Why Should We Tithe?
Many years ago my brother explained that he regularly tithed, donating a large amount of his money to the charity of his choice. He didn’t have the time to investigate worthy causes and asked me to distribute his money for him. I set out to share his money. I had a lot of fun distributing cash and focused on agencies and organizations that had a personal impact in my life. I was proud to help out even though it wasn’t my money.
I had a sense of wonder at the large amount of money my brother regularly gave away. My curiosity got the best of me and I asked him, “Don’t you think it’s a little risky to be giving away so much of your money? Aren’t you afraid you won’t have any left for yourself?”
My brother was raised in the faith – as was I. Yet, I don’t remember learning about tithes and offerings. I know that my parents regularly gave money on Sundays, however, I didn’t have a full understanding of why. My brother, who has an acute sense of finance and has learned from financial gurus such as Robert Kiyosaki, explained to me from a financial perspective that the more one gives away, the more is returned.
At that time, I was reading many self-help books that seemed to agree with this philosophy. Sarah Ban Breathnach wrote, “We can keep a constant flow of money in our daily round through giving with love and paying what we owe with gratitude.”
Richard Carlson, author of Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff about Money wrote, “Giving is an energy that not only helps others but creates even more for the person who is doing the giving…Everything you give away will return, with interest!”
What I later learned was that this in fact is a biblical principle. The Bible instructs us to tithe from what we earn, giving for the Lord’s work an amount proportionate to our income.
“On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income” (1Corinthians 16:2 NIV).
I learned that God actually wants us to test Him on this principle. He tells us to tithe as His word instructs and He will bless us abundantly. If we are generous with God, He will be generous with us. He wants us to try it out and see for ourselves if it is true. I plan to take this test. I plan to tithe my money, my time and my things to God. I plan to test God on His word. I challenge you to do the same.
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this, says the LORD Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it (Malachi 3:10 NIV).
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