This is actually an interesting read and I'm sure it will stir up some lively discussion...or maybe not...lol. Who knows in these days of apathy?
I agree with that teaching.
Though I don't make a big fuss about it. God asks for us all, not a tenth. The legalistic reliance on the tenth makes people justified in their works. I would say however that those that tithe are atleast making an effort to include their finances in the kingdom, and it is a shame that so many people don't think God has anything to do with their money.
I have given much more than a tenth, but the fact is I often have nothing, and sometimes I have plenty. God is still God, and there is no formula for God's "blessing" other than follow Jesus and you will be blessed with salvation, and the fruit of the Spirit. Not a bad outcome if I do say so myself.
From Frank Viola's book - "Pagan Christianity"
"When did tithing become an accepted teaching in the history of the churchand how should it be regarded today?
Great question. The shocking answer is the 8th century! The early Christians rightly understood that tithing was like an income tax for the nation of Israel. If a Christian wants to give 10% of their income to the Lord?s work today, they are perfectly free to. They are also free not to. In Christ, we are free to give what we wish. The New Testament standard is to give cheerfully and according to one?s ability (2 Corinthians 8-9). That equates to more than 10% for many people."
However, having some sort of structure to your giving is a good thing. I find that when I am " free and easy " in terms of percentages I much more likely to have given less than more.
I found this interesting however :
"Pastor Mike Woodruff claims that if every Christian tithed, there would be enough money to support the church, para-church, wipe out poverty and still have 945 billion dollars left over"
We need to open up our wallets people, I know I am privileged in that I am financially comfortable - but imagine what our money could do!
I would agree with that also. I like what Lewis said, that the only safe rule is to give to the point that your offerings force you to give up things you want to have that are important to you. (Bad paraphrase, have to see if I can find the original text.)