I’ve been talking a lot about being a Tent Making Christian. But what is a Tent Making Christian? Let me explain.
Who Was The First Tent Making Christian?
The phrase is referring to the Apostle Paul. Paul was a tentmaker by trade, as described in Acts 18:1-3:
After this Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. 2 There he found a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had ordered all Jews to leave Rome. Paul went to see them, 3 and, because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them, and they worked together—by trade they were tentmakers.
In other words, Paul wasn’t earning his living by preaching the Gospel. To be sure, he had no problem with people who did, as he stated in 1Timothy 5:18:
18 for the scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves to be paid.”
How Do We Live As Tent Making Christians?
As I said in my previous post, I have a career in transportation. I don’t earn my living off this blog or website. I’d be willing to bet that most of you are just like me. You don’t have a master’s degree in Apologetics, or a Master of Divinity. You are an average everyday Christian that wants to use the gifts you have to help spread the gospel in a society that is becoming increasingly hostile to our world view.
Please don’t misunderstand me here. I’m not knocking those who do have these degrees and are actively working in the ministry. We should be eternally grateful to these people. They and their families sacrifice so much for the furtherance of the Kingdom. I can tell you having been around the people in the Masters of Apologetics program at Biola University, that we have a dedicated and talented group of people working in this field. I can tell you from experience however that there simply aren’t that many of them. This is where Tent Making Christians like you and I can play a role in impacting the culture.
Isn’t This Too Much Work!
I can hear the objection already. “But Drew, I am SO busy! I don’t have time to study and research all this stuff. You just said that we all have jobs outside of the Church and busy lives, so can’t we just leave all this to those who are called to do it?” Answer: NO!
Paul states in 1 Corinthians 12:28 that there are different callings in the Church. Some are called as Apostles, some as prophets and some as teachers. But in 1 Peter 3:15, ALL are called to “Always be ready to make your defense to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you”. That’s you and me folks! We don’t get off just because we don’t have a degree. It’s all of our calling, and all of our responsibility.
This is where I hope to make an impact. I want to assist you in being able to make the case for why Christianity is true. As Tent Making Christians (TMC), we have a valuable role to play. In the next post, I’ll begin laying the foundation to a more robust and thoughtful form of Christianity.