That’s a good question to which I don’t have the answer. ABP, however, recently published a story considering that topic and their spotlight on Rick Warren was particularly enlightening, it seems to me. I’ve reproduced it below. You can see the story, in its entirety, by clicking here.
Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., became a reverse tither [living off of 10% and giving away 90% of his income] after the success of his Purpose Driven Life books. He detailed the motive for his decision in a 2006 interview with Beliefnet. He said he told God, “OK, God, I don’t need this money.… What are you doing with this? I don’t need this. I’m a pastor.”
Warren said he and wife, Kay, looked to Scripture for answers. Like [Joel] Osteen, Warren decided not to take a salary from the church. But he didn’t stop there. He added up all the money the church had paid him over the past 25 years and gave it all back. So the 10 percent the Warrens now live on is 10 percent of the income Warren earns from book royalties and additional ventures.
The Warrens have vowed never to change their lifestyle. They have lived in the same house for 16 years. Warren drives the same Ford truck he had before the book came out. And he owns the same two suits.
Warren told Beliefnet he’s aware of the stigma that pastors are in it for the money, but he said every pastor he knows would serve for free if possible.
“There are so many easier ways to make money,” Warren said in the interview. “Believe me, if you want to make money, don’t be a pastor.”