July 2013


The Biblical Tithe

A forum where the true Biblical tithe is promoted.

Advertisements

What is the purpose of the Church?

Are we to attend it because we have wants? or are we to attend because we have needs? What does the Word of God tell us?

Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

1 Peter 5:1-4 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

In Acts 20, Paul’s message to the elders was to “feed the Church of God.” Three years later, Peter was instructing the Church the exact same message, “feed the flock of God”

If a pastor is feeding our wants, we are not getting fed properly. Paul warned that we should not heap to ourselves teachers that will tickle our ears.

2 Timothy 4:1-4 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

Don’t let wants outweigh needs. Wants are no more than covetousness, desires to satisfy carnal lusts. Feeding them only leads to more carnality and is detrimental to our spiritual walk.

In his epistle to the Churches in Galatia, the Apostle Paul wrote:

Galatians 5:16 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

Our desire should not be to satisy the lusts of the flesh; i.e., worldly music, worldly entertainment, worldly pastors that won’t preach against sin, etc.. Rather, we who are Christ’s should have the desire to be fed that which is beneficial and good for the soul.

The Church, over the years, has changed its values tremendously. The attitude seems to be “Be like the world so you can reach the world.” And the world seems to love it. And why wouldn’t they love it? After all, when the world can come into the Church doors and see no difference; i.e., worldly music, dancing, messages of acceptance as you are, sodomites on the preaching staff, etc., the world need not feel condemned for the same sins they participate in on the outside.

Many churches today are just as ungodly as the bar at the county line. The only difference seems to be a mention of Jesus Christ once in a while. Because of complacency, many churches have become whited sepulchers full of dead man’s bones.

We are to be a light to the world, but if we allow ourselves to conform to the world to reach the world, we have only succeeded in exchanging the Light that is needed for a much dimmer light that is wanted.

What is the purpose of the Church?  To feed the flock, strengthening each member in the Word of God, so that each member is fully equipped and capable of going out into the world as a light that shines in darkness.  Not to imitate the darkness, but to reveal to those who are in darkness their need for Light and Truth.

When teaching their congregation that God expects them to tithe, many pastors will tell them to turn to Genesis 14 and see that Abram tithed before the Mosaic Law was established.

And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all. (Genesis 14:18-20; KJV)

After reading this passage, the pastor then tells his congregation that this means that since tithing pre-dates the Mosaic Law, and is found within the Mosaic Law, it is to be kept and observed today for it is an eternal moral principle for all people of all ages.

But is this true?  Is it an eternal moral principle for all people of all ages?  Let’s compare today’s monetary tithe to Abram’s tithe and see what the similarities are, if indeed there are any…

There is only one recorded instance of Abram tithing to Melchizedek found in the Word of God.
Do pastors teach that Christians only need to tithe once as Abram did?

That which Abram tithed was not wages earned for a day-to-day job. It was from the spoils of war.
Do pastors require tithes from day-to-day jobs? or from the spoils of war?

Abram tithed to Melchizedek only after he had been refreshed with natural food and drink.
Do pastors feed you natural food before requiring their monetary tithe?

Abram’s tithe included clothing.
Do pastors tell you to tithe clothing?

Abram tithed what did not even belong to him. He had promised God he would not keep any of the spoils lest Bera have the opportunity to say he had made Abram rich.
Do pastors expect you to tithe that which belongs to another man? or that which belongs to you? (yes, I know God owns it all, but the fact is, that which He owns, He gives to us. There are enough verses to show this as a fact)

Abram did not tithe to a Church or a Temple.
Does your pastor tell you you can tithe anywhere else other than the Church?

As the diligent student of the the Word of God can see, that which is being pushed off as “tithes” today nowhere resembles that which Abram tithed to Melchizedek. It is nothing short of nonsense to try to justify tithing by going to Abram’s tithe to Melchizedek.

Was Abram’s tithe continued in the Mosaic Law?  When comparing the account in Genesis 14 with the tithe that God required under the Mosaic Law, one will see that Abram’s tithe didn’t even resemble God’s Holy tithe under the Mosaic Law.  Notice:

Genesis 14:18-20 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.

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 if a man will at all redeem ought of his tithes, he shall add thereto the fifth part thereof. 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. He shall not search whether it be good or bad, neither shall he change it: and if he change it at all, then both it and the change thereof shall be holy; it shall not be redeemed. These are the commandments, which the LORD commanded Moses for the children of Israel in mount Sinai. (Leviticus 27:30-34; KJV)

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. (Deuteronomy 14:22-29; KJV)

And that we should bring the firstfruits of our dough, and our offerings, and the fruit of all manner of trees, of wine and of oil, unto the priests, to the chambers of the house of our God; and the tithes of our ground unto the Levites, that the same Levites might have the tithes in all the cities of our tillage. And the priest the son of Aaron shall be with the Levites, when the Levites take tithes: and the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes unto the house of our God, to the chambers, into the treasure house. (Nehemiah 10:37-38; KJV)

Scriptures pertaining to the Mosaic Law reveal that the tithe God required of the children of Israel and the Levites was strictly agricultural.
Is this the same as the tithe that Abram gave to Melchizedek? No!  Abram’s tithe included articles of clothing.

Further, in Numbers 31, we read that God required far less than a tithe from the spoils of war…

And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Take the sum of the prey that was taken, both of man and of beast, thou, and Eleazar the priest, and the chief fathers of the congregation: And divide the prey into two parts; between them that took the war upon them, who went out to battle, and between all the congregation: And levy a tribute unto the LORD of the men of war which went out to battle: one soul of five hundred, both of the persons, and of the beeves, and of the asses, and of the sheep: Take it of their half, and give it unto Eleazar the priest, for an heave offering of the LORD. And of the children of Israel’s half, thou shalt take one portion of fifty, of the persons, of the beeves, of the asses, and of the flocks, of all manner of beasts, and give them unto the Levites, which keep the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD. And Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the LORD commanded Moses. And the booty, being the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught, was six hundred thousand and seventy thousand and five thousand sheep, And threescore and twelve thousand beeves, And threescore and one thousand asses, And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him. And the half, which was the portion of them that went out to war, was in number three hundred thousand and seven and thirty thousand and five hundred sheep: And the LORD’S tribute of the sheep was six hundred and threescore and fifteen. And the beeves were thirty and six thousand; of which the LORD’S tribute was threescore and twelve. And the asses were thirty thousand and five hundred; of which the LORD’S tribute was threescore and one. And the persons were sixteen thousand; of which the LORD’S tribute was thirty and two persons. And Moses gave the tribute, which was the LORD’S heave offering, unto Eleazar the priest, as the LORD commanded Moses. And of the children of Israel’s half, which Moses divided from the men that warred, (Now the half that pertained unto the congregation was three hundred thousand and thirty thousand and seven thousand and five hundred sheep, And thirty and six thousand beeves, And thirty thousand asses and five hundred, And sixteen thousand persons;) Even of the children of Israel’s half, Moses took one portion of fifty, both of man and of beast, and gave them unto the Levites, which kept the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD; as the LORD commanded Moses. (Numbers 31:25-47; KJV)

Again, the tithe Abram gave to Melchizedek cannot be likened to the tithe God required of the children of Israel.

Now, one may argue that Israel was strictly an agricultural nation while under the Mosaic Law.  Many claim that money was scarce in that time.  Yet the Word of God reveals just the opposite…

The fact is, there were men of many trades and occupations that came out of Egypt and much gold and silver was also taken from Egypt by the Israelites.

Psalms 105:37-38 He brought them forth also with silver and gold: and there was not one feeble person among their tribes. Egypt was glad when they departed: for the fear of them fell upon them.

Today’s monetary tithe does not resemble the Mosaic Law tithe, nor does it resemble the tithe Abram gave to Melchizedek.  All three tithes are so much unalike in their elements and particulars that it is foolish to attempt to justify one by giving as an example another.

So, where did the monetary tithe doctrine come from?  Not from the Word of God!  Not one verse in either the Old or New Testament concerning tithing instructs one to tithe one’s money.  Again, where  does it come from?  From the invention of man.

Sadly, so many have believed the invention of man and elevated it to the same level (if not higher) as the Gospel itself.

Psalms 106:39 Thus were they defiled with their own works, and went a whoring with their own inventions.

Nuggets of Truth from Nehemiah
by Ronald W Robey
What percentage of Israel’s agricultural produce was taken to the storehouse at the House of God as a tithe?
 
If your answer was ten percent, your answer was incorrect…
 
It may shock some to learn that God did not require the children of Israel to tithe ten percent of their agricultural produce to the House of God.
 
Instead, they were to give their tithe to the Levites. The Levites then were required to bring a tithe of the tithe that they received to the House of God
 
That’s right, it was only the Ministerial Staff of the House of God that were required to tithe to the House of God. This meant that, of Israel’s total male population, God required roughly 8-9% to tithe to the House of God… One tribe out of twelve!
 
If the biblical guidelines governing God’s holy tithe were to be observed today, the person who attends a church service to hear the weekly sermon would not be required to tithe at the Church building.
 
Instead, The congregant would take their tithe to a farming community, and give it to a member of the Ministerial Staff at the Church. Those who had ministerial positions in the Church; i.e., Teachers, Musicians, Treasurers, Door Keepers, Ushers etc., would be required to take a tithe of that tithe to the Church storehouse. (which would be physically attached to the Church)
 
However, Pastors and other spiritual leaders will not tell you this truth. They will spin a web of deceit in order to trick you into thinking that all of Israel was required to tithe to the Temple and therefore, you are required to tithe to the Church.
 
Oh what tangled webs we weave, when first we practice to deceive.
 
Today’s monetary tithe nowhere resembles the tithe taught in the Bible
 
Nehemiah 10:37 And [that] we should bring the firstfruits of our dough, and our offerings, and the fruit of all manner of trees, of wine and of oil, unto the priests, to the chambers of the house of our God; and the tithes of our ground unto the Levites, that the same Levites might have the tithes in all the cities of our tillage.
 
Nehemiah 10:38 And the priest the son of Aaron shall be with the Levites, when the Levites take tithes: and the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes unto the house of our God, to the chambers, into the treasure house.
 
The above two verses reveal facts concerning God’s Holy tithe that are not taught in many church assemblies today. If they were, no doubt eyebrows would be raised in bewilderment as to how the teaching that tithes come first is even true.
 
Nuggets of Truth that we can glean from Nehemiah 10:37-38…
 
1. Tithes were not firstfruit offeringss.
 
2. The children of Israel, aka “the congregation”, took firstfruit offerings to the Temple, aka “the House of God”, storehouse.
 
3. The children of Israel were not authorized by God to tithe to the Temple.
 
4. That which was tithed to the storehouse was agricultural.
 
5. Only one percent of Israel’s total agricultural produce was tithed to the Temple storehouse
 
6. The children of Israel took tithes to farming communities scattered throughout Canaan.
 
7. The children of Israel gave their tithes to the Levitic tribe of Israel.
 
8. The children of Israel could not give their tithe to anyone without an Aaronic Priest being present at the time the tithe was given.
 
9. The Levites took a tithe of the tithe they received from the children of Israel to the Temple storehouse.

20.  Only Ministerial Staff were required to tithe to the House of God.

 
11. Had the children of Israel taken their tithes directly to the Temple, they would have been doing things their own way and not God’s way… which is rebellion.

12.  Pastors are not being honest with their congregations when they teach that the congregation is required to tithe to the House of God.

 
 
 

 

Nehemiah 10:37-38 And that we should bring the firstfruits of our dough, and our offerings, and the fruit of all manner of trees, of wine and of oil, unto the priests, to the chambers of the house of our God; and the tithes of our ground unto the Levites, that the same Levites might have the tithes in all the cities of our tillage. And the priest the son of Aaron shall be with the Levites, when the Levites take tithes: and the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes unto the house of our God, to the chambers, into the treasure house.

To break it down and make it easier for all to understand, suppose a farmer from the tribe of Benjamin grew 100 bushels of wheat during the year of the Levitical tithe.  That farmer would take ten bushels of wheat to a Levite in one of the 48 Levitical cities that the Levites lived in.  That was his tithe.  The Levite, would then bring one of those bushels that he received to the Temple and take that bushel into the storehouse there.  As you can see, only 1% of that Benjamite farmer’s crop was to go to the Temple storehouse, not 10%.

Numbers 35:1-8 And the LORD spake unto Moses in the plains of Moab by Jordan near Jericho, saying, Command the children of Israel, that they give unto the Levites of the inheritance of their possession cities to dwell in; and ye shall give also unto the Levites suburbs for the cities round about them. And the cities shall they have to dwell in; and the suburbs of them shall be for their cattle, and for their goods, and for all their beasts. And the suburbs of the cities, which ye shall give unto the Levites, shall reach from the wall of the city and outward a thousand cubits round about. And ye shall measure from without the city on the east side two thousand cubits, and on the south side two thousand cubits, and on the west side two thousand cubits, and on the north side two thousand cubits; and the city shall be in the midst: this shall be to them the suburbs of the cities. And among the cities which ye shall give unto the Levites there shall be six cities for refuge, which ye shall appoint for the manslayer, that he may flee thither: and to them ye shall add forty and two cities. So all the cities which ye shall give to the Levites shall be forty and eight cities: them shall ye give with their suburbs. And the cities which ye shall give shall be of the possession of the children of Israel: from them that have many ye shall give many; but from them that have few ye shall give few: every one shall give of his cities unto the Levites according to his inheritance which he inheriteth.

An oft-used passage that pastors say proves we are to tithe our money is found in the last book of the Old Testament.

Malachi 3:8-10 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.

Now, when used by itself, one might be convinced that the passage is speaking a command to the members of the New Testament Church to tithe their money to the Church.

But is that what that verse says?  Let’s be as the Bereans and search the Scriptures to see if it is as it is being preached…

First, we must see who is being addressed in Malachi 3.  Was it the entire nation of Israel?  If one rightly divides the Word of Truth, one will find that it was not the people.

If not the people, then who?

Let me give you just a little bit of historical background, specifically the time period when Malachi delivered this harsh rebuke and stern instruction.

Malachi delivered this message from God in the year 430 B.C., most pastors will agree that this is the correct date.  What they don’t tell you is that Nehemiah was a contemporary of Malachi’s, and to properly understand Malachi’s address one needs to know what is going on in the book of Nehemiah.

As I said, Nehemiah was a contemporary of Malachi.  This means they both lived in the same generation.  Malachi’s address was in 430 B.C., Nehemiah’s story was in 433 B.C…. just three years prior to Malachi delivering the message from God.

So how does Nehemiah fit into this, you may ask?  Let’s look at the Scripture…

We have already addressed the fact that the Levites were the ones who brought the tithes into the storehouse according to Nehemiah 10:37-38.  We have pointed out the fact that what was tithed to the Temple was not tithed by the Israelites, but by the Levites.

So was it the Levites robbing God?  No, it was not the Levites… it was the Priests, the sons of Aaron who were robbing God.  Notice:

Nehemiah 13:1-5 On that day they read in the book of Moses in the audience of the people; and therein was found written, that the Ammonite and the Moabite should not come into the congregation of God for ever; Because they met not the children of Israel with bread and with water, but hired Balaam against them, that he should curse them: howbeit our God turned the curse into a blessing. Now it came to pass, when they had heard the law, that they separated from Israel all the mixed multitude. And before this, Eliashib the priest, having the oversight of the chamber of the house of our God, was allied unto Tobiah: And he had prepared for him a great chamber, where aforetime they laid the meat offerings, the frankincense, and the vessels, and the tithes of the corn, the new wine, and the oil, which was commanded to be given to the Levites, and the singers, and the porters; and the offerings of the priests.

Did you catch that?  Eliashib, one of Aaron’s sons cleared the room where the tithes were kept and moved an Ammonite into the Temple storehouse.

The Priest robbed God!  He took the tithes that the Levites had brought into the storehouse out and moved God’s enemy into the storehouse.

Blasphemy!

Malachi’s rebuke becomes clear now.  The rebuke was to the Priests.  They had taken the tithes out of the storehouse.  They were the ones guilty of robbing God.  The congregation was not guilty, they had taken the tithes where they were supposed to take them.  The Levites were not guilty, they had brought the tithes into the storehouse as they were supposed to.  The Priests were guilty.  They removed the tithes so they could move the enemy of God in.

Malachi was telling the Priests that they had robbed God.  They also robbed the whole nation because the food that was supposed to be in the storehouse was not there.  Because they had removed the food, the Levites had no food to sustain them at the Temple.  They had to return to their cities so that they could survive.

Haggai 1:9-11 Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house. Therefore the heaven over you is stayed from dew, and the earth is stayed from her fruit. And I called for a drought upon the land, and upon the mountains, and upon the corn, and upon the new wine, and upon the oil, and upon that which the ground bringeth forth, and upon men, and upon cattle, and upon all the labour of the hands.

Do you see the result of rightly dividing?  The truth is known when one rightly divides.  Because the Priests robbed God by removing the tithes, the Levites had to return to their land and the House of God laid waste.  The Priest’s actions infuriated God and He withheld the rain and allowed the locust to eat what little there was.  The actions of the Priests oppressed the widows, the orphans, the Levites, and the foreigners taking refuge in Israel.  It oppressed them because the food that should have been there was not there.

Why is it that the Church teaches its members that God requires 10% of their money (as tithes) when God only required 1% of Israel’s total increase to be put in the Temple storehouse in Jerusalem?  It was not the congregation’s responsibility to tithe to the Temple.  The responsibility to tithe to the Temple fell solely upon the Levites.  They kept 90% of the tithe that they received in their Levitical cities, while the remaining 10% of that tithe they were required to take to the Temple.

The Church has lied to its members ever since it first taught they were to tithe of their money. God never required a tithe of money. The Church is teaching for doctrines the commandments of men, and God says of those who do such, “Even your worship is in vain.”

What has happened to the Church? The Apostles never taught the Church was to tithe.

Psalms 106:38-39 And shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan: and the land was polluted with blood. Thus were they defiled with their own works, and went a whoring with their own inventions.

The Bible reveals that God’s Holy tithe was not money, and yet, man (whether out of greed, or out of ignorance of what God’s Holy Word says) has invented a doctrine of a monetary tithe… and the Church has gone a whoring after that invention of man.

 

God’s Holy tithe was never required of the New Testament Church. The New Testament Church has taken the tithe that was required of Israel, a tithe of crops and livestock, and modified it completely. These modifications did not happen during the lifetime of any of the twelve Apostles of the Lamb. It was centuries later that a monetary tithe was adopted.

Leviticus 27:30-33 makes it clear that the Levitical tithe was of the seed of the land (crops) an fruit of the trees (crops) and every tenth animal to pass under the rod (livestock). There was never a command to tithe one’s money anywhere in Old Testament Israel. The Levitical tithe was taken to the Levites in the Levitical cities every year for six years in a seven year cycle. The tithe of crops could be redeemed at a cost. By redeemed, we mean ‘bought back’. The tither would take his crops to the Levite. The Levite would assess the value of the tithe and add a fifth of the value to the assessed value if the tither wanted to buy back the tithe. This proves that the tithe was not money. It would be foolish for a tither to take 20 shekels to the Levite and tell him, “Here’s my tithe… now I’d like to buy it back. You say it will cost me 24 shekels to buy it back? Fine… here you are!” Such a conversation would never have taken place. Money was not titheable in Old Testament Isreal. (Leviticus 27:30-33; Nehemiah 10:37-38)

Now, Nehemiah 10:37-38 sheds light on just who was robbing God in Malachi 3:7-11. It was not the children of Israel who were robbing God. Rather, it was the Priests. The children of Israel were to take their tithe to the Levites, the Levites were responsible for taking a tithe of that tithe to the storehouse. Now, while they were doing just that, the Word of God reveals that Eliashib the Priest had the tithes taken out of the storehouse chambers and moved Tobiah the Ammonite into the then empty storehouse. (Nehemiah 13)

Because he had removed the tithes from the storehouse, the Levites had to return to their Levitical cities so that they could survive… there was no food at the Temple when there should have been. The command given by the Lord to Malachi was to the Priest, telling him to bring the tithes into the storehouse so there could be food for the workers of the Temple. In robbing God by taking the tithes out of the Temple, the Priests were robbing the whole nation. Their actions caused God to withhold needed rain for the crops, and the nation was cursed.

There was a second tithe each year called a Festival tithe. This tithe was also of crops and livestock, and was taken to Jerusalem for one of three annual festivals. If the distance was too far for the tither, or the tithe was too heavy, he could sell the tithe for money. He was then to carry that money to Jerusalem and there spend the money on food and drink to celebrate the Festival with his family and Levites. (Deuteronomy 14:22-27)

A third tithe, called the Poor tithe, was kept by the tither on his property and used to feed the widows and orphans of Israel, the Levites living on the tither’s property, and refugees living in the land of Israel. (Deuteronomy 14:28-29) This tithe was to be observed and kept every third year in a seven year cycle.

The seventh year of the seven year cycle the land was to rest. No sowing, no harvesting. There could be no crop tithe that year.

After the destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D., there could be no more tithing. No Temple for the Levites to minister in, no sacrifices, etc. Tithing was no more… until the Church resurrected it and then modified it centuries after the Apostles had died. The Church had no business levying on Christians a monetary tithe. Our giving is to be voluntary, not of compulsion.

That’s Your Interpretation!!
by Ronald W Robey
 
“That’s your interpretation!”
 
Those were the words that echoed in my ears one afternoon during a conversation over the telephone.
 
The person on the other end informed me that my interpretation of Scripture concerning the tithe was not the same as hers, and that frankly, I had many people worried about me.
 
My question is, “Why?”
 
What are they worried for? How is my interpretation damaging to the truths written in God’s Word? Are we not to interpret Scripture in the manner in which it is written? Or are we to believe that any and all interpretations are right?
 
Did Elijah ascend to Heaven in a whirlwind? or was it in a tractor beam? What about John the Baptist? Was he wearing garments made of camel hair? or was it silk? Was he eating locust’s and honey? or was it venison and barbecue sauce?
 
Whether some want to accept it or not, the way we interpret Scripture is important. The Apostle Paul, in his second epistle to the Church at Corinth, wrote:
 
2 Corinthians 4:1-2 Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not; But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.
 
The ministers of God are not to handle the Word of God deceitfully, but are rather told to manifest the Truth.
 
That being said, I cannot agree with such statements as “That’s your interpretation!!, ” or, “We all have our own interpretations!!” or, “Just because a person has a different take on Scripture, doesn’t mean they are wrong.” God’s Word does not allow for false interpretation. To falsely interpret God’s Word and to teach that false interpretation is not an example of “manifesting the Truth” Truth does matter. It matters more than falsehood.
 
Concerning God’s tithe, many claim money is to be tithed, yet they never provide Scripture that commands one to tithe one’s money. Many say the Church is to receive tithes, but where is the Scripture that says such? Why is there never any Scripture given to support their claim?
 
Matthew 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
 
At what point in History did teaching the commandments of men become acceptable in the Sanctuary? Since when did pastors decide that their seminary training was right and God’s Word was not? Has the Church become like rebellious Israel and decided to do that which seems right in their own eyes?
 
I have laid out the challenge in the past. Pastor, spiritual leader, layman, Church member who has been attending Church for decades, … where is my doctrine not lining up with Scripture? If I am wrong, it is your responsibility, not just to tell me I’m wrong, but to show me where I am wrong. In the same manner, if you are wrong, it is my responsibility to tell you that you are wrong and to show you where you are wrong.
 
Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
 
I keep getting blasted for my stance on tithing. Well, if I am wrong, don’t just tell me I am wrong… show me I am wrong using the word of God. The word of God is not just given for rebuke, it is also given for doctrine, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.
 
To tell someone they are wrong without teaching them the right does no good whatsoever.
 
The Word of God tells us to “Search the Scriptures.” The noble Bereans “searched the Scriptures” to see if what was being taught by the Apostles was indeed what the Scriptures actually said.
 
It seems to me some are just not willing to “Search the Scriptures,” or to provide Scriptural “instruction” when it comes to the tithe.
 
I challenge all to “Search the Scriptures” to see if what I teach is so. If what I teach is in err, show me the Scriptures that say I am in err. Don’t just say, “That’s your interpretation.” Don’t just say, “We all have our own interpretation.”
 
Interpretation matters. Just as reading a map wrong will lead someone away from the place they are needing to go, so also wrong interpretation will lead a person in the wrong direction.
 
Matthew 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
 
Wrong interpretation only leads to the broad path to destruction.