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How someone manages their finances and spends their money reveals a great deal about their values. God promises tithing will result in a blessing so abundant that "there will not be room enough to receive it" (Malachi 3:8-10).
The word ‘tithe’ comes from an old English word meaning 10 percent or a tenth. A tithe is 10 percent of one’s income, and when the Bible talks about tithing, it refers to setting one tenth of your increase aside for God.
Tithing is first mentioned as part of worshipping and honouring God in the context of Abraham, who is called “the friend of God” ( James 2:23). After Abraham rescued his nephew Lot, who had been taken prisoner by regional warlords, we are told Abraham gave Melchizedek a tithe, or a tenth of his possessions: “...Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine…,” and pronounced a blessing on Abraham, and then Abraham, “... gave him a tithe of all” (Genesis 14:18-20). (For further information about who Melchizedek was read the previous article in this issue: ’A Mystery Solved: The Identity Of Melchizedek’)
Jacob followed the example of his grandfather Abraham, and when God reconfirmed the promises He had made to Abraham Jacob promised God that "of all that You give me I will surely give a tenth to You" (Genesis 28:20-22).
Tithing has always been part of God’s plan for people. We see it in the various laws given in the Bible. Leviticus 27:30 says: “All the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s. It is holy to the Lord.”
God commands us to tithe to support the work He is doing here on earth. The Church has a divine commission to preach the gospel of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 28:18-20), and God has not left this most important work without a means to be financed.
We live in a world of various national economies under different forms of governance. None of them are founded upon the most basic spiritual principles of economic theory found in God’s Word. Tithing is one of these principles, and failing to tithe is actually to “rob God,” which brings a curse (Malachi 3:8-9).
Tithing demonstrates a deep faith and reverence toward God, as we see in the example of Abraham. It represents submitting to God’s claim on our lives, and recognizing Him as the source of our existence and blessings. Jesus Christ said, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21). God encourages us to step out and put God to the test in this matter which will result in great blessings (Malachi 3:10-12).
Beyond Today Magazine