Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Tithing to Ourselves? Matt's recent AgapePress column

When we tithe - do we do so for ourselves, or others?


At 6:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your article here struck a note with me. For many years, I disagreed with my husband about his preference to give our tithe to families who needed money. I will not disagree anymore. Thanks for this reminder to minister to the needy!

At 9:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, this is really true! And the "prescription for growth" at the end of the article really does work. I have seen this from personal experience in churches. I used to attend a declining, more inward-focused church. That isn't to say that nothing was done for missions or helping others. Yet all the same, I can clearly see a difference now that I attend a healthy, active church. The primary focus is God's Word, and service to others and missions is strongly encouraged. And that doesn't simply mean sending dollars to mission organizations (though the ultimate goal is two-thirds of the total church budget sent to missions) - it also means that the people of the church themselves GIVE of their time and energy and GO forth to minister and witness, both to the local community and abroad.
And the sermons here are not simply bemoaning the condition of the world and of the church - they're simple yet solid teaching from the Bible, equipping people to actually go out and practice the lifestyle found in God's Word. People are happy to sit through 45 minutes of worship plus 45 minutes of sermon every week -and some stay through both services! The benefits of Biblical teaching and giving in a church are amazing!

At 12:16 PM, Anonymous Gaylon Vorwaller said...

At least one church excepted -- the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Dayu Saints (Mormons). Tithing funds are used for buildings and maintenance, but they have no paid clergy, no paid missionaries, and provide many millions of dollars each year in humanitarian aid all over the world. I always feel safe giving my tithe, because I know it has the least possible overhead, and will go to many good causes. And, with Katrina relief an example, church members gave over 40,000 man-days of relief assistance over the past two months, taking time off from work, etc. And, all members are expected to participate in home ministry to members of their congregations, and are encouraged to participate in other community service. Personally, I feel deficient in my Christ-like attitude and service, but I have plenty of opportunties offered through the church, and take advantage of as many as I can.

At 4:43 PM, Anonymous Olivia said...

My response to Matt Friedeman’s blog from Oct. 26, 2005: Tithing, Ourselves and Others.

Somebody is asking the wrong question. Giving has to do with society but tithing (the prescription for giving) has to do with self. Give: relinquish. Tithe: tenth.

We do not necessarily need or want a prescription for growth. Growth doesn’t automatically equal good. Growth: maturity, but a disease can mature. Growth: bigger, but a hurricane can get bigger.

Abundance is not necessarily bad. One must account for and accurately allocate any abundance. Abundance: extra. You don’t have to be afraid of abundance if you have discipline as a sounding board to prove your prescription.

BUT GOD, is giving me a prescription for financial balance through the limit of a tithe. Balance: good.

“Loosened pocketbooks” is a catch phrase that only sounds good to a Socialist, or a Liberal. I don’t want any loose people walking around. I want disciplined persons making choices out of the renewing of their mind. Discipline: obedience to a limit.

It is a discipline to tithe, tax (for those of you doing biweekly), tip and/or transfer (as in risk i.e. saving and securing) with your dollars.
If you know how to spend a dollar you know how to spend a million.

God offers us a prescription for a balance: not growth, not abundance, not loose pocketbooks, i.e. compassion. Offer: Not a command. Compassion: Pity. Balance: Good.

Is there anything worse than out of balance compassion?

It is the questions that flesh out the boundary or limit.

Tithe: a tenth part of…

Q: Tithe of what?
A: That is the question that started me down the road to an awesome answer.

Olivia Reese

At 8:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello. I live in southcentral MS and I am currently looking for a church that is very much into missions work. The church I have been going to for the past six years is a nice church but I shouldn't feel depressed over going to church on Sunday should I?Everybody says Jesus is Lord but goes about their workaholic lives never really caring what the Bible says we should be doing.I don't want to complain but I've been very stressed over this. I want to go to a Bible-believing,Bible-practicing church. Can anyone help me? I live in Jefferson Davis county but I am willing to drive to another county if necessary.Thanks so much.

At 1:42 PM, Blogger Mrs. D'Arcy said...

Thank you for your article. Giving is so crucial for the growth of God's church. Giving must be from the heart -- giving to God what is already God's and serving him. I think you made this point very clear that to grow in God we must give.

Tithing is a command and when we give we are blessed and others are blessed as well.

The person who said or implied that growth was not good is so off base! How could you not want to grow God's church!

God's church is winning souls for Christ so that they can go to Heaven and be with their Savior. Growth in God's church, a giving soul winning church is being obedient to God's Word. Shame on you!

In many countries outside the US God's church is growing so fast and multiplying. The people give of what they have.

I belong to a church that gives to Missions above and beyond. We also give to our community and yes our church is growing because of God's blessings.

I praise Jesus for hearts that give and give and give to God's work.

At 4:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had some problem accepting that David Ludwig, the 18 yr old who killed his girlfriend's parents last week, was a home-schooled Christian whose web page featured Christian rock.
But then I recalled the BTK serial killer tried this year who had been the president of his church's board. That had been troubling news for me as well until I found out that that church (Lutheran or derivative thereof) was working on developing a gender-neutral hymnal. I have always believed that any church that is following the agenda of the radical feminists (and gay agenda) has lost interest in following the teachings of Christ. God said: Because you are neither hot nor cold, I will spew you out of my mouth.
Think about the distortions that Christianity has gone thru over the past 35 years or so and the kind of people who now call themselves Christians but who would not have been believable before the 60s.

Today there are "Christian" churches that are no longer implementers of the teachings of Christ as the Son of God but rather implementers of these teachings as a secular ideology. Anyone who believes that this approach to Christianity works needs to view the film "Time Changers."

There is a way that seemeth right unto man but the end thereof are the ways of death.
Don Hank


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