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Indeed, II Cor 9:7 is our new covenant guide. Many utilize Abraham's "pre-law" tithe to Melchizedek in Hebrews 7:1, to justify the legal necessity of New Testament tithing, but to do so is folly. Scripture must be taken in context, to be properly interpreted. The crux of this chapter is that Levi was justified in receiving tithes, because he was "in the loins of his father when Melchizedek met him (vs. 10)." Paul goes on to say "when the priesthood is changed, of necessity, there takes place a change of law also. (vs 12) ... for, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness (for the law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God. (vs. 18)... so much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant." In other words, Hebrews 7:1 could not possibly justify New Testament tithing, as the entire chapter presents the justification for the new covenant under Christ, and shows the Hebrews a better way.
I believe a pastor is the shepherd of his church...and like any good shepherd does, he should lead/guide his sheep in the right direction...however, I don't believe a church is to enforce tithing or that it is the job of the church or pastor to guilt anyone into it...if we are tithing b/c we are "suppose" to, it's done in vain and is worthless.
We have always been told to give as we prosper. Here's the verse we use... 2 Cor. 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. I feel it's between God and the giver.
Notice that the Catholic Church survives quite nicely without enforcing talking or enforcing Tithing. The congregation only needs to be reminded of the good works of the church and the upkeep needs of the Pastor. Thereafter, giving will then be conscience driven, personal, and a guilt free offering to God.
2 Cor9:7 Clearly says give cheerful I don't believe God want us giving if we are going to complain about it. I believe in asking God what he wants us to give, because man is good at talking people in to things they don't want to do.
Every injunction of scripture is, of necessity, anchored on persuasion, not compulsion. Pastors, as human shepherds of Christ's flocks, are required to gently and patiently nurture their sheep and bring them to the point where each can understand that paying tithe and making offering to God would not render him poor. Consider even a matter as serious as salvation: It is persuasion that brings people to the point where they voluntarily turn the control of their life to Jesus, and by faith, consciously live righteously before God and man. The kind of service that draws rewards both here and hereafter is that given, not in compulsion, but intentionally voluntarily. No matter what doctrine(s) we make out of the issue of tithes and offering, the bottom line remains that God loves a cheerful giver!
In Galatians 1: 6-8, Paul utilized past teachings as an acid test, for believers-at-large to cling to as foundational. This means that whether tithing should be taught by a pastor, or any other Christian for that matter, can be determined by looking back at what was taught in the beginning. Apostolic writings provide no support for the idea of New Testament tything, while a careful review of Clement, a contemporary of the apostles, and other early Church fathers, such as Tertullian and Justin Martyr, allows us to glimpse inside those early years. For example, Justin Martyr (100-165 AD) described giving in the early Church in this manner: "And the wealthy among us help the needy... when our prayer is ended, bread and wine and water are brought, and the president in like manner offers prayers and thanksgiving, according to his ability, and the people assent, saying Amen; and there is a distribution to each, and a participation of that over which thanks have been given, and to those who are absent a portion is sent by the deacons. And they who are well to do, and willing, give what each thinks fit; and what is collected is deposited with the president, who succors the orphans and widows and those who, through sickness or any other cause, are in want, and those who are in bonds and the strangers sojourning among us." Tertullian's (150-220 AD) words echoed this, when he wrote: "Every man brings some modest coin once a month or whenever he wishes, and only if he is willing and able; it is a freewill offering. You might call them the trust-funds of piety; they are spent... on the support and burial of the poor." In fact, the teaching of tithing did not gain any headway in the early Church until the seventh century, when two synods of bishops, hard-pressed to maintain their cathedrals, suggested this was the right thing to do. The 1912 Catholic Encyclopedia is in complete harmony with other encyclopedias and histories as it states: "In the beginning [provision] was supplied by the spontaneous support of the faithful. In the course of time, however, as the Church expanded and various institutions arose, it became necessary to make laws which would insure the proper and permanent support of the clergy. The payment of tithes was adopted from the Old Law, and early writers speak of it as a divine ordinance and an obligation of the conscience. The earliest positive legislation on the subject seems to be contained in the letter of the bishops assembled at Tours in 567 and the Canons of the Council of Macon in 585." Under the reign of Charlemagne, any semblance of voluntary, Holy Spirit-led giving, completely disappeared, when tithing was then made law throughout the II Holy Roman Empire, and its yoke came squarely to rest on the shoulders of the poor -- the ones to whom church giving was primarily intended. Thus, we see the end of errant, legalistic teachings, no matter how well intended, can never accomplish God's purpose.
I want people to look at things this way, the Bible is the word of God, Jesus Christ is the son of God, and God has commanded the ordination of a Pastor. The Pastor is to feed God's flock (take care of the sheep) both physically and spiritually. Christ also commanded Peter to do the same. Now, the man Pastor is qualified to use any part of the Bible (either old or new testament) to care for the flocks, an example is when he prays with the word of God (the Bible) people will say amen and rejoice when there are results-(miracle). Now when it comes to offering or tithing (two different doctrines because tithe is not the same as offering), this same Pastor is also qualify to use a Bible passage either from the old or new testament to support this command of God! When those who are not tithing run into problems of non-tithing, (of course which the Pastor will knows) they run back to God and Pastor for prayers and deliverance. (WHY ARE THE PEOPLE GRUMBLING?) The man of God is qualify to collect and use judiciously tithe and offering. He is also to guide by the help of the Holy Spirit the Church of God. He knows the problems of the Church, the flocks, and the community where these blessing could be utilized more than those who are grumbling in the Church. If the Pastor also eats the tithe and offering, he is qualify to do so, because no one can judge him except God who called him. My advise for people is to worship in God in Spirit as their primary assignment and live the issue of tithe and offering for God and Pastor. Tithe is for the provision of food (Spiritually and physically) into the house of God, and the one who only qualifies to dispense it is the ordained Pastor. God has not said Pastor must not eat out of the offering or tithe! God blesses his people who obeys His words both in the old and New Testament especially those who are paying their tithe and offering regularly for the work of God to progress...AMEN. I decided not to add bible passages so any lay person could understand. (This piece may be of help). Thank you.
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