What Does the Bible Say About Tithing? Is Tithing Biblical?

tithe

Whenever a church begins to talk about tithing, the rumbles begin…there they go, they just want your money.

Realize that this is a blog, not a church, and tithing is an important topic to write about. Your tithe goes to your church so even if you decide to tithe after reading this post, it will not be going to me anyway.

So I have no “dog in this fight” as the saying goes. 

Now, realize also, while you are not willing to give a tithe to a church, you are probably willing to give more than a tithe to your local retailer on Black Friday.

You don’t expect to the movie or fast food restaurant or local sports store or football game without paying money.

Yet, when it comes to God, people don’t want to give. The statistics prove that.

Why is it a big deal?

Well, if this nation overall, and enough people had been tithing, we probably would not have the problems that we have now.  Again, view the statistics.

To talk about any one topic in the Bible, it is important to step back for a moment and establish a framework. It does not matter whether the topic is tithing or any other Biblical topic.  Here is a principle.

Individuals and nations reap consequences for breaking God’s laws.

Somehow there is a disconnect when it comes to God.

People understand that if they break any kind of natural law, there is a consequence. That’s why there are safety rules. That’s why there are check lists, plans, procedures and even recipes. If one ingredient is left out of a recipe, the final result is not the same.

Yet when it comes to God’s laws, there is an assumption that there are no consequences for ignoring them or avoiding them.

Jesus died so people could be born again and begin to walk in the ways of the Kingdom of Heaven.

It doesn’t work saying, “I believe in Jesus,” and then ignore the rest of the Bible.

Biblical principles are still in forces and there are good and bad consequences accordingly.

Being born again is just a starting point.

Here are just a few scriptures out of many, many that could be picked showing that what we do, how we walk, matters.  We need to be born again, but how we walk also matters.

That’s why you read your Bible, pray, and go to church to learn more about how to walk.

Galatians 5:16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you won’t fulfill the lust of the flesh.

Romans 8:12 So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. 13 For if you live after the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are children of God.

 

So behavior matters, what we do matters.

This applies to tithing as well.

 

Bible Verses About Tithing – Tithing Scriptures

Where in the Bible does it talk about tithing?

Probably one of the most well known scriptures about tithing is in Malachi.

Malachi 3:7 From the days of your fathers you have turned away from my ordinances, and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,” says Yahweh of Armies. “But you say, ‘How shall we return?’ 8 Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me! But you say, ‘How have we robbed you?’ In tithes and offerings. 9 You are cursed with the curse; for you rob me, even this whole nation. 10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house, and test me now in this,” says Yahweh of Armies, “if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there will not be room enough for. 11 I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast its fruit before its time in the field,” says Yahweh of Armies. 12 “All nations shall call you blessed, for you will be a delightful land,” says Yahweh of Armies.

 

Matthew 23:23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cumin, and have left undone the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faith. But you ought to have done these, and not to have left the other undone.

 

Sometimes people think laws of the Old Testament no longer apply.

However, the principle is that in the New Testament, because a person can be born again and have the Holy Spirit on the inside to help, that the expectation is higher, not lower.

Matthew 5:27 “You have heard that it was said,  ‘You shall not commit adultery;’ 28 but I tell you that everyone who gazes at a woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her already in his heart.

 

 

There are those who don’t want to tithe, no matter what. But some of those same people may want to rush the sales on Black Friday and give to corporate America. For some reason, people don’t mind when corporate America asks for their money, but they do object to God asking for a tithe.

Matthew 6:19 “Don’t lay up treasures for yourselves on the earth, where moth and rust consume, and where thieves break through and steal; 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consume, and where thieves don’t break through and steal; 21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

22 “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is sound, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eye is evil, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You can’t serve both God and Mammon.

 

What is the definition of a tithe?

This is a standard definition.  In other words, if I asked you for a quarter of a pizza you would know what I mean, because everyone knows a quarter of a pizza is 1/4 of a pizza.  The definition of a tithe is standard as well.

A tithe means 1/10. If you have $100 dollars, a tithe is $10.
If you have one million dollars, a tithe is $100,000.
If you have a dime, a tithe is a penny.

A child who gives one penny out of a dime has proportionally given as much as a billionaire who gives $100 million out of a billion dollars.

God doesn’t have a system for billionaires to hide their assets or send them overseas, as can be done with earthly governmental systems. God knows who has what, who has tithed, and who hasn’t tithed and multi-billionaires can’t shift their assets around from nation to nation to avoid tithing the same way they avoid taxation.

Here’s another thought and this is just my observation (but it is also stated in the Malachi scripture itself) is that when a person won’t tithe…it will eventually catch up with that person one way or the other. The money they didn’t give as a tithe will be taken some way…a flat tire, an air conditioner that goes out, a lost job…something.

God promises a blessing for tithing. To not tithe is to put oneself under the curse. It just doesn’t pay to avoid or defer tithing.

You may get away with it for a long time, but the “wheels of God grind slowly, but grind exceedingly fine”.

Here are a some scriptures along that line.

Psalm 2:1 Why do the nations rage,
and the peoples plot a vain thing?
2 The kings of the earth take a stand,
and the rulers take counsel together,
against Yahweh, and against his Anointed,[a] saying,
3 “Let’s break their bonds apart,
and cast their cords from us.”
4 He who sits in the heavens will laugh.
The Lord[b] will have them in derision.
5 Then he will speak to them in his anger,
and terrify them in his wrath:

Proverbs 1:20 Wisdom calls aloud in the street.
She utters her voice in the public squares.
21 She calls at the head of noisy places.
At the entrance of the city gates, she utters her words:
22 “How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity?
How long will mockers delight themselves in mockery,
and fools hate knowledge?
23 Turn at my reproof.
Behold,[c] I will pour out my spirit on you.
I will make known my words to you.
24 Because I have called, and you have refused;
I have stretched out my hand, and no one has paid attention;
25 but you have ignored all my counsel,
and wanted none of my reproof;
26 I also will laugh at your disaster.
I will mock when calamity overtakes you,
27 when calamity overtakes you like a storm,
when your disaster comes on like a whirlwind,
when distress and anguish come on you.
28 Then they will call on me, but I will not answer.
They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me,
29 because they hated knowledge,
and didn’t choose the fear of Yahweh.
30 They wanted none of my counsel.
They despised all my reproof.
31 Therefore they will eat of the fruit of their own way,
and be filled with their own schemes.
32 For the backsliding of the simple will kill them.
The careless ease of fools will destroy them.
33 But whoever listens to me will dwell securely,
and will be at ease, without fear of harm.”

Galatians 6:7 Don’t be deceived. God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.

 

Here is another point about tithing.  Giving to the poor or giving to something like the Red Cross is not the same as tithing.  Giving alms, giving to the poor, is a separate kind of giving and has its own separate reward.  Tithing is giving to a church that preaches the gospel of Jesus Christ.  It does not apply to other kinds of giving.  Charitable giving is not the same as tithing.  That kind of giving is a separate study with separate scriptures.

Now your church may have an outreach to the poor and when you give to the church, a portion of that may go to the poor, but that is different than when you take what you would give as a tithe and giving it to your sister-in-law who can’t pay her rent.  People can have financial problems because they don’t tithe.  It is a downward spiral.

Maybe you don’t go to a church but you want to start tithing.

Here are some places to think about.

I am not putting direct links because the cynical will say…see, it is just for the money.

You can go Google some of these places and see where you would like to tithe.  It needs to be a church that preaches Jesus as Saviour and Lord and as the way, the truth, and the life.   It needs to preach “be born again“.  Not all churches do.  So be careful where you tithe.

Samaritan’s Purse…this is worldwide
Rhema Bible Church…this has an actual online church
Christ for all Nations…this is an outreach, particularly to Africa, with a church in Florida
Morris Cerullo World Evangelism…this has a school of ministry
Marilyn and Sarah…they are on Christian television

And there are many others. Tithe to the places where you go to church and get your spiritual food.

And remember, if you haven’t tithed, but are thinking of spending a whole lot of money on Black Friday, rethink that. Set your spiritual house in order.

Matthew 6:33 But seek first God’s Kingdom and his righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well.

 

Tithing is not a one time event. It is an ongoing way of life.

It’s like a diet or a exercise routine.  Neither are one time events if you want ongoing results.  Tithing is the same.  It is a way of life.

Tithe out of every income you get, and tithe first, before you do anything else. Tithing is in time as well as first in money.


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