Stewardship


Many have claimed that John Davison Rockefeller tithed his very first earnings and continued tithing faithfully throughout his entire life. And yet, Mr. Rockefeller’s Ledger published by himself in 1897 tells an entirely different story altogether.
 
Rockefeller’s first year of earnings, ( from August 27, 1855 to January 1, 1856) he earned a total of fifty dollars.  Of that fifty dollars, he paid his washerwoman and paid his rent to the lady he boarded with, purchased some “cheap clothes” for six dollars nine cents, and began putting a penny in the Sunday School Plate every Sunday.

A penny a week for seventeen weeks equals seventeen cents, given out of the fifty dollars.  A far cry short of five dollars, which is ten percent of fifty dollars.

 
The next year, (1856) according to his Ledger, Rockefeller received a raise in his salary and earned three hundred dollars. With the raise, he made a raise in the Sunday School Plate. He gave a dime a week instead of a penny.
 
Ten cents a week for fifty-two weeks.  That adds up to five dollars twenty cents.  Again, a far cry short of being twn cents out of every dollar.
 
Rockefeller spoke about his first few years earnings at the Young Men’s Bible Study Class at Fifth Avenue Baptist Church in 1897. Not once in his message to those young men did he say that he ever tithed his money to the Church. Nor did he tell the young men that they could be tithing their money to the Church either.
 
You can read Mr Rockefeller’s message published by himself in 1897 at https://ia800906.us.archive.org/32/items/mrrockefellersle00rock/mrrockefellersle00rock.pdf
I do not agree with the Faith Promise Campaign. Faith Promise has one vowing to give “x” amount of money per month for a year.
 
The problem? It’s not Biblical.
 
In 2 Corinthians 8, we read,…
 
2 Corinthians 8:12 For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.
1. Paul said giving should be of a “willing mind.” Many feel pressured to sign the Faith Promise cards. This is not a “willing mind,” but rather, “a forced mind.”
 
2. Giving should be according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have. Not one of us know what will happen from one day to the next. According to James, our life itself is “but a vapour”. We don’t know if some medical need will take a good portion of our future monetary income. or a lay-off from work, or even inflation will cause us to need more for food on our tables and household bills. Faith Promise has us vowing to give money that we don’t have yet, nor really know if we will have.
 
Faith Promise works in total contradiction to 2 Corinthians 8:12.

I have made up my mind.

I will stay at home and fellowship with like-minded Believer’s online as much as posible.

Why have I made up my mind?  Because there is no Church in my neighborhood to go to that will not ultimately accuse me of being a “God-robber” because of my unwavering stance against tithing as it is being taught in our Churches today.

In May of 2012, I began posting the truth about what God’s Word says concerning His holy tithes on my Facebook page and elsewhere on the world wide web.  God had given me the green light to begin telling people that in the Bible, His holy tithes were never commanded for the New Testament Church, never carried to the New Testament Church, never collected in the New Testament Church, and never controlled by the New Testament Church.

Yet pastors of every Church I ever was a member of from my youth always used Malachi 3:8-10 to prove that God demands tithes of the Church Body.  They also used that passage as a platform to berate and accuse those who were not tithing their money to that local fellowship.  They also would use that pasage to instill fear of a curse on anyone who was not obeying the command to tithe found in Malachi 3:8-10.

They were handling the Word of God deceitfully.  Either out of ignorance, or out of greed, or a combination of both.  But they were preaching a false doctrine.

And in September of 2012, the Church I was a member of voted me out of their congregation because, and I quote, “of your consistent teaching against the Scriptural tithe”. (At this point in my article, I must let the reader know that I never taught a single tithe sermon within the walls of that Church building, nor on the property the building was erected on)  Funny thing is, I was teaching the “Scriptural tithe”.  It was the leadership of that congregation who were not teaching the “Scriptural tithe”.  They were teaching a doctrine that had been invented by man, a doctrine totally foreign to the Word of God.

My journey down the path of truth did not begin in 2012.  No, it began many years before that.   It began in 1988, in the Church where I was ordained to preach the Gospel.

I had been saved for nine years, and had been a member of the pastor’s household, living in the den on the bottom floor.  I was faithful in my studies, and faithful in Church attendance.  And yes, I was even faithful in obeying the tithe doctrine that the pastor (and previous pastors of my youth before I was saved ) had taught me

The year I was ordained, I began a home Bible study, just a few Believers and myself.  But within a short period of time, the group grew and I could see God was taking it somewhere.  I was encouraged to branch off of the fellowship I was ordained at and begin a new Church.  (my group by this time had grown to the point that even if I wanted to take them to the Church I was a member of, there would have been no room for them at that small country Church.  Thus, the need to begin a Church where these members could be nourished with the Word of God, equipping them with the Word to minister to others in their everyday life.

And so, MorningStar Fellowship was started.

In the first few weeks of our Church’s existence, I was impresed by the Holy Spirit to do a series of lessons on “Stewardship and the Christian”, teaching proper responsibility in the handling of finances through wise spending and charity.  I believed that one of the areas that was important was obedience to God in tithing our money as I was taught from my youth in the Assemblies of God denomination I grew up in.

Proper teaching on any subject requires proper study.  And so, I spent many hours pouring over the Word of God, searching the Scriptures for every mention of money in the pages of that precious Book of Truth.  I researched tithes in the Bible as well, as that would be a lesson of the utmost importance for our new Body.

Little did I know at that time that the teaching of tithes was of more importance than what I had imagined.  I entered the research with the mindset that God required tithes of the New Testament Church, and with the intentions of preaching that same thought.

But the more I researched, the more I studied, the more I realized that I could not preach to the congregation that I had under my supervision, the command to tithe their hard-earned money to the Church.

I saw in the Bible that God gave the command to tithe to the children of Israel.  (Leviticus 27:30-34; Deuteronomy 6:1-3; 12:1-11; 14:22-29)  But for the life of me, I could not find one single verse in the New Testament that was a command for the New Testament Church to tithe.  Further, the verses that commanded tithing in the Bible all pointed to an agricultural tithe, not a monetary one.  I came to the realization that God never commanded those who live on Gentile soil to tithe their money to the New Testament Church.

And so, that is what I taught the congregation that was entrusted to my care.  Instead of teaching a mandatory tithe, I taught the congregation to give because they saw a need and because they loved the Lord and wanted to see His work done in the Earth.  These principles can clearly be seen in Acts 2:42ff & Acts 4:32ff.  The New Testament Believer is encouraged by the Apostle Paul to give, not under compulsion, but rather as he chooses in his own heart to give.  Paul tells the reader that their attitude in giving will affect the blessing they receive as a result of that giving.  (2 Corinthians 9:6-7)  He also tells us that our giving should not be such that we cause others to be eased while we leave ourselves in want.  (2 Corinthians 8:12-13)

Down through the years, God has given me more insight into the truth concerning His holy tithes, and I share those truths with all, hoping to free them from the chains of financial bondage that many pastors keep them under.

As I stated previously, the Church that voted me out was teaching a doctrine totally fabricated by man, never found in the pages of God’s Holy Word… and telling their flock that “God requires it, or you are robbing Him!

In Matthew 15:9, Jesus said that the Pharisees were worshiping in vain because they were teaching for doctrine the commandments of men.  Many pastors today are guilty of the same thing.

When they teach that God requires monetary tithes, they teach for doctrine the commandments of men.

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