Why Do We Give?
Giving is a privilege. The storehouse spoken of in Malachi is what we consider the local church. By partnering our monies together, God’s work is done more effectively. Even Paul recognized this in the newly formed churches of the New Testament. He tells the Corinthians in 2 Corinthians 8:13-15, “For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened: But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality: As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack.”
Why is Giving So Important?
We also recognize that Jesus talked more about giving than the subjects of heaven, hell, or prayer. In Matthew 6:21 and 24 Jesus says, “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also…No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” In Luke 6:38 He says, “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.”
What is the Different Between a Tithe and an Offering?
A tithe is giving the first 10% of your gross income as defined by Malachi 3:10. An offering is given above and beyond the tithe.
What is an Offering?
We believe that we are mere stewards of what God has given us. Therefore, we see tithing as giving back what is God’s to God (and He lets us keep the other 90% to use appropriately). Any amount above 10% is considered an offering to God. This type of giving is over and above and should also be done with cheerfulness.
What is a Tithe?
As Christ’s followers, we believe that we are to follow God’s command regarding tithing. “Tithe” means “tenth” or 10 percent. Leviticus 27:30 says, “And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD’S: it is holy unto the LORD.” In Malachi 3:8-10 God speaks to His people, “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”
What are ‘Alms’ and ‘Almsgiving’?
Alms are money or goods given the needy as in charity. This is the type of giving that is to be done secretly, as in Matthew 6:1,3,4, “Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven…But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.” Almsgiving is an important expression of Christian love, but should be done out of love for the Lord and for the needy, and not for personal gratification.
Can I Excel in Giving?
The apostle Paul spoke to the new churches about giving. In 1 Corinthians 16:1-2, Paul admonishes the Corinthian church, “Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.” He prompted the believers to be generous. 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 says, “But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.” And in 2 Corinthians 8:7 he encourages, “Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also.”