TITHING vs OFFERING... God's Gateway to Blessing
"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver."
2 Corinthians 9:6-7 (NIV)
Controversy abounds concerning offering amounts given to God through the local church. However, they key focus for any believer should be God’s blessing . . . how much of God’s blessing do you desire? In the passage above, the Apostle Paul sets the benchmark and sets the motivation factor for giving; give sparingly/reap sparingly, give generously/reap generously: but above all give cheerfully.
Concerning the link between our giving and God’s blessing, the critical question becomes: “What does GOD consider a generous offering compared to a sparse offering?” The standard benchmark in Scripture for generous giving is the TITHE; 10% of one’s earnings. Some claim that the ‘tithe’ was part of the Old Testament Mosaic Law and therefore not relevant to Christ Followers today. However, the practice of tithing pre-dates the Mosaic Law: It has consistently been God’s benchmark for faithful and generous giving.
Offerings are gifts given above and beyond the tithe; sure to spur God’s extended favor. Offerings can include, but are not limited to, financial gifts, benevolence to others, financial support to world and local Missionary initiatives, as well as the allocation of our time for the Lord’s work. One thing is certain, “WE CAN NEVER OUTGIVE GOD!”
"And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work."
2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV)