Find answers to many common questions about tithing. We are in the process of improving our library of content, so you will find the most popular questions and more thorough answers elsewhere in our tithing questions section on the website. Regarding these questions below, we have given short answers for now, but we will move them to that section once we have finalized a more thorough answer.
Are those who tithe more financially stable than those who do not?
Is there a punishment or curse for not tithing?
Larry Burkett, who has now since passed, was a famous financial Christian author. He once said that tithing in the New Testament was voluntary and there is no punishment for not tithing. Larry was trying to soften the blow of tithing under New Testament grace, but In this context Larry is wrong. Israel did have a punishment for not tithing, but the Church today does not have a punishment. Malachi 3:9 is pretty clear about Israel’s punishment since it says that “You are cursed with a curse.”
The ironic twist is that you now have a curse upon you if you do tithe. “For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse”.
Did Paul pay tithes?
The bible does not say whether Paul tithed. Since Paul was very religious prior to his conversion to Christianity, it’s safe to assume he would have tithed if he grew crops or raised animals within the land of Israel.
Paul still circumcised his disciples according to the law, and celebrated the old testament feasts, so it wouldn’t surprise me if he gave a tithe, although this is pure speculation. (Galatians 2:3-5; Acts 18:21)
Does Luke 18:12 show that the Pharisee tithed on “all he possessed” not just agricultural increase?
Did the early Church not talk about tithing because everyone already knew it was required?
Is Tithing one of the first examples of giving found in the Bible?
Cain and Able gave a first fruit offering before Abraham ever gave a tenth to Melchizedek. (Genesis 4:4)
God’s example of giving had certainly given Adam more than a tithe.(Genesis 1:29,30)
Sacrificing animals also predated the tithe and the Mosaic law, but we do not continue animal sacrifices.
Clean and unclean animals were distinguished before the Mosaic law, but the clean/unclean laws do not apply to the Church. The Bible specifies that Noah sacrificed the clean animals, which apparently only came from the abolished Mosaic law hundreds of years later; (Genesis 12:7, Genesis 22:2; Genesis 8:20)
Did tithing start in the Garden of Eden?
Is Tithing a repetitive”pattern” we find throughout the Bible?
God himself set so many standards in the Old Testament, so unless you follow every one of the standards that God set up, then the tithing standard should stay in the Old Testament
God only needs to say something once for us to follow it, so patterns do not bring any extra validity to what God says.
Sacrifices are also mentioned all throughout scriptures but that doesn’t validate it as a practice.
The Old Testament contained 43 out of 66 books in the whole bible, so of course we see this pattern over and over.
Out of all the tithing examples in scripture, there’s not a single pattern that’s consistent with all of them.
– Some, such as farmers & herdsmen tithed off their increase, while others such as doctors and carpenters did not tithe from their occupational increase. (Leviticus 27)
– There were times when giving from increase was under a tenth (Num. 31:9, 27-29), and sometimes it was a tenth (Genesis 14:20, Hebrews 7:4)
– Israel’s tithe was only allowed from animals or agriculture (Leviticus 27), while Abraham’s tithe was allowed from the spoils of war. (Hebrews 7:4)
– At one point tithing was voluntary (Genesis 28:22), but at another point it is mandatory (Leviticus 27).
– What Pattern? What Standard? Repetative? There’s no repetative pattern, and there’s no consistent standard.
Since you don’t believe in tithing, how much have you given?
It’s hypocritical to hold dear to the law of tithing but allow myself an opportunity to boast in my giving. (Matthew 6:3)
The Mormon cult gives more money than any denomination or religion, but that doesn’t prove their righteousness.
Greed is not biased to those who practice grace giving. May I remind you that Israel fell to the cloak of greed while under the tithing law anyway’s.
The steward in Matthew 25 who gave 100% of his 2 talents back to his master was still considered a bad steward.
It was only the Pharisees who were interested in shortcomings of others while expressing how they elegantly obeyed the OT requirements.
Is it common for you to find your scriptural truth based on the performance of mankind?
Did Israel tithe money in the Bible?
In the book of Job (the oldest book in the bible) Job’s friends gave him pieces of silver. (Job 42:11)
Abraham bought a field with 400 shekels of silver (Genesis 23:15)
Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold (Genesis 13:2)
Joseph put money into the sacks of grain that his brothers took back to their home (Genesis 44:8)
The Israelites were ordered to take gold and silver from the Egyptians (Exodus 25:3)
David spoke of gold and silver coins (Psalm 119:72)
Jacob purchased land with silver (Gen. 33:19)
Joseph was sold into slavery for twenty shekels of silver (Gen. 37:28)
Judas was paid off with silver coins to betray Jesus (Matt. 26:14-15)
The chief priests paid soldiers money to lie about Christ’s body (Matt. 28:12-13)
Other passages indicate that actual coin money was used to pay taxes, even by Jesus himself (Matt. 17:24-27)
Money was to be used in redemption of people and animals (Numbers 3:46-50)
These passages mention “wages” (Genesis 29:15, 30:28, 31:7-8, 31:41; Exodus 2:9; Leviticus 19:13; Jeremiah 22:13; Ezekiel 29:18-19; Haggai 1:6; Malachi 3:5)
Is Spirit-led giving an excuse for not giving?
No, you should obey the commands and examples of New Testament giving.
1 Corinthians 9:14
1 Corinthians 16:1-2 compared with Deuteronomy 16:10
2 Corinthians 8:13-15
2 Corinthians 9:6-13
Matthew 17:25-26 compared with Galatians 4:7
Spirit-led giving is more challenging and sacrificial than any other type of giving found in the bible.
Should we tithe because people struggle to give freely?
Israel didn’t listen to the law either, so what makes you think the Church has a better chance to listen to it instead of the Holy Spirit?
If we encourage people to walk in the Spirit, can’t the Holy Spirit teach us to give properly? (Romans 8:1-17; Galatians 5:13-26)
Last time I checked statistics, only 8% of the church population were obeying and listening to the tithe law anyway.
Being guided by the Spirit doesn’t mean roll the dice. It means finding answers for our next step by having constant communication with God.
Does God bless us when we tithe?
Does every New Testament example go beyond the tithe?
Did God raise the bar for giving?
Does tithing protect us from greed?
Did God rescind the legalism that obligated the tithe?
Specific times, specific places, and specific possessions were all obligations of tithing. If Israel did not meet all these requirements, then there was NO blessing. So, why would God change his mind for you? I know you do not meet these requirements in tithing, therefore, you are not receiving blessings from obeying it. Instead you are being blessed by your generosity and faith.
The curse for not tithing was declared in the Mosaic law, so how can free people under grace be subject to Moses’ ramifications?
Does proportionate giving in 1 Corinthians 16 mean we should tithe?
Paul did not say set something aside as he feels led. He said to“save to the extent that we prosper”, how would that make any sense if there was not a proportional giving system in place? – 1 Corinthians 16:2
I find it interesting that he says set SOMETHING aside, and doesn’t define that something as 10%.
Paul’s statement gives room for us to pursue the answers from the Holy Spirit in regards to the extent of our giving.
Did tithing predate the Mosaic law?
It predated Moses, but it did not predate the law.Gal 4:4-5
But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.”to redeem them that were under the law” – was this only referring to people starting from Moses, or did Adam need redemption from the law as well? Of course Adam needed redemption from the law just as much as Moses needed redemption from the law, just as much as Abraham needed redemption from the law. Remember the law itself was not new when God gave it to Israel and Moses. God’s plan for redemption from the law started in Genesis 3, not with Moses.
Other verses that support thisGalatians 3:19
What purpose then does the law serve? It was added because of transgressions, till the Seed should come to whom the promise was made;
That promise was made in Genesis 3. Transgressions and the law began in Genesis 3
Tithing was still under the Old Covenant (Hebrews 8:13)
Does tithing teach the fear of the Lord?
Now this is the commandment, and these are the statutes and judgments which the Lord your God has commanded to teach you, that you may observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, that you may fear the Lord your God
ALL the old testament commandments taught the fear of the Lord. If you want to prove tithing with the fear of the Lord, then apply your statement to obey all the laws in the Old Covenant. I doubt you will obey all the Old Testament commands just because of that will you? (unless of course you think we only listen to “some” of what God said we should do and not others)Deuteronomy 14:22-23 states, “Thou shalt truly tithe all the increase of thy seed, that the field bringeth forth year by year. And thou shalt eat before the LORD thy God, in the place which he shall choose to place his name there, the tithe of thy corn, of thy wine, and of thine oil, and the firstlings of thy herds and of thy flocks; that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always. “
Most people misinterpret this passage. It is not solely tithing that teaches the fear of the Lord. If you read carefully, it is the festival and the celebration that teaches the fear of the Lord.
Should we give God the first and best?
Must tithing be re-taught in the New Testament in order to validate it for us?
I agree that every “law” does not have to be re-numerated in the NT in order to validate it, but how would you excuse changing the law of tithing without any New Covenant to do so either?
First, let’s find out why some of the laws of tithing have rolled over into the NT and why some have not.
– Food was only to be given as a tithe(Leviticus 27:30)
– The tithe was given to the Levitical tribe because they did not have a land inheritance (Numbers 18:21)
– The tithe was NOT part of first fruits.(Leviticus 27:33, compare with Numbers 18:12-13)
– The tithe was only given certain times of the year(Deut. 14:28, Deut 26:12, Nehemiah 13:31)
– At least 1/3 of the tithe was used on themselves for a feast (Deut. 14:22-27)
– The tithes were not used to maintain or build any religious structures
2 Corinthians 9 speak to the spirit of tithing?
Did early Jewish Christians give tithes?
Does tithing encourage systematic giving rather than emotional or sporadic giving?
Why didn’t Jesus or the New Testament revoke tithing?
Sometimes I wish God just said a lot of things straight up. Don’t forget, that the God’s word didn’t stop after the John, the last book of the Gospels. If Jesus needed to say all that he needed before he died, why did he give us the rest of the NT?
Circumcision, clean animals, sacrifices, and the sabbath were all instituted by God prior to the Mosaic law. The tithe was neither instituted, nor instructed, nor even asked by God until the Mosaic law. God’s first command, asking, instruction, encouragement (anyway you want to see it) to tithe was not made until Leviticus 27:30. In comparison take note of the verses below, which show direct actions or quotes of God instituting clean animals, sacrifices, sabbath and circumcision before the Mosaic Law. There are direct commands by God in the Bible instituting the tithe prior to Moses.
- Clean animals (Genesis 7:2-8
- Sacrifices (Genesis 35:1, Genesis 22:2-13)
- Sabbath (Genesis 2:3)
- Circumcision (Genesis 17:10-14)
The New Testament does not directly tell us to stop tithing. The Bible does not explicitly tell us to stop circumcising either, but it did directly say it was not required. The New Testament does not re-list all of the hundreds of Old Testament laws and covenants that we do not have to follow. Tithing was limited to the Israelites from within the land of Israel, so it’s significant to note that the Gentiles never received instructions to start tithing. Please note that the NT does not teach us to stop all of the other types of offerings Israel gave either.
Here are other commands from the Old Testament that the NT does not say anything about
- Deuteronomy 23:2
- Deuteronomy 25:5-10
- Deuteronomy 25:11-12
- Exodus 21:20-21
- Leviticus 15:19
- Leviticus 19:19
- Leviticus 19:23-24
- Leviticus 21:1
- Leviticus 21:5
- Leviticus 21:16-23
- Numbers 8:24
Is the tithe holy to the Lord?
2 Corinthians 3:10
For even what was made glorious had no glory in this respect, because of the glory that excels.
Here are other holy items in the bible
– 1st and 7th day of Passover Exodus 12:16
– Sabbath Exodus 16:23
– Areas of the tabernacle Exodus 26:33
– Garments for Aaron and sons Exodus 28:2
– Sacrificed ram and shewbread Exodus 29:33
– The altar (and anything that touches it) Exodus 29:37
– Anointing oil and anything anointed with it Exodus 30:25
– Incense Exodus 30:35,36
How can the church be supported without tithing?
You rely too much on your humanity. What makes you think that God is restricted to the law of tithing to support his church and ministry? Did he not give us his Spirit and its gifts to help us with giving? (Matthew 10:8-10)
Look at how Israel supported local ministry in the Old Testament before they started the tithe (Exodus 35)
Look at how Jesus’ ministry was supported on earth (Luke 8:1-3)
Look at how Jesus sent his disciples (Matthew 10:8-10)
It is surviving just fine. Statistics say that only 8% of people claiming to be born again claim to tithe anyways.
The levitical system survived 40 years in the wilderness without the tithing command.
The early Church exploded without a sign of a tithe collected or commanded.
Is tithing the only time God tells us to test Him?
Do Spirit-led givers give less than tithers?
Are tithes used within the local Church while offerings used without?
Are you aware of how Israel gave at the times when they were not under the tithing law? (Exodus 35)
Are you aware how Jesus ministry on earth was supported? (Luke 8:1-3)
Does scripture show that Spirit-led giving was prohibited from giving locally?
Maybe the reason why you don’t see local spirit-led giving in the new testament is because they weren’t so focused on their own needs. Kind of makes sense: spirit-led / self-less giving.
I never read the part where God established foreign and local divisions of his Body.
Actually, the ONLY examples of giving in the New Covenant are Spirit led, so I can’t see where you find examples of tithing at all, let alone to a local Church.