Does our tithe all have to go to our church or can part of it go to a Christian ministry?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Mini Shanna Duck "Let a search be made in the royal archives..." Ezra 5:17 NIV
Brother Houdmann, as usual, has an incredible answer to this question. We also do not believe that a Christian is bound by tithes. Here are a few other things to consider as well: 

1. The early church was a very different entity; it had very little “overhead” as such. The money they received went for providing basic necessities for pastors and evangelists, and for supporting indigent widows and suffering Christians in other areas. Now, a Christian has to use a lot of discernment. 

It is a sad fact, but some “para-church” ministries are exercising better stewardship in teaching, evangelism, and charity in the name of Jesus than many churches, where the focus may be on providing luxury and entertainment in an attempt to attract the world. In some churches, giving money is like giving money to the government, you may not be sure exactly WHERE it’s going and sometimes where it’s going may be questionable. I have been honest shocked lately at some of the things going on in some “youth groups.” 

We are commanded to support our ministers and help fellow-Christians in need; we’re not commanded to help our church build a $10M building, put on a Broadway-style musical every week, or fund a youth group where kids lick each other. (You can mark your checks to restrict your gifts to certain funds/programs if you feel that’s appropriate.) Of course, while one certainly shouldn’t leave a church lightly or because of a single disagreement over funding, if the overall theme and purpose of the church you are attending is NOT in accordance with sound Biblical doctrine and evangelism, you may have to rethink your membership. 

Just like with the individual Christian, a church’s TRUE faith & purpose is revealed by looking at “the books.” Where’s the money going? What’s shown in black (or red) on those pages is a powerful witness to what the church REALLY considers important. 

2. We know with certainty that early Christians gave to the poor THROUGH the Apostles & deacons. There were no “para-church organizations” as such. Yet, we DO know that early believers such as Dorcas sometimes gave directly to the poor. 

I think James 2 also supports this idea: 15 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

Yes, if you know of a need you can bring it to the church’s attention if appropriate, but nothing absolves you personally of the responsibility of wisely and judiciously helping those who God puts in your path. 

I'm a woman, and cannot teach authoritatively. BUT a lot of this comes from my husband, a non-profit CPA. Trust me, a church may fool itself, but its CPA, book-keeper, and financial committee know the truth if a church is really about serving the crucified Son of God or simply being a baptized country club.

September 14 2014 3 responses Vote Up Share Report

Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
This is a difficult issue to discern biblically because the Bible does not mention "special offerings" for Christian causes or parachurch Christian ministries. The Bible simply tells us to give to ...

July 01 2013 1 response Vote Up Share Report

Image41 Ezekiel Kimosop
Before answering this question, let me present my view on tithes which is different from Michael Houdmann's. 

Tithing is a timeless biblical principle that preceded the giving of the law and cannot therefore be rejected or considered an Old Testament legal rule so that the church can simply discard it. Of course one will still go to heaven even if they do not tithe but they will miss the blessings on earth. 

Abraham gave the tithe (Genesis 14) and so did Jacob his grandson (Genesis 28:22).

Later the Levitical law entrenched this practice as a requirement for the Jews. Malachi makes it clear that the tithe is the source of blessing and that the people of his day lived under a curse for disobeying God in giving the tithes (Malachi 3)

In the New Testament, Jesus did not abolish the tithe but in fact commended it. What he condemned was the practice of the Pharisees in extending the requirement of this law to irrelevancy (Matthew 23:23). 

The writer of Hebrews connects Jesus with Melchizedek whose priesthood was considered as a foreshadow of Christ's High Priesthood. The mention of Melchizedek receiving a tithe from Abraham is instructive (Hebrews 7).

The most quoted scripture for opponents of the tithe is 2 Corinthians 9, but this passage addressed the collections for the Judean church and did not expressly obviate the requirement for tithing. 

Nowhere in scripture do we find any express biblical command or teaching that waters down the tithe to insignificance as has been argued by some. The whole issue, in my view, may have to do with the convenience of the opponents who do not wish to be "burdened" with the giving. Tithing is an act of worship and brings joy to those who yield to its practice.

The modern attitude of convenience is perhaps the reason so many biblical principles are ignored by the modern church and could explain why the church is financially weak and has to resort to the "world" for financial support. 

To answer the question in view, I believe that the tithe belongs to the priesthood ministry to which the believer belongs and that is basically the local church. Those who desire the blessings of God in this area of giving should try Him through obedient giving of the tithe.

Many believers who tithe faithfully have testimonies of God's faithfulness and abundant blessings.

September 15 2014 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Anupama Rajesh
Tithes must be given to the church..... it should not be broken.... if any person has extra, then he can give to the charity. God Loves cheerful giver, one should not even think of giving little here or little there. It is clear commandment from the beginning, it must be given to the LORD's house

March 31 2015 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini Eduardo Po
Giving your tithe to the church is what you really truly feel on your heart, not with condition to it. The tithe we give comes from our heart and we believe the promises of our Almighty God in our life is the most important. Wherever our tithes end up it is up to the responsible people. If our tithe ends up in good or bad hands, our Lord will always know their heart and surely they will have their own rewards too. Let us tithe true to our heart without any condition attached to it. Let the Almighty God judge to all of it. Amen

February 28 2019 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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