News

Puritan Gems

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Elements Of Reformed Worship #5

Tithes and Offerings

"Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need." (Malachi 3:10)

There are few subjects as controversial in the church as that of money. It is unfortunate that many pastors will avoid the subject altogether for fear of offending the greater part of their congregations, who mostly react as a backlash against the robber-barons on TBN. Nonetheless, the Bible has much to say about subject of money, and particularly the subject of giving as part of our worship. One cannot proclaim the whole counsel of God and ignore this subject.

A proper view of the tithe consists of acknowledging the Lordship of God over all things. God owns everything (Psalm 50:10-11), and thus our giving is not for His benefit, but for ours (Psalm 50:12-15). The tithe is to be brought (not sent) into the local church, "that there may be food in my house" (Malachi 3:10). God has designed his church to function financially off of the tithe, in both the Old and New Testaments. A common argument from those who rejecting tithing is that the practice was part of the ceremonial law, and thus should not be observed today. Nothing could be further from the truth. David Chilton responds,

"It is commonly held that we are no longer under any obligation to tithe in this "dispensation." There is not a shred of evidence to support such a position: the law of the tithe has never been revoked. And, it should be noted, while the modern abandonment of tithing has a superficial appearance of freedom, it has actually been replaced with a tyrannical legalism. Listen to any radio or television preacher-or perhaps your own pastor-appealing for funds. If he rejects the tithe, what is the basis for his plea? LOVE. He does not, of course, define love as the Bible defines it- keeping God's commandments (Romans 13:10; 1 John 5:3) - but rather according to the perceived "needs" of his own ministry. God's simple requirement is that we give ten percent of our income; once we have paid His tax, we know that no more is demanded. The modern preacher, on the other hand, defines your love for God in terms of how much you give. ("How much do you love God? Only ten percent? Only twenty? Only thirty? Shame on you! You should love God lots more than that! If you really, completely love Him, you'll sign over your next paycheck to me and drop it in the plate. And don't worry about taking care of your family. How selfish of you. God will take care of them. After all, He's taking care of me, isn't He?") - (David Chilton - Productive Christians in an Age of Guilt Manipulators, p. 52)

Those who honor the law of tithing are free from the manipulation techniques of money hungry charlatans posing as gospel ministers. The tithe is NOT part of the ceremonial law (as some "red-letter Christians" would suggest), because Abram paid tithe before there ever was a ceremonial law. (Genesis 14:20). The writer of Hebrews sanctioned the tithe collected by Melchizedek (a typology of Christ) as being superior to the tithe collected by the Levites (Hebrews 7:8), all without the slightest hint that such practice was to be stopped. Jesus commanded the Pharisees not to neglected tithing in addition to obeying the weightier matters of the law (Matthew 23:23). Finally, Paul clearly tells us that the New Covenant Church was to operate financially in the same way as the Old Covenant Church.

"Do you not know that those who are employed in the temple service get their food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar share in the sacrificial offerings? In the same way, the Lord commanded that those who proclaim the gospel should get their living by the gospel." (1 Corinthians 9:13-14)

The New Covenant church is designed to function financially "in the same way" that the Old Covenant church functioned, via the tithe. A healthy church whose members tithe is a church that should not have the need to beg for money.

Throughout the Scriptures, the giving of tithes are offerings is an intrical part of the saints' worship. The tithe belongs to God (Leviticus 27:30), and therefore we have the duty to render it to Him (Matthew 22:21). Nonetheless, we should not give merely out of duty, but in thanksgiving toward the One who has blessed us to begin with. Other offerings, such as missions offerings, may be given in addition to the tithe as each person sees fit. These are given cheerfully, not begrudgingly (2 Corinthians 7:9).

As fallen creatures, we are constantly being drawn in by the cares of this world, thus the giving of our financial bounty is a good remedy to thwart the world's attempt to draw us away from the things of God, "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Matthew 6:21). Giving is a good test of one's true allegiance, whether we serve God or Mammon. Therefore, giving is an act of confessing your faith in the One who promises to provide the needs for his covenant children. (Matthew 6:25-30).

"Men trust good stewards with larger and larger sums, and so it frequently is with the Lord; He gives by cartloads to those who give by bushels. Where wealth is not bestowed the Lord makes the little much by the contentment which the sanctified heart feels in a portion of which the tithe has been dedicated to the Lord. Selfishness looks first at home, but godliness seeks first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, yet in the long run selfishness is loss, and godliness is great gain. It needs faith to act towards our God with an open hand, but surely He deserves it of us; and all that we can do is a very poor acknowledgment of our amazing indebtedness to His goodness." (Charles Spurgeon on Haggai 1:9, from Morning and Evening)

Recommended Reading: With Reverence and Awe: Returning to the Basics of Reformed Worship by Hart and Muether

47 comments:

Russell Earl Kelly said...

1. WHO #1: The Levitical servants to the priests who received the first whole tithe have been abolished. See Numbers 18:21-24. Modern equivalents to the Levites are unpaid ushers, deacons, choir, musicians, etc.

2. WHO #2: OT priests who received a tenth of the tithe (only 1 per cent) have been abolished. See Num 18:25-28 and Neh 10:38.

3. WHAT: The definition of tithes as only food miraculously increased by God from inside His holy land of Israel has been abolished and replaced with the false unbiblical definition of income. See Leviticus 27:30-34 and 14 other texts which describe the contents of the tithe. Yet money was common in Genesis.

4. WHERE: The destination of the OT tithes first to the Levitical cities some to the Temple has been abolished. See Neh 10:37b and Mal 3:10.

5. WHEN: The time to tithe has been abolished. The Levitical tithe was paid yearly in the Levitical cities. The second festival tithe was eaten at the three festivals. The third poor tithe was kept in the home every third year. Tithes totaled 23 1/3 per cent.

6. WHY #1: The covenant which prescribed them was abolished per Heb 8:8-13; Gal 4:21-26' 2 Cor 3:6-10.

7. WHY #2: The "commandment" for Levites and priests to collect tithes was "annulled" per Hebrews 7:5, 12, 18.

8. WHY #3: The law which condemned believers has been rendered of no effect when the believer died in Christ per Romans 7:4. No law can tell a dead person what to do.

9. HOW #1: Jesus abolished the law of commandments contained in ordinances per Eph 2:13. Tithing was an ordinance per Num 18.

10. HOW $2: Jesus blotted out the handwriting of ordinances, per Col 2:14. Tithing was an ordinance per Num 18.

11. HOW #3: The Temple which tithes supported was abolished in AD 70. God's temple is now within each believer per 1 Cor 3:16; 6:19-20.

12. HOW #4: The priesthood which was supported by tithes was abolished in AD 70. God's priesthood is now within every believer per 1st Peter 2:9-10.

13. HOW #5: The blessings and curses of tithing as part of the whole law have been abolished per Galatians 3:10-13.

Would you continue to send money to a church after
1. The building is destroyed?
2. The preacher has been defrocked?
3. The workers have found other jobs?
4. The members have all left?
5. The land has been inhabited by non religious people?
6. The purpose for the church no longer exists?
7. You have died?

The basis of the grace-giving preachers' plea for money is GRACE --not law. You put yourself into the corner or deciding which of the 600+ "commandments" of the law are still valid for the church. What gives you the authority to keep tithing and reject the other 600 commandments of that same law? Do your preachers own property

The tithe was never equal to income. And none of the tithe requirements from Numbers 18 are obeyed by your church or any other church today: (1) tithes only to servants of ministers, (2) one per cent to ministers, (3) tithe only food, (4) only ministers can enter the sanctuary, and (5) ministers KILL anybody who dares to enter the sanctuary and worship God directly.

Puritan Lad said...

Russell,

It would be nice if you would have dealt with some of my arguments, but instead you have made a case against the Levitical Tithes and the Old Covenant Priesthood, which no Christian would argue with.

Rather than respond to each point, I'll summarize your errors:

1.) We don't pay tithes to Levites and Priests, but those who minister the gospel are to live off of the gospel "in the same way". So all of your arguments against the Levitical Priesthood are irrelevant.

2.) We don't pay the same kind of tithe that was paid to Levites, but we pay a "superior" tithe to the High Priest Christ, just as Abraham did (1/10).

3.) Jesus commanded tithing.

4.) Your arguments against Old Covenant ceremonial laws are irrelevant, since tithing is not a ceremonial law, nor was it tied only to the Mosaic Covenant. (See Abraham above).

5.) If you mean that Christ has abolished the moral law as well, you are wrong. It lasts "forever" (Deuteronomy 29:29, Psalm 119:160), until heaven and earth has passed away (Matthew 5:18). One who continuously, purposely disobeys God's law is not born again (Ezekiel 36:26-27, 1 John 2:3-5). So I am in no bind as far as which commandments to obey. All of the moral laws (including tithing) are to be kept. The ceremonial laws (circumcision, animal sacrifices, etc.) have been fulfilled. We actually still keep these laws, but in their substance rather than their shadows.

God's law is only legalistic if we use it as a means of our justification.

6.) The tithe is the Lord's, not the priest's. Therefore the priesthood is irrelevant, and we are to render to God that which is God's.

Gary Arnold said...

The tithe is the Lord's... We are to render to God that which is God's.

Since the tithe is the Lord's, and The Lord gave the tithe to the Levites, what right does anyone have to give their tithe to other than a Levite? What right does anyone other than a Levite have to take God's tithe?

Leviticus 27:30-33 defines The Lord's tithe as a tenth of the crops and every tenth animal in herds and flocks. What right does anyone have to change that definition to include income?

Do you really believe that God forgot to provide for the future in His Word, and that God expects man to "adapt" His Word according to the times? Those who change the definition to include income must think that God didn't know the future, so they take it upon themselves to rewrite God's Word; thus, it is no longer God's Word.

The Lord's tithe was NEVER on income or anything that man made or earned. The Lord's tithe ALWAYS came from God's miraculous increase. Those who say otherwise are changing God's Word.

The Lord's tithe was PAID. Abraham GAVE a tithe. There is a big difference between paying and giving. God did not command Abraham to give a tithe. You take ONE example and try to turn it into an example for all to follow forever. Yet the Word shows only ONE time that Abraham tithed, and he didn't tithe on his income or wealth.

When will people stop changing God's Word?

Puritan Lad said...

Sorry Gary, but our income IS God's increase. Do you really think you earned a dime without God's blessing? Therefore, the tithe is properly defined as a tenth of that increase (and if we are farmers who live off of our own food without any income, then 1/10 of that food is fitting as well.).

You, like Russell, are vainly trying to establish the tithe as part of the Mosaic Covenant (collected by the Levites). I "take one example for all to follow" because the writer of Hebrews 7 took one example for all to follow. The chapter establishes the authority of Jesus Christ’s high priestly office in terms of Melchizedek’s collection of the tithe from Abraham. It is this tithe that is set forth as a picture of The superiority of the New Covenant to the Old Covenant.

And even if you do believe that the tithe was tied to the Mosaic Covenant (and it's not), you still have to deal with Paul using the Levites as an example of how the church should financially function today. Who has the authority to collect the tithe? Jesus Christ, and those ministering in His name, for they are to live from the gospel "in the same way" as the Levites.

Gary Arnold said...

You are making up the rules, Puritan Lad.

My income comes from MY labor, not God's. The bible says so in Deuteronomy 8:18. God gave us the ABILITY to get wealth. So when I work, it is MY labor producing the results because God gave me the ability to do so.

You have tried to change God's Word to suit what you want it to say, but I am not gullible to buy it. Neither does God.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Yes our income is God's increase. That is not the point. The point is that IN GOD'S WORD the tithe was only God's increase from inside Israel off his own holy land. Why, why, why will you not comment on that or correct it if you can from God's Word?

I can give you 16 texts which prove that the tithe is only food from inside Israel. Not even Jesus qualified as a tithe-payer. Why, why, why won't you comment on that fact and produce a text to the contrary?

You stand almost alone in all of Christendom in proclaiming that Abraham's tithe was superior to the holy tithe of the Law. I ask you to provide some Bible authorities in commentaries who agree. Even if you do, you are still in the extreme minority on this point.

You make the writer of Hebrews say what you want to be said instead of what is being said. Hebrews 7 only uses tithing as a vehicle to demonstrate that Jesus' priesthood is superior to the Aaronic priesthood by typology. Hebrews 7 is not a command to the church to collect tithes and your own theologians know that very well. Why do you not explain 7:12, 18 and 19 which disprove your argument?

Go right ahead and only attach 1 Cor 9:14 to 9:13 instead of 9:7-13. I expect you to teach that the church is to be supported IN THE SAME WAY IN EVERY ASPECT as was the Old Covenant Temple from 9:13. You don't dare teach that.

Puritan Lad said...

Gary,

Let me see if I can understand your position. The ancient Israelites did not labor, they just sit back and let God do everything for them? Really? However, today God simply gives us ability to do stuff, and then just sits back and watches us work without any intervention whatsoever? Therefore, we don't need God to be actively involved in our work, just his handsoff endowment of "ability". Is this what you believe? If not, then I need to know whjat you feel the difference was between the increase that the tithing Israelites obtained and what you obtain. I'm just not clear here.

God gives us the ability to get wealth, and he also gives the wealth (Proverbs 10:22)

"The LORD makes poor and makes rich; he brings low and he exalts." (1 Samuel 2:7)

God is Sovereign Gary. You can't even breathe without the sovereign hand of God giving you each breath. Yet you assume that you may obtain wealth without God's soveriegn increase? That's not Christianity Gary. That's deism.

Russell,

You continue to try to tie the tithe to the Mosaic Covenant, and have still failed to do so, as I have established in Hebrews 7. Verses 12, 18, and 19 do not "disprove" anything, as they deal only with the ceremonial aspects of the law, and the tithe was not cermonial but moral (robbery), and thus lasts until heaven and earth pass away.

The fact that the tithe only applied to Israel in the Old Covenant is irrelevant, (unless I were arguing for tithine outside of the authority of the church, for Israel is the church (in both Old and New Covenants). It was Israel only who received God's revealed will. In the Old Covenant, Israel typified the church, and anyone in the Old Covenant who was redeemed had to become a Jew (Exodus 12:48), but there was one law for both the stranger and the native of the land (Exodus 12:49). As Israel was the church in the Old Covenant, why do we assume that they lose authority to take up tithe in the New Covenant? What God considered to be sinful in Israel was not tolerated just over the state line, nor did God's Holy law begin with it's revelation to Moses. God destroyed Sodom and Gemorrah for their "lawless deeds" (2 Peter 2:6-8). And as mentioned earlier, Christ took tithe from Abraham before the law was revealed to Israel.

Christ also paid tithe, for he was born under the law, and fulfilled the law. He also commanded the pharisees to tithe (see above), and then told his disciples to observe and do whatever the Pharisees told them, but to avoid their hypocrisy (Matthew 23:2-3). In the New Covenant, that which Jesus commanded His disciples is to be observed by "all nations" (Matthew 28:19-20).

Regarding the fact that Abraham's tithe to Melchizedek (a theophany of Christ) was superior, the Scripture itself tells us that, particularly verses 5-7. What else needs to be said there? I never suggested that this was a commandment for the church to take tithe, for that is commanded in other places. This was an answer to your question about who has the right beside a Levite to take a tithe. The answer is Christ, who is superior to the human priesthood, for His priesthood is forever.

Finally, I never said that 1 Corinthians teaches that "the church is to be supported IN THE SAME WAY IN EVERY ASPECT as was the Old Covenant Temple". The statement addresses how those who minister the gospel should live, and the answer is "in the same way" as "those who are employed in the temple service" (the tithe).

The New Testament commands tithing, and continuously puts it's stamp of approval on the practice. Malachi writes, "Will a man rob God?" That is the question that I will ask you and Gary. If God owns it, we are obligated to render it to Him. It is really that simple. The tithe belongs to the Lord, and the burden of proof is on you to show that the Lord and His Church have relinquished ownership of the tithe in the New Covenant.

Gary Arnold said...

The tithe was on crops and animals. No matter how much labor man puts into it, man could not make the crops and animals. The tithe came FROM God's hand, NOT man's labor. Man harvested the crops, etc., and transported God's tithe to the Levites. The Israelite farmers had income, but that is NOT what they were commanded to tithe on.

Common sense tells me that if tithing were commanded or expected in the New Testament, Paul would have taught tithing. Why did it take church leaders nearly 1,900 years before they discovered tithing on income? A little study of the history of tithing will show why and when church leaders started teaching tithing on income.

A lesser point - Church leaders have borrowed an accounting term, "gross income" and tell people they should be tithing on their gross income. Yet I have yet to find a church leader who even knows the correct definition of gross income. Gross income does not equate to increase.

The Word is very clear to me that tithing ended at the cross. The Word is also very clear to me that no one is following the Old Testament laws of tithing today. Rather, church leaders pick and choose what they want to follow, and then change the words to fit their purpose.

It is my personal opinion that teaching tithing along with Malachi 3:8-10, robbing God, is not only immoral, it is a crime against God Himself.

Earl said...

Gary Arnold Let me demonstrate your fallacies. What you say is a bunch of empty wind. Let me show you why.
First of all, you imagine that the crops and animals which came from the Lord do not constitute income. But in an agrigarian society, that was most definitely their income, which they were commanded to tithe on. So in reality, it is you who does not understand what the term "gross income" really means, because you imagine that it is something seperate and distinct from God's increase and blessings upon His people. You are mistaken in this your "lesser point", and you are also mistaken in your main point, which is to say that Puritan Lad is teaching something that is "Immoral" and a "crime against God Himself". This is a serious and unfounded accusation. In it you express your hatred not only for Malachi 3: 8-10, but for all the rest of the verses in the Bible which clearly teach and command tithing, and which you choose to reject
Your attempt to appeal to "common sense" is totally wasted. The notion that if Paul does not mention tithing, then it is not expected or commanded in the New Testament is fallicious. Paul did not write the whole New Testament, only those portions which God wanted Him to write.Are we supposed to throw out the rest of the New Testament because Paul didn't write it? This is not "common sense" it is an outright denial of the inspiration of the rest of the New Testament which you choose not to believe.
It is also fallicious to say that the church waited 1900 years to start teaching about tithing. The church in all ages was well enformed about this doctrine, because they studied and read the Bible. The doctrine of tithing is not founded on any words of Paul, nor is it invalidated by any words of Paul either. Paul realized, that he did not have to teach about a doctrine which was well known and understood by everyone. To render unto Caesar the things which are his (taxes), and to render unto God the things which are His (tithes), was a concept that all Christians clearly understood, because that is exactly what the Lord Himself taught in Matt. 22:21, Mk.12:17; and Lk.20:25. So there is no need to seek for instructions from Paul, or anyone else. The Lord taught the concept of paying taxes and paying tithes.Tithing is further elaborated by the Lord in
Mat 23:23 "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone". The Lord told the Pharisees and scribes "ye pay tithes...and this you ought to have done"! No amount of parsing and twisting can eliminate the plain meaning of Christ's own words. Christ did not think that tithing is "immoral" and is a "crime against God". Who the hell do you think you are to imply blasphemy like that about our Lord's perfect teachings? You are way out of line. I'm suprised Puritan Lad allowed your trash to stay on His blog. He should have nixed it. You not only hate anything that did not come from Paul, You hate the very words and plain teachings of Christ Himself. Your arrogance is as bad as any I have ever witnessed in my 36 years of Reformed ministry.You better cultivate some of that "common sense" you speak about, and follow what Christ taught and not the feeble and convoluted reasoning of your own brain. If the omniscient Lord endorced tithing, who are you, or anyone else to say that it is immoral and criminal? You my freind are way out of line on this. You owe Puritan Lad an apology. But more importantly you owe Christ one! Because it is His words you have selectively chosen to disbelieve.

Gary Arnold said...

Earl - You obviously have no accounting background, nor do you understand all the verses regarding the tithe.

The Israelite farmers DID HAVE INCOME, but that is not what they tithed on.

They had markets to buy and sell their crops and animals. This is shown in Deuteronomy 14:22-27.

You, like others, have missed the whole point of The Lord's tithe. You apparently don't know the difference between an asset and income.

Furthermore, church leaders say that the FIRST ten percent goes to God while Leviticus 27:32-33 says it is the tenth one, not the first, whether it be GOOD OR BAD. So the BEST did NOT go to The Lord and neither did the first go to The Lord.

Those who continue to tithe diminish what Jesus did on the cross. In case you didn't know, we are under GRACE now, not under a bunch of laws.

Those who say and teach that tithing ENDED AT THE CROSS, and that there is NO tithing in the Christian Church include the following:

Scholars at the SOUTHEASTERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY who published their report on tithing in 2005, John MacArthur, Chuck Swindoll, J. Vernon McGee, Robert Baker (chief SBC historian), Dr. David Croteau and Dr. Russell Kelly (both of whom wrote their thesis on tithing to get their Ph.D.), Phillip Schaff (historian), Alfred Edersheim, James W. Winfree Ministries, C. I. Scofield, Craig Blomberg (Denver Seminary), Geoffrey W. Bromiley (Fuller Theological Seminary), Charles Ryrie (Dallas Theological Seminary), Walter A. Elwell (Wheaton College), Theodore H. Epp (founder Back to the Bible), Gary Friesen (former Dean of Multinomah College), Scholars at the Dallas Theological Seminary, DALLS THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY, TALBOT BIBLE COLLEGE, and the list goes on and on.

A study of the history of tithing will show that tithing on income started in the second half of the 1800s.

Roger Moore, founder of the Baptist Church in the US said there would absolutely be NO tithing in the Baptist Church. Over 200 years later, the church leaders decided to start teaching tithing BECAUSE THEY NEEDED MORE MONEY TO FINANCE MISSIONS THEY HAD PLANNED.

Tithing is NOT for born-again believers any more than any other part of the Old Testament Law. You can't pick and choose what you want to bring forward. I am led by the Spirit, NOT by laws and regulations.

I DO believe in generous and sacrificial giving.

Puritan Lad said...

Gary,

I need to separate this response into two parts due to it's length,

First, I'm not a Southern Baptist, a denomination that also ordains women, so I'm not too concerned with your list (argumentum ad populum). (No offense intended to my SBC Brothers who stand up for Biblical Worship.) I can give you many more names of scholars that support tithing, but it would be the same logical fallacy to do so.

Second, God's moral law never ends, as I have already shown. Jesus told us that we are to live by "every word that procedes out of the mouth of God", not only the red letters that you arbitrarily decide upon. Jesus commanded tithing. As I have already established, the tithes was NOT tied to the Mosaic law, and so your flawed arguments against the law bear no weight, even if they were valid, which they are not.

Regarding the moral law, it never ends, but lasts until heaven and earth pass away. “The sum of your word is truth, and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.” (Psalms 119:160)

When God gave the Law to Israel, He commanded them to observe the words of this law forever (Deuteronomy 29:29). He made it very clear that it was never to be added to or taken from (Deuternomy 4:2). Nor did God ever once suggest that His law was for once particular race of people. God's law was for both Jew and Gentile (Leviticus 18:26, Leviticus 24:22). In fact, the reason God drove out other nations from the Promised Land is because they “would not obey the voice of the LORD” (Deuteronomy 8:20; Deuteronomy 9:4). They were disobedient to the very same laws that God gave to Israel (Leviticus 18:24). As Greg Bahnsen writes, “what was sinful in Israel was not tolerated just over the state line”. This is why God condemned Sodom and Gomorrah for their "lawless deeds" (2 Peter 2:8). God has one law for all people (Exodus 12:49; Numbers 15:16, 29) at all times (Psalm 89:34, Psalm 119:160). Jesus taught His Disciples to obey the law (Matthew 5:17-18), and that which Christ taught His disciples was to be observed by “all nations” (Matthew 28:19-20).

Puritan Lad said...

The Bible knows nothing of an “age of law” and an “age of grace”. Taking your arguments to their logical conclusion, you must believe that the OT saints were saved by the law since, according to you, "grace" has only been around since the work of Christ.

But your biggest problem is that Paul himself knew nothing of a "Paul-only" theology. Paul quotes the Old Testament over 90 times, mostly to support his own teachings. He uses the law on several occasions to define sin (see Romans 7:7), for he writes that “…through the law comes knowledge of sin” (Romans 3:20). As John writes, "sin is the transgression of the law" (1 John 3:4). Indeed, the law will become irrelevant on the day that sin becomes irrelevant.

Paul’s entire theology is built on the Old Testament. Speaking at his trial, he tried “to convince them about Jesus both from the Law of Moses and from the Prophets” (Acts 28:23). He encourages the New Testament church to study the Old Testament, “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4). Such a view of the Old Testament would be labeled by most Christians today as “legalism”. In like manner, Paul tells Timothy that “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Why do you reject Paul's own teachings on the law Gary?

Gary, I mean this next section for your well-being. Beware of your hatred for God's law. Jesus warned that anyone who claimed to know Him but did not keep His commandments was a liar (1 John 2:3-5). These aren't my Words Gary, but God's. God also tells us that obedience to His laws are proof of the new birth (Ezekiel 36:26-27). Christian's are to obey "even the least commandement", not as a means of our justification (legalism), but because Christ is Lord. That, ultimately, is the reason for the tithe. It is the Lord's.

In any case, tithing is tied to the Abrahamic Covenant in which we, through Christ, are partakers. Tithng is commanded, practiced, and approved of throughout the Scriptures. Again, my argument for tithing is simple. According to the Word, the tithe is the Lord's, and we are to render to God that which is God's. The burden of proof is on you to show that God relinquished ownership of the tithe in the New Covenant. So far, you've simply repeated the same arguments that are both wrong (see law passages above) and irrelevant (tithing is NOT tied to the Mosaic law).

Gary Arnold said...

Part 1

To clarify my points, and to answer Earls question and I quote, "Who the hell do you think you are..."

I was born, raised, and currently live in one of the world's most productive agricultural regions. I grew up around farms. My grandparents were farmers. I have other relatives that were farmers. I had close friends that were farmers. Many church goers in this area are farmers. There are farms just a few blocks from my current home in Central California.

I have a B.S. Degree in Accounting. My entire working career consisted of being an Accountant and INCOME Tax Auditor. It was part of my job to determine the INCOME of a farmer. This is my expertise. During my working career I was known as an authority on the subject. After my retirement a few years ago, Certified Public Accountants and Attorneys paid me at a rate as high as $600 an hour just to spend time on the phone with them answering their questions. People in other states contacted me and paid me similarly to figure their taxable income for them.

Farmers today figure their INCOME the same way they did in Biblical times. A farmers INCOME comes from the SALE AND/OR BARTER EXCHANGE of their farm products, such as crops and animals. Farmers have always known that their crops and animals were not their income, but rather their assets, from which they made their income.

I believe that because of my strong background in accounting and taxes, The Lord called me, last year, to teach the subject of tithing. The Lord gave me, through the Holy Spirit, may revelations on this topic, and instructed me what to teach.

Those who say the crops and animals were the income of the Israelite farmers are incorrect.

When you have a plumbing problem, call a plumber for help. When you have an accounting problem, call an accountant. Determine INCOME is an accounting problem.

Preachers are quick to teach that you tithe on your GROSS INCOME. Yet I have not found a preacher who even knows the correct definition of GROSS INCOME. No one who understands the meaning of GROSS INCOME would tell anyone to tithe on it. Few individuals even know what their correct GROSS INCOME is.

Gary Arnold said...

Part 2

The is no place on a U.S. Individual Income Tax Return to enter GROSS INCOME. GROSS INCOME is not a item that appears on an individuals Form W-2. GROSS INCOME does not appear on an employees paycheck stub. The reason is simple. There are many items of GROSS INCOME that are excluded from Income Tax, Social Security Tax, and Medicare Tax; therefore, employers do not report an individuals GROSS INCOME on those forms. Figuring a persons true GROSS INCOME can be very complicated, and most individuals do not have the information needed. Yet preachers say you are robbing God if you don’t tithe on your GROSS INCOME.

I suggest you look up the word INCOME in a dictionary. The word INCOME does not appear in the KJV of the Holy Bible; therefore, GROSS INCOME does not appear in the Bible. Ask any accountant how to figure a farmer’s INCOME, or GROSS INCOME.

Those are my qualification for claiming expertise in this area. Now, Earl, who the “heck” you think you are saying that the crops and animals was the farmers’ income? What are your qualifications to make such a statement?

In Matthew 23:23 Jesus is speaking to the law keepers, who were under the law, who were under the Levitical priesthood. Tithing was to support the Levitical priesthood. That priesthood ended, and so did all laws associated with it. That is made clear in Hebrews 7:5, 12, 18.

Malachi 3:8-10 is referring to the ordinances of tithing – specifically the Levitical tithe since verse 10 refers to the storehouse. The Levitical tithe is the only tithe in God’s Word that any part of went to the storehouse. The whole Levitical system ended at the cross; therefore, Malachi couldn’t possibly apply today.

I believe all 600+ laws ended at the cross. But even for those who disagree, tithing was NEVER commanded on INCOME. To teach tithing on INCOME is changing God’s Word and must assume that God didn’t know the future, and/or that God didn’t provide for the future in His Word.

Puritan Lad said...

Gary,

I would love to have a conversation with you, but it would help if you would actually deal with my arguments, instead of simply repeating the same thing over and over again.

We are broadening this discussion to cover the law (even though the tithe, once again, is NOT tied to the Mosaic law),
Having said that, let's deal with this statement

"I believe all 600+ laws ended at the cross."

I doubt that you really believe that. Is it Ok for Christians to have sex with animals, sell their daughters as prostitutes, or trip blind people? I doubt that most antinomians would answer in the affirmative. Which laws would you say we should keep? What does "forever" mean? How is a Christian to live, and to determine good from evil without the law?

Paul's instructions adamantly demand keeping the moral law, and in many other places assume it's validity. For example, Paul instructs us time and again to "flee sexual immorality". The only problem is that Paul never tells us what sexual immorality is. What does Paul expect us to flee from? He never defines sexual immorality. He didn't have to. Leviticus 18 does a more than adequate job of defining sexual immorality.

Your hyperdispensationalism pits Scripture against Scripture, and results in an everchanging God that makes Him not God.

Having said all that, the tithe is NOT tied to the Mosaic law (and even if it was, the gospel preachers are to make their living "in the same way"). You will have to show me one passage in Scripture that says that tithing has ceased, or that the Lord has relinquished His ownership of it. Not belittling your education or position, but I need arguments from Scripture, not from accountants.

Gary Arnold said...

I do in fact believe that all 600+ laws of the Old Testament ended at the cross.
Colossians 2:13-17
Galatians 5:18
Hebrews 8:6, 7, 13
Galatians 3:19
Galatians 3:23-25
Galatians 3:10-14

To me it is clear. The law was to bring us to The Lord. Once we are born again, and receive the Holy Spirit, the law serves no purpose. The Spirit guides me in my living. The Spirit shows me right from wrong. The law is only good (or needed) for those who haven't receive the Spirit.

I see nothing in the Abrahamic Covenant where God required Abraham to tithe. In fact, the scriptures show only ONE incident of Abraham giving a tithe, and that was on war spoils, NOT from his own wealth. There is nothing that the Christian Church teaches that in any way resembles Abraham's tithe.

You show me one scripture where God commands anyone to take a tithe to the Christian Church. Show me one scripture where God ever gave the Christian Church permission to receive His tithe.

Earl said...

Gary,
It is obvious that you are enamored with yourself, and your special revelations on this subject, and that you do not care one iota about what Christ has said. Puritan Lad is right when he points out that you just keep uttering the same senseless drivel over and over, about how preachers should not preach the Bible until they seek the aid of an accountant like yourself who knows what gross income is, because you have recieved a special revelation about it while you were counting pigs on your grandparent farm.

You go right ahead and reject the 600+ commandments that you choose to disbelieve. And you go right ahead and reject the plain words and teachings of Jesus Christ who is the final authority on all things. And you go right ahead and keep on worshipping your little list of scholars who apparantly know more about the Bible than God Himself. And you go right ahead being so hung up on the Levites that you cannot understand Abraham, Melchizedek, Christor the book of Hebrews. Go ahead and continue being so proud and headstrung that you cannot hear the voice of God. Because when all is said and done, you will be left hanging on to your gross income, your pigs and your chickens, you text books and and your degrees and you will be asking yourself was I really that stupid oh Lord, that I refused to hear you. Go ahead. You deserve exactly what you get.

Earl said...

Gary,
Thank you for finally referencing some verses out of the Bible. I was beginning to wonder if you ever read it, because you seem so much more interested in your own opinions, rather than those of Christ. The verses you sent us to do, in fact, make reference to the Law and its function in the New Covenant. But Tithing is not a Law ordinance, it is a creation ordinace. That's why we find it early on in the book of Genesis, long before the giving of any Mosaic ordinances. In fact, there are hints of it when Cain and Able brought their offereings to the lord. What were they doing? and why was Cains not accepted. Most people understand that both Cain and Able knew the right way to worship God, and knew what kind of offereings to bring, and knew that the tithe is the Lord's. God implied that Cain knew about this stuff when he said "If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door" Gen.4:7.

You should stick to accounting, and quit trying to be a Bible expositor, because you do not have a proper perspective on things. You confuse things that are obviously different. Tithing predates the Law (Gen.14: 20; 28:22) and it also supercedes the Law (Heb. 7:2,6,8) "And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth"( Heb. 8: 8).
People who really know the Bible, and who love the Lord have been trying to explain the truth to you, but you refuse to hear it. So stick to the accounting. At least in doing that you will not be commiting blasphemy.

Earl said...

Gary,
Thank you for finally referencing some verses out of the Bible. I was beginning to wonder if you ever read it, because you seem so much more interested in your own opinions, rather than those of Christ. The verses you sent us to do, in fact, make reference to the Law and its function in the New Covenant. But Tithing is not a Law ordinance, it is a creation ordinace. That's why we find it early on in the book of Genesis, long before the giving of any Mosaic ordinances. In fact, there are hints of it when Cain and Able brought their offereings to the lord. What were they doing? and why was Cains not accepted. Most people understand that both Cain and Able knew the right way to worship God, and knew what kind of offereings to bring, and knew that the tithe is the Lord's. God implied that Cain knew about this stuff when he said "If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door" Gen.4:7.

You should stick to accounting, and quit trying to be a Bible expositor, because you do not have a proper perspective on things. You confuse things that are obviously different. Tithing predates the Law (Gen.14: 20; 28:22) and it also supercedes the Law (Heb. 7:2,6,8) "And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth"( Heb. 8: 8).
People who really know the Bible, and who love the Lord have been trying to explain the truth to you, but you refuse to hear it. So stick to the accounting. At least in doing that you will not be commiting blasphemy.

Gary Arnold said...

There is absolutely nothing to back up that tithing is a creation ordinance. Tithe means tenth. The scriptures do not show that either Cain or Able gave a tenth of anything. That is pure denomination fabrication.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Yes, tithign predates the law. So does idolatry, child sacrifice anda temple prostitution. What does hta prove? Notdhing.

Abraham's mandatory tithes of pagan spoils of war were not the same as holy tithes from a holy land. Nothing Abrham did concernign tithess is followed by you today.

You snub Gary because he is not a trained theogian. I am. Take me on if you dare.

Tell me why you can live on tithes and also own property contrary to the tithing law of Numbers 18.

Earl said...

Russell Earl Kelly,
You admit that tithing predates the law, but by comparing it to idolatry, child sacrifice and temple prostitution, you prove that you are unable to discern between sacred things and pagan things. You dismiss the tithing that took place before the Mosaic economy by saying "What does that prove? Nothing!" It proves that tithing is not a matter of Mosaic legislation. That's what it proves. The quoting of legislation through Moses was only a clarification of Divine principles which had already been established prior to his law system. You show that you are not to be trusted as any kind of theologian because you are willing to trash the Genesis accounts of tithing by saying "what does that prove?" and by linking it to perverted and sinful acts that also occured prior to the Mosaic Law code. And then you want us to justify our actions in relation to Numbers 18 So why should we believe that you are trained Theologian who can contribute something Biblical to this discussion? You are just as confused as Gary Arnold, and the two of you should be happy together riding on your anti-tithing hobby horse. I hope you keep one another amused, because I for one find your billigerant handling of the word of God offensive and diplorable. Especially if you think you are a theologian. A theologian bows to the "Theos". A theologian does not rip and twist and selectively ignore portions of the "Theos'" Holy Bible. A theologian, respects the word of God and submits to its authority over any and all preconceieved notions. How can you be a theologian when you things so highly of your own opinions, and think so lowly of God's own Holy Word. You are no theologian. You are a false teacher. A blind leader of the blind. But I refuse to listen to your false theologianizing. Respect Christ, and not your own opinions.

Puritan Lad said...

[sarcasm] Hmm. Isn't child sacrifice and temple prostitution mentioned in the law? Surely you don't believe that this still applies do you? Did this end at the cross? Can you give me a new testament passage prohibiting such? [/sarcasm]

Puritan Lad said...

Gary,

How do you know that the Spirit you follow is that of God? What is the Biblical Test?

"And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules." (Ezekiel 36:26-27)


The Spirit and the law go hand in hand, and can never contradict each other. Sola Scriptura!!!

Gary Arnold said...

Puritan Lad - Last year I was asked to teach a Sunday School Class in finances. At that time I didn't know very much about the tithe, so I thought I'd better be prepared for any questions regarding tithing.

I am sharing this with you at the risk of being ridiculed, but I speak from the heart.

When I started studying the Word, I noticed that what I was finding was not what I had been taught. I then prayed, and prayed, and prayed, and asked God to reveal the truth to me.

God did so, through the Spirit, over a period of ten days - a little each day, when I woke up in the morning. I would then immediately go to my Bible to see if what the Spirit told me matched the Word. And it did, all ten days. God made it very clear to me that He NEVER intended man to tithe on man's income but rather on what God had given to man. And He told me to "tell the people" what He had told me. And that is what I am doing.

No matter what anyone says, I know it was God speaking to me. I know He revealed the truth to me because He knew, with my accounting background, that I would understand the problem.

My test - IF what the Spirit tells me lines up perfectly with the Word, it came from the Spirit. You may say it doesn't line up with the Word, but the Spirit has shown me that it does.

Tithing ordinances established at creation is nothing but speculation with no Biblical basis.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Ed: You admit that tithing predates the law,

Russ: If you read the Bible, pagan dust defiled. There was no holy tithe accepted from outside Israel. If you disagree, then show me the texts or church historian. The kind of tithing which predates the law was purely pagan. It did not come from God's miracle increase from inside His holy land. Every priest-king in Canaan and around Abraham's world collected tithes.

Ed: … but by comparing it to idolatry, child sacrifice and temple prostitution, you prove that you are unable to discern between sacred things and pagan things.

Russ: You are unable to discern that pagan spoils of war are far different from the holy tithe from the holy land of the law. You falsely conclude that pagan spoils of war are holy.

Ed: You dismiss the tithing that took place before the Mosaic economy by saying "What does that prove? Nothing!" It proves that tithing is not a matter of Mosaic legislation. That's what it proves.

Russ: No, it does not. It proves that, just because something is very old and very common, that does not meant that it is moral and eternal.

Ed: The quoting of legislation through Moses was only a clarification of Divine principles which had already been established prior to his law system.

Russ: You are making this up and your opinion does not make something right. I could use your own backward logic to argue for idolatry.

Ed: You show that you are not to be trusted as any kind of theologian because you are willing to trash the Genesis accounts of tithing by saying "what does that prove?" and by linking it to perverted and sinful acts that also occured prior to the Mosaic Law code.

Russ: Do you want to play this stupid game? You trash me and I trash you?

Ed: And then you want us to justify our actions in relation to Numbers 18.

Russ: Numbers 18 is the statute-ordinance of the Law which defines tithing. Theologians call it the "chair" passage. Why do you want to ignore it and not answer my questions from it?

Ed: So why should we believe that you are trained Theologian who can contribute something Biblical to this discussion?

Russ: Why should I believe that you know what you are talking about?

Ed: You are just as confused as Gary Arnold, and the two of you should be happy together riding on your anti-tithing hobby horse.

Russ: It is called the truth. Not even Martin Luther taught tithing. Did John Calvin?

Ed: I hope you keep one another amused, because I for one find your billigerant handling of the word of God offensive and diplorable. Especially if you think you are a theologian.

Russ: Why don't you explore the Word of God and texts in more detail instead of calling those who disagree with you names? That is un-Christian.

Ed: A theologian bows to the "Theos". A theologian does not rip and twist and selectively ignore portions of the "Theos'" Holy Bible. A theologian, respects the word of God and submits to its authority over any and all preconceieved notions.

Russ: Believe it or not, there are very highly educated theologians outside of Covenant Theology. Do you spew your venomous names on them also? Or do you wait until they disagree with you?

Ed: How can you be a theologian when you things so highly of your own opinions, and think so lowly of God's own Holy Word. You are no theologian. You are a false teacher. A blind leader of the blind. But I refuse to listen to your false theologianizing. Respect Christ, and not your own opinions.

Russ: How can you be a theologian when you things so highly of your own opinions, and think so lowly of God's own Holy Word. You are no theologian. You are a false teacher. A blind leader of the blind. But I refuse to listen to your false theologizing. Respect Christ, and not your own opinions.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Puritan Lad

That part of the Old Covenant which is eternal and moral are repeated in the New Covenant in terms of grace and faith after Calvary. Tithing is not repeated.

What is your hermeneutic for bringing things from the Old Covenant into the New Covenant?

Stealing is brought over into the New Covenant after Calvary. If you live on and accept so-called "tithes" and still own and inherit property, then you are stealing and violating the principles of the law given in Numbers 18. How do you justify that?

Russell Earl Kelly said...

If you guys are going to use the word "law," then I ask you again to define how you are using it.

If the New Covenant involves God writing His law into our hearts, then which of the 600+ laws are you referring to?

Earl said...

Gary you are right in pointing out that Cain and Abel cannot be sighted as examples of tithing. I suggested that tithing might be a possible explanation for what happened, but I could never prove this, nor could anyone disprove it either. We do not base the concept of tithing as a creation ordinance on Gen. 4. We base it upon Gen.14:20; Gen. 28:20-22 and Heb. 7:1-10. These are the passages that teach us that tithing was practiced in the very ancient period shortly after the creation of the world...way before the Mosaic Tithing regulations which were for the Jews.

Now here is what you must do if you expect us to understand the special revelation that the Holy Spirit gave you during the ten days when he taught you everything which "lines up perfectly with the word" concerning the doctrine of tithing. You must prove that the verses from Genesis either are false or they do not apply to the discussion showing that tithing is a pre-Mosaic practice. Then you must show how Christ really did not endorse tithing in Matt.23:23; Lk.11:42, and Lk. 18: 12. Lastly you must prove that tithing does not exist now, after the dissolution of the Law Code, by explaining away the present tenses of the verbs in Heb.7:8, which show that tithing continues now after the cessation of the Mosaic Law code. When you have done these things, and dealt with all these verses, you will have proven that the Holy Spirit did indeed give you special enlightenment and knowledge that "perfectly lines up with the word". But until you address each verse, and show us what the Holy Spirit told you about them, we have to assume that you are deluded and misled by your own experiences. I do believe that the Holy Spirit does indeed show people the actual truths of scripture, as you have described. But if it is true,and if it is the actual truth of scripture, and if it is of the Holy Spirit, then you should have no problems addressing these verses, because the Holy Spirit wrote them. Share with us your special knowledge and enlightenment about them. If God showed it to you, then He should be able to show it to us also. Maybe he is using your special knowledge to do just that. I am certainly open to that idea. God can teach all of us truths which we may not have previously known. So please address these verses and not just verses pertaining to the Mosaic administration. That is the only way we can understand your special knowledge and apply it to our own thinking. The Holy Spirit would never rob us of any knowledge He has shown you. So please address the verses and deliver your God given truth to us so we can know it also.It will not do to just claim that you perfectly line up with the Bible. Prove it. Show it. Demonstrate it. And then all of us will believe it and change our thinking at once.

earl said...

Russ,
Those of us who believe in tithing for the present, do not have any issues with Numbers 18. We are not ignoring it. We believe it completely, and interpret it correctly as it relates to Israel. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of tithing now, because the Law code was nailed to the cross. Nobody is miss-interpreting Numbers 18, or ignoring any of your questions concerning it. It simply does not apply to us, it applied to them. We do not sit ourselves in the "chair" of that "chair passage" as you call it, because it has nothing to do with us. You need to move yourself out of that "chair passage" and move yourself over to Heb.7:8 and explain why the present tense verbs are not really there, and show how tithing no longer exists, in the light of that verse which says that God recieves our tithes in heaven even while men are recieving them here on earth. Please pull yourself out of your Old Testament chair, and explain the verses which are the real issue.

Puritan Lad said...

Russ: "That part of the Old Covenant which is eternal and moral are repeated in the New Covenant in terms of grace and faith after Calvary".

Response: So how was in enacted on the Old Covenant? Like I mentioned to Gary earlier, your approach to Scripture, if taken consistently, requires that the Old Covenants saints were saved by law.

Russ: "Tithing is not repeated."

Response: This is both untrue and irrelevant, as I have shown.

Russ: "What is your hermeneutic for bringing things from the Old Covenant into the New Covenant?"

Response: Basically Historical Grammatical, in a way which honors the authority of both Testaments, honors the authority of the New Testament in interpreting the Old, and honors the Old in terms of what the New is built upon.

Russ: Stealing is brought over into the New Covenant after Calvary. If you live on and accept so-called "tithes" and still own and inherit property, then you are stealing and violating the principles of the law given in Numbers 18. How do you justify that?

Response: You are bound and determined to tie the tithe to the Mosaic Covenant, but this has been addressed many times. Pastors are not Levitical Priests. Scripture says that they should function financially in the same way, not adopt every mannerism of the Levitical Preisthood.

Besides, even if this were valid, that would make pastors wrong in owning property, not in living off the tithe.

Now let me repeat, one more time, the basic argument for tithing. Scripture says that the tithe is the Lord's. In the New Covenant, we are to render to God that which is God's. It is up to you (or Gary) to show in Scripture that God has relinquished His ownership of the tithe in the New Covenant. I still haven't seen any evidence of this yet.

And as this is getting to be a testy thread, I'll let this be my last word on the subject until my basic arguments have been addressed.

Gary Arnold said...

Earl: You need to move yourself out of that "chair passage" and move yourself over to Heb.7:8 and explain why the present tense verbs are not really there, and show how tithing no longer exists, in the light of that verse which says that God recieves our tithes in heaven even while men are recieving them here on earth.

Gary: What about Hebrews 7:5 which also uses the word receive, not the past tense, talking about the sons of Levi who RECEIVE the priesthood, HAVE (not had) a commandment to take tithes.

In Hebrew 7:8, the "here" is referring to the sons of Levi. It doesn't say NOW.

You haven't addressed the scripture I referenced previously. If you want me to answer your questions, then show me why you ignore the scriptures I have given to you. How are you using the word "law". Are you picking and choosing which laws came forward? The Bible treats all laws as ONE UNIT. Either ALL were nailed to the cross, or NONE were nailed to the cross.

earl said...

Gary,
Thanks for finally moving over to the New Testament. You have shown that at least you have read the passage in Hebrews 7. And you are correct about your observation in verse 5 concerning the Levites.

The passage is a comparison and contrast between the Levitical priesthood, who recieved tithes under the Mosaic Laws; and the Melchizedekian priesthood, who recieve tithes under a prior system which derives its authority directly from heaven (verses 7-11). The Levites right to collect tithes was derived from Moses, and when the Mosaic Law system ceased, their rights also ceased (v.12). We do not operate under those laws or that Jewish system. A better system is now in place, a more ancient and permanent one, the system of the Melchizedekian priests (vs. 11-14). We are no longer under the tithing regulations of Moses (v.13-16) we are under the direct preisthood of Christ the high preist who is after the order of Melchizedek (vs.15-17).

The present tense in verse 5 relates to the Levites, as you have pointed out. The present active indicative in verse 8 relates to Christ who is in heaven. He is not counted as a decendant of the Levites (v.6). He is the one who is better than them. And They are "lesser" than Him (v.7). The Levites paid their tithe to Him, in Abraham (v.9-10).

Since you have finally begun to study this chapter you should have no trouble seeing that Melchizedek is better than Levi, and that His preisthood supercedes Aaron's preisthood (vs. 11-12), and that the Law of preisthood and tithing has been changed from Moses to Melchizedek (vs.12-28).

If you see this, then why on earth do you think that those of us who believe in tithing today, are trying to do it under some kind of laws given by Moses to the Jews? We know that our churches are not Levitical institutions. We know that our paid Pastors are not Levitical priests. We know that God is done with the Mosaic Law code as a system of righteousness. But we also know that our great high priest Jesus, who is forever after the order of Melchizedek, now recieves tithes in heaven (v.8).

So now that you have read this chapter and have seen what it actually says, please explain to me why Christ does not recieve tithes according to the laws of His eternal and superior priesthood? He is entitled to them and he in fact recieves them. He has been recieving them under His superior system since the time of Abraham. So on what do you base your argument that He does not recieve them? Show us verses that say that the tithes do not belong to the Lord.

Gary Arnold said...

Earl - I didn't finally read Hebrews 7. I have been studying this topic for nearly two years.

You are mistaken. The "here" in Hebrews 7:8 is referring to the sons of Levi.

Hebrews 7:11 starts a new paragraph that now speaks of a new priesthood.

Why is it you say we are not under the law of tithing, yet you reference Matthew 23:23 which refers to matters of the law? Jesus is only confirming to those under the law that they should be tithing.

Why is Malachi 3:8-10 being used in this blog when verse 7 clearly shows God is referring to his ordinances, which were nailed to the cross?

You are not consistent in your interpretation.

As has been pointed out previously, your teaching of the tithe has nothing in common with Abraham's tithe. Pagan spoils of war. One time. Kept nothing for himself.

To clear up an apparent misunderstanding - I never said that God taught me everything there is to know about tithing in ten days. He only taught me areas I was having a hard time understanding. After those ten days, I have continued my studies, being led by the Spirit.

earl said...

Gary,
PART ONE
I have to do this post in two sections because it is too long.

Even if you start a new paragraph in verse eleven, there are problems inherent in making verse 8 refer to the sons of Levi. It says "there He he receives them" and it is speaking of "He that liveth". According to your idea that this is talking about "the sons of Levi" then answer these two questions. Where is the "there"? and who is "He that liveth"? While you are at it then, who is the man in verse 6 whose descent is not from the sons of Levi? And who is the superior man who blesses the inferior in verse 7? If you answer these questions correctly, then you cannot apply verse 8 to anyone other than Jesus Christ, and His priesthood. To make them apply to the sons of Levi is to rob Christ of His true and etrnal priesthood, because you choose not to acknowledge it till verse 11. I would suggest that you read the entire passage in the ESV or the NIV so that the archaic language does not continue to confuse you. Let me just quote verse 8 from the ESV to show you how simple it really is to understand, when we put it in current English.

"In the one case tithes are received by mortal men, but in the other case, by one of whom it is testified that he lives."

The contrast is between the earthly and the heavenly, the temporal and the eternal, the temporary priesthood of the Levites and the permanant priesthood of Melchizedek.

In Matt. 23;23 Jesus is clearly speaking to Jews who were under the Mosaic administration. I did not deny this, question it, or doubt it for one minute. In this verse, and in Lk. 11:42, Jesus is in no manner addressing your incorrect understanding that because the Law has ceased, tithing has ceased also. That is not what He is doing, saying, teaching, or implying. In fact, He is actually linking tithing to what He calls "the weightier matter of the law". And what were these weightier matters? "Judgment, Mercy, and Faith"! In Luke it says "Justice" and "The Love of God"! Obviously Christ is not linking tithing to anything which would be done away with by the dissolution of the Mosaic Law system. Has "Justice" been done away with? How about "Mercy"? Was mercy part of the Mosaic Law that would cease? "Faith" and the "Love of God" have surly have not passed away, have they? Matt. 23:23 clearly shows that Christ endorses tithing. He links it to the abiding and "weightier" contents of the law, and by doing that He show us that it is just as wrong to expect tithing to cease, and to teach people not to tithe, as it is to teach someone that the love of God, Faith, mercy or judgment has passed away. Matt. 23:23 cannot be interpreted your way, without doing violence to the plain words of Christ. When you can prove that faith, justice, mercy and the love of God have ceased, then you might be able to prove that tithing is irrelevant.

earl said...

Gary,
PART TWO

Now as far as Mal. 3: 8-10, you must have me confused with someone else who used those verses to try to support present day tithing. I do not use those verses that way. I have never included them in any of my discussions because they don't apply to us, just like the verses in Moses' Jewish social and religious laws don't apply to us. I don't base my belief in Tithing on Numbers 18 or Mal.3 or any of the verses legislating tithing for the Jews. The only verses that teach tithing today are found in Genesis, Matthew, Luke and Hebrews. The people who try to support present day tithing by using Levitical laws and Malachi, confuse the issue and confuse people just like you and the other people who are offering valid points, but are coming to wrong conclusions because of the mis-use of passages like Malichi. We are not under the Law of Moses. So how on earth could we ever base a doctrine for today on that? It cannot be done. And that's why people like yourself are confused. I don't blame you for wanting to reject the doctrine of tithing as you understand it. You see it as a Levitical and Mosaic institution which has been done away with, and that is indeed true. The present doctrine of tithing is not Mosaic or Levitical. We should never use those verses to try to make our point. The present doctrine of tithing is Melchizedekian. It applys to Christ's priesthood and no other priesthood. So it is wrong to take the inferior laws of an inferior priesthood and try to make them apply to Christians. That is wrong. I can see how you might think that's what I am doing, because to you everyone who teaches present tithing, uses the mosaic verses. But that is not the case. I am just as much against misapplying the Laws of the Levites to the church as you are. You are right in that respect. But you are still wrong in saying that tithing to Jesus Christ does not apply today. I will never resort to Mosaic laws ro Malichi to try to convince you of the beautiful Christian principle that the Lord recieves our tithes in heaven. I just won't do that. I hope this helps to clarify my position.

Gary Arnold said...

Earl - First it was Puritan Lad who used Malachi twice in his original blog, and again when he addressed both Dr. Kelly and myself.

As far as Hebrews 7:8 you listed a couple versions of the Bible that might help me. Neither helped, but maybe the following versions will help you:

Hebrews 7:8 (ICB)
Those priests get a tenth, but they are only men who live and then die. But Melchizedek, who got a tenth from Abraham, continues living, as the Scripture says.

Hebrews 7:8 (NLT)
In the case of Jewish priests, tithes are paid to men who will die. But Melchizedek is greater than they are, because we are told that he lives on.

Hebrews 7:8 (TLB)
The Jewish priests, though mortal, received tithes; but we are told that Melchizedek lives on.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Ed to Gary: You must prove that the verses from Genesis either are false or they do not apply to the discussion showing that tithing is a pre-Mosaic practice.

Russ: I have demonstrated that spoils of war from defiled pagan dust are not the same as holy tithes from a holy land increased only by God. You cannot prove that they were holy.

Ed to Gary: Then you must show how Christ really did not endorse tithing in Matt.23:23; Lk.11:42, and Lk. 18: 12.

Russ: We do not argue that Christ did not endorse tithing. We argue that he MUST have endorsed tithing BEFORE CALVARY while the law was still in full force per Gal 4:4-5. You must show us where tithing was endorsed AFTER Calvary as part of the New Covenant. We argue that you ignore the context of Mt 23:23 and Lk 11:42 where it is clearly a discussion of "matters of the law."

Ed to Gary: Lastly you must prove that tithing does not exist now, after the dissolution of the Law Code,

Russ: Tithing cannot exist now because the land of Israel is not dedicated to and by a holy God to produce food. Everything about tithing ended either at Calvary or at AD 70: (1) The Temple building ended. (2) The Aaronic priesthood ended. (3) The Levites ended. (4) The Levitical cities ended. (5) The Old Covenant ended. (6) The statutes-ordinances of the Old Covenant ended.

Ed to Gary: … by explaining away the present tenses of the verbs in Heb.7:8, which show that tithing continues now after the cessation of the Mosaic Law code.

Russ: Why is Hebrews 7:8-9 present tense? That is very easy. It was written before AD 70 and tithes were still being given to the Temple system!!! --not to the church!!! That is a logical conclusion from Acts 15 and 21, especially 21:20. You ignore Hebrews 7:12 and 7:18 which demand a conclusion that tithing from 7:5 was changed and that "change" was its "disannulment of the commandment going before." Explain that.

Ed to Gary: When you have done these things, and dealt with all these verses, you will have proven that the Holy Spirit did indeed give you special enlightenment and knowledge that "perfectly lines up with the word". But until you address each verse, and show us what the Holy Spirit told you about them, we have to assume that you are deluded and misled by your own experiences. I do believe that the Holy Spirit does indeed show people the actual truths of scripture, as you have described. But if it is true,and if it is the actual truth of scripture, and if it is of the Holy Spirit, then you should have no problems addressing these verses, because the Holy Spirit wrote them. Share with us your special knowledge and enlightenment about them. If God showed it to you, then He should be able to show it to us also. Maybe he is using your special knowledge to do just that. I am certainly open to that idea. God can teach all of us truths which we may not have previously known. So please address these verses and not just verses pertaining to the Mosaic administration. That is the only way we can understand your special knowledge and apply it to our own thinking. The Holy Spirit would never rob us of any knowledge He has shown you. So please address the verses and deliver your God given truth to us so we can know it also.It will not do to just claim that you perfectly line up with the Bible. Prove it. Show it. Demonstrate it. And then all of us will believe it and change our thinking at once.

Russ: Since we have knocked out all of your arguments, we would appreciate a note of agreement. While you are at it, tell us what you think Acts 21:20 infers about tithing.

earl said...

Gary,
PART ONE
Another 2 parter

I agree with you. Puritan Lad made a poor use of texts when he chose to use Malachi to support the doctrine of present day tithing. It does not apply at all. But that was not me, and at least you understand that now.

The English Standard Version, which I recommended and the NIV, are actual translations from the Greek. The Living Bible and the other two versions which you referred me to are not. The word "Melchesedek" is not found in verse 8 according to the Greek. This was supplied by the people who wrote the paraphrase versions which you are relying on to support your case. Stick with a recognized and readily accepted translation so that you don't get somebodies personal insertions. Here is the actual text. Please show me the name Melchizedek in it?

και ωδε μεν δεκατας αποθνησκοντες ανθρωποι λαμβανουσιν εκει δε μαρτυρουμενος οτι ζη

Just as his name does not appear, nor does the doctrine that tithing is not for today. Even if Melchizedek were in this verse as your paraphrases falsely indicate, it would simply show that He is the one who is now eternally alive and he is the one who is now recieving the tithes. I have absolutely no problem proving that Melchizedek is Christ. But it is far easier to stick with the actual translation of the Greek text rather than inserting someones name because somebody was trying to clarify something that needs no clarification.

Handling the Bible honestly always involves studying the original language texts. If you cannot do that, then the next best thing is to use a reputable literal translation. Ligonier publishes the ESV under the name "The Reformation Study Bible". I am confident that that would help you more than a whole pile of non-reputable versions. It's like the Jehovahs Witnesses who only want to use the New World Translation. We cannot let them do that, because it is not a recognized translation. They could not read what they wanted in the real Bible, so they simply re-translated it. I don't know about you, but I don't let them use it when they come to my house, because I can prove that it is a mis-translation that has no semblance to the real word of God.

earl said...

Gary,
PART TWO

Now back to the issue of the text. Who is the man in verse 6 whose descent is not from the sons of Levi? And who is the superior man who blesses the inferior in verse 7? If you will pay attention to these verses and answer these questions, as I asked you to do, then you will understand who is alive and in heaven recieving tithes now in verse 8. Why don't you just answer these simple questions? I am not asking you trick questions here. I am not trying to mislead you into some false heresy or strange doctrine. I would never do that to you. I just want you to deal with the verses as the actually are. These questions are derived from the text. If you do not answer them, you will never come to the true understanding of this passage of God's word. This is how we learn. We ask questions like: "What is God saying here? What does it mean? Who is He talking about? Who is He talking to? Who is this person? Who is that person? What is the historical background? etc." We learn by answering questions. So please answer the ones I have asked. I believe they will help you. Ask the Holy Spirit to show you the answers, just like He showed you the other things which he taught you. I'm not being sarcastic. I actually do believe that the Holy Spirit did teach you that all those Mosaic verses do not apply to today. Now He wants to teach you about the verses that correctly teach that tithes are recieved by the lord Jesus. He collects them as the high Priest forever after the order of Melchisedek. You are very close, but still a far way off. Answering these questions will allow the Holy Spirit to show you the rest of the truth about how the Lord recieves His tithes today. I have no reason to be trying to mislead you here. I have nothing to gain by it. I do not recieve financial contributions or anything by teaching this doctrine. Answering these questions will help you, not me. I already know the answers, but you don't. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you. That is what He does. I can't do it. But He does it all the time. I sincerely hope this helps.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Ed to Russ: Those of us who believe in tithing for the present, do not have any issues with Numbers 18. We are not ignoring it. We believe it completely, and interpret it correctly as it relates to Israel. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of tithing now, because the Law code was nailed to the cross. Nobody is miss-interpreting Numbers 18, or ignoring any of your questions concerning it. It simply does not apply to us, it applied to them.

Russ: Since you agree with Gary and me that the law "has noting to do with the issue of tithing now, then you will not be able to use any law text to support your arguments. I propose that you have backed yourself into a corner and the only definition of "tithe" left to you from God's Word is "ten per cent increase from spoils of war from defiled pagan dust." You have my permission to tithe all of that you can obtain.

Ed: We do not sit ourselves in the "chair" of that "chair passage" as you call it, because it has nothing to do with us. You need to move yourself out of that "chair passage" and move yourself over to Heb.7:8 and explain why the present tense verbs are not really there, and show how tithing no longer exists, in the light of that verse which says that God recieves our tithes in heaven even while men are recieving them here on earth.

Those of us who believe in tithing for the present, do not have any issues with Numbers 18. We are not ignoring it. We believe it completely, and interpret it correctly as it relates to Israel. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the issue of tithing now, because the Law code was nailed to the cross. Nobody is miss-interpreting Numbers 18, or ignoring any of your questions concerning it. It simply does not apply to us, it applied to them. We do not sit ourselves in the "chair" of that "chair passage" as you call it, because it has nothing to do with us. You need to move yourself out of that "chair passage" and move yourself over to Heb.7:8 and explain why the present tense verbs are not really there, and show how tithing no longer exists, in the light of that verse which says that God recieves our tithes in heaven even while men are recieving them here on earth. Please pull yourself out of your Old Testament chair, and explain the verses which are the real issue.

Heb 7:8 And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth.

Russ: I learned the "chair" concept from a book on Hermeneutics written by Presbyterians.
"And here men that die receive tithes" means that the Temple was still operating and tithes were currently being received by men who would eventually die.
"…but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth." But "there" IN GENESIS 14 Melchizedek, a type of Christ because of his order and by interpretation of his name (7:1-2) never died only because he had no genealogy. The second very is not in the Greek. If God had wanted the Church to teach tithing, He would have said that the CHANGE from 7:12 was its transfer to the Church. However 7:18 says that the change was a "disannulment fo the commandment going before" which refers to tithing in 7:5.

Ed: Please pull yourself out of your Old Testament chair, and explain the verses which are the real issue.

Russ: I did. Now you explain 7:12 and 7:18.

Gary Arnold said...

Earl - Hebrews 7:6,7 Melchizedek. That doesn't change anything. That just reinforces that verse 8 is also referring to Melchizedek.

You asked me to show you the name Melchizedek in verse 8. How about you showing me the name Jesus in verse 8.

See, your arguments are no good.

I normally stick with the KJV and I didn't have to leave it to determine what verse 8 is saying. The other translations I gave were to show that obviously other scholars agree with my interpretation. Show me ANY version that uses the name Jesus in that verse.

earl said...

Russ,
Acts 21:20 says nothing about tithing, so how could it infer anything about tithing?

You said: "Tithing cannot exist now because the land of Israel is not dedicated to and by a holy God to produce food. Everything about tithing ended either at Calvary or at AD 70: (1) The Temple building ended. (2) The Aaronic priesthood ended. (3) The Levites ended. (4) The Levitical cities ended. (5) The Old Covenant ended. (6) The statutes-ordinances of the Old Covenant ended."

Everything you said is 100% true except for your first four words: "Tithing cannot exist now". I fully understand your view. In your mind tithing is linked to all the things which you point out corrctly that have ceased. Now it is true that the Jewish, Mosaic, Levitical tithes ceased at the cross or at 70 AD as you have correctly stated. The Lord does not now recieve tithes under any of those systems, laws or locations. They are done. They are finished. But that does not prove your first statement; "Tithing cannot now exist". The things you have sited cannot prove your thesis, because they are dead issues. You have to prove that "tithing cannot now exist". Just because one form of tithing has been done away with, does not prove that a superior form cannot now exist. That is the whole crux of this matter. Hebrews teaches us that an inferior priesthood was replaced by a superior one. The blood of bulls and goats and all things pertaining to inferior worship was replaced with the blood of the everlasting covenant. A better system is now in place. It is called the "everlasting" covenant because it is permenant, and all of it's features are "everlasting". The High Priest of this better covenant is called Jesus Christ. He is a preist "forever" after the order of Melchisedek. In Heaven He currently recieves His tithes, which have nothing to do with the Old Covenant or the Laws of Moses. This is a better priesthood...eternal in the heavens. How can you say that "Tithing cannot exist now"? Can you tell the great high priest what he can or "cannot" do? I beg to differ with you. TITHING CAN EXIST NOW. TITHING DOES EXIST NOW. Christ recieves tithes in heaven now. Please prove that He cannot now do what He wants under the "everlasting" covenant.I am telling you that "tithing can indeed exist now". It has absoluely nothing to do with Levites, Aaron, Moses, Temples in Jerusalem, The Law,or anything that ended at Calvary. It has to do with the "eternal covenant", the "everlasting Melchisedekian priesthood", better promises, a better system, a better priesthood, better worship, a new and living way, and Christ's present session in heaven.

I think that you should read all of the posts which I have posted here, but particularly the ones to Gary. The Laws have indeed been changed. We are not under any the former things. That is the explaination that you wanted regarding the "disannulment of the commandment going before." They are done. Fini! Over. But that does not show or prove that Christ "cannot" now recieve the tithes under a better system. He does, and that's what Hebrews is all about...a better system which is now in force, and which has replaced the old useless system.

You said in concluding: "Since we have knocked out all of your arguments, we would appreciate a note of agreement."

How could you have knocked out all of my arguments when you do not understand any of them? Furthermore, Why are you trying to knock out my arguments in the first place? We are talking about God's word here, not playing a game of debating ping pong. If my arguments are incorrect, God will take care of them, and I will gladly listen to Him, and bow to all that He says. But as far as a note of agreement, I cannot give it till you quit telling God that "tithes cannot now exist".

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Russ to Lad: According to Romans 2:14-16 even Gentiles who did not have the written law had the moral law written in their hearts by conscience and nature. The moral law is found throughout the Old Testament and not merely in the Ten Commandments. In the OT it often read as "Thou shalt not" whereas in the NT after Calvary the moral law is "I will" and is obeyed because believers are new creations in Christ and are indwelt by the Holy Spirit. They obey because it is part of their new nature.

According to Titus 2:11 everybody who has ever been saved has been saved by grace alone. Justification came at the Passover and the law was only given for sanctification to those who had already been justified.

Russ: "Tithing is not repeated."

Lad: This is both untrue and irrelevant, as I have shown.

Russ: Show me where it is commanded to the Church after Calvary in the New Covenant in terms of grace and faith.

Lad: … honors the authority of both Testaments, honors the authority of the New Testament in interpreting the Old, and honors the Old in terms of what the New is built upon.

Russ: You believe that the Old Covenant has been slightly tweaked to become the New Covenant. I believe that the New Covenant is a totally new document --just as the US Constitution is a completely new document from British law. God never commanded the Gentiles to keep the Law.

Lad: You are bound and determined to tie the tithe to the Mosaic Covenant, but this has been addressed many times. Pastors are not Levitical Priests. Scripture says that they should function financially in the same way, --- not adopt every mannerism of the Levitical Preisthood.

Russ: There is no evidenced that NT pastors were required to be full time or supported by tithes. I see just the opposite in 1 Cor 9:12-19 and Acts 20:29-35. The underlined portion above is a contradiction. If "in the same way" of 9:14 only refers to 9:13, then you are bound to follow everything included in 9:13. You are defeating your own argument.

Lad: Besides, even if this were valid, that would make pastors wrong in owning property, not in living off the tithe.

Russ: They are correct in owning property because none of the tithe laws applies to them. Tithes are always only food from inside Israel in God's Word.

Lad: Scripture says that the tithe is the Lord's.

Russ: Yes, in Leviticus 27:30-34 which is the last five verses of Leviticus. The rest of the 27 chapters say that almost everything in Leviticus was either "holy" or "most holy" to the Lord. You cannot throw out all of Leviticus and only keep the last five verses.

Lad: It is up to you (or Gary) to show in Scripture that God has relinquished His ownership of the tithe in the New Covenant. I still haven't seen any evidence of this yet.

Russ: Read Acts 21:20. Before AD 70 the Jewish Christians in Jerusalem paid tithes TO THE TEMPLE SYKSTEM. After AD 70 the Temple was gone and there is no biblical evidence that tithes went to the Church. No early church father taught tithing for the first 200 years. Check your own church historians.

Lad: And as this is getting to be a testy thread, I'll let this be my last word on the subject until my basic arguments have been addressed.

Russ: I have replied to your basic arguments. You have ignored the implications of Acts 15:1-2; 21:20; Hebrews 7:12, 18 and the 16 texts which define biblical tithing.

Russell Earl Kelly said...

Ed to Gary: and that the Law of preisthood and tithing has been changed from Moses to Melchizedek (vs.12-28).

Russ: Since you ignore 7:18 you have reached the wrong conclusion. The Bible does NOT say that the law of tithing has been "changed from Moses to Melchizedek." Rather it clearly says in 7:18 that the law of tithing, "the commandment going before," has been "disannulled."

Ed to Gary: So now that you have read this chapter and have seen what it actually says, please explain to me why Christ does not receive tithes according to the laws of His eternal and superior priesthood?

Russ: And of course by "Christ receiving tithes" you mean gospel pastors and reverends. They get to have their cake and eat it too. They get 10% of tithes instead of 1% and still own and inherit property. The purpose of tithe in Hebrews 7 is to teach that Jesus replaces Aaron.

Ed: He is entitled to them and he in fact receives them. He has been receiving them under His superior system since the time of Abraham. So on what do you base your argument that He does not receive them? Show us verses that say that the tithes do not belong to the Lord.

Russ: ,
Thanks for finally moving over to the New Testament. You have shown that at least you have read the passage in Hebrews 7. And you are correct about your observation in verse 5 concerning the Levites.

The passage is a comparison and contrast between the Levitical priesthood, who recieved tithes under the Mosaic Laws; and the Melchizedekian priesthood, who recieve tithes under a prior system which derives its authority directly from heaven (verses 7-11). The Levites right to collect tithes was derived from Moses, and when the Mosaic Law system ceased, their rights also ceased (v.12). We do not operate under those laws or that Jewish system. A better system is now in place, a more ancient and permanent one, the system of the Melchizedekian priests (vs. 11-14). We are no longer under the tithing regulations of Moses (v.13-16) we are under the direct preisthood of Christ the high preist who is after the order of Melchizedek (vs.15-17).

The present tense in verse 5 relates to the Levites, as you have pointed out. The present active indicative in verse 8 relates to Christ who is in heaven. He is not counted as a decendant of the Levites (v.6). He is the one who is better than them. And They are "lesser" than Him (v.7). The Levites paid their tithe to Him, in Abraham (v.9-10).

Since you have finally begun to study this chapter you should have no trouble seeing that Melchizedek is better than Levi, and that His preisthood supercedes Aaron's preisthood (vs. 11-12), and that the Law of preisthood and tithing has been changed from Moses to Melchizedek (vs.12-28).

If you see this, then why on earth do you think that those of us who believe in tithing today, are trying to do it under some kind of laws given by Moses to the Jews? We know that our churches are not Levitical institutions. We know that our paid Pastors are not Levitical priests. We know that God is done with the Mosaic Law code as a system of righteousness. But we also know that our great high priest Jesus, who is forever after the order of Melchizedek, now recieves tithes in heaven (v.8).

… explain to me why Christ does not recieve tithes according to the laws of His eternal and superior priesthood? He is entitled to them and he in fact recieves them. He has been recieving them under His superior system since the time of Abraham. So on what do you base your argument that He does not recieve them? Show us verses that say that the tithes do not belong to the Lord.

Russ: Heb 7:18 For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of its weakness and unprofitableness, 19 for the law made nothing perfect; on the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.

Earl said...

To everyone involved in this thread,

I have pretty much stated my position. And I see no need to state anything else. I agree with Puritan Lad, that tithing is now in force under the terms of the the better priesthood, the everlasting covenant, and a new and heavenly way. The former things have passed away, so there is no Jewish laws, Mosaic legislations, Levitical priests, temples or crops grown in the holy land that apply to the new and better way. Christ is a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek, and it is according to that eternal priesthood that He now recieves His tithes. I do not agree with Puritan Lads use of verses which pertain to Moses' Jewish tithes, as proof texts for the current better system of tithing that is in place. That is where a lot of the confusion has arisen. The only verses which support Christ's current tithing system are found in Genesis, Matthew, Luke, and Hebrews. All the rest of the tithing references pertain to the Levitical system which has vanished away along with the laws pertaining to it. They were nailed to the cross.

I think Puritan Lad is correct in teaching the reformed position that Tithes are currently applicable for Christians. I just wish that he had used better references to establish this fact.

I think that I have offered a correct exegesis of the relevant passages, and I have laid them out painsteakingly here for you all to consider. But now I am done. I wish you all the best that God could ever have for you. I meant none of you any harm, but only tried to express the truth for you to recieve. This is like any other Biblical doctrine. We must all unlearn things that are not true, things that cannot be clearly demonstrated from the word. And we must all embrace all the truth as it is in Christ. Failure to do this hurts not only us, but those around us. But most of all it hurts the cause of God and truth. Let us all be people of the light, and walk in the light, as that is the only place He dwells. God bless you all.

Mike said...

John Owen, Hebrews 7 Commentary, Observation XXIII, Paragraph 4

Discussion over:)

Email me for the .pdf if you would like to read it.
knightspawn2@hotmail.com