Test Me in This Says the Lord

lie detector testAfter 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?

Jared Bartholomew is the author of www.tithing.com. There are over 300 articles written on research and reviews about tithing information.

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7 comments on “Test Me in This Says the Lord
  1. N Munatsi says:

    Those misconceptions are the ones by which people are being overburdened,against which the apostles resolved in Acts 15:1-20.

    Thank you .I agree with you 100%.

    May God Bless you.

  2. A Curious Soul says:

    To challenge misconception #1, you are focusing on the statement “Try Me…” am I right?

    The passage does say “Try Me…” but that isn’t all. The complete statement is “Try me now in this.” The preposition “…In this” must have been pertaining to what the previous phrase stated “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse that there may be food in my house” which is presumably about man’s act in tithing. So this, still presumably, must mean that God is putting both himself and man’s act of tithing in scrutiny, and thus reassuring man that tithing will lead to God’s blessing.

    This, sir, is only a challenge, not a disagreement. I am speaking presumably based on what is written in the said passage, making my opinions imperfect. Hence, my opinions are open for correction, but with satisfying implications and explanations of course. Why? because I am a curious soul.

     

  3. Tim says:

    what happens when u can’t keep tithing anymore due to life’s cost and a growing family, but you were faithful in tithing and giving, but don’t can’t go on anymore because you find it is an unsustainable practise due to the demands But there seems to be no increase or income to ensure your giving is sustained???

    • Ave says:

      That’s where Faith in God comes in my friend. My wife and I found ourselves in that same situation. And at one point in time found it difficult to give, due to the same circumstances of life. But if you remain faithful in giving, he promises that he will never leave nor forsake, and that he is our great provider. You are not alone, and let me just encourage you my family, extended family are living testimonies that if you keep giving he will provide, no matter how dire your financial situation is.

    • Craig says:

      regardless of what you or I think the scripture means God does bless us for tithing, it is a fact that when you give to Him he gives back in increase , I have experienced this both in personal finance and business , the best time to give is when you don’t have it to give because your giving more regardless the amount . tithing is key to success , when times get hard for me I know I’m not giving enough. we can’t out give God , if your still struggling and have been tithing it may be because your doubting , faith is what its all about you must believe when you give that He will provide for you , if your giving and then questioning whether you should or have regret your robbing yourself of his blessings.
      give till it hurts and trust Him with all and you will prevail.

      • Craig,
        You think God blesses you on tithing because you are human. You only experience the physical: what you can see and what you can touch. if your statement was true then God should bless a tither who only tithes to get rich; or God should bless a reluctant, non-cheerful tither just because he cut a check, or that God should bless a billionaire because he gave his chump change each year.

        God blesses people on the amount of faith, not on a percentage of physical currency that comes out of a wallet. Even though i am against the enforcement of tithing, this is why i’ve stated multiple times that God can bless a tither and a non-tither because he judges by a spiritual scale, not a physical one.

        Yes. i believe God dishonors the enforcement of tithing; but because of His grace, He can overlook this distracting behavior, and judge us with perfect justice. Even though a tither is practicing the wrong doctrine, it’s great that God can still bless a faithful giver. God can see past our facade and peer into the part that truly matters.

    • Colin says:

      Faith is spelt RISK. Gods challenge is to test him on this, and he looks at our heart.

      As a 19 year old, the church I was attending did have a sermon on tithing. I wasn’t earning a great deal and Mum took a fair chunk for board and keep, and there were all the excuses but something touched my heart and I decided to tithe 5% of my income.
      I did not expect anything in return only to honour him. The very next week, my firm gave me an unexpected pay rise, not only a pay rise but a double increment. I jumped up 2 pay steps!

      I am an old man now (64) but I know God is faithful. A few years ago, my wife and I sacrificed to take time to go on a mission trip to help build a school hall in the Solomon islands, we poured more time and money into the project that we cared to telly up. Taking time off work etc, yet at the end of that year instead of suffering loss, it was like the windows of heaven had been opened and our business had an outstandingly profitable year. It was hard to pinpoint it, costs were down, work turn over was up and God came through on his promise in Malachi.

      At Church last Sunday, a university student related how he had $18 in his pocket and a $180 bill to pay the next week. He had it on his heart to tithe the $18 which he struggled a bit with but did. The next Monday his mum who lives out of town popped down to see him with soap and food etc. and also an envelope that he initially did not think much of and set on one side until his mum insisted that he open it. Inside was $200, enough to not only cover his $180 debt but to reimburse him is $18 plus $2 profit! His mum told him that a lady had turned up on her door step the Saturday before the Sunday meeting where he tithed his $18 and told his mum that God had told her to give him that amount as he needed it!!!

      Then there was the guy in about the 17th or 18th century in England who set up orphanages purely on faith without any money. One day he had about 150 hungry kids and no food. He got them to all sit down and said grace thanking God for the food. Just then there was a knock on the door and it was the local baker with a waggon load of bread!

      More recently Heidi Baker in Africa was running an orphanage and was told by the local army to leave promptly as it was not safe for Europeans as the rebels were in the area and likely to single them out. They had to flee on foot leaving the African children and walk about 40 miles to a friends house.
      When they got there all the friend had was a pot of stew and 6 plastic plates. They were about to eat when they noticed that the children had followed then and about 100 orphans were standing outside.

      Heidi baker directed her friend to please feed the children first and she did, all 100 odd of them out of one small pot of stew, and the adults as well. When they had finished the stew was all gone but 106 plastic plates remained!!

      Our God is a BIG GOD far more capable of anything we can possibly dream or imagine.

      I am an Civil Engineer living in New Zealand, I volunteered to assist Civil Defence following the Christchurch earthquakes and stayed on to help rebuild the city. I was up and down between home and Christchurch and got a bit sick of it after a while. On going up one time we stayed in a hotel near the air port and I broke the good news to my wife that I thought we should move permanently to Christchurch or “Shake Central” with earthquakes still going on. It was not every wife’s dream. She was very good and did not kill me!, but said “lets pray about it” and we did. We told God that we wanted clear direction whether he wanted us to go to Christchurch, stay in our home town or go anywhere else in the world. No mucking about God, we wanted clear direction! I got up, paced around the Hotel room and picked up the Gideon Bible that was sitting in a corner, flicked to open at random and stabbed at it with my finger, hitting the verse Daniel 9:18. Daniel was crying out to the Lord; “Lord consider the destitution of your people (The people of Christchurch were destitute) but the second part of the verse still gives me goose bumps, “and the city of your name!”.

      We were obedient and left for Christchurch leaving behind our home, church, grand children, business and friends, with no home to go to and to a city still shaking! But we were faithful and have been richly blessed!

      I prayed one day for a house; 1. As nice as we had up north for my wife’s sake. 2. Handy to the centre of town where my work was, 3. Four bedrooms for friends family and hospitality 4. a decent sized family room as an office as the town centre was wrecked. 5. Three but preferably 6 car garaging as I’m into my vintage cars, and last but not least,6. super cheep!

      No sooner had I prayed that a little voice spoke in my head and told me to “look for a section where the house was written off”. I did and we ended up with a lovely home that ticked all the boxes including the three garages (he didn’t spring to 6, probably thought I was a bit greedy!) I bought it for land value plus the cost of chattels and was able to fix it, all complete for under half price! The lady got full pay-out on the house from the insurers but needed to sell the land to build elsewhere, The insurers were thrilled as they did not have to pay to bulldoze it. and I was wrapped as I had a fantastic house, which I fixed and is now approved by council at less than half its value.

      Not only that, the seller was so happy to sell the land to me when no one else was buying she told the whole street and we ended up buying two more same deal which I fixed being an engineer and now rent out making an income and assisting with the housing shortage in Christchurch “helping the destitute and to rebuild the city of his name!”

      We are about to buy our other neigbour’s home, similar deal bringing to 5 quality Christchurch homes that we and the Bank will own.

      Never in our wildest dreams did I ever imagine we would own 5 such lovely homes. In fact when we got engaged, I told my wife that I did not think I would ever be able to buy her a home. Her response was; “That is alright, I would be happy with you in a tent!” I am one lucky super blessed guy.

      I have a God who loves me and keeps his promises, far beyond what you can possibly imagine.

      Test him in this. Step out in Faith spelt RISK to honour him and do his will, diligently seeking him. Obedience is greater than sacrifice.

      God knows the plans he has for you, plans for good and not for harm.

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