13 “Do you not know that those who minister the holy things eat of the things of the temple, and those who serve at the altar partake of the offerings of the altar? 14Even so the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel.”
Do you not know
The phrase “do you not know” gives further grounds for financially supporting ministers of the gospel.
that those who minister the holy things eat of the things of the temple,
Paul again appeals to the Old Testament for the financial support of ministers. The Old Testament temple priests and Levite workers received material aid for their ministry (Nu 18:8-24). Ten percent was given to the temple itself, ten percent to the priesthood and Levites, and ten percent every third year to the poor.
and those who serve at the altar partake of the offerings of the altar?
It was a common practice that those who served the altar received material benefits for their service. They ate sacrifices offered on the altar (De18:1-8).
Even so the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel.
The Lord Jesus commanded the right of financial support in ministry (Matthew 10:9,10; Luke 10:4,7). “Live from the gospel” means to earn a living (financially) from the gospel.
Ministry comes before the support of the ministry.
There are those in ministry who live like parasites off ministry due to their laziness and lack of discipline. It is not right to support such a person without a ministry. It is not enough for ministers to promise ministry; we must actually have a ministry. Religious rackets abound today, taking advantage of gullible Christians. Many live in luxurious affluence, but no one seems to notice.
Thank you for the commentary on these verses. My pastor is using these verses to con us to give an outrageous amount of money for his anniversary. I asked the Holy Spirit for directions in how much to give.
Dear Dr. Grant,
Under “that those who minister the holy things eat of the things of the temple,” the last sentence says ten percepts instead of ten percent.
Rose, thanks again for calling attention to a typo. It is now fixed.