TITHING IS A CHRISTIAN METHOD OF GIVING
By: Lee Stoffel
Tithing is a Christian method of giving.
Not the Christian method of giving. Tithing is a Christian method of giving. It solves the problem, for one thing, of how much shall I give? No comparisons are necessary with what anyone else gives. The tither can hold up his head with any man. The tither becomes the steward of a separated portion which he administers for His Lord. No one tells that tither how he should administer that tithe. That is between him and the Lord. Just as no one tells him how to figure that tithe. That also is between him and his Lord. We Christians believe that we are stewards not only of the ten per cent but of the other ninety per cent as well and how we administer our total affairs is a matter of importance and is a matter between us and God.
Tithing is a Christian approach to giving.
It is systematic. It is proportionate. Always above the Christian tithe is this principle; “To whom much is given, from him shall much be required” …and this principle; “As God has prospered”. This means that for many people the tithe is not enough. It means that many people who would give the tithe would really be getting off easy.
The Christian principle is as God has prospered… and Jesus said “To whom much is given, from him shall much be required”. It is in this context that we place the tithe and the Christian approaches his direct stewardship obligations to God. The tithe – is the minimum. For some it should not be the minimum… for some it should be more… for others in certain circumstances, it should be less. This is something for every person to go to his Lord in sincere prayer and examine himself and make a decision.
The trouble is that many, many Christians never approach this matter of giving in any kind of systematic and proportionate way. They decide on a certain amount which looks large but when it is broken down proportionately to income and proportionately to what we do for ourselves and proportionately to what we earn, it is sometimes very, very small.
Tithing is satisfying.
I do not think anyone should tithe from a selfish motive of buying God’s favors or as a kind of “Spiritual Life Insurance”. No one ought to stand and promise that if you tithe you are going to be immediately rewarded for it. I have never heard a tither say that he has ever suffered from tithing! I have tithed and I have knowledge that God has given me back far more than I have ever given to him and I have never suffered for having done it. I have heard tithers say that over and over again. It is satisfying and there
is a sense in which God opens the windows of heaven and pours down a blessing on you. Usually you realize that God opened those windows a long time ago and that you have stood in God’s blessings all along.
The tithe is not for one who likes to compare himself with somebody else. Jesus had some very sharp words to say to the Pharisees and the Pharisees were tithers. They tithed but they neglected some of the weightier matters of the law in the eyes of Jesus. Some people in the Church think they are better than others because they do certain things others do not do, or they do not do certain things others do.
Simple personal testimony is the thing that is in order. Ask a person who tithes what they think about it. There is truth in what Malachi said “Prove me now said the Lord if I will not open the windows of heaven and pour you out a blessing which you are not able to contain.”
Tithing is important.
The thing that is important is not how much money we give. If every Christian tithed, the Church would have no more concern about money from that day forward. The important thing is what happens to the man who does. Something happens. Something happens to that man and to his relationship with God. Something that follows him all of his days. Dr. Robert E. Speer once said “I think every man will find as all who have passed through the experience can testify, that the acceptance of a principle like this makes
a distinct era of spiritual enlargement, in his life.”
Until the grace of God takes hold of a man’s heart, he does not know, no matter how much he gives, what it really means to be a Christian Steward. Until a man realizes that he has been saved by the grace of God, and by no other, he has yet to be a steward, no matter whether he tithes or no matter how much he gives.
Tithing in a Christian Context.
I am not saying that if you do not tithe, you are not a Christian. I am saying that I think we Christians ought to face this matter of tithing in a Christian context. I think we ought to think about it. We ought to talk with each other about it. Husbands and wives ought to discuss it. Families ought to discuss it. We ought to come to grips with it. We ought to make a decision. Consider the tithe.
(The above material was published by Neibauer Press, Inc. Warminster, PA.)
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