Tithing

The whole issue of tithing is interesting in Christian circles.  I made the decision earlier this year to give my money to God’s work in a different way.  Instead of giving money to my local church I decided to split it between World Vision (sponsoring a child) and TEAR (providing for whatever project is in need with a general monthly donation).

I moved to a new town at the start of this year and it took me a while to find a church to go to.  In the mean time I was thinking about what I ought to do with my money if I want to use it responsibly.  I can’t think of a better way to use my money than to help the poor and the vulnerable.

James 1:27 says, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”  Jesus was always on about helping the poor, the widow, the orphan, the alien.

I can’t think of a better way to spend my money.  I am at peace with my decision and I feel that God will honour the resources I am giving to bringing his kingdom here on earth.  Whilst I know churches here need money to survive and function (and pastors need to be supported) I feel like this is a better use of my money at this stage of my life.  We in the west have plenty of money (although I know churches here wouldn’t have plant of money if we all did what I’m doing), and I feel like this is a good and right thing to do.

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11 Replies to “Tithing”

  1. Luke 11:42 says, “But woe to you Pharisees! For you tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass by justice and the love of God. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.”
    In Matthew 23:23, Jesus says that the Pharisees are omitting the greater parts of the law, which are judgment, mercy, and faith.
    Luke 18:12, is a parable where the Pharisee brags, “I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.” Jesus ends the parable by saying “Everyone that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.”

    So Jesus never actually tells people how much to tithe or anything, but the OT says 10%, and I guess that’s a pretty good guide. There doesn’t seem to be a hard and fast rule, but I think God is more concerned with our attitude about giving rather than if we tithe a particular amount. He wants us to be generous, not stingy and giving just what we feel we ‘should’.

  2. I think giving money to World Vision and TEAR is wonderful, but not supporting your own church feels… off.

    I’m not sure what you mean by “this stage of your life”, but if you attend a church regularly it only seems right to support their good work. Besides, it’s not like giving to one means you can’t give to the poor and vulnerable, or that giving to the church is somehow a “less worthy” cause.

    But I guess at the end of the day it’s not our call, it’s God’s call. If you don’t trust the church to spend the money as directed by God, then perhaps another church would be wise.

    1. How on earth did you get out of that that I don’t trust my new church to spend money wisely?! That’s a very serious thing to say, and very unfair. I started doing this because I wasn’t going to a church for a few months. Now that I am, I’m still comfortable giving my money to God’s work this way. Jesus never said anything about giving your money to the church you attend. It’s about giving it to God’s work. Which I am doing.

      1. I never said “spend money wisely”. I said “spend money as directed by God”. If their decisions are made in clear tandem with God’s will then I cannot see a higher cause.

        Again, it is not exclusive. One can freely give to both. I just find the exclusion of your church a curious decision unless you do not believe those in charges of the church’s finances wait for God’s instruction.

  3. Tithing is something I’ve always taken very seriously. I think partly my upbringing, partly things I’ve heard and read.
    Our previous pastor did a few different series/sermons on giving, the offering and tithing. He spoke about how the OT was the “tithe” (10%) but that with the NT he believes that it’s 10%ish as a minimum and whatever else you feel God is asking you to give, kind of as a love offering.

    I know that for me, I always tithe my income to my church, as I have been there for 20 years and am a member and feel it is part of my responsibilties as a member there. Also sitting in budget meetings etc, I know where the money is going and how important people giving that money is!

    However, sometimes when we are given one off big gifts or income from whereever (and you know that our circumstances are pretty fluid) we will give in a different way to further God’s kingdom whether through people working for Him or through Christian organisations working for the poor and marginalised. Of course, we also give to them above and beyond tithing as our situation allows (or doesn’t allow sometimes!).

    I think it’s something that will always bring different opinions/views/beliefs. But as long as I know within myself that I am being (or at least striving with God’s help to be) a good steward and responsible with my money and belongings, and “tithing” (to whatever percentage it is) what feels right in my heart between me and God, then that’s the honouring thing to do.

    If that makes sense.

    1. Well said Jenny. I think it’s a matter between each person and God. He’s interested in our heart attitude towards the whole thing. If we feel at peace with God then I think he will honour that, and the money that is given.

  4. give where you feel it’s right to give…..anything else is bullshit…..there is so much GUILT MANIPULATION in our circles……..Jesus never had a word to say about giving to Churches………anything that comes from a motive other than a dirct response to a loving caring God is bullshit………the only person who can make the call is YOU

  5. There is actually a facillty in our Church so that if you give electronically you can still “LOOK” like you are giving, you place a plastic tag in the bag. Tell me this is for God’s benefit. Try showing up at Church every Sunday and letting the bag pass you by.Give on some other day, that no-one else knows about……….Look in the latest “Eternity” newspaper OCT 2011 pg 14……an ad …….NEW BOOK……”If you care about your relationship with God…etc ..etc…” Guilt …guilt guilt…..If you are giving out of duty, pride, perception your giving is about you …ie it’s BULLSHIT….

    1. Wow. That is truly sad. I haven’t given in an offering plate for years. I’ve done it electronically for ages. If I’m putting something in a plate to look good, I’m not doing it right.

  6. Sorry but you got me on my Soapbox now………There is a family in need in our area…. someone deccided that the Fire Brigade would take a collection on the main street….we drove through……we knew someone taking the collection….the look they gave us…..Guilt…….All the “causes” on FB if you don’t respond you dont care..repost this to PROVE you care……BULLSHIT……I don’t have a need to share with the world what my contribution shall be…….Don’t let the right hand let the left hand know etc..etc…

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