Articles > Tithe
How Christians struggle with money issues and the importance of financial stewardship and developing a biblical giving plan
A Biblical Giving Plan
By Bill & Maureen Sitter
God knew that 21st century Christians would struggle
with money issues, and that the devil would try to twist
any discussions of tithes, freewill offerings or alms
for the poor. That's why His Word - the Bible - is so
full of scriptural advice in the area of financial stewardship
We firmly believe that God wants our hearts and not
"our money". Let's examine 2 Corinthians 9:6-8
(KJV) for insight about the grace He wants to give us,
so we can be blessed and cheerful givers. "But
this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap 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. And God is able to make all
grace abound toward you; that ye always having all sufficiency
in all things, may abound to every good work."
In verse 8:7, God again speaks of us excelling in the
grace of giving.
Picture two hearts. One has Jesus at the center and
one has a dollar sign. What's the point? If God has
our full attention, we will make good use of "His
Money" - not "our money". This may be
a huge shift in viewpoints. That's fine, because God
uses His Word and the Holy Spirit to convict us to change,
but never to condemn us.
God's money? Yes - Psalm 50:10 & 11 explains that
God owns the cattle on a thousand hills. 1 Corinthians
10:26 and Psalm 24:1 reinforce the fact that the Lord
owns the entire earth and all it contains. Deuteronomy
8:18 further tells us that even our ability to produce
wealth (any talent we possess) is a gift from God. In
this context - knowing that all we have or ever will
possess comes from God - it is much easier to get our
hearts tender about giving.
In the book Financial Freedom in 7 Weeks Plus, a full
chapter is devoted to developing a three-part Biblical
Giving Plan. Briefly, let's touch on paying tithes,
giving freewill offerings, and sowing alms.
Paying tithes is both an Old and New Testament concept.
Malachi 3:8-12 is most often referenced (please read
all five verses). The Word speaks of robbing God, and
of bringing the whole tithe into the "storehouse"
(church where you are fed); and of testing God who promises
to rebuke the devourer (devil) and to pour out blessings.
In Matthew 23:23, Jesus reinforced the ten percent tithe
when he rebuked the Pharises. They were tithing on garden
plants and not showing justice, mercy and faithfulness.
He exhorted them to tithe but to also display righteousness
in their daily lives. Proverbs 3:8-10 promises health,
if we honor the Lord with our first fruits.
Today, most believers are not farmers so we tithe from
our income. We encourage you to pray (together if married)
and seek God's wisdom. We are confident that you will
desire to pay the ten percent first fruits tithe to
God. Your church is the ideal recipient of the full
tithe because that is your "storehouse", where
you are spiritually fed.
Freewill offerings are in addition to the tithe and
the amount and timing are up to you. We do urge married
couples to agree and to involve children in the giving
plan, as this develops young hearts to be giving hearts.
Jesus told His disciples, in Matthew 28:19&20 to
go and preach the salvation message (Great Commission)
to the world. In
1 Corinthians 9:14 Paul explains that preachers of the
gospel should be funded by other believers. Today, there
are many churches, ministries and missionaries who spread
the good news of salvation. Pray and seek the Holy Spirit's
guidance on where and how you should give, beyond the
Alms are sown for the poor, for widows, and orphans.
There are a number of fine Christian and civil charitable
organizations - such as the Red Cross and the Salvation
Army. See the following scriptures: Proverbs 19:17 and
22:9, 1 Timothy 5:16, and Luke 12:33 & 34. Then
put faith into action!
Develop and execute your own giving plan. Include all
three: tithes, offerings, and alms as vital elements
in your commitment to Christian stewardship.
Water your giving - your seed - with prayer and scripture.
Give from the heart, with joy; and keep your giving
private, in accordance with Matthew 6: 1&2.
Expect God to multiply your seed because He is the
inventor of "heavenly math". That's right,
in Matthew 13:23 (the Parable of the Sower), Jesus spoke
of 30, 60 or 100 fold returns for seed sown in good
soil. Use your calculator and see that this equates
to 3,000%, 6,000% and 10,000% returns. Now, we don't
know how God will multiply the seed, and we never want
to try to manipulate God. But, somewhere He will do
the math and a small seed will produce a big harvest.
This kind of giving blesses others and blesses the giver.