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By Lydia Goodman
January 27, 2015

I heard a pastor preach about personal finances and tithing the other Sunday. I’ll say it for you...“Yawn”. If you attend church regularly, then; at least once a year, you can expect to hear a message on giving back to God and the importance of sacrificing the “first fruits” of your labor. No doubt, his sermon was inspired by the Holy Spirit and I am in no way discounting the importance of tithing. As I sat there listening about how ‘If we give generously to God, He wants to and He will abundantly bless us in our finances’, I wanted to jump up and ask, “But...

What about the Christians in Africa living in huts without running water or electricity and those being hunted down like animals by Boko Haram? Is it because they don’t tithe regularly? Where’s their financial blessing?

What about the Middle Eastern Christians tortured and persecuted for their faith? We hear stories daily of Christians being forced to flee their homes with almost no money and without their belongings because they fear for their lives. Is God withholding a blessing from them because they don’t tithe enough? Did they forget to “Name it and Claim it”?

What about the Syrians who are starving to death? Did you know they are nicknamed the “grass people” because grass is all they can find to eat? Really? Is God withholding financial blessings from these hungry Christians because they don’t tithe?

What about the Christian man holding down two jobs to provide for his family and honestly doesn’t know where the money is going to come from to keep a roof over their heads? Still, he trusts God to meet his needs, he tithes obediently, and never loses faith. Why isn’t God blessing him more abundantly in his finances? Is he, in anyway, less a Christian than the prosperous man he sits next to in a church pew every Sunday because he has to struggle daily with painful economic realities?

What about the Christian woman who lives in a shelter and relies on food stamps to feed her children because she has left a home filled with control and violence? What has she done to merit God’s withholding the “blessing” of economic security? Yet, she still trusts and obeys God’s word. Will God not honor that?”

Some of you will write to me and say that the tithes we give go to support missions that take the gospel and apply it to suffering lives. True. I don’t dispute that; in fact, there are countless scriptures that underscores our responsibility towards the poor and those in need.

Others of you will tell me that God wants to pour out blessings on the Spirit-filled Christian, but we have to give our tithes in faith for God’s power to be unleashed in our financial lives.

To that, I respectfully say, “Bull”.

My problem with this message is that the type of blessing we are told to expect is one of personal financial security... a message of, “The more I give to God (financially), the more I will receive (financially)”. NO NO NO!!! God promises to meet our needs, not our wants. We have lost sight of the fact that the blessings that God gives us for being obedient to His Word ( which includes tithing) may be on the “other side”, as in eternal rewards-not earthly rewards. Yes, God is sufficient to meet all of our needs, but don’t you see? That; in itself, is the blessing. Many have fallen victim under false teachings of “Name it and Claim it” or “Health and Prosperity’ doctrines. These teachings do nothing but discount the abundance of grace and mercy that God wants to pour out on us through His infinite love. I’m just thinking out loud, but here’s another question about these doctrines: Are those that have bought into theses teachings being taught to pray for financial blessings for their own economic security or are they praying for a financial blessing to enable them to help others?

This “Word of Faith” mess, that blessings are somehow related to the words and actions of the believer and not to the grace of God alone; is dangerous in that it becomes a faith of works to somehow “get something from God”. I submit that, for the less mature Christian, this is a dangerous doctrine--capable of heaping condemnation on the heads of those struggling in various areas of their lives. “I must not be spiritual enough,” they say to themselves. “I must have some sin in my life that is hindering God’s flow of blessings upon me.” How sad that so many of us are blinded to the realities of the Christian life by, most of the time, well-meaning men in the pulpit who themselves have been taken in by “wolves in sheep’s clothing”. God does promise that He knows the plans He has for prosper us, not to harm us, and that He has a plan to give us a hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). But.. exactly where does it say that Christians are supposed to have economic security and that HIS prosperity should be equated with financial success?

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Here’s my message: It is not a sin to struggle financially. You haven’t done anything wrong if you have been a good steward of what God has given you. God does want to bless you abundantly, but His blessings are not tied to anything but your obedience to His Word. Tithe, but only for the right reason... to advance His kingdom and not to increase yours. Also, be aware that, for some higher purpose, God may not bless you financially like you want; you may never have economic security, even though you tithe your ten percent every Sunday morning joyously and gratefully. You may always struggle financially, but I promise you; He will more than exceed your expectations in blessings-here and on the “other side”, because of your trust, faith, and obedience. He wants your full reliance on Him. Only then will He give you “a peace that passeth understanding” --in, under, around, and through-- all your circumstances. What greater blessing could there be?

© 2015 Lydia Goodman - All Rights Reserve

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As a writer and commentator, Lydia Goodman is passionate about speaking out against progressive policies that threaten to erode our personal rights, freedoms, and traditions. Lydia has also written numerous articles on world human rights issues, in an effort to focus attention on the atrocities perpetuated against people of faith.

Follow Lydia on Twitter @lydiawgoodman




Some of you will write to me and say that the tithes we give go to support missions that take the gospel and apply it to suffering lives. True. I don’t dispute that; in fact, there are countless scriptures that underscores our responsibility towards the poor and those in need.