Tuesday, 6 November 2012

The tussle of tithing...

An overview of what the Bible says about money is powerful stuff. Some of the verses we read are quite scary so we need to remember that we are looking at what God says in His word about this subject!

When some people in our churches talk about tithing, it’s not giving 10% before tax that they mean – it’s just their way of talking about their giving, like a catch-phrase. When we read Malachi 3:8, we face a different point of view.
‘Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. Yet you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ In tithes and offerings – you are under a curse, the whole nation of you because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse that there may be food in my house. Test me in this says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgate of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.’
This passage is quite clear – it says if you aren’t tithing then you are robbing God. It also says that if you do tithe then God will open the floodgates of heaven and pour out blessing so that there will be no room – that would be our testimony at King’s. Over the last fifteen plus years at King's we have taught proportional giving, that is giving from what you have, not what you haven't! We have also recognised that as we move from the Old to the New Testaments there is even more in the grace of God to us to be grateful for! Our giving arises from that recognition and a response of grateful love to the God who has done so much for us.

Some people say, ‘If I give my money then God will give me more money back.’ This attitude comes out of a view called ‘prosperity theology’ – we do not teach that at King’s; we think it is in error. God is not a slot machine where I put my money in and get more back - that sort of thinking is more about greed than sacrificial giving. The truth is that God might bless you financially... but He might not.