Tithe is defined in the dictionary as the tenth part of agricultural produce or personal income set apart as an offering to God or for works of mercy, or the same amount regarded as an obligation or tax for the support of the church, priesthood, or the like.
Many people today struggle with the issue of tithes(ing). I was actually surprised to read a an article on USA today that said
Five percent of American Christians overall (8% of all Protestants and 2% of Catholics) tithe.
In some churches and Christian broadcasts, tithing and giving is over-emphasized at the expense of other biblical teachings. This has almost become the breeding ground for the belief that the people making these tithing exhortations are out to make money after you give your tithe. Nonetheless, tithing is a biblical principle.
Our first financial adjustment after we got married was on our tithing perspective. We both understood the meaning of giving and tithing, but since we were starting out in debt, we allocated tithe as an item on our budget, so we do not ‘forget’ or give other items priority over the tithe-thanks to my wife.
Is it easier to give when you have more or when you have less? Rockefeller a known American industrialist answered
“I never would have been able to tithe the first million dollars I ever made if I had not tithed my first salary, which was $1.50 per week.”
As a Christian, am motivated to give and tithe because:
- Tithing is an act of worship to God.
- Tithing is an act of obedience to God – Scriptures reveal this truth.
- Is a sign of surrender and submission – The admission that even with all the wealth i can acquire, i cannot live unless He wills. Surrendering to God who says in His word that the earth is mine and the fullness thereof(Psalms 24:1)
- It nurtures the virtue of stewardship- the understanding that God doesn’t own just 10 percent of our money; He owns the other 90 percent too; in fact he owns the “…cattle on a thousand hills.”(Psalms 50:10).
- Tithing solidifies trust in God – not in our resources and or income.
- It is a form of thanksgiving – for resources and blessings he bestows to us.
Until you develop a steward mindset, and understand that nothing you have belongs to you, and if you were to die you will take none of it; you will still continue to struggle with tithing and giving (I have had my share of struggles and i will be sharing them here another day).