BIBLICAL GIVING BEYOND AND ABOVE THE TITHE: Further Study On Tithe By Grace And Love In The New Testament
Should we give more with love under the grace?
The preachers and teachers of tithes in the New Testament say we should tithe ten percent (10%) of what we earn but going to the time, the very first time the word “tithe” appeared in the Bible before the Law of Moses, the time when Abraham paid tithe, he paid the tithe of what he won from the war booty never from what he earned – Genesis 14:20 KJV “And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he (Abraham) gave him (Melchizedek king of Salem) tithes of all.”
I believe that God will never encourage us the New Testament Christian believers to go into war to fight killing people and pay tithes of booty of war. Abraham never paid tithes of what he earned but what he won in battle from the war booty. Remember that this was not the time of the Law of Moses. The Law of Moses under the Old Testament started in the book of Exodus – not in the book of Genesis.
War booty is defined as enemy military objects (or equipment or property) captured or found on the battlefield. That is, booty of war designates generally armament, equipment, vehicles, or other goods taken from the enemy in time of war. In the case of Abraham, he (Abraham) gave a tithe of the booty of war which is never money. Abraham gave tithe of the spoils of the war – Hebrews 7:4 KJV “Now consider how great this man was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.” The words” the spoils” in this Scripture means “the booty of war”.
I believe it is not in the Spirit of grace of the New Testament to put people under the Law of Moses of the Old Testament – Hebrews 10:29 KJV and Romans 6:14 KJV “…the Spirit of grace… for ye are not under the law, but under grace.”
Let me ask this critical question: is it right to give God condition before you give tithe? Absolutely no! But this is exactly what Jacob did in Genesis 28:19-22 KJV “And he (Jacob) called the name of that place Bethel: but the name of that city was called Luz at the first. And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, So that I come again to my father’s house in peace; then shall the LORD be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.” Look at his conditional statement “If God will be with me…..; you don’t give God condition before you pay your tithe. This is not how to do in therobust relationship with God as a Christian believer in the New Testament.
If you carefully follow this article from the previous one, you discover that the tithe payment by Abraham is completely different from that of Jacob; and that of Jacob is also completely different from the payment of tithe under the Law of Moses in Old Testament because that particular and typical tithe payment of the Law of Moses is compulsory for the children of Israel to pay their tithes – they had no choice but to compulsorily obey the system of tithing of tenth percent (10% )of all their Agricultural produce.
How many types of tithes are there in the Bible?
Three Types of Tithes are found in the Bible
The Old Testament, which is the first half of the Bible written before the birth of Jesus Christ focuses on the Jewish myth, describes three different types of tithes that the Jewish people were expected to pay: (1)Levitical or sacred tithe.(2) Feast tithe and (3) Poor tithe
Did Jesus pay tithe?
Jesus and His disciples never paid tithes neither did they instruct anyone to do so. Paul wrote three quarters of the New Testament and had many opportunities to talk about tithes but he never did! He spoke a lot on giving and as a matter of fact giving is mentioned 176 times in the New Testament- nothing on tithes! The law requiring us to tithe has been nailed to the cross by Jesus Christ – Colossians 2:14 KJV “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross.”
And what Jesus Christ says about it? There is no place in the Bible where the Lord Jesus Christ said we Christians should compulsorily pay tithes but He did not condemn it because during His earthly ministry while speaking as at that time, the Law of Moses was still in place and very active as He had NOT gone to the Cross to die for our sin at Calvary, be buried and resurrected – that is, the New Testament had NOT started in Matthew 23:23 KJV “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.”
Don’t forget that in the Old Testament under the Law of Moses, when you give your tithe, you must also give your trespass (sin) offering in the temple but this is not absolutely applicable to us in the church age today in the New Testament because Jesus Christ is the sacrifice for our sin – the Lord Jesus Christ replaced the sin offering in the New Testament for all the Christian believers. So the system of tithing with the trespass (sin) offering is not applicable now in the church of the New Testament for every true Christian believer.
The Lord Jesus Christ never gave any commandment that we (the New Testament Christian believers) should pay tithe in the New Testament after His death and resurrection when the church began.
What I discovered is that many pastors who preach and teach tithing don’t read, study and think scripturally by revelation knowledge and understanding in line with the word of God through the help of the Holy Spirit (the best teacher) on what the Bible correctly says on tithe payment.
WHAT DID JESUS CHRIST SAY ABOUT GIVING IN THE NEW TESTAMENT?
(The Biblical Giving In The New Testament)
Luke 6:38 KJV “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.” Here the Lord Jesus Christ said we should give in measure. That is, the Lord Jesus Christ allowed you to give in measure you want to give – to decide in measure from your heart what you are willing to give without compulsion. This is because the giving of tithe with the sin offering is compulsory under the Law of Moses in the Old Testament. Giving in measure you want to give from your heart with love and without compulsion is Biblical giving in the New Testament.
The deep interpretation of what the Lord Jesus Christ is saying here is that you can give more than the measure of ten percent (10%) . You can give a measure of twenty percent (20%), thirty percent (30%), etc., as you decide from your heart. Just give in measure and it is this measure that you give the Lord Jesus Christ will cause people to give you back or bless you back in measure you give. That is, the Lord Jesus Christ is saying that if you give more, you also will receive more back in giving in that measure from the people – the more you give, the more you receive back. Here is still in the Old Testament that the Lord Jesus Christ was talking as He had not died on the Cross then.
Now let look at another Scripture about the Biblical Giving by our Lord Jesus Christ in Matthew 6:1-4 KJV “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. Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 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.” Here in this Scripture, the Lord Jesus Christ said when you give, you should not let your left hand know what your right hand has given. When you give, do your giving in secret and do not let men know how much you give. But laying emphasis on ten percent (10%) tithe always in the church is to let men (every person) in the church know that you are giving ten percent (10%) – and this is not what our Lord Jesus Christ teaches as far as Biblical giving is concerned.
The pastor is instructing you in the church of how much to give by laying emphasis on ten percent (10%) tithe payment. Our Lord Jesus in the Scripture is telling you that it is left to you on how much you give to God in secret – your giving is between you and God because the practice of true Christianity is a personal walk and intimate relationship between you and God as the issue of salvation is personal.
Let us look at another Scripture about what the Lord Jesus Christ says with respect to the true Biblical giving in Luke 21:1-4 KJV “And he (Jesus Christ) looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.” Read and study this Scripture carefully again with the help of the Holy Spirit, the best teacher.
From this Scripture quoted above, look at what the word of God says about this poor woman (a widow) giving to God in the time of the earthly ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ. Remember once again that during this period, the Law of Moses under the Old Testament was still very active and in place, so it is possible that the rich men were giving in cash (money) in thirty percent (30%) tithe payment as they had redeemed tithing with cash (money) plus (+) sin (trespass) offering of twenty percent (20%) on top of the tithe to make a total sum of fifty percent ( 50%) all together in their giving in the temple while Jesus Christ was watching keenly their individual giving. But in this narrative, the Lord Jesus Christ said this poor woman (widow) gave hundred percent (100%); Wahoo! She, poor as she is, has given everything she has – she is very poor and gave everything she had – she out of her extreme and abject poverty put in all she had to live on while all the rich men (persons) gave their money out of their wealth – they have given a tiny part of their surplus – every rich man (person) gave what they didn’t need out of the excess, that is, all the rich people contributed out of their abundance!
If you read and study this Scripture carefully with the help of the Holy Spirit, you would discover that the Lord Jesus Christ did not stop this widow that NO! NO!! She only needed to pay ten percent (10%) but allowed her to decide on her own from her heart to give the hundred percent (100%) of everything she had as a result of her unconditional love for God as you should give as you love God. Love is giving. This is the exact kind of Biblical giving in the New Testament – you give in measure according to how much you love God – ten percent (10%) , twenty percent (20%), thirty percent (30%) , fifty percent (50%), seventy percent (70%), eighty percent (80%), ninety (90%) and hundred percent (100%). No amount of measure you use and decide to give to God in your giving is much; you can never outgive God!
BIBLICAL GIVING IN THE NEW TESTAMENT BY THE APOSTLE PAUL
Now let us look at what the Apostle Paul said about the Biblical giving. Why Paul? It is because the Apostle Paul is the Apostle of the Gentiles – Romans 11:13 KJV “For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office.”
Don’t forget that the gospel moved from the Lord Jesus Christ to the Apostle Peter, and from the Apostle Peter, the gospel moved to the Apostle Paul. The doctrine for the church age today is the gospel of the Apostle Paul. Many pastors don’t know this – they lack the understanding of this because they have not gotten the revelation of it – they have not reached the dimension of the revelation of the gospel of the Apostle Paul to the church age today and to the Gentiles. The gospel of the Apostle Paul is the New Testament doctrine for the church age today by revelation.
God used the Apostle Paul to write almost three-quarters of all the books of the New Testament for the church age today. Is there anywhere in all the epistles of the Apostle Paul to the church age where he mentioned that every Christian should pay tithe of ten percent (10%)? The answer is capital and dogmatic NO.
The Apostle Paul never told us because to do so is: (1) despising the finished works of our Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross at Calvary – and (2) going back to the Law of Moses under the Old Testament. Remember that everything in the Old Testament is a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ in the New Testament. For instance, the Lord Jesus Christ was born during the feast of the tabernacle, died during the Passover, resurrected during the feast of the first fruits and started His earthly ministry during the year of Jubilee – all the Laws of Moses under the Old Testament including the law of tithing and sin (trespass) offering fulfilled in Him (Christ Jesus) the reason for the New Testament – Matthew 5:17 KJV “Think not that I (Jesus Christ) am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.’ All the laws of the Old Testament were fulfilled in our Lord Jesus Christ. Praise the Lord! Hallelujah!! Amen!!!
We are under the grace (not under the Law), under the grace of Jesus Christ, therefore we can give more than the ten percent (10%) because of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ in the New Testament – Romans 6:14 KJV, Romans 10:4 KJV and John 1:17 KJV “….for ye are not under the law, but under grace.. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth (every genuinely born again Christian)…For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” We can give by grace.
The Apostle Paul taught that how we give is as important as what we give – that is, the measure of giving. He said in 2 Corinthians 9:7 KJV “Let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver”. This is the Biblical giving by grace in the New Testament.
Why should we give more with absolute love from our heart under the grace? We are to give more under the grace because (1) we love the Lord Jesus Christ unconditionally and (2) we are the product of His grace.
Let us read from verse 6 to verse 7 of 2 Corinthians chapter nine – 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 KJV “But this I (Apostle Paul) 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.” From this Scripture, let me ask you a critical question: how much are you to give? The answer from the word of God says you should give what you have decided in your heart to give – as much as you decide in your heart, that is, you give in measure of the love you have for God in your heart – you must decide in your heart how much to give without grudge or compulsion – not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. Under the grace, you can give more than ten percent (10%)! You decide from your heart with the measure you love God under His grace and you give cheerfully. This is the true Biblical giving in the Bible in the New Testament. Always know and understand that no matter what you give, even hundred percent (100%) like that poor woman (widow) who gave all to God, you can never outgive God! All the genuinely born again Christian believers are the product of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Let me ask you another critical question: how should you give in true Biblical giving under the grace? To answer this question, let us read again carefully 2 Corinthians 9:7 KJV “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.” The answer: (1) it must be from your heart (2) not grudgingly and (3) not of necessity (not under compulsion).
But under the Law of Moses in the Old Testament, it was compulsory, under compulsion, of necessity, even most of the time, it was grudgingly because the law was very difficult for them to obey and practice perfectly. Many today in the church give their tithes of ten percent (10%) grudgingly because they lack the understanding of the teaching of Biblical giving in the New Testament. Many pastors put the church members under compulsion of ten percent (10%) to pay their tithes because they are taking people back to the law of system of tithing under the Law of Moses in the Old Testament. But under the grace of Jesus Christ, every true Christian believer genuinely born again loves God more and he or she will give more through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. God loves a cheerful giver.
Just like in the secular world, many people don’t like paying taxes to the government because it is compulsory for them to pay – paying is not by grace. But the true Biblical giving is more than ten percent (10%) and we love to give more cheerfully by grace while the system of tithing was very difficult for them in the Old Testament and this is one of the reasons for Malachi 3: 8 -10 under compulsion, of necessity and it is always grudgingly in tithe payment. Under the grace, we decide from our heart how much to give to God with much love.
Furthermore under grace, it is NOT only money you can give to God but your time, skills, talent, gift, heart, in fact your whole life because Jesus Christ gave us His life and when He was going back to Heaven to sit at right hand of God the Father, He gave us the best gift the Holy Spirit – Luke 11:13 KJV “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?”
Under the grace, the ministers of the gospel including pastors can be blessed with cash/money by the church members – this is scriptural in true Biblical giving according to 1 Corinthians 9:13-14 KJV “Do ye not know that they which minister about holy things live of the things of the temple? and they which wait at the altar are partakers with the altar? Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.” According to the true Biblical giving, it is right for the ministers of the gospel to be blessed financially and materially by the church members – the word of God has commanded that those who preach the gospel should receive their living from the gospel.
Let us look at another Scripture by the Apostle Paul on true Biblical giving: 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 KJV “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.” Here in this Scripture, the Apostle Paul also mentioned of how to give in the New Testament with respect to true Biblical giving. He said you should give as God has prospered you. You give to the Lord Jesus Christ cheerfully as God has prospered you.
But he in the Old Testament, the giving of tithe and trespass (sin) offering in cash must be fifty percent (50%) under compulsion, of necessity and it is always grudgingly – it is never as God has prospered you from your heart with measure of love you have for God – they didn’t give to God cheerfully because the law of system of tithing and sin offering under the Law of Moses was very difficult to obey and practice perfectly in the Old Testament.
In the New Testament, true Biblical giving is as God has prospered you from your heart you give to God cheerfully. May be this month, God prospered you abundantly, then you give cheerfully from your heart thirty five percent 35%) to God. But next month, may be the business is bad and then you can only afford to give cheerfully from your heart with much love as well ten percent (10%). Then the month that follows, that is, the month after the next month, your business performs excellently well and God really prospers you far better than the bad month, even the first month, then you give abundantly and cheerfully from your heart to God forty five percent (45%) or more. This is the true Biblical giving that the word of God teaches in the New Testament which is completely different from the Old Testament system of giving under the Law of Moses.
Let us look at another Scripture concerning the true Biblical giving in the New Testament whereby every cheerful giver from the heart with measure of much love for God will be abundantly blessed: 1 Peter 5:2 KJV “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind.” This Scripture explained clearly on how to give in the New Testament. We are not to give by constraint.
But the dispensation of system of tithing and sin offering in the Old Testament under the Law of Moses was by constraint. This means that many pastors go to the dispensation of the Old Testament under the Law of Moses and put people under this system of tithing by constraint of ten percent (10%) payment of tithe. This is not what the Bible teaches about the true Biblical giving under the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ in the New Testament with love for God – it (Biblical giving) is never by constraint! By enforcing ten percent (10%) giving of tithe in the New Testament in this dispensation of grace of our Lord Jesus Christ is to enslave the church members with the system of tithing under the Law of Moses in the Old Testament. It is all about giving God from your heart cheerfully with measure of much love of what you have – not you must have to give under compulsion, of necessity and constraint which is always grudgingly. Giving grudgingly to God brings no divine reward (deserved blessing) to the giver!
The message of grace is that oh! This is how God has prospered me, blessed me and because of this measure of much love I have in my heart, I will give cheerfully and bountifully to God which may be far more than ten percent without compulsion, not of necessity and not by constraint. I give more because I love what the Lord Jesus Christ did for me and I love Him from the bottom of my heart.
The message of grace is that I will give bountifully and cheerfully because there is always grace for me to give more from my heart as my God is able to do immeasurably, exceedingly, abundantly above all that I ask or think – Ephesians 3:20 KJV “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.”
The message of grace preaches and teaches grace (how good God is), love and truth of God – and people love God so much that they are ready with the ready mind to bountifully and cheerfully give to God from the bottom of heart with measure of much love for God.
You don’t give because you have to give! But you give because you are the product of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ in the New Testament and you love Him so much. Remember always that grace overrules and removes curse; the Spirit of grace overpowers spirit of fear. Curse and fear are attached to the law ( under the Law of Moses in the Old Testament – Malachi 3: 8 – 10) but there is no fear in perfect love of God in true Biblical giving under the grace in the New Testament – 1 John 4:18 KJV “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.” Malachi 3: 8 – 10, you see fear and curse attached to the law of system of tithing and sin offering under the Law of Moses for the nation of the children of Israel.
In the secular world system, people don’t like to pay taxes – they hate taxes and always look for the loophole(s) to escape the tax payment or to pay less because of the government law but if the benefits of paying taxes were explained to people and the benefits are a blessing to people, surely people will be willing to pay; the same principle applies to the true Biblical giving in the New Testament when people know and understand that they are the product of the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ – and benefits of how much God loves us and His goodness and mercy that follow us always – Psalms 103:1-5 KJV “Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
See the grace of God and His love for us expressed in Lamentations 3:22-23 KJV “It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” Love gives all. OUR GOD IS LOVE – 1 John 4:8,16 “…for God is love…And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love…” IN HIM WE LIVE, IN HIM WE MOVE AND IN HIM WE HAVE OUR BEING – Acts 17:28 KJV “For in him we live, and move, and have our being…”
I am NOT writing to condemn the tithe payment in the church today but it is good to know and understand what exactly the Bible teaches correctly on tithing and everyone will be blessed and appreciate with much love what the Lord Jesus Christ did for us on the Cross of Calvary.
For more discovery by revelation knowledge and a greater level of understanding, awareness, insight of Biblical giving beyond and above the tithe in the New Testament, please read in detail my book at Amazon or read for free at Amazon (KDP) titled “Money Never Paid As Tithes In The Bible Unless Redeemed: What My Pastor Has Never Told Me Concerning Money Paid As Tithes” by Olusegun Ibikunle . It will surely help for further knowledge on the absolute truth on doctrine of tithing (tithes). Click the book as it is displayed at top of this site.
Note: Proverbs 23:23 NKJV “Buy the truth, and do not sell it…”
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