"Until God's people learn how to tithe, we'll never accomplish for our church what God wants us to accomplish."
I've heard it often, and heard it recently. This begs the question: Just what WOULD a mega church pastor do with all the money that would come his way if all members forked over 10% of their income?
Well, we have a glimpse of what the answer might be, right here in Jacksonville, Florida.
Rodney (R.J.) and April Washington are the pastors of "Titus Harvest Dome Spectrum Church" - whose website is www.rjwashington.org - and at their church property they are nearing completion of their church's very own 4-story, 80-room hotel constructed at a cost of $11 million.
Yes, "Apostle R.J." and "First Lady April" Washington are building the "Marble Waters Hotel and Suites" - pictured above - right here in Jacksonville on the church property.
What would compel a church to decide to get into the hotel business? That is a good question, as "hotel rooms" and "mega church pastors" aren't real good combinations, if you know what I mean. Perhaps the Apostle is going to use the hotel to care for widows and orphans, or to house the homeless in our city?
What we do know about the Marble Waters Hotel and Suites, is that it is a for-profit business venture. According to the local Jacksonville business weekly, the site is at the church property, and the permit was pulled by "Water Marble Holding, LLC", whose managing member is Titus Harvest Dome Spectrum Church and Apostle R.J. is himself the registered agent for this corporation.
But it doesn't stop there. There is also a "Marble Waters Hotel and Suites, Inc.", a FOR-PROFIT Florida corporation, whose address is located at one of the church properties. Guess who is the head of this for-profit corporation? Yes, it is "First Lady April" herself, with Apostle R.J. as the registered agent.
So this gives us a glimpse of what might happen if everyone tithed at a megachurch: there would be so much money that they would use it to build a hotel with a spa, owned and operated by the pastor and his family.
Or, they might use it to spend $20 million to open seven-new satellite churches like Ed Young, Jr., or they might use it to build a magnificent water fountain as an "architectural invitation to Jesus Christ", as a part of their $120 million campus renovation - like First Baptist Dallas.
"Bring ye the whole tithe into the storehouse/hotel."