TITHES AND OFFERINGS
DEFINITION: The biblical definition of tithing is setting aside for the work of the Lord a tenth of all one earns or receives. Offerings are special gifts above the tithe that are given to the work of the Lord.
FACTS ABOUT TITHES AND OFFERINGS:
The first record of tithing was when Abraham paid tithe to Melchizedek (Genesis 14:20).
Tithing was not just done under Old Testament law. Abraham’s tithing was done more than 400 years before the law was given. New Testament believers also tithed and gave offerings from their income (1 Corinthians 16:2. See also Luke 18:12-13).
Tithes and offerings are important to God. If a person fails to tithe, it is considered robbing God: “Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ In tithes and offerings” (Malachi 3:8.).
You can borrow from the tithe, but if you do you must include 20% interest when you repay it (Leviticus 27:31).
God blesses those who tithe. Those who do not tithe are under a curse: “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 floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it” (Malachi 3:9-10).
DEALING WITH TITHES AND OFFERINGS:
Ask God to forgive you if you have not been tithing. The prophet admonished the people to consider their ways, repent, and renew their covenant of tithing with the Lord (Haggai 1:5-11).
Set aside 10% of all you earn to give to the work of the Lord. Do this first before you pay any bills or spend money on anything else. In some cultures, as in Old Testament times, people tithe off of the produce of their land when there is no monetary exchange operative.
Set aside funds above your tithe to give as offerings to special works: Missions, the poor, specialized ministries, etc.
WHAT GOD’S WORD SAYS ABOUT TITHES AND OFFERINGS:
A tithe of everything from the land, whether grain from the soil or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord. If a man redeems any of his tithe, he must add a fifth of the value to it. (Leviticus 27:30-31)
Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine. (Proverbs 3:9-10)
Consider your ways (and set your mind on what has come to you). Now therefore thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider your ways (and set your mind on what has come to you). You have sown much, but you have reaped little; you eat, but you do not have enough; you drink, but you do not have your fill, you clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; and he who earns wages has earned them to put them in a bag with holes in it…You looked for much (harvest), and it came to little; and even when you brought that home, I blew it away. Why? says the Lord of hosts. Because of My house which lies waste, while you yourselves run each man to his own house (eager to build and adorn it). Therefore the heavens above you (for your sake) withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its produce. And I have called for a drought upon the land and the hill country, upon the grain, the fresh fruit juice, the oil, upon what the ground brings forth, upon men and cattle, and upon all the (wearisome) toil of men’s hands. (Haggai 1:5-6, 9-11, AMP)
“The silver is mine and the gold is mine,” declares the Lord Almighty. (Haggai 2:8)
“Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. But 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 floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.” (Malachi 3:8-10)
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Matthew 6:33)
Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. (Luke 6:38)
…The Lord Jesus himself said: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)
On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income…(1 Corinthians 16:2)
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work (2 Corinthians 9:6-8)
(See also “Finances” in this database. For detailed teaching regarding finances obtain the Harvestime International Network publication entitled “Divine Provision” available at http://www.harvestime.org)