Financial worries today plague almost everyone. The struggle to make ends meet is one of the greatest problems of the average person or family today. There is a reason, and yet most people don't know anything about that reason. They don't realize it at all. You can be free from it. There are laws that govern even your finances.
The World Tomorrow, the Worldwide Church of God, presents Herbert W. Armstrong, an internationally recognized ambassador for world peace, visiting prominent leaders around the globe, discussing the cause of world problems and proclaiming the good news of the World Tomorrow. Ladies and gentlemen, Herbert W. Armstrong.
Now, just as there are laws of gravity that pull anything down—if I lift something and let loose, gravity pulls it down—there are laws of inertia; when it hits the bottom, it stops—laws of physics and chemistry. God Almighty created those laws. He keeps them in motion. They're active, they're not dead, they're living, they're active, and God sustains them and keeps them going. Everything, not only inert matter but energies, and all these laws were created by the great creator God, and also He created along with them a financial law, and most people don't understand that law. And if you understand it, you can prosper, you can rid yourself of financial worries, and people who do understand it don't have these financial worries.
Now, it's very important that we understand this. Most people are very jealous of their own earnings, their own money. They say, "Well, what I earn is mine. It's nobody's business what I do with it." But is your income, the money you earn, isn't really your own. God Almighty says it isn't. And He's going to dispute you on that. You need to know some of these laws that God himself has set in motion. He says that your money and everything belong to Him. God Almighty is the creator. He's the creator of matter, He's the creator of force of energy, of your mind, of all the energies that you have, of the material that you work with, of everything that you produce. And He also is the sustainer who keeps these laws active and in motion.
I'd like to have you notice what God says in Psalm 24:1: God says, "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof, the world and everyone that dwells in it, even the people, the matter, all force and energy belong to God. He sustains it. He keeps it in motion."
Now again, in the New Testament in I Corinthians 10:26, it says, "For the earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof." Then also go to Deuteronomy 10:14, " Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens is the Lord's." By God, the earth with all that there is in it. Then again, in the 50th Psalm verses 10 to 12 (Psalm 50:10-12), again God is speaking: "For every beast of the forest is mine," God says, "and the cattle upon a thousand hills," and continuing, "I know all the fowls of the mountains, and the wild beasts of the field are mine." Most people don't realize how everything belongs to God. He created it, He made it, He sustains it, He keeps it going. He gives you the breath you breathe, He gives you the energy that you expand, He gives you the mind that you're using and thinking.
Now, in Haggai, the second chapter, verse eight (Haggai 2:8), once again says God, "The silver is mine, and the gold is mine," saith the Lord of hosts. So, your money is His. Everything is His. Now dare anyone dispute this claim of the Almighty Creator. He could stop your breath in a second, but He's a God of love and He doesn't do it. But God is a God of love. He knows your need, and He wants you to prosper. Now, that's a thing that many people don't understand. You hear a lot of people talking about God's poor as if God wants everyone to be poor, and it's wrong to be rich. God doesn't hate the rich and love only the poor. God loves everybody, and it is God's will that everybody should prosper. But there are laws that govern your success, that govern your prosperity, and those who have followed those laws are prosperous.
Now, before I came into the ministry, in my early age, I was dealing with executive heads, presidents, board chairman of the great industrial corporations of the Middle West and the East in the United States. And I noticed the principles that they used in succeeding and making money. And now they didn't have to worry about making ends meet because they had money and they were successful. I've written a booklet that I'm gonna mention later on, "The Seven Laws of Success." I'd like to have you write for that. I'd like to give you a copy, and there's no, it's just entirely without obligation, no charge, no follow up, no request for money. I'd like to just give it to you. I learned the laws by which those men were successful and didn't have to worry about money. Now, they weren't all of them altogether successful, understand, because they didn't know enough about God and they were violating other laws, and their money didn't always make them happy. Money alone won't make you happy. Sometimes they were very miserable if they had a lot of money. Most people think if they just had enough money, they'd have no worries at all. That's all. And that seems to be all that so many people think about; they think that happiness comes from having enough money. That's not true.
Now, the lack of money and poverty can be very uncomfortable. But God wants you to have success in every way, happiness and joy as well as financial success. And the man that God has blessed, you read in the Bible, God has prospered, and He wants to prosper you. He wants to prosper us all. But there are laws that govern this, and they govern a lot more than just money. They govern your entire happiness and success in life and everything that gives you a sense of fullness and a sense of really living, in a sense of joy.
God supplies the earth, and everything we have comes out of the earth. God supplies the water, the sun, and everything that goes into the production of wealth, the making of money, and everything comes out of God's earth. God supplies it all, really, but He only demands 10% of it back from you, and He promises to reward you if you pay him that 10%. And I said "pay" and not "give" because it is a law, and you break that law if you don't pay it. God demands 10% of your income, but He is a God of love, and He promises to make the 90% that is left to you multiply into more than the entire 100% if you withhold it. And withhold God's 10%? A lot of people don't understand that. Some people say, "Well, I can't afford to tithe and to pay that 10%." But they just don't understand, they can't afford not to because they don't have God back of them to prosper them. And that is one of the things necessary if you're going to succeed.
Now, why does God demand 10%? First, let me explain what tithe is. The Bible uses the word "tithe." Tithe, it's not an English word, but it means 10%. It's a 10% of your gross income that you owe to God. Many people think they can't afford to, and they look on it as giving, it's not giving, it's paying. That's paying back to God for letting you have the use of His earth, of His water, of your own mind and brain that He keeps going, the breath that you breathe to give you the energy to work and to produce whatever you do.
But how does God use that 10%? He uses it for human good, not for Himself. He doesn't need it. He has everything anyways, not for God. He uses it to help people. People need knowledge, and they need knowledge of how to be happy. They need knowledge of how to be successful, and they need knowledge of how to gain eternal life because you only have a temporary existence. You don't have eternal life if you think you do. You've been kidding yourself. You have only a temporary existence, but God wants to give you eternal life. He wants to give you prosperity here and now and then give you eternal life and happiness and joy and everything that God has and to share everything He has with Him. And that is everything.
Now, God's financial law is administered and always has been by a priesthood that is in the ministry. Now, way back in ancient times, there was a priesthood that was called the Melchizedek priesthood. That's way before ancient Israel. Abraham, who was the father of all Israelites, by 400 and some years, the nation of Israel started about 430 years after Abraham. But Abraham knew about that priesthood, and he paid tithes, 10% of everything that he received, to the high priest whose name was Melchizedek. Now, Melchizedek was God's high priest, and that's the way he paid tithe to God through God's high priest. And in ancient times, the priesthood was Melchizedek. Now, Melchizedek was of the same rank as Jesus Christ. In fact, there's reason to believe it was Jesus Christ before Christ was born as a human being. He had exactly the same rank without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days nor end of life. Now, that's speaking about God. Only God is like that, and this Melchizedek was, but he was the high priest. Well, then when the nation of Israel was started under Moses 430 years after Abraham, God set a priesthood within the nation of Israel.
Now, they were just a nation, a national nation among other nations in the world. God did not give them His Holy Spirit. They had no promise of salvation or eternal life as we talk of it today. But as Abraham had paid tithes to Melchizedek, God had a priesthood in ancient Israel, and it was the Levitical priesthood. Now, God chose the priesthood just as He chooses the priesthood in the ministry in the church today. But that priesthood was a Levitical priesthood. In other words, God took one of the 12 tribes of Israel, the tribe of Levi, and made them priests. God decided who the priests would be, and the tithes were paid into that priesthood of the priests. Now, their ministry was not preaching the gospel. Their ministry was a physical ministry. They were a physical national nation. They not only had the law of God, that is a spiritual law that regulates our conduct with our neighbors and our relationship with God himself. But God had given ancient Israel many other laws, rituals, and meat and drink offerings, animal sacrifices, things they had to do morning, noon, and night, physical things had nothing to do with how you get along with a neighbor or your relationship to God. But those laws, those rituals, works of the law, they're called in the books of Romans and Galatians, meaning physical work, not spiritual obedience or spiritual goodness or righteousness. And they were to teach the Ancient Israelites the habit of obedience. Now, they were only a substitute for God's Holy Spirit. And when the Holy Spirit came, the substitute was gone. And those rituals or works of the law were abolished after the New Testament church started.
Now, all that time in Ancient Israel, tithes were paid to the Levitical priesthood to support their materialistic ministry. It was not a gospel ministry or a spiritual ministry. In Israel, there was no gospel, and yet it was a church. And actually, in the New Testament, it's called the church in the Wilderness. In the Old Testament, it is called the congregation of Israel. And the word congregation has the same meaning as the word church in a sense; it's a group of people that are called out. Specially, Jesus came and founded the church. He said, "I will build my church," and that church still exists. You need to know where it is today. The original church that Jesus started, but He put a priesthood in the church, the New Testament Church, and that priesthood, Jesus Christ is the head of the church, but He also is the high priest. When Ancient Israel was raised up as a nation, the priesthood was changed from the Melchizedek priesthood to the Levitical priesthood.
Now, when Jesus started the New Testament church, the priesthood was changed once again to the priesthood of Jesus Christ. He is the high priest today. So, there was a change now in the priesthood and the tithe that would be paid into the priesthood. So, there's a change made in where the tithes are to go and where God directs it.
Now, the Great Commission said, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel," and it is a spiritual gospel, not physical. As I said in the Old Testament, Ancient Israel had a materialistic ministry and just ministering physically to the people. It was not a spiritual ministry that didn't preach the gospel as the ministry does today. But today it costs money to proclaim the gospel. God said to the apostles, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel." Now gospel means good news. Christ came with a good news, and it is news. He was a newscaster, but it was future news. It was news of the Kingdom of God, and that news has not been preached. Men have been preaching a gospel about Jesus Christ and their own gospel, the gospel of men, but a gospel about Christ. The gospel to be preached is the gospel of Christ. And that's his gospel. The gospel he proclaimed, it's proclaimed on this program. And I dare say, you don't hear it on any other, and you might think that over that is something to think about.
But today it costs money to send out the gospel. It takes modern facilities in the modern day like we are living in today. Now in I Corinthians 9:14, I'd like you to notice what God says: "But speaking of the priesthood now of Jesus Christ, even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel in the New Testament should live of the gospel," just as the priests of the Old Testament did by the tithing system. Now again in Hebrews 7:5, "And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, that was in ancient Israel, who received the office of the priesthood, had a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law." Now it was a law, and there is a financial law, and that is God's law.
Now continuing in verse 12, "For the priesthood being changed, it was changed from Melchizedek into the Levitical priesthood. Now, it's changed once again into the priesthood of Jesus Christ. The priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change of the law, a change in the law regarding tithing. So, the tithes today are paid into the priesthood of Jesus Christ, to the true church of Christ, and the true ministers of Christ serving in that church.
Now, God's financial law makes possible this very program. Did you ever wonder? I, I, did you ever notice programs that are, I think generally classified as religious programs on television, that this is one program that never asks the public for money. We believe in the tithing system, and God's people understand that, and they do tithe. We don't have to ask the public for money. We offer you things, and we send them gratis, no charge, no follow up, no request for money. And I don't think you know any other program that does that.
Now there's one other scripture that I want to read to you, and it's in Malachi (Malachi) chapter 3 verses 8 to 10 (Malachi 3:8-10). And here's the question: "Will a man rob God? Would you rob God? Would you be a thief and actually steal from God?" That's the question. Now, this is not pulling any punches. This is pretty frank. Now listen, this is the word of God: "Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed me. But you say, 'Well, where have we robbed you?' And God answers: 'In tithes that's the 10% that you owe, first 10% of gross of your earnings in tithes and offerings.' God expects you to give some freewill offerings in addition. Now, that does not necessarily need to be anywhere near as much as 10%, but that depends on you, your generosity, your circumstances, and your condition."
Continuing on, you are cursed with a curse for you have robbed me, even this whole nation. Now, that is speaking of our nation, the United States of America. Today, we print on our money, "In God we trust," but we don't, and we don't pay God's tithe, and this whole nation is under a curse. And that's why we're having the troubles that we're having today. And it's time we wake up and understand what is wrong, as there is a cause for every effect. And we need to know what is causing these troubles.
God is a God of love, and He wants the nation to prosper. He wants every one of us as individuals to prosper and to have plenty. And if we follow His laws faithfully and obey Him, we will prosper, we'll have plenty, and we will also be happy and we will enjoy life.
Now continuing, He says, "Bring you all of the tithes into the storehouse." The storehouse is God's church, and Christ is the high priest over that church and the head of it. That there may be meat in my house, God's house, and prove me now herewith says the Lord, the Lord of hosts. If I will not open up the windows of heaven and pour you out a blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it. If you pay your tithes, God will bless that 90% of what is left there won't be room enough to receive it. I wonder if you know that.
Well, I remember years ago when I was younger, the richest man in the world was supposed to be John D. Rockefeller. He was a tithe payer, and many of the richest men were tithe payers. And that's one reason that they had all that they do. Now in Matthew 6:21, "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." If you put some of your money in the work of God, your heart will be there. And that's where your heart needs to be if you're going to have the blessings of God and have prosperity and happiness and everything that goes with it.
Well, I'm running out of time, so I'm going to stop there. I once again want to mention this booklet, many thousands, hundreds of thousands of people have read it, "The Seven Laws of Success.". I wrote that booklet after having had personal contact and knowledge of the great and the near-great of the United States, the captains of industry who didn't have financial worries and how they succeeded, but how they could have succeeded even better, and how you can.
Now, here's another booklet, "Ending Your Financial Worries", "Ending Your Financial Worries", and then "The Plain Truth" magazine, the finest magazine in the world. There's no subscription price, there's no charge for anything. We have no request for money. "The Plain Truth" magazine, I won't have time to go through many of the things that are in it, but it is a magazine dealing with world conditions and world news, and explaining world news and where were going from here, what is going to happen in the future according to biblical prophecy and analyzing world news in that light and also family conditions, family troubles, everything that you need highly illustrated, a magazine with a circulation larger than any of the news magazines, larger than most regular commercial magazines in the world. Over 7 million copies monthly, read by people all over the world. Write in for those booklets, and we'll also give you a year's subscription to "The Plain Truth." No charge. You just send your request to meet Herbert W Armstrong at Pasadena California. That's all the address you need. Herbert W Armstrong Pasadena California 91123 or go to the telephone and you dial 800-423-4444. Jot that down. You dial eight hundreds of free call, just dial 800-423-4444. And if the lines are busy, try again. So, until next time, this is Herbert W Armstrong. Goodbye. Friends.
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