Tithes – 10% or 15%?

Happy new year everyone and I hope you all really enjoyed your festivities. As with every New Year, predictions and prophecies would abound so would New Year resolutions. I just pray that the good Lord would continue to reveal Himself mightily to us in the name of Jesus.

It appears those that advocate the tithe keep taking themselves further and further away from the truth of God’s word with their clever inventions and man-made doctrines. I came across this seemingly benign cartoon circulating on the internet.

Self righteouness

Self Righteousness

At first glance, you would wonder why I am nit picking over something so trivial. But the cartoon is not as benign as it seems, it carries a hidden message of guilt and condemnation.

To start with, the message of the cartoon tells me how little pro-tithers understand the Bible and I apologise for being so blunt. They tell us that the Bible instructs us to give 10% of what we earn to God because it’s His tithe. Failure to do that will incur His wrath as He unleashes the devourer upon you. And they perpetrate this even though it sounds ludicrous and is totally unscriptural. But if they maintain that God asks for 10% of the whole, why are they tearing out their hairs on the 15% of a fraction the waitress receives? Simple – the cartoon is a stealth way of raising more funds by levelling guilt on those who read it.

That is definitely not the way of the Lord; it is definitely not the way of the Spirit. Romans 8: 1 tells us there is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ. Anything that brings feelings of guilt and condemnation is DEFINITELY not of God!

I tried to bring this up on one of the blogs I visited that had the cartoon and the kind brother, the owner of the blog, deleted that aspect of my comment and told me that his blog was not a place for theological debates. He said it was set up to help churches develop funds. The question I was dying to ask him was how? Through guilt, such as the message on the cartoon? Or through feelings of inadequacy?

Jesus said it categorically that HE WOULD BUILD HIS CHURCH! He does not need anyone’s help! Intentions might be genuine but the approach is definitely wrong and this is something God does not take kindly to. We can find a good example in the book of 2 Samuel 6. The children of Israel under the direction of David were taking the Ark of Covenant back to Judah and decided to carry the Ark in an ox drawn cart. This was contrary to God’s instructions on the bearing of the Ark. God‘s instructions were that it should be borne on the shoulders of four Levites. As they journeyed along, the ox stumbled and it appeared that the Ark would fall so Uzzah tried to steady it and God killed him! What is the moral of the story? God does not need your help!

It is God’s church and He knows it needs money, He will provide! He does not need any preacher or well intentioned believer guilt tripping His people into giving and that is just what this cartoon and the tithe doctrine assays to do.

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kyle
    Jan 08, 2010 @ 03:51:40

    Elite,
    You may not know it, but there are people who do subscribe to your blog, myself being one of them. This being said, I do not recall your other posts on tithing beyond those that summarize your opinions here.

    That being said, what do you suggest a Christian do with his money? 0% to the church? I would like to hear your solution and what you do.

    Disclaimer: I’ll let you respond, then I’ll tell you what book I’ve recently read that you’ll be interested in and what I do with my money.

    Reply

    • eliteinchrist
      Jan 08, 2010 @ 08:20:01

      Hi Kyle, thanks for dropping by and you may not think that I’d remember you but I do. I do remember we had a chat about tithes and I refered you to the first post I wrote on the subject. You believe I summarize my opinions but have you checked all that I have written and weighed them against scriptures?

      Read the post carefully, I never said do not give towards God’s work but I am only against these strong arm techniques used to raise church funds. People should never be pressured into giving but should be allowed to give what they are able to without any percentage being set as the minimum. That is what scripture admonishes (please see 2 corinthians 8).

      Truth be told, God owns the entire 100% of all that you earn anyway and the first step towards giving is having a relationship with God. If this relationship is in place, you do not need a 10% rule to make you give instead your heart would respond cheerfully to the gentle promptings of the Spirit. Herein lies the freedom in Christianity.

      I cannot tell any christian what to do with their money, God has not given me that much authority. What every believer does with his or her money is entirely between them and God. God who sees in secret would reward openly. Also, I am not a standard, the Bible is and I give freely and cheerfully without adhering to any so-called minimum standard. However, if any believer feels led to give 10% there is nothing wrong with that, just as nothing is wrong with giving 1%, 5% or 80% because giving does not commend us unto God.

      I hope I have answered your questions?

      Reply

  2. marcusmaxis
    Jan 09, 2010 @ 05:30:01

    What? 2 Corinthians is talking about spiritual gifts not monitary?? God wants you to tithe 10 percent if you have it. If you have no money i guess you cant give 10 percent can you. LOL. With this economy that probably happens a lot. I have not been giving like I should lately but i will. Just be willing to help others if you can especially in these times. If you have and someone who doesnt asks for help. Help if you can.
    Cheers

    Reply

    • eliteinchrist
      Jan 09, 2010 @ 11:13:27

      Hi Marcus, thanks for stopping by. I actually did not get your take on 2 Corinthians, are you saying it refers to spiritual gifts and not money? I was referring to 2 Corinthians 8 particularly.

      We are admonished in scripture to give anything without a 10% being set as the absolute minimum. God bless.

      Reply

  3. W^L+
    Jan 10, 2010 @ 06:56:09

    I think that believers need to understand that we no longer belong to ourselves–we are bought with a price, and our lives are no longer our own. In the same way that my dog’s collar, water dish and food bowl belong to me because my dog belongs to me, so everything we own belongs to God.

    It is of great importance that we understand this, because the teaching of tithing gives people the impression that they can do as they please with the other 90%, and that is just not true. If we understand this, we won’t spend every possible cent on our own pleasures, because we’ll want to find ways to glorify our Lord with the money he gave us.

    Reply

    • eliteinchrist
      Jan 10, 2010 @ 19:21:36

      I totally agree with you, God owns everything you got. You truly cannot give Him 10% and then spend the remaining 90% as you wish, He is very interested in the way you spend the entire 100%.

      God bless.

      Reply

  4. Nance
    Feb 09, 2010 @ 03:46:29

    Wow, you really took up the cross with this tithing heresy! Bravo, brother!

    Reply

    • eliteinchrist
      Feb 09, 2010 @ 14:25:27

      O yes Nance. He that nameth the name of the Lord should not keep silent!

      How have you been though?

      Reply

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