Q. I have recently become legally separated and have to pay my wife maintenance (alimony), I am currently tithing on my gross income, which is a financial burden. Am I supposed to tithe on the money I pay my wife? Is she supposed to tithe on the amount she receives from me? If the answer to both questions is yes, isn’t this double tithing?
A. The Lord didn’t address this issue specifically, but look at it the way you look at your other expenses. You say you pay a tithe on your gross. If you pay a mechanic or baby sitter out of your income and that person tithes, you don’t consider it double tithing. If you and your spouse are living separate lives, it’s the same thing. You tithe on the money you receive and she tithes on the money she receives. And remember, if you’re trying to give as little as possible and still meet the minimum, then that’s the way you’ll be blessed.
If tithing on your gross is a financial burden then either your motives in tithing or your use of your money should be checked. And of course you know that the Lord can’t bless either one of you until you earnestly seek forgiveness for what ever you’ve done to cause this separation and for whatever ill feeling you harbor toward each other. You also have to be sure you’re doing everything possible to prevent this from ending in divorce.