"Preachers of L.A.", is a reality show that airs on the Oxygen network and it is getting mixed reviews.The show follows the lives of six well-known mega-preachers and it has become a show that is both entertaining as well as controversial.
Before the public sits down to watch this reality series, they should know that there is a difference between these L.A. preachers (A.K.A) mega-preachers and main-stream preachers.
The first distinction is money. Mega-preachers certainly make more money, lots more money. Which makes since, after all, they have more tithers, more money coming in and more resources.
From a Christian standpoint, there is nothing wrong with being prosperous, but 1 Timothy 6:17-19, gives those that are wealthy a few guidelines to follow. It states, "Charge them that are rich in this world, that they not be high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; that they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they many lay hold on eternal life."
Now most Christians will tell you that God doesn't care how much we make, so why should man? It is safe to say that God doesn't have anything against those that are rich; in fact, God Himself blessed King Solomon with both riches and wisdom.
But, keep in mind that the salaries that these L.A. preachers make, do not reflect what the average preacher in America brings home. And, many American's are saying that, Preachers of L.A. are making a bad name for the average hard working pastor.
The average American preacher works hard for their money and they have many expenses just like everyone else. Operating a church costs money. There is the utility bill, rent or mortgage to pay, insurance and operating expenses. On top of it all, preachers have their own expenses. Yes, even preachers have living expenses. They work hard for their monies and they are entitled to spend what they make in whatever way they please.
So, how do preachers get paid? Christians believe that it is biblical to give their tithes and offerings to the church and it is up to the preachers and their congregation to use those funds wisely. A portion of what a church brings in goes not only towards the preachers salary, but to anyone else who is on the payroll. Churches also fund community outreaches, ecumenical programs and other related ministries.
But, it is important to note that most churches in the United States have fewer than 100 in attendance, and since preachers are paid based upon the tithes and offerings that come into the church, it is fair to say that most preachers are not in it for the money.
Now, mega-preachers on the other hand bring in more money simply because their churches are larger. As far as the L.A. preachers are concerned, many of them had careers prior to preaching that earned them their notoriety. They make additional money by writing books, songs and making special appearances. Mega-preachers usually have a strong business sense and those that do not, can wind up in a lot of trouble.
The fact is, God doesn't care how much a person makes, but He does care about what he spends it on. Christians are called to be good stewards of their money, so how preachers spend their money is an issue. Money should never come before God.
For Christians, money is not so much an issue as long as the church is not cheating it's congregation and is giving freely to the poor and to missions. A good preacher will see that the monies go towards projects that can help, aid, educate and minister to the masses. Matthew 6:21, "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
It is important to note that God does hold preachers accountable for the money that is given to the church. 1 Tim. 6:17-18 "Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share."
In fact, caution goes out to preachers. The day that a pastor lets their eyes move beyond the importance of souls, is the day they've lost their purpose. Their focus should be on the people inside the church-the flock the Lord has sovereignly drawn together and entrusted into the care of them.
To sum it up, God doesn't care how much a person makes, however after watching, "L.A. Preachers", you might find that they are a bit over the top with their lavish lifestyles. These L.A. preachers lead lives closer to that of a pop star, than that of a regular preacher.
But, if their flashy rings and one of kind sports cars are leading people to Christ than that's great, but if not, then they might try trading in the "bling" for something more eternal.
Preachers are indeed human and sometimes the spotlight exposes the flaws. Man looks and judges the outer appearance, while God looks to the heart. If these mega-preachers are in it for all the right reasons then leave them alone, if they are in it for the money, than God will be their judge.
The difference between a mega-preacher and a main-stream preacher is money. The "Preachers of L.A." is guaranteed to be controversial, but it is also guaranteed to be inspiring.