Learn the heart and motive behind trusting God with your finances
Salvation was meant to have a life changing impact upon every area of our lives. This includes our involvement with our finances. Though many consider being a Christ follower and money to be incompatible, the Bible contains a wealth of information and instruction concerning the issue.
Tithing is a concept which Christ followers should not take lightly, overlook or fail to respond to. It is a God inspired principle which will result in benefits and blessings, if we faithfully obey it. The choice to tithe is an important decision and commitment which requires faith in the promises of God and the study of His Word.
The simple answer is we believe everything we have comes from God in the first place. We give because we believe God has entrusted us to be leaders for hope in our church and our community.
The Bible teaches that a guideline for giving is called the tithe. That is giving 10% of what we earn back to God.
An offering is a gift given to a specific need above and beyond our tithe.
Tithing represents a practical expression of worship unto God. It is an act of worshipping with our substance. It is not meant to be a meaningless ritual, but a sincere reflection of heartfelt honor, reverence, and gratitude unto God for His loving care, compassion, and provision for us.
Tithing is a way of reinforcing our confidence, faith, and dependance on God's promise of provision and support. For this reason, when speaking of tithing the scriptures challenge us to
- Test Me in this, says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. Malachi 3:10
Tithing represents God's system of economic support for the local church body and those called into full-time ministry. It also provides financial provision for practical maintenance of the church and the continuation of the various facets of church administration, evangelistic outreach, and ministry.
Although Christ did bring an end to the curse of the law and did away with the ceremonial requirements involving sacrifices, dietary restrictions, holy days, and a host of other rules, He did not terminate the moral obligation of the law.
Though we are no longer in legal bondage to the law of Moses or justified through the works of the law, the gospel of grace has not done away with the responsibility to fulfill the righteous requirements(Romans 8:4) we have been called to as Christ followers.
This is an important, underlying consideration concerning the principle of tithing. It is not a dead, legalistic observance but rather an act of spiritual sacrifice that involves our heart and attitude towards God. It weighs upon our moral responsibility of spiritual stewardship, honesty, faithfulness, thankfulness, and heartfelt devotion. Tithing is an external act which should reflect the Godly virtues of our hearts toward Christ.
Christ did not do away with the principle of tithing. He actually placed His divine stamp of approval and authority upon it when He gave His inspired verbal endorsement. In the book of Matthew, Christ confirmed the tithe principle when He challenged the scribes and pharisees for their legalism and inconsistency.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders! for you pay tithe of your spices, yet you have omitted the weightier matters of the law judgment, mercy, and faith: these you ought to have done, and not leave the other undone. - Matthew 23:23
Though Christ strongly challenged the pharisees' twisting of the tithe principle through their legalism, He was careful to qualify His challenge by stating that the principle should not be discarded or discontinued.