs are not met by rigorous early morning prayers commanding and confessing riches, wealth, and good luck to come to us. Our needs are not met by sowing seeds to the ministries of the Sheep-peddlers who are already wealthy.
Our needs are met by the Grace and Providence of God. Would you humbly ask for more grace from the Father daily?