8. First fruits, tithes and offerings

   

The bible in the Old Testament speaks of both the first-fruits….and firstborn frequently. It also speaks of tithes in other places. It is claimed by many preachers that because the bible refers to the first-fruits and firstborn as belonging to God…..that this supports their claim that even today people’s tithes of their income also belong to God….and as such should be given to God by being brought to the local ‘church’ (which is the storehouse where you are fed) where they are to be administered by the ‘pastor’ for the work of kingdom of God.

 

This is not the teaching of the New Testament scriptures. One could be justified in concluding that this teaching, with its convoluted support, is no more than the covetous invention of greedy shepherds of whom the scriptures warn us as sheep to be aware in many passages. It is propagated only because those who know the truth will not speak up and silence the mouths as instructed by Paul in the following scripture.

 

Titus 1:10-14

For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, 11 whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain……….Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, 14 not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth.       NKJV

2 Thess 3:6-9

But we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly and not according to the tradition which he received from us. 7 For you yourselves know how you ought to follow us, for we were not disorderly among you; 8 nor did we eat anyone's bread free of charge, but worked with labor and toil night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, 9 not because we do not have authority, but to make ourselves an example of how you should follow us.    NKJV
 

 

There are many reasons why so few preachers and the church leaders are speaking up to refute this heresy. These reasons include 1) self interest 2) loyalty agreements 3) false ‘honor’ doctrines 4) ignorance 5) fear of challenging the ‘anointed man of God’.

 

Located ‘pastors’ who are no more than elders scripturally refuse to follow the scriptural pattern, which requires that they either work or rely on freewill offerings from the saints they minister to when they travel. They teach this deception because they believe that it is the only way they can raise sufficient funds to finance their visions and lifestyles. The teaching of this doctrine is a demonstration either of their lack of faith….or their lack of knowledge…or their lack of integrity. For these they will answer to God.

 

I have decided however, that I will not be one who is responsible for failing to speak out against the deception. (Titus 1:11)

 

Eph 5:11
11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.   NKJV
 

This deception needs to be dismantled step by step and exposed to be such for anyone who can read the bible…and has ears to hear the what the Spirit says to the churches.

 

The Spirit of Truth, which is the anointing that abides in ALL God’s children, (1 John 2:20 &27) will NEVER contradict the Word of Truth.

 

What does God want us to do

 

In the Old Testament for the majority of Jews it was as simple as

 

Mic 6:8

8 He has shown you, O man, what is good;

And what does the LORD require of you

But to do justly,  To love mercy, 

And to walk humbly with your God?       NKJV

 

Today as Gentile believers under the New Covenant 

 

1) Believe in Jesus as the Son of God….and your savior   (John 1:12-13, John 3:16…and numerous other scriptures)

 

2) Do the obvious things which are fruits of a transformed life….ie Acts 15:28-29 For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: 29 that you abstain from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well.  NKJV

 

3) Love others because God first loved us…..and especially show his love to the poor

 

Gal 2:9-10

10 They desired only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do.     NKJV

 

To this most churches today add that in order to receive God’s blessings on your life you must “obey the ‘command’ to tithe”….and bring offerings….and sow …and honor the prophet….and give sacrificially.

 

The above claims are ‘adding to the word of God’ other supposedly ‘necessary things’ (Contrary to Acts 15)...This constitutes the New Testament version of TESTING GOD (vs10)

 

This addition is an offense to the cross and alters the gospel which simply and clearly says that Jesus fulfilled ALL the requirements of the Law for us and that ALL we have to do to receive ALL God’s provision in the atonement for us, is to believe.

 

Some have argued that just as we are required to confess Jesus (Romans 10:9-10) …or be baptized (Acts 2:38) …or repent of your sins (Acts 2:38)…in order to be saved….in the same way we should ‘tithe’ in order to be blessed by God.

 

These requirements  (confession, baptism and repentance) are FRUITS of a genuine ‘new-birth’ encounter with God but they are NOT the cause of it. Tithing money to local churches, however, is in most cases no more than a demonstration that we have been deceived or co-erced into trying to ‘obey the LAW’ (Mat 23:23) in order to try and perfect the work of God in our lives by our own fleshly works! (contrary to Gal 3:3)

(This is not to deny that there are also those who genuinely desire to give to support their local church and feel that 10% is a level they would like to give and do so freely and without any deception or coercion...this is their right.)

 

To add any requirement to faith is to believe that our works contribute to our salvation. (contrary to Romans and Ephesians and Galatians).

ALL of God’s blessings are available to us by GRACE though faith alone (Eph 1:3) (Eph 2:8) (Rom 8:32) (Gal 3:1-5)

 

Gal 1:6-8

I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, 7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.     NKJV

 

Preachers of this deception and manipulation, you who would pervert the gospel of Jesus Christ, tread warily!

 

Does the Bible ever command Gentiles to tithe

 

Most certainly not!

 

All that false teachers can come up with is ‘this ought you to have done’ (Mat 23:23) Jesus was however, adressing the Pharisees and Jewish religious leaders of the day as a rebuke! And they also forget that Jesus said that under the Law, tithing is like ‘a gnat' which religious leaders are prone to straining out of the Law!

 

False teachers seem to ignore that Jesus in the same passage says that tithing is one of the ‘matters of the LAW’. This is confirmed because it is ONLY taught as a requirement in the books of the Law eg Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy….and Heb 7:5 says it is ‘now the Law requires…priests to collect a tenth ...from their brethren’   (confirmed ‘In the mouth of three witnesses’)

 

NB this means that anyone teaching that tithing was an ‘eternal spiritual principle’ is disagreeing with Jesus…the Holy Spirit ... and Paul!

(Christian, who are you going to believe?)

 

But let us look at what Jesus was referring to as the required tithes:-

 

  1. It was a tithe of food…ie mint, dill and cumin…money was NEVER tithed. Tithes were only ever to be of food produced from the promise land of Israel (Lev 27:30 and 32 Malachi 3:10...FOOD in my house)
  2. Tithes were only ever to be given by Israel….(Lev 27:34)… never required from Gentiles (Acts 15)
  3. Tithing was only ever to be given to the Levites under a ‘lasting covenant’ (Numbers 18:23)…never to pastors or church organizations
  4. Tithes were given to the Levites BECAUSE they had forfeited their land (Num 18:21-24)….this is something very few false teachers do while still demanding ‘tithes’
  5. Tithes were also to be eaten by the giver in celebration of God’s blessing (Deut 14:22-27) and shared with the POOR (vs 28-29)
  6. No tithes were paid in the seventh year....ie no crops were allowed to be grown

 

Jesus says that anyone who ‘changes one jot or tittle of the Law and teaches others to do so will be LEAST in the kingdom of Heaven’. (Mat 5:18-19) The vast majority of false teachers who preach 'storehouse money tithing' do far worse than this and will thereby ensure that their life’s work achieves NO reward in eternity. This is a very high price to pay for a lack of faith.

 

The apostles never taught tithing as a requirement…they only ever taught free-will giving. This is the doctrine we as Gentile believers are to follow.

 

Tithing being a ‘Law’ means it is something which is done ‘under compulsion’ contrary to scripture.

 

2 Cor 9:7

7 So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.    NKJV

 

Tithing is also shown as being a commandment under the Law (Heb 7:5) which is no longer necessary because the priesthood has been changed …Jesus is the High Priest and we are ALL priests today!

 

Heb 7:12

12 For the priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law.

 

Simply put …the curtain to the Holy of Holies was torn....the temple has been destroyed, sacrifices are ended and the Levitical priesthood (who are the ONLY people authorised to receive tithes), has been made obsolete….and replaced by the priesthood of ALL believers! Therefore its support system is no longer required. (unless you want to argue that we should 'tithe' to ourselves!)

 

Heb 7:18-19

18 For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment (yes this refers to the command to tithe in verse 5 of the same chapter) because of its weakness and unprofitableness, 19 for the law made nothing perfect; on the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.      NKJV

 

We as Gentile believers are not ‘under the Law’ of Moses …we have ‘a better hope’…there are about 40 scripture which confirm this.

 

Tithing taught as a requirement is contrary to Jesus teaching. Storehouse money tithing as satught by the vast majority of 'churches' is CONTRARY to the scriptures...it is SIN!

 

Matt 10:8

Freely you have received, freely give.   NKJV

 

Demanding a lifetime right to 10% of a persons future income (and according to some deceivers even their past income) is certainly not ‘freely giving’ the gospel.

 

JESUS defines the wages itinerant preachers are worthy of…It is ONLY to be freely offered hospitality (Mat 10:8 and Luke 10:7). Where are they authorized to demand MAMMON as wages?

 

Luke 16:13

13 "No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon."      NKJV

 

This is not a small matter which one can ‘assume is required’ because it is wanted, needed…or assumed to have been done in the Old Testament. Jesus and the apostles did NOT teach it or practice it and therefore to require it of the church who are Gentile Christians is wrong. Billions of dollars are being obtained by either extortion or fraud  from God's children worldwide every year by the preaching of this deception.

 

For pastors and teachers to teach tithing as a requirement is at best a negligent action and certainly a false doctrine. However their refusal to discuss and debate the details of the heresy, many times throwing people who disagree out of their churches, indicates that it is probably far more serious than this.

 

Pastors as the supposedly knowledgeable people in bible matters have a ‘duty of care’ and are legally and personally liable for their misrepresentations in this matter. (James 3:1)

 

The most logical …and very scary possibility …is that supposed ‘men of God’ are lying about what God requires……. they are deliberately misrepresenting His word….they are fraudulently extracting money from people who do not know better (often the poor)….and they are frequently prepared to use fear and guilt to manipulate and extort finances from people in order to maintain their supply of money.

 

Brethren, ask yourself if this could possibly be the ‘church that Jesus is building’?

 

Children of God, do not accept what your pastor says about this...or any other topic …without studying God’s word yourself. Let the Holy Spirit show you the truth. (Many so called ‘pastors’ are NOT feeding the sheep but fleecing them and feeding themselves instead!)

 

Now to refute once and for all the misrepresentations used to support the claim ‘first-fruits’ and ‘firstborn’ are the same as tithing and that they support the requirement for tithing of our income in any way today. We will examine the following illustrations from the bible which are frequently raised by proponents of the deception.

 

The Garden of Eden

 

Or….the misrepresentation of what the ‘tree of knowledge of good and evil’ was about. (This is a deception used by Brian Tamaki of Destiny church and many others to suggest that tithes were applicable even in the Garden of Eden)

 

The above tree was one that God told Adam he must not eat the fruit of … ‘for in the day that he ate of it he would surely die’ (Gen 2:17)…is claimed to be like the ‘tithe’.

 

This tree was NOT the first (the tree of Life was named first)…nor was it the ‘tenth’….it was probably one of a million or more trees in the Garden of Eden. There was no priesthood or any statement that 10% of its fruit should be given away. There was no need for 'offerings and scrifices' as they had not yet sinned. Any suggestion that this has any relevance to tithing …or ‘first-fruits’ is a total fabrication with an intention to deceive.

 

There were 2 trees in the middle of the garden...this speaks of God giving man a choice. To understand what the second tree means we need to understand what the first refers to.

 

The ‘Tree of Life’ is a reference to us trusting in God to save us because of HIS goodness. It is His unspoken offer to us to walk in a relationship of trust. It is an act of faith in Him which causes us to come into a relationship with Him as his children. It is man saying to God…. ‘You are God and I trust that you are good…and it is only by your goodness that I can relate to you and be like you’

 

Partaking of the ‘Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil’ is man failing to trust God …and questioning His goodness and His heart towards us. It is an act of ‘works of the religious flesh’ where we decide to set up our OWN standard of righteousness…. where we decide to BE our own ‘god’….where we come to God saying ‘look at what I have done …therefore I deserve to be like you’ (Mormons beware)

 

Ask yourself if when you come before God you will be like the Pharisee in Luke 18:12…. trumpeting your own good works…and your tithing…or will you come humbly acknowledging the grace of God provided to you in Christ’s atonement on the cross. Will you be the one who is justified?

  

Rom 3:20

20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.    NKJV 

 

Cain and Abel’s sacrifices

 

At the time of Cain and Abel there was no scriptural requirement to make sacrifices or offerings to God.

 

BUT they would have heard from Adam and Eve that God had been offended by their disobedience. It is likely that they sought to appease God and that would be why they brought offerings to the Lord.

 

Gen 4:3-5

3 And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the LORD. (it is only when we contrast this to Abel’s offering that we see the problem….It was NOT the first, nor was it the best! It also shows a lack of appreciation that only BLOOD can cover sins! Heb 9:22…and as implied in Gen 3:21)

4 Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. (the key words are ‘first’ and their ‘fat portions’…The first and the choice parts. It is also a type of Christ being the Lamb of God….God’s best….and his blood shed for the remission of our sins)

And the LORD respected Abel and his offering, 5 but He did not respect Cain and his offering.    NKJV

 

Heb 11:4

By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks.     NKJV

 

The fact that it produced righteousness is the key! …ie faith in God’s love for us and His provision for our reconciliation.

 

There is NO hint of this ever being money. (ie mammon would represent the work of man’s hands)

 

There is no hint that this was to be a ‘requirement’. The narrative is ‘descriptive and not prescriptive’

 

There is EVERY reason and many scriptures which would lead us to believe that this was an expression of FAITH in God’s work …a type of Jesus death for us….a shadow fulfilled in the New Covenant (Heb 10:1)

 

1 John 3:12
And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother's righteous.    NKJV
  

This does not speak of the murder...it speaks of the offerings they made. The only way in which Cain's works were evil was in that he came presenting the work of his own hands as a sacrifice...his own righteousness.....rather than a blood sacrifice which in faith looked for God's provision of a seed who whould bruise the serpent's head.

 

There is no hint that either Abel or Cain offered 10%…the contrary is inferred.

 

Jesus is the final and ultimate sacrifice …. once for ALL...There are to be NO  MORE SACRIFICES!

 

Heb 7:26-27

26 For such a High Priest was fitting for us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and has become higher than the heavens; 27 who does not need daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the people's, for this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.    NKJV

 

Gifts and offerings to God ... offered at 'altars' ... are 'FLESHLY ORDINANCES'... ie they are OLD Covenant ...and NOT part of the New Covenant where we now worship God 'in spirit and in truth'....rather than with 'external observances'!

 

Heb 9:9-10
9 It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience —  10 concerned only with foods and drinks, various washings, and fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation.    NKJV   

  

Brethren, we are now to serve God 'in spirit and in truth'....and not by 'external religious observation'

 

Heb 10:10

10 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.     NKJV

 

Heb 10:14-18

14 For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified. …… 18 Now where there is remission of these, there is no longer an offering for sin. NKJV

 

The scriptures do NOT tell us to bring MAMMON as an offering…we come to God bringing only Christ’s work for us!

 

First-fruits…what the bible says they are

 

In the Old Covenant men brought offerings and sacrificed them to God….usually on an altar where they were burnt.

 

Please note that there is not one example of money ever being ‘offered to God’….or brought to the altar. (Note that silver and gold were the common medium of exchange even before Abraham’s days... Gen 13:2)

 

First-fruits are defined by God in His word as the first small part of the crop which were offered in gratitude for His abundant blessing and provision.

Ex 23:19
19 The first of the firstfruits of your land you shall bring into the house of the LORD your God.    NKJV

 

...and guess what you were to do with it there?

Deut 26:1-11

"And it shall be, when you come into the land which the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, and you possess it and dwell in it, 2 that you shall take some of the first of all the produce of the ground, which you shall bring from your land that the LORD your God is giving you, and put it in a basket and go to the place where the LORD your God chooses to make His name abide. 3 And you shall go to the one who is priest in those days, and say to him, 'I declare today to the LORD your God that I have come to the country which the LORD swore to our fathers to give us.'

4 "Then the priest shall take the basket out of your hand and set it down before the altar of the LORD your God. 5 And you shall answer and say before the LORD your God: 'My father was a Syrian, about to perish, and he went down to Egypt and dwelt there, few in number; and there he became a nation, great, mighty, and populous. 6 But the Egyptians mistreated us, afflicted us, and laid hard bondage on us. 7 Then we cried out to the LORD God of our fathers, and the LORD heard our voice and looked on our affliction and our labor and our oppression. 8 So the LORD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm, with great terror and with signs and wonders. 9 He has brought us to this place and has given us this land, "a land flowing with milk and honey";   10 and now, behold, I have brought the first-fruits of the land which you, O LORD, have given me.'

"Then you shall set it before the LORD your God, and worship before the LORD your God. 11 So you shall rejoice in every good thing which the LORD your God has given to you and your house, you and the Levite and the stranger who is among you.     NKJV

 

GOD COMMANDS that you EAT your first-fruits in His presence as a celebration of His blessing on your life and His provision for you ... and to share it with the priests

 

Some quote the following extract as if it were the complete answer:-

Deut 18:4
4 The firstfruits of your grain and your new wine and your oil, and the first of the fleece of your sheep, you shall give him.   NKJV
 

BUT please note that this verse does NOT over-ride other clear teachings.... ie not ALL of the firstfruits was to be given to the priests.....it was given to them by SHARING it with them!

 

First-fruits were NEVER money earned by man….nor were they EVER 10%… They were only ever a hand carried basket of FOOD.

 

More than that they were food provided by GOD…the produce of the ground!

 

More than that they were ONLY to be from the promised LAND which God gave Israel.

 

More than that they were to be brought to the priest (we are all priests today).

 

More than that they were to be partaken of in a celebration by the giver together with the Levite and the stranger!

 

NOW in this context, let us look at what king David was referring to in the psalms

 

Prov 3:9-10

9 Honor the LORD with your possessions,

And with the first-fruits of all your increase;

10 So your barns will be filled with plenty,

And your vats will overflow with new wine.     NKJV

 

This is clearly not referring to MONEY (of which David had much)

 

Note that neither the apostles nor Jesus ever taught that ‘first-fruits’ giving was required of the Gentiles. (only faith expressing itself through love)

 

First-fruits …a shadow and a type fulfilled in Jesus resurrection

 

Heb 10:1

For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect.    NKJV

 

The shadow alluded to in the ‘first-fruits’ is shown as fulfilled in the following scripture:-

 

1 Cor 15:20-23

But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. 23 But each one in his own order: Christ the first-fruits, afterward those who are Christ's at His coming.    NKJV

 

Surely in this context it is offensive to suggest that first-fruits has any relationship to our money …that which we earn by the work of our hands.

 

 

Firstborn …what the bible says it is

 

The firstborn was not defined prior to the Law…as a formal requirement. Under the Law it was a requirement for Israel only….and never for the Gentiles.

Ex 13:1-2

Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2 "Consecrate to Me all the firstborn, whatever opens the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and beast; it is Mine."    NKJV
 

Ex 13:11-16

11 The Law of the Firstborn

"And it shall be, when the LORD brings you into the land of the Canaanites, as He swore to you and your fathers, and gives it to you, 12 that you shall set apart to the LORD all that open the womb, that is, every firstborn that comes from an animal which you have; the males shall be the LORD's. 13 But every firstborn of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb; and if you will not redeem it, then you shall break its neck. And all the firstborn of man among your sons you shall redeem. 14 So it shall be, when your son asks you in time to come, saying, 'What is this?' that you shall say to him, 'By strength of hand the LORD brought us out of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 15 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh was stubborn about letting us go, that the LORD killed all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man and the firstborn of beast. Therefore I sacrifice to the LORD all males that open the womb, but all the firstborn of my sons I redeem.'    NKJV

So what was to happen with the firstborn?... Was it to be given to the priests as is often taught today?

Deut 15:19-20

"All the firstborn males that come from your herd and your flock you shall sanctify to the LORD your God; you shall do no work with the firstborn of your herd, nor shear the firstborn of your flock. 20 You and your household shall eat it before the LORD your God year by year in the place which the LORD chooses.  NKJV
 

GOD required it to be sacrificed to HIM....and also to be EATEN by the giver and his family!      ...   READ IT IN YOUR BIBLE!

 

This sharing by the people of their sacrifice with the priests is demonstrated in 1 Samuel 2:12-17.

The Israelites and their families ATE the Passover lamb.

 

Deut 18:3

3 "And this shall be the priest's due from the people, from those who offer a sacrifice, whether it is bull or sheep: they shall give to the priest the shoulder, the cheeks, and the stomach.    NKJV
 

Today we do NOT offer sacrifices….except that we present ourselves as a ‘living sacrifice’ (Rom12:1)….and bring a ‘sacrifice of praise’ (Heb 13:15)….and ‘doing good and sharing’

 

We instead come before God in faith that the sacrifice of His first-born son Jesus is not only adequate but also complete. We add nothing to it….and most certainly not money or ‘mammon’ which would only represent the work of our hands.

 

Firstborn… a shadow and a type fulfilled in Jesus death

 

Heb 10:1

For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect.    NKJV

 

The shadow alluded to in the ‘firstborn’ is shown as fulfilled in the following scriptures:-

 

John 3:16-17

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.    NKJV

 

Rom 8:28-30

28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.    NKJV

 

Col 1:15

15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. NKJV

 

Col 1:18

18 And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.   NKJV

 

Rev 1:5

Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth.   NKJV

 

The firstborn is no more than a type or shadow of Jesus…God's firstborn...and his death and resurrection for our redemption!

 

The only link between the ‘firstborn’ and our tithes IS that both are of the Law....and NOT applicable to Gentiles!

 

OFFERINGS

 

Mal 3:8-10

"Will a man rob God?

Yet you have robbed Me!

But you say,

'In what way have we robbed You?'

In tithes and offerings.

9 You are cursed with a curse,

For you have robbed Me,

Even this whole nation.

10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse,

That there may be food in My house,

And try Me now in this,"

Says the LORD of hosts,

"If I will not open for you the windows of heaven

And pour out for you such blessing

That there will not be room enough to receive it.  NKJV

 

I doubt that ANY Christians practice ALL the offerings that were required in the Law. Here is a list that includes most of them:-

Ex 30:10 -16 Annual atonement
Ex 29:18 Burnt offering
Ex 13:12 First offspring of every womb
Ex 29:40 Drink offering
Lev 3:1 Fellowship offering
Lev 22:18 Freewill offering
Ex 29:41 Grain offering
Num 5:15 Grain offering for jealousy
Lev 5:15 Guilt offering
Num 5:26 Memorial offering
Num 28:14 Monthly burnt offering
Lev 7:37 Ordination offering
Lev 19:24 Praise offering for new fruit trees
Num 19:17 Purification offering
Num 5:15 Reminder offering
Ex 29:14 Sin offering
Lev 7:12 Thank offering

For those that insist on trying to "tithe" to avoid the curse and earn the blessings, their failure to keep the rest of Malachi 3:8 "Offerings" very seldom gets mentioned...and it means they will still be under the curse! (Gal 3:10)

 

Gifts and offerings to God ... offered at 'altars' ... are 'FLESHLY ORDINANCES'... ie they are OLD Covenant ...and NOT part of the New Covenant where we now worship God 'in spirit and in truth'....rather than with 'external observances'!

 

Heb 9:9-10
9 It was symbolic for the present time in which both gifts and sacrifices are offered which cannot make him who performed the service perfect in regard to the conscience —  10 concerned only with foods and drinks, various washings, and fleshly ordinances imposed until the time of reformation.    NKJV   

  

Brethren, we are now to serve God 'in spirit and in truth'....and not by 'external religious observation' 

 

 

SEEKING FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD

 

Matt 6:31-34

31 "Therefore do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?'  32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.   NKJV

 

The context of this scripture is not relating to the giving of money…it is to giving the highest priority to your relationship with God….specifically above your most important natural/physical needs (ie that of food and drink and clothing)

 

Jesus said "MY kingdom is NOT of this world"...Money is 'mammon' which certainly is 'of this world'....God instead asks for our hearts and our love.

 

This passage in NO way implies we should give to ‘churches’ first….merely that our relationship with GOD comes first.

 

Those who argue that if we put God first we should give our money ‘first’ to the work of God (usually being their ministries) do NOT have scriptural support…..they are merely ‘a vested interest posing as a biblical principle’

 

The way we give to GOD …according to Jesus anyway …is to give to the needs of the POOR (Mat 25). The apostles also taught this to the early church.

 

Gal 2:10

10 They desired only that we should remember the poor ….    NKJV

 

Having an open and a loving heart for the NEEDY is the ONLY desire….and not even a requirement! Though the love of Christ in us would drive us to desire to do this!

 

1 John 3:17

17 But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?     NKJV

 

The bible, however gives us another specific first obligation which I have NEVER heard taught in any church …being that of looking after our families and ageing parents!

 

1 Tim 5:4-8

4 But if any widow has children or grandchildren, let them first learn to show piety at home and to repay their parents; for this is good and acceptable before God….

8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.       NKJV

 

and paying our debts to those we owe money to …

 

Rom 13:7-8

7 Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.

8 Owe no one anything except to love one another,      NKJV

 

 

 

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