Tithing is the practice of giving one-tenth of one’s income or possessions to God. The first tithe recorded in the Bible was given by Abraham to Melchizedek, king of Salem. The next biblical mention of a tithe is when Jacob made a vow to God, saying, “…of all that you give me I will give you a tenth.” The Lord God commanded the Israelites to “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house….” (Malachi 3:10)
The tithe, therefore, is a component of the Mosaic Law which was never restated as part of the law of Christ. While not requiring a tithe of believers today, the New Testament does speak of God’s blessing on those who give generously to the needs of the church and especially to those who labor in the Word.
Christians may not subject themselves to the Old Testament law of the tithe. Instead, they should give according to the following four New Testament guidelines. Christian giving should be:
1- Proportional to one’s income (1 Corinthians 16:2, 2 Corinthians 8:12)
2-Consistent (1 Corinthians 16:2)
3-Sacrificial (Mark 12:43-44, 2 Corinthians 8:2-3)
4-Cheerful (2 Corinthians 9:7)
How much one should tithe?
Each Christian should give what he has decided in his own heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Corinthians 9:7) No set amount or percentage of income is dictated, rather, if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.” (2 Corinthians 8:12)
Giving less than the tithe?
Giving less than a tithe of ten percent is simply not an option.
May be you believe the tithe was an Old Testament standard, and we’re no longer under the law but under grace, so tithing isn’t a requirement for us. Studies show the average Christian gives only just over 2% of his income to the Lord, unlike the Jews who still give a total of 23% to the Lord, make sense why they prosper!!!!!!!
3 reasons commonly given for not tithing are-
1-Why should I pay to the church? They have plenty of money. See, God doesn’t need your bribe. It is ones obligation.
2-How can I pay the tithe, if I am in debt, must pay off my debts first or also other important things in my life to pay for. Why you are in debt in the first place? Is God responsible for your unwise or self-serving decisions that may have put you there? And even if you have come into debt, isn’t your first debt to God? If we obey God and make good our obligations to Him, He will help us as we seek to pay off our debts to others.
3- “I can’t afford to tithe.” Of course you can. What if your salary was reduced by 10%? Would you die?
Scripture makes clear that in many cases God blesses us financially when we generously give (Proverbs 11:24-25; Luke 6:38).Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously” (2 Corinthians 9:6).
When God prospers us in this way it is not merely to give us new toys and more beautiful homes but to allow us to give still more: “You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion” (2 Corinthians 9:11). God’s extra provision is usually not intended to raise our standard of living, but to raise our standard of giving.
“Shovel out the money, and God shovels it back to you-because God has a bigger shovel.”
As God miraculously stretched the oil and bread of the widow in Elisha’s day, and as He made the clothes and sandals of the children of Israel last forty years in the wilderness, I am convinced He sometimes graciously work in unexpected ways in our life.
We should thank God for His behind-the-scenes provision, including preventing accidents, illness, expensive hospital bills and incidents that would have been very costly. We need to give careful thought to our ways, and ask ourselves if we would do better to give more to the Lord and ask Him to maximize what we keep, rather than trying to hang onto more, only to have it leak out our pockets
No matter how much we give, we can never out-give God.