While millions try to do it "my way" there is a time-tested way, "God's way" that brings untold blessings.
How can you know that the God of creation will be “on your side” in the traumatic times just ahead? How can you be sure that He will bless your financial situation and your family as the end of this society approaches? You need to know!
All around us, we can see that our society is changing in dramatic fashion! Never have there been so many changes happening so quickly as in recent years. Same-sex marriage—unthinkable in polite discussion just a few years ago—is increasingly accepted as the “law of the land.” Violence in our cities seems to be taken as routine, and many even blame the law-enforcement authorities rather than the criminals. Many young people feel that there are no job opportunities for them, though they have amassed tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt.
Our society is certainly in turmoil. Many of our forefathers here in America, Canada and Britain would “turn over in their graves” if they could suddenly come alive and witness what our political and religious leaders have been allowing and even “pushing” to happen.
We have the constant refrain of so-called “Christian” ministers jumping on the homosexual bandwagon and trying to put a guilt trip on those who oppose some of the vilest behavior described or condemned in the entire Bible. We see that countless millions of young people in our nations are “living together” without benefit of marriage. Hollywood seems to enjoy pushing this approach—as the institution of marriage crumbles, and our society begins to come apart along with this and other dangerous changes. Meanwhile, the Ebola virus is spreading. Russia is flying jet aircraft that threaten NATO airspace, and is helping implement a virtual “invasion” of parts of Ukraine as the United States and NATO do essentially nothing. And all over the world we see political and military “upsets” happening at an unusual rate.
If you believe or even partially understand the Bible, you can grasp that the Eternal God must intervene and begin to stop this if He acts according to the statements in His own inspired Word, the Holy Bible. The eternal God is certainly “in charge” of world events. The inspired Word of God tells us: “The Lord brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; He makes the plans of the peoples of no effect. The counsel of the Lord stands forever, the plans of His heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He has chosen as His own inheritance” (Psalm 33:10–12).
Yes, the counsel of the Lord “stands forever.” For God is real. He will bring about those things that He has said. He will bless those who genuinely trust and obey Him!
Again, the God that gives us life and breath tells us, “Look to Me, and be saved, all you ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself; the word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, that to Me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall take an oath” (Isaiah 45:22–23).
Truly, there is “no other” God who has the power and the will to guide world events and to bless those who truly serve Him. Frankly, my friends, that is the starting point of any discussion about the important issues of life. And all of us need to fully realize this as we consider the future safety—both physically and financially—of ourselves, our families and loved ones.
We know that we want to receive God’s blessings as generously as He will give them. But does He require anything of us? In discussing the need for true Christians to “give generously,” Almighty God states: “But this I say: he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully” (2 Corinthians 9:6). Then, God lets us know that He is “in charge” and able to bless those who do give generously. For He states in concluding this section of scripture, “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (v. 8). So God is “able” to give us the “breaks” and give us everything we need even in times of trouble or national upsets, weather upsets, disease epidemics or whatever. For He is God!
Our great God, the God of creation, tells us repeatedly in the Bible that He “owns” everything. And that if we pay Him a “tithe” of our income, we are simply giving back to Him what is His. We are showing that we truly “fear” Him, honor Him and love Him. We are willing to do as He says. Most of you subscribers to Tomorrow’s World know that God has given us an understanding of prophetic events far beyond what the average person or even minister begins to grasp. God is using us in this Work to get His message to the world in a more powerful way year by year. So we would be remiss if we did not remind you, occasionally, of God’s direct instruction ontithing and the blessings you will receive if you are willing to obey your Creator and “seek first” the Kingdom of God above all else—even in financial ways!
What is the “mind of God” regarding our financial responsibility to the Creator who gives us life and breath? What does God clearly reveal in His inspired Word? After describing the events regarding Israel’s exodus from Egypt and the trials and tests and punishments God administered to ancient Israel, the Apostle Paul wrote, “Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come” (1 Corinthians 10:11).
One of the primary examples given in the entire Old Testament is the example of Abraham. For Abraham is called “the father of all those who believe” (Romans 4:11). He is also called three different times, “the friend of God” (James 2:23; 2 Chronicles 20:7; Isaiah 41:8). Through Abraham’s constant obedience to God (Genesis 26:5), Abraham is used as an example of God’s own character in a way no other man has been in the Bible (Genesis 22).
So we should certainly want to follow Abraham’s example!
Though Abraham was truly a great man, an even greater Personage is introduced in Genesis 14:18–20: “Melchizedek,” King of Salem. This great Personality is described in Hebrews 7:1–3: “For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all, first being translated ‘king of righteousness,’ and then also king of Salem, meaning ‘king of peace,’ without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, remains a priest continually.”
As you read this chapter carefully, it becomes obvious that Melchizedek was not a man, but was actually the Personality who became Jesus Christ Himself in the New Testament! And God tells us in verse 9, “Even Levi, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, so to speak.”
This powerful example of Abraham—the “father of the faithful”—paying tithes to Melchizedek ought to make any God-fearing person want to follow the example of the father of the faithful—if that person wants to be truly faithful to his Creator! And, as is indicated in Hebrews 7:9, it is not merely a matter of “giving” a tithe to God—for Levi “paid” tithes through Abraham. The original example tells us that Abraham was aware that God was “possessor of heaven and earth.” God is our Creator, our Sustainer and our Provider. He makes it possible for us to breathe the air that we breathe, drink the water that we drink and eat the food that we eat. Most human beings simply do not think about that! But God—through His inspired Word—makes it clear that we owe Him a tithe—a “tenth”—of our increase. For He is our ultimate “Landlord” and our God.
Abraham’s wonderful example cannot be refuted by those who would falsely claim that tithing was simply part of the “Law of Moses”! For Moses was not even born when Abraham set us the example of tithing! Later, we find that the patriarch Jacob also indicated that he would give a “tenth”—a tithe—to God (Genesis 28:22).
In Genesis 26:3–5, we find the story of how God spoke to Isaac and described how He had given Abraham awesome blessings of national prosperity and millions of descendants. Why? “Because Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.” Certainly tithing was one of these statutes (Leviticus 26:46; 27:30). So Abraham was simply obeying commandments and statutes that God had already revealed long before Moses was ever heard of! And so, Abraham became the “friend of God!”
Near the end of the Old Testament, in the book of Malachi—a sort of “bridge book” that leads right over into the New Testament—God told our forefathers, “For I am the Lord, I do not change” (Malachi 3:6). God has certain basic commandments and statutes that last forever for human beings. Tithing is certainly one of these. For the inspired instruction continues, “‘“Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we robbed You?’ In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you have robbed Me, even this whole nation. Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,” says the Lord of hosts, ‘If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it’” (vv. 8–10).
Because our human nature is basically selfish, and because God is not “real” to most people, most human beings and even most ministers come up with excuses as to why we supposedly do not need to tithe. Why? The Bible answers: “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be” (Romans 8:7). Carnal people seem naturally to resent the idea of a powerful God, who has a “law,” telling them what to do!
So the typical arguments against tithing usually acknowledge that tithing was a law under the Old Testament, but that it is not required in the New Testament. Yet, Jesus Christ Himself clearly explained, “Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:19). Therefore, as should be obvious for all who have eyes to see, Jesus specifically indicates that His true disciples are to obey even the “least” of God’s commandments!
But did Jesus Himself clearly indicate that tithing was still to be done?
Yes! He did. Notice His words: “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone” (Matthew 23:23). Here, Jesus shows that He expects those who practice love, justice, mercy and faith also to practice tithing! Any honest teacher of grammar—if it were any other topic—would agree that Christ is telling us not to leave tithing out! We must not leave tithing “undone”!
My friends, Jesus Christ said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God’” (Luke 4:4). So it should be very clear to any true Christian that we really should obey what God clearly states in His inspired Word! And if you understand the whole tenor of dozens of statements in the Bible, you can understand that God does not appreciate people who are always trying to “get around” what He asks us to do! Yet, He will bless us, protect us and guide our lives for good if we sincerely seek His will and try to let Christ live within us through the Holy Spirit. In fact, that is the best one verse definition of a true Christian in the Bible. For the Apostle Paul was inspired to write: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20, KJV).
If Christ truly lives within us through the Holy Spirit then we will obviously be looking for ways to honor God, obey God and do everything we can to further the Work of God preparing for the coming glorious Kingdom of God soon to be set up on this earth. We will “want” to be involved in what Christ is doing. We will deeply desire for Christ to live His life within us. And we will “seek” God and Christ in every way we can so we will come to have the “mind of God” in every way and walk with Him now and forever.
As in many areas of the true Christian life, tithing involves our willingness to genuinely trust in the God who gives us life and breath. Over and over in the Bible, God indicates that He will richly bless those who truly love Him and trust in Him. Among scores of similar scriptures, notice what God inspired King David—the man after God’s own heart—to tell us in Psalm 37:3–5: “Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass.”
My friends, we are definitely at the end of an age. As the events swirling around us indicate, God is now beginning to intervene in world affairs in increasingly powerful ways. He—through His servants and His true Church—is preparing the way for Jesus Christ’s return as King of kings!
God wants all of us to be in His Kingdom, each in due time. But first, He has to know where our “heart” is. Jesus Christ tells us, “And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations—‘He shall rule them with a rod of iron; they shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’—as I also have received from My Father” (Revelation 2:26–27).
It is the overcomers who, in the Millennium, will join Christ in ruling over the nations of this earth, ending centuries of confusion and war. God will give this privilege to those who are zealous in serving their Maker—not to those who are “lukewarm.” In fact, describing people living in the very last era before His return, Jesus said, “So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth” (Revelation 3:16). God wants each of us—those who will be part of His coming “team” of saints resurrected to rule the earth—to be “on fire” now for His Kingdom, for His purpose and for His great commission to powerfully proclaim His message to a dying world while we have the opportunity!
So, to those who are looking for an excuse—for any possible way to deny the need to tithe—God’s Word clearly indicates that they are pursuing a lost cause! Such people are not truly surrendered to God. They are not fervently involved in wanting to do His will, nor do they want to proclaim Christ’s message to the world with all of their being.
Once, when Jesus was questioned about missing His lunch, He replied, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work” (John 4:34). Jesus went on to tell us that we should all do our part in “reaping the harvest” of those whom God is calling at this time. He said, “And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together” (v. 36).
Indeed, you will not be “worse off” because of giving to your Creator a full tithe of your income and any other “increase” you may receive (Proverbs 3:9)! Rather, you will “receive wages” which lead to eternal life! You will be given a greater position of honor and opportunity if your “heart” is truly in doing God’s will and helping in the proclamation of His message in every way you can.
It is in that spirit that I urge all of you to practice God’s law of tithing. It is in that spirit that I encourage all of you to ascertain where Christ is working—to be sure that you pay your tithe to the true representatives of Christ who are teaching His message to the world today, explaining His inspired prophecies and actually doing His Work at this time.
God reveals that those who faithfully obey their Creator in this vital financial matter will be blessed in many ways. He promises to “open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it” (Malachi 3:10). Although God promises no one that he or she will be a millionaire, God will never forsake those who are truly faithful to Him (Hebrews 13:5). He will watch over them, bless them financially, protect them and guide them as they learn to “walk with Him” in sincerity and truth. May God help us to understand, and to do what His Word clearly reveals. May God help each of us do our part zealously in carrying out His Work at the end of this age! May God help you to understand and to learn to genuinely trust in your Creator. Then, as you truly “walk” with Christ in every area of your life, you will soon walk hand in hand with Him right over into eternal life in the Kingdom of God!