Tithe Confusion Part 4

Jews Do Not Tithe:

Jewish Rabbis today; those who should know the history of Abraham, the Mosaic Law and the teaching of the Prophets better than the Christian Church, do not collect tithes or use the tithe system to provide the resources for their ministry. They know only Levites can collect the tithe and the genealogical records were lost in the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD. Since they cannot determine who true Levites are; they use a patron system of so many dollars for each seat in their synagogues to raise funds for the support and maintenance of their ministry. Of course, the more prominent seats command a higher price, but the point remains… they do not tithe.

Truth Matters:

I find this very interesting, since Jesus was a Jew and we have our Christian roots embedded in Jewish history? I wonder how many ministers can prove biological descent from the Old Testament Priesthood of Aaron? What it brings to my attention, is the need to have our foundations grounded in real Biblical Truth rather than the traditions of man or the most widely accepted teachings of our day.

The Shocking Reality:

I am going to make a statement that will probably shock many Christians who have been in church for a long time and feel they know the Bible pretty well. My hope is to provoke the reader to study for themselves, like the Bereans of the Book of Acts.  We need to be people who rightly divide the word of truth, as the Apostle Paul encouraged his spiritual son, Timothy (2 Tim. 2:15). Search it out and see if this statement is Biblically accurate.

The tithe system; as taught by most Christian leaders, is not contained in the pages of the Bible!

 So Where Did It Come From:

Those who teach that Christians are obligated to tithe; that is giving 10% of their income to the local church for the support of the ministry, use three main platforms of reasoning. First are those who say we are still under the Law of Moses or portions of it. Second are those who say the tithe is part of the Abrahamic Covenant which pre-dates Moses. They say Abraham was a tither and the “father of faith”. Therefore, we should tithe. Finally there are those who say the tithe is what sanctifies our money and offers us a protection against the devourer (Malachi 3:8-12). Notice the tithe in this passage is “food” in the storehouse, not money.

The Early Church – A Culture of Honor:

The most obvious question then is how should we support the ministries we love and believe to be beneficial? The Early Church was financed by the free-will offerings of its people. There was no tithing system instituted at all! As a matter of fact, the Early Church supported itself the same way as the early Israelite society. When God commanded the construction of the tabernacle He did not use tithes, but free-will offerings of the people (Ex. 35:20-29). Likewise, the work of the ministry of the Early Church was financed by free-will offerings (Acts 2:44-45; 4:34-35).

The Christians of the early church were concerned about two basic things: The Apostle’s teaching and meeting each other’s needs. They understood themselves as a unique culture defined by the leadership of the Holy Spirit. Their commitments were not based on some institutional rules, but the priority of maintaining a community. The members, from the least to the greatest among them were seen through the eyes of honor… which meant they responded quickly to the needs around them. Generosity is a fruit of the Holy Spirit, because it is how love responds when it truly sees the way God sees (Mt. 25:34-40).   

 ”Honor the Lord with your possessions and with the firstfruits of all your increase: So (and God will make sure) your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.” (Prov. 3:9-10) …this is the Culture of Honor!

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