Missions is an area with relatively very little oversight. We as missionaries can raise funds and spend funds with very few people, if any, having access to that information. The lack of transparency in these matters is sometimes frightful. When this lack of oversight is abused it is often very damaging to the mission. Givers get disillusioned, national believers get taken advantage of, and the enemies of the cross have amo freely supplied for their constant onslaught of the front-line soldiers who are “holding forth the Word of Truth.”
The great majority of missionaries are good men and women who have left their home and comforts for the foreign field for the sake of His name. In an effort to encourage these good men and women I want to briefly outline some common temptations that go along with a lack of oversight when coupled with sinful sons of Adam. If some of the business practices that pass in missions were to happen in the business world they would be considered white collar crimes. Since we are not criminals, but sent-ones of the church, here are a list of unethical practices to watch out for.
- Lemon Law Violation– It is illegal to sell a car with defects that you knew about yet did not fully disclose to the buyer.
The first temptation comes when a missionary first starts deputation. He needs to get supporters for his cause so he is tempted to conform himself to the doctrines or preferences of the church that is looking to support him. The problem is that he contorts his image in opposite spectrums from one church to the next. Do you have public policy and private policy the way Hillary Clinton famously stated behind closed doors during the election? Remember how she took support from environmentalist groups on one hand while receiving large speaking engagement fees from Wall Street and Oil Companies on the other hand?