Regarding tithing, I believe that it was not really a command given in the
New Testament though there is still giving in the New Testament. There
are disciples who do not give their contribution or offering to God
because it is not in their heart, I just want to know how to correct them
in their attitude not being legalistic or even pressuring them to give.
Because what I believe, if you do not give back to God, you are stealing
or in short in sinned. Thanks for your reply.

You are correct in noticing that tithing (a giving of a tenth of
one’s gross income) is not commanded in the New Testament. Based on a
number of passages such as Colossians 2:13-15, the New Testament makes it
clear that disciples of Jesus are not subject to the laws of the Old
Testament. Therefore, strict tithing is not a requirement for
Christians. Period. Some ministers, in an attempt to give useful
guidelines have made a habit of mentioning 10% as a goal for contributing
for Christians on the assumption that disciples should be willing to give
at least as much as the Jews gave. This may seem like a helpful approach,
but it is a risky precedent to bring in Mosaic laws, even as a guideline,
as human beings tend toward legalism and rules in their personal worship
of God. Others have taken a further step and taught that tithing is a
matter of doctrine for followers of Jesus. This is not accurate use of
the New Testament.

It should not surprise us that if a believer has been taught the
unbiblical application of tithing as a doctrine, but later realize that
this teaching was not correct might overreact and pull back from giving,
perhaps even completely. I would suggest a dose of patience and careful
teaching, rather than rebuke for this person. His or her trust may need
to be rebuilt over a period of time. I would agree with you that giving
financially to take care of the needs of the church is not an option,
based on passages such as 2 Corinthians 8 and 9. “God loves a cheerful
giver.” “Each man should give ….” Not only does God expect us to
give, he expects us to give generously. He also tells us that at least on
some level, as we give, God will give to us. My advice to you is to show
the scriptures such as 2 Corinthians 8 and 9 to people on an individual
basis to reveal to them what God’s will is, but to exercise a level of
patience and understanding rather than in-your-face correction, given that
these people may be reacting to a past abuse.

John Oakes

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