God

Mar 28, 2017 by Will Maule

5 Reasons Christians Do Not HAVE To Tithe

Giving is often a dreaded subject for pastors to preach on. Too often, we view financial giving as an obligation more than a privilege. We need to learn how to give with joy and seek to bless! That being said, Biblically there is no definitive 'requirement' for Christians do to so. Thomas Schreiner at The Gospel Coalition highlights 5 reasons why this is the case. 

1. Believers are no longer under the Mosaic covenant (Rom. 6:14–15; 7:5–6; Gal. 3:15–4:7; 2 Cor. 3:4–18). 
"The commands stipulated in the Mosaic covenant are no longer in force for believers. Some appeal to the division between the civil, ceremonial, and moral law to support tithing. Yet these divisions, I would observe, are not the basis Paul uses when addressing how the law applies to us today. And even if we use these distinctions, tithing is clearly not part of the moral law. It’s true the moral norms of the Old Testament are still in force today, and we discern them from the law of Christ in the New Testament, but tithing is not among these commands."

2. Tithes were given to the Levites and priests, but there are no Levites and priests in the new covenant. 
"Levites and priests were tied to the sacrificial system of the old covenant. Now all believers are priests (1 Pet. 2:9; Rev. 1:6; 5:10; 20:6), with Jesus as our Melchizedekian high priest (Heb. 7)."

3. The tithe is tied to the land Israel received under the old covenant. 
"Israel was supposed to celebrate a tithe every three years in Jerusalem. But that requirement cannot apply to Christians today. It related to the Jews as a nation—to Jews who lived in the land of promise. With the coming of Christ, the Jewish nation is no longer the locus of God’s people, though individual Jews are part of the church through faith in Jesus. The earthly Jerusalem is no longer central in God’s purposes (Gal. 4:25). Believers are part of the heavenly Jerusalem (Gal. 4:26) and look forward to the city to come (Heb. 11:10), to the new heavens and new earth (Rev. 21:1–22:5). Abraham isn’t heir of the land of Israel, but of the whole world (Rom. 4:13)."

4. When Jesus affirmed the tithe, it was before the dawn of the new covenant.
"Some defend tithing by saying Jesus praised tithing, even if he said it was less important than other things (Matt. 23:23; Luke 11:42). This argument appears strong, but it’s not persuasive. Jesus also mentioned offering sacrifices in the temple (Matt. 5:23–24), but Christians don’t think—even if the temple were rebuilt—that we should do that. Our Lord’s words are understandable when we think about his location in redemptive history."

5. Nowhere is tithing mentioned when commands to give generously are found in the New Testament. 
"When Christians are instructed to give to the poor, they aren’t commanded to give “the poor tithe.” Instead, they are instructed to be generous in helping those in need (Acts 2:43–47; 4:32–37; 11:27–30; Gal. 2:10; 1 Cor. 16:1–4; 2 Cor. 8:1–9:15). For example, 1 Corinthians 16:1–4—a passage often cited in popular circles in support—doesn’t mention tithing; it relates to a one-time gift for poor saints in Jerusalem."

So, should this persuade you not to give? NO! We are blessed to be a blessing, and should have a healthy heart towards giving. Live generously, give much, and love God with all your strength! Amen!



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