Saturday, December 18, 2010

Does God need our Tithe to fulfill His Great Commission?

Q: Should every believer tithe for the Church to have enough money to carry out the Lord's work? Must all believers learn the way to earn riches for the purpose of tithing?

 I believe that God's work done in God's time will not lack funds for the propagation of the gospel to the whole world. God is more concerned to reach the souls of men with the gospel than some of us can even imagine. He has promised to fulfill it through the Church of the end time before all hell breaks loose during the reign of Antichrist (Matt 24:14). God is not a beggar in order to depend on the money of His people to fulfill His promise. In other words, the eternal destiny of souls are not dependant on whether we give our tithe to the Church faithfully or not. God says in His Word, "The earth is the LORD’s, and all its fullness, the world and those who dwell therein." (Psa 24:1) and also "'The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts." (Haggai 2:8). Do you think that the Lord who owns the earth and who owns all the silver and gold in the entire earth need money through His people to fulfill HIS PROMISE? Woe to the man/woman who thinks like that. May we truly believe that giving to the kingdom of God, no matter how much we give is a privilege and a opportunity given to the people of God to be thankful for His daily care, salvation from sin and His blessings in all the realm of our existence. Jesus and His Apostles never taught any 10 points technique to "earn riches for the purpose of tithing". When Jesus wanted to pay taxes he sent Apostle Peter the fisher man who is a seasoned professional to "...go to the sea, cast in a hook, and take the fish that comes up first. And when you have opened its mouth, you will find a piece of money; take that and give it to them for Me and you.” (Matt 17:27). To think in the natural Apostle Peter as a seasoned fisherman could have reasoned within himself and said that it is a foolish thing to do, but because of learning obedience from Jesus, without any word he went and must have indeed found just as Jesus said. What does it show to us? It shows that God knows how to fund HIS PROGRAMME and bring it to rich fulfillment. If only we obey the word of the Lord to proclaim the gospel by faith with all supernatural signs, we will soon reach out to all corners of the globe with the good news of Jesus Christ in our generation itself. Money is not a constraint with God, but our obedience to His word is. Praise the Lord!

Instead of encouraging the believers to pursue riches, the Apostles warned the believer's again and again to be careful regarding going in pursuit of riches rather than God. Apostle Paul instructed his apostolic son Timothy to warn believers saying, 
" 17 Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy. 18 Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, 19 storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life." (1 Tim 6:17-19)'Command' is a strong word which also means 'to forcibly tell someone, to make people obey, persuade people to follow by commanding authoritatively'. The reason he said particularly the rich believers in the present age not to be haughty and trust in uncertain riches is because riches are very much temporary (Matt 6:19). The reason God gives riches to certain people is to make them share it with the saints and to be ready to give for the kingdom extension and the preaching of the Gospel to the ends of the world (Acts 4:34-37). To the rich believers in the present age their riches is a test God gives to them in order to qualify them for true eternal riches ahead (Matt 6:19-21; Luke 16:9-13). Others who do not have such riches in the present age should not desire to be be rich, but seek the kingdom of God [i.e. godliness] with contentment so that they can gain great eternal riches in heaven (Matt 6:19-20, 33; 1 Tim 6:6). Those who are not rich in the present age and are not at all content with enough food and clothing that God has given them abundantly, to them Apostle Paul warns saying, "9 But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." (1 Tim 6:9-10). In other words, the greedy believers lose to enjoy the abundant life of God that has been given to them already, instead become miserable in the present time due to falling in to soulish curses that destroys them (John 10:10; 1 Peter 2:11). Tithing is not a command to any believers in the New Testament, but a voluntary oppurtunity God has given them to be thankful for what God has already given them spiritually in this earthly life to enjoy through His Son (Eph 1:3).

When we start to offer our everything first, then automatically we will be giving to God more than the tithe we pay 
[i.e. the very ownership of all that we own]. God deserves our everything because He is the real Creator and the owner of all cosmos and universe. Tithing done to gain acceptance with God or blessing of God is not right because it becomes a law and a ritual rather than a loving relationship with a God who blesses us irrespective of our behavior in the New Covenant (Eph 1:3). May God help us all to understand His intention in telling us to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice rather than just give our tithe as a means to justify ourselves of our so called spirituality (Rom 12:1)God Bless You!                      


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