Tithing… A to Z.
a) Tithe means tenth. Tithing, as understood by evangelicals, is giving a tenth of one’s income to the work of the Lord.
b) The local church is often considered the equivalent of “the storehouse” where some OT tithes of agricultural produce were stored.
c) For centuries evangelicals (many, not all) have been taught withholding the tithe put them under God’s curse. Since less than a third of evangelicals tithe regularly, two-thirds would be considered – by some denominations, pastors, etcetera – “cursed with a curse”.
d) Tithing is the only OT demand imposed upon evangelicals.
e) Some suggest that which comes before the Mosaic Law comes after the Law. Not true. Circumcision came before the Law but not after the Law.
f) There are only two examples of tithing before the Mosaic Law: Abraham gave a tenth of his spoils of war to the priest Melchizedek (a one-time, voluntary tithe, nothing to do with income), and Jacob volunteered to give God “a tenth” if God kept His promise to Jacob (and only after God kept His promise).
g) The Mosaic tithe was a tithe of agricultural produce only, crops and farm animals. Tithe of produce from land outside of Israel’s borders were unacceptable. God’s tithe concerned Israel only.
h) Lord Jesus, the carpenter, did not (could not!) tithe. Peter, the fisherman, did not (could not!) tithe.
i) Tithes were collected annually, not weekly.
j) There were three tithes, not one, totalling 23.33%. (One of the three tithes was collected every third year.) One tithe supported Levite priests, another financed God’s feasts and festivals, the third went to widows, orphans and the poor.
k) Those “cursed with a curse” were Israelites withholding any of three tithes, not one.
l) The NT says very little about tithing. Jesus never instructed new covenant converts to tithe, nor did NT writers.
m) Luther, Calvin, Wycliffe, Bunyan, and Spurgeon opposed the tithe. Today, many Bible scholars (not the majority) decry the tithe.
n) Evangelicals are to be led through christianity by the Holy Spirit, “the Spirit of truth”. This certainly includes finances.
NOTE: O to Z will be the next 333 WORDS…. Exactly article.