Title: Budgeting for a Healthy Church: Aligning Finances with Biblical Priorities for Ministry

Reviewed by: G. Connor Salter, Professional Writing alumnus from Taylor University, Upland, IN.

Title: Budgeting for a Healthy Church: Aligning Finances with Biblical Priorities for Ministry

Author: Jamie Dunlop

Publisher: Zondervan

Publication Date: April 2, 2019

Format: Softcover (paperback)

Length: 176 pages


“to understand what really matters to a church,” Jamie Dunlop writes, “look past its vision statement, past its website, past its glossy brochures, and look at its budget. Follow the money.” The hard part for most churches is they don’t know what the Bible teaches about how to use money wisely in a church context. Dunlop aims to remedy that situation by outlining Scripture teachings that apply to:

  • How much control pastors should have over church budgets
  • How to encourage faithfulness rather than just big numbers
  • How to make sure church give their staffs enough monetary support
  • How to approach paying for church programs, missions and outreach programs
  • How to approach paying the church’s operational costs
  • How to use budgets to communicate important values to congregations

Dunlop also adds in more specific details, such as footnotes explaining various financial principles and multiple worksheets and templates church leaders can use.

While this book is primarily about the Biblical principles that apply to church budgeting, Dunlop strikes a good balance between theory and practice by including footnotes that explain financial ideas further. Readers will likely need a little financing background to understand some of the language Dunlop uses when explaining those ideas, but otherwise this book is highly readable. Most importantly, Dunlop challenges ideas about budgeting that lead to consumerist and divided churches, focusing on the sometimes counter-intuitive but wiser ideas Scripture teaches about how churches should spend their money. All things considered, this book is a great resource for church leaders and administrators seeking to honor God with their finances.


Rating (1 to 5 stars)

4 stars

Intended Audience

Pastors and church leaders seeking Scripture’s principles for how to manage a church’s money and prioritize programs.

Christian Impact

This book will help leaders understand what the Bible really has to say about church finances, a topic that doesn’t often get discussed or explained well.

About Cecelia Carey

The Evangelical Church Library Association, founded in 1970, is a fellowship of Christian churches, schools, and individuals.

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