Mammon is the Root Prop of Paulinism
Paul & Barnabas' Views
Where did we get the idea of multiple pastors, ministers, and other officers lording over us? Paul.
Paul says "And his gifts were that some should be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors (shepherds, Greek poimenas) and teachers...." (Eph. 411.)
But Jesus said to the contrary: "And I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So there shall be one flock, one shepherd (Greek poimen)." (John 10:16.) Jesus uses the same Greek word for shepherd/pastor as Paul, but the singular while Paul uses the plural. Jesus' point is there should be no more than one. Paul's use of the plural is to convey a contradictory idea that it is perfectly ok to have multiple pastors.
And where do we get the idea that anyone but Jesus can serve as a leader over us too?
"For though you have countless leaders [paidagogous, lit. leaders] in Christ ...." 1Cor.4:15
However, Jesus said: "Neither be called leaders [kathegetai, lit. leaders -- a synonym for paidagogous], for you have one leader, the Christ." Matt.23:10 AMP. (Other translations render this as "master" (KJV) or "director" (YLT).)
And where does the idea come from that these pastors/leaders can not only lord it over us, but also can expect wages from us? Paul again.
In 1 Tim. 5:17, Paul wrote: "The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching." Then Paul uses a verse about not muzzling an ox, and then by nebulous logic Paul reads it to imply that churchgoers have a duty to pay the elders for their service. (1 Tim. 5:18.)
Finally, in 1 Cor. 9:14 (NIV) Paul bluntly says: "the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should receive their living from the gospel."
But Cannot Serve God & Mammon At Same Time.
However, I thought Jesus said to His disciples to lay no cost on anyone they served with preaching or teaching the gospel? "Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give." (Matt. 10:8b.) This is intended to apply to all preaching and ministry works, for the words just before this were:
" And preach as you go, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand.' [8a] Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons."
Jesus likewise warned in Matthew 6:24 what happens if you serve both God and Money at the same time: you will "love less" (miserei) one master in favor of the one you love more --obviously when they conflict. (See Strong's 3404 for miserei in Matt 6:24.) Jesus wasn't requiring everyone to never work for a wage, or otherwise you cannot serve Christ unless poor. We know this because Jesus right after saying not to take money to preach says in the very next verse -- in Matt 10:10 -- that preachers must rely instead upon the Law of Hospitality from Leviticus 25:6 for support. What's that?
You would ask for room and board of someone in a village, and in return do work, and if you did a lot, you could even earn a wage. Jesus paraphrased this law as a "workman is worthy of his wage." If the person there will not listen, Jesus told you to leave their home - proving Jesus saw no risk of being beholden to the host by merely receiving a wage-in-return for LABOR. You were not being paid for TEACHING A PET DOCTRINE from which you gain advantage, whether you realize it or not.
But Jesus sees things very differently if you get a congregation of many people who want to hear a message, and you take a salary or fee to teach them. Now you have Two Masters: God and the paying congregants. This is why Jesus prohibited ever taking money to preach in Matthew 10:7-9. It creates a self-interest to confirm spiritual doctrines favored by the listeners.
The Two Masters warning in Matthew 6:24 explains why this is a problem. You will now be tempted to serve the paying congregants even if you find later that the seminary they supported to train you was designed to perpetuate serious heresies against Jesus' teachings. Once you discover this is going on, you will quickly realize that if you speak the truth to the congregation about what Jesus really says, you will risk elder disapproval, and the loss of mammon (money).
This also explains why Apostle John in 3 John 7 extolled those missionaries who "went out for the Name," but "took nothing from the Gentiles." Had they accepted money from the Gentiles, the temptation would be to please them by skewed doctrine that lowered God's standards to the Gentiles' manner of living.
Jesus' Truth Often Loses to Dependency on Mammon
Thus, what if you as a paid-pastor find out there is a truth from Jesus that is rejected by every present Gentile denomination in Christianity worthy of any regard? Today, every denomination rejects or ignores Jesus' teaching that "a believer in me" has two choices when sinning: you can go to hell whole or heaven maimed by serious cutting off of the temptations causing the sin. (Mark 9:42-47; Matt 5:28-29; 18:6-9.) A Christian's faith in Christ in these passages is not a ticket to heaven, contrary to what most believe. Nor is a Christian eternally secure merely because he had faith, contrary to what most believe. Jesus taught three independent times this "heaven-maimed, hell-whole" doctrine which utterly destroys the universal pet doctrines of modern congregants.
Every pastor knows about these contrary verses to what their congregants enjoy hearing: a reassurance they go to heaven without having to do any good deeds or obey any principles. The pastors know these verses destroy the congregants' pet doctrines. How could they not know?
Luther who first advanced these pet theories in 1517 realized 19 years later the problem they posed. Luther a few years before he died set course to reverse the narrowness of the 'faith alone' doctrine because of the opposing force of these verses and a slew of other passages from Jesus. He with Melancthon and Bucer -- the three early leaders of the Lutheran church -- beginning in 1536 replaced faith alone with the double justification doctrine: salvation begins by faith, but requires a secondary justification of works for final salvation. Luther's successor after Luther died was Melancthon. He succeeded in formally fixing Lutheran doctrine in 1556 to be double justification doctrine. However, the Lutherans after his death reversed it back in 1580 in the Book of Concord to strict "faith alone" doctrine. (See Preface to JWOS.)
And hence died any courage to fix this mistake thereafter. We are all living therefore in that 1580 Bubble of Cheap Grace Doctrine, as Bonhoeffer calls it. The faith-alone proponents defeated the correction that Luther and Melancthon effectuated over much resistance prior to Melancthon's death. The solafidists of today won't teach your pastors in seminary this ever happened, even though it is clear history.
What did the solafidists gain in 1580? They knew all the contrary verses that Melanchthon, Bucer and Major cited. But they gave in to MAMMON. Luther had made them all paid ministers for almost 30 years by that point. They were often paid by the Prince of the community in which they preached. But double justification threatened attendance and support because now rich people -- including princes -- would be told to repent of sin, and help the poor (not necessarily the church). And perhaps they would never come to church if they learned you taught such a 'negative' message.
The same benefits of faith-alone and eternal security doctrine remain today. Modern congregants of every denomination want to simply be assured their faith alone is all that is necessary; there are no hard choices thereafter to be saved. The pastors of today do not preach repentance for salvation because they know Jesus failed to win over the greedy rich man whom Jesus told to give all his money to the poor and "come follow me." This was the repentance he needed due to his prior greed. The man walked away from Jesus. (Matt 19:21.) 'We won't let that happen,' faith-alone pastors and congregants have said ever since.
Since 1580 to nowadays, we tell that rich man to believe Jesus died for his sins and rose from the dead, and he will be saved! (1 Cor.15:1-10.) If the rich man gives us weekly donations, he will hear regular assurances where he can sing "all is well with my soul." These words were written by Mr. Spafford (1828-88), a well-off rich professional. Spafford supported Dwight Moody who taught Spafford salvation was acquired for a song -- a cheap price. (Song of 1873 by Horatio Spafford.) As Moody Bible Institute boldly still proclaims, we are saved by "faith alone, in Christ alone, ... not dependent upon...works of righteousness to attain or sustain it."
But you can see Jesus teaches the opposite in Mark 9:42-47, and again in Matt 5:28-29 and Matt 18:6-9. What are you going to do if you are a pastor today, and you figure this out? You know you are not free to tell the truth, for you will be escorted to the door. You will lose the reliable lifestyle of a pastor when you have no other work skills. Your master has become MAMMON, whether you knew it was happening to you or not.
What have all the pastors before you done since 1580 when they saw this problem? They are no more ignorant than was Luther, Melancthon and Bucer who at least had some courage to fix this problem. No, all those pastors know those three passages on "heaven maimed" or "hell whole" destroy the pet doctrines of their congregants. They also know there is a prohibition by Christ from taking money from those to whom they preach. Why did they choose not to follow Jesus' teachings?
They were beholden to MAMMON. So they had no choice but to accept Paul who alone sanctioned them collecting monies to preach despite doing so was at odds with Christ's prohibition. But they knew it is shameful to ignore these contradictions. As a result, they were also forced to accept dispensational doctrine which Luther had rejected when he accepted double justification doctrine.
Dispensationalism was first expressly proposed by the faith-alone proponent Agricola in the 1500s. He argued this justified dismissing all of Jesus' hard sayings about repentance at odds with faith alone as belonging to a defunct Era of Law. Zwingli (1481-1531) was overjoyed, as he made the NT solely the epistles of Paul. (See Schaff, Creeds of Christendom Vol. 1 sec. 51.) Agricola proclaimed that the ERA of LAW has passed away, as Paul taught, and with it, supposedly all of Jesus' hard-repentance-law oriented teachings.
In 1536, Luther rejected this, and insisted Luther himself was wrong previously to say the Law was abrogated. (Luther had previously relied upon Paul for this conclusion that the Law was abrogated.) In 1536, Luther attacked Agricola's notion that said the Law is abolished. In Luther's work the Antinomian Theses (1536), Luther claimed anyone who says the Law was abrogated is a "false prophet" even if they talk "alot about grace." Luther cited Holy Scripture that affixes this condemnation on such law-less doctrine. See link. Luther never explained how Paul did not fall under this new realization. This left the one with "ears to hear" to understand that Luther implied now a negative view about Paul - his former darling.
The other reason pastors disregard the contradictions between Jesus and Paul, and revel in Paul's contrary views, is that the easy-believism found in Paul has a big payoff. It allows exaggerated assurances of salvation which swells the numbers of happy congregants. This greatly lines pastors' pockets and grows their 401ks. They preach doctrines that are highly popular and enthusiastically-embraced by millions. Otherwise, the pastors would have had to use Jesus' message about harsh steps of repentance, which might lead people to not continue attendance. The pastors know that would not work well for their own job security. In Jesus' case, such frankness repelled the young rich man who didn't like the high personal cost of salvation Jesus asked for. See Matt 19:21.
The Mammon-Based Gospel Is Endless Flattery.
Why don't the congregants wake up to what's going on? They have enjoyed flattery for so long they don't know any other Christianity than one of an assurance of eternal security for just their faith. They are a happy group of people who are told they do not have go to heaven "maimed" of any sinful pleasures. Who wants to ever escape from that joyful bubble? No one. Their church attendance is like watching an old film-reel of a funny clip of someone falling off a ladder; you can play it over and over again, and it always brings joy and laughter. It is a weekly seduction that you never grow tired of.
The Hireling Leaves Us Subject to Wolves in Sheep's Clothing
Jesus said the "hireling" over a flock of sheep does not truly care for them, and serves only for the money, letting them be destroyed by "wolves in sheep's clothing." (John 10:12-13; Matt 7:15.) As Reverand Brostrom wrote in 2003 about the modern salaried pastors in Hireling or Servant:
Approaching the pastor as an employee, therefore, is problematic as it promotes a hireling mentality in the church. This becomes apparent in congregations when they seek to accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires. Many churches, for example, look not for a man who is going to faithfully expound the Scriptures and shepherd the people of God, but for one who is likely to fill the pews and assure that the church meets its budget. The hireling mentality also exists among pastors. This becomes apparent when pastors are self-interested, showing greater concern for their compensation package and the earthly security it supposedly brings than ministering to the flock they are called to serve (Jn.10:12,13).
Based upon this conflict of interest, the modern pastors have squirmed away from Jesus' words. They have largely dismissed Jesus' lessons as belonging to a different dispensation. They have elevated Paul above Christ. They are not ignorant of what they are doing, nor that it contradicts Jesus. (See Paulinism Examples for many modern quotes and YouTubes.) They have wilfully deluded themselves to accept these bogus explanations by the allure of Mammon that is the key advantage in accepting these very same bogus explanations. That is why they can never give up Paul -- he alone gives the pastors of today the right to money to preach and teach.
Thus, given the state of the church today of well-paid ministers -- all unwitting captives of the denominations they serve, and their well-worn doctrinal statements, I guess Jesus' words are not important any more once Paul gave us the right to preach for financial gain!