2 Samuel 16:9,11 - "Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? Let me go over, I pray thee, and take off his head...let him alone, and let him curse; for the Lord hath bidden him."

Matthew 7:15 - “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.

Matthew 24:11 - “…and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.”

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Professor Watchdog Issues a "Reverse Tithing Challenge" - Give NOTHING to Your Church, See if God Indeed Curses You!

As I promised a few days ago, here is my tithing challenge for church members whose pastors again this year trot out the same old tithing phoney-baloney sermons.

Your pastor will probably use Malachi 3 to tell you to "test God" by giving 10% of your income to God (meaning giving 10% to your pastor's employer, the 501(c)3 he works for).

But why give 10% as the "test"? There are two parts of this tithing teaching out of Malachi that can be tested: one is that if you tithe, God will "open the windows of heaven" and you'll reap financial rewards. The other part is that if you DO NOT tithe, that God will curse you and your finances. One of my former pastors even said that "God collects" and God will get the un-tithed money you owe him through calamity he will bring your way, such as leaking roofs, wrecked cars, etc. I never figured out how God would collect the money I pay my roofer or my auto mechanic, unless maybe they attended the same church and THEY tithed...but I digress.

So don't tithe to see if God will bless you; instead, let your pastor know you've decided to give NOTHING to the church, to withhold what you were giving, and to cut it to zero, to test God and see if he curses you like the pastor claims. That is a much easier way to test God in this area, because presumably you are ALREADY receiving blessings - it will be much easier to detect a blessing decrease as you give nothing.  Be sure to let your pastor know that you appreciate him giving you the challenge, but you've decided to stop giving until God curses you. Tell your pastor if God does curse you, you will resume giving at the 10% level.

This reverse tithe challenge has a number of benefits to you, the church, and all of Christianity:

1. You can experience the freedom to be a blessing to other people with that money you were giving to the church. You can donate it to another Christian organization, or you can use it to bless your immediately family by paying someone's rent, or buying a new set of tires for your spouse, or even take a much needed trip or cruise to mend a strained marriage or relationship. YOU decide what you will do with it!

2. Your church won't have the burden of possibly raising their spending in response to members' tithes only to have to return it all when God doesn't bless. This reverse tithing challenge will instead require them to tighten their financial belts while they wait for you and others to see if God will keep his word and heap coals of cursings on your head. If God keeps his promise and curses you as your pastor says will happen, then your pastor and staff can rejoice that God cursed you while you reluctantly "bring the tithe" to remove the curse. What a day of rejoicing that will be!

3. God might actually REALLY bless you when he sees you've decided to use your money more for what he really wants it used for: helping people in need, taking care of your family, planning for your future so you can meet needs in the future...rather than using it for lavish buildings and to pay salaries of professional religious men who haven't yet learned a marketable trade.

Anyways, why give your 3% or 5% to the church when the man of God is telling you that you are still cursed since you aren't meeting some phony 10% threshold? Use your charitable contributions to bless other ministries that will actually thank you for being a blessing, instead of one that pronounces cursings on you because you didn't give enough.

So give it a try, church members. It is a novel, fresh, innovative way to put God to the test as he says to do in Malachi 3! But be sure to let your pastor know that you're taking "Watchdog's Reverse Tithing Challenge"!

Of course we already know what the outcome of this "challenge" will be. The only "curse" involved will be the reduction in revenue at your 501(c)3 - THAT is the real curse that your "man of God" fears, and it is what drives him to preach such nonsense. A perfect example of how much these men of God fear this curse is this quote from Stovall Weems in his tithing sermon last month entitled "Yes, the Church Wants Your Money":

"When you get that check, when you get that $2000 check, before you look at your bills, before you do anything else, before you even know if you have enough money to do that, you take $200 and you bring your tithe - to Jesus, through the house of God, your local church."

Stovall and those like him don't want you to even think about or budget your giving. This is greed that knows no bounds. They want - they need - you to blindly give the first chunk of your income before you even consider caring for your own family's needs. It is sick and twisted.

When you get down do the bottom line, THIS is the curse that currently exists in the church, that greedy men twist the Bible to raise revenue at their church.

Break the real curse, by taking the Watchdog's Reverse Tithing Challenge.


Anonymous said...

LOL! Now that's a "tithing" challenge I will like to see!

Anonymous said...

LOL! Now that's a "tithing" challenge I will like to see!

Anonymous said...

I would issue an additional challenge and it is this: For those of you who are actually tithing (I mean really, really giving 10% gross, on every bit of income you get, every time, all the time, year after year.) you need to tell us the truth about whether your tires get worn out and you have to replace them, whether you or your loved ones ever get sick, has anyone in your family died recently, what about any of your friends or fellow church members, has an appliance ever needed replaced, ever have a car wreck, kids ever rebel, ever have financial difficulty?

Answer: Of course! And if not, it WILL happen eventually to YOU too. All that tithing won't change life's challenges one single bit. So it is nonsense for a preacher to tell you (while he speaks for God) that by tithing you will get some kind of "return on your investment" like he is offering some kind of mob payment protection.

And also, I challenge you to compare your "blessings" with those who don't tithe, or who don't believe at all. Pretty clear they have many more of these "blessings" than you, correct. So your preacher is a liar. Give generously to help others and those that do work that helps others. But don't "pay the tithe" to your pastor's budget.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Readers, I do apologize, I was a bit late on my tithing challenge. Stovall Weems, pastor at Celebration Church, probably the largest church in Jacksonville, already delivered his tithing sermon entitled "Ten Truths About Tithing", which are in reality ten lies about tithing. It is sad to see a good man like Stovall resort to such coercion to get people to give to his church.

At the end of the sermon, Stovall put forth a seven week money-back-guarantee that if you tithe and after seven weeks aren't blessed, he'll return the tithe money to you.

So Celebration Church members, please take the Watchdog Reverse Tithing Challenge, and let Stovall know you are putting God to the test.

Ramesh said...

The underlying theme of this post is very interesting to me. Not so much of tithing, but how to determine if the hand of God is present in one's life. To identify such acts of God in one's life, you have to weed out natural causations and assign to God things you can not identify as rationally occurring causation of events. But it can be done. It is slow and one has to be open to the realm of all possibilities to identify the hand of God in one's life.

I am certain that in most SBC churches, if a person went and told his pastor that he/she was withholding the tithe to see if God will punish them ... The following will occur:

1. Pastor and the Church finance committee (and possibly all the other Christians in that Church) will pray imprecatory prayers on your behalf. So much for Christian love. Why do I know this? One can see how Christians LOVE bloggers when they criticize their favorite pastors on blogs.

2. There is a good possibility that lot of Christians will become atheists. For they will not see the hand of God or see God's blessings in their life that occur without rationally explainable causes for those events. I am afraid one's faith will be tested.

Does this mean that this should not be tried? This area is one of the fundamental weakness of the Christians, where they are unable to ascertain blessings that are not explainable by naturally occurring or logically caused.

My bottom line is my faith is only in Christ. This faith of mine is not my ability to have faith, that I believe something will or will not happen, for my faith in myself is very weak. BUT when I am placing my faith in Christ, I am on solid ground.

Anonymous said...

Think about what your "tithe" to "God/Jesus" is being spent on. Just look at the campus and buildings your church sits on. They built every bit of that with donations from Christians. How many businesses in town have assets like your church? Yet businesses EARN/CREATE wealth and profits by offering tangible services and did not build all that with YOUR money. And more importantly, they actually USE the space for productivity, NOT to just have a "worship service" one day a week. What a total inefficient waste of money. If your company built such a structure on such a campus only to use it one day a week for a couple of hours, they would go out of business. It is not sustainable. UNLESS, someone convinces you that the invisible sky fairy wants you to pay for it. That is a tough sell to anyone except the most gullible and manipulated among us. Stop paying for that excess. Give to people that need your help, in the name of Jesus. Jesus is not impressed with the millions in your budget that go to buildings and salaries and programs that benefit you and your kids. That is not why He came. That should not be why you give. Please!

Anonymous said...

Thy Peace - the problem I am having is that my faith in Christ was based largely on the Bible and what preachers told me and explained to me what it said and how it applied to my life. I now see preacher's lying about what it says and how it applies in order to get money, power, fame, sex, etc. So like they always told me, "If you don't believe all of it, believe none of it." I am applying that to them: Since I can't believe them on the tithe, how can I believe them on salvation. I know them to be liars. And yet they don't back off on the tithing lies. They double down and get even more preposterous and outrageous in their lies and coercion. Is it all a scam?


Anonymous said...

COUNTDOWN: 81 days

That's when we will find out if the TROLL's prayers are in God's will or not.

Ramesh said...

Off Topic: Do not assume that Taliban are the only people who are dastardly. Some of the Christians would also pull back women in their education.

NYT > Opinion > Her ‘Crime’ Was Loving Schools

NYT > Opinion > Malala Yousafzai’s Courage

Anonymous said...

Could this work for those attending Harvest Bible Chapel in Chicago? It might not get HBC $65 million debt be reduced but it could open the eyes of some Kool-Aid drinker in Chicago. Read the latest blog about the elephants debt at the Blood Stained Ink blog.

Amazing all the corruption that goes on in Chicago. Maybe CEO Jack Welch was right about that town

Anonymous said...

Remember how in the movie Luther, the indulgence preachers would come to town to "scare the people" into buying an indulgence. I was thinking that that is exactly like these pastors do now days when they get some crusty old geezer to come and call people thieves for not tithing. These hireling liars are nothing more than a modern day indulgence preacher doing the dirty work for lying pastors. Some of whom cant preach a good sermon unless they plagiarize a commentary.

Anonymous said...

I stopped "tithing" years ago, and I have not been under a curse. How do I know? Because Jesus fulfilled the curse of the law for me when he was hung on the tree.

Galatians 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

But these pastors are putting their people under a curse because of tithing. How? Well if you try to keep the law (tithing was part of the law) then you are under a curse if you do not continue to keep ALL OF THE LAW!

Galatians 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.

So no matter what these thieves and robbers that fleece God's sheep say, we will not put ourselves under a curse to pad their greedy wallets.

Anonymous said...

Keep your day job.

It is not funny to degrade God's word.

Maybe it is a good thing that Mac kicked you out of our Church.

We don't need the devil any space.

Please check your heart...if you can find it.

Julie Anne said...

or even take a much needed trip or cruise to mend a strained marriage or relationship. YOU decide what you will do with it!

Hmm - - - - if you say so, Tom. Sounds good to me!

Anonymous said...

COUNTDOWN: 80 days

That's when we will find out if the TROLL's prayers are in God's will or not.

Anonymous said...

"Keep your day job."

Get a job.

"It is not funny to degrade God's word."

It is blasphemy to say God said something that he did not say.

"Maybe it is a good thing that Mac kicked you out of our Church."

I thought it was Jesus' church.

"We don't need the devil any space."

Satan loves false doctrine.

"Please check your heart...if you can find it."

Please check your mind...if you can find it.

Anonymous said...

My Dad is 87 years old. He lives with me because the duplex apartment he and mom lived in for 65 years was sold. My Dad drives a vehicle that I bought him because the car that he had kept breaking down and constantly had to be repaired. Dad owes over $60,000 in debt that he can never repay. Debtors are constantly calling him night and day. My Dad plays the lottery hoping to have enough money to not only pay off his bills but also me and my sisters bills. Dad doesn't have enough money to file for bankruptcy. I said all that to say that my Dad has been a Christian for over 60 years,gone to the same church for over 50 years and has been a tither all his years as a Christian. Dad use to give way more than 10% of his income to the church and also use to give money to Christian organizations. The Preacher at my Dads church told my Dad that he was give more than what he needed but Dad wanted Gods blessings on his life. I know sometimes my Dad can't understand why God hasn't blessed him financially like the Bible says he will but Dad keeps trusting that God will come through. That's why I sometimes get mad at God when I see someone like local preachers who are not half as righteous as my Dad live in nice homes(some even have 2 homes),drive nice cars and then tell their people that if you don't tithe that God will bring curses on you and will not bless you.

Ronnie said...

My name is Ronnie. I have already taken your tithing challenge watchdog. I was very angry when someone told me that I did not have to tithe. I set out studying the doctrine hoping to prove the guy wrong. Well, turns out I was wrong. The pastor of the religious business I was attending at the time, we'll call him reverend Extortion, told the church on a number of occasions that he did not know who tithes and who didn't. So I cut back on my giving. Well guess who ended up in the pastors office? Me! Imagine that!
Lie much, reverend?
So I decided then and there to take the tithing challenge. Right after I stopped, I got the biggest bonus check that I have ever got on my job. The Lord as my witness: In Jesus name I confess that I stopped tithing, and I got a $10,000 bonus check, and a $4800 raise shortly thereafter. I think God opened the wondows of heaven when I left the curse of the law and stopped tithing.

Anonymous said...

The Bible does not curse you for not giving a tithe. The blessing is with knowing that you are doing the responsible thing.

There is no doubt that a large number of "Christians" think the same way that you do...just let someone else pick up the tab...park on someone elses dime...act like a bunch of hogs under and acorn tree; eat and eat and eat and never look up to see where it is coming from.

The 53%

Arce said...

No one is saying that we should not give, and generously within our means, to help those Jesus commanded us in Matthew 25 to help. And no one is saying that we should give nothing to support a church we have chosen as our own place of worship, if that body is managing its finances wisely, as evidenced by open and reasonable finances, including salaries, nepotism rules, and the like.

But tithing is not a mandate of the NT, and a pastor preaching "tithe or suffer the consequences" is preaching a lie and deserves no support from the congregation at all.

My family, parents, siblings, and my wife and self, all have used a tithe as a guideline. When we received money beyond our needs, we gave more than a tithe. When times were tough, we struggled and gave as much as we could, even if less than a tithe.

But there was and is always food for a visiting preacher at our tables, or for a neighbor suddenly in financial trouble. Care and transportation to church for widows. And my remodeling projects have employed the homeless who came asking for work to have money to feed their children.

The tithe is not a biblical mandate. Only a heretic or a scoundrel would preach it.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Arce - perfectly stated.

Ramesh said...

Off Topic: ABP News > Online community as missions field

Anonymous said...

God deliver us from carnally-minded preachers who neglect to preach the truth! There's an insane form of thinking amongst the clergy that the only truth they should be concerned with is Biblical truth; but every preacher ought to search out and preach the truth about secular matters as well. For a pastor to preach on John 3:16 while totally ignoring TSA sticking their hands down people's pants is apostasy! They're sticking their hands into your wife's skirt to look for explosives? Homeland Security Thugs Force 95-Year Old Elderly Woman in Wheelchair to Remove Her Diaper. Only an apostate pastor would rally behind and support a criminal government.

If your pastor doesn't care about the blatant criminal takeover of our government, then you need to find another church. We are at spiritual war and most churches are hiding in the barracks. Criminals have taken over our government as President Kennedy warned 10 days before they killed him. It's the Goldman Sachs Gang, the Merrill Lynch Mob, the Citi Group criminals who are bankrupting our nation. They are not bankers, they are loan sharks! Study about the Federal Reserve thieves! 10,400,000 American Families are Sliding Toward Losing Their Homes in Foreclosure. Our journey into hell is almost complete as a nation. Censorship is very near! History evidences that evil, if allowed to go unchecked, brings a nation to ruin.

Mark said...

I have a new suggestion. The "Apostle Paul Challenge." This is based off of the 1 Corinthians 9 passage where Paul gives up his right of being supported by the churches that he is ministering to, so as to prevent his support from being a stumbling block to those he is teaching. I cannot imagine something that would speak greater volumes in the American evangelical culture, than for a pastor to give up his salary and to minister simply for the sake of the gospel. Of course many will say that Pastor XYZ who sold a bazillion copies of his book doesn't take a salary from his church. Let's try doing it before you earn millions selling books and other wares. So the "Apostle Paul Challenge" is for pastors to forego income for the entire year of 2013 and see what happens in their congregation. To see how God might lead them to give the abudance of funds and also how this encourages the flourishing of the gospel in the community around them.

Anonymous said...

Person with a 87 yeart old father. Don't be mad at God. The tithe stopped 2000 years ago. Be mad at these false pastors that want you back under the LAW of thr Old Testament!!!

Anonymous said...

Until I tithe, I'm in control. Until I tithe, I am saying about all of this money, "I did it." But God says that when you tithe, it is an acknowledgement that everything belongs to the Lord. Listen to this, Psalm 50 verse 10 - "For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills". Isn't that awesome? God said, hey its not yours, its Mine. I like what the Bible says, "Where were you when I put all of this together?" Well, I wasn't around Lord. 'Thats right, you weren't around, so whats the big deal here? I mean who's the big one? You're just the steward. I gave it to you; I can take it from you.'

Your tithe doesn't belong to your sick uncle. It belongs in God's storehouse, to spread the Good News to others ! You may say 'Well, I can't trust the folks at my church.' Well, then change churches. I wouldn't go to a church that I couldn't trust the leadership, I'd go somewhere else. Thats my suggestion. Then you can hear other folks saying I don't trust the leadership in that church. The issue here isn't trusting someone; the issue is you love that stinking stuff so much that you're going to keep it. What if you said to God "Give me ten and I'll give you one back." You know there was a man who did that, and I'm sure a lot more than just one. But this particular man I'm thinking of said "Lord, if you'll bless this business, I'll give you ten percent. I'll give you a tithe from everything that comes from it, and he did. By the time he died, he was giving God 90 percent and keeping 10, because God was giving him so much . His name was J.C. Penney.

Anonymous said...

Until I tithe, I'm in control. Until I tithe, I am saying about all of this money, "I did it." But God says that when you tithe, it is an acknowledgement that everything belongs to the Lord.

Hey, if God owns it all, then why is it so important that I give "back" to God what is already is. He already owns it, so why the need to give it back to him. It is his already!

And even if you can explain the above, tell me how I give it TO God. Is GOD the 501(c)(3) where me and my kids go? Or is giving to the poor giving to GOD. How is giving money to FBC Jax or Bellevue's multimillion dollar budget giving TO God? Sheesh!

Anonymous said...

This is hilarious!
Thanks for the early morning chuckle to start my day.
But it is so true - in a twisted way.
It almost makes me feel guilty - which I now recognize is the psychological effect of these professional religion salesmen have had on me.
And thank you for helping to expose these hucksters and their twisting of the scriptures. It is sad that even well-meaning, decent preachers of the Word have fallen for this legalistic claptrap.

Anonymous said...

I used to give 10% of my tithes to my church. But pastor always says, you have to give based on your gross, not on your net income, but i can't afford. And when i skipped a month to tithe, coz i have a lot of debts, he said, that blessings will stop! When, someone fooled me on my small business, which i shared to him, instead of praying for me, he said, GOD already sent pests to my crops. He did not say directly to me, but he added one day in his preach to church. I feel now, just obligated to give! I feel bad, everyone almost leaves this church. Now, i am stuck here, i felt bad to leave because there are only 12 people left. I
Am praying God to give me wisdom and strength to know what to do!