This is Part V of the article on the entitled, “Is Tithing a Biblical Requirement Today.” Because of the extensive Biblical research involved, it will be posted in 15 Parts. Although this subject may be controversial, the Bible tells us to, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15). “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32).
Of the hundreds of laws contained in the first five books of the Bible, why is it that in addition to the Ten Commandments, “tithing” is the only other law that modern pastors and other clergy try to retain? As previously noted, they retain it in name only because the only similarity between Moses “law of tithing” and “Christian tithing” is the ten percent. Christian tithing was never practiced by the New Testament Church. In fact, God doesn’t need or want ten percent of anything we have. God wants one hundred percent. Christ died for all of us, and He wants all of us, not just a percentage! God doesn’t want our money; He wants us! We are already bought and paid for in full by Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. We are now to live on a standard far above what we ever knew before Christ called us to become new creatures in the spirit. This can only be done through the Holy Spirit. Our flesh is profiting nothing.
“Yet you are not in flesh, but in spirit, if so be that God’s spirit is making its home in you” (Romans 8:9).
The Apostle Paul was not called to “baptize,” “circumcise,” or “collect tithes.” The kingdom of God is not food and drink. If we must give something to God, something physical, we should follow what Paul says in Romans 12:1-2:
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove that is that good and acceptable and perfect, will of God”
Paul tells us in II Corinthians 9:7 that: “Every man according as he purposes in his heart, so let him give, not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”
We should be very careful not to give to televangelists or others who peddle the Word of God for money, and the amount of money they extort from the public is huge. Exactly, what do they do with all that money? Is the majority of the money collected used for feeding the sick, comforting the homeless, and other ministries, or for their own personal gratification?
“Never have SO MANY… accomplished SO LITTLE … with SO MUCH!”
Paul tells us in Acts 20:35: “to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how He said, it is more blessed to give than to receive.” We should also give to the fatherless, the orphans, the strangers, the widows, the poor, the needy, the homeless, and the beggar on the street, as God gives the means to us. We should also give to reputable charities if we are able and to our family members, relatives and others in need.
Jesus’ followers did not pay a tithe to Him from farm products or herds; neither did His followers pay Him ten percent of their income. “Christian tithing” is actually a contradiction of words. As Christians, I believe that we have been sold a “bill of goods” into believing that “Christian tithing” is a Scriptural command from God Himself and can easily be found and supported in the pages of Scripture. I have not found any such evidence.
Pastors and other clergy teach Christian tithing as needful; they teach it as though it were a divine, compulsory law. There is no such thing as a “Christian tithing law” in the New Testament Scriptures. It is heresy (e.g., belief or opinion contrary to Christian doctrine.) Pastors and other clergy warn Christians that failure to pay this 10% tithe will cause them to be “cursed with a curse!”
There is Scriptural evidence that no such law or custom as Christian tithing was taught or even practiced by the apostles. As previously mentioned, if it was so significant that one could be cursed for not engaging in it, why didn’t Jesus or even the apostles teach it? The epistles are completely void of any such tithing custom or law. Gentile converts were never taught to tithe.
In Acts 15, we find outlined what the apostles all agreed was necessary for the newly converted Gentiles to practice, and by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, tithing was not included. However, one of the very first legislated duties taught to Christians by pastors and other clergy today is that they must tithe ten percent of their income to the Church.
Tomorrow, we will learn where Christian Tithing came from in the first place.
PART VI TOMORROW
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