Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Rev. Zwonitzer's Continuing Book Review of The Best is Yet to Come: Chapter 8

This is the eighth post in the series of Pastor Rodney E. Zwonitzer's book review of Pastor John Kieschnick's book The Best is Yet to Come: 7 Doors of Spiritual Growth.

Review of Chapter 8—Giving: The Door of Authentic Faith

Right out of the chute, are you startled by the subtitle: Door of Authentic Faith? Giving?

He begins by talking about motivation for giving: joy! This joy is experienced by guess who? Authentic believers! “People who give have an authentic faith, and those who are learning to give are growing in their authenticity.” (page 182) So let me pose this scenario: a church member who is a hypocrite gives a sizeable amount in his offering envelopes over the years. So by doing so he has authentic faith? I think I know what he’s trying to achieve with such a beginning, but to make such a statement just doesn’t square with Scripture. At the least, he has not again chosen his words carefully. If so, he would have made some clarifications so that no false interpretations and applications could have been deduced.

Giving is nothing but response to God’s grace, he emphasizes. God owns it all, on loan to us as stewards/managers, so it is not about how much we give back to Him, but how much we keep for ourselves. Although he emphasizes the principle of sowing and reaping, he also correctly admonishes the turning of this into “the health and wealth” “God as vending machine” approach. He also purports the tithe in NT is minimum, not a maximum. He offers great and good advice about debt, praying about stewardship, increase one’s percentage every year, etc.

He relates that his congregation “decided to move from a Church Council structure to a Board of Directors model.” (page 198) Another indicator of CGM follower here.

This is easily the chapter where I can agree with the author the most. God does want us to excel in the grace of giving.

Peace of the Lord be with you!

Pastor Rod Zwonitzer

Click here to continue to the next part of Pastor Zwonitzer's review

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Get out your checkbooks." Jerry Kieschnick

How much does the Synod Pres get paid again?

How much does a missionary get paid again? Especially after he is pulled from the field?

Hmmm. Amazing. Or should I say ablazing.