by Harley Howard

Old and New Testament Giving and Old Testament Tithes and New Testament Grace-Giving
Harley Howard
Deuteronomy 14:22-29

As we come into this area on tithes, I guess it would be important to dispel some errors concerning our Christian views that are commonly used about tithing.

One of the errors that we as Christians associate with tithing is that only ten percent of our income belongs to God while the other 90% belongs to us. That is a tragic error that needs to be corrected and we will do that right now. 1st Chronicles 29:10-16. Everything comes from God, belongs to God, and whatever we give to God is what is already His.

Error number two, tithing was only one tenth percent of one(s) crops, or livestock, etc.

That also is not true. We will see that there were at least 2 tithes and possibly even a third tithe that was collected. Not to mention that various reference to sacrifices and freewill offerings, which was also a part of giving to God. What we will find interesting in our study of the entire bible is what the tithe was used for in the Old Testament and look at what we call a tithe today and see what it is used for today.

Error number three, the established practice of giving by the early church was tithing.

That also is incorrect. For several centuries in the early church there was no support of the clergy by a systematic giving of a tithe. Old Testament tithing was primarily for the priest and Levites. In time, the tithe came to be regarded generally after the pattern in the Jewish synagogue. The practice was supported by an appeal to passages as Matthew 10:10, Luke 10:7, but leaders in the church (Irenaeus, Epiphanius) showed that arguments drawn from these passages were not valid. Rather, freedom in Christian giving was emphasized; especially passages from Paul in 2nd Corinthians chapter 9.

Error number four, the church was instructed to tithe in the New Testament letters.

That is not true at all. Paul made it very clear ...

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