- Parent Category: FAQs
- Category: Bible Questions and answers about the Church
- Published on Wednesday, 18 November 2009 18:36
Such a ministry is biblical and therefore relevant, since the God-breathed Word fully equips us for every age and circumstance (2 Timothy 3:16, 17). The Spirit separated Barnabas and Saul to a distinct work (Acts 13:1-4). While Paul had reasons for doing secular work in Corinth and Ephesus (Acts 18:3; 20:34; 1 Corinthians 9:12, 15; 2 Corinthians 11:12), the norm is "that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel" (1 Corinthians 9:14). It was therefore appropriate that he and Barnabas would forbear from secular work (verse 6). The gospel was their full-time work. Their’s was an itinerant ministry. Likewise, Timothy and other young men traveled with Paul (Acts 20:4). Although the work had progressed for several decades, there were still itinerant preachers whom Gaius faithfully helped (3 John 5-8). Such men - then and now - consolidate, unify, and further the work of God by moving among existing assemblies and into new work. Timothy and Titus stayed for extended periods in locations that needed assistance. These were temporary assiguments in which they served along with other local men.
The New Testament pattern is that such work received support through the voluntary offerings of assemblies (2 Corinthians 11:8; Philippians 4:14-16) and individual believers (1 Corinthians 16:17). To reduce support to a contractual basis lowers the spiritual character of Christian giving and robs the worker of a singular dependence on His Master for all his needs.