Are special contributions scriptural?


Concerning collections: is it a good practice supported by Scripture to set aside "Special Giving Days" for specific purposes on the first day of the week in addition to the regular collection? This practice seems to contradict what a treasury is for in the work of the church. I respect your knowledge and work in the Word in that you can shed some more light or knowledge on this subject.


"Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come" (I Corinthians 16:1-2).

The typical purpose of multiple, special collections is to get more funds than would normally be collected. A person gives his usual amount to the general collection (which always comes first so that it is not compromised by the special collections). Then a variety of special collections are taken up, each with its own plea and the peer pressure to give because others are also giving. This method changes the nature of giving from a voluntary, pre-planned gift to an impulsive decision based on pressure. "So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver" (II Corinthians 9:7).

Using multiple collections also changes the decision-making process. Instead of a single treasury where the church, as a whole, decides how to accomplish the work God has laid out for the church, multiple collections have each individual deciding what activities will get funding. Thus popular activities become easier to fund rather than considering what is needful to accomplish.

This doesn't mean that a church cannot announce a desire to do a special task, such as the churches in Galatia, Macedonia, and Achaia wanting to help the needy saints in Judea, so that members might give additionally if they are able toward that purpose. Such can still be done with a single collection of what each member has decided in advance to give.

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