Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Tithing - Is it for Today?

We have been taught many false teachings and "doctrines of man", and there 
were many things that they taught that were contrary to what the 
Scriptures teach but 2 of the main ones were:

1. The Law was done away with
2. You must give your tithes(10% or more) 
every Sunday to the church.

At one of the churches we went to they made it a big deal and at the end
 of every year they gave each person an envelope with a piece of paper showing how much 
you gave and the date in which you gave it. However, it's an oxymoron to say that the 
"Law" is done away with and yet at the same time say that you still have to give tithes 
because the ONLY place that you find the command to give tithes is in the LAW!

Now, saying that, is the command of tithing still applicable today? 
To find out, we have to ask ourselves this question:

Who were the tithes for in the first place?

To answer that question, let's look at the following Scripture references to find out.

Numbers 18:21-24
  “And see, I have given the children of Levi all the tithes in Yisra’el as an inheritance
 in return for the service which they are serving, the service of the Tent of Meeting.
22 “And let the children of Yisra’el no more come near the Tent of Meeting, lest they bear sin and die,
23 Because the Levites shall do the service of the Tent of Meeting, so they themselves bear their crookedness. A law forever, throughout your generations: that among 
the children of Yisra’el they are to have no inheritance,
24 But the tithes of the children of Yisra’el, which they present as a contribution to YHVH,
 I have given to the Levites as an inheritance. That is why I have said to them, 
‘Among the children of Yisra’el they have no inheritance.’ ”

All the tithes went to the Levites in return for the service that they did in the 
Tabernacle because the Levites had no land inheritance. The Levites were to protect and 
prevent the Children of Yisra'el from entering the Tent of Meeting(Tabernacle) so that 
YHVH would not consume them because of their sin. The children of Yisra'el 
were to provide for them through their tithes and offerings.

Deuteronomy 12:6-7, 17-19
 “And there you shall take your burnt offerings, and your offerings, and your tithes, 
and the contributions of your hand, and your vowed offerings, 
and your voluntary offerings, and the firstlings of your herd and of your flock.
7 “And there you shall eat before YHVH your Elohim, and shall rejoice in all 
that you put your hand to, you and your households, 
in which YHVH your Elohim has blessed you.
17 “You are not allowed to eat within your gates the tithe of your grain, 
or of your new wine, or of your oil, or of the firstlings of your herd 
or your flock, or of any of your offerings which you vow, 
or of your voluntary offerings, or of the contribution of your hand.
18 “But eat them before YHVH your Elohim, in the place which YHVH your Elohim chooses, 
you and your son and your daughter, and your male servant and your female servant, 
and the Levite who is within your gates. And you shall rejoice before
 YHVH your Elohim in all that you put your hands to.
19  “Guard yourself that you do not forsake the Levite as long as you live in your land.

Most of the tithes and offerings were actually supposed to 
be eaten by the household that offered it, not just the Levites.

Deuteronomy 14:22-27
“You shall tithe without fail all the yield of your grain that the field brings forth year by year.
23 “And you shall eat before YHVH your Elohim, in the place where He chooses
 to make His Name dwell, the tithe of your grain and your new wine 
and your oil, and of the firstlings of your herds and your sheep, 
so that you learn to fear YHVH your Elohim always.
24 “But when the way is too long for you, so that you are not able to bring the tithe, 
or when the place where YHVH your Elohim chooses to put 
His Name is too far from you, when YHVH your Elohim is blessing you,
25 Then you shall give it in silver, and shall take the silver in 
your hand and go to the place which YHVH your Elohim chooses.
26 “And you shall use the silver for whatever your being desires: for cattle or sheep, 
for wine or strong drink, for whatever your being desires. And you shall eat there
 before YHVH your Elohim, and you shall rejoice, you and your household.
27 “And do not forsake the Levites who is within your gates, for he has no part nor inheritance with you.

The tithe of the crops from every year were to be eaten by the household as well 
as the Levites at the place that YHVH chose(Jerusalem) unless the household
 was too far away from there, in which case they would sell the crops, 
go to the place that YHVH chose(Jerusalem) and use the money in whatever 
way the household desired, as long as they remembered and rejoiced in YHVH 
as well as remembered the Levites because they had no inheritance.

Deuteronomy 14:28-29
  “At the end of every third year you bring out all the tithe of 
your increase of that year and store it up within your gates.
29 “And the Levite, because he has no portion nor inheritance with you, 
and the sojourner and the fatherless and the widow who are within your gates, 
shall come and eat and be satisfied, so that YHVH  your Elohim does
 bless you in all the work of your hand which you do.

 The tithe of every 3rd year was to be stored up in the gates 
of the household specifically for the Levites, widows, strangers, and orphans. 
If the household did this tithe, YHVH promised to bless the work of their hands in all that they did.

Deuteronomy 26:12-15

 “When you have completed tithing all the tithe of your increase in the third year, 
which is the year of tithing, and have given it to the Levite, to the stranger, 
to the fatherless, and to the widow, and they have eaten within your gates and have been satisfied,
13 Then you shall say before YHVH your Elohim, ‘I have put away the set-apart 
portion from my house, and also have given it to the Levite, and to the stranger, 
and to the fatherless, and to the widow, according to all Your command which 
You have commanded me. I have not transgressed Your commands, nor have I forgotten.
14 ‘I have not eaten any of it when in mourning, nor have I removed any of it
 for any unclean use, nor given any of it for the dead. I have obeyed
 the voice of YHVH my Elohim, I have done according to all that You have commanded me.
15 ‘Look from Your set-apart dwelling place, from the heavens, and bless Your people Yisra’el 
and the land which You have given us, as You swore to our fathers, “a land flowing with milk and honey.” ’

The year of tithing is every 3 years. The tithes in the 1st and 2nd year were to be eaten 
by the household in addition to the Levites. HOWEVER in the 3rd year the tithe 
was only for the Levites, strangers, widows, and orphans and not for the household. 
If the household gave this tithe without fail and didn't take any of it for 
themselves for any reason, then YHVH promised that 
He would bless the land which He would give them (the Land of Israel).

Now that we know to whom the tithes were for, we have to again ask ourselves the original question:

Is the command of tithing still applicable today?

To find this out, I would like to show you a great ministry called 119 Ministries. 
They have made a BUNCH of amazing free video teachings that will blow your 
mind away and will make you test what you believe(plus, they live in Costa Rica too!). 
A new video teaching that they recently came out with has to do with this exact topic 
and will answer through Scripture just weather or not tithing is still for us today. 
It's only 40 minutes long, or less time then watching your favorite
 football or basketball team and not much longer than your favorite 
TV show, plus it is chock full of Scriptural insight and knowledge on this topic.

Here is the link:

Now, if you watched the video, you would see that there is no doubt
 through the Scriptures that we can no longer keep this Instruction because there 
isn't a Temple and there are no Levites to give the offering to.  The people that say this 
use this for their own personal gain even though it wasn't for them anyway!

Now, saying that, that doesn't mean you can't or shouldn't give at all.
 In fact, giving was one of the most important tools Yahshua and the disciples 
used to see if people were really serious to follow Him(Yahshua) with all that 
they had physically and spiritually as well as to bless the poor, hungry, widowed, and orphaned.

In fact, there are many blessings if you do give, as Shaul(Paul) 
points out in his 2nd letter to the believers in Corinth:

2nd Corinthians 9:7-11
 7 Let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not of grief or of necessity, for Elohim loves a joyous giver.
8 And Elohim is able to make all favour overflow toward you, that you, 
always having all you need in every way, have plenty for every good work.
9 As it has been written, “He scattered abroad, He gave to the poor, His righteousness remains forever.”
10 And He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food,
shall supply and increase the seed you have sown and increase the fruit of your righteousness,
11 being enriched in every way for all simplicity, which works out thanksgiving to Elohim through us.

The disciples gave all they had, and they were blessed many times over. 
However, they weren't blessed in this physical life so much, unlike what
 so many church 'leaders' tell us. In fact, they were all persecuted and eventually 
killed for giving out the Bread that nourishes physically and spiritually. 
However, they were given an even greater blessing because they gave it all, 
a blessing that no man can get on this earth. There is a phrase that says, 
"You can't outgive God!", and it's so true. We have seen it time and time 
and time again, were we gave and it came back to us and much more.

YHVH blesses those who bless Him, and He loves those that keep 
His Instructions for our lives. If we share and give out what 
we have with others, YHVH promises that He will bless us, protect us, 
and keep us safe, as He said through the prophet Isaiah:

Isaiah 58:6-11
“Is this not the fast that I have chosen: to loosen the tight cords of wrongness,
 to undo the bands of the yoke, to exempt the oppressed, and to break off every yoke?
7 “Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and that you 
bring to your house the poor who are cast out; when you see the naked, 
and cover him, and not hide yourself from your own flesh?
8 “Then your light would break forth like the morning, your healing spring forth speedily. 
And your righteousness shall go before you, the esteem of YHVH would be your rear guard.
9 “Then, when you call, YHVH would answer; when you cry, 
He would say, ‘Here I am.’ “If you take away the yoke from your midst, 
the pointing of the finger, and the speaking of unrighteousness,
10 if you extend your being to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted being, 
then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness be as noon.
11 “Then YHVH would guide you continually, and satisfy your 
being in drought, and strengthen your bones. And you shall be
 like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail. 

May YHVH bless you and keep you in His Shalom(peace)!

Until next time...

The Montanez Family
Servants and Emissaries of Yahshua, Children of YHVH