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Is Tithing for Today?

“And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham: but he whose descent is not counted from them received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him that had the promises.   And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better.  And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth.”

                                                                                                                 —Hebrews 7:5-8

 

Pastor Paul Strang



















Why not tithe?  Many would claim that tithing is under the Law so tithing isn’t for today. 

“We’ve  been redeemed from the Law, and tithing is under the Law.”

 

That certainly requires an answer.  We could start by remembering the words

of Jesus to His detractors that tithing is good. In Mathews 23:23 Jesus commended

 them for paying tithes on their spices as they should have done.  Even though tithing

then was good, it was before the cross.  Galatians 3 is a good place to go next.

 The verse that was misquoted above is actually: “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, ‘Cursed is every one who hangs on a tree’ so that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith” (Galatians 3:13-14.)  Note that Jesus only redeemed us from the curse of the Law, not the whole Law.  He didn’t redeem us from the blessings of the Law.  Go back to Deuteronomy 28.  We have been redeemed from the curses in verses 16-68, but not from the blessings of verses 3-14.

Is tithing a blessing or a curse?  Does tithing bring lack, sickness, problems, and destruction?  Or does God open the windows of heaven, pour out a blessing that cannot be contained, and rebuke the devourer for you?  It sounds like tithing is a blessing.  If Jesus redeemed us from the blessings, we should all petition God and have Him undo the Cross.  No!  We have a better covenant based on better promises!  Every part of my life is better because Jesus went to the Cross and took my curse upon Himself.

Tithing is first mentioned in Genesis 14 when Abraham gave “tithes of all” to Melchizedec, priest of the Most High God.  That puts tithing several hundred years before Moses and the Law.  Tithing, then, was before the Law.  The Law required two or three tithes (20-30%) each year, but the concept of tithing was outside the Law.

The Epistle to the Hebrews was written after the Cross.  It was written to believers in Christ.  Hebrew 7:8 tells us plainly that tithes are being received by someone who the Bible says still lives.

Under the Law, the tithes were taken by human (fallible) priests.  Now, tithes are received by the infallible Jesus.

When we tithe, the money goes into the church to benefit us and to provide for others, but it is received by Jesus Himself.  No wonder the Old Testament instructs us how to worship God with the tithe.  Tithing is an integral part of worship; it isn’t a break in the service so we can scrape enough money together to keep the church going.

God uses the system of tithing to get our minds off ourselves as lord and onto Him, to provide ministry for us, to spread the Gospel, and to focus on what God has done for us.

Tithing is for today.  Tithing is for us.  Tithing is for our blessing. 

Paul


























                          




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