A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog on the “Truth About Tithing”. Before, during and after writing this blog, I continuously looked to Jesus and my wife for reassurance. My wife as my witness, I told her that I was willing to be 100% wrong but I felt that the Holy Spirit was pressing down on this issue in my life. The more I read, prayed and studied the Bible, the more I felt misled by the modern day preaching of the tithe. I have always been interested in personal finances, even so that I volunteer at my local church as a Financial Coach. It is my passion for people to understand the basic principles of money, not from a worldly view but from a biblical view. Using the platform that I currently have, I want to make sure I’m teaching and preaching the correct message. So, I sat down to write a blog on the truth about tithing with my newfound passion and knowledge.
Between the dates of October 1, 2017 and today, the floodgates have been opened with a plethora of discussions, reading, newly discovered distant in-law relatives, books and headaches ☹. To say the least, the Lord pressed down a little harder and sent what seemed an army of helpers to guide me in this endeavor. It will require swallowing my pride a little, but I will have to admit I was wrong (a little) in my previous posted blog. On the right track, but interpreting incorrectly.
There are many occurrences in the Old Testament where the word tithe is referenced. Until now, I have always looked at the word tithe and thought of the action word. I thought tithe always meant the act of tithing. In my first blog, I quoted Leviticus 27:30 Thus all the tithe of the land, of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s; it is holy to the Lord. After further study of the word tithe in this context, it is not an action to tithe but referring to a tithe that was already owned. Tithe was used as a noun and God was the owner of the tithe. The reason God is the owner of the tithe is because Jacob made a vow. Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me and will watch over me on this journey I am taking and will give me food to eat and clothes to wear so that I return safely to my father’s household, then the LORD will be my God and this stone that I have set up as a pillar will be God’s house, and of all that you give me I will give you a tenth.” [Genesis 20-22].
Therefore, the three tithes that I referenced in my previous blog were never owned by the Israelites to give to God in the first place. Since God already had possession of the tithe vowed by Jacob, He simply gave it to the Levitical priesthood for their work in the temple.
But in the New Testament, after the resurrection of Jesus, you will not find one instance where someone in the early church taught or practiced tithing. Paul was tasked with sharing the Gospel with the Gentiles. Paul never instructs us to tithe in any of his letters. Paul, being a former Pharisee, would have been fully aware of the old law and not once does he mention tithing. He does, however instruct us on giving. Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. [2 Corinthians 9:6-7].
Each believer should use time, talents and funds God gives them. This decision to give is made between the believer and the Holy Spirit. This does include giving to your Bible-believing church, the poor, less fortunate, selected Christ-centered Christian ministries and others. All under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is Grace Giving.
Call or email us today if you or someone you know have questions about money or need help sorting through your finances. We’ve been there, and we are eager to help!