A Look at Two Tithe Payers

Image result for Jesus watching the old lady two mites

In Mark 12:41-44 we read —

“Jesus sat down opposite the place where the offerings were put and watched the crowd putting their money into the temple treasury. Many rich people threw in large amounts. But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents.

Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.”

What a marvelous uplifting story of someone sold out to the Lord! Giving all she had to fulfill her duty. This story’s lesson is still applicable today. We shall look at two people who take two different directions in being faithful and unfaithful to the Lord. These examples are by no means unusual, but rather common today.

The first person we shall discuss is brother H.

He is from a very poor country in Africa. He currently is making just a few dollars a month (about the equivalent of 100.00 USA per month). He has been a present truth believer for 8 years. After studying the Scriptures and SOP message, he felt led by the Lord to continue studying, as the parable of the 10 virgins shows he needed “extra oil” to get to the kingdom.

But somewhere along the line brother H never took seriously the following SOP warning —

“Angels keep a faithful record of every man’s work, and as judgment passes upon the house of God, the sentence of each is recorded by his name, and the angel is commissioned to spare not the unfaithful servants, but to cut them down at the time of slaughter. And that which was committed to their trust is taken from them. Their earthly treasure is then swept away, and they have lost all. And the crowns they might have worn, had they been faithful, are put upon the heads of those saved by the faithful servants whose means was constantly in use for God.” (Testimonies, vol. 1, p.198)

Week after week passed by yet he continued to ignore the Lord’s treasury. He justified the missing of paying tithes as “I am poor and barely make expenses to live on, the Lord understands.” This brother H continues on his merry way thinking all is right and that the Lord is winking at his duty and making him an exception to returning the Lord’s money.

Again the Word of the Lord counsels —

“Should people cheat God? Yet you have cheated Me! “But you ask, ‘What do you mean? When did we ever cheat You?’ “You have cheated Me of the tithes and offerings due to Me.”(Mal. 3:8)

Brother H is still struggling 8 years later after accepting present truth. Often getting temporary jobs and then being let go to start all over again looking for work. The Lord’s promise, His Word, has not applied to brother H. Why? Because he has not done his part to keep the bargain that the Lord proposed.

“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the LORD of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing that there not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10)

Let’s now look at brother T.

He also is very poor, he is also from a poor country in Africa. Brother T has likewise accepted the Lord’s Elijah message and has believed now for 7 years. But he, unlike brother H, read in the Scriptures (Malachi), SOP (many places) and the Rod (many places) that we must be faithful in returning the Lord’s money back to Him. He took this very seriously as he counted it a duty that must not be neglected, lest he is found a slothful and unfaithful servant.

Brother T makes about 180.00 monthly sweeping and cleaning the streets for some of the local business shops. Six days a week he works, and it is hard labor. But he decided long ago that he would make meticulous bookkeeping of his income and expenses. Every week he lists all his expenses for that week and deducts it from his income. The net balance (aka — net increase) is only about 18 dollars. So at the end of the week he sends off about 20%-25% of that to cover his first and second tithes = 3.60 to 4.50 a week. He also sends in free-will offerings as often as possible.

Brother T has been blessed, not only has he had a steady reliable job but the owners have paid him faithfully and he can count it like clockwork that he will get his money at the end of the week. This is the Lord’s hand at work. For the Lord has moved upon the heart of all who are connected with brother T to “treat him right” and they do this. Not only that but he has received three unsolicited raises during his five years on this job.

As to the motivation, brother T was inspired by the Lord’s counsel when he read the following —

 

“IS SMALL INCOME TITHE EXEMPT?

Question No. 158:

   As my income is very small, am I not exempt from paying tithe?

Answer:

   God designed the plan of systematic benevolence so as to make it as equitable to the poor as to the rich, no more a tax on the mite than on the million. And we know of no Scriptural authority for exempting from tithe any income, however small. All, poor as well as rich, are given the privilege of returning to the Lord His own. Many with a “mite” income are paying both first and second tithe, and in return are receiving a rich bestowal of blessing.

   Thus reason forces the conclusion that if one is not obliged to receive charity help in addition to his income (whatever its source) to cover his living expenses, then for him not to pay tithe is to cheat Himself of the abundant blessing which attends a faithful regard for the royal privilege of being one of God’s stewards.”  (Answerer, vol. 5, p.86-87)


To be sure Satan has found many ways to bring up excuses as to why we don’t need to bother with paying tithes. Here is a shortlist of some of the common ones —

1 —  Your income is too small and you just don’t have any extra to pay the tithes.

2 —  You live in a poor country and the mailing alone will cost more than the tithe.

3 —  You find much wrong with the current SRod associations, they do this or that wrong and therefore they are unworthy of your tithes.

4 —  You make your own home the storehouse and because of this, you are allowed to pocket His tithes and even ask for donations. You spread the message yourself and therefore are entitled to the Lord’s money.

Of course, there are more reasons to justify being a thief, but the above four are very prominent reasons today. We’ve shown you how number 1 reason is dealt with, now let’s look at number 2.

The Lord in His all-seeing vision saw that the poor countries would have that problem–too small tithe based on income that doesn’t even take care of the postage in some cases. In other words, how can one send in their 5.00 check or money order when postage is 5.00 ? Not to worry.

For the last several years both of the two large SRod organizations have online donation links, that process the money in seconds free of charge. The one thing that the sender has to have is a bank account. The sender simply gives his bank info to the organization’s process server (it is very secure) and it is done in minutes. 

This avenue has been so simple and seamless that yours truly has used it for years with good success.

Here are the two links to the Mt. Dale and Waco organizations for tithe processing–

http://www.shepherds-rod-message.org/giving/giving.html

https://davidiantoday.org/en/donation/

Now as to number 3, again the Lord counsel’s us —

IS IT MY DUTY TO SET RIGHT THE LORD’S TREASURY?

Question No. 98:

   Should we pay our tithe to the “storehouse” if we know that it is not used rightly?

Answer:

   Knowing that our tithe belongs to God’s storehouse, our greatest burden should be to see that it is faithfully paid there. Nowhere in the Bible do we find that the Lord has laid upon any tithe payer the policing of the channels through which these funds pass.

   The Lord’s treasury is under His control, and if He Himself should not see fit to correct an abuse in the handling of His money, certainly we could not correct it however hard we might try. If we guard carefully that part of His work which He entrusts to us, our only concern will be to find out where His “storehouse” is, and then faithfully to deposit His money there. He has not made us responsible for its use; that, He will personally take over–even as He is now “taking the reins in His own hands.”

   When the Promised Land was divided among the twelve tribes of Israel, the tribe of Levi received no land for an inheritance, as did the eleven tribes. Instead, the Lord decreed that the tithes of the other tribes were to go to the Levites. This was their inheritance. It was actually their own. And just as they, as the tithe receivers, had no right to dictate to the others, the tithe payers, what to do with their own increase after it had been tithed, so the tithe payers had no right to dictate to the tithe receivers what to do with the tithe. Each tribe was itself to be accountable to the Lord for that which He had entrusted to it. Thus it must be today. (Answerer, vol. 4, p.46)

On number 4, we also have direct clear counsel that warns us of such terrible ideas–

 

CANNOT MY HOME BE HIS “STOREHOUSE”?

Question No. 97:

   Is it Scriptural for one to retain and personally use his tithe and offerings in order to carry on the gospel work in his own community, according to his own plans?

Answer:

   Nowhere in the Scriptures do we find permission to use the Lord’s money at our own discretion. The only justification for so doing would be sheer inability, for some reason to send it to the Lord’s “storehouse.” Should one voluntarily, though, engage in such a practice then he would set the wrong example before others.

And if following in his lead, others assume  the same right, their course must inevitably  result in seriously handicapping the Lord’s work, bleeding and subverting His treasury, and thus disorganizing His work and reducing the church to a mere shell, while her members are hiring themselves as laborers in the Lord’s vineyard, helping themselves to the Lord’s money, and running without having been sent! What a Babylon that would be!

   Though the Lord commands, “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse” (Mal. 3: 10), He does not say to bring all the offerings. Thus, He shows that if we would engage in some personal charity or missionary activity, we should sustain it from offerings, not from the tithe.

   “Angels keep a faithful record of every man’s work, and as judgment passes upon the house of God, the sentence of each is recorded by his name, and the angel is commissioned to spare not the unfaithful servants, but to cut them down at the time of slaughter….And the crowns they might have worn, had they been faithful, are put upon the heads of those saved by the faithful servants….”Testimonies, Vol. 1, p. 198. (Answerer, vol. 4, p.44-45)


“The message invests no one with authority to solicit financial help to carry on either their work or that of the Shepherd’s Rod. ” (Sym. Code, vol. 8, no. 1-12)

Summary —

The privilege to return the Lord’s money back to him is indeed one of our most precious blessings the Lord bestows upon us. I have personally seen it working in my own life and can attest to the Lord keeping His Malachi 3:10 promise. It is up to each of us to look within and account for either our faithfulness or thievery. Now is the time for self-reflection and while we still can make our faithful duty a serious business.

 

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2 Responses to “A Look at Two Tithe Payers”

  1. warrenminder@juno.com Says:

    Good Morning Rob: As I read your blog this morning, I remember our past conversations about tithing and offerings to our church. All the arguments your have presented sound just like the ones I gave to you as reasons to continue to give to our SDA church. You stay in the church, but send your tithe and offerings to your choice of what YOU perceive as worthy of your offerings. In fact #3 sounded just like your reasons for not sending your tithe and offerings to the SDA church. How ironic, and what I call self righteous. I still pray for you and a loving understanding of God’s grace in your and my life. Blessings, Your friend, Warren

  2. godsloveandlaw Says:

    Frankly, brother Warren, I am very disappointed in reading your comments. After reading our blog for 7 or 8 years now, the first comment (correct me if I missed something) I see from you is one of criticism. After all these years you never gave any support, helpful comments, questions, or anything showing you were benefited or at least learned something.

    The words of Ezekiel comes to mind —

    “And, lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument: for they hear thy words, but they do them not.:” (Ezek. 33:32)

    In regards to your condemnation “self-righteous” — that is indeed a serious accusation. However, the Lord works in many different ways and I see now that this may be useful to bring clarity to our next post entitled “Why Shouldn’t We Pay Tithes to the SDA Church?”

    I suggest you pray not only for me but you and your family as the time is short and I see very little if any prophetic lessons and warnings brought by our blog has done any good. Sad indeed!

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