Please Read/The Tithing Issue (Many HaveBeen Brainwashed)
Please Read!!!!! If We Can Watch T.V. For Hours, Or Shut Down A Mall, I know We Can Take A Little Time Out To Read The Word Of God. You Might Not Finish Reading It All Today, But Please Read All Of It.
Please Read The Message About Tithing That I Spoke On At A Conference In 2014. Please Know Why You Are Believing What You Believe And Why You Are Doing What You Are Doing.
My Friends I just keep hearing people talk about how they are being abused and misused with the tithing topic in the church. If I asked people who attend an assembly that tithe, where did tithing come from? Who was tithing given to?, What was the purpose of tithing? Is tithing under the law or under the grace? Sad to say, many could not tell you. The same questions apply to water baptism.
"Tithing Questions" 01/18/2014
By Pastor Timothy D. Roberson
By The Grace Of God Home Bible Study
Let me say this, a detailed study of the tithe is beyond the scope of this lesson.
Many who choose tithing instead of cheerful giving says to themselves
If I teach Grace, I will lose my building, I won't be able to fulfill my vision, I won't be able to make repairs on or expand my building, I wont continue getting my fat checks, I would lose my status, I would have to reduce or eliminate TV, Cable or radio time, I will not be able to pay the bills, my ministry would be diminished, I would have to go back to house meetings, I would have to go backwards instead of forwards, and on and on it goes...There is considerable debate and disagreement among saints in the Body of Christ about tithing and giving under grace. Many denominations hold tithing as a tenet of faith and their members are often subject to unfair coercion or persuasion. Therefore to question their understanding of tithing involves not just a major doctrine, but also questions a main source of funding for their local assembly. Rather than be concerned with finance as such, we should focus on the truth of Scripture.
Those Who Don’t Rightly Divide Will Use Other Scriptures That Are Biblical and Scriptural But Is Not Dispensational. Many try to claim that believers are obligated to tithe because the concept of tithing preceded the law based on Abraham’s tithe.
Origin Of The Tithe
In Genesis 14 we have the first reference to tithing and this pre-dates the Mosaic Law. After rescuing his nephew Lot from the alliance of the kings with Chedorlaomer he gave Melchizedek, king of Salem a tenth of everything that he plundered. It was from the spoils of war. That was what the tithe came from. Abraham did not tithe from his personal possessions but the spoils of war. A tithe was on what you earned, it was from your vocation (Lev. 27:30; Deut. 14:22-23,28; 2 Chron.31:5-6.) The king of Sodom even offered Abram the goods “Now the king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the persons, and take the goods for yourself.” (Gen. 14:21) Abram’s reply v.22-23, “That I will take nothing, from a thread to a sandal strap, and that I will not take anything that is yours, lest you should say, 'I have made Abram rich'—”except only what the young men have eaten, and the portion of the men who went with me: Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre; let them take their portion.” The idea of tithing to get something more by Abraham is not supported, he already had the goods. He gave them back. Keep in mind Abraham’s tithe was a one-time “payment,” made of his own freewill from excess booty gained in war (Genesis 14:20). We have no indication that he ever did it again nor that his gift was intended to be normative for others, much less repeated on a weekly basis.
This event is NOT a tithe by command but a free will offering. Abraham was never taught or instructed by God to give a tenth, nor did he discover the law of tithing. This was a one time only event in his life. Abraham is recorded giving this tithe only ONCE in his lifetime. Abraham had not tithed of his own property or income, though at this time he was very wealthy and could do so He did not keep going back to Melchizedek to give. The idea of tithing to get something more by Abraham is not supported, he already had the goods. He gave them back. This has nothing in common with the teaching of seed faith giving, offering what you do not have, or that you should give ten percent of your gross weekly income to anointed men or ministries for God’s blessings to come to you. If Abraham was being blessed through the tithing system, as some claim, why did he do this only once? He never repeated it again for the rest of his life, and neither did he teach this to any of his sons. According to the Bible tithing does not become a command until Moses’ time. This is ignored by today’s lawful tithers. Instead it is replaced by clever teaching on Abraham’s tithe to make it a requirement for the church.
When Abraham’s tithe doesn’t work, they will come with Jacob.
During this time, they are telling the saints they are under Grace.
Jacob’s Tithe. The next person who tithed in the Old Testament was Jacob, the son of Isaac (the son of Abraham). Genesis 28: 20: ”And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, So that I come again to my father’s house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.” Does Jacob making a vow to God to give a tenth prove that tithing was practiced before Moses? NO. Jacob vowed a vow to God for safe passage, for food and clothing and this promise was conditional. If Jacob had to make a vow, then that shows that tithing was not a requirement by God. What would that look like today ( if I worked for the CEO of a Cadillac Dealership, You know the one who signs the checks and I said to him or her, “I’ve give you a tenth of my check that I earn from you, wash your car and mow your lawn if you let me get the keys to one of those cadillacs out there, and let me drive it to my family reunion and take my children to Disney World.” If saints are to be practicing tithing today because of Abraham then we are also obligated to keep everything that occurred before the law! Circumcision was given to Abraham before it was incorporated in the Law of Moses. Abraham and Jacob were circumcised because God told them to. By the same standard of tithing, if circumcision was practiced before the Law then circumcision should be practiced after the Law.
What Was The Purpose Of The Tithe?
The primary reason why many teach that giving 10% of your gross income is God’s command comes from a basic misunderstanding of what tithing really was. “tithes” commanded in the Law of Moses served as taxes to support various functions of the nation of Israel – supporting the government officials (Levites), funding the national religious ceremonies and festivals, and providing for the needy (widows, orphans and strangers).
What Is A Biblical Tithe? The Hebrew and Greek words for “tithe” both simply mean “a tenth.”
The issue of tithing has been greatly confused, however, by some who misunderstand the nature of the Old Testament tithes. Tithes were not primarily gifts to God, but taxes for funding the national budget in Israel. The total giving required of the Israelites was not 10 percent, but well over 20 percent. All the tithe was used to operate the nation. One of the very great dangers of churches demanding tithes is the accompanying perceived threat or fear that acceptance by God depends on the amount of money given. That acceptance is something money cannot buy. Often pastors of churches who tithe are very wealthy people - at the expense of their congregations, yet they often claim that they are wealthy because they have been blessed by God! Yet Paul could say, "I will very gladly spend for you everything I have and expend myself as well......I have not been a burden to you." (2 Corinthians 12:16).
After God delivered Israel from Egypt, He set apart the entire tribe of Levi for priestly service to the nation. When God apportioned the promised land among the Israelites, the tribe of Levi had no share of the land but received one-tenth of all the produce of the land from the other tribes instead. The purpose for the tithe was two-fold. First, it was an act of worship; an act of giving back to God. Secondly, it was to provide for the priests, the Levites. The Levites were the only ones who could enter the holy of holies, the inner sanctuary. They were the ones who prayed for the congregation and presented their offerings before God. Leviticus 27:30, 32 And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord's: it is holy unto the Lord. And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord.
Tithe On The Increase
Deut.14:22 Thou shalt truly tithe all the increase of thy seed, that the field bringeth forth year by year.
Israelite was not commanded to tithe on everything he obtained and used throughout the year, but only on his increase at the end of the year. The same thing is true with a business in that a certain amount of the income is consumed in maintaining the operation. It is notable how the modern tithe teachers expect the ordinary working man to fork over 10% of his every paycheck before his bills or his taxes are paid. What kind of sense does it make when you don’t know what the electric bill, water bill, food, children needs, and all the other things that goes into taking care of your family. Sad but true, some saints will fork over big chunks of their income to the local assembly or to the man behind the pulpit, while their family go without. Paul says in 1 Timothy 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
Tithe On The Tenth Animal
Some ministers commonly teach that the tithe is God’s and that he must get his money first. But the Bible says it is the tenth animal (the last one) that passes under the rod that is God’s, not the first. You often hear proponents of the tithe say that surely Christians would do no less than what Jews did in the Old Testament, as if every Israelite gave ten percent of his income. A detailed study of the tithe is beyond the scope of this lesson, but the idea that each Israelite gave ten percent of his income (and therefore each saint should do likewise) is far from the truth. For example, an Israelite who had fewer than ten cattle born to him in a year did not have to tithe on them because the requirement stated that only the tenth animal that passed under the rod was to be tithed (Lev. 27:32). Apply that to today from a check standpoint; some people get a check weekly, some get a check bi-weekly, some get a check monthly. So, with every tenth check, a person paid weekly would tithe around 5 times in a year instead of 48 times off the checks they receive from their employer. A person paid bi-weekly would tithe 2 times in a year instead of 26 and a person paid monthly would tithe 1 time in a year instead of 12. Is this happening today? No.
What Products Were Tithed?
Many people have been hasty in assuming that all the income earned by the Israelites was subject to the laws of tithing. This was not the case. There were only two types of income that were tithable: one was from agricultural production. "All the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s" (Leviticus 27:30). This meant that a tenth of all agricultural produce of the land of Israel, whether fruits or vegetables, had to be tithed. The second type of tithable income was the increase of animals. "All the tithe of the herd or flock, whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord" (Leviticus 27:32). Only these two specific income producers were subject to the tithe.
There is only one exception to this rule. Leviticus 27:31 reads: "If a man will redeem ought of his tithe, he shall add unto it the fifth part thereof." In other words, if a man for various reasons did not wish to pay his tithe in kind (and he wished to give money as a substitute), he was penalized a fifth part. Such a law was obviously not intended to encourage payment of the tithe in money. Monetary redemption, on the other hand, was not allowed for the tithe of animals. Moses declared: "It shall not be redeemed" (Leviticus 27: 33). This means that the tithing law of the Bible prohibited cattle ranchers from paying money at all. They were required to give the tenth animal no matter if they wanted to keep it for some reason to themselves.
Welfare Tithe(This third tithe can be distinguished from the previous two by the fact that it was offered every third year)
Every third year, this tithe was to be kept in the local towns (wherever the person tithing lived) for "the Levite, (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee,) and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, which are within thy gates" (Deuteronomy 14:28-29). This is restated in Deuteronomy 26:12-13.The previous tithes were to be given either every year or during feasts; this third tithe was to be offered every third year.
From these passages, it should be noted that if saints in the Body of Christ wish to "tithe" according to the Bible, they should be tithing of all they have, giving two tithes, and making sure that every third year, another tithe goes to support the strangers, fatherless, and widows in their town, as well as their pastor and ministers. However, tithing is not commanded for saints in the Dispensation Of Grace in any passage of the Bible.
Who Did Not Tithe?
Since farmers and ranchers were responsible for paying the tithe, we now come to an equally important question: Who was not required to tithe? It is often surprising to people to find that a large segment of people in Israel did not tithe! The owner of a farm had to tithe, but his hired hands were exempt. Was a hired hand required to tithe on his salary? Not at all! There was no law that required a tenth of one’s salary to be tithed (which was earned for services rendered). Only the crops and animals of those who owned them were subject to the tithe. After all, the crops and the animals did not belong to the hired hand and only the increase from one’s land or animals was subject to the tithe. And note this; fishermen did not tithe, though this industry is mentioned in the law (Leviticus 11:9–12). Likewise, the mining industry is referred to (Deuteronomy 8:9), but the tithe of minerals extracted from the earth was never called for to be included in the tithe. The lumber business is mentioned (1 Kings 5:7–12) and construction work on buildings (1 Kings 5:13–18) but tithes were not extracted from people who worked in those trades. The same held true for those earning an income from weaving, handicrafts, or from any form of manufacturing or merchandising. They all were immune from tithing including all those in the military and government workers. Although the Levites were commanded to pay a tenth of the tithe they received from the farmers and ranchers to the Priests, those Priests themselves were totally exempt from paying any tithe. To make it plain and simple, only the owners of farms and flocks were required to tithe. Indeed, the Israelite who had fewer than ten cattle did not have to tithe on nine of them because the requirement stated that only the tenth animal that passed under the rod was to be tithed (Leviticus 27:32).
Who Received the Tithe?
God ordained the Levites to be the ones to whom the tithe was paid (Numbers 18:21). They were one of the 12 tribes of Israel to whom no inheritance was given in the land. The Lord Himself and the tithes of the children of Israel was their inheritance. It was used for the service of the tabernacle (later the temple) (Numbers 18:20-28). In the entire Bible, the tithe is only food, and was used to provide food for the Levites and Levite Temple Priests. Only the crops and animals of those who owned them were subject to the tithe. After all, the crops and the animals did not belong to the hired hands and only the increase from one’s land or animals was subject to the tithe. Tithes, a tenth of the land's crops production, were property of the Lord, to be used for the widows, the fatherless, and the stranger in the land - not just for the priests' sole usage. Tithes were supposed to be stored in a place commanded by God to relieve those in need as well as to rejoice when the families and servants of the contributors were to eat in celebration from the tithed foods, together with the priests. Deuteronomy 14:28-29 states in verse 28, At the end of three years thou shalt bring forth all the tithe of thine increase the same year, and shalt lay it up within thy gates; and in verse 29: And the Levite, (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee,) and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, which are within thy gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; that the LORD thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hand which thou doest.
Every third year, the tithe was to put aside by those who paid tithes, and kept by them for use by the less fortunate. It was not to be consumed by the Levites alone. The third-year tithe was to be used to feed wandering Levites, strangers, orphans, and widows.
Deuteronomy 12:5-6,11 tells us that the tithe was to be brought to "the place the Lord your God will choose from among all your tribes to put His Name their for His dwelling" (Deut. 12:5). Deuteronomy 12:17-28 continues along this line of thought, then speaking of the tithe being eaten. Specifically, verses 17 and 18 say:
"Thou mayest not eat within thy gates the tithe of thy corn, or of thy wine, or of thy oil, or the firstlings of thy herds or of thy flock, nor any of thy vows which thou vowest, nor thy freewill offerings, or heave offering of thine hand: But thou must eat them before the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates: and thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God in all that thou puttest thine hands unto."
Seeing as this is addressing the entire nation of Israel (vs. 12 makes that clear - note that the list includes the Levites, hence it is not directed toward the Levites alone), it is apparently a second tithe, since the first tithe was to be given entirely to the Levites. Deuteronomy 14:22-27 expands upon this concept by commanding the people to "eat before the LORD thy God, in the place which he shall choose to place his name there, the tithe of thy corn, of thy wine, and of thine oil, and the firstlings of thy herds and of thy flocks" (Deut. 14:23). The purpose of doing this? "...that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always" (Deut. 14:23)
Continuing in this context, if the person could not get to the place "which the LORD thy God shall choose to set his name there" (Deut. 14:24), then the person was to convert the tithe to money and take the money "unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose" (Deut. 14:25). Once there, the person is commanded to buy "whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul desireth" (Deut. 14:26), and again, to eat it there before the Lord. This again is evidence against this being the first tithe, as it is not given explicitly and completely to the Levites.
Abuse of Malachi 3:8-10
This use of the Malachi passage is a good example of Scripture being taken out of its historical and dispensational context. “This whole nation” in verse 9 is the backslidden nation of Israel, NOT the present day church which is the Body of Christ (Malachi 1:1; 3:6). They were under the law of Moses as a system of conditional blessing. It was especially pointed to the Priests of Israel. Israel was completely backslidden, the Priests were NOT doing their jobs, the sacrifices were polluted and rejected by God and the people were completely neglecting proper marriage laws and the maintenance and restoration of the House of God. There was no acceptable sacrifices being given or sacrificed. "Malachi 1:6 A son honoureth his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honour? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name. And ye say, Wherein have we despised thy name? God was angry with the Priests of Israel. Malachi 2:1 And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you. (KJV)Malachi 2:7 For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of the LORD of hosts. Many tithing Christians will tithe out of fear of the misappropriated "Malachi Curse" ignoring the fact their neighbor is in need. These saints are thinking that when they get their "windfall" from tithing, they will then help the needy. . Believers today are not under the law but under grace (Romans 6:14). As such we have already been blessed by God with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ (Ephesians 1:3) and are under a system of unconditional blessing with grace on the throne (Romans 5:21).
Money, many will say, money was not around.
The Second Tithe Could Be Exchanged for Money and Then Be Used to Buy Strong Drink. Deuteronomy 14:24, And if the way is too long for you, so that you are not able to carry it; or, if the place is too far from you, which the LORD your God shall choose to set his name there, when the LORD your God has blessed you; 14:25, Then shall you turn it into money, and bind up the money in your hand, and shall go to the place which the LORD your God shall choose; 14:26, And you shall spend that money for whatsoever your soul lusts after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever your soul desires; and you shall eat there before the LORD your God, and you shall rejoice, you, and your household. Since carrying the food tithe was a physical burden when one lived too far from the place God chose; the aforementioned scripture also proves that food the tithes were not money but that the second tithe could be exchanged for money which would not create a burden!
Windows Of Heavens
Malachi 3:10 clearly states, "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. God wasn't promising BMW, Fat Bank Accounts, Huge Mansions And Anything Your heart desire in this verse. He was promising RAIN! This is why God continued in Malachi 3:11 by saying, "And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts". You see, the Israelites inheritance was conditional also. If they obeyed God's commandments, He would continue to pour rain from the windows of heaven and their seeds would be blessed. If they disobeyed God's commandments, he would shut up the windows of heaven and stop the rain, causing a drought. Most people have been taught that this passage means, to the individual tither: I will have more blessings that I can possibly use. There will be no diminishing of my increase. I will be so rich that others will call me blessed. These blessings are usually taught as being "automatic" [like a formula] to the faithful tither. Yet in most neighborhoods, you can drive down the street and you can't tell any difference between the prosperity of the tithing believer on one side of the street and the non-tithing sinner who lives on the other side of the street. That is what 2nd Chronicle 7:13-14 is talking about. Rain, the Children of Israel lived and died off their land and they needed God’s rain. The specific blessing that He was promising to send through the "open windows of heaven" to the nation of Israel was rain. The literal blessing that God wanted to pour out through the open windows of heaven was RAIN. This was primarily an agricultural society, and rain was a fundamental necessity for their prosperity. Had they repented and brought in all of the tithes and offerings with a true and willing heart, God would have poured down rain for their crops.
Malachi 3:8-10 was mandatory and carried with it blessings and curses:
Blessings: Leviticus 26:3,4 (Rain), Deuteronomy 28:1,8,12 (Rain)If the nation of Israel followed out with God’s commandments, they would receive their blessing which was rain. (Their livelihood depended on the rain).
Curses: Leviticus 26:19,20, (No Rain) Deut: 28: 23,24 (No Rain)
in Lev 26:14,19,20,29: Deut 28: 53, 57, If the nation of Israel didn’t follow out with God’s commandments, they receive curses. God said they would resort to Cannibalism is they disobeyed. Look at 2nd Kings 6:26-29 result of Nation of Israel Disobedience. The extreme conditions had brought on Cannibalism. We as saints should be glad we are under Grace.
Giving Under Grace
Paul the Apostle to the Gentiles for this present dispensation of Grace does not even mention tithing but says a great deal about Christian giving. Romans 15:25,26; 1st Corinthians 9:7-14; 16:1-3; and 2nd Corinthians, Chapters 8 and 9; Galatians 6:6-10; Philippians 4:10-19; 1st Timothy 5:918. 1st Corinthians 9:6 and 7 make it clear that the more generously we “sow” with the right attitude that the more abundantly we will reap. “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2nd Corinthians 9:7). For some believers who do not earn much, giving generously may not mean a large amount. For others, it may mean millions of dollars, and far more than 10%. Each saint’s situation is different and that is why God does not prescribe specific amounts that we should give but allows us to make our own decisions. Remember, we are “fellow laborers” with Him, and He loves to work with us in determining how much and to whom we should give, and He loves to bless us with more so that we can give more. That kind of giving makes for an exciting element of the saint’s life. To insist on tithing in the age of grace is to mix law and grace and encourage trust in human works. Saints are subject to the law of Christ (1st Corinthians 9:21; Galatians 6:2) and the standard for how much we give is not an amount set by some external law. If a set amount is laid down for believers to give, it becomes a legal and external matter, rather than a matter of the individual’s conscience and the leading of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:1, 18, 25). A Christian should give a proportion based on what one has, one’s own needs, and on the needs of others including the ministry of the local church and the work of the ministry.
The Apostle Paul did say, “Each one should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2nd Corinthians 9:7). But this begs the question; “How and why should I want to give?” Paul answers this for us in the surrounding passage: he presses the Corinthians to give by talking about the giving of others like the Macedonians, who gave generously with great joy despite their own poverty and suffering (2nd Corinthians 8:1-5).
The Apostle Paul then lays down his aces in 2nd Corinthians 8:9: “You know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, who for our sakes became poor so that we by His poverty might become rich”. He then argues that we who have been given much should give generously since this was God’s design (2nd Corinthians 8:14). In 2nd Corinthians 9:9, which quotes Psalm 112:9, it is stated that God can never be out-given, for He will ensure we reap what we sow (2 Corinthians 9:8).
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By The Grace Of God Home Bible Study
PROSPERITY GOSPEL (A FALSE TEACHING ORCHESTRATED BY SATAN)
4-1-15 PROSPERITY GOSPEL ( A FALSE TEACHING)FALSE PREACHERS TELL SO MANY TO SOW YOUR WATER BILL OR ELECTRIC BILL MONEY INTO MY MINISTRY AND GOD WILL GIVE YOU A BLESSING!!!! SOW A $100.00, $500.00, OR $1000.00 SEED AND YOU WILL RECEIVE FINANCIAL BLESSINGS LIKE RIVERS OF WATERS!!!
MY FRIENDS, YOU WILL ALSO BE WITHOUT WATER AND LIGHTS!!! DON’T BE DECEIVED!!!!PLEASE WAKE UP, THEY DO NOT CARE IF YOU DON’T HAVE FOOD ON YOUR TABLE!!!!
PROSPERITY GOSPEL (A FALSE TEACHING)
By Pastor Timothy D. Roberson
By The Grace Of God Home Bible Study
CONTINUING TO GET RICH OFF THE POOR AND BRAINWASHED (SATAN’S MINISTERS)
Proverbs 8:10-11 “Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold. For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it.” Materialism has overcome a large percentage of Christians in the Body of Christ. Many Christians, preachers in particular, like to drive Cadillacs and Lincolns, and other luxury cars, as if a luxury car is evidence of God’s blessings, and somehow validates their ministry. That’s distorted thinking from Satan my friends. Proverbs 30:7-9 “Two things have I required of thee; deny me them not before I die: Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the Lord? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.” This passage contains very important truth that is being totally overlooked, not only by the prosperity preachers but also by many saints in the Body of Christ. King Solomon wrote this passage here in Proverbs 30:7-9. He understood the corrupting influence of wealth; therefore, he knew that people can have too much wealth. Solomon knew that wealth deceives people into becoming materialistic; it deceives people into depending on it for security rather than God.
COVET: To covet something means that we desire to have it. It suggests that we’re not content with what we have, that we’re not fully satisfied with the Lord and with what He has given us, and that we need something else in order to satisfy us. To desire (what belongs to another) inordinately ( exceeding reasonable limits). To want (something that you do not have) very much. So seeing this definition of the term, we see that so many of us in the Church are guilty of covetousness –of desiring a better car, a better house, a larger bank account, of increasing our material worth. It is truly sin in God’s sight.(1st Timothy 6:6). “But godliness with contentment is great gain.
First of all, let us make it absolutely clear: It’s not a sin to have a large income and be financially prosperous in this world. My friends let us never make the mistake of thinking that because someone has a large income that they are in sin. It is easy to judge such people and be wrong because even though we may know that they receive a lot of money, we don’t always know what they are doing with all that money. Apostle Paul said to the young preacher Timothy, “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded; nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life” (1 Tim. 6:17-19). Paul doesn’t tell him to outright rebuke those who are rich just because they are rich, since it’s not a sin in itself to be rich, but he tells Timothy to command them not to be proud because of their riches, not to trust in their riches. In the Body of Christ, we will have those who are rich or well off.
The Word of God encourage good works and generous giving with their finances, so they can be generous with what they have and help the poor, the widows and orphans, and give to those in need, and promote the work of the ministry. But this message is about the misuse of God’s Word to get rich and abuse saints in the Body of Christ. Jesus spoke on money and material things often, but the thing that prosperity preachers won’t tell you is that whenever He spoke of it He almost always spoke against it, that is, against desiring it in any way. This is because the Lord Jesus knew that “the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil” (1 Tim. 6:10). He knew that money competes for the heart and affection and devotion of man in a way that no other thing does and therefore, He constantly warned that it was an imminent trap waiting to snare the soul of any man at any moment. He knew that the desire for money and worldly things would cause a great many of His professing followers to stumble and fall. My friends do not be duped into thinking that if you give to these preachers, God will make you rich enough to give lots of money to them and also have plenty of money for yourself, so you can buy a speed-boat, a BMW, and a big nice home. There are many preachers and teachers in this movement who are motivated by greed, but many local pastors who are teaching the prosperity gospel are just deceived because they want the false teaching to be true.
Many times we hold to traditions, mindsets, or beliefs that aren’t Scriptural, and when we do, there comes a time when God is faithful to confront us with truth and bring us correction. Whether we are obedient to the Lord or not, and whether we will continue to walk with God or not, is largely determined on how we respond to the correction He gives us. It is important to realize that He doesn’t correct us because He wants to rub our errors and misguided teachings in our faces, but because He loves us and wants us to walk in truth. When we are confronted with the Word of God rightly divided and it teaches us that we are in error on some point, then we need to humble ourselves, and correct our views. Colossians 3:2 “Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” If we are laying up financial abundance for ourselves on earth for the purpose of enjoying ourselves in this world then we are in disobedience. 2nd Corinthians 4:18 says “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” Lets look at what‘s happening in the Body of Christ. The poor and afflicted members aren’t shown as much favor as those members who are wealthy and always have everything going well for them. And this false teaching of prosperity gospel is shaming the poor man and making him think that he must be in sin, not because there is actually sin in his life, but because of his poverty. And those churches that are large and wealthy are seen as particularly blessed, while those churches that are small and struggling are seen as not so blessed.
Yet, this is what these prosperity preachers are doing. They are living extravagant lives, living in luxury, self-indulgence, buying the most expensive hotel suites, driving in the most expensive luxury cars, living in the most lavish multi-million dollar homes, feasting on most expensive dinners as a lifestyle. They are in clear disobedience to the Word of God by being friends of the world: “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” (Jam. 4:4). It is sad but true that many in the Body of Christ show favoritism to the wealthy and treat the poor as if they’re not as worthy of respect and honor. They uplift the rich by giving them the best seats in the church but shaming the poor by making them sit on the floor or give up their seat to the rich. It’s sad that many honor the rich but shame the poor. Please wake up and see what this false teaching of prosperity gospel is doing. It honors the rich as if they’re blessed by the Lord and it shames the poor as if they’re not blessed and treats them like they aren’t living right or don’t have enough faith to get out of their poverty. This false teaching mocks the poor by saying it’s their own fault and lack of faith that causes them to be poor. This “gospel” of prosperity is a rotten abomination in the eyes of the God whose word says, “Whoever mocks the poor reproaches his Maker” (Pro. 17:5).
Frequently the impression is given which ultimately makes people think, “God wants me to have more money”. And so believers start praying and asking God for more financial prosperity and even begin to seek after increasing their economic status in this world. Spreading this false teaching of prosperity gospel has become a very profitable business for Satan’s ministers. It is affording them the opportunity to live in mansions, own private jets, take exotic trips, relax in hotel rooms that cost thousands per night, and even own second and third homes. The prosperity gospel (False Teaching) goes by many names: Word of Faith, Health and Wealth, Name It and Claim It. These false teachers teach that God provides rewards, including personal happiness, financial wealth and physical health, for believers who have sufficient faith. My friends do not believe this false teaching, the Word of God points out in the Bible that Christians are assured persecution (2 Tim. 3:12) and suffering (Acts 9:16). Romans 8:18 “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” These false preachers and teachers take scripture and twist it. These false teachers will tell you that if you “Give $10, you will receive a $1,000; give $1,000 and receive $100,000. Many who are weak in the Word of God buy right into these scams and send their utility bill money in the mail or give their money for food to these false preachers and teachers. This false teaching is one of the biggest hindrance to the spiritual growth of Christians in the Body of Christ. It is one of the most dangerous and ruinous false teachings in the Church today; it is not just harmful, destructive, and dangerous, it is the opposite of the true gospel and, therefore, an evil lie from the pit of Hell.
“Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience” (Col. 3:5-6). Here the sin of covetousness is grouped in the same level with fornication, with lascivious living and practicing immorality. We are commanded to mortify, or put to death, any desire within us that we find desiring to covet anything. It doesn’t matter if someone calls themselves a “Christian”, it doesn’t matter if someone is a preacher, it doesn’t matter if they have a large ministry and many people like them; if they are given over to a covetous heart they will held accountable. God hates covetousness just as much as He hates fornication and murder. Those who desire to increase their material worth and desire the things of this world will fall into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which will drown them in destruction and perdition. Many Christians look up to these famous preachers with huge ministries who are living in luxury and extravagant abundance, who openly say that they want more money and continually ask their congregation and audiences to give them money. Many Christians look up to them as great men of God, but the true God of Heaven is not pleased with their behaviors and sinful acts.
A particularly enlightening Scripture on this subject is found in Hebrews 13:5: “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” It commands us to have our conduct free from desiring money or material things, and on the flipside commands us to “be content with what you have”. In other words, we are either one or the other; we are either content with what we have, or we are covetous. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Eph. 1:3). This is a much greater deal than mere temporary, physical riches on earth. Our lives are passing away on this earth and will soon be gone. We’ll be in eternity where only that which is eternal will remain. Eternal riches are truly what are important. What we really need to focus on receiving is not earthly prosperity, but heavenly, and to be rich in all spiritual things in Christ Jesus. What a shame to put so much trust in money, rather than God to supply our needs. But the fact of the matter is, when we give money for the purpose of getting lots of money back, which is the whole doctrine of the prosperity preachers, then we are giving with wrong motives
Please Read!!!! Tithing Part II/Please Don't Spill Your Coffee Or Have A Panic Attack While Reading This Message, But It Is The Truth If You Study It. Not Read But Study!!!
By Pastor Timothy D. Roberson
By The Grace Of God Home Bible Study
Tithing Part II/The tithe as taught by most Christian denominations as being 10 per cent of gross or net income is not contained on the pages of the Bible! Where did they get gross income from or the net income? Check your bibles and let me know when you find gross income or net income in the bible. Remember tithes were not money but food. Please Read!!! Family MUST come first, church second! Like it or not, that is Bible (1st Timothy 5:8)!
Please Read!!! Many Times People Have Not Taken The Time To Really Study The Scriptures For Themselves. They Have Relied On Man For Their Personal Growth.
Part II On Tithing
Once You Have Read And Studied These Messages On Tithing And You Want To Discuss Them, Please Feel Free To Contact Me. But First Make Sure You Have Studied And Read Them Carefully.
False teaching has wounded many Christians' view of giving. They either see giving as legalistic tithing, or as a way to get, or as a way to alleviate guilt. Also, many are afraid to give except to ministries producing concrete results as judged by man's standards. And we have learned that God instead wants us to give to those who faithfully teach Truth, and to the poor in the church, and to our neighbor in need; and we are to do so voluntarily, freely, and cheerfully. We are to give as we determine according to our ability. Our ability may be more than our old patterns of thinking allowed, especially when we consider the luxuries we in our society heap upon ourselves with the excuse that we "need them." To get over our old ways of thinking about giving, we will need to seek God's help in prayer and study the Bible the way God instructs us to by rightly dividing the Word of Truth. Today, we are NOT commanded to tithe or give to any specific church or denomination. There is NO temple! There is NO tribe of Levi! We are NOT under ceremonial law as were the Old Testament Jews. There is NO storehouse. We are to give as God hath "prospered" us! Where do we give? To a local church if it's a soul-winning, Bible-preaching church where the Word of Truth is being rightly divided. We can give directly to the poor, or to a trustworthy missionary who isn't just making a living. We can give to many causes, but our primary giving should be to Bible-preaching, soul-winning churches who are standing on the Word of Truth rightly divided.
WE ARE NOT COMMANDED TO TITHE 10%
We are not commanded to give a 10% tithe. I realize I just made you spill your coffee if you are a pastor, church leader or a faithful tither, but it is nevertheless true! I use to believe in a 10% tithe (as I was taught in church) until The Lord open my eyes up to the Word of God rightly divided. There was a time in my life when I faithfully was scratching to try and give my 10%. I was putting everything I had into the offering plate while thinking about how I was going to put gas in my car to go to work. And don't ever let anyone errantly tell you that if you know how to pray that your bills will be paid. That is wicked to tell anybody that. It is wrong to teach someone that if they know how to pray that God would provide for their college tuition, debts owed or bills due. Family men often CANNOT afford to give very much (if anything at all). I believe it is wrong for a working family man to be pressured by a pastor to tithe, when that family man can barely afford to pay his own bills. Too many preachers are only thinking about themselves. Family MUST come first, church second! Like it or not, that is Bible (1st Timothy 5:8)! I've known people to give money to a ministry even when they couldn't pay their own bills. Do you know what happened? They went further into financial trouble for not paying their bills. There are many humble believers with very little income for whom a tenth would be too much to give. There are others whom God has blessed in such a wonderful way that they could easily give even as much as the government will allow for deductions. There are those who have an income such that they could give that to the Lord, but we find very few who are giving like that.
The Local Assembly Is Not The Storehouse
"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse." There are many churches and some denominations which have said that the storehouse is the local church or the denomination. Frankly, just as the tithe is not for the church today, neither is the storehouse. The storehouse was a part of the temple. There were many buildings around the temple which were storerooms. When people brought their tithe, it was stored away in these storerooms. When Nehemiah came back to Jerusalem (sometime before the time of Malachi), he found Tobiah, the enemy of God, living in one of the storerooms that had been cleaned out. It had been cleaned out because the people were not giving generously, and they had made an apartment out of it for Tobiah! But Nehemiah cleaned up the place. He took Tobiah’s things and pitched them out the window and told him to get out of town. Then the people began to bring their offerings to fill up the storeroom again (see Nehemiah 13:4–9)There is no such thing today as that which is called 'storehouse giving.' That’s not quite the way we give, because Israel’s giving was in the form of produce. In fact, if you will notice the law concerning the offerings, God gave a certain part of the animal to the priests, and He always said that they were to eat it right there. They didn’t have any refrigerators, any kind of icebox, in which to freeze the meat. In that warm climate the meat would have gone bad in a hurry, and so God told them to eat it right there. But the other produce was stored until it was needed
Some people think that Christian giving in the Body of Christ is equivalent of Old Testament tithing, but this is not correct. Why? Because tithing and giving are not related. the ancient Jews had to tithe by law. Tithing was not giving; it was paying, much as we pay our taxes. The Israelites no more thought of tithing as giving a gift than we think of income tax as giving a gift. It is something we have to pay by law. As we have seen, Christians are not obliged to tithe. Christians are under the Dispensation Of Grace, not the Old Covenant, and the law of the tithe is not part of the Dispensation Of Grace. There were, however, gifts in the Old Testament. For example, we read of freewill offerings (see Leviticus 22). But even with these, the law tightly prescribed when and how they were to be given.
The Three Common Wrong Motivators To Give
1) Tithing: When Christians believe that they must truly tithe, they are acting on the wrong motivation. As already explained, tithing has nothing to do with Christian giving. True Christian giving is something only born again Christians can do. If someone has been telling you to tithe, don't believe it. If you have been telling people to tithe, stop.
Wrong Motivator/Give To Get
2) Give to Get: No doubt you have heard it before: Donate and be blessed. You will be blessed for your giving. You cannot out give God, so the more you give, the more you will get. When you give, you will receive showers of blessings. The way in which this is presented is usually a complete distortion of the biblical teaching. Many people are looking for what is often termed "a financial miracle," so they turn to the religious version of the get rich quick scheme.
Wrong Motivator/Giving To Get Rid Of Sins Or Pay For Grace
3) Giving to get rid of sins or pay for grace: Have you ever been made to feel that you can pay for your sins or buy your way into God's favor by giving to a certain ministry? Apparently, it is easy for many ministries to succumb to the temptation to imply to their donors that a person's giving reflects his standing before God. If we give, we gain favor with God. If we don't, we may fall from grace. But anyone who knows the definition of grace—that it is something freely given—knows that this cannot be. We cannot earn what is freely given. It can be amazing how carelessly people in responsible positions in Christian organizations can treat grace. The leadership needs to motivate people to give. Guilt is a powerful motivator. The leadership makes people feel their sins for not contributing enough. So they say things like, "I don't know how anyone who is saved can give so little," or "Surely, if the Holy Spirit were living in you, you would be giving more." Or, and perhaps this is the king of all money manipulators among Christian groups, "God did so much for you. Won't you pay Him back even a little by sending your contribution today.