Summary: In this sermon I went deep into Malachi 3 to explain all aspects of the tithe. The good (what we all like to preach about) and the bad. This isn’t about guilt, but it;s to point out the whole truth.
Watering The Seed
With The Tithe
Every seed we plant needs water to grow, if there is no water, the plant, the flower, whatever it is that you plant will not survive. You have to plant, than you have to water, and water, so you will get results. Well with the kingdom of God it’s the same way. When we plant a financial seed into our church, it’s just that, it’s a seed. But, when we continue to sow that is actually watering, and watering is vital to the success of your seed.
Stop Robbing God
God says right here, that if the Israelites return to God, He will return to them. But then in the next sentence, God is saying that the Israelites were robbing Him. How were they robbing God? They withheld the tithes & offerings from God. Now, the Hebrew meaning of tithe actually means, the 10th part.
What is God saying to His church today, 2006? Return unto Me, and I will return unto you. So, how do we return to God? How do we get closer? We get closer to God with our giving. Now, that’s not the only way we get close to God, please don’t misunderstand me. But why is God talking to His people, saying that they are robbing Him? Because they are withholding tithes & offerings.
Some people think that only rich people have greed, but in fact, the majority of the time it’s those who are struggling in life in the area of their finances that are more greedy. Can’t even yank $1.00 out of their hand. God wants nothing to come between you & Him, and so many people keep their money between God & themselves.
If you understand that God is trying to get things to you, not take away from you. Honestly, do you think God really needs your money? People walk on streets of gold in heaven, the gates of heaven are made out of pearls, there are beautiful stones that line the wall of heaven, and, God has prepared a mansion for those that are going to be in heaven. Do you honestly think for one second God needs your money? Why does God require a tithe than? Obedience & love
Getting out from under the curse of poverty
You are cursed with a curse; for you have robbed Me....
Israel brought themselves up under a curse because they robbed God. Many people are broke as a joke and crying out for money, but in a sense, God can’t do anything. God wants to bless you, but you are living under a curse. You got to get out from under that curse, so the blessings can overtake you and your family. The reason many in the body of Christ are struggling today, is that they are not giving like they are supposed to.
Now I talked about Israel robbed God in their tithe, but it also says in their offerings. How can someone rob God of offerings? The tithe is God’s, not necessarily the offering. But, here is what God was telling me. In the Old T, Israel gave certain offerings unto God, but, how this relates to you and I this morning is that there have been times that God has spoken to you about giving, and either you withheld giving what God said, or you didn’t give all that God said to give. Now, here is something to think about here. In Psalm 35 the Bible says that God takes pleasure in the prosperity of His people. The offering is what you give above your tithe. You got to get this into your spirit this morning that God wants you blessed, not cursed. If God takes pleasure in seeing us prosper, than when God sets an amount for you to give, and you don’t give it, your robbing Him of the favor & blessing that He wants to give you.
- Obeying God and blessing others who have prayed.
The thing with a curse is, God never puts a curse on someone, they do it to themselves. We reap a harvest because of our own actions- whether it’s curses or blessings.
Bring the tithe into the storehouse
So, where is the storehouse? It’s your local church. It’s the place where you get fed from. If you tithe into tv ministries, that’s not right. You can give offerings, but your tithe, which is 10% of what you make, goes to your local church. It’s not just any 10th, it’s the first 10th. Some people say, now is this the gross or the net that I tithe on, and my answer to that is, do you want a gross blessing, or a net blessing. The thing is, the Bible doesn’t specifically say before you pay uncle sam a dime, pay God.