When is His house a den of thieves?

I know there are people who believe it is against Biblical teaching to sell things in the church.  Our son Adam and his friend Danielle are taking orders for cookie trays that they will be baking for Christmas.  They have sold over 100 dozen.  They are raising money for a half marathon they are running in for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital (Adam is doing it in memory of his Aunt Kathy).  And I’m not writing this because I have heard anything negative about the cookies, and I’m not writing this to try to sell more 😉

This came to mind today because someone called to use the church for a baby shower.  We don’t get many calls from non-church members about using the church.  This call happened to be someone who went to church here as a child (not that it matters).  Sometimes people ask if they can bring in their own food.  I tell them if they want to eat, they’d better.  I don’t really say that.  People always ask how much it is to “rent” the room.  Ever since I’ve gone to church in Sistersville and been involved in church leadership, it’s been a pet peeve of mine for churches to charge people for using the social/fellowship hall.  I understand some churches have trouble paying their bills and feel the need to charge for letting people use it – I understand that.  I understand churches that, because they get calls every week and people don’t clean up,  charge a fee.

But being that we don’t get many calls for using the church and being that we don’t need the money, I just can’t see asking people pay to use God’s property.  I believe Jesus would have much more problem with us charging people to use His house than with someone selling cookies in His House to help children who have cancer and birth defects.

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