Q. Tithing is a very contradicting doctrine in many churches. Many congregations use this system to pay for all the expenses required to manage a local church. Is it really supported with New Testament biblical verses?
I use to tithe according to the Law of Moses. Today I do not tithe. I am part of the only true church, which is the body of Christ. At the time of Jesus the church was not revealed, but He knew that the administration of the church would be different. There would be no leadership structure, every body would have specific duties and responsibilities within the church and all would accept Jesus as the head of the church.
There was no tithing in the early church within the gentile church. Paul never received tithe to support his ministry. He worked. Voluntary donation is what it is taught through the New Testament. Too many are and have been deceived by the false gospel of prosperity. People are only giving because they want to receive. If someone in the church does not prosper many conclude that there is a sin that is not forgiven. You have taught me a great deal. Yet tithing seems to be misunderstood.
A. You’re correct, the whole concept of giving is misunderstood, and I fear you’ve misunderstood it as well. If giving is not done solely out of gratitude for what the Lord has given you, then it serves no purpose. Luke 6:38 says that with the measure you use in giving, blessings will be measured out to you. In other words, stingy givers are saying they aren’t very grateful and therefore they’ll receive stingy blessings.
Paul wrote that the Lord loves a generous giver, and that God’s purpose in granting us wealth is so we can be generous in giving to others (2 Cor. 9:7,11), not so we can live like spoiled children. Generosity demonstrates both gratitude and faith. You won’t be generous with what you have unless you are grateful for it and have faith that you will be given more.
The Lord did promise us an abundant life. (John 10:10) But those who use this to teach the so-called prosperity gospel are appealing to greed, not to gratitude. Giving with the expectation of getting back more than you’ve given is an expression of greed and will not bring you blessing.
And churches that demand your money to pay for their operating costs are trying to create an obligation, which breeds resentment. In my experience, those who focus on meeting the spiritual needs of their members and don’t say much about money seem to be better off financially than those who dwell on it.
How the money we give is used becomes the responsibility of those who receive it. But on a personal level, the only giving that God will bless is that which is given purely out of gratitude for what we’ve received in the past with no expectation of future reward.
I’m sorry that you’ve had such a bad experience in the past, and that it’s hardened your heart toward giving. Please try to understand that people who really understand God’s purpose for giving tend to be the world’s most generous givers, in proportion to their incomes. Many give well beyond the tithe and would never consider changing their giving habits. In fact, they pray for opportunities to give more.