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Biblical Tithing During Times of Financial Hardship


What Is Biblical Tithing?

The simple answer to the question, "What is biblical tithing?" is: paying tithes according to the scriptures on tithing. However, there's more to the answer than that because all scripture of God must be rightly divided (2 Timothy 2:`15). Numerous church leaders continue to promote the financial backing of their own often non-Christian agendas by pressuring members of their congregation as well as other Christian believers to practice what they call biblical tithing. According to them, biblical tithing is simply paying tithes and offerings to them. They forcefully preach the scripture of Malachi 3:8-11 to support their begging and their demands for money. Malachi 3:8-11 reads, "Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer (enemy) for your sakes...."

Christian believers who don't search the scriptures on tithing for themselves to know what real biblical tithing is, are easily convinced by the reading of the passage in Malachi. They're easily persuaded to believe that if they don't practice paying tithes, even during financial hardship, that they will not only miss out on blessings, but that they will be cursed. The topic of biblical tithing is only one of so many issues in the Christian church on which people are being manipulated and misled. They just accept what the leaders tell them without learning all of the rest of what the word of God says on the subject. We can't rightly divide the word of God if we don't know it.

A Real Life Bad Experience After Paying Tithes

A young single mother experiencing financial hardship received a disconnect notice from the energy company after practicing what she had been told was biblical tithing. She paid her tithes and offerings with the money she needed to pay her light bill. Christian leaders had assured her that paying tithes and offerings were to be placed above paying her light bill. She was told that by practicing biblical tithing according to the passage in Malachi that God would pour out a great blessing on her for her good intentions and obedience to him. What she received was a disconnect notice and later found herself with no electricity. When she asked the "leaders" why God had allowed her lights to get shut off, she was given convenient "answers." She was told that she must not have had real faith when she took her bill money and used it to practice biblical tithing.

She then reminded them that had she not had faith, she would not have paid tithes instead of paying the electric company in the first place. She was then met with silence and the shrugging of shoulders. One Christian believer told her that she should have used her last money to pay her light bill, but he wasn't able to explain how this would have kept her in obedience to the passage in Malachi. Why hadn't God kept his word? It wasn't a question of God keeping his word; it was a question of the young woman not knowing the word of God on this topic.

Biblical Tithing: The Rest of What the Word of God Says

While the gentleman who told her that she should have paid her light bill was correct in his advice, he should have been able to back that advice with the word of God. We turn to the New Testament, the testament under which Christians live, for our scriptural answer to this question of biblical tithing. The apostle Paul plainly instructs believers to first have a willing mind when it comes to giving, but that is only part of his teaching on this subject. He goes on to explain that Christian believers should also make wise decisions when working with the provisions God has given them. He teaches them that they are not to put themselves in greater need in order to give, because it is not good that some have an abundance while others suffer lack all of the time. Many of the Christian leaders demanding the paying of tithes are drivers of expensive new cars, have large sums of money in their bank accounts, and are residents in affluent neighborhoods. A good number of the people whom they pressure to pay tithes to them can barely pay their bills. This is not the equality of which Paul spoke as he reminded Christian believers of three things:

1. Do not give what you can't afford to give.

2. Don't create an unnecessary financial hardship for yourself in order to give to those who have abundance.

3. There should be equality in the distribution of goods, financial and otherwise.

Paul, in whom the Spirit of God lived, taught, "For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath NOT. For I mean NOT that other men be eased and ye be burdened. But, by an EQUALITY, that now at this time your abundance (if you have it) may be a supply for their want (need), that their abundance also may be a supply for YOUR want, that there may be EQUALITY. As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack" (II Corinthians 8:12-15).

God had already provided for the young woman to pay her light bill. She was not to take his provision and give it to those who had abundance, thus continuing to promote inequality. This is NOT biblical tithing. What is more is that paying tithes under the New Testament is not confined to money. We also realize that not just a tenth, but ALL of our money, time, energy, resources, and even ourselves: mind, body, and spirit belong to God. This is true biblical tithing.

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I live in ca,and it is no secret that the cost of living is high.I and my wife did buy a home, but she lost her job now its down to one income. I have two kids, i paid off all my cars but even still I'm always short after bills are paid.But still i am pressured to pay tithes.I was told that this is happening to me because due to my non payment of tithes.I just don't have it to give.Even in church they call tithes payers first to give their money first, and say a special blessing on them only sometimes i feel like not going to church at all.My question is ,is my financial problems caused by me not tithing?
by: ebw
Posted on 2011-08-15 14:16:43


You ask if your financial problems are caused by you not tithing. You also state that your California household is down to one income. If you answer the following questions, you will answer your own question:

1. Is being down to one income in your household financial hardship?

2. What did the apostle Paul teach about tithing during financial hardship (please refer back to article)? If you are following biblical instruction on tithing, do you really believe that your hardships would be caused by following that biblical instruction? If you do, how do you explain the numerous rich people who have never tithed in their life?

3. Is your church's teachings on biblical tithing during financial hardship in agreement or disagreement with the scriptures provided (again, refer back to the article)?

4. The Bible speaks of many things that can cause financial hardship: laziness, corrupt government, injustice, etc. Why do you think that many church leaders quickly attribute financial hardship to not paying tithes?
by: Heavenly Manna
Posted on 2011-08-15 22:03:21

Biblical tithing was only commanded under the Mosaic law, was only food, and is not applicable to Christians. The only mentions of tithe pre-law was Abram thing from the spoils of war (which he returned the other 90% to Sodom - Gen 14), and a vow that Jacob made to tithe. Neither were commands.

Christians are instructed to GIVE as purposed in their hearts (2Cor 9:7) and we are also told that we reap as we sow (2Cor 9:6). But we are not mandated a specific percent (tithe).
by: Craig
Posted on 2016-04-12 19:31:57

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