February 2016


PAY IT FORWARD
by Ronald W Robey
Many today, in their zeal to defend the doctrine of a monetary tithe requirement, will cite 1 Corinthians 16:2, saying that the word “prospered” is speaking of “proportion,” or “percentage.” It is not.
1 Corinthians 16:2 Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.
The word “prospered” is translated from the Greek word “euodoo”, which means, “to help on the road, i.e. (passively) succeed in reaching; figuratively, to succeed in business affairs:–(have a) prosper(-ous journey).”
euodoo was never translated as proportion in the Bible. The word used by the Greeks for “proportion” was the word “analogia”. Found only in one verse of the New Testament.
Romans 12:6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;
Back to 1 Corinthians 16:2. That verse was not speaking of proportion or percentage. It was speaking of prosperity. As God had made them prosperous in life, the Apostle Paul encouraged the saints at Corinth to help the poor saints in Jerusalem. But percentage was never mentioned. God leaves the amount given up to the giver…
2 Corinthians 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
“Purposeth”– “proaireomai”– “to choose for oneself.”
Not only was the Apostle Paul not speaking of percentage or proportion, Paul also was not speaking of tithes. Rather, he was speaking of a collection (Grk. logia) for the saints at Jerusalem.
1 Corinthians 16:1-4 Now concerning the collection (logia) for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings (logia) when I come. And when I come, whomsoever ye shall approve by your letters, them will I send to bring your liberality unto Jerusalem. And if it be meet that I go also, they shall go with me.
The Greek word for “collection” was the word “logia.” Again, nothing to do with tithes. Had Paul been speaking of tithes, he would have used the word “apodekatoo.” Paul did not use the Greek for “tithes” in any of his epistles. The collection in 1 Corinthians 16 was to be freely given (not of coercion) to ease burdened saints in Jerusalem.
In today’s language, we see the simple admonishment by Paul to the Church at Corinth, “God has helped you get to where you are today. Now I encourage you to ‘Pay It Forward.'”

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Many teachers of the monetary tithe requirement doctrine will use 1 Corinthians 9:13-14 in an attempt to prove that the pastors of our modern church assemblies are to be paid tithes by the saints in the congregation.  Their argument is that just as the Levites who worked in the House of God were authorized by God to take tithes, the pastors in the House of God are also authorized to take tithes.

But is that really what Paul was saying?

Who are “they which preach the gospel”? In order to learn just who the Apostle Paul was speaking of in his first epistle to the saints and faithful brethren at Corinth, we need to search the New Testament texts for any verses on the preaching of the Gospel.
Following is a list of several verses where we see the preaching of the Gospel…
Jesus “went about all Galilee…preaching the gospel” (Matthew 4:23)
Jesus “went about all the cities and villages…preaching the gospel” (Matthew 9:35)
Jesus declared that “the poor have the gospel preached to them” (Matthew 11:5)
Jesus said that the “gospel…shall be preached in all the world” (Matthew 24:14)
Jesus said that the “gospel…shall be preached in the whole world” (Matthew 26:13)
Jesus “came into Galilee, preaching the gospel” (Mark 1:14) ñ Jesus said “the gospel must first be published among all nations” (Mark 13:10)
Jesus said that the “gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world” (Mark 14:9)
Jesus told His disciples to “go…into all the world and preach the gospel” (Mark 16:15)
Jesus said that He would “preach the gospel to the poor” (Luke 4:18)
Jesus declared that “to the poor the gospel is preached” (Luke 7:22)
The disciples of Jesus “departed, and went through the towns, preaching the gospel” (Luke 9:6)
Jesus “preached the gospel” to the Jews in the temple (Luke 20:1)
The apostles “preached the gospel in many villages of the Samaritans” (Acts 8:25)

Paul and Barnabus “preached the gospel” in Lystra and Derbe (Acts 14:6-7)
Paul and Barnabus “preached the gospel to that city [Derbe]” (Acts 14:20-21)
Peter declared that “the Gentiles… should hear the word of the gospel” (Acts 15:7)
Paul relayed that God had called him to “go into Macedonia…to preach the gospel unto them” (Acts 16:10)
Paul said that he had “gone preaching the kingdom of God” (Acts 20:25)
Paul said that he was “an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God” (Romans 1:1)
Paul spoke of serving “in the gospel of his Son” and hoping for “a prosperous journey” (Romans 1:9-10)
Paul said that he was “ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome” (Romans 1:15)
Paul asked “how shall [preachers] preach, except they be sent?”
Paul said that he was “to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God” (Romans 15:16)
Paul declared that “from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, [he had] fully preached the gospel of Christ” (Romans 15:19)
Paul said that he “strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest [he] should build upon another man’s foundation” (Romans 15:20)
Paul said that Christ “sent [him]…to preach the gospel” (1 Corinthians 1:17)
Paul said that he “came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel” (2 Corinthians 2:12)
Paul said that Titus “whose praise is in the gospel” was “chosen of the churches to travel with [him]” (2 Corinthians 8:18-19)
Paul said that he was “come as far as to [the Corinthians] also in preaching the gospel of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:14)
Paul hoped “To preach the gospel in the regions beyond” the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 10:16)
Paul warned about someone “that cometh [who] preacheth another Jesus” (2 Corinthians 11:4)
Paul recalled that he “went up by revelation, and communicated unto [Jerusalem] that gospel which [he preached] among the Gentiles” (Galatians 2:2)
Paul said that he “preached the gospel unto [the Galatians]” (Galatians 4:13)
Paul told the Ephesians to have their “feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace” (Ephesians 6:15)
Paul said that he was to “open [his] mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which [he was] an ambassador” (Ephesians 6:19-20)
Paul said that Timothy “hath served with [him] in the gospel” (Philippians 2:22)
Paul declared that “in the beginning of the gospel [he] departed from Macedonia” (Philippians 4:15)
Paul reminded the Colossians of “the truth of the gospel which is come unto [them]” (Colossians 1:5-6)
Paul encouraged the Colossians of “the hope of the gospel… which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof [Paul was] made a minister” (Colossians 1:23)
Paul told the Thessalonians that the “gospel came…unto [them] in power, and in the Holy Ghost” (1 Thessalonians 1:5)
Paul said that the Thessalonians “sounded out the word of the Lord…in Macedonia and Achaia” and that their faith “is spread abroad” (1 Thessalonians 1:8)
Paul reminded the Thessalonians of his “entrance unto” them “to speak unto [them] the gospel of God” (1 Thessalonians 2:1-2)
Paul said that Timothy, who had traveled with him, was “a fellow laborer in the gospel of Christ” (1 Thessalonians 3:2)
The writer of the epistle to the Hebrews declared that “unto us was the gospel preached” (Hebrews 4:2)
Peter reminded the Jewish believers in his epistle about the apostles “that have preached the gospel unto [them]” (1 Peter 1:12)
John in his vision of the Revelation saw an angel have “the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people” (Revelation 14:6)

Does anyone see a pattern in all of these verse references?

After examining the nearly fifty verses dealing with those who preach the Gospel, it is evident that during the first century, the preaching of the Gospel was practiced in an atmosphere apart from and unafiliated with the local assembled Body of Believers.
The preaching of the Gospel was to the lost, not to the saved! The lost, (out in the world) hear the Gospel, believe it and trust Christ. In trusting Christ, they are saved and added to the Church. (the Body of Christ)

Therefore, 1 Corinthians 9:13-14 do not support the theory that pastors are authorized to take tithes of their congregations.  It is dealing with support for the Apostles, traveling ministers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

How many, while discussing tithes with a pro-tithing proponent, have heard the other party say, “We are not under the Law, but under Grace. However,Jesus Himself said it should be done. So, we should pay our tithe.”

While they admit that we are not under the Law, they are placing themselves under the Law by saying “We should pay our tithe.”

In the same verse where Jesus said that tithing should be done, (Matthew 23:23) Jesus also said that tithing is “a matter of the Law.”  One cannot employ a matter of the Law without being subject to the Law.

If one is subject to the precepts of the Law, then one is also susceptible to the penalties of the Law when that Law is broken.

Deuteronomy 28 reveals the curse that is the result of not keeping the Law in the manner that God decreed.

Is one truly keeping the Law of tithing when one tithes money to ones local religious institution? The answer, of course, is NO!

The Law states that God’s holy tithe is agricultural, not monetary. (Leviticus 27:30-33; Deuteronomy 14:22-29)  It also states that man cannot do what seems right in his own eyes. (Deuteronomy 12:8)

One cannot place oneself under the Law of the Tithe and use the argument, “I am not a farmer, nor am I a herder” as an excuse to tithe money.

If one places oneself under the Law, then one must live by that Law’s demands,… or be cursed. (Galatians 3:10)

The Law is the justification, or the condemnation of the one walking in it. Such an one who is walking in the Law has rejected Jesus Christ. (Galatians 5:4)

Prophelying Prophets
by Ronald W Robey

Jeremiah 23:16 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain: they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the LORD.
Jeremiah 23:17 They say still unto them that despise me, The LORD hath said, Ye shall have peace; and they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, No evil shall come upon you.
Jeremiah 23:18 For who hath stood in the counsel of the LORD, and hath perceived and heard his word? who hath marked his word, and heard it?
Jeremiah 23:19 Behold, a whirlwind of the LORD is gone forth in fury, even a grievous whirlwind: it shall fall grievously upon the head of the wicked.
Jeremiah 23:20 The anger of the LORD shall not return, until he have executed, and till he have performed the thoughts of his heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly.
Jeremiah 23:21 I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.
Jeremiah 23:22 But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings.
Jeremiah 23:23 Am I a God at hand, saith the LORD, and not a God afar off?
Jeremiah 23:24 Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD.
Jeremiah 23:25 I have heard what the prophets said, that prophesy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed.
Jeremiah 23:26 How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart;

We have heard many times, and many of us have repeated an old proverb, “Those who do not learn from History are doomed to repeat it.”

Today, in many Churches around the world, History is repeating itself. Just as there were prophets who were not called of, nor sent by God in Jeremiah’s day, we have many who have taken the position of pastor, elder, bishop, apostle, and other titles and offices that God never appointed them to be in.

Notice the words of Jeremiah, “I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.

What were the prophets of Jeremiah’s day prophesying? They prophesied a vision of their own heart, and not that which the Lord had spoken. In other words, they spoke their opinions. They dismissed what God had decreed, and preached unto the people a way that seemed right unto them… and sadly, to the people they spoke to, the words seemed right as well.

This brought God’s wrath and judgment upon the nation of Israel. They had rejected God’s Word for the words of a lying prophet.

We see the same thing happening today. Men are standing behind, what is seen by many as a sacred desk,… the pulpit, and preach words that God never intended to be preached in the ears of the New Covenant Believer in Christ Jesus.

They were not sent by God to preach this word. Instead, they preach from opinion, … man’s opinion. And the congregation, the assembly, because they are not studying the Word, fall prey and victim to the lying lips of the prophet they have chosen to themselves.

Preach to us good things,” seems to be the cry of the congregation. We do not want to hear bad things.

2 Timothy 4:3 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;

Many today would rather sit under the teaching of man’s opinion rather than under the Word of God. Why? Because the Word of God demands that the flesh be crucified. God wants man to submit to His will for man. But the man who can stand behind the pulpit and prophesy of good things, things that satisfy the flesh, he is acceptable in man’s sight. He has given them what they want to hear.

One doctrine that the lips of a preacher not sent by God will teach his congregation is the doctrine that God requires a monetary tithe. The preacher will quote Malachi 3:8-10, bringing the curse that was upon Israel and placing it upon the congregation. He will take the blessing out of Malachi and promise it to the assembled body. He will take the tithe that was required of the Priests of Israel in Malachi and demand that the people who hired him to be their spiritual leader give to him as their pastor.

But, as the prophets of Jeremiah 23 did, this preacher will preach his own opinion of what the passage says, instead of what God actually said.

They turn the blessing into job security, financial raise at place of employment, good health, a tight-knit family, vehicle that is protected from breaking down, etc. Anything but what God said the blessing was, i.e.; rain from the clouds to water the ground so that it could produce crops in such an abundance that other nations would take notice and admit that Israel was truly blessed of God.
They turn the curse of Malachi 3 into unemployment, financial ruin, medical emergencies, family fights and disappointments, mechanical problems with the family vehicle, etc.. Anything but what God declared the curse to be in His Holy Word, i.e.; draught to impede the growth of vegetation in the gardens and locusts to eat the crops.

Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

The children of God rejected the Word of God. They had the Word of God delivered by true prophets who spoke according to the Word of God. Yet, they rejected the true Word spoken by prophets sent by God and chose to walk according to a vision in the heart of a man not sent by God.

Those who are sent by God will speak according to God’s decree.

Today, many assemblies are destroyed for lack of knowledge. They will not open their Bibles and study to see God’s will for their lives. Instead, they listen to the man behind the sacred desk as he reads God’s Word and then proceeds to tell them his opinion, which they are to accept as fact.

It is not.

So many today are in financial ruin because they have yielded to the lie that God requires us to tithe our money to the Church. Many would rather lose their homes to foreclosure than to incur the wrath of God for disobeying His command to tithe. And because they do not read His holy Word properly, by submitting to the preacher’s doctrine of a monetary tithe requirement, they follow after the doctrine of man instead of the decree of God.

Matthew 15:9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

The pastor that teaches contrary to God’s Word, teaching his own opinion as if it were the commandment of God, is worshiping in vain. Those who follow after him are as blind as he is and both will fall in the ditch.

Wake up saints. God’s commanded tithe was not money. It was agricultural according to Leviticus 27:30-33 & Deuteronomy 14:22-29. It was not for the New Testament Church, it was for Israel according to Leviticus 27:34 & Psalms 147:19-20. It was to be observed only once God’s children crossed Jordan River and entered Canaan, according to Deuteronomy 6:1-3 & 12:10-11. It was not to be observed on Gentile soil.

Are you agreeing with God? are you agreeing with a lying and deceitful pastor?

Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

Jeremiah 23:25 I have heard what the prophets said, that prophesy lies in my name, saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed.
Jeremiah 23:26 How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart;