Tithing vs Giving

Tithing is an interesting paradigm that has been redefined and expounded upon into oblivion. The plethora of teachings about the tithe has become so butchered and ground up into an unrecognizable, bloody mess that it no longer has any distinguishable form.

The law of God that defined and governed the tithe stipulated these things (this is not an exhaustive dissertation):

* The tithe was only a tenth from the flocks, herds, orchards, vineyards and fields.
* The tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages, such as the wages earned by the men hired to harvest the crops, orchards and vineyards.
* The tithe was never a tenth of processed products such as every tenth chair or table made by a carpenter (hint, hint), or every tenth pair of shoes from the cobbler, or every tenth yard of woven material from clothiers and weavers, etc.
* The tithe was a part of the written law of God, and therefore inseparable from the rest of the written law.

The tithe does not predate the law to the time of Abraham because:

* Abraham gave a tenth of the spoils of war he is never said to have ever repeated, and never had it in his mind to keep what he knew was originally not his own property since we know that he intentionally brought it all back to the original owners who may very well have died without its return.
* The nation of Israel never, throughout her whole history, mimicked what Abraham did with the spoils of war.
* Abraham's tithe is not a principle the Lord demanded or even hinted that the rest of humanity should follow, especially given that his personal wealth was still located in northern Canaan at the time he met up with Melchizedek (nobody in their right mind took along all their wealth on a mission of war), so Melchizedek received not one red cent of Abraham's personal wealth so far as we know.

Giving is the only principle established by Paul to the Church, based upon no preconceived threshold of a percentage or anything else false teachers demand from their pulpits. Paul never taught that the primary portion of one's giving was to be rightfully utilized for the support of dead buildings, programs, materials, carpeting, parking lots, chandeliers, stained glass windows, et al.

The primary portion demonstrated in scriptures all went for the meeting of needs first and foremost, but modern, western practices have the primary portion funneled into the facility and staffing before anything is used for the meeting of needs and missions (according to a Christianity Today article from the 1990's).

Now, I'm not saying that a group of professing believers don't have the right to possess communal property where they can meet together in the luxuries of comforts, but when they elevate that ownership to the level of requirement and an alleged measure by which they assume is God's prescribed model for what a real local church should look like, that's where I draw the line. The Church is people, whether they are a part of some grouping with a communal building with or without religious exercises.

The day is fast approaching in these last days that possession of communal property for religious exercise will come to a close for those that refuse to tout the worldly ways and values.

Besides, I never could master the art of fellowshipping with the backs of other people's heads...

MM
 
I would say that tithing is a matter of conviction and for as long as
my family have tithed 10% of every dollar into our account we have
yet to have a financial need that could not be met. As for giving, I would
say that that is a heart condition and we should always be ready to
provide assistance as much we are able.

This is not my teaching or advising you as to what the reader should
do but only what we do. There is clear teaching of giving tithes and
Israel was actually judged for robbing God of the tithes (Malachi 3:8).
God can defend himself in this matter though.
 

bobinfaith

Senior Moderator
Staff member
Senior Moderator
Tithing is an interesting paradigm that has been redefined and expounded upon into oblivion. The plethora of teachings about the tithe has become so butchered and ground up into an unrecognizable, bloody mess that it no longer has any distinguishable form.

The law of God that defined and governed the tithe stipulated these things (this is not an exhaustive dissertation):

* The tithe was only a tenth from the flocks, herds, orchards, vineyards and fields.
* The tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages, such as the wages earned by the men hired to harvest the crops, orchards and vineyards.
* The tithe was never a tenth of processed products such as every tenth chair or table made by a carpenter (hint, hint), or every tenth pair of shoes from the cobbler, or every tenth yard of woven material from clothiers and weavers, etc.
* The tithe was a part of the written law of God, and therefore inseparable from the rest of the written law.

The tithe does not predate the law to the time of Abraham because:

* Abraham gave a tenth of the spoils of war he is never said to have ever repeated, and never had it in his mind to keep what he knew was originally not his own property since we know that he intentionally brought it all back to the original owners who may very well have died without its return.
* The nation of Israel never, throughout her whole history, mimicked what Abraham did with the spoils of war.
* Abraham's tithe is not a principle the Lord demanded or even hinted that the rest of humanity should follow, especially given that his personal wealth was still located in northern Canaan at the time he met up with Melchizedek (nobody in their right mind took along all their wealth on a mission of war), so Melchizedek received not one red cent of Abraham's personal wealth so far as we know.

Giving is the only principle established by Paul to the Church, based upon no preconceived threshold of a percentage or anything else false teachers demand from their pulpits. Paul never taught that the primary portion of one's giving was to be rightfully utilized for the support of dead buildings, programs, materials, carpeting, parking lots, chandeliers, stained glass windows, et al.

The primary portion demonstrated in scriptures all went for the meeting of needs first and foremost, but modern, western practices have the primary portion funneled into the facility and staffing before anything is used for the meeting of needs and missions (according to a Christianity Today article from the 1990's).

Now, I'm not saying that a group of professing believers don't have the right to possess communal property where they can meet together in the luxuries of comforts, but when they elevate that ownership to the level of requirement and an alleged measure by which they assume is God's prescribed model for what a real local church should look like, that's where I draw the line. The Church is people, whether they are a part of some grouping with a communal building with or without religious exercises.

The day is fast approaching in these last days that possession of communal property for religious exercise will come to a close for those that refuse to tout the worldly ways and values.

Besides, I never could master the art of fellowshipping with the backs of other people's heads...

MM

Good morning from California, Musicmaster;

You posted an excellent thread. I agree and like the way you outlined the points.

There is a difference between "Tithes," or "tenth" from the Old Testament in Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, vs Giving, or Offering in the New Testament in Mark 12, Luke, 2 Corinthians.

I understand what ministers are conveying to their congregations about offerings and will use the term tithes but I feel it needs to be taught correctly.

Thank you for sharing this topic and should receive some good discussion.

God bless you, MM, and your family.
 
Another interesting note about the tithe is that, the man who had only nine lambs born in that year was not required to hand anything over to the Levites because there was no tenth to pass under the rod.

Many modern and historic tithe teachers, however, demand that even those who are below the threshold for the tithe requirement in the law should "give "sacrificially to the Lord's work."

Hmm. Never have I heard any one of those types say anything about what Paul had to say on the matter:

1 Timothy 5:8 But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.

So many hands are beaten and broken from having used their fists to try and pulverize the word of God into conformity to their contrived theologies.

Case in point: There was a "senior elder" in a local church organization who was lauded and praised by those in the congregation over which he served. They expressed great love for him because he gave such a high percentage of his income to that "church," his family had to live without electricity, water and natural gas because it got to the point they couldn't pay their bills.

Romans 13:8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.

His family, in order to have drinking water had to get it from neighbors, and accepted offers from those neighbors to let them use their showers because the neighbors were not aware that his poverty was self-induced. He had no problem letting them think he and his family had simply fallen on hard times at no fault of his own. The neighbors didn't realize he was doing it to his own family to get the praise from the congregation, and the admiration of his "pastor," who was equally immature in his knowledge and understanding of scripture to let that nonsense go on under his nose.

Folks, I'm all for believers giving sacrificially and with a joyful heart to give, but that clown had the wrong motives, he deceived others, he owed others, and therefore made a mockery of the Bible and its wonderful balance taught for all our lives. I do not give money to what I know or suspect are professional panhandlers, drug addicts and such. I seek the Lord and His wisdom as to where I should give.

This past winter, when a young woman approached me in the Wal-Mart parking lot and tried to give me a sob story about her car having run out of gas across town with her crippled mother sitting in the car, waiting, I knew something wasn't right with that story. Besides the fact that she clearly was on crack as evidenced by her rotting teeth and overall skanky appearance, and likely not having a driver's license, I declined to give her money, but was about to offer to buy her some food, but her tears dried up and her sobs stopped as fast as they appeared. In her begging routine, she tried to offer me what looked like a $0.10 ring on her finger in exchange for "a little gas money."

Anyway, she walked back over to her pack of friends she was running with, all of them looking all across the parking lot, looking for the next sucker they could try to tear jerk some money from. Being an enabler for the sin of "pharmakia" (Greek for drugs) isn't conduct to which the Lord has called us.

MM
 
Tithing is an interesting paradigm that has been redefined and expounded upon into oblivion. The plethora of teachings about the tithe has become so butchered and ground up into an unrecognizable, bloody mess that it no longer has any distinguishable form.

The law of God that defined and governed the tithe stipulated these things (this is not an exhaustive dissertation):

* The tithe was only a tenth from the flocks, herds, orchards, vineyards and fields.
* The tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages, such as the wages earned by the men hired to harvest the crops, orchards and vineyards.
* The tithe was never a tenth of processed products such as every tenth chair or table made by a carpenter (hint, hint), or every tenth pair of shoes from the cobbler, or every tenth yard of woven material from clothiers and weavers, etc.
* The tithe was a part of the written law of God, and therefore inseparable from the rest of the written law.

The tithe does not predate the law to the time of Abraham because:

* Abraham gave a tenth of the spoils of war he is never said to have ever repeated, and never had it in his mind to keep what he knew was originally not his own property since we know that he intentionally brought it all back to the original owners who may very well have died without its return.
* The nation of Israel never, throughout her whole history, mimicked what Abraham did with the spoils of war.
* Abraham's tithe is not a principle the Lord demanded or even hinted that the rest of humanity should follow, especially given that his personal wealth was still located in northern Canaan at the time he met up with Melchizedek (nobody in their right mind took along all their wealth on a mission of war), so Melchizedek received not one red cent of Abraham's personal wealth so far as we know.

Giving is the only principle established by Paul to the Church, based upon no preconceived threshold of a percentage or anything else false teachers demand from their pulpits. Paul never taught that the primary portion of one's giving was to be rightfully utilized for the support of dead buildings, programs, materials, carpeting, parking lots, chandeliers, stained glass windows, et al.

The primary portion demonstrated in scriptures all went for the meeting of needs first and foremost, but modern, western practices have the primary portion funneled into the facility and staffing before anything is used for the meeting of needs and missions (according to a Christianity Today article from the 1990's).

Now, I'm not saying that a group of professing believers don't have the right to possess communal property where they can meet together in the luxuries of comforts, but when they elevate that ownership to the level of requirement and an alleged measure by which they assume is God's prescribed model for what a real local church should look like, that's where I draw the line. The Church is people, whether they are a part of some grouping with a communal building with or without religious exercises.

The day is fast approaching in these last days that possession of communal property for religious exercise will come to a close for those that refuse to tout the worldly ways and values.

Besides, I never could master the art of fellowshipping with the backs of other people's heads...

MM
Consider Genesis 4, in which Cain and Abel made their sacrifices. How did Cain and Abel know what to sacrifice? Did it just pop into their minds? Adam and Eve, who had walked with God in the Garden, told Cain and Abel what the appropriate sacrifices were. When the time came to sacrifice, Abel was obedient, while Cain was not. In Romans 4:15, Paul said that where there is no law there is no transgression. God spoke harshly to Cain, and pronounced a curse on him. If Cain did not know better, then God would have been unjust in His punishment.

The Christian is not called to Tithe but to "give as much as he can or can not do".

However....... Jesus commands tithing in Matt. 23:23. Our Lord and Savior was in favor of tithing. He should be, because He gave it at the beginning. He told Abraham about it. He assigned it to the Levitical priesthood. Then, by very strong implication in Hebrews 7, tithing is assigned to the church. There has never been any deviation. Tithing has always been God's manner of financing His educational service.

I for one have been a tither since I was born again 50 years ago. NOT because I was told it was demanded by God or because it was a Law......
but out of Love for God so that His instrument of salvation, preaching the gospel through the New Test. church would go on.
 
Consider Genesis 4, in which Cain and Abel made their sacrifices. How did Cain and Abel know what to sacrifice? Did it just pop into their minds? Adam and Eve, who had walked with God in the Garden, told Cain and Abel what the appropriate sacrifices were. When the time came to sacrifice, Abel was obedient, while Cain was not. In Romans 4:15, Paul said that where there is no law there is no transgression. God spoke harshly to Cain, and pronounced a curse on him. If Cain did not know better, then God would have been unjust in His punishment.

The Christian is not called to Tithe but to "give as much as he can or can not do".

However....... Jesus commands tithing in Matt. 23:23. Our Lord and Savior was in favor of tithing. He should be, because He gave it at the beginning. He told Abraham about it. He assigned it to the Levitical priesthood. Then, by very strong implication in Hebrews 7, tithing is assigned to the church. There has never been any deviation. Tithing has always been God's manner of financing His educational service.

I for one have been a tither since I was born again 50 years ago. NOT because I was told it was demanded by God or because it was a Law......
but out of Love for God so that His instrument of salvation, preaching the gospel through the New Test. church would go on.

Now that is the kind of information I'm looking for in the scriptures. I have some questions, if you don't mind:

What did Abel's sacrifice have to do with any command for tithing>

Where did the Lord tell Abraham to tithe, considering that he gave a tenth of the spoils to Melchizedek, some to his men who fought with him, and the rest back to the rightful owners?

You see, I've been trying to find the correlations to the scriptures what people claim are there, and much of it I can't find.

Now, if your presentation is going to be more of a "logical" analysis rather than what's actually written, and what's not written, then I would have to say that logic makes no doctrines that one can say is binding on the level of theology. Just wanted to make sure that was clear.

What is not written is the idea that Abraham tithed from his own personal wealth still located up in northern Canaan. The text says nothing about his having gone back up north to his dwelling, collecting a tenth of his personal wealth, and then returning back south with that tenth and all the spoils and captives. So, silence can be a good indicator of facts that shatter the opposing assumptions I've often heard from so many people over the years.

Additionally (and please don't take this wrong because I'm not assuming anything about what you personally do with your giving), what most people do with their "tithe" is used mostly for something from which they personally benefit. So my question is: Is that really giving to the Lord, or paying their dues for membership.

Case in point: Christianity Today (back in the early 90's) put out a special report on a nationwide survey of churches of various denominations and independents, and the results of the survey were amazingly revealing. Of the 30,000+ church organizations that responded, 93% reported that they absorbed around 95% of all that they took in from their congregation's giving that most called "tithes and offerings." That absorption included mortgage payments on the structures and property, program materials, staffing salaries, utilities and upkeep, and a very small percentage for missions and such.

Given that more than 82% of all that was for facility costs, how is that giving to the Lord for a luxury form which all the "givers" and "non-givers" benefit each week? When I give to the poor on the street or in charities, I get nothing back in return on this earth from them or anyone else of which I'm aware. That is true giving that can store up treasure of Heaven. People these days, and historically, have this strange idea that facilities and staffing are a necessity rather than a luxury. Talk about placing the cart before the horse...

I hope you don't mind discussing these topical items. They come to mind from time to time, and just happened to spring back to life from your post above.

Thanks for your typing time.

MM
 
Now that is the kind of information I'm looking for in the scriptures. I have some questions, if you don't mind:

What did Abel's sacrifice have to do with any command for tithing>

Where did the Lord tell Abraham to tithe, considering that he gave a tenth of the spoils to Melchizedek, some to his men who fought with him, and the rest back to the rightful owners?

You see, I've been trying to find the correlations to the scriptures what people claim are there, and much of it I can't find.

Now, if your presentation is going to be more of a "logical" analysis rather than what's actually written, and what's not written, then I would have to say that logic makes no doctrines that one can say is binding on the level of theology. Just wanted to make sure that was clear.

What is not written is the idea that Abraham tithed from his own personal wealth still located up in northern Canaan. The text says nothing about his having gone back up north to his dwelling, collecting a tenth of his personal wealth, and then returning back south with that tenth and all the spoils and captives. So, silence can be a good indicator of facts that shatter the opposing assumptions I've often heard from so many people over the years.

Additionally (and please don't take this wrong because I'm not assuming anything about what you personally do with your giving), what most people do with their "tithe" is used mostly for something from which they personally benefit. So my question is: Is that really giving to the Lord, or paying their dues for membership.

Case in point: Christianity Today (back in the early 90's) put out a special report on a nationwide survey of churches of various denominations and independents, and the results of the survey were amazingly revealing. Of the 30,000+ church organizations that responded, 93% reported that they absorbed around 95% of all that they took in from their congregation's giving that most called "tithes and offerings." That absorption included mortgage payments on the structures and property, program materials, staffing salaries, utilities and upkeep, and a very small percentage for missions and such.

Given that more than 82% of all that was for facility costs, how is that giving to the Lord for a luxury form which all the "givers" and "non-givers" benefit each week? When I give to the poor on the street or in charities, I get nothing back in return on this earth from them or anyone else of which I'm aware. That is true giving that can store up treasure of Heaven. People these days, and historically, have this strange idea that facilities and staffing are a necessity rather than a luxury. Talk about placing the cart before the horse...

I hope you don't mind discussing these topical items. They come to mind from time to time, and just happened to spring back to life from your post above.

Thanks for your typing time.

MM

I do not mind at all and in fact I am honored that you would ask me but Now please note.......I will attempt to respond but remember that what I tell you is simply my opinions. I am NOT the last word and please feel free to seek answers elsewhere as well.

You asked.......
"
What did Abel's sacrifice have to do with any command for tithing".

Because they came at a specific time, at a specific place, WITH AN OFFERING! Someone had to have told them where to be and what to bring.
Maybe it was Mom and Dad.

But then apparently God talked to Cain and Abel directly, NO I can not prove that and no one has to accept that.
But evidently God did it often enough that Cain was accustomed to it and didn't show signs of shock or fall down on his face as others are recorded to have done later in history. So that tells me something right there.

Then on the second hand, if you cross reference to Gen. 4:7 as God's words don't make sense unless Cain already had an understanding of right and wrong. It therefore makes sense that God had previously given instructions concerning offerings. But again......that is just something I was taught many, many years ago and you are free to laugh it off.


Then you asked...........
"Where did the Lord tell Abraham to tithe."

Now.....IF there is any validity to what I said above, then the act of tithing was established well before the Law and was an accepted practice followed by Abraham because it was the accepted thing to do. It seems clear enough in the Genesis account that, for Abraham, paying the tithe to Melchizedek was an act of worship. It was an individual act of worship without coercion. He simply had to decide whether he was going to obey God or not. It is none of my business if another man prays. Why should it be my affair if he tithes?

Now remember......I am just a simple teacher of the Bible. What I say is not gospel and you are free to forget it as soon as you read it. I never knew that I had to make that clear so I want you to understand that fact my brother!!!!

Having made that abundantly clear, It is true, of course, that there is no law of tithing in the book of Genesis. But then, there is no law of the Sabbath there either. Genesis is not a book of laws, and we find only inferences about law. Nevertheless, there is one statement in Genesis that has far reaching implications relative to what Abraham knew of the law. On one of the occasions when God blessed Abraham, He said it was:

Genesis 26:5............
"Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws".

Now the Bible should SPEAK to us and I ask you......does THAT specific Scripture SPEAK to YOU and your need in knowing????????


It tells ME that there were not only laws known to Abraham, but a structure of laws. Men knew it was wrong to lie, steal, and commit adultery. We know this because of inferences scattered all through Genesis. And so, when we find two men who tithed, we naturally conclude that here is a strong inference that a law of tithing was also known long before Moses came on the scene.

Then you asked.........
"So my question is: Is that really giving to the Lord, or paying their dues for membership."


First and foremost, God wants us to give because it shows that we recognize he is truly the Lord of our lives. I have allways considered giving as me contribulting to the work of God and IF...IF the church does not do the work which is to spe=read the gospel.......WHO WILL???????
Fox news.....NBC, Newsweek, The New York Times.????????

No brother.....it is the church or it is nobody! THAT is the reason for the establishment of the church itself.

James 1:17.....
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning."

Giving is an expression of our thankfulness and praise to God. It comes from a heart of worship that recognizes everything we have and give already belongs to the Lord.

God instructed Old Testament believers to give a tithe (10 %) because this ten percent represented the first, most important portion of all they had. The New Test. does not suggest a certain percentage for giving, but simply says for each to give "in keeping with his income."

I hope this is of some help to you and again, thank for asking!
 
I do not mind at all and in fact I am honored that you would ask me but Now please note.......I will attempt to respond but remember that what I tell you is simply my opinions. I am NOT the last word and please feel free to seek answers elsewhere as well.

You asked.......
"
What did Abel's sacrifice have to do with any command for tithing".

Because they came at a specific time, at a specific place, WITH AN OFFERING! Someone had to have told them where to be and what to bring.
Maybe it was Mom and Dad.

But then apparently God talked to Cain and Abel directly, NO I can not prove that and no one has to accept that.
But evidently God did it often enough that Cain was accustomed to it and didn't show signs of shock or fall down on his face as others are recorded to have done later in history. So that tells me something right there.

Then on the second hand, if you cross reference to Gen. 4:7 as God's words don't make sense unless Cain already had an understanding of right and wrong. It therefore makes sense that God had previously given instructions concerning offerings. But again......that is just something I was taught many, many years ago and you are free to laugh it off.


Then you asked...........
"Where did the Lord tell Abraham to tithe."

Now.....IF there is any validity to what I said above, then the act of tithing was established well before the Law and was an accepted practice followed by Abraham because it was the accepted thing to do. It seems clear enough in the Genesis account that, for Abraham, paying the tithe to Melchizedek was an act of worship. It was an individual act of worship without coercion. He simply had to decide whether he was going to obey God or not. It is none of my business if another man prays. Why should it be my affair if he tithes?

Now remember......I am just a simple teacher of the Bible. What I say is not gospel and you are free to forget it as soon as you read it. I never knew that I had to make that clear so I want you to understand that fact my brother!!!!

Having made that abundantly clear, It is true, of course, that there is no law of tithing in the book of Genesis. But then, there is no law of the Sabbath there either. Genesis is not a book of laws, and we find only inferences about law. Nevertheless, there is one statement in Genesis that has far reaching implications relative to what Abraham knew of the law. On one of the occasions when God blessed Abraham, He said it was:

Genesis 26:5............
"Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws".

Now the Bible should SPEAK to us and I ask you......does THAT specific Scripture SPEAK to YOU and your need in knowing????????


It tells ME that there were not only laws known to Abraham, but a structure of laws. Men knew it was wrong to lie, steal, and commit adultery. We know this because of inferences scattered all through Genesis. And so, when we find two men who tithed, we naturally conclude that here is a strong inference that a law of tithing was also known long before Moses came on the scene.

Then you asked.........
"So my question is: Is that really giving to the Lord, or paying their dues for membership."


First and foremost, God wants us to give because it shows that we recognize he is truly the Lord of our lives. I have allways considered giving as me contribulting to the work of God and IF...IF the church does not do the work which is to spe=read the gospel.......WHO WILL???????
Fox news.....NBC, Newsweek, The New York Times.????????

No brother.....it is the church or it is nobody! THAT is the reason for the establishment of the church itself.

James 1:17.....
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning."

Giving is an expression of our thankfulness and praise to God. It comes from a heart of worship that recognizes everything we have and give already belongs to the Lord.

God instructed Old Testament believers to give a tithe (10 %) because this ten percent represented the first, most important portion of all they had. The New Test. does not suggest a certain percentage for giving, but simply says for each to give "in keeping with his income."

I hope this is of some help to you and again, thank for asking!

Thanks for not getting frustrated with my questions. Many have gotten defensive in the past on other boards, and for reasons that I could only guess at.

Ok, so if we go back to my original post for this thread, I stated some observations that you did not address, and so I'm curious about your thoughts concerning them.

I said:

* The tithe was only a tenth from the flocks, herds, orchards, vineyards and fields.
* The tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages, such as the wages earned by the men hired to harvest the crops, orchards and vineyards.
* The tithe was never a tenth of processed products such as every tenth chair or table made by a carpenter (hint, hint), or every tenth pair of shoes from the cobbler, or every tenth yard of woven material from clothiers and weavers, etc.
* The tithe was a part of the written law of God, and therefore inseparable from the rest of the written law.

So when you say the OT Israelites were commanded to tithe, it seems important that we consider exactly who was required to tithe, and of what the tithe consisted. My second point seems important, because modern teachings completely redefine the tithe of the OT. What are your thoughts about these basic facts one can glean from the law of God?

As to the law and statutes Abraham was praised for having kept, I've often wondered, sometimes out loud, what those laws encompassed. Interestingly, even in the midst of the existence of law before Moses, it was faith that the Lord highlighted as to what made Abraham righteous in the eyes of the Lord.

In your opinion, do you believe Abraham made routine pilgrimages to hand over a tenth of his increase at whatever interval he may have embraced? Strangely, many people assume he did when they claim Abraham gave to Melchizedek a tenth of all his property, even though the narrative of that mission of war say nothing of the kind.

Now, here's something to consider: A number of people have told me through the years that it was customary for the victor in those days to own the spoils they retrieved in war. My problem with that is, and perhaps you will agree with me, I don't believe Abraham was as other men of that time.

Why?

Simply stated, his actions were such that he intentionally returned with all the spoils, and handed them back to their rightful owners. That tells me he was a cut above most other men of his day, and yet many today relegate him to the lower regions of human depravity. He was a man they have never met, and have never themselves approached his heights of manhood, and yet assume he was as all the other men of that era. He wasn't perfect, but he also seemed to care about the people of those cities to have brought back to them what was taken from them, minus the portion Melchizedek carted off and his own men.

As a side not, a researcher believes he has found the temple of Melchizedek. There is a Youtube video of it. It's beneath the City of David, just along the outskirts. That was interesting, to say the least.

One other item, what are your thoughts about the priorities in our giving that I mentioned in post #6 of this thread?

Thanks for your typing time for this topic.

MM
 
Thanks for not getting frustrated with my questions. Many have gotten defensive in the past on other boards, and for reasons that I could only guess at.

Ok, so if we go back to my original post for this thread, I stated some observations that you did not address, and so I'm curious about your thoughts concerning them.

I said:

* The tithe was only a tenth from the flocks, herds, orchards, vineyards and fields.
* The tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages, such as the wages earned by the men hired to harvest the crops, orchards and vineyards.
* The tithe was never a tenth of processed products such as every tenth chair or table made by a carpenter (hint, hint), or every tenth pair of shoes from the cobbler, or every tenth yard of woven material from clothiers and weavers, etc.
* The tithe was a part of the written law of God, and therefore inseparable from the rest of the written law.

So when you say the OT Israelites were commanded to tithe, it seems important that we consider exactly who was required to tithe, and of what the tithe consisted. My second point seems important, because modern teachings completely redefine the tithe of the OT. What are your thoughts about these basic facts one can glean from the law of God?

As to the law and statutes Abraham was praised for having kept, I've often wondered, sometimes out loud, what those laws encompassed. Interestingly, even in the midst of the existence of law before Moses, it was faith that the Lord highlighted as to what made Abraham righteous in the eyes of the Lord.

In your opinion, do you believe Abraham made routine pilgrimages to hand over a tenth of his increase at whatever interval he may have embraced? Strangely, many people assume he did when they claim Abraham gave to Melchizedek a tenth of all his property, even though the narrative of that mission of war say nothing of the kind.

Now, here's something to consider: A number of people have told me through the years that it was customary for the victor in those days to own the spoils they retrieved in war. My problem with that is, and perhaps you will agree with me, I don't believe Abraham was as other men of that time.

Why?

Simply stated, his actions were such that he intentionally returned with all the spoils, and handed them back to their rightful owners. That tells me he was a cut above most other men of his day, and yet many today relegate him to the lower regions of human depravity. He was a man they have never met, and have never themselves approached his heights of manhood, and yet assume he was as all the other men of that era. He wasn't perfect, but he also seemed to care about the people of those cities to have brought back to them what was taken from them, minus the portion Melchizedek carted off and his own men.

As a side not, a researcher believes he has found the temple of Melchizedek. There is a Youtube video of it. It's beneath the City of David, just along the outskirts. That was interesting, to say the least.

One other item, what are your thoughts about the priorities in our giving that I mentioned in post #6 of this thread?

Thanks for your typing time for this topic.

MM
1. Yes
Leviticus 27:32.........
"And every tithe of herds and flocks, every tenth animal of all that pass under the herdsman’s staff, shall be holy to the LORD.'

The economy of those was was agriculture.

2. Correct.
Same as #1. That tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages. It was exacted ONLY against crops and livestock. No carpenter had to hand over every tenth chair, table, bench, or anything else they made (knock on wood, hint, hint) to the Levites or priests.

3. Correct.
It would have been the 1st of 10th chair, or the 1st of 10th lamb.
Remember.....Jericho was the 1st cith of 10 conquered out of the 10 fought over when entering Caanan.

4. Correct.
Deuteronomy 14:22. The command to tithe was part of the Mosiac Law, a law code that God gave to ancient Israel. Christians are not legally subject to the Mosaic Law and so are not required to tithe. But IMHO it was already in effect as Abrahsm knew he was supposed to tithe.

Did Abraham tithe regually? Don't know. tithing is something that you do regularly. Not just once. Did Abraham do something like this ? His life is well documented in the Bible with 14 chapters of Genesis devoted almost completely to him. Yet this is the only time in his life in which we see him giving a tenth. In other words, what is described in Hebrews and Genesis was a one time event and not something that was repeated regularly, week after week or month after month.
 
1. Yes
Leviticus 27:32.........
"And every tithe of herds and flocks, every tenth animal of all that pass under the herdsman’s staff, shall be holy to the LORD.'

The economy of those was was agriculture.

2. Correct.
Same as #1. That tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages. It was exacted ONLY against crops and livestock. No carpenter had to hand over every tenth chair, table, bench, or anything else they made (knock on wood, hint, hint) to the Levites or priests.

3. Correct.
It would have been the 1st of 10th chair, or the 1st of 10th lamb.
Remember.....Jericho was the 1st cith of 10 conquered out of the 10 fought over when entering Caanan.

4. Correct.
Deuteronomy 14:22. The command to tithe was part of the Mosiac Law, a law code that God gave to ancient Israel. Christians are not legally subject to the Mosaic Law and so are not required to tithe. But IMHO it was already in effect as Abrahsm knew he was supposed to tithe.

Did Abraham tithe regually? Don't know. tithing is something that you do regularly. Not just once. Did Abraham do something like this ? His life is well documented in the Bible with 14 chapters of Genesis devoted almost completely to him. Yet this is the only time in his life in which we see him giving a tenth. In other words, what is described in Hebrews and Genesis was a one time event and not something that was repeated regularly, week after week or month after month.

There's a couple of items I'd like to ask about:

You stated that agriculture was the economy. I'm not sure to what extent your meaning goes, but they also had currency, of which I'm sure we can agree since Abraham used currency to purchase the burial cave for Sarah. The only time currency was involved in the tithe was when the appointed place was too far away. The Jew could then sell their tithe, bind up the money in his hand, go to the appointed place, buy whatever his heart "lusteth" after, and partake of it before the Lord in that appointed place, not forsaking the Levite. Are we in agreement on that?

Additionally, monetary wages never had anything to do with the tithe from the pockets or pouches of laborers or anyone else who produced increase by their own hands. Today, however, many demand a tithe from earned wages contrary to what is written in not only the account of Abraham and his meeting with Melchizedek, but also the law governing the tithe in Israel. The singular account of Abraham's handing over a tenth of property he obviously didn't consider to be his own, and that he had not gone back up into northern Canaan to collect one red cent of his own wealth to hand over to Melchizedek, what is actually written and what is not written paints that very portrait for our understanding. Do you agree?

Now, to let everyone know, I'm not saying that any of this diminishes Abraham's thankfulness to God and his worship of God in that tithe, but my experience is such that far too many teachers of those accounts leave out the observable facts, which is the sin of omission, because they have to know that by omitting key facts in the narrative only reinforces the false perceptions about the contrived "principle" behind modern tithing from earned wages in the minds of the ignorant masses who are too lazy to open their Bibles and actually read them.

Please also keep in mind that my only intent here is to sharpen everyone's understanding of what's actually written that I fully expect them to go and read for themselves rather than to take my word for it. I also am not trying to convince people to not give according what they purpose in their own hearts. I do, however, encourage responsible giving, which is to hand over the primary and largest portion of our giving to what we do not directly benefit, such as meeting genuine needs within the body of Christ first, and then the surrounding community, with support of the luxuries of "church" buildings and such taking a lower level of priority from expendable income.

I've been informed by some over the years that giving in accordance with biblical priorities would bankrupt institutional church organizations since giving only what's left over would not be enough to support them. When I see people pitting the absolutes of God's word against their enjoyment of the many luxuries they afford themselves through their church organization of choice, I'm reminded as to why the Lord pointed out the massive width of that path that leads to destruction, and the many who are upon it, and how narrow that path to life and its gate, and how few there are who find it.

There is a church organization here in this city that has two lock boxes at the entrance to the building. One is for giving to the poor and needy, and the other is for support of the ministers and the facility. They have the largest and most wonderful outreach for food and other provisions for the needy, and yet still have plenty for the staff and the facility. When there were short-falls for the facility and the ministers, they would simply announce the short-fall, and the people simply give more from their expendable income to close the gap.

Most leadership in most church organizations are too cowardly to step out into the wilderness of faith to rely on God's provision, although they preach that to their people, "YOU need to step out in faith, and trust in the Lord for all provision...," while they cower behind their sins of omissions from the word of God they know their followers will never go in and read for themselves. Their own lack of faith is an astounding spectacle to behold.

What are your thoughts?

MM
 
There's a couple of items I'd like to ask about:

You stated that agriculture was the economy. I'm not sure to what extent your meaning goes, but they also had currency, of which I'm sure we can agree since Abraham used currency to purchase the burial cave for Sarah. The only time currency was involved in the tithe was when the appointed place was too far away. The Jew could then sell their tithe, bind up the money in his hand, go to the appointed place, buy whatever his heart "lusteth" after, and partake of it before the Lord in that appointed place, not forsaking the Levite. Are we in agreement on that?

Additionally, monetary wages never had anything to do with the tithe from the pockets or pouches of laborers or anyone else who produced increase by their own hands. Today, however, many demand a tithe from earned wages contrary to what is written in not only the account of Abraham and his meeting with Melchizedek, but also the law governing the tithe in Israel. The singular account of Abraham's handing over a tenth of property he obviously didn't consider to be his own, and that he had not gone back up into northern Canaan to collect one red cent of his own wealth to hand over to Melchizedek, what is actually written and what is not written paints that very portrait for our understanding. Do you agree?

Now, to let everyone know, I'm not saying that any of this diminishes Abraham's thankfulness to God and his worship of God in that tithe, but my experience is such that far too many teachers of those accounts leave out the observable facts, which is the sin of omission, because they have to know that by omitting key facts in the narrative only reinforces the false perceptions about the contrived "principle" behind modern tithing from earned wages in the minds of the ignorant masses who are too lazy to open their Bibles and actually read them.

Please also keep in mind that my only intent here is to sharpen everyone's understanding of what's actually written that I fully expect them to go and read for themselves rather than to take my word for it. I also am not trying to convince people to not give according what they purpose in their own hearts. I do, however, encourage responsible giving, which is to hand over the primary and largest portion of our giving to what we do not directly benefit, such as meeting genuine needs within the body of Christ first, and then the surrounding community, with support of the luxuries of "church" buildings and such taking a lower level of priority from expendable income.

I've been informed by some over the years that giving in accordance with biblical priorities would bankrupt institutional church organizations since giving only what's left over would not be enough to support them. When I see people pitting the absolutes of God's word against their enjoyment of the many luxuries they afford themselves through their church organization of choice, I'm reminded as to why the Lord pointed out the massive width of that path that leads to destruction, and the many who are upon it, and how narrow that path to life and its gate, and how few there are who find it.

There is a church organization here in this city that has two lock boxes at the entrance to the building. One is for giving to the poor and needy, and the other is for support of the ministers and the facility. They have the largest and most wonderful outreach for food and other provisions for the needy, and yet still have plenty for the staff and the facility. When there were short-falls for the facility and the ministers, they would simply announce the short-fall, and the people simply give more from their expendable income to close the gap.

Most leadership in most church organizations are too cowardly to step out into the wilderness of faith to rely on God's provision, although they preach that to their people, "YOU need to step out in faith, and trust in the Lord for all provision...," while they cower behind their sins of omissions from the word of God they know their followers will never go in and read for themselves. Their own lack of faith is an astounding spectacle to behold.

What are your thoughts?

MM

My thoughts are that, We live with coins and paper money today, but before about 600 BC, coins did not exist. Instead, a weight standard existed similar to the Gold Standard the world used up to the 20th century.

Gold and silver was of course used as a measure of wealth but not as though you would go to the market and drop down 1 piece of gold for a corn cob.

A talent = a shekel and was a specified weight of a precious metal which was understood to have a specific "monetary value".
Before coins, Third/fourth of a shekel is not a coin but a fraction of a known and accepted weight of a shekel: 1 Sam 9:8; Ne 10:32. Remember that coins were not used in Israel until after 400 BC.

When I read through the Old Test. we see over and over the problem with Starvation. Plagues. Days of plenty and days of Famine.
If the rains fell on time the crops were good and everyone was happy.. When they didn't then there was FAMINE in the land.

The ancient societies were basically rooted in crop production.

My church today....we do not pass an offering plate. We have have two drop boxes at the exit doors for those who want to give to the church.
 
The very word "tithing" means 1/10 (10%). We do not live by the law but
the Law lives in us. Do we give God less because He doesn't
blatantly demand it from us now? Or do we do it based on
convictions that all things belong to God and if I am a good
husbandman in the vineyard of the Master then I invest what He
has provided not as a demand but proof of wisdom with what He
provides?
 
1. Yes
Leviticus 27:32.........
"And every tithe of herds and flocks, every tenth animal of all that pass under the herdsman’s staff, shall be holy to the LORD.'

The economy of those was was agriculture.

2. Correct.
Same as #1. That tithe never had anything to do with monetary wages. It was exacted ONLY against crops and livestock. No carpenter had to hand over every tenth chair, table, bench, or anything else they made (knock on wood, hint, hint) to the Levites or priests.

3. Correct.
It would have been the 1st of 10th chair, or the 1st of 10th lamb.
Remember.....Jericho was the 1st cith of 10 conquered out of the 10 fought over when entering Caanan.

4. Correct.
Deuteronomy 14:22. The command to tithe was part of the Mosiac Law, a law code that God gave to ancient Israel. Christians are not legally subject to the Mosaic Law and so are not required to tithe. But IMHO it was already in effect as Abrahsm knew he was supposed to tithe.

Did Abraham tithe regually? Don't know. tithing is something that you do regularly. Not just once. Did Abraham do something like this ? His life is well documented in the Bible with 14 chapters of Genesis devoted almost completely to him. Yet this is the only time in his life in which we see him giving a tenth. In other words, what is described in Hebrews and Genesis was a one time event and not something that was repeated regularly, week after week or month after month.

I was in a hurry to get to church when I posted this and I should had included a couple of things that in my opinion can be learned.

1. We as Christians are not LIMITED to a 10% tithe.

2nd Corinthians 9:7, which reads:
“Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

I had the honor of working for Mr. J,C. Penny. I have one of his books right here on a book self and in that book he tells how he gave 90% and lived off 10% and became a multimillionaire.

2. We are NOY required to give to a local church. I think we should but there is no requirement to do so.

There are all kinds of ministries that we can give to. There are orphanages, birth centers and on and on and on.
 
My thoughts are that, We live with coins and paper money today, but before about 600 BC, coins did not exist. Instead, a weight standard existed similar to the Gold Standard the world used up to the 20th century.

Gold and silver was of course used as a measure of wealth but not as though you would go to the market and drop down 1 piece of gold for a corn cob.

A talent = a shekel and was a specified weight of a precious metal which was understood to have a specific "monetary value".
Before coins, Third/fourth of a shekel is not a coin but a fraction of a known and accepted weight of a shekel: 1 Sam 9:8; Ne 10:32. Remember that coins were not used in Israel until after 400 BC.

When I read through the Old Test. we see over and over the problem with Starvation. Plagues. Days of plenty and days of Famine.
If the rains fell on time the crops were good and everyone was happy.. When they didn't then there was FAMINE in the land.

The ancient societies were basically rooted in crop production.

My church today....we do not pass an offering plate. We have have two drop boxes at the exit doors for those who want to give to the church.

Genesis 23, as you said, deals with measures of silver and gold, and Abraham bought the field with the cave to bury Sarah with four hundred "pieces" of silver. They apparently didn't have coins stamped out in exact measures, such as a calibrated, measured ounce in those times, but the metals were still a currency that was not produce from agriculture, as I've seen others claim at the exclusion of the metallic currencies in measured amounts that they used, just as we do today with Troy ounces of gold or silver coins in whatever purity they are said to have.

I haven't really studied in-depth as to when the coins were cast in more accurate coinage so that measures were no longer the norm, but that's only an exercise in verbal gymnastics from what I see in the text. You see, many people I've encountered look back at Abraham and the other ancients as if they were ignorant bumpkins rather than to realize those people were much more intelligent than modern laymen attribute to them. Genetic deterioration through the centuries has taken its toll on humanity. Where it's true we have different technologies than they did back then, they still accomplished feats that our smartest scholars can't figure out, such as how they moved the two foundation stones for the Acropolis from the quarry 100 miles away from where they were hewn, and set them where they are today. Our largest equipment couldn't move those stones, but they did back then. I would give the money in my cloths to watch how they did that. :cool:

MM
 
Genesis 23, as you said, deals with measures of silver and gold, and Abraham bought the field with the cave to bury Sarah with four hundred "pieces" of silver. They apparently didn't have coins stamped out in exact measures, such as a calibrated, measured ounce in those times, but the metals were still a currency that was not produce from agriculture, as I've seen others claim at the exclusion of the metallic currencies in measured amounts that they used, just as we do today with Troy ounces of gold or silver coins in whatever purity they are said to have.

I haven't really studied in-depth as to when the coins were cast in more accurate coinage so that measures were no longer the norm, but that's only an exercise in verbal gymnastics from what I see in the text. You see, many people I've encountered look back at Abraham and the other ancients as if they were ignorant bumpkins rather than to realize those people were much more intelligent than modern laymen attribute to them. Genetic deterioration through the centuries has taken its toll on humanity. Where it's true we have different technologies than they did back then, they still accomplished feats that our smartest scholars can't figure out, such as how they moved the two foundation stones for the Acropolis from the quarry 100 miles away from where they were hewn, and set them where they are today. Our largest equipment couldn't move those stones, but they did back then. I would give the money in my cloths to watch how they did that. :cool:

MM

I agree brother.

Today we rely on computers, calculators, phones, slide rules on so on. 5000 or 6000 years ago it was strictly ones brain!

Think about the fact that Noah had NO experience in Boat building or sailing, but he built the Ark with NO nails and kept it afloat for 1 year.
 
MusicMaster, you seem to have a lot of wisdom gained by experience.

NS, I don't know that I can take credit for wisdom. I thank the Lord for what He has given to me, and the things He has shown to me that are far beyond my experiences.

What I can say is that, well, I once was sitting in the middle of a large crowd, and I remember looking up through the ceiling and asking the Lord, "Is this all we are? Are we nothing more than this as a body, sitting here and passively listening? Are we nothing more?"

Oh, my. I had no clue as to just how profoundly I was going to discover firsthand the Lord's answer to that. I wish I could hand to you and others on a silver platter the depths and breadths of the Lord's answers.

What I can say is that, well, He had me cast aside my religious crutches, pushed me out into the wilderness, and said for me to walk that wilderness for a while, and see what I'm made of without the support of institutionalism and togetherness with fellow believers.

In that walk, stumbling and falling down, being stung by the scorpions of worldly enticements, the sidewinder, pit vipers of temptations beyond measure to just give up and cry "foul," it was in the latter moments of that journey that the Lord opened up the portal of light that led me out of that, and started me on a journey of discovery.

One take-away from this severely limited insight into that journey, I'll just say that the Lord showed to me just how petty and pathetic my beliefs were. I was a bandwagoneer. I was comfortable riding along and believing what everyone else did. When that wagon hit a huge rock and dumped me onto the road, I refused the hands reaching out to me to pull me back. It took that wilderness walk to gain that much strength for the refusal.

Now, get this...when you refuse the helping hands seeking to draw you back into any one of the millions of bandwagons rumbling along that broad path of conformity, you find yourself on the receiving end of rejection and hatred that you otherwise would have thought unimaginable. "No Christians would reject you for not being a part of their think-tank!" Oh, yes they will, and they do.

Never say "never." The enormity of the things taught in the word of God that violate the status quo of Western, religious thought, is an amazing phenomenon to behold dare you reveal those things to your average churchianity attendee. They accuse you of being a "lone star Christian" who refuses to make himself accountable to a "church leader."

Oh, I better stop there, because I've learned my lessons about grabbing the proverbial tiger by the tail. The teeth on the other end are sharp, but my hide is too calloused to feel the pain any more, like Paul's. Far too few Christians are prepared nor desire to learn what they're really made of in their spiritual makeup. It was painful to see just how weak I was. My stature was.....non-existent.

The growth never ends. Climbing that highest mountain is an effort that is unceasing. The journey is worth it. The cuts and gashes from the rocks are what drive me. I love pulling others up, and even pushing them up higher than myself so that they can better continue their journey.

This earth needs more spiritual giants walking its surface, and only the Lord can grow those. No Cemetery Bible School or Theosophical University will do it. Knowledge verified by a diploma hanging on a wall won't do it. Ordination from any one of the major denominations will do it. ThD's don't provide it. Attaining toward the fullness of the stature of Christ Jesus is the most noble of life-struggles, and helping others to get there.....that is worthy of our very lives.

MM
 
What I can say is that, well, He had me cast aside my religious crutches, pushed me out into the wilderness, and said for me to walk that wilderness for a while, and see what I'm made of without the support of institutionalism and togetherness with fellow believers.
Now, get this...when you refuse the helping hands seeking to draw you back into any one of the millions of bandwagons rumbling along that broad path of conformity, you find yourself on the receiving end of rejection and hatred that you otherwise would have thought unimaginable. "No Christians would reject you for not being a part of their think-tank!" Oh, yes they will, and they do.
I agree completely with all that you have said. I have been
through that wilderness and I am sorry I didn't wave at you
out there. But from what I have learned is that God is so much
more diverse than we are. We see one picture at a time, typically,
but He can use anyone, anywhere, anytime, even if they aren't His.
He gives each of the believers exactly what we need when we need
it. For some it may be an institution, others may be "lone stars", etc.
I have been on both sides as you likely have. We were doing the
Lord's work at the institution, in the wilderness, and now as solo-
teachers. We never stop being useful to Him and we must see Him
not as a giant torture king but a Person who just likes being with us.
 
Not sure I can add much to the discussion, but I remember reading in one church that couldn't afford to maintain their church building decided they would tell their parishioners to tithe so they could have enough money to pay for the new roof (or whatever it was)

They were reluctant to do so, but then the preachers added scripture supporting their reasons, they started doing so and I guess that tradition kept on going so even when the roof was paid they just kept doing so I guess to pay for bills, new carpet, alarm system, phone, photocopier, vaccum cleaner, toilet paper etc etc.
 
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