Let us start with another look at the “tithing scripture” often used in churches. It is often quoted at a per-determined time in a church service, with some kind of commentary or sermonette, urging people to give money into that church. The oft-quoted portion of the third chapter of Malachi is used. We shall see this, but the whole chapter in its entirety should be read as it reveals what God was really saying to His people. Let us break it down a little.
“Look! I am sending my messenger to clear the way before me; and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple. Yes, the messenger of the covenant, in whom you take such delight— look! Here he comes,” says Adonai-Tzva’ot. Malachi 3:1
This spoke of Elijah and that it alluded to John the Baptist. The prophecy of Isaiah chapter 40 also has such connotations, so if this passage is referring to the ministry of John, then we need to consider all of what Malachi said in its entirety.
John preached to God’s covenant people. Isaiah 40 also spoke to God’s people, not to the heathen. Everything related to God’s covenant people and if we consider ourselves to be God’s people (which we are), we must take heed to the message in its entirety and not to selected “favorite” verses or portions thereof.
Isaiah’s prophesy was in essence telling God’s people to get their collective acts together. So too was John’s message and if we go back further, this was what Elijah was doing!
The leaders of God’s covenant people had erred! They had forgotten the terms and conditions of the covenant and had strayed off the original pattern!
It sounds all too familiar to me. If we are truly honest with ourselves, the church has strayed off the original pattern and whilst this sounds old hat and perhaps boring to you, take a look around you.
Malachi was speaking to God’s people. Look at what he said next-
But who can endure the day when he comes? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire, like the soapmaker’s lye. He will sit, testing and purifying the silver; he will purify the sons of Levi, refining them like gold and silver, so that they can bring offerings to Adonai uprightly.
Then the offering of Y’hudah and Yerushalayim will be pleasing to Adonai, as it was in the days of old, as in years gone by. Malachi 2:3-4
He was speaking to the sons of Levi and Moses came from Levi!
Levi’s heirs carried the Ark of the Covenant. No one else could even touch it! The rod of Aaron, who came from Levi blossomed in that ark (Numbers 18). The sons of Levi ministered to the Lord.
We’re talking of such things as the priesthood and inheritance, but we blood washed redeemed of the Lord are priests to the Lord also.
Through this prophet, God said that He would refine and purify such people—the priests—so that they could bring offerings to the Lord in the proper manner.
There is a right way and a wrong way to offer something to God that pleases Him as it once did. If something pleased Him before, we need to know what that was. Turn with me then to Deuteronomy.
Here are the laws and rulings you are to observe and obey in the land Adonai, the God of your ancestors, has given you to possess as long as you live on earth. You must destroy all the places where the nations you are dispossessing served their gods, whether on high mountains, on hills, or under some leafy tree. Break down their altars, smash their standing-stones to pieces, burn up their sacred poles completely and cut down the carved images of their gods. Exterminate their name from that place. Deuteronomy 12:1-3
It started with separation from the world system and uninhibited dedication to God. We can’t treat God any old way we want.
But you are not to treat Adonai your God this way. Rather, you are to come to the place where Adonai your God will put his name. He will choose it from all your tribes; and you will seek out that place, which is where he will live, and go there. Deuteronomy 12:4-5
God said that His people had to go to a specific place—the place that He chose where He would place His name.
He further said that His people were obliged to seek out that place.
We are not living in Israel thousands of years ago, but we are God’s people nevertheless and similar principles are still involved.
This introduces some issues for us that we must resolve and we need to ask some questions like, “Where do we worship?” “Is it our local church, or somewhere convenient to us?”
“Do we go because the music is great, or we like the way the pastor dresses and says the nice things that tickle our ears?” Many people do and, unfortunately church attendance is little different to going to a club of some kind where an hour or two is spent together before returning to one’s normal life for the rest of the week.
The answer really is to go where God tells us to go.
Sometimes He might instruct you to go to a place you do not like and doing that is not always easy.
The important point to remember is that obedience is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fat of rams!
If That’s the place He wants you to be, go there and keep going there until He says otherwise. He won’t tell you to go to some weird place and expose you to risk.
He is always working on something and one thing leads to the next.
It is There—at the place that He chose, that the people were to bring their offerings.
You will bring there your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, your tenths [that you set aside for Adonai], the offerings that you give, the offerings you have vowed, your voluntary offerings, and the firstborn of your cattle and sheep. Deuteronomy 12:6-7
Notice that God said tenths. To be specific, it is the tenths that the people deliberately set aside for the Lord. That’s the tithe!
The Hebrew word is maʿaśēr that we first see in Leviticus chapter 27.
The whole chapter talks about special offerings to the Lord and verse 30 specifies the tithe of the land, be it seed of the land or fruit of the tree, stating that it is holy to the Lord.
God told the people what to do and how to go about it.
It spoke of making an estimation of the worth of the offering and once the decision was made, not to change your mind.
It then spoke of what happened in the Year of Jubilee and in the year of Jubilee—everything changed. Debts were canceled. Slaves were freed and a whole new chapter in one’s life commenced.
If you look at it, most humans would only experience one or possibly two Jubilees in their lifetime. Shemittah came in our year of 2015.
The last one would have been around 1965! I was not saved then (I was born again on September 1st, 1968)! Think of the implications. We’ve all just started a new jubilee season and we may only have one Jubilee in our lifetime.
Think again of the implications.
Verse 26 gives an indication of what the tithe is all about.
The first...belongs to God!
God further instructed-
There you will eat in the presence of Adonai your God; and you will rejoice over everything you set out to do, you and your households, in which Adonai your God has blessed you. You will not do things the way we do them here today, where everyone does whatever in his own opinion seems right; because you haven’t yet arrived at the rest and inheritance which Adonai your God is giving you. Deuteronomy 12:7-10
The inference is, “don’t do whatever you want—Do what I say! Do it when I say and how I tell you—because you have not arrived there yet! You haven’t received your inheritance yet.”
If you read on yourself, you will see that God then said that once they crossed the Jordan River and took possession of their inheritance and had rest from their enemies and the like, they were to rejoice in the Lord, bring their offerings (including the tithe) and eat together in a thanksgiving meal.
On the very day they crossed Jordan into their Promised Land, the manna ceased.
God had started something new.
Surely there has to be a message in that to us.
This way, provision was made for the widow, the orphan, the stranger living in their midst and for the Levite. The Levites did not receive an inheritance as everyone else did. Their inheritance was in essence, their ministry.
He told them not to muzzle the ox that treads out the corn and Paul referred to this in 1 Corinthians 9.
Don’t you realize that those who work in the temple get their meals from the offerings brought to the temple? And those who serve at the altar get a share of the sacrificial offerings.
In the same way, the Lord ordered that those who preach the Good News should be supported by those who benefit from it. 1 Corinthians 9:13-14
We’re now starting to see what the tithe is really about.
Sadly, things degenerated over the years and the priests had forgotten what God had instructed them and this is what Malachi had said.
“See, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. Then the Lord you seek will suddenly come to His temple, the Messenger of the covenant you desire—see, He is coming,” says the LORD of Hosts. But who can endure the day of His coming? And who will be able to stand when He appears? For He will be like a refiner’s fire and like cleansing lye. He will be like a refiner and purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver. Then they will present offerings to the LORD in righteousness.
And the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will please the LORD as in days of old and years gone by.
“I will come to you in judgment, and I will be ready to witness against sorcerers and adulterers; against those who swear falsely; against those who oppress the widow and the fatherless, and cheat the wage earner; and against those who deny justice to the foreigner. They do not fear Me,” says the LORD of Hosts.
“Because I, Yahweh, have not changed, you descendants of Jacob have not been destroyed. Malachi 3:1-6
God announced that He was going to send His messenger before Him to prepare the way for His coming and in the process was going to refine the priests! John came with a blunt message aimed right at the religious leaders. Jesus did likewise and they didn’t like it. This principle is still valid today and it is possible that such messages must be brought to the religious leaders of our day—and they will not like it!
- The leadership was oppressing the widows and the fatherless.
- Hard working families were being cheated.
- Justice was being denied
- Reverential fear of the Lord had disappeared.
Religious observances, traditions of men, selfish greed, manipulation, domination and control had replaced what God wanted for His people and He told them (the religious leaders) that they were robbing him.
They had reached the point in life when they became self centered, unreachable, egotistical and so on. Some of them thought serving God was pointless. “Why bother? God doesn’t answer my prayers! He doesn’t care about me! I’ll look after my own affairs and do things my way” I will create a substitute religion that pleases me.” They also became creatures of (religious) habit. Those were the kinds of attitudes the religious leaders had adopted and sadly, many ordinary people were dragged down with them. Does anything sound even slightly familiar?
If you study it out, the tithe was produce of some kind. The tithe was food!
The concept was that God told the people where they had to go for worship and bring their tithe there for consumption in worship and for distribution to others. If it was not possible for them to take their produce to that stated location, they could sell their produce, take the money with them and purchase what they wanted when they got there—and there eat it before the Lord!
It really had little to do with money...as such!
We are often told to bring the tithes to the local church, likening it to the storehouse. In some translations, God said to bring the Full Tenth into the storehouse. Most versions (not all) say that but they all say that it was to ensure that there would be food (or meat) there.
What is this “full tenth” (full tithe)? The Hebrew word is kōl.
The word in itself means literally all or everything, but as usual many other derivatives speak volumes.
It talks of perfection! It talks about being gorgeous. It speaks about all sorts of armor. It also says it means all kinds of things.
If it relates somehow to armor, then the action of tithing offers some kind of protection and this is consistent with what God said about rebuking the devourer so that he would not destroy your substance.
The question remains, “What is the storehouse?”
Well, it “could” be the local church today, but is it...really? We’re still dealing with Israel, remember?
The Hebrew word bayît means a house, a home, a palace, a family, an inward place and a temple. Derivatives give us the familiar names of Bethel and Bethlehem (that means house of bread).
God calls bayît His house. We’re bringing it to God in His House! This house does not only or always mean a church, because we too are His house, or the temple of the Holy Spirit.
The storehouse is the place where food is kept to distribute to the people and we know that Joseph build storehouses in Egypt to feed the people.
In Malachi, God told them to bring this tithe into His House to provide food (literally meaning meat) for His people. The Hebrew word for meat is ṭerep. The primary meaning of this root is “to seize a creature with predaciousness, tear the flesh, and consume it.”
It is talking about prey and food.
Modern teaching says that the storehouse is the local church, but this might not always be correct.
Modern teaching says that the local church is where we are fed the meat of the word. To a certain extent, that might be true, but if there is no real sound teaching there and no impartation of revelation from the word, the people are not being fed the meat of the word.
The New Testament itself teaches us that we must progress from the baby stage in our belief and walk with God to maturity. See 1Peter 2:2.
Hebrews chapter 5 talks about the excellency of Jesus’ priesthood mentioning Melchizedek. Abraham gave him tithes and we shall look at this shortly, but let us see what is said about maturity and meat-
There is much more we would like to say about this, but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen.
You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others. Instead, you need someone to teach you again the basic things about God’s word. You are like babies who need milk and cannot eat solid food.
For someone who lives on milk is still an infant and doesn’t know how to do what is right.
Solid food is for those who are mature, who through training have the skill to recognize the difference between right and wrong. Hebrews 5:11-14.
In the local church, regardless of denomination, if there is no sound teaching, the meat in mine house cannot be what they say it means.
The storehouse cannot be the church and the meat in the house cannot be the word of God. If this is so, then why throw your hard earned money away into something lifeless? Where is the harvest? Where is the 30-60-100 fold return and similar matters Jesus taught on? We have assumed it relates to money, but if we look more closely into where the Lord said it, such as in Mark chapter four, the parable there is about the word of God! Jesus said so!
What constitutes sound teaching must therefore be determined.
If we look at Jesus as our role model, He taught in such a way that it had profound affects on the hearers. His words convicted. His words gave hope. His words inspired and His words produced results. People’s lives were changed.
When we attend church, we should come expecting fellowship and companionship; we should come to worship God corporately; to partake of communion as often as possible to commemorate Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection and in anticipation of His return and we should leave there better off than when we arrived.
Pause for a moment and think of how often you leave a church and can remember the message and how it impacted your life.
For a short period of time, we are treated to songs and music of varying kinds, that we can enjoy. Music should set the stage for people to come into God’s presence, but all too often the music ministry is more of a show, or a form of entertainment and the focal point of the church. I am a musician and love most forms of music (I used to play banjo and pedal steel guitar regularly) and know at first hand the value of music. I also know that once the anointing hits, the music takes on a completely different aspect.
Sometimes we felt that we could cut the air with a knife as the awesome presence of God came in.
On many occasions, everything else became secondary and we often hit the deck in reverence. Today, it seems more nightclub entertainment and preaching sound biblical life changing messages is only part of the program.
The point I want to make is that the preaching of the word is the objective to lift the level of faith, inspire and bless the people and draw us close to God.
We can thus walk in sick, sad and disgusted and leave totally changed, but sadly, many leave the same way.
Meat in the Father’s house was literal food that can or should be the same today. Conditions have changed today of course in our modern society, but the principles have not changed. We can apply this meat to both literal food and good preaching. We should strive for excellence and have the sound, solid teaching that Jesus gave and that...is the meat of the word.
There is a vast difference between giving an ear-tickling sermon and imparting life-changing and faith producing revelation. After all, faith cometh by hearing the word of God (see Romans 10:17).
I put it to you that if this is not the kind of thing that happens, then the phrase saying you should bring the tithes to the local church because that is where the pastor feeds you might not be correct. Does He feed like that?
What then is the tithe today? Does it still apply? Are we obliged to give?
If we are supposed to tithe, then we need to know how much, how we do it and when.
By way of answer I will touch on what Abraham did when he met Melchizedek.
In Genesis 14, Lot was taken prisoner in a war. Abraham rescued him and took plunder. Two things happened. Firstly, Melchizedek came and produced bread and wine (a type of our communion today).
Malki-Tzedek king of Shalem brought out bread and wine. He was cohen of El ‘Elyon [God Most High], so he blessed him with these words: “Blessed be Avram by El ‘Elyon, maker of heaven of earth. and blessed be El ‘Elyon, who handed your enemies over to you.” Avram gave him a tenth of everything. Genesis 14:18-20
That was a tithe.
The very next thing that happened was that the king of Sodom came asking for the people. He did not want their money.
The battle is for the minds and wills of the people.
One of the most powerful struggles we have is over “stuff”. It is the relative value we place on things. God wants us to put Him first and one way to do that is by giving Him the first-fruits of our substance. It represents what we are and what we do. As I said before, God does not need the stuff we cling onto.
He wants our hearts, but we fight over issues. Whilst the battle is over our minds and hearts, the expressions of what is inside us, usually comes out in the way we handle “things”, or money.
Little wonder there is so much controversy over tithing.
Not long after these events, God cut the covenant with Abraham in Genesis 15. This is very powerful. I hope you see how closely linked these two events are.
Hebrews 6 and 7 reveals that God swore that oath to Abram by Himself, because there was no greater. It shows that men sware by the greater and shows us that what Abraham and Melchizedek did was enacting a future function in the church with Jesus being our Great High Priest—forever!
This tithe was thus symbolic, but if you look carefully you will not see anywhere where Jesus told us to tithe! He did however mention tithes in Matthew 23 and Luke 11 when He rebuked the religious leaders for their wrong approach to the tithe.
Paul never mentioned it at all!
Why then do we place so much emphasis on tithing in the church? It is only mentioned in Hebrews when speaking of Melchizedek.
Avram gave him a tenth of everything. For every cohen gadol taken from among men is appointed to act on people’s behalf with regard to things concerning God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He can deal gently with the ignorant and with those who go astray, since he too is subject to weakness. Also, because of this weakness, he has to offer sacrifices for his own sins, as well as those of the people. And no one takes this honor upon himself, rather, he is called by God, just as Aharon was.
So neither did the Messiah glorify himself to become cohen gadol; rather, it was the One who said to him,
“You are my Son; today I have become your Father.”
Also, as he says in another place, “You are a cohen forever, to be compared with Malki-Tzedek.”
During Yeshua’s life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions, crying aloud and shedding tears, to the One who had the power to deliver him from death; and he was heard because of his godliness.
Even though he was the Son, he learned obedience through his sufferings. And after he had been brought to the goal, he became the source of eternal deliverance to all who obey him, since he had been proclaimed by God as a cohen gadol to be compared with Malki-Tzedek.
The Old Testament Priesthood served its purpose and was fulfilled in Jesus.
He did not abolish The Law, but fulfilled it. No one else could.
We could therefore say that tithing as it was in the Old Testament, no longer applies to us today—but the spirit of it continues. In fact is taken to a higher level.
The Law said not to commit adultery, but Jesus said not to even think of it.
The Law told us not to kill, but Jesus took it to that higher level by telling us our hatred of a brother is tantamount to committing murder. If anything, we have a greater obligation today because every one of us are able ministers of the New Testament as Paul explained in 2 Corinthians 3. Here he said that it is not of the letter (of the Law) but of the Spirit. The letter kills, but the spirit produces life.
We must look at the issues of church government, leadership, worship, service and all the various ordinances, including tithes and offerings in this light.
There really should not be any debate, but on the practical level, how do we go about it? Again, Paul comes to the rescue.
Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop.
You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.”
And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.
As the Scriptures say, “They share freely and give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will be remembered forever.”
For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.
Yes, you will be enriched in every way so that you can always be generous. And when we take your gifts to those who need them, they will thank God.
So two good things will result from this ministry of giving—the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God.
As a result of your ministry, they will give glory to God. For your generosity to them and to all believers will prove that you are obedient to the Good News of Christ. And they will pray for you with deep affection because of the overflowing grace God has given to you.
Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words! 2 Corinthians 9:6-15
I hope the way I emphasized that explains things. I never saw a reference to 10% there, but I did see much mention of unbridled generosity by a willing heart and helping others that led to thanksgiving to God whilst blessing Him and others in the process.
It is a commitment. It is a way of life. It is part of the experience of every believer.
The issues are how, where and when we do it. Again, there are many schools of thought that, on analysis, make no sense.
In the Old Testament, people were obliged by God’s Law to deliberately set the tenth of their substance aside for God. That was the very first thing they did. If it was a herd of sheep, the shepherd made the sheep go past him (under his shepherd’s rod) and counted. The first 10% was God’s and that was it! If it was corn, then the first of the harvest belonged to God. The farmer could do what he wanted after that.
If they had to go to a distant city that God chose and the crop was too much to take, then they could sell it, go there and buy what they wanted to eat! That was tithing! They tithe was food that was consumed as an act of worship.
What we need to remember is that it was not an option. The tithe belonged to God. Even if it never produced a “return”, it was His! The “return” came from the freewill offering.
“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, and let there be food in My house. And please prove Me in this,” said יהוה of hosts, “whether I do not open for you the windows of the heavens, and shall pour out for you boundless blessing!
“And I shall rebuke the devourer for you, so that it does not destroy the fruit of your ground, nor does the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field,” said יהוה of hosts.
The process was to-
- Bring the tithe to the storehouse so that there would be literal food in God’s house
- Put God to the test later, when He would open the windows of the heavens (plural).
The Hebrew word to consider is shāmayim and it refers to heaven as in God’s abode and also to heaven as in the skies (from which comes rain).
He said that He would then pour out boundless blessing and this blessing referred to their whole way of life. Everything was based on the land—their crops, cattle, water—everything. God promised to ensure that the insects and plagues, droughts and natural disasters that destroyed their crops and thus their lifestyles would not affect them. When they tithed; their crops flourished. When their crops flourished they had a harvest, but they still had to do the work involved in farming!
The actual tithe did nothing, because it was God’’s anyhow!
All we do is give God back what already belongs to Him.
It was the resulting blessing of God that followed offerings that produced the blessing.
It sounds the same perhaps, but it is not.
It is like the manna that fell. God sent it, but they had to collect it. This is what my friend of years ago was not taught. We were told that you had to give your tithe to the church.
We were led to believe that the tithe itself would somehow mysteriously be multiplied and dollars would fall out of the sky and land in our laps.The pastors never told us that God would rebuke the devourer in his life and he never expected the favor of God to come on his life as a way of life, but the pastors received their stipends and we paid their bills.
Things are different today to the way they were in the Old Testament.
Most of us have a job and payday comes regularly without us having to exercise our faith. We sign on, do our work, sign off, go home and do whatever we do. The pay is (usually) there automatically.
God’s laws however do not change. The law of gravity still works even if you do not believe it or understand it.
The law of seed-time and harvest still works, because God made a promise. He told Noah in Genesis 8:20-22 that for as long as this planet existed, seed-time and harvest, the seasons, daytime and night time would exist.
If you look at His promise it is seed—then time—then harvest.
It does not always happen overnight because everything has its season.
Therefore when payday arrives, the principle remains the same and we really do not have to exercise any faith at all. The first thing we were told to do was to deliberately set aside one tenth of that pay packet and give it to the church, but it’s God’s—not the pastor’s or the church although it usually goes there.
It is the spirit of the word that counts and not the letter of the Law.
People split hairs asking if we should tithe in the net or the gross and if one has to ask such questions, I suspect their hearts are not really in it. I think of Jesus’ words-
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. Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. Matthew 23:23-24
People often say that they have nothing to tithe or can’t afford to tithe, but in reality, we cannot afford not to, if God does what He said He would do.
If God said He would rebuke the devourer for your sake when you tithe, it implies that this will not happen if you do not tithe. It is not that God curses a thing. He does not do that. He merely takes His hand off because the individual has made a choice that God will honor. At such time the thief comes to steal , kill and destroy. It’s just a matter of time before it all manifests.
With a regular income from a permanent job, we tend to forget this, but things can and do change.
I know from first hand experience this is real from what happened in my secular employment.
Seemingly overnight, I went from being one of the executive technical managers in Telstra (Australia’s national telecommunications provider) as the National Administrator of part of the process that computerized Australia’s telephone exchange network and the introduction of optical fibre systems to being unemployed. It is called redundancy.
This was part of God’s plan of course so I could get to where I am now, but for a while, things were difficult. I kept tithing but nothing happened and it made me start asking the Lord questions.
The Lord started answering me in a way I had not expected. He told me to stop tithing in the way I had been doing and to give only as He instructed. He told me what to give, to whom, how and when.
He instructed my wife and I to sell our Pajero car and give the proceeds to two ministries. We had no transport for 4 months until someone took us shopping and bought us a Mitsubishi Magna. It has since been replaced under similarly amazing circumstances.
I gave a Dell computer away because He asked me to and someone bought a new iMac and Macbook Pro computer. They were then sowed and I now have new systems. The Apple company never gives things away, but the Lord told me to go to one of their stores to buy a new iPad and I came home with a top of the range iPad for the price of an entry level one. How did that work? I don’t know.
All I did was to do what He told me and I did it when He told me to do it.
This was what happened from my giving—and my obedience to His instructions—but not from my tithe!
Until I started to give as, where and when the Lord told us, it seemed that tithing did not work! We had been programmed into believing that the tithe automatically produced a 30, 60 or 100-fold return and it is not like that.
We had wanted to relocate for a long time and getting nowhere until the Lord told us to sow a seed—on top of our tithe. In a very short time, a large cheque came in the mail and we were able to move.
It happened so fast, we thought we were dreaming. The favor of God was on us and everything we did was blessed.
We were able to move, buy a brand new car, get ourselves set up into a new life and living better that we ever have, because we listened to the Lord’s voice and did what he told us to do—from our giving and not our tithe.
Our new lifestyle is a direct result of our obedience to what God told us to do.
Have you ever experienced a series of mishaps that make no sense and seem to go from one problem to another? The kids get toothache and you need urgent dental treatment for them and no sooner have you got that fixed up, the motor in your car breaks down. That is repaired then the hot water system starts leaking and needs replacing, then the Microwave fails and then something else fails. You no sooner get over one thing when another arrives. If this is the kind of thing that is happening, then it could be possible that the devourer is having a field day with you. Check your finances! I did not ask you if you were tithing! I am asking you if you are doing what the Lord has been telling you to do.
As for having nothing, what does one do if someone has no job and thus no income? Some countries are extremely poor with no infrastructure, social security and healthcare facilities and the like, so what does a Christian do?
All that I can say is that God’s word works for all and His word says that He gives seed to sowers. Someone in a remote native village somewhere can get seed to sow, even if it is one banana off a bunch or a button off his shirt.
It is the commitment and the exercise of one’s faith that is important.
God can show everyone what to do and how to do it.
A pastor told me of the time he visited Haiti, that had the reputation of being the poorest nation on earth and had suffered a major national disaster. Poverty was everywhere.
He saw a large white house in the middle of a well kept estate behind security fences. He asked his guide about the building and was told that it was the embassy of his own country.
The point he made was that despite living in the middle of that foreign country, the ambassador’s government supplied all of the ambassador’s needs. If the embassy needed supplies, the government back home provided all the needs in the midst of all that poverty. They lived in the middle of a foreign land, but did not have to live under the same conditions as the citizens.
The lesson learned is that we belong to a different Kingdom and it is not of this world. It is not restricted to the prevailing conditions of the natural world.
We are ambassadors of Christ, so our headquarters is located where He is located. He is our source, not our local environment, so when we have a need, we have the right and the authority to make withdrawals from our heavenly bank account.
It might not always be easy and we might not always understand what is happening behind the scenes, so we turn to God’s word and our faith.
God gives seed to seed sowers. Conversely, if you do not sow, He does not give seed and if you do not sow, you will not reap, but to whom, how and where do we sow?
This now brings us to the leading question-