We are talking about financing the ministry efforts of fivefold ministers today in the economic world that we live in. Another way we see provision for fivefold ministers in the Scriptures which is still valid today is that God gives and we have “supernatural provision.”
In Matthew 17:27, Peter found a coin in the mouth of a fish to pay his taxes and Jesus’ taxes. This was not normal for Jesus’ provision; however, the Lord did feed 5.000 supernaturally. I have seen, in my own ministry, the Lord supply ministry supernaturally on a number of occasions. We are not talking about an extra cheque in the mail, or someone coming up to you and handing you an envelope with money in it that you were not expecting. While each of these is definitely provision from the Lord, we are talking about pure supernatural provision here. It is the kind of provision where the Lord provides money where there is no natural explanation for it, only God’s supernatural provision. Fivefold ministers can expect the Lord will provide finances supernaturally at times. Usually, it is for a specific need when there is nowhere else to turn for relief, and the Lord brings relief. While these times are amazing, it is very rare to live like this all of the time.
Provision can also come from local church support.
In 2 Corinthians 8:3-4, a gift was given to Paul from the local church. Some fivefold ministers are blessed by the support of their local church as God’s way of providing for them. We believe that everyone in the Body of Christ needs to be committed to a local body of believers. It doesn’t matter if it is a micro community (house church) or a mega church – fivefold ministers should be a part of a local expression. If they are not connected to a local church, they can forget what body life is like with all of the challenges of ministry and life. They will feel and be detached, and their ministry will not be as relevant as it would be if they were part of a local expression.
A developing fivefold gift will first be acknowledged in the local church. It is in the environment of local church accountability that it is allowed to be tested, developed, mentored, and matured. You wouldn’t allow a surgeon to operate on you if he didn’t have the proper training, mentoring and accountability of the medical board that brings correction to him if he makes mistakes.
Why then would you allow a prophet to speak things into your life if he has not had the proper training, mentoring and accountability 0f a local church to bring correction and adjustment into his life? It would be pure foolishness. I run into fivefold ministers like this from time to time as I travel to various parts of the world. They have a true calling and gift but are not accountable anywhere. and they want to prophesy over me. I am guarded with those who cannot or will not submit to a local church.
Conversely, if a fivefold minister is committed and loyal to a local congregation and have a valid developing ministry, I encourage the leadership of that local church to try to carve out some of their yearly budget for that individual. The fivefold minister, in turn, should make himself available to serve that leadership team in any way they can to enhance the ministry of the local church.
Here are a few ideas of how a local church can financially help a fivefold minister:
1> Keep finances available in your church to bring in other fivefold ministers to train and invest in your own developing fivefold ministers. Pay for a luncheon meeting, allowing plenty of time for questions and answers and impartation.
2> Have finances available to send the developing fivefold minister away to a seminar or conference pertaining to his specific gift.
3> Cover some travel expenses as he ministers in your small groups.
4> Pay for the fivefold minister to go on a two-night get-away to a hotel or a retreat centre to spend time alone with God his Father. You are showing him that he is valuable and worth investing in.
5> Buy some teaching DVDs pertaining to their gifts and make them available. You are investing in the future.
6> Set aside a monthly amount to support the ministry of the fivefold minister.
All of these ways will show developing and mature fivefold ministers that they are of value to you, that you believe in developing the fivefold ministry, and that they are worth investing into.