Test Me in This Says the Lord
After a phone conversation with a commenter on this blog, i have realized that think it’s time to dissect Malachi 3:10.
Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the LORD of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.
Misconception #1: Malachi 3:10 Is the Tithing Test
If you read Malachi 3:10 correctly, there is no tithe challenge. Tithing had already been commanded and God was not trying to encourage or challenge the Israelites to do what He already expected them to do. He was not trying to pander to their ego either by making this some sort of thrilling dare. If you understand the passage correctly it reads – “Test Me, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven”. Because God stated, “Test Me“, He was placing himself under scrutiny, not tithing. But, once again, our humanism has defaulted to making our good works as the focus in this passage instead of God’s works.
Misconception #2: God was Allowing Israel to Tempt Himself
Of course most of our minds flash back to Matthew 4:7 when Jesus said, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the LORD your God.'” Malachi 3:10 was not a once-in-a-lifetime, free pass to tempt God. Most of us are deceived into believing that tithing is the only time in the bible God is allowing us to tempt him. The truth is, God’s promises are put to the test every day. Relying on any of God’s promises is a test, not a temptation.
Misconception #3: The Church is the Storehouse
Most of us should understand why this is a misconception. Nontheless, i will try to make it easy for you to understand. If a storehouse stores something, what exactly is the Church storing? Maybe. . . just maybe . . . the church isn’t a storehouse. Maybe . . . just maybe . . . Jesus tried to answer this question in Matthew 6:20 when he said, “Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven“. Another question you could ask yourself is where does your church store it’s offerings? I would venture to say that it’s where most people store their money – in a bank. There is no correlation between a storehouse and the Church anywhere in scripture.
Misconception #4: Having Food in God’s House Means Having the Word of God
Yes, there are many verses that describe God’s word as water, honey, meat, and bread; but in this instance God literally wanted ‘food’ in the storehouse. The storehouse was not a place where God’s Word was read. It was a silo not a place of worship. There needed to be real food in the temple storehouse because of the physical needs of the priests and the poor. Since it was the priests and the poor who actually ate the meat in God’s house, is it fair to say that pastors and the poor are the only ones who get to hear the word of God today?