[reflections about tithing]

[reflections about tithing]

After a brunch with my pastor, I was supposed to meet with mom and as I walked to our meeting place, I reflected on the things my pastor and I have discussed. One of the points was tithing – since I have been elected as a treasurer, I got to be more involved in the entire process of accounting for what we’ve got and thinking what can be done with the funds we have.

There are many opinions about tithing. Some say it’s Old Testament stuff so we should not care for it anymore (which makes me wonder if they want to do it NT way – sell all they have and live as a community). Some follow the Prosperity Gospel (which makes me think that those people might as well try to worship two gods – the God and money… since they expect material well being from tithing… Did they miss out the entire chapters where Jesus and His apostles talked about having nothing of their own?)… In our Church we believe that tithing is an act of showing trust to God – besides giving Him what belongs to Him anyway.

Often tithing “process” reminds me of a kid who has been given a chocolate bar by his mom. Technically, the chocolate bar is entirely mom’s… yet she chooses to give it to her kid because she knows he likes it. However, the kids often think that they have earned the chocolate and don’t even share it with their parents.

I have to confess that I haven’t always been a faithful giver. Yet this past year, I decided to do it every single month. It was easy in the beginning of the year, but it was almost funny that I hesitated in the end of the year when my salary has been raised and I got a bonus. It was almost like “Well, this sum of money is pretty big… I can do a lot of things with it.” Thankfully, God gently reminded me that I still had 90% left and that I knew where my tithe would be used. Β Heh… It is true that it is easier to give when you don’t have a lot πŸ™‚ Weird, but true. But it’s so rewarding – not in material way, but in learning to trust God more and more with these little things.

Did you ever have doubts about whether to tithe or not?

  • Don Walker

    I believe in tithing and I am confident that God helps me accomplish far more with the 90% than I would with the 100%. Pay God first, yourself second (savings) and then live off the rest. Help others when possible and you will enjoy your life more than when you selfishly focus only on yourself.

    May God give you wisdom as you handle your treasurers job.

    • thanks for encouragement and stopping by, Don! Great to see you here!!!

      "God helps me accomplish far more with the 90% than I would with the 100%." – so true! I am happy to find that out for myself.
      My recent post Michael Belk- Journeys with the Messiah

  • NO ONE, absolutely NO ONE pays the Biblical tithe today.
    Leviticus 27:30-33, Numbers 18: The First Tithe – a tenth of crops and animals and commanded to take the tithe to the Levites. Deuteronomy 14:22-27: The Second Tithe aka The Festival Tithe – a tenth of crops, plus add to that the firstborn animals, and take for the yearly feast. Deuteronomy 14:28-29: The Third Tithe aka The Three-Year Tithe aka The Poor Tithe – a tenth of crops, kept at home, and invite the Levites, widows, orphans, stranger to eat. Which do you do?

    Now, tell me. Which of the above three tithes commanded by God do you follow?

    • I did not claim that I follow the Biblical (OT) tithe to the letter, Gary. But I am striving to live according to the life He calls me to live. Since I don't own animals and don't grow crops, I obviously cannot give a tenth of that (instead, I give the tithe out of my salary). Inviting the Levites (i.e. pastors and leaders) and helping orphans is what I can do and try to do.
      My recent post Michael Belk- Journeys with the Messiah

      • eliteinchrist

        Now this is where the tyre actually hits the road. You mentioned 2 things in your response to Gary’s comment that gives me the impression that you may not be fully acquainted with tithing.

        The biblical tithes as Gary stated was always A TENTH of crops and livestock from the land of Israel alone. It was the taxation system for the nation of Israel which is quite akin to the taxes we pay to our respective governments today. And just as we have public office holders such the police, judges, legislators etc. who dispense public duties and are paid from our taxes, so also were the priests and Levites the public office holders of ancient Israel and took some of the tithes, with the less privileged getting some and the giver of the tithes eating the rest. In the new dispensation pastors and ministers do not replace the Levitical priests. This is wrongly used to justify the continuance of tithing. Every believer today is a priest.

        In the New Testament, there is no minimum percentage required to be given. All we are asked to do is to cheerfully and willingly give anything we want to give be it 1%, 5%, 10% or 100% (See 2 Cor 9). So God does not look at what you give but the heart with which you give it.

  • Zee, I was so fortunate when my mom taught me to tithe when I was very, very little. Only 5 years old. So, since I've been tithing all my life, it's not even a thought now to keep that percentage.

    As my father-in-law always says… (He was a successful business man who owned 2 businesses): "It is easier to live on 90% than 100%" and "I always made more money in 6 days than in 7 days." (Because they used to stay open on Sundays)

    Honestly, I don't think people are sinners who work on Sunday, or anything like that. But I do think those who honor God are going the right way!

    • It's cool that you have learned that when very young – habits like this one always are easier to learn when you are a kid.

      "I always made more money in 6 days than in 7 days." – yup, because we all need rest – both physical and spiritual (and God knew it)))

      thanks for the comment, Kely πŸ™‚
      My recent post Michael Belk- Journeys with the Messiah

  • I began tithing in college and Jo & I have since Day 1 of our marriage. At times it wasn't always easy to do so but we found God faithful to us. I have considered the tithe (10%) to be my base line and to work from there. I love to give, not only to the church, but also to others whom I can help. I consider it a blessing that I can. To answer your question: at this point I can honestly say No I don't question it.
    My recent post Identity Crisis Unpacked

    • it is indeed a great blessing when you realize that you can help someone else. it sometimes can make me sad that i cannot help everyone, but still helping those i can is rewarding in a sense that is beyond any material way. it's a fun trust test to learn – and so far i am enjoying it.
      My recent post Michael Belk- Journeys with the Messiah

  • shark_bait

    If I start to worry that I can't afford to tithe anymore, I just pray that GOD will reduce my earnings to a level where I can tithe.

    Works every time. πŸ™‚

  • Interesting post. I was reading "How To Be Perfect", a book by Daniel Harrell. It is about one church’s experiment in living the Old Testament book of Leviticus. Taking Leviticus laws and trying to apply them to a modern-day world can be a daunting task. Leviticus 27:30-33 Tithing is tough in a 2 income world and with this tough economy.My wife and I try to tithe and we have great intentions but writing that check to the church always seems to fall after the grocery and heating bills.
    My recent post On Bookshelves at Barnes and Noble!

    • Thanks for coming by! πŸ™‚ Sounds like a good book to check out – experiments are always a fun thing (at least when you look back at the experience you've gained). Seems like tithing inspires the most "experiments" in Churches – I have heard of several interesting tactics.
      My recent post javert – the power of the past

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