Summary: Admonition to tithe and what tithing is.
Rev. John W. Gerald
I. A DESCRIPTION OF WHAT THE TITHE IS.
Le 27:32 And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the LORD.
Simply stated, the tithe is one tenth of the increase. To explain that takes a little more effort. It can be explained better by examples. Suppose your income incurs no expenses in its production. You would tithe ten percent of it all. Some people tithe from the top, regardless of any expenses they incur. But suppose your income incurs an expense, such as that of:
(1.) A farmer. You would take the cost of fertilizer, seed, equipment expenses, rent on land or land improvement costs, labor (not your own), storage and other direct or indirect costs and subtract that from the income from the farm. The result would be your increase. You would tithe ten percent of this amount.
Suppose you were:
(2.) A merchant. You would add up your costs for rent, utilities, help, stock, insurance, equipment, taxes and any other direct costs for the production of income. The net would be the gross less these costs. This is your increase. You would tithe on your net income.
(3.) A Professional, a doctor, a lawyer, a dentist etc.
You would add up your expenses as in the previous examples. Your office expenses, utilities, personnel, insurance, equipment, professional fees, licenses, samples, storage facilities and subtract these from your gross income. This would be your increase. Your tithe should be taken from this.
The government puts a "sales tax" on the gross, then an income tax on the net. The LORD is kinder than the government! Besides, the LORD promises double blessings if you tithe!
(l.) To rebuke the devourer for your sake, and,
(2.) To pour out blessings that you will not have room enough to receive them.
He challenges you with this.
Le 27:30 And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD’S: it is holy unto the LORD.
II. WHO IS TO PAY THE TITHE?
Simply stated: Everyone who has income, and wants to serve the LORD, and who wants the LORD to bless them. We owe the LORD the tithe! If we withhold the tithe, the LORD will withhold His blessings from us. The enemy is free to attack us through storm and weather damage, lightning, wind, hail, insect and blight damage, loss of livestock, breakdown of equipment, loss through law suits, family breakup and even personal injury or sickness. God promises to save us from these loses if we will be faithful to Him in tithing.
Nu 18:26 Thus speak unto the Levites, and say unto them, When ye take of the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then ye shall offer up an heave offering of it for the LORD, even a tenth part of the tithe.
Ne 10:38 And the priest the son of Aaron shall be with the Levites, when the Levites take tithes: and the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes unto the house of our God, to the chambers, into the treasure house.
Even the Levites who received the tithes from the people were to pay their tithe of that which they had received from the people.
III. TO WHOM SHOULD THE TITHE BE PAID?
"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse..." That is, bring the tithe to the LORD’S house. It should be presented to the LORD. "...that there may be meat in mine house..." The work of the LORD should be supported by the tithe of the LORD’S people. If His people tithe, there will be plenty to support His work. But if they do not tithe, both they and the work of the LORD will suffer.
Le 23:20 And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the LORD, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the LORD for the priest.
The priests were to live from the offerings and tithes of the people. It is God’s plan for their support. The church with all of its outreach ministries, its pastoral expenses and operating expenses is to be supported by the tithe of the people today. There would be enough for all this if the people faithfully tithed. God would also bless the people and the church if they tithed. If you do not put anything into the church, you will get little or nothing out of it.
Ne 10:35 And to bring the firstfruits of our ground, and the firstfruits of all fruit of all trees, year by year, unto the house of the LORD: