6 But by the twenty-third year of King Joash the priests still had not repaired the temple. 7 Therefore King Joash summoned Jehoiada the priest and the other priests and asked them, “Why aren’t you repairing the damage done to the temple? Take no more money from your treasurers, but hand it over for repairing the temple.” 8 The priests agreed that they would not collect any more money from the people and that they would not repair the temple themselves.
9 Jehoiada the priest took a chest and bored a hole in its lid. He placed it beside the altar, on the right side as one enters the temple of the Lord. The priests who guarded the entrance put into the chest all the money that was brought to the temple of the Lord. 10 Whenever they saw that there was a large amount of money in the chest, the royal secretary and the high priest came, counted the money that had been brought into the temple of the Lord and put it into bags. 11 When the amount had been determined, they gave the money to the men appointed to supervise the work on the temple. -2 Kings 12:6-11
The last thing a spiritual leader wants to become is a headline, at least in the negative sense. Too many times, financial scandals have given religious leaders a bad reputation that has been cast upon Christians as a whole. This scenario is not unique to today, but existed even during the times of the kings of Judah.
The priests were commanded to collect money to repair the temple. They did, but then the work was never started. The king then added a new feature–financial accountability. When the money came in, there was a formal procedure to collect, count, and properly distribute the funds.
Accountability is the solution to financial scandal among religious leaders. Certainly this principle can have applications in our personal lives, families, and jobs as well. In our culture, we often refer to it as financial transparency. While not every detail must be disclosed to be accountable, the important emphasis in this passage is that finances handled well helps leaders honor God in their work.
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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.