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Why Tithe in the 20th Century?
Good News Magazine
February 1976
Volume: Vol XXV, No. 2
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Why Tithe in the 20th Century?
Garner Ted Armstrong   
Church of God

Born: February 9, 1930
Died: September 15, 2003
Member Since: 1930
Ambassador College: 1956
Ordained: 1955
Office: Evangelist

The jet age has ushered in the ultimate in "financial sophistication." Many banks now offer five or ten different savings plans individually tailored to a wide range of personal financial needs. Notwithstanding, the largest city on the face of this continent is flat broke! The fiscal woes of corporate America (the REA, W. T. Grant, the Penn Central, the Rock Island, etc.) fill the pages of our financial journals. We live in an age of delinquent mortgages, a mountain of governmental, private and corporate debt — all in the midst of general monetary confusion! There is, however, a living financial law that will payoff for the modern man and woman even in the challenging Space Age. This article explains.

   The Church of God today lives and breathes and moves in a vastly different and much more highly complex mechanized world than that of the first-century Church. It must deal daily with computers, highly intricate mailing machines, the very latest in TV technology (including a first-of-its-kind traveling video pod) and many of the other technical paraphernalia and accouterments that go hand in hand with a world that is only six hours from New York to London.
   The future shock of modern life even in a mechanized sense has necessitated different Church procedures and up-to-date methods of organization and operation. Yet the basic biblical faith and way of life remain the same. True Christianity is a way of life! (See Acts 9:1-2; 18:26; 19:9.) It has everything to do with your business practices, your basic appearance, your day-in and day-out associations with others, and even, believe it or not, the way you handle your money.
Work of God. God has held out His way of life — His way of doing things — to all the generations that have ever etched their footprints in the earth. He has always had a work that was giving a warning and witness to this world — fearlessly condemning its evil practices and promising a better world to come.
   Jude preserved a vital prophecy attributed to the ancient patriarch Enoch: "And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, to execute judgment upon all, and to convince [convict] all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed..." (Jude 14, 15).
   But anyway you want to count it (see Gen. 5:4-24; I Chron. 1:1-3; Luke 3:37-38), Enoch is not chronologically the seventh from Adam. The indications are that he was the seventh of eight pre-Flood patriarchs who fearlessly proclaimed the way of God to the chaotic and oftentimes violent antediluvian world. And one of the cardinal precepts of proclaiming God's way of life revolves around what we have called "the give way."
God's Great Law of Giving. The creation itself is mute testimony to the existence of physical law — unchangeable, immutable, irrevocable (see Romans 1 and Psalm 19). And God Himself is the great Lawgiver! "There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and destroy..." (James 4:12).
   Here James obviously is primarily referring to the giving of spiritual law. My point is that God is the author of unseen, and yet very active, spiritual laws that regulate man's relationship with his neighbor — and most importantly with his God. A vital aspect of this great spiritual law involves man's financial well-being.
   Righteous Abel may well have been the very first human being to fully exemplify this great natural financial law. Notice the apostle Paul's brief comment in Hebrews 11: "By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh" (verse 4).
   Abel was a sheepherder; his brother Cain was a farmer. Notice Genesis 4:3-5: "And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect...."
   Note the italicized words carefully. They both gave gifts to God — but Abel put his God before all, he gave God the first, the choicest, and the fattest. Cain carelessly threw together a quick offering out of his harvest; apparently it was neither the first nor the best.
   Abel obeyed the greatest of God's commandments. "And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might" (Deut. 6:5). Jesus Christ of Nazareth called this the first and great commandment (Matt. 22:37-38).
   You can sum up the financial aspect of this great commandment this way: Give of your best to God first! Giving is a living natural law — not only to God, but to your neighbor (see Lev. 19:18).
Abraham Follows Abel. God is the great Lawgiver! And he expects His people to be obedient and submissive to law — natural, physical and spiritual. The patriarch Abraham was just such a person. Like Abel before him, he was a righteous man: "Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws" (Gen. 26:5). God spoke this scripture to Isaac after Abraham's death; it was a sort of epitaph on the manner in which Abraham conducted his life.
   In a financial way, Abraham specifically expressed his thanksgiving to God as follows: "Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils [to God]" (Heb. 7:4). Abraham was a tither (see Gen. 14:17-24). The context of these verses in Genesis clearly shows that God received His due before any further disposition was made. Abraham knew on which side his bread was buttered; he knew that God was the source of all his blessings — "I have lift up mine hand unto the Lord, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth" (verse 22). He was an exceedingly prosperous man, one who was mightily blessed of God. His attitude of giving was one of the main reasons why.
Jacob's Example. His son Isaac and grandson Jacob followed in his footsteps. Jacob privately told his Creator in prayer: "If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment [clothing] to put on, so that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee" (Gen. 28:20-22).
   Jacob promised to tithe while only a young man — before he had really made a " thin dime" away from home. Notice now a follow-up scripture when Jacob was 147 years old — the last year of his life. Did God fulfill His part of the "bargain" and bless Jacob throughout most of his life with material prosperity? "And he [ Jacob] blessed Joseph, and said, God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac did walk, the God which fed me all my life long unto this day" (Gen. 48:15).
   Jacob had a deeply personal appreciation to God for all his blessings. God had given him a great deal; there was hardly enough space in the country for all his cattle (see Gen. 36:7). Jacob evidently expressed this deep appreciation by tithing! "Of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee."
Tithing Means Giving. Some people claim tithing is not giving, and is, in fact, opposed to giving. But this is merely a play on words intended to divide and confuse God's people! Years ago I read in a little religious "tract" an example of this kind of reasoning. The writer went to great lengths to explain how his wife loved him, and he loved her. He then explained how it was not necessary for him to post a "ten commandments" of behavior on the walls of his home when he left for a trip. He was teaching against having to "arbitrarily" obey God's law! He pled for "grace" in place of "law"! Not that he taught disobedience — far be it from any professing minister to go so far as to openly claim he may disobey God and still receive eternal life — but the clever approach was one of whether his obedience was "voluntary" or whether it was "commanded." He did not, he said, need to post orders on the wall which told his wife, "When I am gone, thou shalt not entertain the milkman, the grocery man, the television repairman, or the garbage collector in my home." His wife would just "naturally" do none of these things — voluntarily — because she loved him!
   Beautiful, subtle, human reasoning!
"Arbitrary" Tithing? But — supposing his wife did invite the garbage man in for a drink, and maybe more — according to this man's reasoning, had she broken any law? Was there any automatic penalty? Apparently not.
   Those who reason against "tithing" — and who cleverly try to persuade people against "arbitrary" tithing — or a "system" of tithing, or "tithing to a computer" are using the same subtle, and satanic, reasoning.
   "Tithing" merely means "tenthing." It is giving — voluntarily — one full, first tenth of one's increase to God. God Almighty reserves the right to tell you and me what is sin. We are given the God-granted privilege of deciding whether or not to sin! God reserves the right to place His prior claim on the first tenth of our incomes — and grants us the full freedom to decide whether we will voluntarily, freely, cheerfully give to God what He claims! He will never take it! He will never "exact" or "extract" it! But He will completely withdraw His protection and His blessing from one who disobeys His plainly spoken prior claim.
Attitude of Rebellion. This attitude of deciding "I will obey — but only when I get good and ready" — only when I decide to voluntarily obey — is the attitude of complete rebellion! Rebellion, according to the divine Word of God, is "as the sin of witchcraft"! (I Sam. 15:22-23.)
   Child psychologists attempt to persuade timorous parents to use this type of reasoning when dealing with their children. Never "tell" the child when to go to bed, when to get up, when to come in from play, when to take a bath, they reason, but ask him if he is "ready" to do these things, or if he might "like" to do them.
   Thus, you avoid building up a spirit of "resentment" and rebellion in the child. If the child can make his own decisions, they reason, he will be far more mature. But following his parents' orders will clearly warp a child's development, they claim.
   What an abominable teaching! And how evident are the automatic, evil fruits being suffered by whole nations, who are seeing, daily, the fulfillment of Isaiah's prophecy: "As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them" (Isa. 3:12).
   One who reasons this way attempts to exalt himself above God! He wishes to bask in his own super-spiritual aura of goodness by pride-fully rejoicing in his great sacrifice of giving! He is exactly like the man in the parable of the Pharisee and the publican who boasted, "I give tithes of all that I possess.... "Instead of the attitude of humble obedience to divine law, and to divinely revealed principle and the God-ordained way of life, there was pride and vanity in the lofty pronouncement of his own goodness to have given (!) tithes.
   God says to obey is better than the fat of rams (I Sam. 15:22-23).
   But to the one who says, "No, Lord — I will give only when I get good and ready — I will never give when you tell me to — only when I decide to...." I say you will be standing with those who look in wonderment and beg Jesus Christ to be admitted into His Kingdom, while He says, "I never knew you...."
   Jacob said he was going to give God the tithe! Tithing means "tenthing," and it is "giving"!
A Code of Giving. God has always used giving as an ongoing principle to conduct whatever work (at whatever time in history) He was conducting through human instruments on this earth. By the time of the exodus out of Egypt, the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had grown from a small patriarchal family of several hundreds (including servants and herdsmen) to a great multitude of from two to five million people. The weight of sheer numbers dictated that a code of law in writing was obviously necessary to govern such a great multitude of people. Yet the principles of giving remained the same as before.
   Notice Numbers 18:21. "And, behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth ["giving" is used in connection with tithing once again] in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation."
   Here God turned His tithe over to the Levitical priesthood for their use in the administration and conduct of His work in the time of Moses.
   Its origins, however, clearly were not Levitical. Notice: "And all the tithe of the land... is the Lord's..." (Lev. 27:30). Tithing goes all the way back to the Melchizedek Priesthood (which may have begun as far back as Adam).
   To Melchizedek, Levi's great grandfather Abraham "gave a tenth part of all" (Heb. 7:2). The apostle Paul here makes it crystal clear that tithing is not Levitical in the sense that it began (and by implication has to end) with the administration of the Levites. "And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham: But he [Melchizedek — the One who became Christ] whose descent is not counted from them [the Levites] received tithes of Abraham.... And here men [the Levites] that die receive tithes.... Levi also, who receiveth tithes, payed tithes [before he or his children were born] in Abraham. For he was yet in the loins of his [great grand]father, when Melchizedek met him" (verses 5-6, 8-10).
   So tithing had long been an ongoing financial proposition by the time God formally instituted ancient Israel's civil law through Moses. It was not a " new idea of Moses" that completely revolutionized their monetary system.
A Spiritual Reawakening. Time took a quick toll on the willingness of ancient Israel to tithe and obey God's laws. Soon that "united" nation split into two nations. It finally got so bad that God had to disinherit the northern ten-nation kingdom (II Kings 17). Meanwhile, conditions rapidly worsened in the southern nation of Judah.
   However, King Hezekiah, a righteous ruler, came to the throne to temporarily stem the tide. He presided over a national housecleaning. Pagan idols and carved images of alien gods (objects of idolatry) were smashed into pieces (II Chron. 31:1).
   Tithing was quickly reinstituted! "And as soon as the commandment [from Hezekiah] came abroad, the children of Israel brought in... all the increase of the field; and the tithe of all things brought they in abundantly. And concerning the children of Israel and Judah, that dwelt in the cities of Judah, they also brought in the tithe of oxen and sheep, and the tithe of holy things which were consecrated unto the Lord their God, and laid them by heaps.... And when Hezekiah and the princes came and saw the heaps, they blessed the Lord, and his people Israel" (verses 5-6, 8).
   A couple of verses at the end of this chapter sum up the results of Hezekiah's widespread reform movement. "And thus did Hezekiah throughout all Judah, and wrought that which was good and right and truth before the Lord his God. And in every work that he began in the service of the house of God, and in the law, and in the commandments, to seek his God, he did it with all his. heart, and prospered" (verses 20-21).
   As long as the nation of Judah obeyed God's laws and faithfully paid their tithes, they were BLESSED almost beyond belief. Unfortunately, they soon went backwards spiritually and all too quickly joined their northern neighbors in the tragic exercise of national slavery to a foreign power. A mistaken belief that tithing "was no longer necessary" contributed heavily to their nationwide apostasy.
Message of Malachi. God sternly warned them through the prophet Malachi: "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.... And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of hosts" (Mal. 3:8-10, 12).
   Here God holds out His test — His challenge to mankind in general and every Christian in particular. God says to "Prove me now herewith." He says to put Him to the test and see if He won't bless you in many unexpected ways. Sometimes God's blessings are readily apparent, obvious, tangible, easily discernible; others are intangible, spiritual, but just as real!
   In the August 1974 number of the GN, I published several letters out of the great stack of literally thousands we have received as the years go by, from people just like you, who have found how wonderfully God blesses those who are willing to give.
Tithing in the Christian Era. There is a great tithing principle in God's Word which transcends and supersedes the mere giving of a tenth of all one's increase. The entire question revolves around whether a person is of a willing and obedient SPIRIT, and really desires to obey His God and Creator, who gives him every breath of air he breathes, or whether one wishes to be a pharasaical "nitpicker" and must, like a balky mule, be forced or dragged with the threat of a whip into doing every single task set before him.
   It is a matter of conversion and of attitude!
   The question revolves around whether or not we are willing and eager to do all our heavenly Father commands us (as well as being instantly responsive to even those things which He may suggest for our good), or whether we are always carefully approaching the study of His Word from the point of view of "Just how much must I do?"
   In the "Sermon on the Mount" there is one scripture in particular that bears heavily on this question. Jesus told His disciples privately (and we are privileged to have it preserved in writing for our example and learning today): "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. [Jesus came not to annul, rescind, or do away with the law, but to fulfill it — that is, to fill it to the full, like filling up a bottle with water.] For verily [truly] I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven" (Matt. 5:17-19).
   One verse in Luke's account adds a great deal of emphasis to this vitally important point: "And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail" (Luke 16:17).
   Then Jesus went on to show in the rest of the fifth chapter of Matthew just how He magnified God's law. Using only about six different illustrations, He first paraphrased an Old Testament law or principle and then gave its real intended meaning.
   But my point is this: Jesus Christ of Nazareth did not specifically deal with the tithing law anywhere in the "Sermon on the Mount." And it is not dealt with that specifically and pointedly anywhere else in the New Testament. In most cases, the mentioning of tithing in the New Testament is incidental to another main subject being discussed. Perhaps this is because tithing may have been universally accepted and was not generally being questioned in that time. It was not a "theological issue" as was physical circumcision and the eating of meats in an idol's temple.
   So what we are left with is the modern application and expansion of the Old Testament principles and laws (which Jesus specifically said He did not come to rescind or annul) related to tithing in particular.
A Living Witness. God is alive. Jesus Christ is a living, functioning, active High Priest. God's Holy Spirit is living and powerful today, and the Bible is a living witness — not a dead one that hasn't been really alive and applicable for nearly 2,000 years.
   No one should assume that unless you can read a specific command somewhere in the New Testament, God's expressed and implied will (and His desire in our lives, as well as the examples of the "holy men of old") is automatically obi iterated!
   God does not need to speak directly to His children twice! If God clearly expresses His will, blesses His people for observing His ways and His laws, and we see New Testament indications of God's Church following the same principle, then we ought to obey our God.
   People begin to assume that unless the New Testament carefully itemizes and catalogs every centillionth of required Christian behavior, that it is no longer obligatory; that unless you can find some place or reference in the New Testament to something in the Old Testament, then you are not required to keep it.
   The point is, there is no New Testament evidence that tithing was ever rescinded. But how would we know just how to apply the tithing law in the traumatic twentieth century?
How Christ Speaks to Christians Today. How does Christ speak to His Church today? Notice Hebrews 1:1-3: "God, who at sundry times and in divers [different] manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; who being the brightness of his glory, and the express [character] image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high [a living Christ]."
   But what about questions and problems unique to a hypertechnical, supercomplex, technocratic space age? How does Christ speak to a Church that exists in the midst of a modern world with a different set of problems than those peculiar to the first century? Has Christ left twentieth-century Christians utterly without any on-course, on-target direction today?
   The four Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John record in painstaking detail many specific conversations between Jesus and Peter. But none is more important for God's Church today than the one quoted in Matthew 16:18-19. "And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell [Greek Hades, meaning the grave] shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee [Peter] the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."
   The authority of binding and loosing was perpetually given to the New Testament Church until Christ comes again to visibly take the reins of government both in the Church and in the world at large.
   Jesus Christ of Nazareth plainly said in verse 18 that the true Church would never die out. It was not dependent on Peter's perpetual existence; he died, as Christ prophesied, in painful martyrdom (John 21:18-19).
   And Matthew 16:19 clearly points out that those whom Christ appointed to lead the Church would have the right, the power and the authority to make those decisions necessary in giving every age or generation since the God-intended warning and witness.
Tithing has worked for human beings down through the centuries from Abraham to right now — and will continue to work for those who have the courage to step out on faith and exercise this great principle.
   And though Jesus Christ has remained at the helm — He is the Head of the Church today as much as He has ever been — He has clearly demonstrated that His awesome power and rule could work in and through His chosen human servants. In most cases these human servants were not and are not volunteers but mostly "unwilling draftees," at least at the start of their service. "You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you," said your Savior and mine.
How God's Servants Have Looked at Tithing. As clearly commanded in the New Testament (see Matt. 4:4; Luke 4:4; I Cor. 10:11; Rom. 15:4; II Tim. 3:15-16; John 5:39, etc.), Christ's servants today have taken a long, careful look at the Old Testament laws, principles and examples with regard to tithing. We have already seen a rather brief "word's-eye" summary of that view in the beginning pages of this article.
   Further, Christ's servants have noted their Savior's obviously deep-rooted belief in the Old Testament as a whole and the law of God in particular (see again Matt. 5:17-19). It is interesting that Christ clearly confirmed the very Old Testament miracles that modern religionists laugh at as hopeless myths.
   And deeply understanding that tithing is a vital part of God's giving principle (remember it is so stated in the Bible that tithing is giving a tenth), Christ's ministers have also noted that the principles of giving are completely consistent, crisscrossing both Old and New Testaments with an automatic blessing attached (see box on page 4).
   Since Christ was prophesied to "magnify the law, and make it honorable" (Isa. 42:21), God's servants have striven to see how this principle would apply to tithing.
   Returning to the "Sermon on the Mount" in the fifth chapter of Matthew, we have seen how Jesus carefully cautioned His disciples that He did not come to do away with God's law. Now notice verse 20 in context: "For I say unto you [the disciples then and now], That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven." Then Jesus went right on to explain by several examples how the spirit of the law far exceeded the letter requirements.
   But what was the "righteousness" of the Pharisees? All Bible students know that the Pharisees tithed; but did they really practice this financial principle in the right manner and so fulfill the fullest intent of God's natural law of giving?
   The answer is a resounding "No!" Notice Matthew 23:23: "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone."
   Strictly tithing a backyard garden is not the most important fulfillment of God's financial law. But Christ did not condemn them for doing even this. He said "not to leave the other undone."
   However, tithing was not and is not a catch-all principle. Blessings are not unconditionally promised to some few who may tithe (probably to the penny, making sure that God doesn't get a cent extra) and yet break every other principle and law of God, as well as declining to practice judgment, mercy and faith.
   Some people claim they are not blessed for tithing and herein lies an important reason. They are violating other laws and principles of God that are just as important. The tither must possess the giving attitude and put God first in his heart and mind as well as his pocketbook (see Matt. 6:33).
Tithing — A Living Law. Tithing is a living, natural law deeply rooted in the Bible and in the ecclesiastical and secular makeup of many nations in antiquity. Ancient Assyrians, Egyptians, Babylonians, Chinese and Greeks all practiced a form of tithing. Rulers and religious leaders of those nations either required or themselves paid a tenth of their produce or "spoils" to their particular "god."
   In more modern times, John D. Rockefeller, it is said, accepted at eight years of age God's challenge to prosper the individual who pays God His tenth. Mr. Colgate, the well-known soap manufacturer, apparently practiced the principle of tithing all the way from boyhood to his position as head of a great multi-million-dollar soap concern.
   The Bible is simply filled with statements of how the living natural law of giving (remember again tithing is giving a tenth) works automatically for the giver (see scripture box on page 4). It has worked for human beings all down through the centuries from Abraham to right now — and will continue to work for those who have the courage to step out on faith and exercise this great principle.
Tithing — An Act of Faith. Make no mistake about it, tithing is a test of faith! The first impulse of our innately carnal, selfish nature instantly balks at the very thought. Humanly we would rather give by impulse than by principle. But haphazard, hit or miss, do-it-when-you-feel-like-it giving misses the mark when it comes to actively supporting the very Work of the living God on this earth today!
   Money is often "the acid test" of a person's character. One author said: "If you know how a man deals with money, how he gets it, spends it, shares it, you know one of the most important things about him."
   I have often said that tithing is akin to prayer. Prayer to God is an offering of one's deepest heartfelt intent coupled with thanksgiving and gratitude. Tithing and giving of our material substance is exactly in the same category.
   The examples of men who have been greatly blessed for obeying just this one principle of God are too many, and too widely known and documented, to overlook! I have known, personally, of people who have been miraculously healed of illness immediately after they dropped a letter requesting an anointed cloth into their own private post box. The act of faith — though we had not yet received the letter, the cloth had not yet been sent — was instantly answered by God from heaven!
   I have known of others who, upon dropping their tithe and offering into the local post office, were met by a person who had owed them a debt for many, many years; a person they never expected to see again, and who told them, "Something just put it in my mind — I had to look you up and pay my debt."
   Experience has proved there is an automatic blessing in being obedient to our God in these great principles if the obedience is coupled with living faith!
   Tithing is like prayer — it is an act of faith in God! As such, it is the heart and core of what Christianity and conversion are all about.
   Tithing is a deeply personal act of worship when done in faith. It is an acknowledgment that God is there — that He really exists — and that He is able (sometimes in spite of all outward appearances) to " supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus."

The Giving Principle

   II Cor. 9:6, 7. "But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver."

   Acts 20:35. "It is more blessed to give than to receive." Deut. 16:17. "Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord thy God which he hath given thee."

   Luke 6:38. "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again."

   Prov. 3:9, 10. "Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: so shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine."

   Matt. 6:20,21. "But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

   Mal. 3:10. "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."

   Matt. 10:8. "Freely ye have received, freely give."

   Eccl. 11:1, 2. "Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days. Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth."

   Prov. 11:24,25. "There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself."

   Prov. 13:7. "There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing: there is that maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches."

   I Tim. 6:17-20. "The rich in this world... are to do good, to be rich in good deeds, liberal and generous, thus laying up for themselves a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of the life which is life indeed."

Should You Tithe?
   It is well known that tithing originated in the Old Testament times. But most people - among those who think about it at all - don't know whether tithing is required, or even desirable, today. For an in-depth explanation of the Bible's teaching on this subject, read the free booklet, TITHING.

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Good News MagazineFebruary 1976Vol XXV, No. 2
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