In the video below Charles Stanley takes an email question from "Yvonne", who asks what should be done when a spouse believes the family should tithe, but the other spouse does not.
Stanley starts off by helping Yvonne see she needs to diagnose the deeper spiritual problem that her mate has for not wanting to tithe:
"Here is what I've discovered. If a person is living in sin, they don't want to tithe. If a person is, for example, being unfaithful to them, they don't want to tithe. If a person is just selfish, normally they don't want to tithe. If a person does not really and truly trust God they don't want to tithe. You can just go right down the list of the reasons people do not want to tithe."Here's what I've discovered: pastors give terrible financial advice, and divorced pastors like Stanley give terrible marital advice involving finances. Charles Stanley puts forth the idea that Yvonne's non-tithing hubby is "living in sin". In fact he puts forth the idea that he might be an unfaithful spouse, maybe he's an adulterer. Or maybe Yvonne's husband might actually just not be a true Christian at all. Nice marital advice there for a Christian wife, Chuck.
Until modern day Christians wake up and realize that they have been taught a completely skewed view of what "church" is, charlatans will continue preying on people to get them to fork over large sums of money to support their "ministries". If you haven't already, go to the Wartburg Watch's e-church service for May 6th to listen to Wade Burleson's sermon on what "church" is and what it is not.
You just have to chuckle when Chuck delivers this zinger; it sounds like a line from a Saturday Night Live skit parodying pastors who insist on their followers giving 10% of their income:
"And often times it [not-tithing] is pure unbelief. They just cannot fathom how you can take 1/10th out of their income and still buy as much, purchase as much, do as much, with 9/10ths. But that's the awesome miracle of God."Perhaps Obama needs to try this. Maybe if Obama would push the idea of a new tithe tax, this would finally convince evangelicals that Obama is indeed a Christian and not a Muslim. Who but a true, bonafide evangelical would dare to preach that God requires a tithe? Obama needs to take a page from the playbook of conservative evangelical storehouse tithing preachers, and start preaching that people are obligated to give just 10% more to the government, that God will bless them, and they will still be able to "buy as much, purchase as much, as with 9/10ths - it is a miracle of God." After all, the tithe in the Old Testament was a tax - so why not institute a new "tithe tax" here in the U.S.?
Finally, if there really was an "Yvonne" who sent this email to Charles Stanley, here is Watchdog's message to you: I am sorry that this man who is one of the most respected Baptist bible teachers in the world, couldn't give you an honest answer to your question. But your mistake was asking Charles Stanley anything about your finances, or anything related to marriage. Here is the answer you needed to hear; it is biblical, and it is honest, and it is obvious:
"Yvonne, a husband and wife should decide between themselves what they are to do with their money. Don't let the doctrine you've been taught in church known as the "storehouse tithe" cause even an ounce, not one single millisecond of friction in your marriage. That a supposed "man of God" would give you advice contrary to scripture that might cause you strife and conflict in your marriage is beyond belief.
There is no prescribed percentage that your family needs to give to a church or any religious organization in order to receive God's blessing. That idea is pure poppycock. It is legalism. It is greed on the part of the pastor and religious holy men who have taught this idea in order to maximize revenue for their religious organizations.
Listen to what your husband says. His not wanting to give 10% to your church is very likely NOT because he is living in sin or an indication he is not a Christian. To the contrary he is probably trying to be a wise steward of your family's finances - his primary job as a Christian husband is to provide for you and the children and for your futures. It is not to fork over large sums of your family's finances to support a 501(c)3 religious organization. Your husband has wisdom. Listen to him and his reasoning.
The New Testament is clear: every person (and family or couple) should determine in their heart what to give. And this applies to you and your husband. The two of you should decide what to give, and where to give. Put your family first. Meet the needs of your children, put money away for their future and their education. Support your church financially, yes, but don't let anyone guilt you or scare you into thinking it must be a certain percentage else you and your kids are cursed by God. The process used in determining what you and your husband give to your church or to any worthwhile cause that you choose, should be one of joy and thanksgiving. It is preachers like Charles Stanley that are trying to put a burden on you and your husband. Don't let them."
Amen! Good answer. And there could be even more possible reasons or a combination of reasons that the husband does not tithe.
Stanley's answer demonstrates two things to me. Religion can cause division between husband and wife. And many times preachers give a spiritual cause of something where there's really a different cause. Sorta like "the devil made me do it" thinking.
Maybe the wife could ASK her husband why he doesn't tithe, or she could think about it and figure out why-since she knows how he thinks on things. She could try just trusting her husband's judgement and realizing that God knows all about the whole situation anyway and is not going to hold it against her. Hopefully she won't start worrying that God will strike her husband dead over it.
I think sometimes men aren't so easily duped by other men. The husband may not be so mesmerized with Stanley or other preachers as the wife is. Or sometimes it's the husband who is taken in, and the wife can see through it all easier.
It actually shows a little gall by Stanley that he assumes he knows why some guy is doing what he's doing. If the husband finds out what Stanley said, I'd think he'd be rather annoyed.
I think Stanley should have said, "I don't know why your husband doesn't tithe. I think you should respectfully ask him about it, if it's bothering you."
And who is Stanley to be giving advice on marriage. His failed.
Stanley should be disqualified from answering any question remotely related to marriage.
I am in tears as I read this post. So many christians live under guilt if they don't give their 10%. That is because Preachers have indoctrinated them that it is God's command to give that 10% or else God won't bless you or will kill you. This sickens my stomach!
Jesus has given us Holy Spirit to be our teacher and guide.....Jesus told each and one of us to search the Scriptures for ourselves and be like the Bereans by reviewing what they preach is God's Truth.
Here's Stanley in early 2010 giving more questionable financial advice.
Hey Dog, I heard a new song "Church Clothes" from Christian Hip Hop artist Lecrae and it made me think of you. He touches on several of your favorite topics:
clergy sexual abuse
Some might be surprised where it goes from there.
Steve Gaines says fork it over so God will bless YOU!
Does anyone still listen to that sad excuse for a "man of God." Talk about a dinosaur. WD, wish you would move on from the tithing issue. People who tithe will continue to do so, those who don't won't. Tithing is no one's "ticket" to heaven. Let it rest. As for Stanley, who cares?
The Southern Baptist really love money!!!
"If you’re going to come back to God and if you’re going to renew your fellowship, you’re going to have to begin with the tithe."
"And who is Stanley to be giving advice on marriage. His failed."
His divorce is so long ago , who remembers or even knows?
The Bloggers Knows!
Financial advise from a former Amway salesman. What a joke this guy is.
Yep, like HE should be giving marital advice... And he always preaches things that are not Biblical.
"People who tithe will continue to do so, those who don't won't."
I changed my position on tithing after reading this blog.
Keep teaching the truth about tithing, WD.
All the trees in the world originated from nine trees that were in the Garden of Eden. These trees are the pomegranate, the mulberry, the berry, the rose, the palm, the ebony, the rue, the nut and the vine. There were ten species of trees in the Garden of Eden- nine were for man and one was for God. One of the ten was sanctified. The one tree that was set apart and sanctified as holy to God was taken by man! This is the same sin committed every Sunday in thousands of churches around the world when God's people walk out of the church building with the tithe in their pockets. Malachi 3:8-10, "Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed Me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed Thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed Me, even this whole nation. Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in Mine house, and prove Me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it." I Corinthians 16:1, 2, "Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come."
Very interesting information on tithing. I would appreciate your thoughts on this article.
God bless you, Jax!
The question here for this lady to ask is not "why doesn't your husband tithe?" but rather he needs to ask her "why DO you tithe?" Where in the Bible did anyone, ever, Old Testament or New testament, give 10% of their earned wages to a local 501(c)(3) budget? And even if somehow I am convinced to give 10% "to God", who is to receive these funds on God's behalf? The poor, widow, orphan? No, God receives it unto himself through the budget of the local 501(c)(3). And finally, dear, since the Bible is clear we are to stay out of debt, where in the budget do we cut this 10% from? Our kids school? Our car maintenance? Our health insurance? Our taxes? Our entertainment budget with our family? Our retirement? Our kids' college funds? In other words, who will pay the price, make the sacrifice, so that the 501(c)(3) can buy more chairs, build that building, pay its overhead, or pay the staff Christmas bonuses?
Jim - I think the WD should let the tithing issue "rest" when the preachers do. You think they will let it rest? Not a chance. They have to pay those bills.
People who tithe will continue to do so, those who don't won't. Tithing is no one's "ticket" to heaven. Let it rest.
God is being robbed when people give 10% "to God" and then the local 501(c)(3) steals it all (keeps 90% of it) to pay overhead and salaries and the "least of these" get relatively none of it. Why would God want me to give "his money" to these budgets where those in real need will never see a penny?" Did Jesus say "I have come so that there will be beautiful churches, well staffed, with great programs, on every corner? You are being deceived if you let these men "rob God" of the tithe you are giving to them instead of to God. Give your tithe to God, not to church budgets. Please.
Anon 3:36 p.m.
Amen & Amen!
Thats the same Charles Stanley as this: http://stopbaptistpredators.org/collusion_individuals.html#CharlesStanley
He also got divorced: http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/exposes/stanley/general.htm
Christian Hip Hop artist
Isn't that an oxymoron?
Anon 3:29 and 3:36 said it better than I ever could. Thank you!
As to where you're supposed to cut, you can start with that "entertainment budget" and your kids' college fund. Private school tuition for the pastor's kids is expensive, and his kids are better than your kids. *cough*
And of course, if you're like Charles Stanley and your car falls apart, you can just sit back and wait for a wealthy church member to give you a new one (begins around the 5-minute mark).
I've actually heard preachers say you should move to a smaller house or sell your car and buy an older one just so you can give more to their 501(c)(3).
ALL YOU WHO BELIEVE IN TITHING OBVIOUSLY OMIT MAMACHI CHAPTER 1 VS. 1. HERE IT IS IN PLAIN ENGLISH "THE BURDEN OF THE WORD OF THE LORD TO ISRAEL BY MALAVHI". I REST THE CASE. IT ONLY WAS GIVEN TO THE NATION OF ISRAEL AND OVER 2000 YEARS AGO. GET OVER THE GUILT OF THOSE THAT WOULD HAVE YOU BELIEVE IT WAS GIVEN TO THE CHURCH. IT WAS NOT THEN NOR IS IT TODAY. THANK GOD FOR GRACE AND THE CROSS OF CALVARY.
What I've noticed: a person holding an earned doctoral degree who persists for decades at incorrectly but publicly referring to "a person" as "they" possibly also cannot be trusted to explain the finer points of the Scriptures, such as those related to stewardship. First: learn proper use of English grammar; then: speak to the marketplace personal interpretations of the Bible.
How hard is that for any grown man in the United States to do?
"There were ten species of trees in the Garden of Eden- nine were for man and one was for God. One of the ten was sanctified."
Wow - this wins the prize for taking scripture out of context.
Don't give Steve Gaines any new ideas.
Tom, your painting the New Testament church as a whole, and all pastors and preachers in general as a fraudulent leaders, with unthinking, undiscerning followers.
You're angry because your church wouldn't give you the common respect of hearing you out.
You have been tainted by tears and injured by wrong, but your wholesale rejection of Conservative Biblical truth, and your slander and libeling of men you disagree with has made you trade the graces of truth for the glory of the blog. No one seemed to "care" what Tom Rich thought before this blog when he was trying to speak up at church, and for that he should have been given a fair listening. But now that many are listening, you'll take every scrap of disagreement you can find, and run everyone through that you deem to be on the same theological side as those who wouldn't listen to you.
It is one thing for you to disagree with men who teach tithing, it is another thing for you to "know their motives" and slander them at every turn. Speaking of "doctrine you believe" is respectable. Insulting and degrading men you disagree with is beyond the pale of Christian dialogue. Not everyone that believes the doctrine that FBCJax believes are "abusive" or ignorant.
You may disagree with Stanley's teaching on the tithe. But you are dead wrong concerning his character. You don't know him from Adam's house cat.
And it's clear that you still do not understand the biblical teaching on "giving" as it relates to the church.
Wonder if Stanley ever preaches on divorce?
How about living in France with 75% going to the state 10% going to your local Baptist pastor. If you earned $200,000 which would be rich your take home pay would be $30,000 which compared to $15,000 on an income of $100,000 it would be better to come to the good old USA and not work and live higher on the hog than one could ever make it in France.
You need to check out where some of the PHd's are handed out.
Charles Stanley should never give maritial advice as he most certainly is no role model when it comes to marriage - I most certainly don't think he should have used this woman's problem as a public sermon.
Good article W/D . . .
Here's what I've discovered
To echo an opening statement from Pastor Stanley,
"Here is what I've discovered
If a person is living in sin,
they don't want to tithe...."
O really! I respectfully submit that maybe that's what 'he' has "discovered," but that's not all there is to be "discovered," according to Amos 4:4-5;
(NKJV) 4 "Come to Bethel and transgress, At Gilgal multiply transgression; Bring your sacrifices every morning, Your TITHES every three days.
5 Offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving with leaven, Proclaim and announce the freewill offerings; For THIS YOU LOVE, You children of Israel!" Says the Lord GOD.
Now, I could have "discovered" wrong, but if according to the prophet Amos, "the Lord GOD," SAID IT; then this is quite to the contrary of what pastor Stanley has "discovered" regarding living in sin and not wanting to tithe! (Israel proved that point candidly,) God said they "LOVED" to do it (among other things) while they were yet living in sin. Just something to consider.
Grace & Peace - Elder gab
Anon May 8 11:34 AM has already drank the coolaide.
That's so stupid to say "their living in sin." It's also self- righteous because everyone sins every day. This is made up crap by preachers who think that they are gods and don't sin anymore.
Dr. Stanley wins souls. I have never seen where Watchdog has won one soul to Jesus.
I am sick and tired of you limp wristed, weak kneed, Obama voting liberals tearing down God's leaders.
It is a sad day when I ran across this trash on the web.
What a waste of space and this "Watchdog" character needs to get some psycological help.
you are one sick puppy
I believe one of the biggest sins in America is irresponsible tithing. All across America, churchgoers regularly tithe to apostate ministries that do more harm than good. According to Grounds For Giving, there are approximately 300,000 churches in America. Sadly, most of them are nothing more than religious businesses.
If your church doesn't publicly go soulwinning in your local community on a weekly basis, please STOP tithing.
If your pastor doesn't preach hard against sin, mentioning sin by name, please STOP tithing.
If your pastor doesn't preach against the blatant crimes by our government leaders, please STOP tithing.
If your church has a so-called Christian Rock 'N' Roll band, please STOP tithing.
If your pastor promotes John MacArthur, Benny Hinn, Pat Robertson or Billy Graham, please STOP tithing.
If your church belongs to a religious convention, such as the apostate Southern Baptists, please STOP tithing.
If your pastor doesn't regularly uplift the name of Jesus, please STOP tithing.
If your church is gay-friendly, please STOP tithing.
New BBC Open Forum said...
Christian Hip Hop artist
Isn't that an oxymoron?
I know this comment was in jest, but there's something about flippant remarks like this from otherwise decent people that bugs me.
Now, Hip Hop is most definitely not my thing, music wise, but I fail to see how it one can judge the "christianity" of an artist by their musical style. I'd even say that "Christian" Hip Hop is most likely far more honest and pleasing to God than most of the mainstream "Christian" music we get, especially the never ending stream of Praise and Worship churned out my Hillsong and the like
In short, I'm convinced there's no association between musical styles (no matter how much they may not be to your taste) and their acceptability to God. Surely it is the motivation and the heart of the person behind that counts?
I hate tithing.
I want to see the gospel go out but I don't want to give a dime towards it.
If God wants people saved and churches built, he can do it without our money..
see how stupid that is?
Anon 11:34am. Who made you an authority on the tithe that is to be given in the NT? Please answer with scripture references. As a side note Mr. Rich was placed in this position by FBC by simply asking questions. He is free in continuing his exercise of the freedom of speech and from what I read he is doing a pretty good job of bringing to the attention of those that need to know what the real stories are all about. He is trying to make the point " I would not have you ignorant brethren".
anon 8:31 You are confused. Most of those that post on this blog in an intellectual style are conservatives. I do not recall any Obama supporters posting in my most recent recollection. Possibly you could reveal a couple so we could verify.
Anon 11:34 am - thank you for your comment. You are quite wrong about your assumptions of me and my motives and my beliefs, but your comment, and the reasoning you use is very representative of what I have heard for three years. So it doesn't surprise me to hear your comments.
I am going to use your comment in my next post - but if you do come back and read this, can you tell me if you know me, or knew me when perhaps I was a member at FBCJ? To know this would be quite helpful as I finish my next post. Thanks!
"I hate tithing.
I want to see the gospel go out but I don't want to give a dime towards it.
If God wants people saved and churches built, he can do it without our money..
see how stupid that is?"
God created the whole universe but can't save anybody without our money? Can't ya'll see that it's the pastors and their staffs who need your money, not God?
"I hate tithing."
I hate discerning scripture as the Bible commands me to do.
It's easier just to worship my pastor.
"I want to see the gospel go out but I don't want to give a dime towards it."
I ignore the millions in my own town that don't have the truth and expect others to do all the work for me.
So long as I give them a little cash to ease my conscience.
"If God wants people saved and churches built, he can do it without our money.."
I am very much like the liberal democrats that I constantly criticize.
Money is the answer to every problem.
"see how stupid that is?"
See how stupid I am?
"Dr. Stanley wins souls."
Dr. Stanley is divorced.
Isn't that a sin, TROLL?
(NKJV) 4 "Come to Bethel and transgress, At Gilgal multiply transgression; Bring your sacrifices every morning, Your TITHES every three days.
... You children of Israel!" Says the Lord GOD.
You just proved my point. The children of Israel, under the law, MUST tithe. Not Christians, under grace. This is clearly to the children of ISRAEL. AND...they were to bring tithes EVERY 3 DAYS??? Really? Are you bringing the tithe every 3 days? Weren't they actually "tithing" 23%? Are you doing that, or just letting your preacher tell you its 10%? Are you really tithing anyway? And if so, why? Out of duty or obligation? If so, your motives are wrong and God can't use it. But the local 501(c)(3) can use it!
For all those who are having conflicting emotions about whether or not they should give tithes, I stand by and believe the Bible rather than any man's word, and this scripture verse (Leviticus 27:30) speaks loud and clear about the Tithe.
If 'you' still have issues with it after reading this verse, it's through your own disobedience, NOT God's. Do what's right by Him for all that He's done for you, but mainly because it's the right thing to do (no matter what anyone else says).
And it's clear that you still do not understand the biblical teaching on "giving" as it relates to the church.
May 8, 2012 11:34 AM
Please explain it to us. Each man was to give according to what he purposed in his own heart, cheerfully, not under compulsion. And please tell us why what Malachi wrote to priests who were stealing the tithe (food, grain for the storehouse) brought to them by the people, means Christians are to give 10% of their money? I know preachers are after the money, but are you claiming God is after the money too? Really? So buildings can be built (see European Cathedrals) or clergy can live in luxury? (see Catholic church hierarchy?)
Please, educate us on giving as it relates to the New Testament. And try and mention "the least of these" and orphans and widows and one's own family as part of your explanation. Thanks.
P.S. Don't feel bad if you can't do this. Neither can Mac or Gaines or Young or anyone else who has ever visited this blog been able to explain it. They resort to stories and weak arguments about being under the law, or what other preachers taught, etc. Good luck.
Hey WD - I want to "give" money to God. I don't know why He would want such earthly units of exchange, but apparently, for some reason I just want to give Him money. I bet he likes money, I know I sure do. I bet he needs money, because I sure do to pay for chairs and air conditioning and media. Now, how do I get him this money? Should I burn it at the altar? Should I give it to the priest at my local jewish temple? Should I give it to the Catholic priest? What about just send it to the Pope? Or can I give it to some guy that went to bible college, filed paperwork to be a 501(c)(3)organization and and calls the entity a "church" and speaks once a week in a building down the street? I don't want to "rob God" by keeping "HIS money" that I earned by working out in the sun all day yesterday. This is God's money, not mine. I need to get it to him so as not to rob him of the wages I worked hard for. Plus, it costs money to rent the building or pay for overhead and it takes money for these men to live and pay for their cars and phones and food and trips and hire their family...So, who gets this money I worked for? Standing by with my currency to "give" it to GOD?
ISLAM LOVES THE TITHE ???? go figure the idea of ushar in Islam is a direct continuation of the Judaeo-Christian idea of tethi or 1/10th. In fact, during the Taliban rule in Afghanistan, the government (who also considered themselves as protector of the state as well as religious students) collected the ushar from the people in villages and towns, thus reviving an old tradition of alms giving in the Islamic States of the past.
@ Anonymous 9:00
Looks like we have an IFBx troll here.
Comparing John MacArthur to Benny Hinn? LOL
"publicly go soulwinning in your local community on a weekly basis"? LOL
Everyone needs to read these following articles related to Charles Stanley:
A tithe of everything from the land, whether grain from the soil or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord.
Since you are using this as your proof text, are you giving God 10% (actually the OT teaches 3 tithes for a total of almost 25%) of your grain and fruit to the Lord?
I'm assuming that you are taking this verse literally and not trying to spiritualize the text like the liberals do and try to change food into money and the priest into a modern-day preacher.
While I do not disagree with much of what you write Tom, I do wonder what you think about financial support of the local church in general?
What I read in your posts is that giving to the local church in order that said church might support a full time pastor and/ or staff, as well as support missions and local ministry is a waste of money.
I also get the impression that maybe you believe churches should not have a full time pastor?
I really don't think this is what you are saying, but I would love to hear you clarify your position on this. If you have adressed this in another post feel free to just point me there.
You know what? If it turns you on to give the money you earned to your pastor, his staff, and to pay for the upkeep of a building that you go to once a week, feel free. I think it's a poor use of money, myself. You'd be doing more good to give it to widows and orphans. Give it to someone who truly needs it to make their life a little easier. Give it to some woman who doesn't have a husband. Give it to some woman who has a child with terrible problems. Buy some teenager a car. Help somebody that you personally know. When you think about it, any money given to the local church is a waste.
If we are to follow Levitical laws, did you have a ham sandwhich any time recently? Are your clothes made of two different fabrics (if you're wearing shoes I'm guessing yes). Get your haircut or beard trimmed recently? Publicly stoned any adulterous women lately? I can see where your need to give money might be a compensation for all the other spiritual laws you are breaking.
This highlights my big problem with those who say all scripture is without error and no context is needed. You just pick the old covenant laws that fit your version of the truth, but ignore those others that don't fit your needs.
Leviticus 27 - 30 “‘A tithe of everything from the land, whether grain from the soil or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord.
Agreed that the law involved grains and fruit. Food items. Never did it involve currency. AND, this is the ancient Mosaic law followed only by Jews. It was not for Gentiles and certainly is not for Christians. Is that all you have regarding NEW TESTAMENT giving? An ancient verse out of context from the law? Why are you ignoring ALL the other hundreds of laws contained in Leviticus? Think about that? You don't advocate we Christians follow all the laws set out in that book do you? Nah, of course not. You are not an Orthodox Jew. But you like that ONE about a tithe. And even if a tenth of it is the Lord's, wouldn't you argue that 100% is the Lord's. And even if it is holy unto the Lord, why should I give it to a local congregation and not give it to the Lord? You don't quite have the answers with your verse from Leviticus. And yet you ignore many other laws except the one requiring you to give 10% of your gross income. Wow, you must be one who is supported by other people's tithes? Just guessin.
Oh come on watchdog this should make perfect sense. The church member tithes ten percent to the church, the church gives it to the bank account, and the bank uses 90%of the churches money back into the community, the country abroad, and also affects the world. See protection is there thus Malachi 3 holds up. Don't you get it?? But let us play this out in a different way now I think of it the oil excutive that tithes may become egotistical in believing his prosperity is due to tithing and continue to exploit the common man out of their tithe money to pay for the $500 a month gasoline bill. So I guess Malachi could not apply....please Christians get a clue American prosperity is and never was based on tithing. MALACHI 3 IS BASED ON A ISRAEL AND TEMPLE SYSTEM ONLY. No church can and never was a storehouse (unless they cancelled their account prehaps). Please executive get a conscience like Ioccoca did of his salary for a year and sacrifice something and lower the gas prices.
As commenters have pointed out above, people pick the verses in the Bible that they like or that serve their purposes and ignore the rest.
Preachers, in 2012, in the USA, pointing to a verse in Malachi to tell us anything is absurd. Malachi was talking to a whole different people, government, religion, etc. That preachers get away with this shows the ignorance and lack of Bible study of modern people.
I have read this Blog and not once have YOU ever encouraged people to give to the Lord?
Are you really saved?
I know the Devil wants us to be selfish and greedy and never give a dime to the Lord's work.
I see YOU encouraging us to be selfish and greedy and never giving a dime to the Lord's work.
YOU are doing the Devil's business.
Hi Mark from yesterday and Anon from a moment ago - if you go back and read other articles on the tithe that I have written, it is very clear my position: I encourage Christians to give to their church or to any organizations they believe are doing God's work, as they are led by the Lord to do so.
My stand on the tithe is not directed toward Christians who give 10% or any percentage - it is directed squarely at the preachers who preach this nonsensical doctrine that we owe God 10% of our income, and to give it to God, we have to give it undesignated to the 501(c)3 religious organization (what preachers call "the church" and "the storehouse").
I've been writing about the tithe and exposing the nutty teachings of many mega church pastors in this area, and I'm waiting for someone to give me a Biblically-sound, or even just good old fashioned logical answer as to how the Old Testament tithe of 10% applies to Christians today, that Christians are obligated to give God 10% minimum of their income, and to accomplish this 10% transaction "to God", it has to go to the church they belong to.
Four long years, and no one has.
So I still say: give as much as you want to your church as you feel led to give. But don't give it out of coercion, don't give it thinking you are "obeying God's commandment", or anything of the such. Give out of joy, give because you've determined it is money well invested for what you intend it to be used for.
But my message is to the greedy preachers who preach it: stop it, most of you know it is not biblical but you do it anyways.
And Mark, about pastors - I do question the concept of full time pastors, at least as our American culture has developed the position into some sort of super spiritual guru who tells us what God means in the Bible. It is a vocation, one that a person can choose to pursue. But I would tell anyone who thinks they might be "called" by God into "the ministry"...to first go get a useful degree that trains you to be a functioning member of society, and then after that if you decide to "go into the ministry" as a vocation, then do it.
But I don't have a problem with a congregation deciding that they want to hire a full time pastor. We have attended small congregation for two years now that is looking for a full time pastor. They are going about it in a very open, transparent, congregationally-led and informed manner. I don't have a problem with that.
Thanks Tom for answering my questions. I agree with what you said in the answer regarding the tithe, and while I might not approach things exactly the way you have, I am thankful for your stance.
I also agree with your opinions (mostly) on the pastor's position. In full disclosure I am a full time pastor and have been one for a decade now. The only regret I have is that I did not plan better for a job outside the ministry should the day ever come that I need it.
All of my education and training has been focused toward professional ministry and therefore my resume is severely lacking for a job opportunity in the " real world."
I love what I do and I do believe that God gifted me to teach and shepherd but not in an authoritative way, but a coming alongside and teaching the Word and encouraging the body through that same Word.
Thanks again for answering the questions for me.
"I'm waiting for someone to give me a Biblically-sound, or even just good old fashioned logical answer as to how the Old Testament tithe of 10% applies to Christians today, that Christians are obligated to give God 10% minimum of their income, and to accomplish this 10% transaction "to God", it has to go to the church they belong to."
Keep waiting buddy. You will never get that answer from these crazy storehouse tithers. They are immune to the truth.
What you will get is a lot of ad hominem attacks from TROLLS who use capital letters and exclamation points in place of logic.
You will also get a lot of proof texts that don't even hold up to the most cursory of examinations.
Remember Jon L. Estes who debated the tithe here, changed his mind and then wouldn't give credit to the blog discussion?
And how about Les Puryear who was bloviating until he was asked some hard questions. He promised to "write a paper" on the subject and get back to us. That was a couple of years ago.
Those are there best efforts so far.
A good blog where the truth is always spoken is " News with Views". Check out Pastor Chuch Baldwin May 10 2012.
As far as tithing goes I don't want so spend our hard earned money to a mega church like FBCJ that squanders funds on extravagant salaries and perks for select pastors, telemarketing fees, and so forth.
I believe in tithing - giving to others who are less fortunate is an experience like no other. It's been said that those who give get so much more back in return. Whether your tithe is large or small doesn't matter. Every little bit adds up to make a big impact on someone's life.
Thanks to all of you who write with common sense as I do enjoy reading your thoughts (except for the troll who is a joke)
Mark - (and any other pastor or layman that sincerely questions how the church can function without money) your question from yesterday deserves a sincere answer, not just from Tom, but from others that believe God does not rely on the tithe to fund worthwhile ministries and missions like you asked about in the local church. Here is how he funds it in the New Testament: Each person gives as God has prospered him. Cheerfully, what EACH man has purposed in his own heart, not under compulsion. So what this will look like is the church will be full of elderly who pray and serve but can't give; children and college students who can't give, families who are poor and barely surviving financially due to health issues, lost jobs, poor decisions, etc. and can't give AND (Praise God!) there will be some men and women who are able to give millions to the ministry. While others can give thousands, while others can give a few hundred per month. Others will leave bequests. All of these people together are used by God to meet the financial needs for that congregation. The leaders should be able to minister on that budget God provides. They shouldn't have to beat the sheep or teach a false tithing doctrine. They need to do what they preach to us: Be a good steward of what God provides and Trust God to Meet all needs.
Here are two SBC pastors discussing the tithe distribution and the over-and-beyond-the tithe you give for other essentials.
From the pulpit, he stated that if he ever divorced, he'd step away from the pulpit...
...still waiting for him to be a man of his own word.
The problem is that Stanley (and all the other storehouse tithing ministers) equate giving and tithing. From the question Stanley posed, you don't know if the real issue was giving to the church or tithing. You don't know if this person is a Christian, you don't know if they go to church with the spouse.
Funny, the people who profit the most from tithing are the ones who continue to preach this false teaching of old covenant tithing as still binding on new covenant Christians.
I am a Christian and I believe in giving Tithe. some people like to turn around other peoples words so it can fit what they want to say. God said to give from our heart. God don't want any ones money that feels they don't want to give it is not a rule it's a heart thing. Don't we teach our children to share. we teach them to give. God ask us to give when are heart is in it its to pay bills in the Church its to help people out side the church. Its to help people in the church. it's not free to do theses things. Yes there are people that miss use Gods money but there are many more that don't. I want to have a giving heart. I am sorry that people don't see the real reason we Tithe. In the old testament it was law new testament in your heart. if it's not in your heart to give then don't give but don't put down people that do give because you don't understand why they do it.
Debra - you say you believe in giving the Tithe, then everything else you wrote is a clear argument against tithing. Give generously, from the heart. I agree. Tithing, by definition, is not cheerful, from the heart, new testament giving. It is old testament law, with the threat of death and a curse if you don't give it to the religious leaders.
To divorce is not the "sin". You have to look at the contrast between the "adultress" (or prostitute) on who's behalf Jesus interceded and how divorce was perceived in 1st century Judea.
Jesus did not condemn her because of her debased status, her "lot" in life, her probable extreme poverty, etc., etc.
Divorce on the other hand, was a selfish act and usually only obtained by the rich and for selfish reasons - lust, greed, loss of attraction, etc., and utterly destructive to the family and to the wife who had little or no rights. Rarely was it obtained for adultery or physical or mental abuse (yeah ladies, good luck with that in 1st century Judea). Jesus in effect is saying that if you divorce for such selfish reasons and remarry - you're an adulterer in the eyes of God nevertheless.
Funny though...Jesus never seemed to "condemn" anyone outright. On the other hand, he never seemed to give the rich and affluent any excuses or cut them any slack.
In this guy's case - did he remarry? I'm not nosy enough to wonder about the reasons he divorced. I do know this, however: Divorce is destructive - and far more destructive to the institution of marriage than gay marriage or even the mere acknowledgement of homosexuality, as a single example, could ever be. It pits parents against their children, children against their parents and often forces children to lie about one of their parents under threat of punishment - "shunning", if you will. So how come Preachers, Priests and Rabbis don't raise the roof to condemn it?
Because nobody cuts off their nose to spite their face. Or shoots themselves in the foot or what ever metaphor you want to choose. Because divorce has become acceptable. Tossing aside your partner for one who's more wealthy, younger, prettier, sexier is all the rage. But how many ministers I wonder, have counseled abused spouses to honor their own vows?
Interracial marriage, gay marriage, card playing, substance abuse, short dresses, dirty dancing, watching "Glee" - easy targets to be shrill about. Not a lot of thinking or reflecting goes into sermons condemning those things. I'm not suggesting preachers never address it from the pulpit - but they're not public about it as they should be. Angering a divorced and remarried congregant who brings dollars into your church is more dangerous than condemning a homosexual who isn't welcome in your church in the first place.
"For all those who are having conflicting emotions about whether or not they should give tithes, I stand by and believe the Bible rather than any man's word, and this scripture verse (Leviticus 27:30) speaks loud and clear about the Tithe.
If 'you' still have issues with it after reading this verse, it's through your own disobedience, NOT God's. Do what's right by Him for all that He's done for you, but mainly because it's the right thing to do (no matter what anyone else says)."
I guess that means I cannot fry my meat in goats milk, either. And we should stone homosexuals. It is all there....in the OT.
I am amazed at the ignorance out there in Christendom.
One Anonymous said that you were "one sick puppy" and that you needed psychological help. Well, if this person is right, then you should seek the help of Charles Stanley. Stanley doesn't preach the gospel very much -- just psychology!
Also, who would want to tithe to a preacher who wants your money to help build another Belogio-style church like the one FBC Dallas is building. Just think, 130 plus million+ -- Just makes me sick!!!!
I very much appreciate you Watchdog!
Thanks Watchdog for taking your time to point out some errors. Not only with Stanly's advice but on tithing.
When the Children of Israel came to Mt Sinai they were to go up the mountain and hear God's voice and obey. They rejected that plan and became covenant breakers at that moment. Then they sent Moses back up the mountain with their plan and thus the law came down the mountain and was placed upon them. That was never God's plan.
What we see with today's church is when the people reject God's plan, they come under law. Rules and regulations become a way of life.
God's people today are to be led by the Holy Spirit. They are to hear the voice of God and obey. But most believers are not in any condition or position to live that kind of life and the law becomes a replacement way of life.
Rev. Stanley and many other pastors who agree with his position on tithing never want to talk about 2 Corinthians 8:12 which states:
"For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have." (NIV)
The Commentary Notes to this Scripture in the Life Application Study Bible (Tyndale House Publishers, Inc 2004) explains this Scripture with the following:
"[Apostle] Paul says that we should give what we have, not what we don't have. Sacrificial giving must be responsible. Paul warns believers to give generously, but not to the extent that those who depend on the givers (their families, for example) must go without having their basic needs met. Give until it hurts, but don't give so that it hurts your family and/or relatives who need your financial support."
I used to enjoy Stanley's sermons, for years.
Sometime in the last couple of years, Stanley's sermons began to rub on me the wrong way.
(Not just Stanley rubs me the wrong way these days, but most TV preachers and Christianity in general too, but I wanted to discuss Stanley on this page and reply to a few comments I saw.)
This particular segment, where Stanley told the woman that her husband should tithe, and that he will not because he's selfish and sinful - I was appalled by Stanley's response.
I saw the episode when it first aired on television.
A few years ago, I looked Stanley's name up online, and one or two sources said he makes something like $300,000 a year (maybe 400K), but whatever the exact amount, I recall it was a six figure one. It was a huge amount.
What does any preacher do that merits $100K or more a year?
All preachers do is give a sermon once a week. They may occasionally offer counseling to members. But I see nothing that justifies over $100K a year.
But anyway, what galls me is when Stanley lectures people on tithing and money, especially now in our difficult economy, when some are unable to find employment, and he gives these kinds of sermons every so often.
Who is he, who is earning $300k or more
a year, to give patronizing or shame-based sermons to his audience that they should fork over more of their money to his (or any) church, or to any religious-based organization?
Not every one out there is earning a cushy $300K a year like he is.
Just because you pray and trust God does not mean if you fork over your money to a church that God will somehow pay your rent for you, or provide in other ways, or reimburse you for whatever money you give a church.
And that even despite those comments from Christ about "Seek ye first..."
Not all the promises in the Bible come true for all Christians all the time, regarding finances or other topics. That is a hard truth many preachers refuse to address in their sermons.
To Anonymous May 7, 2012 10:53 AM:
Let's be fair.
It's not just some greedy Southern Baptist pastors who love money, it's a lot of conservative evangelicals of other denominations, or pastors/leaders of non-denominational churches, too.
To Anon May 7, 2012 12:46 PM:
I disagree. Some of Stanley's teaching is biblical; not all of it is un-biblical
Even the biblical content can be problematic though, because Stanley applies it incorrectly.
To WD: I have left comments on your blog before, but I'm a very infrequent visitor here.
I never remember what screen names I've used before when I've posted here, sorry. Thank you for allowing me to post here.
I have other posts I want to make, but wanted to break them up into several short ones, instead of making one big long one.
(I figure shorter posts would be easier for people to read.)
I'll sign my name as "OvergrownThicket," but the blog might register my name as "Anonymous."
To someone who said divorce is a sin. I don't agree that it is per se.
I think a lot of Christians get teachings on divorce wrong. (I've never married, so I have never divorced, so I don't have a personal agenda here. I'm over 35 years old.)
However, there are books and blogs by Christian authors which expound on the topic of divorce which explain that Jesus was not limiting divorce and re-marriage only to cases of sexual sin and death.
I think holding to this attitude that divorce is a huge sin does a great harm to Christians (usually females) who are in abusive marriages.
On forums and blogs about domestic violence, I have seen many Christian women who talk about how they stayed trapped in physically or emotionally abusive marriage for ten, twenty, thirty years because of this unbiblical, cruel teaching that divorce is always wrong, no matter what (other than for adultery).
A lot of churches incorrectly advise abused women who come to them for help to stay with the neanderthal who is abusing them.
These poor women are actually commanded or instructed to "submit to" the jerk even more! That does nothing to halt the abuse. (Most experts in the area of domestic violence tell these women to leave the abuser.)
I do find it a little annoying when a divorced pastor (such as Stanley) presumes to lecture other Christians about marriage and divorce.
Pastor John Hagee, who has a weekly television series on Christian networks, is in the same position:
Hagree dumped his first wife for his current one, according to articles I've read, but he sometimes gives these very "fire and brimstone" sermons from his pulpit, where he strongly condemns divorce. He will pound his chubby fist on the lecturn screaming about the eeeeviiiils of divorce.
Yet I've not heard Hagee also mention from the pulpit during these rants that he's divorced.
New BBC Open Forum said... "And of course, if you're like Charles Stanley and your car falls apart, you can just sit back and wait for a wealthy church member to give you a new one (begins around the 5-minute mark)."
That one really grates on me, but it's not just Stanley who has done this.
I've seen a few other television pastors say the same thing, including Bayless Conley (his show is called "Answers" and comes on every Sunday).
Conley has said a time or two on his show that he felt God tell him to give away one of his cars (or to sell it. I may be getting some details wrong, because it's been a long while since I've heard him tell this story), and he said God told him to donate the funds from the car to his church, or to some other kind of Gospel ministry outreach.
So, Conley sold his car, but he didn't want to.
But, he said, a few weeks later, some wealthy guy was visiting his church and just gave him, totally free of charge, a brand new car (I think it was a Lexus).
The point he was trying to get across is that people need to trust God with their money and possessions even if it means giving it away, and if they do, God will reimburse them.
Not that I'm in total disagreement with that concept, but I don't think because he's claiming God directed him specifically to sell one of his cars, that this should be made into a directive for all members of his church or television audience.
I've seen a few other TV pastors tell similar stories.
They say God told them to sell money or a house for a church cause, and God later gave them a brand new car or home.
Maybe God did - but I don't think this principle applies to all Christians.
I am very suspicious of pastors (or turned off by ones) who tell these kinds of stories, and all to make their congregations feel guilted or pressured to give money to their church.
This "God told me to sell my car so that I could give the money to the church" story is used quite a bit by different pastors.
anonymous from Lousiana
When was the last time you went to McDonalds and ordered a hamburger, then the nice waitress came and gave it to you and said you would not have to pay for it, since they decided from now on all food would be free and that they would "trust God to keep the restaraunt going"--who needs money to pay utility bills, employees, overhead, etc..., anyway. Or, they would only charge customers who said they "believed in paying for their hamburger", and not those that didn't believe they should have to. How long do you think the place would be able to stay opened?
Everyone is always trying to get something for nothing... why not extend that attitude to the church, right? By the way, what in the world does Charles Stanley being divorced have to do with you or I obeying the Word of God in the first place? And those of you who think it is okay to attend one church because it's more convenient, yet you send the money you would have given to another ministry instead; would you go to eat at McDonalds,not pay, and then walk across the street to Burger King to pay the bill? I am a tither, and my husband is not. I pray for him, he is a great husband, but he is responsible for his walk with God, and I am responsible for mine. If a man does not object to his wife tithing, she should tithe on her own income. God will not hold her responsible if tithing would cause friction in the marriage, since the man is supposed to be the spiritual leader in the home, but the Lord knows each and every situation completely.
@ Anon from Louisiana
"what in the world does Charles Stanley being divorced have to do with you or I obeying the Word of God in the first place?"
I brought it up because it's annoying that divorced preachers such as Stanley and John Hagee are so legalistic about divorce when they themselves have been divorced.
And they don't mention during their anti-divorce screeds that they have been divorced themselves.
These type of preachers typical advice, that abused women should not divorce, but stay with their abuser is cruel, wrong, dangerous and not scriptural.
The new Testament is a new convenent with God when Jesus(Yeshua) died and rose from the grave. No where in the New Testament does God command a tithe to early Christian churches. Tithe means 10% of income, and was from Mosaic Law to tithe to the tribe of Levi. When Jesus rose again, we are no longer bound by the old testament Moses law. If you break one of those laws, you break them all. We as Christains are not bound by the Law.
There is no curse for "NOT TITHING 10% of your salary" in the New Testament church (as is often implied on false teachings sermons to base their tithing from Malachi 3:10-12) Tithing was part of Mosaic law under Moses in the Old testament. Christians who insist on keeping the Law of Moses or part of it are under a curse. Gal 3:10 All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law."
When these TV preachers tell you HAVE to give 10% or lose God's blessings, this is spiritual blackmale so these rich preachers can get richer, take first class trips to Israel, cruises to Alaska, fancy cars, expensive suits, and lavish lifestyles. However, while we try to do what they say is God's will, it robs us of our future's retirement savings, our kids college funds, food for the table, mortgage payments. light bills, or creates credit card debt to support their lifestyle.
Giving in the New Testament asks to give from the heart what they can afford to give to those in need. It does not mention a requirement to any church. I give as directly as I can to those in need.
A true Christian minister tries to live the life of Jesus. He met people at their homes, he traveled modestly on foot, his church were his followers-- not a 10 million dollar cathedral needing 10 million dollars every year to support the building expenses, he had no place to lay his head, he gave what was extra from donations to the poor directly, he preached without begging for money, he was not a non-profit 501C organizational business, he had only one set of clothes not tons of $1900 suits, and probably had a cup and a bowl for possessions, yet this humble man Jesus changed the world!
Now why can't most preachers and ministers be like Jesus? They have been tempted by greed and gave into it. It shows in their false teachings in tithings for the church.
Well Said anonymous. People also forget to read Malachi 1.1 "The Burden of the Word of the Lord to ISRAEL.....Mosaic covenant. We are not under this Law. We are under are Greater Law..Giving...
As long as I can remember I have given to God, but when I reached a higher understanding I began to tithe, now I not only tithe, but also give offerings, why? To help the poor and needy and so God's Word can go out, so that ministers such as Charles Stanley can continue to spread the Gospel, and so that the church building needs can be met or that anyone who has a need it can be met...I don't do it to "expect" God to increase my income, but I can tell you this, God has blessed my income, a lot, and I believe it's because I am tithing!! Don't tithe if you don't want to, but one day you will stand in judgement for how you spent the money God gave you!
I think you totally misconstrued his mention of unfaithfulness to include adultery, you would have to understand the messenger to understand what this is referring to!! Your just another Gospel hater!!
I found myself laughing out loud as I read this. The writer shows how crazy tithing must seem to people who have not been convicted to tithe (Yes, a lot of us had a lot of things to be taught by GOD before we were ready for the word TITHE) or have not tithed as an act of obedience to see how GOD blesses obedience. I am happily married for 22 years to a husband who GOD has not convicted to tithe, YET! I am not worried that he is an adulterer, or selfish, or any of those other things that made me laugh. When looking for answers, go straight to GOD. Through his word and the Holy Sprit, you will never be left without an answer. While raising 6 children; I have found that when GOD asks me to do something that I think is impossible, he is testing my obedience and showing me that he can make all things possible. He's building my faith and getting me ready for the next impossible. God doesn't need me understanding how everything works, he just needs me to be willing to do anything he says and then he can show me how he can make everything possible. Even though I thought I knew what my husband must be thinking about tithing, this writer made me understand him better and laugh more than I've laughed in a long time (my youngest son came in the room to see what could be so funny about Charles Stanley. I have been encouraged throughout my life by Charles Stanley's sermons. I would not want to end my post without acknowledging that I have listened to him since I was 20 years old and his teachings encouraged me to seek GOD's will through many years as a wife and mother. I will choose, because the holy spirit has led me, to be submissive to my husband and wait for him to be convicted to tithe; knowing that GOD is in control and his timing is perfect.
I would have thought that the New Testament principle is that all that we have and are should be considered to belong to God, to be used in accordance with his revealed will. The teaching that we should give a fixed 10% to the church in the hope (faith?) of receiving material abundance from God in return, appears to be totally at odds with New Testament principles.
But Dr Stanley appears to have other sources of "truth", as evidenced by the following extract from Wikipedia: "Stanley joined the staff of First Baptist Church of Atlanta in 1969 and became senior pastor in 1971. As a young pastor, he was given the motivational book Think and Grow Rich. He has written, "I began to apply the principles of that book to my endeavors as a pastor, and I discovered they worked!" He also wrote, "For years, I read Think and Grow Rich every year to remind myself that the truth of God is not just for one career field. It is for all manner of work and ministry."
Seems to say it all..?
Hi...you can't serve two gods, it's either GOD YAHWEH or money. Money is represented as a god because it has immense power over the ones that live with greed. Money shouldn't have power over us if we believe in Yahushua Messiah (Jesus Christ) as the true son of our Father GOD YAHWEH. We should trust in GOD to provide for us as in any situation, either it be food, clothes or things that we should need to survive. Our faith should be strong in his word by us not just listening to pastors or preachers but by us reading & understanding the Holy Bible. We can not expect for them to be perfect in every way for they are humans just like us & we all fall in different ways, that's why we have to remember to ask for forgiveness when we do with a true heart of repentance. Please do not judge one another with imperfections or curses but live by Yahushuas teachings as he asked us to live. What we do here on earth one day we will have to answer for our faults & whoever uses GODS word to defame him & use it for their own pursuit of power Christ will be his judge, not us. Stay strong in GODS word & don't let others lead you astray.
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