One of the pillars of Christian life is tithing and in this article, I will discuss why I tithe and what benefits I got out of it.
What is a tithe, anyway. Tithing means to give to God a tenth of what you earn. Although 'give' is not exactly the correct term and I will discuss this later.
First, I tithe because God commanded it. A lot of Christians today would say that they give, but they don't give a tenth, citing that we are under the New Testament and tithing is an Old Testament practice. I bring my tithe, and if I want to give, I give.
Second, I tithe to help advance God's Kingdom. For those who tithe, the recipient is usually the church from which a person receives spiritual nourishment. The tithe is intended to support your church and the causes they believe God wants it to pursue.
Third, I tithe because everything I own belongs to God. Notice that I don't say I give my tithe - instead I bring my tithe. I can't give what I do not own so tithing is actually bringing to God a portion of what He owns.
Fourth, I tithe because I have found joy in doing so. This is something I can't fully explain. When I give gifts, I feel happy because I am able to give to others and made them happy as well. But when I tithe, there is a joy that I feel. But why do I feel joyful when I am just bringing to God a tenth of what He already owns?
So what have I gotten out of tithing? Three things come to mind immediately:
First, tithing brought me into a joyful relationship with God. It has brought me to a place of surrender although I would readily admit that tithing was a big challenge. It is only by His grace that I am able to do so.
Second, tithing reminds me constantly that God owns everything and when He wills, He can give me more material wealth to steward for Him. Ever since I became a tither, I have seen increase in responsibility which came with increase in financial standing as well. Now, I am looking at other talents that He gave me from which He can receive a return as well.
Third, tithing has allowed me to see that I am indeed rich. By worlds standards, I may not be rich, but I am a son of the One who owns everything and that makes a big difference.
There is an often-quoted verse in the Bible about tithing and I have always found it encouraging because it is the only verse in the Bible that God challenges us to test Him:
"Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the LORD Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it." - Malachi 3:10 NIV
I hope that you find this encouraging as well.
Peace to you.