hope for churches in stress

One tenth

Jesus talked a lot about money because he wanted to change hearts. “For where your treasure is,” he said, “there your heart will be also” (Mt. 6:21).

Jesus expected his disciples to give much—in fact, to give everything (Mt. 12:41-44; 19:16-22, 27-29). As a place to start, a tithe is helpful.

A tithe (literally, one tenth) acknowledges that all of our money comes from God (Deut. 26:10). We can say this in words, of course; but by the action of giving 10% of our earnings to God, we declare that we mean what we say.

The OT practice was to bring tithes to the temple (Deut. 26:2). For us, the equivalent would be to give our whole tithe to our home church.

Some people spread their tithe, a little here and a little there, with some to their home church. However, if God gives us the privilege of managing 90% of the money entrusted to us, should we also insist on directing the 10% we specially give for God?

Some people withhold (or designate) their tithe as a way of “voting” for or against someone or something in the church. Our tithe is simply and solely to be a declaration to God: “Everything I have belongs to you.”

We want our hearts to be fully devoted to God. So we place our treasure, beginning with a tithe, in God’s hands. Then we find ways to give more, even to give everything.

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