Sad Statistics and Some Answers-Part Three
According to Year 2000 Statistics from George Barna Research Group only 8% of born-again adults tithe to their local church. 16% give no donation at all. This is a very sad statistic. It is a contradiction. How can you be a born-again Christian and not believe in giving to God's work at your local church?
It would be 'safer' for me to just ignore the subject of tithing and talk about one of the other sad statistics instead. It is 'dangerous' to talk about the tithing issue because:
1. Statistically 84% of you are going to disagree with me
2. People are very possessive about their money
3. Most Christians don't like hearing about this topic.
4. Many argue that were under grace, not under the law
I will unashamedly speak on this subject because tithing and giving is biblical. And the reality is, if a principle is biblical and yet only 8% of Christians are following the biblical principle, the subject needs to be discussed over and over again until it is understood. This is just a nugget, so we can't say much, but we can plant seeds. And the reality is that those of you are receiving this nugget by e-mail are probably already tithing.
92% of born-again people do not tithe
We will give the excuse people give for not tithing, and then counter that excuse:
- It is an old testament principle-why would God use tithing to support the work of God (providing for the priests, etc.) in the old testament and not have pastors and other leaders supported by tithing-are they suppose to work secular jobs for their income? Then people complain, because the pastor is never available. Duh? How do people think the church building, utilities, salaries, etc. get paid-by Tithes and Offerings
Jesus supported tithing:
Luke 11:42 "But woe to you Pharisees! For you pay tithe of mint and rue and every kind of garden herb, and yet disregard justice and the love of God; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others." The principle he was teaching was tithing is correct, but don't forget the way you live your life.
- If they would not talk so much about tithing, I would give-so are you going to disregard a biblical principle because it is talked about so much? Does that mean if the pastor emphasizes love, that you will stop loving? And guess what? If more than 8% of the Christians gave, there would not be such a need to emphasize this subject. And we should never avoid talking about biblical principles and truths of Scripture. And in reality, most churches only talk about tithing only a few times a year.
- I don't agree with the church, so I hold back my funds-If you don't agree with the church, then don't attend that church. Some argue, I am taking a stand. However, they keep the money to themselves and do not give it any place else. Are they 'taking a stand' or have they found an excuse to keep the money to themselves.
- It is my money-This is a lie from the pit of hell. Nothing we have is ours. We came to this world with nothing. Anything we own is on loan to us from God. It is His money, and He only asks us to give a portion back to His work. The local church is His work. If you do not believe the church you go to is doing His work, then go someplace else. But don't rob God of His finances. And guess what? He doesn't need it. But He uses tithing as a way to show us our heart.
- I can't afford it-I would argue that you can't afford to not tithe. And many say they cannot afford to tithe because they just don't have the money. Yet they can afford to rent videos, buy Mochas, buy the latest clothing, go to the movies.
"I can't even pay my bills." It is better to honor God's principle on tithing and trust him to help you pay the bills. You will never know if He will provide if you don't give Him he opportunity to reveal His faithfulness. I learned this one myself.
- It didn't work for me-Because you tithe does not mean you will get the same amount of money back in financial blessings, you may or may not. However, if you are not faithful to God's principles, especially if He has convicted you on it, You are walking out of His covering. Guess what? Walking out of His covering, may cost much more financially, than the 10% you could be giving.
- I donate my services and time-I have used this one before (I gave many, many hours of labor and professional services to Christian groups when I was financially tight). It is good to donate time and services, but that is not the biblical principle of tithing. Tithing is giving 10% of what you have received. I would argue that the giving of time is giving offerings. I trust God to give me the ability to give me strength to give of my time and labor. But do I trust Him to give me finances when I give my tithe when I don't have the money? I say Absolutely YES!! Why, because I became faithful in tithing financially, and He was faithful.
Tithing is an issue of trust more than anything else. Do we trust God with our finances (they of course are not ours).
16% of born-agains do not give at all to their local church. Some of the reasons for this may be:
- They may be 'floating Christians' (they do not stay for any length of time at one church), which means there is no accountability in their lives, which usually leads to carnal Christianity.
- Their money is more important than God's work-money has become an idol. They are selfish.
- They answered all the right questions that define them as born-again, however they are really lost people. I know this is a hard statement. But how can you be born-again at not give anything to your local church? We have already covered the excuses given for not giving or tithing.
Be a giver of God's money
Has the Lord been convicting you about your concept of money? Do you see any truth at all in what we have shared? Do you want to do things differently? Then start giving to God's Kingdom. There is no need to ask God for His will on this subject. It is His will to give, so just do it! You will be amazed! And the enemy will have one less foothold in your life.
In the next nugget we will share on Commitment to Christian faith.
To the world, you may just be somebody...but to somebody, you may be the world.
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