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Tithes and Offerings

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“God has from the beginning provided a means of financing his program through voluntary giving (offerings) and assessments called “Tithes”. Contrary to the opinion of many, Tithes did not begin with the “Law”, but was practiced by Abraham 430 years before the law (Gen.14:18-20) and continued on through Jacob (Gen.28:20-22) and finally though Levi (law) and the Levitical Priesthood. God employs the principle of “Offerings” when instructing Moses how to get the materials to build the tabernacle (Exod. 25:1-8) and later Solomon’s Temple. The subject of “Tithes & Offerings” is widely practiced but often misunderstood as to its purpose and applications according to the scriptures.”

 

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By Harry L. Herman

God has from the beginning provided a means of financing his program through voluntary giving (offerings) and assessments called “Tithes”. Contrary to the opinion of many, Tithes did not begin with the “Law”, but was practiced by Abraham 430 years before the law (Gen.14:18-20) and continued on through Jacob (Gen.28:20-22) and finally though Levi (law) and the Levitical Priesthood. God employs the principle of “Offerings” when instructing Moses how to get the materials to build the tabernacle (Exod. 25:1-8) and later Solomon’s Temple. The subject of “Tithes & Offerings” is widely practiced but often misunderstood as to its purpose and applications according to the scriptures. This portion of our Study Guide divides the subject matter of Tithes & Offerings into two distinct sections. The first section will deal with “TIMES” covering the definition and purpose according to the scriptures. The second section will cover “OFFERINGS” and how they are used.

It is obvious that one can not pay tithes or give offerings unless there is some manner of “INCOME” provided for the individual. This income may be money or wages, interest from investments, Social Security and welfare checks, bonuses, produce from the fields (farming), live stock (cattle , sheep etc.) or anything that represents an increase to the individual. In biblical times tithes consisted of things harvested, increases in the flocks and herds and money from the sale of their produce as well as wages. Today, tithes and offerings are almost always paid in the currency of the time and it is the exception to the rule to use commodities as the medium of exchange. As we begin the first thing that must be established is, it is God who makes it possible for us to get wealth and is responsible for any increase one may enjoy. All that we possess in reality belongs to God and He expects us to be faithful stewards over His things. “And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shaft remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.” Deut. 8:17-18 Because of Him one has the strength, health and opportunity to get and hold a job. It is because of Him the fields and trees provide a harvest and live stock reproduces to provide for us our needs.

In the final analysis, God owns everything and all we are able to enjoy is on “loan from Him” who provides for our daily needs. “The earth is the LORD’s, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.” Psa. 24:1 “For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is mine, and the fulness thereof ” Psa. 50:10-12 And finally, “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life. ” 1 Tim.6:17-19 As these scriptures teach us, God is the owner, controller and generator of all that exists. These things are given to man for him to enjoy, but at the same time man has the obligation and responsibility to act as a good steward over God’s abundant blessings. We are admonished not to put our trust in corruptible material things, for God can reclaim them as easy as He can provide them. He expects us to honor and give Him glory for the blessings we receive and one way to do this is to honor Him with our tithes and offerings.

 

To View the Entire Article, Click Here

To Download the Article Directly to Your Computer, Click Here

To View the Outline, Click Here

To View the PowerPoint, Click Here

 

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