Will A Man Rob God?

On any given Sunday, there will be Pastor’s who will stand behind the pulpit and will preach a well-known message out of the 3rd Chapter of the last book of the Old Testament, Malachi.

“Will a man ROB GOD?,” will boom through the air with emphasis on ‘rob God.’ Many preacher’s will put the emphasis on ‘rob God’ to instill an automatic guilt into the very minds of the hearer. It causes the automatic cringing of the people the preacher wants to put in a spirit of condemnation.

“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.”

Every single believer in the congregation who is not placing money in a tithe envelope and placing it in the offering plate is automatically pointed out by this man, (figuratively) who is supposed to be speaking for God, as being robbers and are therefore under a curse which will NEVER BE LIFTED as long as one is disobedient to God.

This is why it is important for each and every person who has been adopted into the family of God by faith in the substitutionary blood of Jesus Christ on the cruel cross of Calvary to “Study to shew thyself approved unto God a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth. Jesus said in John 17 during His prayer to His Father acknowledging all that the Father gave Him these wonderful words that we all need to embrace and realize that He wants us to study diligently; “Sanctify them through Thy Truth; Thy Word is Truth.”

Once we learn that it is God’s Holy Word that sanctifies, that sets us apart from the world, that separates us from false teachings, then we have a responsibility to study that Word and begin to apply its truths to our walk. When we walk according to the Word of God, we will not be so easily swayed by preachers who do not study as they should.

Oh, but the preacher has doctorates given him by a famous seminary that has turned out many wonderful men of God! Don’t be fooled, Brethren. The only thing that will turn out a wonderful man of God are the Word of God and the God of the Word..

The best place to go to learn who God is and what He expects of man is to the very Word of God… The Holy Bible.

In the accusation of man robbing God in today’s Christian community, a charge is generally given out of Malachi that not only was not speaking of money, but it was not speaking of the Gentile nations at all.

The Gentile nations were not required to tithe according to God’s Word.

Let’s begin to look into the passage and learn what God is truly addressing when the prophet Malachi said “Will a man rob God? 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.”
First off, we must address who is being spoken to in the passage. It will shock many to realize that it was to the Priest’s of Israel.

Look at Malachi 2:1:

And now, O ye Priest’s, this commandment is for you.

Now, look at Malachi 3:5:

And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts.

Clearly, God is speaking about specific people here that are doing the robbing! The Priest’s who oppress or defraud the working class, who defraud the widows, the orphans, and turn aside the stranger from his right. To see exactly what is meant here since it is speaking of tithes, we must go into the Book of Deuteronomy:

Deuteronomy 14:22-29 Thou shalt truly tithe all the increase of thy seed, that the field bringeth forth year by year. And thou shalt 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; that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always. And if the way be too long for thee, so that thou art not able to carry it; or if the place be too far from thee, which the LORD thy God shall choose to set his name there, when the LORD thy God hath blessed thee: Then shalt thou turn it into money, and bind up the money in thine hand, and shalt go unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose: And thou shalt bestow that money for whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul desireth: and thou shalt eat there before the LORD thy God, and thou shalt rejoice, thou, and thine household, And the Levite that is within thy gates; thou shalt not forsake him; for he hath no part nor inheritance with thee. 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 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.

Here, we learn more than just one wonderful truth.

1. We learn that the tithe was “all the increase of thy seed, (agricultural produce) that the field bringeth forth year by year.” The tithe was a yearly event, not weekly.
2. We learn that the tithe was to be eaten.
3. We learn that the purpose of the tithe is that the children of Israel learn to revere the LORD their God.
4. If the tithe was too heavy to carry to the destination that the Lord had chose to place His name, or if the distance to the Feast was so far that the food might spoil before arriving at the location that the Feast was to take place, the tithe could be sold for money. This tells us the tithe was not money, contrary to what many have been taught in Churches around the world.
5. Once the tither arrived at the destination that the Lord had chose to place His name, the money was to be used to buy the tithe that was to be eaten there before the Lord.
6. On every 3rd year, the tithe was not to be taken to the Levite’s, nor to the Feast, but the tithe was to be kept in one’s own city to feed the Levite that was living In that city, the widow, the orphans, and any stranger that happened to be in Israel at the time of the tithe. These people were fed the third year tithe.
7. The Levite’s, widows, orphans and foreigners were the only one’s who were qualified to receive the tithe of the tither.

If the principle set forth in the Book of Deuteronomy was followed, the LORD God promised to bless the one who tithed.

When one reads Malachi 3:5 in light of Deuteronomy 14:22-29, we see that the Priest’s were not allowing the tithe to go toward feeding the less fortunate.

When God said, “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”, He was telling the Priest’s to take the tithe of grains and meats, foodstuff, into the Temple storage chambers so that there would be food for themselves and for others in need.
If the tither would do this, God would cause the windows of heaven to open, the rain to fall, and the crops to increase in such a way that the tither would have more than he needed for his own self.