- It reinforces or creates a clergy/laity distinction.
- It can cause others to aspire to "move up the ladder" spiritually.
- Others in the body are tempted to let the paid person do all the work (after all, they are paid to do it!)
- Within a network of simple/house churches, there isn't enough work to do to employ someone full time.
- Those who work in a secular profession for a living tend to be well thought of by outsiders (1 Tim 3:7).
However, I'd like to let the last word on this subject go to Ross Rohde, who commented in an earlier post:
The real issue is calling and obedience. Our Lord speaks into our hearts and minds (Heb. 8:10). This is part of our covenant relationship with God. His calling is different for every single individual. He may call some to be full time missionaries, which has its advantages and drawbacks. He may call others to be tent makers, which has its advantages and drawbacks. Other he will call to be a plumber or investment banker, each with its own unique set of issues. But if we try to understand this as the which is better, being called full time, part time to ministry or having a "secular" job we miss the point. What we should be doing is asking God what he wants us to do and responding in obedience. If we have a friend who is struggling with this issue we lovingly help them discern what God's call is for their life. The issue is obedience to a loving Lord.
If you think of it, please pray for Tony and me. We head down to south Texas on Sunday and then on into one of the Mexican border towns on Monday for three days of church planting training.