CHRISTIANITY, OPEN-BOOK ACCOUNTING (FINANCIAL TRANSPARENCY), AND DOING THINE ALMS IN SECRET

We believe in being open, honest, and direct — all qualified by the admonition of Jesus that one's intentions remain on the narrow way. Being truly honest is to have proper intentions. Being open for the sake of accolades is not a proper motive.

Consider the following and the wisdom it requires:

That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly. Matthew 6:4.

This is to avoid doing things to satisfy one's ego. To do things for an ego-boost is to detract from doing things purely because they are right. It allows for further distraction. It doesn't lead to perfect righteousness that is God and the highest heaven.

But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. Matthew 6:6.

Corporate worship turns bad when it is done for being esteemed by one's fellow human beings.

That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly. Matthew 6:18.

For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad. Mark 4:22.

God sees everything, and all the reasons for everything will unfold for us to see. God sees all the evil, yet God can still forgive repenting and atoning souls. It's truly the most astonishing thing. God's patience is infinite.

No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light. Luke 11:33.

Here is where the seeming balance enters in. One must learn to give, pray, fast, and the like, all without ego in mind but rather with others in mind. One must then openly manifest fruits consistent with all of this. Then, it will be no secret that one gives, shares, prays, fasts, and follows Jesus's New Commandment, which has the right motives built into it. The right motives are the basis of the law.

For there is no man that doeth any thing in secret, and he himself seeketh to be known openly. If thou do these things, shew thyself to the world. John 7:4.

One must reconcile a mundane paradox (a false paradox). One may simultaneously do the same thing in secret and in the open. It is all about prime motives. A pat on the back may be reinforcing, but it must never become the reward. Righteousness in and of itself must be the reward for only in that way will one avoid wandering off the narrow way.

But when his brethren were gone up, then went he also up unto the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret. John 7:10.

One may rightly pick and choose when and where to be open. There are different contexts for openness — when and where it is proper. It is divine semantics.

Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing. John 18:20

In the end, Jesus hid none of his teachings. Surely we can see that.

Therefore, we understand and acknowledge the reasons that so many entities push for financial transparency. There have been so many people who have abused the generosity of others. At the same time, those who are for financial transparency must design their systems around allowing donors to give to the righteous cause in anonymity as much as is necessary for such donors to avoid the temptations to swell their egos on account of a confused, astray, admiring populace.

It is with all of this in mind that we explain the loan indicated (as of the date of this post) is from Tom Usher to the Church. To clarify, this is an accounting procedure only. Everything that is mine is the Church's. The loan is interest free. The Church will repay it, but I, Tom Usher, will not make any private, personal mammmon profit or gain in the process. The loan is simply to allow the Church to continue on monies I have borrowed personally to that end.

That said, we want also to be clear that we favor open-book accounting in as much as it is consistent with communal (Godly) ownership of everything. We believe it is all in the family in the end, and therefore, it is all in the family as the means.

The Open-Book Experience: Lessons from Over 100 Companies Who Successfully Transformed Themselves, by John Case

We've been for open-book accounting from the beginning.

Only those who believe and share will partake eternally.

So, help us to help yet others the help yet others still. This is how the real Gospel will be spread and lived out.

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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 - present, website developer and writer. 2015 - present, insurance broker. Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration. Volunteerism: 2007 - present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.
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