Summary: What is the Christian view of the tithe, the Sabbath, and all the eating we do in church?
In Scarlet Threads, I traced the origins of the world's religious system from the ancient days of Babel through the Roman Empire that still is with us today in the form of the religio political system that operates out of Vatican City. At least 20% of mankind is controlled directly by this force, much more indirectly.
It should be obvious to seekers of truth that one cannot stop at Rome when decrying Babylonian ways in today's church and world. Though the Reformation gave birth to a mammoth pull away from Rome, it is obvious that a unity with her was reclaimed through the years and is expressed in many ways through "Protestant" groups today.
I will touch on only a few of the similarities, and, as is my custom, encourage readers to continue the search on their own. I am becoming especially sensitive to the church government issue, and the similarities between Rome and her daughters in this area. Most of the booklet is devoted to this subject.
Other things I touch on are merely reminders that, like it or not, regardless of the nametag we wear, we are subjected to the traditions of men, and need to keep returning to God's pattern.
The tithing tradition is an excellent example of that of which I speak. Neither Jesus or the apostles gave a clear command to first century Christians, Jew or Gentile, about the ten per cent payment exacted by God of Jews under the Old Covenant. Yet today, Christian leaders teach tithing to their people as though the New Testament abounded with this concept.
The argument goes something like this: Tithing was in effect long before the law of Moses (valid). Tithing is an "eternal" principle(possibly). So, we too must pay our tithes into the storehouse (using Malachi's terminology). Now, the storehouse is the local church to which you belong. ( sorry, no longer valid, totally indefensible by Scripture)
Monies thus collected then go to pay for an assorted variety of expenses, most of which have to do with local concerns of that fellowship, and most of those concerns center around the building in which the group meets. Justification for this is found in the great amount of material wealth spent on the temple etc.
Oh, we've drifted a long way from the path trod for us by the original church.
1) Cash collected in the early church was given to (a) the man of God who was
unable to gain regular employment because of his itinerant ways (although Paul
often refused it anyway!), (b) elders worthy of "double honor" because of their
extra labors in the church, (c) the needy in their fellowship and other fellowships.
The collections were given to apostles to carry to other places. Churches did not
consider money their own, and individuals were taught to have this attitude also.
2)No mention of a percentage is given in the New Testament because people in
love with Jesus give everything. The concept of tithing is an insult to one whose
entire fortune has been given to God's use. The early Christians sold what they
absolutely did not need, gave the entire proceeds to the church, and allowed the