This is a summary of my position and the argument for that position:
Position: Scripturally, we cannot justify paying elders/pastors a salary based on their position:
1. Generally, all believers should “work with their hands” in order to provide support for themselves and others. (see “What about work?“) Whatever it means to “work with your hands”, Paul keeps it separate from work that is offered in service to others as a follower of Jesus – leading, teaching, admonishing, etc.
1. a. Elders specifically should “work with their hands” in order to provide for themselves and others. (see “What about work for elders/pastors?“) Again, according to Paul, this type of work is distinct from their work in shepherding the flock of God.
2. “Double honor” is not a salary offered to elders because of their position. (see “What about honor for elders/pastors?“) Instead, “double honor” represents a response from individuals given to those who have already taught and led (including elders). This response may include money, but it is given by the individual (not a corporate salary) in response to the elders’ service, not their position.
3. Elders/pastors do not have a “right” to receive compensation because of their position. (see “What about the right of elders/pastors?“) Instead, this “right” is reserved to believers who are travelling away from their home and their source of income. Plus, even those travelling believers are encouraged to give up their right by Paul’s instruction and example.
While there have been several comments regarding testimony or experience, only a few have interacted with the points of my argument. I would encourage you to consider these points of argument and either refute them or support them as you see fit. Thank you for your interaction on this very important topic.
By the way, I do not believe that we can justify paying a salary to an elder/pastor from Scripture. This does not mean that I condemn everyone who believes otherwise. There have been many believers (the majority by far) throughout history who have believed that it is acceptable to pay a salary to an elder/pastor. There are many believers (the majority by far) today who believe that it is acceptable to pay a salary to an elder/pastor. I disagree with them, but I admit that I could be wrong. And, this is why I welcome your input on this issue.
Series: Scripturally, we cannot justify paying elders/pastors a salary based on their position.