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The Widow's Mites


Standing Firm In Christ

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It doesn't matter what motive a preacher has to preach tithing since there are no biblical grounds for such. Christians are not called to give any certain percentage or amount so to preach otherwise is unbiblical, false teaching.

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While I'm thankful for Bro. Alan's testimony that he has never used Malachi 3:10 as a proof text for Christian tithing...and his testimony that he agrees that Christians aren't commanded to tithe...such a testimonial is few and far between. At least it is in my area.

In my area (and MANY other areas that I know of), pastors and teachers use any and every "tithing" passage to say that we are to tithe today. Not only that, they pull out God's command to Israel for "firstfruits" as proof that Christians are to tithe on their gross income. Their justification is that God wants your firstfruits. They haven't even studied enough to know that Israel's command for their firstfruits was completely seperate from the command(s) to tithe. God wanted Israel to offer their firstfruits AND their tithes.

Why do we get so upset when someone uses scripture to justify a false doctrine? Such as, Hagee's false doctrine about salvation for the Jews. We get upset about the false doctrine concerning losing salvation. We get upset about SDA's false doctrine about keeping the sabbath and other commands. We get upset about women pastors. We get upset about people who deny the Trinity. We get upset about the prosperity gospel. We get upset about people who promote hyper-grace. We get upset about people who put down the KJV. We get upset about every false doctrine out there (and rightly so)...but tithing gets a pass...even though it's a false doctrine for today's church.

If you want to see whether Christians are supposed to tithe today, it requires a little study...but it's very simple. Look for this...who, what, where, why, and when.

  1. Who was to tithe?
  2. What was to be tithed?
  3. Where were they to tithe?
  4. Why were they to tithe? (In other words, what were their tithes to be used for?)
  5. When were they to tithe?

You'll have to read more than just the verse where tithing is mentioned. Such as, Malachi 3:10...you'll need to read the entire book of Malachi to find out who God was saying was robbing him of tithes.

After you have discovered the answers to the who, what, where, why and when of tithing, look to see where God ever changed who, what, where, why, and when. I'll go ahead and give the answer. The who, what, where, why, and when has been changed...but not by God or his word.

Now look to see what the New Testament says about our giving...using the same who, what, where, why, and when. Also, don't be shocked when you realize the answers. Today's church has added a lot to what God's word says and "requires" about New Testament giving.

Now...with all of that said...I also believe that if a person desires to give 10% (or more) of their income, that's wonderful...as long as it comes from THEIR heart instead of a pastor or teacher saying we are supposed to, or God will send the Devourer to get his tithe anyway.

Which brings up another false doctrine often promoted about church members "tithing"...used to scare people into tithing.

God's gonna get his tithe one way or another!

Such as...

  1. You might end up in the hospital, and you'll have to pay your tithe then!
  2. Your car might break down, and you'll have to pay your tithe then!
  3. Your children might get sick, and you'll have to pay your tithe then!

It preaches really good! Except for the fact that God's not getting "your tithe" in such scenarios. The hospital is getting your money. The mechanic or parts store is getting your money. The doctor and pharmacy are getting your money...not God.

 

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:goodpost: In fact, excellent post NN! The only thing I would add is that a persons heart needs to be led by the Lord after prayer regarding their giving. While some recognize this, many are very haphazard in their giving. Some give whatever they happen to grab out of their pocket with no thought (let alone prayer) at all. Others give based upon whatever formula they are working with at the time. Some out of a sense of guilt. Some hoping to receive extra financial blessings based upon how much they give. Etc.

The point about "God's going to get His tithe one way or another" and similar arguments along the lines of "don't worry about your bills, just pay your tithe even if you can't afford it and God will take care of those bills" are some of the most egregious teachings. I know of folks who have gone into great debt trying to follow these teachings; those who have lost their homes, marriages and other things due to poor money management based upon their preachers teaching (which is so very similar to some of the prosperity preachers they are quick to call false teachers!).

Yes, even Baptists have problems with men's traditions having become "doctrine" that is fought to preserve. I've heard preachers say if they didn't constantly preach on the tithe and push their congregation to tithe their church wouldn't have any money at all. If such were true, then it would be better to preach on salvation and growth in Christ because when a congregation is living for the Lord the church will have its needs met.

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21 minutes ago, No Nicolaitans said:

Why do we get so upset when someone uses scripture to justify a false doctrine? Such as, Hagee's false doctrine about salvation for the Jews. We get upset about the false doctrine concerning losing salvation. We get upset about SDA's false doctrine about keeping the sabbath and other commands. We get upset about women pastors. We get upset about people who deny the Trinity. We get upset about the prosperity gospel. We get upset about people who promote hyper-grace. We get upset about people who put down the KJV. We get upset about every false doctrine out there (and rightly so)...but tithing gets a pass...even though it's a false doctrine for today's church.

We also get upset about Replacement Theology; however, much of today's church practices a form of Replacement Theology (without even realizing it). Today's church has replaced Israel in tithing...

  1. They have replaced who is to tithe.
  2. They have replaced what is to be tithed.
  3. They have replaced where to tithe.
  4. They have replaced why they tithe.
  5. They have replaced when they tithe.

So, without even realizing what they're doing, they are practicing Replacement Theology by replacing Israel with the church in this regard.

11 minutes ago, John81 said:

I know of folks who have gone into great debt trying to follow these teachings;

Bro. John...I won't go into the whole story, but that was me and my family. I take responsibility for not having studied the truth myself, but I followed that teaching for a long time and never received the promised "blessings" or the "safety from the Devourer". I'm ashamed to say it now, but I put our family through a lot because we were "supposed to tithe no matter what".

I tithed willingly and with a good spirit. However, we just kept getting deeper and deeper in debt. Every time we turned around, we had problems arising that needed money. I kept thinking that it was a test...to see if I would trust God and continue to tithe. I'd keep tithing, and we'd just keep getting worse off. This wasn't a short-term thing either...it was over the course of years.

We never received that "miracle check in the mail", the "God will make your car last longer", and there was no reprieve from the medical problems in our family. It finally reached a breaking point. Either God lied about tithing, or something was wrong elsewhere. I finally decided to study about tithing...from God's word...not from what I'd been told. It took a while for me to accept what I found.

At one point, even after I had discovered what God's word says, I was still struggling. Tithing had become so ingrained into my belief. My wife asked me if we were still going to tithe the upcoming Sunday. We had again been slammed by several things needing money that week. I sat there...thinking about it...and though I had discovered the truth, I said, "We're still going to tithe." So, my family went without needs, and bills weren't paid. Even after discovering the truth, it took me a while to accept that what I had been told for so long, what had been preached as truth for so long, and what I had believed for so long...wasn't biblical.

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My wife and I were voted out of a church membership because of our teaching against the "scriptural tithe"

 

Funny thing,... What we taught concerning God's holy tithe was in perfect harmony with God's written Word.  It is their teaching that is against the "Scriptural tithe."

 

Sadly, so many are conditioned and brainwashed by the monetary tithe requirement lie, that they only see the tithe passages through the tainted lens of their denominational religious leaders.

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On ‎9‎/‎25‎/‎2015‎ ‎12‎:‎10‎:‎55‎, Standing Firm In Christ said:

It has been said by many that in the story of the widow who put her last two mites in the Temple Treasury was being commended by Jesus after she did so.

I am not so sure this was the case.  Notice:

Mark 12:38-44 And he said unto them in his doctrine, BEWARE OF THE SCRIBES, which love to go in long clothing, and love salutations in the marketplaces, And the chief seats in the synagogues, and the uppermost rooms at feasts: WHICH DEVOUR WIDOWS HOUSES, and for a pretence make long prayers: these shall receive greater damnation. And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

If one reads the text in context, (beginning at verse 39) one will see Jesus was warning of religious leaders who, "rob widow's houses".  Then, He sits against a wall across from the Treasury.  Lo and behold, a widow comes and drops all her living into the Treasury. 

What I see in that text is Jesus pointing out a destitute women has just been robbed, not that He was commending her.  Her money could have purchased some needed things that she lacked, but she put it in the Treasury?  Why? 

The Scribes, the LawMakers, had demanded her needed money.

I never got that from the passage. I always thought she was giving her all in faith; a cheerful giver, holding nothing back, truly trusting God to meet her needs, "worshipping in spirit and in truth". She had very little to give, but hers was MORE, because she gave all she had, the Bible says..

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6 hours ago, No Nicolaitans said:

While I'm thankful for Bro. Alan's testimony that he has never used Malachi 3:10 as a proof text for Christian tithing...and his testimony that he agrees that Christians aren't commanded to tithe...such a testimonial is few and far between. At least it is in my area.

In my area (and MANY other areas that I know of), pastors and teachers use any and every "tithing" passage to say that we are to tithe today. Not only that, they pull out God's command to Israel for "firstfruits" as proof that Christians are to tithe on their gross income. Their justification is that God wants your firstfruits. They haven't even studied enough to know that Israel's command for their firstfruits was completely seperate from the command(s) to tithe. God wanted Israel to offer their firstfruits AND their tithes.

Why do we get so upset when someone uses scripture to justify a false doctrine? Such as, Hagee's false doctrine about salvation for the Jews. We get upset about the false doctrine concerning losing salvation. We get upset about SDA's false doctrine about keeping the sabbath and other commands. We get upset about women pastors. We get upset about people who deny the Trinity. We get upset about the prosperity gospel. We get upset about people who promote hyper-grace. We get upset about people who put down the KJV. We get upset about every false doctrine out there (and rightly so)...but tithing gets a pass...even though it's a false doctrine for today's church.

If you want to see whether Christians are supposed to tithe today, it requires a little study...but it's very simple. Look for this...who, what, where, why, and when.

  1. Who was to tithe?
  2. What was to be tithed?
  3. Where were they to tithe?
  4. Why were they to tithe? (In other words, what were their tithes to be used for?)
  5. When were they to tithe?

You'll have to read more than just the verse where tithing is mentioned. Such as, Malachi 3:10...you'll need to read the entire book of Malachi to find out who God was saying was robbing him of tithes.

After you have discovered the answers to the who, what, where, why and when of tithing, look to see where God ever changed who, what, where, why, and when. I'll go ahead and give the answer. The who, what, where, why, and when has been changed...but not by God or his word.

Now look to see what the New Testament says about our giving...using the same who, what, where, why, and when. Also, don't be shocked when you realize the answers. Today's church has added a lot to what God's word says and "requires" about New Testament giving.

Now...with all of that said...I also believe that if a person desires to give 10% (or more) of their income, that's wonderful...as long as it comes from THEIR heart instead of a pastor or teacher saying we are supposed to, or God will send the Devourer to get his tithe anyway.

Which brings up another false doctrine often promoted about church members "tithing"...used to scare people into tithing.

God's gonna get his tithe one way or another!

Such as...

  1. You might end up in the hospital, and you'll have to pay your tithe then!
  2. Your car might break down, and you'll have to pay your tithe then!
  3. Your children might get sick, and you'll have to pay your tithe then!

It preaches really good! Except for the fact that God's not getting "your tithe" in such scenarios. The hospital is getting your money. The mechanic or parts store is getting your money. The doctor and pharmacy are getting your money...not God.

 

Surprisingly, those who make these threats about God will get the tithe don't believe that giving to the needy or missionaries counts as giving to God, they believe the tithe is only for the general fund of the church. In addition to giving to the church, I also give to the needy and missionaries. For the most part, I have NOT practiced the tithe but rather grace giving from my heart, and I have never had any financial problems, and none of these threats have happened to me. I am proof that these threats the Pastors make are not true.

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Fraudsters is the correct label and brother, ain't that the truth on helping the poor WITHIN your church and without as you witness.

The religious lost love those rules and these fraudsters love them rich tares. Love em so much, they ignore half the NT in their sermons refusing to lose them.

But that aint the only fraud going on in IFB churchs, OH NO SIR, I could write a big, angry, make you feel violent piece of some of these yahoos. But I want to practice charity more.

 

 

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On 11/18/2015, 10:06:21, Standing Firm In Christ said:

The widow was not tithing.  We can know this for several reasons.

 

1.  The Law was still in effect.  The Law would not end until Jesus' death on the cross.  Ephesians. 2:14-15; Colossians. 2:14

2.  The Law said that God's holy tithe was to be agricultural, not monetary.  Leviticus 27:30-33

3.  Even if the widow had a farm to tithe from, she would not have tithed to the Temple.  She would have taken her tithe to the Levites in the farming community instead.  Numbers 18:24-28; Nehemiah 10:37-38

4.  Only Temple staff tithed to the Temple.  Nehemiah 10:37-38

Did the poor have to give a tithe? I know there was a tithe for the poor. I recall that the tithe had to come out of the person's abundance and they had to own property. Also, there were cases that money could be tithed in place of agriculture although this probably wasn't one of them.

I understand the point you were making but I still see it as Jesus making a comparison between the poor widow's offering and the rich men who were giving and how it's quality over quantity that's important to God. Even after see was robbed she still gave to God.

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2 hours ago, Critical Mass said:

Did the poor have to give a tithe? I know there was a tithe for the poor. I recall that the tithe had to come out of the person's abundance and they had to own property. Also, there were cases that money could be tithed in place of agriculture although this probably wasn't one of them.

I understand the point you were making but I still see it as Jesus making a comparison between the poor widow's offering and the rich men who were giving and how it's quality over quantity that's important to God. Even after see was robbed she still gave to God.

Of the congregation, only landowners who had gardens, orchards, or livestock were required to tithe.  The Levites were required to tithe a tithe of the tithe.  Those who owned no land on which to farm could not tithe.  

The poor received tithes every third and sixth year in a seven year cycle.  Years  one, two, four and five in the cycle, they more than likely survived from the corners of farms, from begging alms, and from purchasing food with those alms.  According to Exodus, both rich and poor alike had money.  They were not necessarily considered to be poor because of lack of money, but because of lack of a provider and lack of property on which they could farm.

There were no cases where "money could be tithed."  Leviticus 27:31 makes provision for the crops tithe to be bought back if a farmer so chose to do.  However, that money he bought the tithe back with was not a tithe.  It was redemption money.  Deuteronomy 14:24-26 allowed the children of Israel to sell their Feast tithe if there was a chance of it spoiling on the journey to Jerusalem.  However, once they arrived in Jerusalem, they were to buy food and drink with that money and eat it themselves.   The Feast tithe did not go to the House of God.

According to Numbers 18:27-28 & Nehemiah 10:37-38, the children of Israel could not even tithe to the House of God even if they wanted to.  They tithed to the Levites in the farming communities instead.  Then, in turn, the Levites took a tithe of the tithe to the lHouse of God.  

Again, the widow's house was being robbed.  It was being robbed through the unjust scribes, who were demanding money that God never authorized.  Yes, the poor were required to give a half-shekel to the House of God yearly.  However, it was only certain of the poor that God said were required to observe this law,... males twenty years old or older..  (Exodus 30:13-15)

 

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On ‎11‎/‎20‎/‎2015‎ ‎4‎:‎16‎:‎29‎, Alan said:

Permit me say something about this issue of the Widow and her Mites. And, why some people give their tithes and offerings to the church.

Maybe, just maybe, the poor widow gave her two mites, all that she had, (not because it was commanded by the law and the Pharisees commanded we give the tithe), but  because she loved the Lord and His work and His Temple.

Maybe, just maybe, some people in our age, give tithes and offerings (not because it is commanded by the law and the Pharisees command we give a tithe), but because we love the Lord, we love His work, and we love his church.

I honestly believe that the Widow gave all she had because she loved God in heaven and wanted to show her gratitude towards not only towards God in heaven, but help His work, financially, on the earth.

The Lord Jesus commended the widow and her giving of her last two mites because she loved God, loved the Temple, and  loved the work of God. The interpretation that she gave her funds due to coercion, 'robbing,' intimidation, or some other ulterior method or reason, is a perversion of the words of the Lord Jesus Christ, and is not faithful to the words of the Lord Jesus. The interpretation of the widow being 'robbed' according to Mark 12:38-40 is not a correct interpretation. It is a incorrect, forced, and irresponsible interpretation.  "The legs of the lame are not equal: so is a parable in the mouth of fools." Proverbs 26:7

The reason why I, and a lot of other fine, godly saints, give oou tithes, offerings, and service to the Lord Jesus and to the local independent, fundamental, Bible believing church is because we love the Lord Jesus, the church, and the work of the Lord Jesus. It is not because we feel we are 'under the Law,' or 'taught wrongly' or some other insidious interpretation.

To say that I, or the saints who give willingly out of a heart of devotion and love, is through an intimidationof the fear of 'robbing' God, or some other reason of deceit, is a judmental interpretation of another person. That interpretation, and judgment is incorrect, slanderous, and is for the agenda of destroying the work of God through  false teaching.

The widow, and other saints, give out of a heart of love, devotion, sincerity, and one day, in the halls of heaven, the Lord Jesus, as He commended the poor, destitute widow, will say, "His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of the lord." Matthew 25:21

Alan

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 The text nowhere says the Lord was commending the widow.  Nor does the text say the widow gave out of a heart of love.    The text shows the widow was being robbed.

 

Jesus had just warned of those religious leaders.  Then, He goes and sits against the wall facing the Treasury.  There was no other purpose for doing so than to demonstrate how the widows were being robbed.

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It is not slanderous to say many are coerced to tithe their money through guilt or fear tactics.

 

I have been in many services in many different denominations that teach tithing through fear and guiltw.  The church that kicked me out was one such church.  There are also many Baptist videos on youtube, sermonaudio, sermonindex, et. Al.; that manipulate the congregations giving through those very same tactics.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Standing Firm In Christ said:

Again, the widow's house was being robbed.  It was being robbed through the unjust scribes, who were demanding money that God never authorized.  Yes, the poor were required to give a half-shekel to the House of God yearly.  However, it was only certain of the poor that God said were required to observe this law,... males twenty years old or older..  (Exodus 30:13-15)

Brother Robey,

I have refrained from engaging in this discussion to this point.  However, I do wish to express a few thoughts to your above comment.  Your comment reveals the two foundational premises for your interpretation of Mark 12:38-44 --

1.  Premise #1:  The scribes were robbing widows of their material welfare and housing.
2.  Premise #2:  The scribes were robbing widows by compelling them to give more than God required of them.

The first of these foundational premises is clearly supported by the Lord Jesus' statement in Mark 12:40.  However, the second of these foundational premises is not supported by any single statement of the passage.  Rather, it is assumed by your position.  Indeed, that is a fairly bold statement on my part; therefore, I express the challenge -- What single statement of Mark 12:38-44 specifically reveals that the scribes were robbing widows of their material welfare and housing specifically by compelling them to give more that the Lord God required of them?

36 minutes ago, Standing Firm In Christ said:

Jesus had just warned of those religious leaders.  Then, He goes and sits against the wall facing the Treasury.  There was no other purpose for doing so than to demonstrate how the widows were being robbed.

Actually, the purpose for the Lord Jesus in sitting across from the treasury is specifically stated in the passage.  It is NOT to see "how the widows were being robbed."  Rather, it is to see "how the people cast money into the treasury." (See Mark 12:41)

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1 hour ago, Pastor Scott Markle said:

Brother Robey,

I have refrained from engaging in this discussion to this point.  However, I do wish to express a few thoughts to your above comment.  Your comment reveals the two foundational premises for your interpretation of Mark 12:38-44 --

1.  Premise #1:  The scribes were robbing widows of their material welfare and housing.
2.  Premise #2:  The scribes were robbing widows by compelling them to give more than God required of them.

The first of these foundational premises is clearly supported by the Lord Jesus' statement in Mark 12:40.  However, the second of these foundational premises is not supported by any single statement of the passage.  Rather, it is assumed by your position.  Indeed, that is a fairly bold statement on my part; therefore, I express the challenge -- What single statement of Mark 12:38-44 specifically reveals that the scribes were robbing widows of their material welfare and housing specifically by compelling them to give more that the Lord God required of them?

Actually, the purpose for the Lord Jesus in sitting across from the treasury is specifically stated in the passage.  It is NOT to see "how the widows were being robbed."  Rather, it is to see "how the people cast money into the treasury." (See Mark 12:41)

Already answered.    The context shows that His statement "They rob widow's houses", His actions, 'watching the people," and his subsequent words, "she hath cast in more" all show that she was being robbed. 

It is hardly a bother for a rich person to put ten percent of their money into a collection plate or box.  However, for the poor to put ten percent in that plate or box, it is taking away from needs,... it is robbing them.  Milk and bread costs the same for rich and poor alike.  A rich household that has five family members who drink a glass of milk a day each runs out of milk on the same day as the poor family with five children who each drink a glass of milk a day. 

The difference being, the rich has the money to purchase another gallon, so the giving of ten percent doesn't take away from his family needs.   The poor, on the other hand,  may not get another gallon until their next welfare check comes in. (Mother raising five of us on Social Security and Dad's pension, I know firsthand how the ten percent she gave each month caused us to lack in many needful things)

The widow was being robbed.

For Alan,

Here is one such video where the congregation is told they are guilty of robbing God and they are cursed if they don't tithe...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jPQo_W2qUG8&feature=youtu.be

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24 minutes ago, Standing Firm In Christ said:

Already answered.    The context shows that His statement "They rob widow's houses", His actions, 'watching the people," and his subsequent words, "she hath cast in more" all show that she was being robbed. 

Except that the passage does NOT say -- "which devour widows' houses by compelling them to give money."  In fact, the passage does not at all reveal the method by which the scribes "devoured" the widows' houses.  The method of "compelling them to give money" is your assumption, not the passage's revelation.

Except that the passage does NOT say -- "and beheld how the people were compelled to cast money into the treasury."  In fact, the passage simply indicates our Lord's purpose to watch "how" they were casting in their money, without once indicating that they were doing so because they were compelled in some way to do so.

Except that the passage does NOT say -- "that this poor widow hath been compelled to cast more in, than all they which have been compelled to cast into the treasury."  The idea of compulsion to give is not found in a single word of Mark 12:41-44.  Rather, this idea of compulsion is your assumption, not the passage's revelation.

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