They gave some statistic at Promise Keepers. If everyone that currently attends church in the U.S. were on welfare and gave 10% of what welfare gives, giving in the church would increase by 30%. Something insane like that.
That was one of the big messages of PK – be careful of money, it can rob you of spiritual power. There’s a story, you know how in Acts, this cripple asks Peter and John (I think) for money. They respond, “Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.”
The story goes, a Pope was counting a large sum of money and he remarked to someone else, “No more can we say silver and gold have I none.” And the other person responded, “Yes, your holiness, but neither can we say ‘Rise up and walk.'” The point being, the church had become rich at the cost of losing its spiritual power. I think there’s some truth to that. Anyway, random story from PK.