There’s been a great controversy with regards to tithing recently and in this post I’m going to share my thoughts on this topic.
What is a Tithe?
According to Google, a tithe is “one tenth of annual produce or earnings, formerly taken as a tax for the support of the Church and clergy”.
The first time we came across this in the bible was in Genesis 14:20. In this verse we see Abram, bringing his tithe to Melchizedek who was the priest at the time, when God gave him victory over the King of Elam.
Jacob in Genesis 28:20-22 promising to give God a tithe when he encountered God as he was running away from his brother Esau.
We also see the children of Israel giving and being asked to pay tithe as seen in;
2 Chronicles 31:4-5
And of course the famous Malachi 3:10
There is so much argument as to whether we should tithe as Christians or not. Those who say yes, use Malachi 3:10 as an anchor scripture. Just in case you have never read it, it says;
“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!”
Those who are against it, say we are no longer held bound by the doctrines of the old testament as Jesus came to set us free from that. They also support their claim with the fact that Jesus Christ didn’t really teach or make emphasis on tithing either.
So what did Jesus say about tithing?
“What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens,[a] but you ignore the more important aspects of the law—justice, mercy, and faith. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.” Matthew 23:23
Jesus Christ didn’t speak for or against tithing. In the above verse, He draws our attention to the things that truly matters. The things that have eternal value. He reveals that using tithing as a camouflage to mask how we neglect more spiritual matters is wrong. Note how He rates justice over tithing. Yea i found that bit very interesting.
So with the above debate, what is my take on it?
Tithing isn’t a gateway to salvation.
Our salvation is a matter of faith and not works. As a matter of fact, there is no amount of tithe we can ever give to repay God for the salvation of our soul. Tithing won’t take you to heaven neither will it take you to hell.
Acts 16:31 “They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household”
Ephesians 2:8 “God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.”
Romans 10:10 “For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.”
Tithing alone won’t make you prosperous.
Proverbs 22:29 “Do you see any truly competent workers? They will serve kings rather than working for ordinary people.”
Proverbs 6:10-11 “A little extra sleep, a little more slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest—
11 then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit;
scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.“
There are a lot of scriptures but these are the ones I choose to highlight. Hard work, discipline and diligence have a huge part to play in how we succeed. If we are to go by the literal meaning of the kind of blessing referred to in Malachi 3:10, there are a lot of people, Christians and non Christians who don’t tithe but are very successful and they have good health as well. In the same way, there are a lot of Christians who tithe and are very poor.
Tithing can be a test to show what we are willing to let go off for God.
As humans it can be difficult for us to let go of our money. Remember the story of the rich man who asked Jesus what he needed to do to have eternal life? Jesus answered him saying,
Matthew 19:21-22 “Jesus told him, “If you want to be perfect, go and sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me. But when the young man heard this, he went away sad, for he had many possessions.”
If we are willing to let go of one tenth, it shows that we aren’t allowing money control us.
Tithing is an act of total trust and dependence on God.
It takes trusting in God to still tithe when the money you earn isn’t even enough to take care of your bills. Tithing in this situation goes to show that you trust God’s ability to use the left over to meet your needs.
Tithing is another way of acknowledging our Source.
1 Corinthians 4:7 “For what gives you the right to make such a judgment? What do you have that God hasn’t given you? And if everything you have is from God, why boast as though it were not a gift?”
As for me, I tithe for the aforementioned reasons. I love the peace that comes with tithing. I see it as a seal covering my left overs. I believe there is blessing attached to tithing. But I won’t sentence anyone to hell for not tithing because God won’t. Neither will i make anyone feel guilty for not doing it.
Never tithe because you’ve been forced to. If you aren’t sure of what to do regarding this, pray and let the Holy Spirit lead you. And with regards to the argument going on about it, there are more serious things for us to be bothered about. Don’t tithe grudgingly. Tithing should be done out of our love for God and not out of guilt. Tithe with understanding.
Thanks for reading!
Do you tithe? What is your reason for or for not doing it?
What do you think about it? Let me know in the comment section.
God bless you!