Happy Heralds, Inc
FUNCTIONING BY FAITH
by Dr. Fred Wittman
“Not to be Sold!” Why isn’t Happy Heralds, Inc. selling The Gospels: A Precise Translation? Why do they not sell any of their literature? This question has been raised for many years. Now it is time to explain our position and how Happy Heralds, Inc. operates financially?”
There is a little understood and seldom practiced term used in Scripture to refer to this means of financing The LORD’s Work in obedience to the teachings of The Lord Jesus Christ and tersely expressed in King Solomon’s wise exhortation in Proverbs. This term is ‘Fellowship in The Gospel.’ Since having practiced this means of conducting The LORD’s Work both from the giving end and the receiving end, we can testify to the many blessings and much rejoicing that is received by being involved in ‘Fellowship in The Gospel.’
However before we explain, we should consider the principles that The God’s Word sets out for those being involved in The LORD’s Work and seeking to do it in The God’s way. The Lord Jesus Christ taught these principles by His life as well as with His lips. Throughout His ministry The Lord Jesus Christ ministered and healed without a charge and neither expected nor received any remuneration for His teaching or for healing. This was in keeping with the prophecy of Isaiah concerning His coming. Isaiah prophesied of The coming Messianic Savior and of the offer of the water and food for the soul that satisfies which is obtained without money and without price , all of which are included in the coming Everlasting Covenant (Isaiah 55:1-3ff). Eternal life and Salvation is to be freely obtained without cost. The Gospel is to be proclaimed throughout the world without cost. The Truth is to be freely spread to all humans without cost. And in fact The Lord Jesus Christ taught His disciples just before sending them out to the lost sheep of Israel’s house, to prepare the way for Him (cf. Lk. 10:1) into whatever place He would go, to minister without cost, “ 8. . . You& received without cost[for nothing], constantly give without cost [for nothing]!” (Mt. 10:8 APT). And in the next to last chapter of Revelation, The Lord Jesus spoke these words,
“5And The+ One sitting upon the throne said, Lo! I make all~ things news. And He keeps saying to me, Write! because these /sayings are genuine and faithful ones. 6And He said to me, [Mss. divided: It has come to pass. I am Myself continuously] I Myself have become The Alpha and The Omega, The Beginning and The End. I Myself shall continually give to the one thirsting out of The Fountain[Well-spring] of The Water of The Absolute Life without cost[for nothing]” (Rev. 21:5,6).
Additionally, King Solomon wrote in His Book of Wise Sayings that Truth is not to be sold, “Buy The Truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding” (Proverbs 23:23).
With these instructions, exhortations, and The Lord Jesus Christ’s example stressing the way to do The LORD’s Work, there must be a way to support the Work of The LORD without asking for or enticing people to give money to maintain It. And there is. It is by faith in God trusting Him alone to provide through ‘Fellowship in The Gospel.’
I. The Reality of Fellowship in The Gospel (v. 5).
Four people began the Happy Heralds ministry in 1952 on the basis of giving Gospel materials and spreading The Truth without cost by means of ‘Fellowship in The Gospel.’ We recognized the reality of ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’ as the Scriptural means of financing The LORD’s Work and adopted the policy to be dependent solely upon The God our Father and not underwritten nor benefited by legacy, grant, subsidy, benefaction, or profit from sales. No public appeal for funds by mail, radio, television or any other way is made. No attempts are made to solicit pledges, gifts, or donations by means of gimmicks or other enticing offers. The question is often raised, “Then how are you able to finance your ministry?” The answer is: “By Scriptural faith, that is persistently trusting our Father to provide the funds through His faithful stewards in their ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’ and through missionary support by interested local churches. This policy has been faithfully practiced since February, 1952 and our Father has faithfully provided for the ministry to continue. Although ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’ may be a term unknown and seldom heard of and generally not taught today, there are still a number of The God’s bondsalves serving Him throughout the world today operating on this blessed principle today.
This principle is found in the life, teaching, and ministry of the apostle Paul. It was he who introduced the term ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’ to the Philippians in his Epistle to them from prison in Rome early in A.D. 63. Earlier in late October, A.D. 50 a relationship began with the Philippian saints as a result of Paul’s obedience to the extraordinary appearance of a Macedonian man, which he experienced in Troas, Asia Minor (now Turkey). In response to that extraordinary appearance, Paul and his missionary team sailed to Philippi, the first city in which his team of four (Paul, Silas, Timothy, and Luke) began to proclaim The Gospel in Europe. There they spent three weeks preaching The Gospel and were successful in establishing a small church before being asked by magistrates to leave the city (Acts 16:6-40). This small church began a lifelong relationship with Paul which he called ‘Fellowship in The Gospel.’ The word ‘fellowship’ is the translation of the Greek word κοινωνία (koinōnéeah)which conveys the concept of ‘sharing a mutual relationship involving both giving and receiving by both parties’ (Phil. 1:5; 4:15). ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’ is ‘a common joint participation of sharing together in two-way communication.’
As we grow in grace and knowledge (2 Pet. 3:18), we come to realize that before coming to Christ we were the servants of Sin (Rom. 6:17). The Greek noun translated ‘servant’ is δοûλος (doúlohs) which means ‘bondslave.’ Paul indicated that all humans are bondslaves to sin and unrighteousness until there is total persistent obedience to the doctrine of The Gospel (Rom. 6:16,17) and therefore bondslaves unto Satan, the god (2 Cor. 4:4) or prince of this world (Jn. 14:30; Eph. 2:2). But now those reconciled, redeemed, and regenerated disciples of The Lord Jesus Christ are called to be bondslaves of The God and of Righteousness. Therefore we are no longer our own (1 Cor. 6:19,20). Our bodies and all that we have belong to The God and are to be yielded to The Lord Jesus Christ, Who redeemed us, to The God and to Righteousness (Rom. 6:6-18).
Jesus told His disciples, ‘‘Freely[without cost] you& have received, constantly give freely[without cost]!’’ (Mt. 10:8). Paul told the Corinthians,
‘‘Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but The Spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given [graciously granted as a free favor]to us by God’’ (1 Cor. 2:12).
We have received so much from The Father when we exchanged our old life of bondage to Sin and Satan to become bondslaves to The God and To Righteousness and received new life in Christ with all the spiritual blessings that The Lord Jesus Christ purchased for us by His blood. As we grow in the knowledge of The Lord Jesus Christ, we come to realize that indeed we were on the receiving end, but how much we received cannot be fully realized until we arrive in Heaven with The Lord Jesus Christ and in our glorified bodies. But the more we study The God’s Holy Word, the more we understand of the fulness of all the spiritual blessings He has prepared, procured, and provided for us absolutely free of cost. Salvation and eternal life is absolutely free, but after regeneration and in the process of being discipled we find that now we are on the giving end and The God, His bondslave pastors, teachers, and missionaries are on the receiving end financially while on the giving end of providing Truth without cost to all. Yet The God’s bondslave pastors, teachers, evangelists, and missionaries are to be receiving without asking humans for money or financial help. In persistent committed faith they are to be looking to our Bountiful and Generous Father in Heaven to provide all the needs in serving Him. They are to give out The Truth without cost while the regenerated sheep, as well as the lost and perishing ones are on the receiving end as recipients of Truth.
II. The Requirements of Fellowship in The Gospel (v. 6).
For this ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’ to be effective, there must be two-way communication on the part of both parties involved, each for the other. Both must be in daily communication with The Godhead. The faith partner in fellowship communicates with The Godhead in prayer for the ministry and the missionary. And as led by The Holy Spirit communicates with the faith ministry by sending repeated monetary gifts as He lays it upon the hearts of the individual faith partners or in the case of a local church of the deacons. In response the ministry and the missionary communicates with The Godhead on behalf of the faith partners, and communicates with them by acknowledging the gifts with gratitude and thanksgiving. Also regular reports on the progress of the work, answers to prayer, and current prayer requests (not involving money, financial needs, or requests for financial help) should be sent to the faith partner in fellowship (Ps. 37:25; Phil. 4:11,12,17). The reason requests for monetary and financial needs are excluded is because living by faith relies upon The God to provide in whatever way He desires. David’s declaration and the conclusion it sustains is that the one asking for bread (money) is not righteous thus he is not performing The LORD’s work in the power of The Holy Spirit but in the flesh (motivated by self or selfish ambition).
‘‘I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread’’ (Ps. 37:25).
Those who are righteous and their children residing in their home are never forsaken by The God, neither do they ever beg for bread which means food and / or money. People can only be in the category of those who are righteous by means of faith or persistent committed trust. Therefore those who beg or ask for money from humans, even to do what they claim is The LORD’s work, are not righteous. Because the faithful, righteous ones do not beg and those who beg are not righteous. Those who are men of faith look to The LORD to supply their needs without asking people (even the people of God). John states that the missionary bondslaves proclaiming The Gospel, who are to be helped are those who take ‘not one thing from the Gentiles.’
‘‘Whom&, if you$ send forward worthily of The God, you$ shall do well. For, for the sake of His name they exited, taking not one~ thing from the Gentiles. Therefore we ourselves are legally obligated to repeatedly fully receive the+ such like ones, in order that we become fellow workers for The Truth” (3 Jn. 6b-8 APT).
This passage is a good illustration of the practice by the late first Century saints in their participation in Fellowship in The Gospel. Saints are required (‘legally obligated’) to do two things in relation to The LORD’s work: (1) to send forth those bondslaves who do not take (or ask to receive) funds from the Gentiles but trust in The LORD alone to provide for their needs in proclaiming The Gospel; and (2) fully to repeatedly receive (embrace) the bondslaves in The LORD’s work by ‘Fellowshipping in The Gospel’ with them.
III. The Results of Fellowship in The Gospel:
There are eight benefits or blessings The God bestows upon those partaking in Fellowship in The Gospel to be received now, or to be stored up in Heaven to be realized in Heaven after The Rapture or on Earth in The Kingdom of The God.
A. The blessing God pours out upon the giver, greater than that received by the receiver (Acts 20:35)
B. Fragrance to please The God (Phil. 4:18). The God is well-pleased with sacrificial giving to Him for His bondslaves’ needs. The Holy Spirit moved Paul to equate the fragrance of the Philippians’ sacrificial gift to Paul with The Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary by using the language He used to describe the fragrance of the offering and sacrifice The Lord Jesus Christ made when He offered up Himself (Phil. 4:18 cf. Eph. 5:2).
C. Fruit reckoned to your account in Heaven (Phil. 4:17; 2 Cor. 9:10; Jn. 4:36; 1 Sam. 30:24).
According to Scripture the fruit of The Gospel, the souls that are saved by The Christ and regenerated by The Holy Spirit through the ministry supported by Fellowship in The Gospel, not only accrue to the account of the discipling missionary who leads them to Christ and disciples them, but also to the account of those who contribute by prayer and finance to the livelihood of the one responsible for them to hear The Gospel.
Even David laid down this principle when he and his army of 400 returned to the brook Besor where 200 too weak to swim across stayed behind by the stuff and guarded the gear of the others, The 400 did not want to share the booty with the 200 who did not fight the battle. So David responded by stating The God’s principle (1 Sam. 30:24). So it is with The Gospel, those who join the battle on Satan's territory will share the fruit of victory with those who stayed behind and sent the supplies to the battle front.
D. Treasures laid up in Heaven (Mt. 6:19,20).
The Lord Jesus taught His disciples to stop storing up treasures on Earth which dissipate and disappear. Instead treasure up for yourselves in Heaven where the treasures are not temporary but permanent. Treasures in Heaven are laid up as treasures on Earth are laid down by means of Fellowship in The Gospel.
E. To reap rich dividends in Heaven amounting to 3000%, 6000%, and 10,000% interest (Mt. 13:23; Mk. 4:20).
The Lord Jesus told the mixed multitude that in Heaven greater interest rates than can be obtained anywhere on Earth are available by sowing the seed of The Word of The God and reaping the Fruit thereof (Mt. 13:18,18-23; Mk. 4:1-8,13-29). Interest rates of 3000%, 6000%, and 10,000%. Paul wrote that ministering seed to the sower by giving monetarily will reap increase in fruits of your righteousness (2 Cor. 9:10). Simply by entering into and persisting in Fellowship in The Gospel with one or more qualified missionaries or ministries a regenerated disciple (saint) of The Lord Jesus Christ can accumulate immense dividends in Heaven. However we cannot get them here on Earth but we have to wait until The Lord Jesus comes again for us to receive them. Where can you get that kind of interest on Earth? Are not these interest rates worth your investment and worth the wait since they retain their value eternally?
F. To invest and accumulate interest in Heaven and The Lord’s work (Mt. 6:21; Col. 3:1,2).
This investment will keep your heart focused on The Lord in Heaven and Heaven’s values.
G. To prepare for your wedding garment by The God converting your righteous giving into fine linen for the wedding gown to wear at The Marriage of The Lamb to His Bride (Rev. 19:7,8).
What a wonderful privilege for saints (regenerated disciples) to be able to prepare our wedding garment for the marriage to The Lamb in Heaven simply by persisting in Fellowship in The Gospel with one or more qualified missionaries or ministries of regenerated disciples (saints) of The Lord Jesus Christ! (Rev. 19:7,8; 2 Cor. 9:10 APT). These two passages of Scripture are the only texts that mention the personal righteousness of the saints in The New Testament. Paul equates fellowshipping to needy saints (including qualified missionary bondslaves) with the clean linen wedding garment which the members of the Bride of Christ will wear at the Marriage supper of The Lamb, our Beloved Lord Jesus Christ.
Will your wedding garment be glorious because you gave sacrificially above the tithe to Fellowship in The Gospel? Or will your wedding garment be shabby and scant because you skimped in fellowshipping in The Gospel?
H. The God’s promise to supply all needs of those who sacrifice to contribute to the sacrificial church gift to The Lord for the care of a bondslave of His doing His Work, since The God also practices receiving and giving (Phil. 4:15 cf. 2. Cor. 9:10; Phil. 4:19). Please note:(1) the ‘your’ is plural and not singular, therefore (2) this promise is not for the everyday believer to claim as a promise; but for the saints of the local church who corporately gives sacrificially to empty her coffers for her missionary to the point she has needs. A regenerated disciple (saint) or a Scripturally operating Spirit-led church cannot out-give The God or suffer from sacrificially fellowshipping in The Gospel for Him (Phil. 4:15; 2 Cor. 9:7-10 APT).
[This study is fully explained and illustrated by a chart on our website should the reader like a fuller explanation of “Fellowship of The Gospel” in more detail and/or would desire to enter Fellowship with us in The Gospel and become a faithful partner in the Work of The LORD. To do so log on at www.happyheralds.org or .com. under that heading in the Missions section of ‘Evangelism-Discipleship.’ It may be down-loaded for study at your convenience.]
If you are a redeemed, regenerated disciple of The Lord Jesus Christ, wouldn’t you also like to receive the many rich blessings The LORD God has provided for His bondslaves who participate in this wonderful way of providing for others to receive The Truth as you did in receiving THE GOSPELS: A Precise Translation through ‘Fellowship in The Gospel’?
Happy Heralds, Inc. persistently follow this faith principle in operating this Work of The LORD. The following information is proffered for anyone who considers to be led by The Holy Spirit to enter this God-honoring and blessed experience of ‘fellowshipping in The Gospel’ with us. We operate on three funds to which our faithful partners contribute: the General Fund from which all expenses are paid, the APT Fund from which the publishing of The Gospels: A Precise Translation was provided and of The New Testament: A Precise Translation will be provided, and the Shipping Fund from which the costs of shipping The APT and other printed materials are funded. All contributions that are thus ear-marked are used precisely as designated; if not designated the contribution is put into the General Fund. All contributions are tax-exempt and a receipt is issued for tax purposes. Happy Heralds is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt non-profit corporation qualified to receive tax exempt gifts.
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