I need to thank you for your research. God grabbed a hold of me this past Sunday regarding my ‘giving’ and opened my eyes to how I viewed him in light of tithing. I’ve been a tither since age 16 (I’m 44). Like you, I grew up in church my entire life and tithing is just what I learned. As I got older and took on debt, I gave and gave wondering when God was going to bless me in return. I ALWAYS tithed on the net because it was the first-fruit and then gave supplemental to make sure I was doing what I was supposed to do (see where this going, yet?) As I’ve heard “the more I give to God in the tithe, the bigger the blessing”.
Sunday, I wrote a check for my tithe while suppressing this under lying anger. I went to church and my pastor taught on being a good steward and how stupid we are as Christians for being such poor stewards (my words, not his). It didn’t sit well. He talked about getting out debt and giving correctly and living within our margins. I left church, and couldn’t shake this uneasiness. Then, as clear as day, I heard “you’re not a joyful giver”. I found your website later that night when I started researching tithing and discovered I’ve been serving a stone-cold god who I was tithing to in order to remain free from ‘the curse’.
For 28 years I’ve lived under the tyranny of the tithe. I gave out of compulsion, guilt and appeasement, though I didn’t see it. The God I saw regarding giving wasn’t the God who rises to show me compassion or embraces fully as his own. Your website showed me that, in a way, I’ve served two gods: God who loves me and the god of the tithe and I’ve lived oppressed and confused for too long because I could never make these two come together. As I have found out, it’s my heart, not my money, God is after and he’s trying to free my mind and life of dead religion.
I am still walking this out, but you need to know God is using all your hard work to set people free and I am really grateful for that. If I could ask anything of you, please just remember me in your prayers because this is a huge paradigm shift in my life.
Just found your web/blog. THANK YOU so much.We’re attending a church that is getting heavier and heavier on the subject of tithing-for-blessing-in-obedience as they expand the building. Otherwise, we love the church and our relationships there, but are deeply grieved at this encroaching legalism. Your site is a welcome relief and wealth of strength. Thanks & God bless you!
Finally, I wanted to tell you a small testimony since I found your site. A lady that works with me, in her 50’s and single, has become a friend to my wife and I over the last 11 years. Her father has been sick for the last several months and she called us on this past Saturday to say that he past away the night before. I immediately felt The Lord tell me two things: 1. Give her $100 and 2. Compel others to do the same. Yesterday I did so and in addition to my $100 raised a total of $555 before lunch. I didn’t ask anyone prior to Monday afternoon and the majority I asked just before lunch and the outpouring was pretty amazing considering that it is a relatively small company that I work for. She was obviously touched and she called my wife last night and my wife (a prayer warrior, for real) got to encourage and pray for her in he time of loss.
I am still processing what The Lord is speaking to me through this, but I feel a real excitement to give. I want to still give to my church and I can see at times giving in excess of 10%. There is something about seeing Gods love in action firsthand, being obedient and watching him multiply what he told me to give 5 times, etc. Things that I would have had a hard time affording before because I “gave at the office”.- Jude
I do financial planning and business planning – Church giving is more an oppression and cause for torment than God ever intended (usually the things that torment are things that “man” obligates too and tries to control).
God told us to be fruitful and multiple and have dominion over the earth ( Gold, oil etc are in the earth)– HE never told us to Have dominion over each other. Church Giving is in many cases Control over another and has lead to oppression and a true lack of God’s Love expressed by many.
So thank you for your site — Truth is a wonderful thing.
Hey Jared – love your website and the resources. I’m certain that this whole tithing doctrine will be shaken and ultimately seen for what it is – bondage.
It never ceases to amaze me how easily we the church revert to legalism. And almost unbelievably it was the same in the early church – a huge part of Paul’s teaching was to counter this tendency to resort to the law and human effort. “O foolish Galatians..!” I love his teaching in 2 Cor on the grace of giving.
Anyway, I wanted to thank you for speaking the truth in such a beautiful and balanced way – your efforts will not go unrewarded.
– John Hansen