Brethren, we are not told to look unto Abraham, Isaac, Jacob or any other Jewish patriarch; rather the Scriptures say we should look unto Jesus, who is the “Author and Finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12: 2). In the book of Matthew 28: 18 – 20, our Lord Jesus Christ said, “All authority has been given Me in heaven and on earth…Go therefore and make disciples… teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you…”
Interestingly, Jesus Christ handed down a warning saying, “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying ‘I am He’ and will deceive many” (Mark 13: 5 – 6). Paul an apostle of Jesus Christ also wrote, “If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing… who suppose that godliness is a MEANS OF GAIN. From such, withdraw yourself.” (I Timothy 6: 3 – 5). Again, we read in (II John, verse 9) “Whoever transgresses and does not abide by the doctrine of Christ does not have God…”
The giving of tithes whether in its scriptural or in the contrived and bogus components is not in conformity with the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, neither did it chime with the apostles’. It is important to understand that the Scriptures have evidently established that Christians are not under the law but under grace (Rom. 6: 14). By grace, we (believers) are saved and not of ourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works (such, as paying tithes and offering sacrifices) lest anyone should boast (Eph. 2: 8 – 9). We also read, in (Rom. 7: 6) “But now, we (Christians) have been delivered from the law… so that we should serve in the newness of the spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.”
Since ages, Christians have been warned to beware or else, they would be cheated by means of philosophy and empty deceit, according to tradition of men and basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ (Col. 2: 8). Unfortunately, as believers, this is what is dangerously staring us in the face today.
It is an incontestable fact that the tithing ordinance was not instituted to fleece the people in order to raise up colossal and fanciful church auditoriums or finance the luxuries of the church honchos and their families; rather the purpose of tithes then, was to feed the poor, the Levites (because they had no inheritance among the children of Israel), the strangers, the fatherless and the widows ( Num. 18: 21, 24; Deut. 14: 28 – 29; 26: 12). Besides, tithes then, were only commanded to be paid on increase of the land and from flocks and herds (Lev. 27: 30 – 32; Deut. 14: 22; II Chro. 31: 5 – 6) not on wages and profits in trades and businesses as wrongly practiced in some churches today.
In this era of grace, there is No temple in Jerusalem (let alone, other nations) to take tithes to; instead, the Scriptures say that we, the believers are the temple of God and that the spirit of God dwells in us, not in any building called church or cathedral. See (I Cor. 3: 16; II Cor. 6: 16). Sadly, in every nook and cranny of our society, we see the wrong priests from every race all over the globe collecting the wrong kind of tithes from the wrong believers at the wrong period of time in the wrong land and for the wrong purposes.
It is obvious that most believers get easily carried away by the personalities and the social strata of the preachers that they take whatever they dish out as the word of God. What worsened the situation is the docility and over trustfulness of believers in their pastors; and unfortunately, the consequence of this is the burgeoning of tons of false doctrines where the truth is roundly over stretched and doctored without an iota of compunction.
Be that as it may, rounding up this discussion without dwelling on what we should do as Christians since we owe no one anything (tithes not excluded) except to love another (Rom. 13: 8), means that I have failed woefully to achieve the aim of this post.
Our Lord Jesus Christ said, “… Go preach, saying ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, clean the lepers, and raise the death, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give” (Matthew 10: 7 – 8). But the Oga Kpata-kpatas in the church would not want to hear that. Whaaat? Freely I received, freely I preach? No wayyy!
Anyway, Christians are to bear one another’s burdens, by so doing they are fulfilling the law of Christ (Gal. 6: 2). Believers are to give food to their neighbours that are hungry, water to those that are thirsty, provide shelter for strangers, clothe their neighbours that are naked, visit the sick and those in prison (Matthew 25: 35 – 36). Christians are not to make their charitable deeds public; rather their good deeds should be done in secret. They do not need to invite the press or take some quick shots of their charitable deeds and post them on the social media. They shouldn’t! Christians should do their good deeds in secret so that our heavenly Father who sees in secret will reward such believers openly (Matthew 6: 3 – 4). Give to the needy (irrespective of who they are), but not to the greedy. Furthermore, when you give, do it as your heart proposes, not with grudge or of necessity (such as tithes) “for God loves a cheerful giver” (II Cor. 9: 7). Christians must not leave out their enemies in their charitable deeds. If your enemies are hungry, feed them, bless those who curse you and pray for those who spitefully use you ( Luke 6: 27 – 28). Do not organize prayer sessions or all- night vigils to invoke the thunder of God and Holy Ghost fire to strike your enemies to death. Instead, love them, bless those who curse you, do good to everyone hoping not to get anything in return (Matthew 5: 43 -44, Luke 6: 35).
In a society where people show love to one another as rightly advised by our Lord Jesus Christ, no one would lack; no one would be afraid of being poisoned or bewitched by others; no one would become a billionaire and be flying all over the globe in their private jets while people are hungry; no one would want to commit suicide because there are shoulders to lean on; no one would commit adultery with his or her neighbour’s spouse; no one would commit fornication with their brothers or sisters; no one would carry a gun or knife to rob or kidnap others for anything; no one would be homeless; no one would be jobless; etc.
According to (I Peter 2: 9), my dear brethren, as Christians, “we are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood,”
To pay tithes to some heretical and hollow-hearted church leaders is to negate your own priesthood in our Lord Jesus Christ and you are directly saying (God forbid) that His death and resurrection mean nothing in your life. Let us “stand fast therefore, in the liberty by which our Lord Jesus Christ has made us free and let us not allow ourselves to be entangled again with a yoke of bondage (Gal. 5: 1).
Remember Deuteronomy 4: 2, 12: 32, Prov. 30: 6 and Rev. 22: 18 – 19. All these Scriptural passages seriously warned against adding or subtracting from the word if God. May God help us all!
Let those who have ears, hear!
To God be all the glory!