86. The Principles of How to Treat Offerings to God

(1) The money and goods of God’s house, including all of its property, are offerings to God from His chosen people, and belong to no church or person;

(2) No one has the right to partake of offerings to God except for God and the priest. Any person who steals from them is a Judas, and must be punished;

(3) Offerings donated to God are to be arranged, transferred, and controlled by Him and the man used by the Holy Spirit, and no one may interfere with them or move them at will;

(4) One who causes a loss of offerings through their careless, perfunctory performance of duty, or their failure to act in line with the principles, should offer discretionary restitution, according to the truth principle;

(5) One who grossly misappropriates or steals offerings must be made to pay for what they took; if they refuse to do so, punitive retribution may be implemented.

Relevant Words of God:

The money, material objects, and all property in God’s household are the offerings that should be given by man. These offerings may be enjoyed by none but the priest and God, for the offerings of man are for the enjoyment of God. God only shares these offerings with the priest; no one else is qualified or entitled to enjoy any part of them. All of man’s offerings (including money and material things that can be enjoyed) are given to God, not to man, and so these things should not be enjoyed by man; if man were to enjoy them, then he would be stealing offerings. Anyone who does this is a Judas, for, in addition to being a traitor, Judas also helped himself to what was put in the money bag.

Excerpted from “The Ten Administrative Decrees That Must Be Obeyed by God’s Chosen People in the Age of Kingdom” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

What is an offering? An offering is something a person devotes to God; it belongs to man no longer, but to God. Whatever is devoted to God—be it money or material things, and whatever its value—belongs entirely to God, and is not at man’s disposal, nor is it his to use. How might God’s offerings be conceptualized? Only God may dispose of that which belongs to Him, and, prior to obtaining His approval, none may disturb those things or make any plans for them. There are those who say, “If God isn’t using something, why doesn’t He let us use it? If it were to go bad after a while, wouldn’t that be a shame?” No, not even then; this is a principle. Offerings are things that belong to God, not to man; big or small, and whether or not they are valuable, once man has devoted them to God, their essence has changed, regardless of whether God wants them. Once a thing has become an offering, it is among the possessions of the Creator and at His disposal. What does one’s view of offerings involve? It involves one’s attitude toward God. If a person’s attitude toward God is one of impertinence and disdain, and of insouciance, then that person’s attitude toward all the things God owns will certainly be likewise. There are some who say, “Some offerings have no one looking after them. Doesn’t that mean they belong to whoever is in possession of them? Whether or not anyone knows it, it’s ‘finders, keepers’; whoever gets his hands on those things is their owner.” What do you think of that view? Quite clearly, it is incorrect. What is God’s attitude toward offerings? No matter what is offered, and whether or not He accepts it, once something has been designated as an offering, any person with further designs on it may wind up “stepping on a landmine.” What does this mean? (It means offending God’s disposition.) You all share this concept. Thus, what does this matter tell people? It tells them that God’s disposition brooks no offenses by humans, and that they are not to fiddle with His things. God’s offerings, for instance—if a person were to take them as his own, or to waste and squander them, then he would be liable to offend God’s disposition and be punished. Nevertheless, God’s fury has its principles; it is not as people imagine it, with God lashing out at anyone who makes a mistake. People must treat God’s offerings with caution, and the only way to be sure not to offend God’s disposition is to have reverence for Him.

Excerpted from “Only by Resolving One’s Notions Can One Enter the Right Track of Believing in God (3)” in Records of Talks of Christ of the Last Days

On the subject of offerings, the Bible records that in earliest times, God asked man to give the tithe to God as an offering. Whether the amount was great or small, and regardless of what exactly the offering was—be it money or physical items—as long as it was one tenth of people’s income, it was bona fide offering. This was what God asked of man, it was what believers in God were supposed to offer to God. This one tenth tithe is one kind of offering. Some people ask, “Can the one tenth only be money?” Not necessarily. For example, if a person harvests ten acres of grain, then regardless of the yield, one acre’s worth of this grain should ultimately be given to God; this one tenth is the tithe. Thus, the “one tenth” does not just refer to money—it does not just mean that when one earns a thousand dollars, they must give God a hundred, but to people’s income, which covers much more—material things, financial assets. This is all mentioned in the Bible. Of course, the house of God is not as strict as the Bible in requiring that people give one-tenth of their income; here I am merely fellowshiping and raising awareness of the concept and definition of the “one tenth” so that people are aware that the one tenth tithe is one kind of offering. The intention is not to call upon people to donate one tenth; donations should be based on people’s personal interpretation and inclination, and the house of God does not ask for anything more.

Another kind of offering are the things that people give to God. Broadly speaking, this of course includes the one tenth tithe; specifically, in addition to the one tenth tithe, anything that people give to God also falls into the category of an “offering.” Offerings to God include many things, for example food, equipment, daily necessities, health supplements, as well as the sheep that were offered on the altar in the Old Testament. These are all offerings. It depends on the intent of the offerer; if the offerer says this thing is offered to God, then regardless of whether it is given directly to God or placed in the custody of the house of God, it falls into the category of an offering, and may not be touched by people. … The objects that are given to God cover a broad category of things, for people live in a material world, and in addition to money, gold, silver, and jewelry, there is much that they consider good, and valuable. There are people who, when they think of God, when there is born in them the true love of God, or they long for God in their hearts, gladly give that which they consider precious and valuable to God. When these things are given to God, they are categorized as offerings; they become offerings. At the same time as becoming offerings, they are now handled by God; people can’t touch them, they are not under the control of people, they do not belong to people. Once you have offered it to God, this thing belongs to God, not you; it is no longer any of your concern. Regardless of how it is handled or treated by God, it is no longer connected to man. Objects given to God are also a kind of offering. Some people ask, “Can only money and precious metals and jewelry be offerings? Say someone gave God a pair of socks or shoes, or even some insoles or a handkerchief—do they count as offerings?” According to the definition above, no matter how great or small, how precious or cheap, an object is, as long as it is given to God—even if it is a pen or a piece of paper—it is an offering.

There is another kind of offering which are objects given to the house of God or churches, and they also fall into the category of offerings. What do such objects include? Say, for example, someone bought a car, and after driving it for a while felt it had gotten a little old, so bought another one, and gave the old one to the house of God, in order that the house of God could use it in its work; the car now belonged to God’s house. It is right that things that belong to the house of God should be classed as offerings. Of course, not just equipment is given to the churches and the house of God, but other things, too; this category is fairly large. Some people say, “The one tenth tithe is a kind of offering, as are the money and objects given to God; people have no objection to these being classed as offerings, there’s nothing questionable about this. But why do the things given to the churches and the house of God also count as offerings? That doesn’t make much sense.” What say you, does it make sense for them to be classed as offerings? (Yes.) And why do you say that? (It is only because of God that there are churches, and so what is given to the churches are also offerings to God.) Well said. The churches and the house of God are of God; it is only because there is a God that there is the house of God and the churches; it is only because there are the churches that there is somewhere for the brothers and sisters to assemble and live; and it is only because there is the house of God that all of the brothers and sisters’ problems have somewhere to be solved, and the brothers and sisters have a true home—all of this only exists on the foundation of God’s existence. People don’t just give to the churches and to the house of God because the people in the churches believe in God and are of the house of God—that is not the right reason. It is because of God that people donate to the churches and to the house of God. And what is the subtext? Who would casually give things to the church if not because of God? Without God, the churches would not exist. When people have things that they don’t use or that are surplus to requirements, they could throw them away or put them in storage. Some items could be sold, too. These are all ways of dealing with them, right? So why don’t they deal with them thus—why give them to the churches? Is it not because of God? (Yes.) It is because there is a God that people give to the churches, and so anything that is given to the churches or the house of God should be classed as an offering. Some people say, “I give this thing of mine to the church.” Giving to the churches is equivalent to giving to God, and the churches and the house of God have full authority over the handling of such things. When you give it to the church, the object loses any connection to you; the house of God and the churches will properly distribute, use, and handle these objects according to principles defined by the house of God. And where do these principles come from? From God. Basically, the principle for the use of these objects is that they should be used for the sake of God’s management plan, and for the sake of spreading the work of God. They are not for the exclusive use of any individual, much less any group, but relate to the work of spreading the gospel and the various work of the house of God. So no one has a special right to use these things; the only principle and basis for their use and distribution is according to the principles required by the house of God, which is reasonable and proper.

Excerpted from “Identifying False Leaders (12)” in Records of Talks of Christ of the Last Days

Once they understand the definition and concept of offerings, leaders and workers should have a clear grasp of the offerings that people donate; they should stay on top of them, and should first find someone trustworthy and of acceptable humanity to serve as a custodian. This person may be of average caliber and incapable of being a leader or worker, but they are dependable, and will not misappropriate anything; while the offerings are in their hands, they will not be lost or mixed up. There are rules for this work in the work arrangements: Only people who are trustworthy and of acceptable humanity should be found. Those who are of poor humanity covet nice things as soon as they see them, they are obsessed with having them for their own use, they constantly adopt underhand tactics, having theft in mind, and constantly try to create a false image, looking for the chance to take these things for themselves. Such people must not be used. At the very least, when things or money are handed over to them for safekeeping, people must be conscientious and painstaking in their care of them, with a heart that fears God; they must not expropriate things, or lend them to anyone. In sum, you can rest easy after leaving the offerings in their hands; not a cent will go missing, not a single thing will be misplaced. This is the kind of person that should be found. In addition, the house of God has a rule that not just one of such people should be found, but preferably two or three, so that there are people for recordkeeping and custodianship of offerings. Once people have been found, offerings must be classified, with whoever is suitable for a certain type of item given custodianship, and the items and financial assets systematically recorded, with records and accounts for how many things each person is looking after. And once suitable people have been found to categorize and record offerings, is that the end? (No.) So what should be done next? After a period of time, leaders and workers should observe incomings and outgoings, how much is going out and coming in, whether the books are balancing, whether the person keeping records is doing so accurately, whether they are missing anything out, whether the total balances with incomings and outgoings, and so on—all work in the area of finance and accounting has to be done scrupulously. If leaders and workers are not overly proficient in such work, someone with professional experience should be arranged to do this, then leaders and workers should regularly check up on things and receive reports. In sum, whether or not you understand financial and accounting issues or coordination work, you cannot wash your hands of this work or turn a blind eye to it and simply not get involved; instead, you must regularly check up on it, asking about reconciling accounts, whether they balance, then randomly selecting the incomings and outgoings for items of expenditure, looking at spending for this period, whether there has been any waste, whether the accounts can be balanced, how well the books are being kept. Whether by looking at the books or through oral reports, leaders and workers should stay on top of all of this.

Excerpted from “Identifying False Leaders (12)” in Records of Talks of Christ of the Last Days

The most direct manifestation of a person’s attitude toward God is their attitude toward offerings. Whatever your attitude toward offerings, that is your attitude toward God. If you treat offerings like you treat your own bank account, being meticulous, painstaking, rigorous, responsible, and diligent, then you have a pretty good attitude toward God. If you treat offerings like a public asset, like produce in a vegetable market, favoring the things that you want, that you wish to own, and disregarding whatever doesn’t belong to you, not caring where it is placed or heaped, heedless of who takes it, pretending not to see—as if it has nothing to do with you—when it falls on the ground and someone steps on it, then you’re trouble. When you have this kind of attitude toward offerings, are you someone with a sense of responsibility? Can people like this perform their duty properly? It’s not hard to imagine what your humanity is like. In sum, in addition to safekeeping, leaders and workers’ chief responsibility when it comes to this work and the treatment of offerings is follow-up work, which is even more important. While safekeeping, you must audit the books, and track, look into, and check up on expenditure, keeping a close eye on it, putting a stop to unreasonable expenditure before it leads to squandering or waste, holding people to account when waste and squandering do occur, and even issuing warnings and demanding compensation. If you can’t even do this work properly, then go ahead and step down—you shouldn’t be in the role of leader, because you can’t do this work. … If you can’t even do such simple work as this, then as a leader, as a keeper of the house of God, what can you do? All about, offerings are wasted and squandered—but you, a leader, feel nothing, it doesn’t pain you in the slightest. Is God in your heart? Does God have a place in your heart? This is questionable. You say you have a great love of God, that you fear God, but you feel nothing when people squander and waste God’s offerings, it doesn’t pain you in the slightest—so is your love and fear of God not questionable? Even your faith is questionable, to say nothing of your love and fear of God, which are simply baseless, unsupported. Is this work the responsibility that should be fulfilled by leaders and workers? (Yes.) Doing this job well is the responsibility of leaders and workers—it is the obligatory responsibility of leaders and workers.

Excerpted from “Identifying False Leaders (12)” in Records of Talks of Christ of the Last Days

Everything that involves the arbitrary use of sacrifices, the improper consumption and expenditure of sacrifices, invariably concerns administrative decrees, and is of the nature of an offense against them. There are some who, in managing church property, may say: “The property of the church is just sitting there. Nowadays, banks have all kinds of investment programs, such as high-interest loans, stocks, and funds, all giving a good rate of interest. If we take this money from the church and invest it, we could earn a bit of interest. Wouldn’t this bring benefit to God’s house?” Without discussing it, without getting the agreement of anyone from the church, they take it upon themselves to lend out the money. What is the purpose of doing that? To put it nicely, this is earning some interest for God’s house, taking thought for God’s house; but in actual fact, they are harboring a selfish motive. They want to lend the money without anyone knowing and then, in the end, return the principal amount to God’s house while keeping the interest for themselves. Wouldn’t this be a case of harboring a disloyal intention? This is called lending out money. Can lending out money be considered the proper use of sacrifices? (No, it cannot.) There are others who say: “God loves mankind, God’s house is warm. Sometimes, when our brothers and sisters are short of money, can’t we lend God’s offerings to them?” Some people will then take it upon themselves to make a decision, and there may even be antichrists who appeal to and incite the brothers and sisters, saying: “God loves mankind, God gives life, gives everything to man, so it wouldn’t be a big deal to lend some money, would it? Lending money to our brothers and sisters to tide them over in times of urgent need, to help them through the difficulties in their lives, isn’t that God’s will? If God loves mankind, how can people not love each other? Go on, lend them some money!” The great majority of ignorant people, hearing this, will say: “Sure, if you say so. In any case, the money came from everyone in the first place, so let’s just call this a case of all for one.” And so, with one person mouthing fine words on the one hand and a bunch of bootlickers sucking up to him on the other, out the money goes in the end. Now can you honestly say this money counts as having been offered up to God? If it does count, then the money already belongs to God and has now been sanctified, and so it would only be proper to use it according to the principles that God has put in place. If you say that it doesn’t count, if the money that you offer doesn’t count, then what is it that you have offered? Is it a prank? Are you playing a joke on God and deceiving Him? Having put the things that you want to sacrifice upon the altar, you start to begrudge them, thinking: There they are and God isn’t even using them, and it looks like He doesn’t have a use for them after all. But now you have a need for them, and so you take them and use them yourself. Or maybe you offered up too much and, regretting it afterward, you took some of it back. Or maybe you weren’t thinking clearly when you made the offering, and now you’ve discovered a use for it, so you are taking it back. What kind of behavior is that? This money and these things: once a person has offered them up to God, it is the same as presenting them on the altar, and things that have been presented on the altar are offerings. Be it no more than a stone, or a grain of sand, a steamed bun, or a cup of water, as long as you have placed it on the altar, this object belongs to God, not to man, and no human is to touch it anymore, whether or not you covet it for yourself or think you have a legitimate use for it; no human has a right to it anymore. There are some who say: “Doesn’t God love mankind? What of it if He lets mankind have a share? Right now, You’re not thirsty and You don’t need water, but I’m thirsty, so why can’t I have a drink?” But then you’ve got to see whether or not God is in agreement. If God agrees, this proves that He has given you the right and that you have the right to make use of it; but if God doesn’t agree, then you have no right to use it. In a situation where you do not have the right, where God has not given you the right, using something that belongs to God would be violating a taboo, which is what God abominates most of all.

People are always saying that God doesn’t tolerate offenses from man, but they have never understood what God’s disposition is really like, and which of the things they do is most likely to offend Him. In the matter of God’s sacrifices, a lot of people have them constantly in mind, wanting to use them or distribute them as they please, to make use of them according to their own will, to possess or even to squander them; but I tell you, you’re finished, you deserve death! Such is the disposition of God. These are God’s things, which He does not allow anyone to touch. Such is the dignity of God. There is only one situation in which people are given the right by God to use them, and that is their proper use according to church regulations and the principles governing their usage. Staying within these limits is acceptable to God, but straying outside these limits would be an offense against God’s disposition, against the administrative decrees. It is as strict as that, leaving no room for negotiation, and there is no alternative way. Therefore, those who do such things as squander, misappropriate or lend offerings are regarded as antichrists in the eyes of God. Why are they treated with such severity as to be deemed antichrists? If one who believes in God can go so far as to dare to touch, or use, or squander at will objects that belong to God and that have been sanctified, then such a person is God’s enemy. Only God’s enemies would hold such an attitude toward His objects; no ordinary corrupt person would do this, not even an animal would do this, only God’s enemies, Satan, and the great red dragon, would do this. Is this putting it too strongly? No, this is principle! Such is the dignity of God!

Excerpted from “They Control Church Finances As Well As Controlling People’s Hearts” in Exposing Antichrists

When someone offers an object to God, you must not get any ideas into your head. Whatever the object may be, whether or not it is valuable, whether you have a use for it or not, whether it is precious or not—you must not get any ideas about it. Go out and earn money if you’ve got the ability—earn as much as you like, no one will hinder you, but you absolutely must not get any ideas about the object being sacrificed to God. This much vigilance is something you should have; this much sense is something you should have. The above is one tenet. Another tenet is that whosoever engages in squandering, misappropriation, lending out, defrauding, and theft of sacrifices is looked upon as a person like Judas. People who have carried out these sorts of acts and practices have already offended against God’s disposition, and God will not save them, and you must not entertain any hopes of it being otherwise. I have put it like this and God will bring these things to pass. This is foreordained, and there is no room for negotiation. Some people will say: “There is a background to my misappropriation: I was young and ignorant when I was profligate with money, but I didn’t embezzle too much, just ten or twenty, thirty or fifty.” But it’s not about how much; the fact is that when you do these things, the object of your actions is God, you have touched God’s things, and it is wrong of you to have touched them. God’s things are not common property, they do not belong to everyone, they do not belong to the church, they do not belong to God’s house: They belong to God, and you must not get these distinctions mixed up. God doesn’t consider it to be, nor has He told you, that: “My things, My sacrifices are to be given into the possession of the church, to be distributed by the church. They are the collective property of the brothers and sisters of the church, and whoever wants to use them just needs to present a request and make a record.” God did not say this. So, what did God say? Something sacrificed to God is an object belonging to God, and once this object has been presented on the altar, it belongs to God once and for all, and henceforth no human has the right to make unauthorized use of it. Your calculations, appropriations, cheating, stealing, lending, and squandering—all these actions are condemned as offenses against God’s disposition, as the actions of the antichrists, and are tantamount to blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, for which God will never forgive you. Such is the dignity of God, and mankind must not fail to respect it. Things that you have got from robbing banks, plunder, or theft can get you sentenced to one or two years or three or five years, and once you have served your time, you will no longer be guilty of any crime. But when you take and use God’s things, God’s sacrifices, this is a sin that in God’s eyes is permanent, a sin that cannot be forgiven.

Excerpted from “They Control Church Finances As Well As Controlling People’s Hearts” in Exposing Antichrists

You stinking little worms steal offerings from the altar of Me, Jehovah; in doing so, can you rescue your ruined, failed reputation and become the chosen people of Israel? You are shameless wretches! Those sacrifices on the altar were offered up to Me by people, as an expression of benevolent feelings from those who revere Me. They are for My control and for My use, so how can you possibly rob Me of the little turtledoves people have given Me? Do you not fear becoming a Judas? Are you not afraid that your land might become a field of blood? You shameless thing! Do you think that the turtledoves offered up by people are to nourish the belly of you maggot? What I have given you is what I am content and willing to give you; what I have not given you is at My disposal. You may not simply steal My offerings. The One who works is Me, Jehovah—the Lord of creation—and people offer sacrifices because of Me. Do you think this is recompense for all the running about you do? You really are shameless! Who do you run about for? Is it not for yourself? Why do you steal My sacrifices? Why do you steal money from My money bag? Are you not the son of Judas Iscariot? The sacrifices to Me, Jehovah, are to be enjoyed by priests. Are you a priest? You dare to smugly eat My sacrifices, and even lay them out on the table; you are worth nothing! You worthless wretch! My fire, the fire of Jehovah, will incinerate you!

Excerpted from “When Falling Leaves Return to Their Roots, You Will Regret All the Evil You Have Done” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

I have worked and spoken in this way among you, I have expended so much energy and effort, yet when have you ever listened to what I plainly tell you? Where have you bowed down to Me, the Almighty? Why do you treat Me like this? Why does everything you say and do provoke My anger? Why are your hearts so hard? Have I ever struck you down? Why do you do nothing but make Me sorrowful and anxious? Are you waiting for the day of wrath of Me, Jehovah, to come upon you? Are you waiting for Me to send forth the anger provoked by your disobedience? Is everything I do not for you? Yet always have you treated Me, Jehovah, in this way: stealing My sacrifices, taking the offerings of My altar home to the wolf’s lair to feed the cubs and the cubs of the cubs; people fight against each other, facing one another with angry glares and swords and spears, tossing the words of Me, the Almighty, into the latrine to become as filthy as excrement. Where is your integrity? Your humanity has become beastliness! Your hearts have long since turned to stone. Do you not know that the time when My day of wrath arrives will be the time when I judge the evil you commit against Me, the Almighty, today? Do you think that by fooling Me in this way, by casting My words into the mire and not listening to them—do you think that by acting like this behind My back you can escape My wrathful gaze? Do you not know that you were already seen by the eyes of Me, Jehovah, when you stole My sacrifices and coveted My possessions? Do you not know that when you stole My sacrifices, you did so before the altar to which sacrifices are offered? How could you believe yourselves clever enough to deceive Me in this way? How could My wrath depart from your heinous sins? How could My raging fury pass over your evil doings? The evil that you commit today does not open a way out for you, but stores up chastisement for your tomorrow; it provokes the chastisement of Me, the Almighty, toward you.

Excerpted from “No One Who Is of the Flesh Can Escape the Day of Wrath” in The Word Appears in the Flesh

Sermon and Fellowship Excerpts for Reference:

The Principles of the Supervision of Offerings to the House of God

All offerings given by believers to God are the exclusive property of God and do not belong to any church or individual. Certain funds and property may be provided for use in the work of the churches, but they still belong to the house of God, and must be allocated centrally by God’s house; they can be used by anybody who needs them, but they must not be misused. Due to the extent of mankind’s corruption, many people are in love with money and blind to anything but their own interests. As such, it is vital for the house of God to establish a strict system for the supervision of offerings. To this end, God’s house expressly stipulates that each church must select three suitable individuals to supervise church offerings. Leaders, workers, and God’s chosen people all reserve the right to supervise church offerings. Investigating and handling any issues with offerings is the responsibility of the church leaders. Cooperation in said investigations should be provided by God’s chosen people. They must not turn a blind eye to such matters, and will be considered equally guilty if they do so. Below are specific details of the principles for the supervision of church offerings:

1. Each church must set up an offerings box. Regardless of the timing or the amount, offerings are not subject to any stipulations and are made freely. Three individuals must be selected to assume joint responsibility for the safekeeping of offerings. Withdrawal and use of funds must be made in strict accordance with accounting rules, and the selected three individuals must ensure the clarity of accounts and regularly report to the church’s leaders.

2. In each church, offerings must be supervised by three people: one to act as cashier, and two to carry out bookkeeping. The management of offerings and accounts must not be carried out by one person alone.

3. If someone is discovered to be unsuitable for safeguarding offerings, they must be promptly replaced. Where the appointment of unsuitable persons leads to the loss of church offerings, the church leaders must be held accountable.

4. Church finances must be managed and used in strict accordance with accounting rules. When church leaders entrust offerings to a custodian, a receipt in triplicate must be created for the actual amount as proof that the funds have been entrusted to the custodian. Custodians must not merely write a chit, but must produce a proof of receipt of funds for the payer. The movement or transferal of offerings by leaders at any level must be witnessed by two or three leaders and workers and accompanied by written evidence, to prevent theft by false leaders and antichrists. Where church work requires money, funds must be withdrawn by two or three people; they must not be withdrawn by one person alone. If the custodian is not acquainted with at least one of the withdrawees, the withdrawal must be blocked and cannot be released. On every occasion that funds are withdrawn, each withdrawee must personally write a guarantee that includes the date of withdrawal, monetary amount, intended use, and the withdrawee’s signature. A triplicate receipt must also be created as an accounting record, with one copy going to each person involved.

5. All income and expenditure of church offerings must be recorded in duplicate, with a copy given each to the two bookkeepers. All accounts handled by bookkeepers must be clearly kept and must be checked on a spontaneous or monthly basis by leaders, who should verify that income and expenditure of offerings are handled according to the principles, so that issues can be promptly identified and addressed. When leaders and workers are replaced, or reassigned due to the exigencies of work, accounts must be gone through clearly during the handover to prevent people with ulterior motives from having the opportunity to embezzle or misappropriate church offerings.

6. Offerings given by God’s chosen people must be placed in the offerings box. In the absence of an offerings box, the offering must be personally handed to the church’s two leaders. Offerings must not be given to one leader alone. No one leader or worker alone is permitted to receive an offering from a brother or sister; a minimum of two people is required. Upon receipt of the offering, the leaders and workers must produce a triplicate proof of receipt recording the monetary amount written in both numbers and letters, the date of receipt, and spiritual names of the offering’s handlers. The handlers each keep one copy. Moreover, the leaders and workers must provide the brother or sister who made the offering with a slip proving that the offering has been given to the house of God.

7. All offerings kept by a church to be handed over to the upper level must be jointly handled by two people. The offering must not be taken by one person alone. Specially assigned personnel must deliver the offering to the designated location and should not pass through or linger at potentially dangerous places. People who are avaricious, money-grubbing, and who are apt to take unfair advantage, or whose family owe money, must not be allowed to collect or send offerings or handle any matters for the house of God involving the expenditure of offerings (such as procurement for the church, etc.).

8. All who collect and send offerings, or have cause to use offerings, must truthfully write clear itemized accounts and an expenditure list and promptly verify the accounts. Anyone who is unwilling to voluntarily verify the accounts should be considered suspicious. Anyone who is discovered to have falsified accounts is to be dealt with strictly and must be kept away from offerings thereafter. In serious cases, they should be purged or expelled.

9. The custodians of offerings must abide by the principles and be completely faithful to God in the matter of offerings. If leaders are discovered to have deviated from the principles when withdrawing funds, custodians must request that they follow the principles. If the leaders ignore this advice and insist on withdrawing offerings, custodians have the right to refuse to process the withdrawal until they have asked for verification from the upper level. If it is discovered that leaders and workers deviated from the principles in withdrawing funds and the custodians did not refuse to process the withdrawal—if they obeyed unquestioningly, and blindly handed over the money—this is a serious contravention of the principles and total abnegation of responsibility. In nature, such custodians are no different from Judas, and they must be replaced or purged. If custodians do not follow the principles and allow Satan the devil to take advantage of them, leading to the loss of church offerings, they must compensate said loss unconditionally; if they refuse to make recompense, they can be purged or expelled.

Excerpted from Work Arrangements

The chosen people’s offerings to God are the exclusive property of God; they do not belong to any individual or church and they are all allocated to and used by the house of God. Any misappropriation, lending, or embezzlement of offerings is considered theft. God’s disposition brooks no offense. All who steal offerings are Judases, they are grievous sinners who must be punished by God. Such people are bound to be eliminated. They must be punished by the house of God and their misdeeds put on record and made public to all. Protecting God’s offerings is of primary importance. Without well-formulated principles for the supervision of funds and the punishment of wrongdoing, Satan the devil will inevitably exploit loopholes. To this end, the house of God must adopt strict measures toward those who steal, embezzle, or cause loss to offerings. Specific methods for handling such matters are as follows:

1. For all who steal or embezzle offerings to God, if the amount involved is small, they show repentance, and promptly provide reimbursement, they will be given a single demerit. Thereafter, however, they will only be permitted to lead the church life, and are not permitted to act as leaders or workers or to undertake important commissions.

2. For all who steal and embezzle offerings to God, show no repentance, and refuse to provide reimbursement, the church must take all steps to recoup the offerings, after which the individuals concerned must be expelled from the church.

3. Where offerings are damaged or lost by a custodian, if the amount is small and the person shows repentance, they are to be given a single demerit. If the amount is large, and they show no repentance, then they are to be expelled from the church. However, regardless of whether the amount of offerings damaged or lost is great or small, it must be reimbursed within a limited time period. Should the person refuse to reimburse the amount, the church must adopt any and all measures to recover it.

4. If offerings are lost due to natural or man-made disasters, such as fire, theft, or other unforeseeable events, demerit and reimbursement will only be waived if there are multiple people to prove that the incident was unavoidable. Should the custodian fail to take subjective preventive measures into account and fails to properly store and keep offerings, and a fire or theft etc. occurs, then such a loss is caused by irresponsibility, and the amount lost must be reimbursed in full. The custodian will also be issued a demerit and prohibited from safeguarding offerings in the future.

5. If the selection of custodians is not handled according to principle and leads to the embezzlement or loss of offerings, the leaders at that level must be held accountable. At the very least, said leaders are to be issued a demerit; if the offerings cannot be recovered, the leaders are to reimburse half the amount. This is fair and reasonable. Leaders are not detached from custodians’ mishandling of offerings; the leaders must be held accountable. If the leaders wholly refuse to accept responsibility, they must be replaced. In serious cases, where a large amount of offerings has been lost, they must repay the amount in full and be expelled.

6. If any leader is remiss or reckless in their supervision of offerings, or they use offerings to conduct transactions and entrust them to unreliable individuals, then they must be held accountable, their positions as leaders must be annulled, and their eligibility to stand as a candidate for election removed. They must repay any losses in full, and in serious cases they must be expelled from the church.

7. If, upon discovering a risk to church offerings, leaders, deacons, or custodians do not take timely action, and significant economic loss is caused to the house of God as a result, the persons involved must be held accountable and said losses reimbursed in full. Such false leaders, false workers, and other such people who betray God must be replaced or expelled.

8. All leaders, workers, and custodians who supervise offerings must be faithful in their duties and loyal to God. Under no circumstances must they embezzle offerings, sell out God’s offerings, or use them to conduct transactions. Anyone who sells out God’s offerings is as guilty as Judas, and shall be cursed. They must also be expelled from the church.

Above are the eight principles for dealing with incidents involving church offerings. They must be strictly followed and implemented by leaders and workers at all levels. No matter who they are, anyone who causes a serious incident involving church offerings must be severely dealt with.

Excerpted from Work Arrangements

Previous: 85. The Principles of Offering Donations and Alms

Next: 87. The Principles of Cooperating With the Work of Leaders

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