The above clip is humorous, for obvious reasons. However, the untold truth that is preached to the masses is not.
Tithing, according to the Bible, is not a requirement in our day and thus a lie being imposed on the church for the profit of those in spiritual power.
For you to truly understand this misrepresentation, first, let’s examine tithing and its purpose.
1. What was the tithe? Tithing means a tenth and was established as an offering to God where the Israelites were required to give the first tenth or 10% of their fruit, grain, herd or flock to God. Leviticus 27:30-33 explains this requirement in detail.
2. What was the tithe’s purpose? The tithes was to support the Levitical priests and their families. When God divided the “Promised Land” for the children of Israel, the tribe of Levi received no allotment. The Levite priests were established through Aaron and his sons. Their responsibility was to offer sacrifices and officiate in the temple. The tithe allowed the priests to manage the temple without concern for food and clothing, allowing them to minister for the people before God. See Numbers 18:20-22.
3. Malachi 3:10, the most misinterpreted verse, “Bring the entire tithe into the storehouse so that there may be food in my temple,” was a literal call for the Priest to bring food that was filling the streets into the storehouse. Pastors lie to their parishioners by claiming the church is the storehouse and money is the food for the church – Hogwash!
4. What did Malachi mean? Read the entire book and not just one verse to understand the context. The tithe was grains and animal offerings for the priest, however if you look at Nehemiah 13:10-13, the Levis were not receiving the tithe and had returned to the fields to work, resulting in the admonishment in Malachi 3:8 of “Robbing God or deceiving God.” The Israelites in Numbers 18:30 were commanded not only to give their first, but also their best to the Levites and the priests were required to sacrifice the best. Yet for their own personal offering, the priests were stealing from God by keeping the best and gave God the sick and weak animals. This caused curses seen in Malachi 1:14 “Cursed be the deceiver, which has in his flock a male, and vows, and sacrifices unto the LORD a corrupt thing.” Malachi 1:7-14.
5. Is tithing a requirement today? No. Absolutely not. Tithing was a command for the tithe (grain or animals) to be paid to the Levites or Priests serving the temple and since there is no temple and no Levitical Priesthood ministering the temple then the tithe is not a requirement.
6. Is Tithing required by the law? Before the Law of Moses, all tithes were voluntary and usually given as spoils of war and as a vow to God for His help. Abraham gave a tenth of his plunder to the High Priest Melchizedek and the rest he gave to the King of Sodom so neither could take credit for his prosperity (see Genesis 14:18-24). When Jesus died on the cross, he was the ultimate sacrifice and the change in the Law. Hebrews 7:12-14 states, “For when the priesthood changes, a change in the law must come as well. Yet the one (Jesus) these things are spoken about belongs to a different tribe, and no one from that tribe has ever officiated at the altar. For it is clear that our Lord is descended from Judah, yet Moses said nothing about priests in connection with that tribe.”
7. How will the church and ministers survive without tithes? The disciples including Peter and Paul did not use biblical tithes for any of their work. Luke 8:3 shows where Jesus and the disciples were supported by the gifts of their followers. Acts 2:42-45: “They were devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Reverential awe came over everyone, and many wonders and miraculous signs came about by the apostles. All who believed were together and held everything in common, and they began selling their property and possessions and distributing the proceeds to everyone, as anyone had need.” Paul worked as a tentmaker by trade in Acts 18:3.
Prosperity Message has created a Slot Machine Jesus!
Paying tithes won’t save your life or make you rich, despite what any pastor says. Ephesian 2:8-9 states: “For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God; it is not from works, so that no one can boast.”
1 Peter 1:18-19 shows: “You know that from your empty way of life inherited from your ancestors you were ransomed – not by perishable things like silver or gold, but by precious blood like that of an unblemished and spotless lamb, namely Christ.”
There are pastors that will tell you outlandish things to rob you of your money God has given you. They encourage that the more you give, the more you get from God, creating the slot machine concept in the ‘New Christian’ faith.
One such pastor is Kenneth Copeland, who claimed that Adam and Eve were thrown out of the garden because they didn’t tithe. Genesis 3: clearly shows they were banished for disobedience – read for yourself.
Another prosperity pastor with odd claims to the tithe is Robert Morris. He claimed people who have problems were cursed for not paying tithes. On May 21, 2011, he offered everyone who tithed to Gateway Church for the remainder of year a money back guarantee with their tithe. If they were not fully satisfied, he would give them their money back. How? If you are giving your tithe to God, and that tithe is God’s money. How can a man promise and decide he will give it back – satisfaction guaranteed? Who is Robert Morris to give it back to you? I also wonder if there will be any refunds given in 2012.
Creflo Dollar, who says if he had his way, all members that didn’t tithe he would have them shot.
Abraham and Jacob
Many prosperity teachers use Genesis 14:18-24 to show that a mandatory tithe was paid by Abraham. Genesis 14:22, But Abram replied to the king of Sodom, “I raise my hand to the Lord, the Most High God, Creator of heaven and earth, and vow that I will take nothing belonging to you, not even a thread or the strap of a sandal. That way you can never say, ‘It is I who made Abram rich.’” Abraham gave one hundred-percent of his spoils of war (not his income) on his own accord, not under compulsion, so unlike the greedy preachers of today.
The other Genesis verse they use is Genesis 28:20-22, “Then Jacob made a vow, saying, ‘If God is with me and protects me on this journey I am taking and gives me food to eat and clothing to wear, and I return safely to my father’s home, then the Lord will become my God. Then this stone that I have set up as a sacred stone will be the house of God, and I will surely give you back a tenth of everything you give me.’” Since there was no law requiring Jacob to give a tithe, he no doubt offered it out of his heart in exchange for safe passage.
Giving a tenth was a once in a lifetime event for both Abraham and Jacob. Just because they gave a tenth, does not make it a tithe. The mandatory tithe for the Levite priests came some four hundred years after Abraham. In fact, before the Mosaic Law, the Bible does not record one single event of anyone giving tithes to God on a continual basis.
Giving was Reciprocal
Most preachers know how to collect tithes, but do not acknowledge that under the Law, every three years the priests were to open the storehouses to the needy, and the needy were to eat until they were full. Deuteronomy 14:27-29 says, “As for the Levites in your villages, you must not ignore them, for they have no allotment or inheritance along with you. At the end of every three years you must bring all the tithe of your produce, in that very year, and you must store it up in your villages. Then the Levites (because they have no allotment or inheritance with you), the resident foreigners, the orphans, and the widows of your villages may come and eat their fill so that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work you do.” How many times have you seen your church open up their treasury to the needy until they were full?
Resistance to the Lord through Selfishness
Today, there are many wicked pastors who no doubt will continue to fleece the flock. Any pastor that tells his congregation the tithe is mandatory is a crook. Remember the tithe in today’s church is the same as the issue of circumcision in Paul’s day. Titus 1:11: “…who must be silenced because they mislead whole families by teaching for dishonest gain what ought not to be taught.”
Giving Under the New Covenant
However, as Christian how should you give under the New Covenant? This is what the Bible says:
1. “Each one of you should give just as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, because God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7.
2. Don’t be like Ananias and Sapphira; give out of a pure heart. Acts 5:1-11.
3. Remember, don’t just take your pastor or anyone’s word as gold. “But examine all things; hold fast to what is good.” 1 Thessalonians 5:21.
4. Romans 12:2 says, “And do not imitate this world, but be transformed by the renovation of your minds, and you shall distinguish what is the good, acceptable and perfect will of God.”
As you look at the videos below and realize how sad the prosperity gospel has become, keep in mind 2 Corinthians 11:13-15 “For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. Therefore it is not surprising his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness, whose end will correspond to their actions.”
Remember,we should read, study and pray for spiritual guidance in all we do!