Tithing According to the Scriptures

As always, read the scriptures for yourself and do your own study.  I only offer this study as a gateway into this subject.

I decided to look into the scriptures regarding tithing. Satan often mocks everything Yahwey does so I thought, well, perhaps he might have his hands deep in the pockets of folks based on his own agenda just like he does everything else.

Since most folks have decided that the law was done away with at the cross and tithing comes from the law, I thought I’d better take a closer look since it is evident that churches are using an Old Testament part of the Law to collect a tithe. After all, if a blessing follows obedience, we wouldn’t want to miss out on a blessing would we?

READ Deuteronomy 30:19-20 ~ this passage encourages its readers to do what they must do to receive the blessings.

“I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey His voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto Him: for He is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.”

Who first incorporated tithing? Yahwey is the God of the Israelites but He was also the God of Adam and Eve. Somehow, their children (Cain and Abel) knew that they ought to bring something to Yahwey, so it seems safe to say that tithing was established at creation. I am fairly certain that Cain and Able did not just bring their offerings as a gesture of kindness because Yahwey accepted Abel’s offering but He did not accept the offering that Cain brought.

Even though the principles of giving stem from discipline and obedience towards kindness and charity, there must have been some type of established tithing of what was acceptable and what was not acceptable, otherwise Yahwey would have accepted both Cain and Abel’s offerings. Tithing was also obviously established during the time of Abraham because Abraham gave 1/10th of everything to the king of Salem, which was later known as Jeru- salem.

Genesis 14:18-20 18 Then Melchizedek King of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of Elohim Most High, 19 and he blessed Abram, saying, “Blessed be Abram by Elohim Most High, Creator of heaven and earth. 20 And blessed be Yahweh Most High, who delivered your enemies into your hand.” Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.

Abraham’s grandson Jacob promised Yahweh a tenth of what he gained for his blessings. The reason is that everything we think we own, originally came from Our Creator and we are commanded to give Him one tenth of everything we gain. ~ Genesis 28:22 And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.

  1. What was considered a tithe?

Leviticus 27:30-33 30 “A tithe of everything from the land, whether grain from the soil or fruit from the trees, belongs to YHWH; it is holy to YHWH. 31 If a man redeems any of his tithe, he must add a fifth of the value to it. 32 The entire tithe of the herd and flockevery tenth animal that passes under the shepherd’s rod–will be holy to the YHWH. 33 He must not pick out the good from the bad or make any substitution. If he does make a substitution, both the animal and its substitute become holy and cannot be redeemed.”

Tithing was subject to meat, grains, produce etc., food for the house of Yahwey.

Q. Who received the tithe?

Numbers 18:21 Tithing that you shall tithe all the increase of your seed that the field yields year by year.

Tithing is a God given principle that ‘all’ belongs to Him, and when we receive ‘increase’ from Him, we give 10% tithe on all increase.

READ Matthew 23:23 The Pharisee’s and Scribes had forgotten the most weightier matters of Torah, justice, mercy and faith. The priests and the Levites were barred from owning hereditary land but were to be given a tithe from the children of Israel. Yahushua seemed to be eluding to Micah 6:8 What does Adonai require of you but to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with your LORD. As always, Yahushua upholds the Law. Our faith grows when we see the blessings arise due to obedience.

Numbers 18:24 But the tithes of the children of Israel, which they offer as an heave offering unto YHWH, I have given to the Levites to inherit: therefore I have said unto them, Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.

This was why tithing was first incorporated. The tithe was to supply the funds for the folks who took care of the duties at the temple.

Proverbs 3:9 Honor Yahwey with your substance, and with the first- fruits of all your increase.

Later on, Yahwey used the lips of a prophet by the name of Malachi to remind the children of Israel that they were to be honoring Him with their tithe.

Malachi 3:8-12 8 “Will a man rob Elohim? Yet you rob Me. “But you ask, ‘How do we rob You?’ “In tithes and offerings. 9 You are under a curse-the whole nation of you-because you are robbing Me. 10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house.

Yahwey then went on to let the people know that they could test Him in this giving for a blessing.

Malachi 3:10 ..… Test Me in this,” says YHWH Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. 11 I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,” says YHWH Almighty. 12 “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says YHWH Almighty.

In life, each person will reap what they sow and by keeping Yahwey’s commandments, their obedience will lead to long life and protection from evil.

The tithe {first 10%} of one’s increase belongs to YHWH. (READ Genesis 28:20-22) According to Yahwey, if someone does not tithe to YHWH, he is robbing from YHWH. That person will not be blessed. Here, YHWH uses the mouth of the prophet to challenge the skeptic to test Him and see if by being faithful and disciplined with the tithe that the skeptic will be blessed abundantly. Skeptics often become believers.

Q. Are there other uses for tithes?  The first tenth always belongs to Yahwey. In some cases the people were also allowed to convert the tithe into money so they could use it to celebrate the Feasts of Yahweh. This is found at Deuteronomy 14:22-27.

Deuteronomy 14:22 ¶ Thou shalt truly tithe all the increase of thy seed, that the field bringeth forth year by year. 23 And thou shalt eat before the LORD thy God, in the place which he shall choose to place his name there, the tithe of thy corn, of thy wine, and of thine oil, and the firstlings of thy herds and of thy flocks; that thou mayest learn to fear the LORD thy God always. 24 And if the way be too long for thee, so that thou art not able to carry it; or if the place be too far from thee, which the LORD thy God shall choose to set his name there, when the LORD thy God hath blessed thee: 25 Then shalt thou turn it into money, and bind up the money in thine hand, and shalt go unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose: 26 And thou shalt bestow that money for whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul desireth: and thou shalt eat there before the LORD thy God, and thou shalt rejoice, thou, and thine household, 27 And the Levite that is within thy gates; thou shalt not forsake him; for he hath no part nor inheritance with thee.

This second tenth of our income is not used for God’s Work or the preaching of the Gospel, as some now call this the festival tithe, it belongs to the faithful giver, to use in the way YHWH specifies. He provides for the needs of His Work by His first tithe.

As one can see in this passage, saving the festival tithe is commanded by YHWH, just as much as His first tithe is commanded. Since it is a part of His law, one ought to walk in obedience to set aside a full tenth a for this specified purpose. Not only does YHWH condone happiness and joy at Feast times, He actually commands it. One can use this tenth for special meals that one may not be able to enjoy at other times during the year.

There are also tithes for the poor or what was called ‘alms’ like the tithe that Cornelius paid {Acts 10:2}.

Deuteronomy 14: 28-29 At the end of three years thou shalt bring forth all the tithe of thine increase the same year, and shalt lay it up within thy gates: 29 And the Levite, (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee,) and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, which are within thy gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; that the LORD thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hand which thou doest.

Just remember this: Christ was angry with those who used the place of worship for money making. When we attend a Holy Day service, it should be for prayer and worship.

Matthew 21:12-13, “Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. It is written, He said to them, My house will be called a house of prayer, but you are making it a den of robbers.”

Q. When could the people bring their tithes?

Exodus 23:15 Thou shalt keep the Feast of Unleavened Bread: (thou shalt eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded thee, in the time appointed of the month Abib; for in it thou camest out from Egypt: and none shall appear before Me empty:)

Obviously not everyone lived in Jerusalem. A precept, as it is generally understood, that none should ever come to His appointed times without some offering or other, for the support of the Levites, and of the worship of Elohim. None shall appear empty means without an offering, or something devoted especially to the Lord. Make no mistake about it though, YHWH did not intend for the Holy Days to be a fund-raising occasion to raise money so don’t fall into that trap. Only give from what you have prepared to bring and give out of that if it is your desire to give on these special occasions but remember to keep the Sabbath ‘HOLY’.

Of course a person could divide up their portion of tithe in three parts:

Deuteronomy 16:16 Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty:

We are not supposed to come empty handed. Ten percent is already tithed in Deuteronomy 14:22. In verse 23, it is stating that by being faithful and putting aside 10%, the faithful can now use 10% of that tithe for their own family at the festival. I think this could be considered a second tithe.

At the Passover, when their harvest began, the people were to bring a sheaf of the first-fruits of their harvest, and might not eat any corn till this was done. ~ Leviticus 23:10 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:

At the next feast [Feast of Weeks/Pentecost] the people brought two wave loaves, for a second first-fruit of their wheat harvest (Leviticus 23:17); and at the Feast of Tabernacles, they offered the first-fruits of wine and oil. ~ Leviticus 23:17 Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baken with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the LORD.

So all in all, tithing is supposed to be utilized in the way that Yahwey commands. Because there is no temple, I suppose a person could save all of their increase to present when there is a temple in Jerusalem, or one could give an offering now, towards the preparations for His return. Good luck with that.

Since there is no temple, every person must seek His will in where He would like the increase to go.

In the mean time there is always the tithing for the poor and the widow that is mentioned here: Deuteronomy 14:28-29 At the end of three years thou shalt bring forth all the tithe of thine increase the same year, and shalt lay it up within thy gates: And the Levite, (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee,) and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, which are within thy gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; that the LORD thy God may bless thee in all the work of thine hand which thou doest.

YHWH commanded that every third year the tithe was to be used for the poor and less fortunate, the widow, the stranger; to make sure that these folks were not neglected.

The fatherless is any group of women that are raising their children on their own or to an orphanage where a child is without parents all together. This is an offering given every three years. The widow is anyone whom you know is trying to make ends meet without their husband or wife. These times certainly are a struggle for them, no doubt. A stranger is a foreigner who is trying to make it on their own. I tend to think the key words here are ‘within thy gates’. Blessing any of these categories, would certainly be blessing the LORD.

REMEMBER:  this study is only intended as a gateway to your own study but I do hope it helps everyone who reads it.  My prayer is that this study encourages you to seek the scriptures for yourself.

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About eudoranachand

A Spirit filled disciple who continually seeks His kingdom and His righteousness.
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