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Author Topic: Tithe or Offering?  (Read 3100 times)

hymnsinger

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Tithe or Offering?
« on: May 12, 2009, 12:23:34 PM »
My first instinct would be to say that tithing is an Old Testament command. God commanded the Israelites to give a tenth of their firstfruits to Him through the Levites.

"Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: 'The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. And he thought within himself, saying, 'What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?" So he said, "I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, 'Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.'" 'But God said to him, "Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided? So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.'" [Luke 12:16-21]

Some equate the storehouse in this passage to the Levitical storehouse, but this is not what is discussed here.

"And we made ordinances to bring the firstfruits of our ground and the firstfruits of all fruit of all trees, year by year, to the house of the LORD; to bring the firstborn of our sons and our cattle, as it is written in the Law, and the firstborn of our herds and our flocks, to the house of our God, to the priests who minister in the house of our God; to bring the firstfruits of our dough, our offerings, the fruit from all kinds of trees, the new wine and oil, to the priests, to the storerooms of the house of our God; and to bring the tithes of our land to the Levites, for the Levites should receive the tithes in all our farming communities. And the priest, the descendant of Aaron, shall be with the Levites when the Levites receive tithes; and the Levites shall bring up a tenth of the tithes to the house of our God, to the rooms of the storehouse. For the children of Israel and the children of Levi shall bring the offering of the grain, of the new wine and the oil, to the storerooms where the articles of the sanctuary are, where the priests who minister and the gatekeepers and the singers are; and we will not neglect the house of our God." [Nehemiah 10:35-39]

It would also appear that the Priests only got a tithe of the tithe [1%], also Joshua 21:8

We all know what God said about tithing in Malachi because every Pastor preaches on this as if it were for the Church. Or do we? Who is God addressing here? He talks about offering on the altar. So who is allowed to make offerings on the altar?

Finally in chapter 2 God makes it very clear He is addressing the Priests. OK, the New Testament does say we are kings and priests. But not in the same manner as Levitical priests. But because the veil was torn from top to bottom allowing believers the same access to the altar, the throne of grace, as the priests.

So, lets talk about the New Testament, which by the way, as with most wills and testaments, did not come into effect until the Testator [Jesus] died.

We have mention of Abraham tithing to Melchizedek in a letter written to the [surprise, surprise] Hebrews. Melchizedek is clearly shown a type of Christ. Everything known about him from the OT is found in Gen. 14:17-20 and Ps. 110:4. He is believed to be according to the order of Melchizedek. Our Lord Jesus could never have been a Levitical priest because He was born of the tribe of Judah [Heb. 7:14] and not the tribe of Levi. Thus He must be associated with another order of priests, that of Melchizedek. Both Christ and Melchizedek were men [Heb. 7:4; 1 Tim. 2:5]; both were king-priests [Gen. 14:18; Zech. 6:12-13]; both were appointed directly by God [Heb.7:21]; both were called "King of righteousness" and "King of peace" [Heb. 7:2; Isa. 11:5-9].

The main evidence given is in Gen 14: 18 "Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High." Bread and wine symbolizes the last supper and Christ's body and blood.

"Therefore I thought it necessary to exhort the brethren to go to you ahead of time, and prepare your generous gift beforehand, which you had previously promised, that it may be ready as a matter of generosity and not as a grudging obligation. But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver." [2 Cor 9:5-7]

1 -The PURPOSEFUL GIVER. Giving because they reap what they sow.

2 - The GRUDGING GIVER. Giving because his pastor said it was God's word and the church needs it to continue it's operations. Even if it is within their means to give more, they will stick to the 10% and not a penny more.

3 - The NECESSITY GIVER. Believes that they must tithe the firstfruit according to the Levitical law.

None of these give for the right reason. They are not cheerful givers.

4 - The CHEERFUL GIVER. This is the one that gives even if it means cutting down on life's necessities. They believe that if Jesus can give His life that we may have life, then they can give not only a tithe but more often an offering for missionary work as well. They may not know it but they don't believe in the TITHE.  Their philosophy is based on New Testament giving in Acts 4:34, 35 where each became his brothers keeper. This is where I stand. I use a tenth as a starting point if and when possible.

But the church must assume responsibility in that most citizens are already taxed and for the church to demand or make a person feel they are sinning [Robbing - as in Malachi] if they don't ante-up is wrong.

If the church needs money for it's operations and they do, then just say that. Let's call a spade a spade. Not an offering a tithe! Tithe [a tenth] is an Old Testament law and the church, the body of Christ, are to be cheerful givers because they love their God and their neighbor.

Church tithe and offerings expose the false teachings that have been left unchallenged for centuries. One of the main reasons why tithing has been unchallenged for so long, is our lack of understanding the Old and New Testaments.

Let's stick to the covenant we are under and that is the New Testament and give cheerfully as led by the Spirit. That is the right reason to give!

"And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" [Acts 20:35b]

In His service
>< ))/*>
[<Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.>]

hymnsinger

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Re: Tithe or Offering?
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2010, 08:14:06 AM »
Pastors still don't get it!

I watched a young pastor on TV yesterday trying to explain how to simplify giving. He took out 10 one dollar bills and from that group he took one away and said this is God's. Explaining that we still gets to keep 9. What?

Is he living in Utopia? The first hand you see reaching out to take 3 of those bills is the government. Now you only have 6 dollars from the ten.

He then said if we could now exchange those one dollar bills with 100 dollar bills we still get to keep 900. Well, now the government is even more pleased because now it gets to take 4 of those 100 dollar bills leaving you with only half of what you worked so hard for. And if we exchange the hundreds for 1000 dollar bills the government helps itself to 5, leaving you with four 1000 dollar bills.

When will the church realize that tithing was for the Levites and that sensible giving from that which is ungrudgingly purposed from the heart is for the church.

Remember that the priests were basically the government to the Israelites.

In His service
>< ))/*>
[<Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.>]