I get this question asked all the time as I counsel and coach people. What are your thoughts? I'd love to hear some different perspectives from the group then I'll weigh in on how I respond.

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Thanks for sharing your story.

I see the Love of God transcending requirements. I try to imagine, if I had a perfect father ( and our God Is..), what would he say and do? And I see what happened in your story to be in line with exactly that, " ..Its Okay, I dont need it, Go and sort out and when done come we will talk about it...."

No condemnation, Just relief and love. Under the circumstances I would have ABSOLUTELY no reason for resentment to say BUT LORD I WAS PAYING UP SO WHY?? I wasnt going to say much..Just May the Lord continue opening doors for more than full recovery to level of blessing Ministries greater than before.

Noel Miskovsky said:
I have something to say to this but please understand that this is just what went on with me. One thing I know now is that an individual relationship with our precious and all powerful God is and should be deeply personal. If you spend time with Him, seek Him, pray, talk to Him, read about Him and be willing to really listen and hear even the things that you might not like, He will speak to you. So anyway, our family was in a really bad mess, too long to go into here, but it was a real mess. In the middle of it I had to sell something really precious to me to keep utilities on and eat. I had been a hard core tither for 3 years, giving 11% and more at times but no less than 10%. I made 6 figures so I was tithing a nice amount into various ministries. Our fall was hard and fast and we were broke. Pause here, you may think well if you were tithing then how could that happen to you? Well that is too long to go into as well but know this- I wouldn't trade our crash and burn for anything. We needed it, we needed to learn some things, we did it to ourselves. I do however give God and perhaps tithing credit for some of the amazing things that happened during our fall. Anyway, long story short, I had to sell this thing and if I tithed we still wouldn't have enough to keep utilities on and get food. I was driving into my car and began to tear up and ask God what to do. At that moment I really believe God spoke to me and said "Noel, honey, you are okay. I don't need it, go get your finances in order and then we'll talk about tithing again. I know where your heart is." So I didn't tithe on that. Now, I realize this flies in the face of what almost any public preacher or evangelist would say, but I'm telling you it's personal. That was about 4 months ago. I have already started easing back into giving but much more careful now. Trying to use more discernment in my giving. And we are not out of the woods yet, things are still hard, so I didn't wait for it to get good again. That's not faith. God loves us, He is for us, not against us. The short answer to the question is yes, i do think we should continue to give and tithe while trying to get out of debt. But again, go deep with Him, He will tell you what to do.
The early christain church had no large buildings to support or a paid clergy and has no command to pay a certain amount. it was to be decided by the individual. but they where committed to spread the the goodnews of the kingdom of god with christ as our ransom and king. their money was used to support this effort by them selves and to help others to do likewise. many things change as christainty went international from what would work for the nation of israel.
celebrations of the new moon, tithing, circumsion, dietary and sabbath laws were not restated. would have been imposible for a roman slave to follow but his loyalty to christ and the kingdom could continue regardless of country or social status.

Dave Radetsky said:
The real question is what is a tithe? You can't answer if you should tithe until you understand what the bible says about it. Grace Ministries put out an article a while back on the topic and the following is what cleared the confusion for me.

Two kinds of giving are taught consistently throughout Scripture: giving to the government (always compulsory), and giving to God (always voluntary).

The issue has been greatly confused, however, by some who misunderstand the nature of the Old Testament tithes. Tithes were not primarily gifts to God, but taxes for funding the national budget in Israel.

Because Israel was a theocracy, the Levitical priests acted as the civil government. So the Levite's tithe (Leviticus 27:30-33) was a precursor to today's income tax, as was a second annual tithe required by God to fund a national festival (Deuteronomy 14:22-29). Smaller taxes were also imposed on the people by the law (Leviticus 19:9-10; Exodus 23:10-11). So the total giving required of the Israelites was not 10 percent, but well over 20 percent. All that money was used to operate the nation.

All giving apart from that required to run the government was purely voluntary (cf. Exodus 25:2; 1 Chronicles 29:9). Each person gave whatever was in his heart to give; no percentage or amount was specified.

New Testament believers are never commanded to tithe. Matthew 22:15-22 and Romans 13:1-7 tell us about the only required giving in the church age, which is the paying of taxes to the government. Interestingly enough, we in America presently pay between 20 and 30 percent of our income to the government--a figure very similar to the requirement under the theocracy of Israel.

The guideline for our giving to God and His work is found in 2 Corinthians 9:6-7: "Now this I say, he who sows sparingly shall also reap sparingly; and he who sows bountifully shall also reap bountifully. Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver."
Absolutely. And, maybe even more than you usually do! I explain this in my book, Save Yourself! The Plain Truth, but here's the short answer: God owns everything. He gives you everything you need. You "pay" him "rent" for using his planet, air, water, etc. by taking care of others less fortunate than you (and there's always someone less fortunate).

If you don't pay your "rent" to God, you get evicted from the expensive rental property and have to move to cheaper digs. Each time you aren't faithful about paying your "rent," you move down a notch until others are giving to you, and you finally get it. "It" is that other people need your help and can't survive without it. Give, give, give.

Debt is nothing compared to not having basic necessities (food, water or shelter). Cut back on your lifestyle, let go of the big house, fancy car or whatever else is causing the debt. We can live on much less than we think we can. Think of how tribal cultures have no permanent home, possessions they care on their back and no need to store food. God takes care of them. The world causes debt, giving releases the world's hold on us. The more you give, the faster you are free!
While I agree with most on the Forum relating to Tithes, there is one thing that I would ad. If a monetary Tithe is a stretch, don't do it. God wants us to give cheerfully, not out of burden.
If money is tight, give of your time. Time to the Church, the community, volunteer groups, youth centers, just go out and let your Light shine.
Ed, I know that our Father appreciates where your heart is at, but He does state that the tithe (tenth) should come from your income. That would be what you bring home, I personally believe it's on the gross, but too each... Anyway, if you are having to tap your personal savings to keep your business afloat because of you're tithing on something that, the way I see it, is not yet yours, then maybe it's not the correct thing to do. God isn't an embezzler and you shouldn't have to cover up for him. IMHO
As far as whether to keep tithing while getting out of debt I would have to say yes. It should be line one in the budget followed by food, shelter (including utilities), transportation, and clothing. A tithe (tenth) is not the same as giving, which is any above the tenth. Giving is not something that you can afford to participate in if you are in debt. Giving, for me, is actually serving God. This is why it is so important to get out of debt as you cannot serve two masters.

Ed Finnerty said:
Hi Jay,
I love this question, since I have been wrestling with this issue for two weeks.
My wife and I have always tithed and given a little more and have really seen God's blessing on our personal finances. Now that I have my own consulting business, I have decided to tithe again on the the business income. Here is where it really makes you rely on God. When expenses are more than income, do you continue to tithe each month and go into your personal savings to pay your business expenses and tithe.
It comes down to trust, faith, and relationship. I have been wrestling with this issue since I know to tithe but see the check book going below zero. What I have noticed, is that my prayer life wasn't as strong and my relying on God was not as strong. Sometimes God allows these situations into our lives because he wants so much more than our Money(tithe), we wants a close, intimate relationship with us. When we joyfully tithe, we are trusting him and saying, I love you and belive you will take care of all my needs. ( Help me to do my part, while you do your part.)
Ed Finnerty
When things are at their worst, tithe. This is a critical time to show faithfulness with your first fruits.
titheing is new testament-matthew 23:23. if titheing was not for the here and now how would the great commission get fullfilled? god could make the rocks talk but he wants us to do it! the tithe is 10% of your increase so for most people who work for someone the simpliest way would be the gross if you have your own business you might not even have a 10% profit margin so to get your increase you would deduct business expenses. living expenses would be part of your increase.

in malichi chapter 3 it clearly spells out if you choose not to tithe and give offerings god lays on your heart that god views
this as stealing. you would be better of stealing from me. if you steal from me i'm not afraid to hold you accountable why would god be? according to barna research 97% of christians don't tithe-no wonder we have so many problems.

the bible also talks about the better ground ministry the money goes into the better the blessing. just like a better investment can eventually give you better returns.
Hi Jay,

This is my stance on tithing: ALWAYS tithe no matter what your financial situation. I am a strong believer in tithing. I believe God can only give to you (how He would like to) if you give to Him (at minimum the tithe). I think no matter what your financial situation, you should give beyond the tithe (which should go to your local church or wherever you worship and are fed spiritually) and give to the kingdom of God, to charities, to individuals, basically give until it hurts to God's work as well as to simply those who need it. I believe that it is the giving beyond the tithe that allows God to release the good things He has in store for us to us. So to answer the question, yes I think you should tithe (and give beyond the tithe as well) while trying to get out of debt. God bless...

Miss J
Tithing helps you stay focused, and is what will help you get out of debt..
This has been such a fruitful discussion! It is great to see so many opinions, strategies, thoughts, and questions. I believe the ultimate answer is found when you seek God out, read His Word, pray, and let Him lead. I personally believe we should tithe at all times! However, it is a personal choicebetween you and God.
Does helping one's poor relatives count to one tithing. I give my relatives the equivalent of 7% of my income every month and send about 3% to my church. What do you think?
It's more than ok to share! Thanks Olga for providing this. That's why this group is so great...so many resources!

Olga Hermans said:
I believe the tithe establishes the covenant that we have with God. We do our part and God does His part! He will multiply our money; that means that we can do much more with our money that is left (90%) than normal if we weren't tithing. That is the promise that we can experience when we are faithful. God loves it when we tithe in faith; that means that when we come to Jesus with our tithe; we should expect that that He will pay all our bills according to His riches in Glory by Christ Jesus. The kingdom of God works completely opposite of the world system. He is our source in everything.
I found this little video here and I would like to share it. It's a bout tithing!
Hope that is ok with everybody!



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