Deep Thought: How much to “give”?

Sal: I didn’t start “tithing” or giving an offering to my local church until my college days (it wasn’t 10%, but whenever I swore-that’s another blog..lol!) when I became a “Christian”. I really never was taught on this topic from a Biblical perspective. It took me awhile to start giving 10% and knowing it’s the Lord’s as He owns everything anyways. It’s like giving it “back” to Him showing Him our gratitude of His blessings…

Bible

What does the Bible say about Christian tithing? Should a Christian tithe? .gotquestions.org
“…Tithing is an Old Testament concept. The tithe was a requirement of the Law in which the Israelites were to give 10 percent of the crops they grew and the livestock they raised to the tabernacle/temple (Leviticus 27:30; Numbers 18:26; Deuteronomy 14:24; 2 Chronicles 31:5). In fact, the Old Testament Law required multiple tithes—one for the Levites, one for the use of the temple and the feasts, and one for the poor of the land—which would have pushed the total to around 23.3 percent. Some understand the Old Testament tithe as a method of taxation to provide for the needs of the priests and Levites in the sacrificial system.

After the death of Jesus Christ fulfilled the Law, the New Testament nowhere commands, or even recommends, that Christians submit to a legalistic tithe system. The New Testament nowhere designates a percentage of income a person should set aside, but only says gifts should be “in keeping with income” (1 Corinthians 16:2). Some in the Christian church have taken the 10 percent figure from the Old Testament tithe and applied it as a “recommended minimum” for Christians in their giving. ..”
What Does the Bible Say About Giving 10 Percent? – OpenBible.info openbible.info
What Does the Bible Say About Tithes And Offering? – OpenBible.info openbible.info
What does the Bible say about Christian tithing?


“Published on Jun 25, 2013

The New Testament nowhere designates a percentage of income a person should set aside, but only says it is to be “in keeping with income” (1 Corinthians 16:2). Some in the Christian church have taken the 10 percent figure from the Old Testament tithe and applied it as a “recommended minimum” for Christians in their giving. The New Testament talks about the importance and benefits of giving. We are to give as we are able. Sometimes that means giving more than 10 percent; sometimes that may mean giving less. It all depends on the ability of the Christian and the needs of the church. Every Christian should diligently pray and seek God’s wisdom in the matter of participating in tithing and/or how much to give (James 1:5). Above all, all tithes and offerings should be given with pure motives and an attitude of worship to God and service to the body of Christ. “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).

Tithing is an Old Testament concept. The tithe was a requirement of the law in which all Israelites were to give 10 percent of everything they earned and grew to the Tabernacle/Temple (Leviticus 27:30; Numbers 18:26; Deuteronomy 14:24; 2 Chronicles 31:5). In fact, the Old Testament Law required multiple tithes which would have pushed the total to around 23.3 percent, not the 10 percent which is generally considered the tithe amount today. Some understand the Old Testament tithe as a method of taxation to provide for the needs of the priests and Levites in the sacrificial system. The New Testament nowhere commands, or even recommends, that Christians submit to a legalistic tithe system. Paul states that believers should set aside a portion of their income in order to support the church (1 Corinthians 16:1-2).”

-Finances

Dave’s Advice on Tithing and Giving, from daveramsey.com
“…So why does He ask us to give 10% to Him? Tithing was created for our benefit. It is to teach us how to keep God first in our lives and how to be unselfish people. Unselfish people make better husbands, wives, friends, relatives, employees and employers. God is trying to teach us how to prosper over time.

Many people have observed that after they stopped tithing, their finances seemed to get worse. In the Book of Malachi, God promises that if you do not rob Him of your tithing, He will rebuke your devourers and protect you.

If you cannot live off 90% of your income, then you cannot live off 100%. It does not require a miracle for you to get through the month. I think that if you sit down and look at your budget, you will see that you can make it while giving at least 10%. Read the Bible and take from it what you will, and if you tithe, do it out of love for God, not guilt…”
Wife And I Disagree On Tithing

-Teachings

Todd White – Financial Blessing & Living a Holy lifestyle

-Testimonies

Financial Blessing Testimonies: Man Proves God’s Promises True By Remaining Faithful in Giving Despite Money Problems By John Leuven Lasan on December 13 2016 09:32 PM citizenoracle.com

One of the most common things that we hear people say is that God moves in “mysterious ways.” And this proves true in every aspect of people’s lives, which can only make sense because once we understand that His ways are higher than ours, we will be able to appreciate how God surprises His people with the way He works, be it with a financial blessing or any other aspect of our lives. For example, let us take the testimony of Richard and Lynn and see how being true to God has given them so much more than what they expected.”
When You Bless Others It does Come back: My Testimony How God blessed me. , from youtube.com
“Published on Apr 22, 2013

The Bible still is true, when you do something for someone else God truly does give back in a double portion. I just wanted to share my testimony of what happened to me. When I needed God’s Help he was there right on time. Angels truly do encamp around us. God is So good. He gave through for me.”
Imagine Living Life Debt-Free!
With a garden and an orchard in their back yard, Frank and Gail Smith are experts at growing a variety of fruits and vegetables.
“With a garden and an orchard in their back yard, Frank and Gail Smith are experts at growing a variety of fruits and vegetables.“We have peaches and cherries and apricots and plums,” says Frank. “The mandarins and the pomelos, which come off in December, are just – they’re to die for.”They know getting a good crop depends on how much they put into it.”

Sal: I currently give 10% of my pay check (ft-job) to the local church and then give an offering (extra-from pt-job or other financial blessings) to missions or community needs.

Good News Financial
https://www.facebook.com/groups/426559690751225/

Deep Thought: Legalism in the Church of tithing??

I decided to write on this topic after a “close friend” told me about a church in the city kind of pressures people to “tithe” 10%. I told him that I used to be part of this “cultish” like church group that forced their attendees to tithe 10% also. I didn’t stay long enough for me to do it, but I heard that they would collect your bank account information and would have you automatically transfer that 10% automatically to their “church” denomination. I was still young in my Christian faith and it just didn’t “sound right” based on what I’ve read so far in the Bible. I ended up leaving this particular group even though I enjoyed the Bible study portion of their get-togethers/fellowship as I was “hungry” (seeking the faith).

What I can personally testify from my experiences of tithing is that I do this as an act of “obedience” of my faith based on what I’ve been taught and read via Scriptures. I’ve seen results of tithing 10% of my income every Sunday as I’ve been blessed (e.g. financially). Plus, I do it “cheerfully” knowing it’s going to be used for building God’s Kingdom (e.g. faith that what I’m giving is helping my local church’s mission of “reaching out to the lost” and “making disciples of all nations”). If you are uncertain on whether you should give to your local church. I suggest exploring the mission of your local church and if you believe in it-is it Biblical?

I’m no expert in this topic, so I decided to share some resources that I found credible to help answer some question “we” all may have on this topic:

Teachings

Lesson 4: Why You Should NOT Tithe (Selected Scriptures), bible.org
“…The Bible teaches that God, who richly has supplied us with all good things, wants us “to be generous and ready to share” (1 Tim. 6:18). But what does generosity mean? Isn’t giving 10 percent of my income to the Lord’s work being generous? If not 10 percent, how much should I give?..”

Before I critique this view, let me point out that there are some commendable points regarding tithing: (1) Those who tithe are often acting in obedience to what they believe God has commanded. (2) Tithing gets some to increase what they give. (3) Tithing helps consistency and discipline in giving. But consider these seven reasons why tithing is not God’s standard for Christians:

A. Tithing was a part of the law of Moses; believers are not under the law…

What does the Bible say about Christian tithing? Should a Christian tithe? gotquestions.org
“… Answer: Many Christians struggle with the issue of tithing. In some churches giving is over-emphasized. At the same time, many Christians refuse to submit to the biblical exhortations about making offerings to the Lord. Tithing/giving is intended to be a joy and a blessing. Sadly, that is sometimes not the case in the church today…”
Tithing – You Do Not Need To Give 10% To The Church!


“TO LEARN HOW TO BE SAVED click on “Show more” below.
Please visit: http://graceimpact.org/

Original Message Title: “The Wrong Time To Tithe”
Order # 1156″

Comments:

“…I have seen a change in my life while I have been contributing tithes……God don’t owe me anything for doing that. I wanna continue being obedient to the lord to express my love. If giving money is my toughest sacrifice then god is worthy because Christ sacrifice his life for me...”

The Legalism Lie of Tithing, or the lack of faith of those who demand it.



“Has a pastor or some other church leader ever told you that you must tithe because that is what the Bible says you should give? Have you been told that “you’re not giving generously to God” or that “you’re robbing God” (Mal. 3:8-9) because you’re not giving at least 10% of your gross income to your local church? Have you been instructed that “giving 10% is a good starting point” for your giving, meaning that you should give at least 10%? Have you been told that “you should at least tithe because you can’t out-give God”? ..”

Comments:

” Tiny Teardrops 1 year ago
I am a firm believer in helping others, and giving to a worthy cause. I try to donate & help anywhere I can, when I can. I have always enjoyed helping people, especially children & even animals.
· 1..”

Above are just “some” of many websites/videos I found on this topic. Feel free to search for more, but key thing is “seeking” our Heavenly Father about it. Feel free to share any suggestions, comments, stories, etc…

Good News Ministry
https://www.facebook.com/groups/313230752154108/

How can we hear from God “clearer”?

Burning Bush Scene-How can we hear God today?…

Feel free to share any feedback, suggestions, thoughts, etc… on any of the topics related to this blog in the comments below as we all as a global community can equip one another on “how we can hear God clearer”?

http://asian.goodnewseverybody.com/filipino.hearobey.html
*notes from a conference (“Hear & Obey”) I took

Movies

  • The “Gravity” Prayer from gracelifethoughts.com
  • “.. No one will mourn for me … No one will pray for my soul. … I’ve never prayed. … Nobody has taught me how.”

    There’s more to the movie – a lot more – but I will leave that out in case you have not seen it yet. What I’d like to focus on is what I’ll call “The Gravity Prayer.”…

    One reflection I would like to make after watching this video again is when God asked Moses to take his sandals off. I saw that as symbol of “us” needing to come to Him with a heart of repentance (humbly going to Him with a heart of forgiveness of our sins). We need to come to Him with a “clean” heart as He is a “holy” God. How can we do that? (Answer: Salvation through a personal relationship with His Son-Yeshua/Jesus Christ)

    How to HEAR GOD and SEE VISIONS pt1 (GOOD TEACHING!)

    How can “we” hear God? How do you pray? What is the purpose of prayer?

    Good News Prayer
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/609542502392314/

    Sharing God’s Love in Our City’s Streets?

    Do you ever encounter “homeless” people begging you for money whenever you walk the streets of a city or even driving around a neighborhood? What do you do? Do we walk pass them to ignore them? What would Jesus do?

    Story 1

    I admit, I have many times ignored these individuals because I was in a hurry or just had bad “judgment” on them. Well, last weekend I decided to “do something” . I was walking from

    Target Field Hosts All-Star Game 2014http://salphotobiz.smugmug.com/Sports/baseball/MLB-Fan-Fest-2014

    …to the Minneapolis Convention Center on a Sunday morning (July 13th 2014). I was there for the All-Star festivities (e.g. Fan Fest). As I was walking towards Nicollet Avenue, a guy came by walking besides me asking for money. I then told him I rather not give him money, but instead of food. He declined and asked for money to buy some food instead. Well, he was very persistent, which I kept being persistent. I then “tried” to quote a Bible verse “Silver or gold I don’t have, but I have Jesus” (paraphrased this because I forgot the exact order..lol).

    Nicollet Avenue decorated with the All-Star Game theme for week of festivities.http://www.virtualtourist.com/travel/North_America/United_States_of_America/Minnesota/Minneapolis-813712/Things_To_Do-Minneapolis-Nicollet_Mall-BR-1.htmlhttp://www.downtownmpls.com/page/show/227787-shopjavascript:%20void(0);

    Anyways, he just continued to walk with me to Nicollet Avenue as he shared his name (Isaac). I then smiled and replied, “that’s a name in the Bible”. He then said, “I know, I’m already born-again and saved” (I questioned myself in thought, “what is he doing here then?”). Anyways, I know we all go through some “wildernesses”, so I wanted to help this guy out to build his faith too. I asked him about his background, which he told me he already has a job. However, it’s only with a temp agency. I’ve had jobs with temp agencies before, so I somewhat can relate. I asked him what he’s good at , but he was persistent about the money thing again. Along the walk, I noticed a street preacher (lady) reading Bible verses, which is the same corner where I’ve seen others before. I thought to my self that this is so ironic! I then told him to come to Morris where there are many jobs available. He said, he might do this in the future. I then asked about his family, which he told me he has siblings in Indiana. I asked what made him move here from there. He replied, the “jobs opportunities”.

    Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

    We then sat down in a bench where there were other “homeless” people around the area getting ready for the “big day” to beg for money. I told him I would love to pray for him about his current circumstances, which he obliged. I was chatting too much as I was holding his hand about to pray that he told me, “I thought we were going to pray together”. I stopped talking and started praying for him with a smile. He then persistently ask for money again, so I told him “no” and took him to the Walgreens around the corner. I told him he can get whatever he “needs”, so he shopped around and picked a deli sandwich and a snack (?). I even told him to get a drink as it’s supposed to get warm later on. He picked a drink and kindly double checked if he can get one. We then went to the counter and I bought his items As we left the store, I gave him more encouraging words (forgot what I said) as he joined his peers by the bench we were sitting before to pray.

    I then continued my way to the Minneapolis Convention Center for Fan Fest 2014!

    T-Mobile All-Star FanFesthttp://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/events/all_star/y2014/index.jsp?content=asg_fanfestJoin MLB at 2014 T-Mobile All-Star FanFest http://youtu.be/YOcGbH5ktFo

    Story 2

    I had to share this story because this was another unique individual homeless guy. I was walking to church (St. Paul Cathedral) with my parents last evening for mass (church service). I noticed this “homeless” guy fixing his bicycle that was upside down-along with his personal stuff on the side of the sidewalk besides the church entrance. I was about to ask if he needed help, but I just continued to walk past him and up the stairs to the entrance. I was inclined to turn around, but decided to do so after we got to our pew after the “procession” (priest and team walking from the back to the front and do an intro) in the church building. During this time, I thought of that “forward email story” about the church people passing by this homeless guy and no one did anything. The “church people” didn’t realize that homeless guy was actually their “new pastor” , which he would later share..that’s it-that was the “sermon message” itself..

    Church Mistreats Homeless Man Who is Pastor in Disguise

    Churchgoers Ignored the Pleas of A ‘Homeless’ Man. An Hour Later They Cried from Shame. TeamGodVine last update 07/09/2017, 11:06 PM godvine.com
    “…A Pastor transformed himself into a homeless person and went to the 10,000-member church that he was to be introduced as the head pastor at that morning. He walked around his soon to be church for 30 minutes while it was filling with people for service, only 3 people out of the 7-10,000 people said hello to him. He asked people for change to buy food – no one in the church gave him change…
    He went into the sanctuary to sit down in the front of the church and was asked by the ushers if he would please sit in the back. He greeted people to be greeted back with stares, dirty looks, and people looking down on him. As he sat in the back of the church, he listened to the church announcements and such. When all that was done, the elders went up and were excited to introduce the new pastor of the church to the congregation. “We would like to introduce to you our new Pastor.” The congregation looked around clapping with joy and anticipation. The homeless man sitting in the back stood up and started walking down the aisle. The clapping stopped with all eyes on him. He walked up the altar and took the microphone from the elders (who were in on this) and paused for a moment then he recited,

    “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

    “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

    “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ ‘The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

    After he recited this, he looked towards the congregation and told them all what he had experienced that morning. Many began to cry, and many heads were bowed in shame. He then said, “Today I see a gathering of people, not a church of Jesus Christ. The world has enough people, but not enough disciples. When will YOU decide to become disciples?” He then dismissed service until next week.

    Following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ should be more than just talk. It ought to be a lifestyle that others around you can love about you and share in.” Be a Christian all you want, but at least follow the teachings of Christ if you’re going to claim the title.

    Matthew 25:35-45…”

    Well, I felt the urge to to be used by God to reach out to this man in case no one else did by the “church building”. When I went down the stairs, I noticed this guy was ready to head out as his bicycle was in the upright position and all his belongings that was scattered was all packed up. I went over and asked if his bicycle was all fixed. He told me, yes and explained what was wrong (e.g. loose chain). He would not stop talking after that as he would end up sharing a lot about his situation after some “curiosity” question…

    “Name is Patrick and originally from Des Moines-Iowa. I have been traveling all over the country. I plan to stay at a motel in Cottage Grove (Sal: “I told him that the bike trail from downtown to Cottage Grove is block due to construction”. I knew this before as I tried to ride my bike from where my parents live in the East Side to Downtown St. Paul). Would you be able to drive me? (Sal: “I told him that I would if I had a bigger vehicle and I explained to myself that I’m in the middle of “mass” with my parents). He then shared that he knows the people at the motel and then started sharing about his past-” I have to be careful of girls/ladies, I have to keep out of trouble (Sal: thinking that he was in trouble in the past and running away from it). I did drugs, like meth and other types of drugs… (Sal: He mention others, but can’t remember)…(Sal: He was non-stop in telling me some other stuff that I don’t remember what else he shared). He knew I just came from church, so he shared about Christians he has met (Sal: I noticed an African American guy just walking away after chatting with him and Patrick just put a Bible with his “stuff” packed in the back of his bicycle)…

    ..I started to grow in compassion for him with discernment (asking God what to do and say as I didn’t want to be lied too as I have been with past conversations with homeless people). I shared earlier how he has a cool name and I reminded him of “St. Patick”, which I wasn’t able to share more as he was “non-stop” in chatting /sharing with me. I noticed my time was long and my parents were probably wondering where I am. I didn’t want to leave without at least praying for him. I asked if I could pray for him, so I quickly did . I was closing my eyes, but opened to realize he started to kneel. I felt like I should’ve kneeled with him. I remembered one of the teaching at a church conference to pray with people in the “same level” as a sign of humility. I felt bad I didn’t as I wondered what people around me were thinking. After praying for him, I decided to give him some “change” (cash) to help him out . I then told him to stay away from those drugs with a smile :), which he told me he will and started to chat more. I showed him with my body movements that I had to leave, which I felt I could’ve stayed longer to hear more of his story. I had so many questions based on what he already shared. For example, what drew him to the streets? I felt like something bad he did and left/ran away from home because of shame. I forgot to pray about that, so let’s pray together…

    “Heavenly Father, we lift Patrick up to you. We ask that You personally reveal your compassion to him and heal him of any past hurts. May you used another follower of Yours to share the “Good News” with him. We pray that the “seeds of faith” that others and I have shared will grow..in Jesus’ name..Amen”

    Thanks for praying for me. I actually have been praying for him before writing this blog as there were other things I wished I could’ve done to “reach out” to him more. It seems like God has really touched my heart this past week about “reaching out to” homeless people with other related events (e.g. Prior to mass last night, I shared various videos of “reaching out” to homeless people after I won free tickets to this music event earlier last month that was given by this Christian non-profit organization called “Union Gospel Mission Twin Cities“..

    I forgot to tell him about this homeless shelter with the few chance to share/talk as he was a “chatter box”. I was able to tell him about Minnesota Teen Challenge after he shared about his drug use and later “alcohol” use (shared that he’s been sober for 6 months). This was part of my prayer that God will protect him from temptation and the addiction.

    Well, that was my personal story this unique encounter. When I returned back to mass, I came in the middle of the priest’s message (e.g. important to talk with God at least 10 minutes a day…) as I missed the 3 readings. My parents never asked where I went too as I was going to share until they asked me, but I probably should since I remembered my mom asking earlier today, “are you mad for some reason..?”. I didn’t correlate the two as I thought it was about something else.

    The following day (today), I went to my local church in St. Paul. The pastor shared in his message about reaching to those homeless people with signs (see one of my related stories-> Folks with Signs Along the Highway Exit Ramps Part 1 ) along the highway exit ramps. I just feel this has been a theme that God is trying to show me and the “church body” to NOT forget about these people. What about you?

    What do you think? Did I do the “right” thing? Is this what Jesus would’ve done? Did I share God’s love? What could’ve I done better?

    Good News Sociology
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/139706352858524/