Friday: Further Thought – Impact of Tithing

Further Thought: It is so easy to forget that every breath, every heartbeat, every moment of our existence comes only from the Lord. In Acts Chapter 17 Paul talks to the Athenians about the true God, who is not only the Creator (the “God that made the world and all things therein” [Acts 17:24]) but also the Sustainer (“For in Him we live and move and have our being” [Acts 17:28, NKJV]).

Spectacles on Bible

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The Athenians didn’t know about the true God. We as Christians do, and this realization must be central to how we live. God has many claims on us, and as a result, we have to live in accordance with those claims:

“So it is with God’s claims upon us. He places His treasures in the hands of men, but requires that one tenth shall be faithfully laid aside for His work. He requires this portion to be placed in His treasury. It is to be rendered to Him as His own; it is sacred and is to be used for sacred purposes, for the support of those who carry the message of salvation to all parts of the world. He reserves this portion, that means may ever be flowing into His treasure house and that the light of truth may be carried to those who are nigh and those who are afar off. By faithfully obeying this requirement we acknowledge that all belongs to God.” – Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6, p. 386.

Discussion Questions:

  1. “Time is rapidly passing into eternity. Let us not keep back from God that which is His own. Let us not refuse Him that which, though it cannot be given without merit, cannot be denied without ruin. He asks for a whole heart; give it to Him; it is His, both by creation and by redemption. He asks for your intellect; give it to Him; it is His. He asks for your money; give it to Him; it is His.” – Ellen G. White, The Acts of the Apostles, p. 566. What does Ellen G. White mean when she says, “Let us not keep back from God that which is His own . . . though it cannot be given without merit, cannot be denied without ruin”? What do we rob ourselves of when we do not tithe?
  2. Dwell more on the idea of all church members doing with the tithe whatever they want; that is, sending it to whichever cause they deem worthy, as opposed to the “storehouse.” Why is this such a bad idea? What would happen to our church? Why would such actions help bring about a terrible fracturing among us?
  3. In Luke Chapter 21, Jesus commended the widow for giving her money to the temple despite all the corruption that He knew was going on there. What should that say to those who feel that they can divert their tithe because they have questions about how it is being used?

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Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons