to Tithe or not to Tithe, that is THE question

10 11 2011

I believe that that one of the main reasons why ‘church’ is ‘conducted’ the way it is, is because of finance generation. I do not believe that if money was removed from the church, that very many ‘churches’ would continue to operate the same way as they do. In fact I think that most ‘churches’ would shut down completely if finances dried up. Many Sunday services are pre-arranged with finances in mind. For example: The offering is taken up at a pre-arranged time at an opportune moment to maximize income!!! Income has become so important to churches because they have so many expenses and overheads. Expensive buildings draw people but cost a lot of money to upkeep and so the vicious circle continues.

So how are these ‘institutions’ financed? We are living in an economic recession and many people are struggling to make ends meet. Churches receive finances from ‘their’ members in the form of offerings. If the people do not give, there are no finances in the ‘church’. If there are no finances, the ‘church’ will have close down. So how does the ‘church’ get people to give on a regular basis to fund its infrastructure? By using scripture! What specific scripture? The only scriptures that speak on tithing are in the Old Testament, and the others are used by Jesus when He was speaking to those under the Law – the Jews!!!

This following scripture is used by many churches to motivate their members into giving, and unfortunately because of lack of knowledge, it instils fear into its hearers, because fear is the greatest motivator in the world!!!

Let’s look at these specific verses ‘generally’ used to get Christians to give and fund ‘religious’ infrastructures:

Mal 3:8 KJV Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.

This verse strikes fear into the hearts of the non-tithers. I mean no one wants to be a robber, and especially a robber that steals from God Himself!!

I personally tithed on every cent that I received. If something bad happened like one of my children got sick, I always questioned if it was because I hadn’t tithed correctly and that a curse had come upon me because of it. I was motivated by fear!

Then the Lord began to deal with me concerning this very delicate subject. So many Christians are caught up in tithing and ‘innocently’ tithe faithfully to their local church. I pray that the Holy Spirit will open up our spiritual eyes and that we will see God’s heart in this matter.

Satan used the scriptures to try and deceive Jesus Christ, and his modis operandi has not changed since then. He still uses the scriptures to try and deceive God’s children. This is why we must take very special note of 2 Tim 2:15.

2Co 2:17 KJV For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.

This scripture says that ‘many’ will corrupt the word of God. The next scripture says that people will be greedy and try and make money out of the gospel.

Jud 1:11 KJV Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.

I want to concentrate on Malachi and explain carefully what this Book says specifically concerning tithing. As new creation people, we need to understand what God’s heart is about tithing.

Deu 26:12-13 KJV When thou hast made an end of tithing all the tithes of thine increase the third year, which is the year of tithing, and hast given it unto the Levite, the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, that they may eat within thy gates, and be filled; (13) Then thou shalt say before the LORD thy God, I have brought away the hallowed things out of mine house, and also have given them unto the Levite, and unto the stranger, to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all thy commandments which thou hast commanded me: I have not transgressed thy commandments, neither have I forgotten them:

These verses tell us that the Levites were commanded to receive tithes and offerings from the people; however, in the third year they were to share this tithe given to them by those who had livestock and land to tithe on with “the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow”. In Malachi 3, these “sons of Levi” were not during this because they did not fear God.

Mal 1:6-8 KJV A son honoureth his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name. And ye say, Wherein have we despised thy name? (7) Ye offer polluted bread upon mine altar; and ye say, Wherein have we polluted thee? In that ye say, The table of the LORD is contemptible. (8) And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame and sick, is it not evil? offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person? saith the LORD of hosts.

It is very clear that God was speaking to the Levites and Priests of Israel because they were the only ones who could sacrifice on the altar!!! God was not talking to the people who brought the tithes to them. The priests were not giving to the widows, the poor and strangers in the land and they were stealing from God by not doing this. These priests were not giving God His due honour before the people by taking care of those widows and orphans in need. They were also not sacrificing the best of the grain and livestock to God, they were keeping the best for themselves.

This makes Malachi a prophecy for these same ministers who claim the right of extracting “tithes and offerings” from you because they are doing exactly the same things that the “sons of Levi” were doing; and that is keeping the better part of your money for themselves and their ‘pet’ projects.

In chapter 2, God is still speaking to the priests and not to the people as so many Christians have been led to believe.

Mal 2:1-9 KJV And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you. (2) If ye will not hear, and if ye will not lay it to heart, to give glory unto my name, saith the LORD of hosts, I will even send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings: yea, I have cursed them already, because ye do not lay it to heart. (3) Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it. (4) And ye shall know that I have sent this commandment unto you, that my covenant might be with Levi, saith the LORD of hosts. (5) My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name. (6) The law of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity. (7) For the priest’s lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts. (8) But ye are departed out of the way; ye have caused many to stumble at the law; ye have corrupted the covenant of Levi, saith the LORD of hosts. (9) Therefore have I also made you contemptible and base before all the people, according as ye have not kept my ways, but have been partial in the law.

Notice that in verse 8, many people were caused to stumble by the priests?

Mal 3:1-9 KJV Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. (2) But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap: (3) And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness. (4) Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto the LORD, as in the days of old, and as in former years. (5) And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts. (6) For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. (7) Even from the days of your fathers ye are gone away from mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto me, and I will return unto you, saith the LORD of hosts. But ye said, Wherein shall we return? (8) Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. (9) Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.

In this chapter 3, Christ corrects these sons of Levi for their sins against Him in verses 3:1-3.

In closing: I cannot find one single instance in the new testament where tithing is required by a new creation believer, or even where an offering was taken up for the ‘church’. There are many instances where the churches took up an offering for the poor in different places – Galatians 2:9-10, but never for the church itself!!! How different the ‘churches’ are today……..?

Rom 8:1 KJV There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, ….

End Note: I personally believe that God does not ask for a mere tenth from His children. As new creations, God requires everything from us because ALL is His. We have been purchased and have received His life, Christ’s life. We do not live but Christ lives in us. ‘Dead’ people cannot own anything!!!!! Christ in us is THE GIVER. God so loved the world that He GAVE………… Giving is who we are – Christ in us!


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