Recently a man who attends The Man in the Mirror Bible Study every Friday online asked a question about tithing that I suspect a lot of men wonder about. So with his permission, here‚Äôs our exchange.
Abe: I have a question about tithing. I have not treated God‚Äôs money very well over my life. I am 52, married five years and have three very young children.
Unfortunately, I am embarrassed to say we have no savings and about $38,000 in debt outside our condo mortgage. About $12,000 of that is credit cards, $10,000 is student loans, and $15,000 is from a friend who loaned me money for the condo. We had been giving 5-7 percent of our net income until this year when we upped it to 10 percent. If we did not tithe, we could put that money to our credit cards and pay them off much sooner....
Erik wrote: ...the tithe. This was not only money...
Erik, the way you word this, it sounds as though you think money was the first thing, the biggest part of the tithe. Actually, the tithe was food. Money was only permitted as part of the tithe if it was too difficult or impossible to transport the crops.
Mike from New York- please look up the definition of storehouse in a Strongs Concordanance,also finish the sentence you keep quoting! "that there may be meat in mine house'" The storehouse was a place in the temple to store or put up the tithe. This was not only money but grains, foods, goods that they made or grew. This storehouse was a place inside the - temple "mine house" Gods House, the church. I am not being arrogant but one has to study the words and meanings to get a full understanding. I started tithing about a year after I was born again and I can tell you now God is Faithfull. I am not rich but all my bills are paid and I never have been left begging for bread. I do not have everything I "want" but God has given me all my needs and some of my wants as well over the years. Oh it's not just tithing that brings this either as a child of GOD Being a obedient child helps as well. A Father is well pleased with a son who obeys him and his word. God is Faithful. God is Faithful and God is Faithful!
Mike of N.Y., you can read the quotation from the Amer. Tract Dictionary, and I think it will give you a concise reason for giving to the church. Knowing your background and it is also a problem with my background, Luther covered it quite well.
Martin Luther wrote: Those who do not know God in Christ arrive at this erroneous conclusion: "I will serve God in such and such a way. I will join this or that order. I will be active in this or that charitable endeavor. God will sanction my good intentions and reward me with everlasting life. For is He not a merciful and generous Father who gives good things even to the unworthy and ungrateful? How much more will He grant unto me everlasting life as a due payment in return for my many good deeds and merits." This is the religion of reason. This is the natural religion of the world. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God....there is really no difference between a Jew, a Mohammedan, and any other old or new heretic. There may be a difference of persons, places, rites, religions, ceremonies, but as far as their fundamental beliefs are concerned they are all alike.
Only two religions, Christianity--and everything else.
Christopher000 wrote: Yeah, that was a good reminder for me, Jim. I have read the passages but forgot about them. Maybe 10% should go to support the church, and then anything above and beyond that we can give, can go to the rest. I say "10%" because it just sounds like a fair amount (to me).
Seems like a reasonable decision. But I can't figure out when the storehouse became the place of worship. That wasn't even true when there was a storehouse.
Yeah, that was a good reminder for me, Jim. I have read the passages but forgot about them. Maybe 10% should go to support the church, and then anything above and beyond that we can give, can go to the rest. I say "10%" because it just sounds like a fair amount (to me).
Amer. Tract Dictionary 1859 wrote: .... The principle of the ancient tithes, namely, that ministers of the gospel and objects of benevolence should be provided for by the whole people of God, according to their means, is fully recognized in Scripture as applicable to the followers of Christ. He sent his servants forth, two and two, without provisions or purses, to receive their support from the people, since "the laborer is worthy of his hire," Mt 10:9-14 Lu 10:4-8,16. Paul also reasons in the same way, 1Co 9:13,14 Ga 6:6. For purpose of piety and beneficence, he directed the Corinthians, and virtually all Christians, to lay aside from their income, on the first day of the week, as the Lord had prospered them, 1Co 16:2. There is no reason to doubt that the early Christians gave more freely of their substance than did the ancient Jews, Ac 4:34-36 2Co 8:1-4.
@Be like a Berean: I should have posted what I was else I was thinking while posting. I was thinking that I need to find out what the Bible says about tithing, and I was also interested to follow and learn from the conversation. The "I's" and "me's" may not have sounded right because I just didn't out all of my thoughts out there. It really didn't go the way I thought it would though. As for supporting my church: I do, and the bulk goes to them. I just don't do any calculating. Most goes to support them, and the rest goes to Compassion Int'l and other random things. Say 8%/2%, 10%/2%, whatever.
Thomas the Doubter, (By the way Lurker had a fairly good comment about the OT, but still remember, Legalism is Shadow, Christ is Substance ) Anyway, Thomas, it's good to hear you're at least a 20% er giver?
Galatians 3 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. .... Galatians 4 3 So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world. 4 But when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, 5 in order that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!" 7 Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God.---NASB
Erik wrote: To Luker: most of the Old Testament was written to the Jews. Does this mean I disregard the whole Old Testament and its teachings.
Depends on what you mean by "disregard".
Sort of hard to study to show yourself approved if you don't study the OT but if you seek to live by the precepts, statutes and judgments of the law; Christ, and Him crucified, shall profit you nothing (Gal 5:1-4).
Romans 6 is a great chapter in the bible. Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? (Romans 6:16 KJV
I am not putting anyone under the law, but when I was born again God became my father and I his son. As with any father son relationship I am under his "rules" (Gods Word). Yes, I can disobey my father and choose not to obey but then I would displease my father. I am not under the law but under Grace but God his my father and I want to be obedient to him and he wants me to be obedient to him. If I choose to be disobedient then their are consequences just as with any father/son relationship. It is hard to write in a short paragraph all my thoughts on this matter.
To Luker: most of the Old Testament was written to the Jews. Does this mean I disregard the whole Old Testament and its teachings.
Your thought process is all wrong. Your comment has to much "I" and "ME". You say you don't know what the Bible says about tithing, so why not stop there? God gives us everything we have, so shouldn't it be your utmost obligation to find out how to USE what HE has given you?
Another thing to consider: Who else is going to pay salary for those men pastoring? Just going to let everyone else pay your pastor to shepherd his flock, you included?
Erik wrote: So what we are not to listen to any of the law in the Old Testament ? We will just cut out all that Old stuff it does not matter because we are under grace! When were talking about sin, sodomy, idols, adultry, murder we refer to the Old Testament a lot but when it hits us personally "our wallet" then oh that is the Old Testament that does not apply. Shall we do away with the Ten Commandments as well? Oh you say we are under grace in this dispensation, well I guess we can just sin freely! Since we're under grace and all! YES, we should tithe!!!
ok. Where do I find the storehouse? (the meeting house is not the storehouse)
You may not have intended to do this but you have changed the topic of discussion. Are you saying that unless Christians live under the law they have a predisposition to an anything goes antinomian set of beliefs? Have you not read Romans 6? Where in the New Testament do you see an admonition to be put back under the law? You seem to disdain the salvation described in Titus 2:11-14 and to not heed the admonition of Acts 15:10. Not trying to put words or thoughts that you did not intend, just going on basis of your post
I have always felt like it is my duty to give back and I figure that 10% is a good number. I don't feel like I have to give it all to a church, though they may frown upon that, but rather spread it as I feel led. Like I give some to Compassion Int'l, may help someone buy groceries, hand $20 to someone in need on the street, etc. I don't know what the Bible says, so I don't know about the percent thing, but I feel like I should freely give as I can, feel led to, or whatever. As for the articles question, I don't feel like I should hand over my last dollar if it means that I will be living on the street the very next day. Prosperity preachers may call me faithless, but I call it irresponsible. How can I continue to give if I give to the point of being destitute?
He is King wrote: "Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me! But you say, 'How have we robbed You?' In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this," says the Lord of hosts, "if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows. Then I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it will not destroy the fruits of the ground; nor will your vine in the field cast its grapes, " says the Lord of hosts. "All the nations will call you blessed, for you shall be a delightful land," says the Lord of hosts. (Malachi 3:8-12 NASB)
I don't suppose your pastor ever mentioned that the whole book of Malachi was addressed to the Levites. How do you suppose this text applies to the Melchisedec priesthood? Can you picture Jesus withholding anything from the Father?
Erik wrote: Shall we do away with the Ten Commandments as well?
Most churches have. They break the 4th commandment every week with a man-made doctrine which falsely teaches that the sabbath has been changed or done away with (they can't agree on which one it is officially).
So...yeah....do we keep the law? Why tithing if not the sabbath?