But by the twenty-third year of King Joash the priests still had not repaired the temple. Therefore King Joash summoned Jehoiada the priest and the other priests and asked them, “Why aren’t you repairing the damage done to the temple? Take no more money from your treasurers, but hand it over for repairing the temple.” The priests agreed that they would not collect any more money from the people and that they would not repair the temple themselves. 2 King 12:6-8
Over the years, I have been involved in debates regarding the accountability of ministries:
Should a ministry be required to provide a full accounting for how their funds are spent?
Some see this as an intrusion and state that a gift is given and the giver should trust that it is being used wisely. Others believe that a full accounting of how all gifts are spent and used should be provided or at the least available. I fall in the second category, but not out of lack of trust.
I believe that as followers of Christ we should be different. We are called to be light in this world. In a world where money is a number one temptation, we should show the world that we can be trusted. We should be willing to conduct our business/ministry in the open light of day.
This story reveals that even in the temple there was a need for better structure. The temptation for the priests to use the money without accountability was too tempting – they willing surrender this role.
In ministry, we need to keep our finances above approach. People should give out of faith, but they should also be able to give with full confidence and trust that their gifts will be best used.
Tomorrow’s Reading – 2 Kings Chapters 14 and 2 Chronicles Chapter 25