I had this post in my draft for some time but after listening to Doug’s Podcast where he mentioned tithing, I have decided that I will put my case forward (hopefully in really simple terms) why I do not believe that we, as new testament believers, are obliged to tithe today. I will try and refrain from going into too much details about how Israel was to tithe


I will break this down into the Old and the New Testament

The Old Testament

The first mention of tithing was in Genesis 14:20 where Abraham ‘gave tithes of all’ to Melchizedek. Notice how Abraham did this freely and it was not a commandment from God. Then the next mention of tithing is in the mosaic law in Leviticus 27. I did a previous post called ‘What do we do with those old testament laws today which you can view here where I broke down the various laws in the old testament. I believe that tithing would come under civil law and is not binding on us today.

The New Testamant

So what about the new testament? Is tithing mentioned? Well we can see Jesus apparently endorsing tithes in Matthew 23:23 and Luke 11:42……or did he?

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone. (Matthew 23:23)

These scriptures are the ones that people use as proof text that Jesus commanded that we tithe today, but while Jesus was alive he was still operating under the old testament laws and the new testament had not fully been ratified. How do we know this? I would say for two reasons.

Firstly, when Jesus healed people, one of the first things he told them was to show themselves to the priests (Matthew 8:4, Mark 1:44, Luke 5:14, Luke 17:14). This was part of the levitical law (Leviticus 14:2) and we do not have to do this today.

Secondly, Hebrews 9:15-17 makes it clear that a new testament can only come in place after the death of the testator.

15 And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

16 For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. 17 For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives.

The other references to tithing are in Hebrews 7 which just reference the old testament stating historical fact so again, they are not a commandment to us.

So what is the new testament pattern for giving?

I believe that 2 Corinthians chapters 8 and 9 give us the principles for giving today.

So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity (which tithers do); for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Cor 9:7)

In a sense, it is harder to give from the heart as God sees the motives for why you are giving.

There are many people giving tithes to the church out of what they don’t have and as a result, get into real debt. I think the bible says something different.

11 but now you also must complete the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to desire it, so there also may be a completion out of what you have. 12 For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have.
13 For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened; 14 but by an equality , that now at this time your abundance may supply their lack, that their abundance also may supply your lack—that there may be equality. (2 Cor 8:11-14)

If you are in serious debt e.g. arrears in loans, then you should be doing what you can to pay back that money to the loan company and then when you can, then give . This is called good stewardship and should not be seen as ‘not putting God first”. If you don’t have, you can’t give and should not be made to feel guilty for ‘not paying your tithes’. As the scripture above says, there should be equality, but that it not what we see these days. A lot of churches are getting fatter financially and their members are suffering as a result.

So there you are. That is my case for why I believe that we do not have to tithe today. God is not so much interested in the amount you give but more the heart and motive in which it is given, whether that be 10%, 1% or 20%.

  1. Carla Beth says:

    I came across your blog in a round about way and really identify with what you wrote about tithing. This is the first time, though, that I’ve read something like this. Out of guilt and embarrassment I’ll tithe, but there isn’t conscious depth to my tithing. It feels silly sometimes, and other times I just assume that I’m not a good Christian because it’s not on my heart to tithe. If we give because we believe we’re supposed to (meaning that if we don’t, something bad will happen or our halo will slip), well, it kind of smacks of superstition, something akin to not kissing the Virgin Mary’s feet as Catholics exit their church. They can find spiritual justification, but ultimately there seems to be more of a “good luck, bad luck” thing running in the background. On the other hand, though, giving when we really don’t want to might be the source of an important spiritual lesson. What might the bible say about that? I’m not well versed to know how to search for answers to this question. Anyway, I’m glad I found your blog. Cheerios, Carla Beth.

  2. coldfire says:

    So what a church look like where tithing did not exist?

  3. Alan Higgins says:

    I am not sure if I understand your question but it should look the new testament church. See the scriptures I used above.

  4. Alan Higgins says:

    Carla, God is more interested with the manner in which you give and not the amount. See Luke 21:1-4. You can give a large amount with a grudging heart versus a small amount with a cheerful heart and God would honor the small amount more. We are totally bombarded on TV with ‘If you give your tithes and your offerings, you will receive’ and as you said made to feel guilty if we dont. God is not our spiritual slot machine. You made a lot of good points and I can definitely relate to what you have said. I am glad I have helped you


  5. coldfire says:

    Hi Alan,
    What I meant is, the church is so dependent on tithing. Are you suggesting that all pastors should be tentmakers?

  6. Alan Higgins says:

    Not at all. The church should definitely be givers but not necessarily tithers. If someone wants to tithe that is up to them and in and of itself, there is nothing wrong, but there is no command in scripture for us to do so

  7. livequietly says:

    Interesting line of thought. The Lord loves a cheerful giver. I’ve told my own children that they should only give if they can do so with a happy heart.

    Now, while I will agree with your line of reasoning as to why it is not a commandment to tithe, I think that giving into the kingdom is very important.

    For a couple of reasons….

    1. If you are giving more to your cable bill then you are to the church, you may have a problem.

    Matthew 6:21

    For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

    2. When we give we align ourselves with God’s purposes and become part of the solution for those in need. As we sow then we reap so that we might be able to sow more.

    Mattthew 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

    So I think we should give, but we should give in the places where we can do it with the right attitude and for the right reason.

    This reminds me of what my Dad would say about people who thought they wanted to missionaries. He would take them on a short term mission trip and let them get dirty, really dirty, and hot, and tired and wipe the snotty noses and hold the children with lice in their hair.

    At the end of the trip out of 15 to 20 people who went. One maybe two would go home and decide that was the best thing ever and they couldn’t wait to do it full time. The rest figured out they would rather support a missionary then be one.

    They did too, most of them went on to support my father or the “missionary in their midst”.

    So give if you can do it with a happy heart. If you don’t have a happy heart, pray for one. I do believe that you need to support those who are supporting you spiritually. Also though, we need to think about supporting those who are going into all the world to preach the gospel. They become your hands and feet in all the world when you give them the means to go.

    Sorry, didn’t realize I was going on a “support your local missionary” binge!!!!

    good post!!!

  8. Alan Higgins says:

    livequietly, I totally agree with you and maybe I should have made it clearer in the post that we should, as believers, be giving and have a giving heart. Motive is key

  9. livequietly says:

    I thought we agreed. Great post.


  10. coldfire says:

    I am very interested in this Alan, and I first want to thank you for taking the time to dialogue with me about this. I think it is interesting that you see a difference between giving and tithing. If I am understanding you correctly, you are suggesting that giving comes from an inner motivation and tithing is part of the purity/social laws from the time of Israel that cannot translate into a modern society. This is an interesting thought.

    As I thought about this, I wondered what a church would look like that had no offering plate, but rather people would help people within the church as needs would arise. I think this would be a wondeful way to do church, and I will probably be blogging about this in the future. Thanks for the stimulating conversation.

  11. livequietly says:

    I don’t know what a church would look like if tithing “didn’t exist” but I have been to a church where they did not pass the offering plate. There were boxes at the back if anyone wanted to use them. It must have been working, they had a 9000 member church.

    It was High Desert Church in Victorville, CA. We really enjoyed our time under the tutelage of Pastor Tom Mercer.

    This is a link to their message library.


  12. Alan Higgins says:

    Let me use myself as an example coldfire. I used to tithe and if I am honest I did it out of compulsion and out of necessity (2 Cor 9:7) and was not really a cheerful giver at all. In fact many times it was grudgingly, thinking to myself ‘Do you know what i could do with that money?’. Now that I understand that tithing is not a commandment, I could easily say, well let me spend that money now and if I did that, it would show my heart. Now I understand that not everyone who pays tithes does it with the heart that I did.

    At present, I still give to my church on a regular basis but I dont give 10%. What I give is between me and God and God knows the heart with which I am giving. It is now not out of compulsion or out of ‘I am robbing God if I dont pay my tithes’ but out of my love for my church and the wanting to support it whenever I can. For some people, that may not be every month because of their situation and they should not be made to feel bad. My church always makes it a point to tell visitors that they are under no obligation to give and we do not have a strong emphasis on tithing and the church seems to be running just fine so it can be done

    I hope I havent waffled on too much or confused you even more


  13. Sicarii says:

    I agree 100% with what you said about tithing, Alan. On the other hand, there are those churches where they encourage you to first give to God, then your problems with the debt collectors will be resolved.

  14. blackreformingkid says:

    Good post, Bro. Alan. I know when I was in my old church, I would always 10% of the price of everything lest I was condemned for being greedy. A lot of folks tithe because they HAVE to, not because they want to. Given the chance, a lot of tithers would stop…

  15. wickle says:

    What’s funny is that this is the second conversation I’ve had on this topic this week.

    I agree with you completely. We should be giving — 10%? 1%? 75%? It depends on our resources, our hearts, and so much more. Like everything else, it’s about the relationship and the heart, not the law. We should have givers, as you said.

    I don’t sing, raise my hands, and pray because some commandment tells me to do so. I do it because I love God and want to tell Him so.

    I should give not because I’m required to, but because I love God and it’s an act of worship. Right now, we’re coming in at less than 10% because I’m carrying a lot of debt from a failed run at self-employment and legal expenses. This is one of those lingering points of legalism, I think.

    Great post.

  16. Karl Nova says:

    Imagine what it would be like if people knew that they are free from the law and legalism being preached?

    This is something that men who have built their empires off of such teaching fear the most.

    We are definitely to support those who support us spiritually (which actually is ANYONE who is a blessing to you in some way not just those in “full time ministry” but I digress) but all this arm twisting and emotional blackmailing has got to stop.

    People keep going to such churches because they don’t see any alternatives or maybe they don’t know that Church is something you are already without going to a building.

    God help us

  17. Angel77 says:

    Lots of megachurches benefit from the tithe which leads to another gospel. I believe in the cheerful giving to give when you can with a grateful heart. I believe in paying off your debts first. Also, to be mindful of where your spending your money meaning the treasures of your heart. But the tithe is not a law in the New testament. It is a pity that churches cannot agree on doctrine but when it comes to the tithe they all agree we must give the 10 percent, funny! Some member told me that Jesus came to expand the law but I thought Jesus came to fulfill the law meaning the prophecies, the messiahship, and the gospel. The law is fulfilled and now we are in the new testament under Christ’s grace.

  18. Alan Higgins says:

    I totally agree with you Angel77. Well stated

  19. freewillgiver says:

    Tithing is not for today. Money tithing 10% of one’s income for all was never a practice mandated by the Old testament or the new testament. Money tithing 10% of everyones income is a misunderstanding and blending of tithe which were never money and offerings wich could be anything and given anywhere but dedicated to God. The new covenant taught by Jesus demands only freewill offerings. No fixed percentage, no fixed place of giving, and no fixed set of people to give it to mearly guidelines. Give gennerously give to the poor, and set in your heart what one should give are some of the genneral guidlines.

    Those who preach that failing to moneytithe 10% of every christians income grossly abuse scripture. For example the poor were not required to tithe their foodstuffs because they were the ones who were suppose to recieve the foodstufs. If one had less than 10 cattle one did not tithe. If one had no land one did not tithe the foodstuffs from the increace because one had no land. Today many Preachers demand the tithe of money even though Moses in the law never required a monetithe. They also tell the poor to moneytithe. This is opposite of what tithing was desighned for.

    When Moses built the temple with money he asked for a free will offering of gold and precious metals. When he had enough he gave it back. Preachers of today think that they are entitled to ten percent of every Christians income. It is terrible. Just read Deuteronomy 14 22- the end of the chapter and you will be enlightened. The old testament tithe was always to be eaten. Money tithing never existed as a requirement in the law.


  20. freewillgiver says:

    I have posted alot on this blogsite about tithing. Jared b helped to write some of the anti-tithe stuff on Wikipidia this is his site. Listen everyone this is not a small issue. Teaching money-tithing is a stumbling block to Christians and a grave millstone around the neck of pastors who teach it. They benifit from a leagalistic doctrine unfouned in scripture. Please everyone research all 47 scriptures in the Bible on tithing. There has never been a required moneytithe. People should send their kids to Christian schools, or send their money to missionaries or buy Christian music before giving to a pastor who teaches moneytithing. here is the site Anyone who researches the topic will be set free. Pleas set others free. the church needs reforming


  21. Laura says:

    I think it’s all about the heart. A person truely struggling is different to someone living outside of their means – as someone mentioned earlier, if you’re paying more to your cable/sky provider than you are into God’s kingdom then there’s a problem!

    I do believe God will bless us for generous giving but only if we’re doing it for the right reasons and not to ‘get back’ or through obligation. I think we have to have a heart to want to see people saved and to help fund the spreading of the Word. On another note though if we look at the likes of Jackie Pullinger who has done such great works for God’s kingdom yet has never asked for a penny – God has always provided the essentials, she spent most of her years living in squalor but had the money to eat and fund the spreading of the Word and that was enough. I don’t recall her ever owning a Porsche or a 25 bed mansion with a pool and gym. Also I believe she was the only preacher who came to the ‘Toronto Blessing’ to speak about the importance of repentance!

    Also do you think that someone who has more should give more? I’m not struggling right now but I’m not exactly rolling in it, but I’d like to think if one day I did become a millionnaire I’d give a substantially larger percentage of my money to God.

    Finally how do these ‘abundant life’ type preachers justify the passage in the Bible where it says it’s easier for a camel to get through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to get into heaven? – I actually read somewhere the other day that the ‘eye of the needle’ was literal, and the common interpretation that it was a smallish door on the city gates was actually a myth made up by people who weren’t comfortable with the scripture, yet it’s still commonly believed today! I’d be interested to look into that further.

  22. Alan Higgins says:

    Laura you asked ‘Also do you think that someone who has more should give more?’ and I think you answered your own question when you said ‘I think it’s all about the heart’. Even if someone gives more because they have more, they still can give with wrong motives and with a proud heart.

  23. Laura says:

    Yeah, I guess you’re right. Do you think it’s worse to give with the wrong motive than to not give at all?

    Sometimes when I’m giving I question my own motives, I think it comes down to me wanting to do right by God, therefore I know I must. It’s difficult for me to explain really, I don’t feel negative when giving but I guess I feel I am giving because I must. I want a desire to give, rather than feel I’m doing it through obligation. It’s definately an area I need to pray about.

  24. Alan Higgins says:

    Again it is the heart and I think it all comes down to the heart. If a person doesnt give at all what is the reason? Is it because they simply do not have anything to give or is it because they were saving up to buy some new shoes? There are no simple rules and I think God did it like that on purpose.

    So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity (which tithers do); for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Cor 9:7)

    I have been there where i have given out of obligation and because I HAVE to. I am now at the place of giving because I WANT to do it and want to be obedient to God

    If I am honest, a lot of times, i gave because I wanted to receive something back and get ‘my blessing’ and show off to the world the blessings that tithing could do. My motives were all wrong and all about me and not about Christ

  25. alabasterboxes says:

    I agree with you Alan. It took me years and time with the Lord to see this though. Many Pastors here disregard the Old Testament except Mal 3. They beat you over the head with that if you don’t give so they can pay the staff and the large overhead expenses. I do believe we are to give and give cheerfully. I also believe we should not look at our possesions as our own and we should care greatly for our leaders. With that being said, we should obey what the Lord is leading us to do, and give cheerfully, never out of compulsion. It is a heart matter, not a law matter, that was given to the Jews.

  26. Lee says:

    For those who wish to do an exhaustive study on tithing, just follow Dr. Kelly’s work here:


    One of the arguments I had heard from pro-tithers is that tithing supposedly predated Mosaic law. Of course, they argue Melchizideck; but, what about Jacob in Genesis 28:20-22 in which he in essence makes a ‘deal’ with God to tithe in he is granted safe passage?

    Obviously, if tithing were a pre-Mosaic mandate then Jacob would not have been able to make this ‘deal’ since it would have been required anyway.

    Oh, the lengths these fleecers pro-tithers will go to!

  27. freewillgiver says:

    Preachers demanding money is a top reason why many folks refuse to go to church. Tithing is always a demand. Tithing was never an option. There is no middle ground. Tithing is either dead or we are cursed if we don’t give it.
    Most pastors are not greedy but they are preaching a system which puts them in charge of their congregations money. Christan forced moneytithing has no place in the church.

    Christan tithing is absurd!!! By the way who should we give the tithe it to?- Levites who support the temple and the sacrafice system. What should we tithe?-Food and what percentage should we give 10-30% Don’t forget to tithe wine and strong drink because we all need to party. So next time you want to tithe, go to the grocery store and find a Levite because you are required by the law if you are Jewish. If you try to give money you will have to pay 20% more like the Jews did in the Old tesament so bring your calculators to church if you don’t bring food. Wait the system sounds impractical and near impossible for today. Most Christans are not Jewish. And Jesus even ended Saturday Worship So tithing must also be Dead. We are the temple, Jesus fulfills the law, there are no curses under the Grace of Jesus.

    Two commandments Love Jesus and Love others those are the only laws left. The Holy Spirit guides us on all the details, Christians don’t need calculators for offering. We are to be lead by the Spirit.

    The poor rejoced at the food tithe system. It was acient welfare and social security. In the old tesament those with less than 10 cattle and those with no land never were required to tithe. Tithing was from the rich to the poor. Today Most churches teach that 10% of all money belongs to the local church. It dont matter if you are poor you must still give to a pastor who are usually finacially comfortable. The comfortable pastors somtimes give a little to missions and to the poor. First the middle class white collar pastor must pay for thier lifestyle. Missions and the poor get a trickle down amount. This is almost the opposite of what the Old tesament tithe was about.

    Where is the Joy and celebration in Christan money tithing. In the old tesament they always “ate the tithe”. Eat the tithe is found in scripturs several times. Where are the sermons on “Eat the tithe”? Additionally under the Law, Wine and strong drink were use as celebration tithes Deuteronmy 14: 26. I have never heard a sermon on this. So tithing was a party for the poor and the levites. The levites had property restrictions so they were amongst the poor. Try to imagine a pastor of today giving a poor person a beer. That is scandulus it is like Jesus turning water into wine. A very disturbing concept to folks who believe in leagalism.

    Today pastor have above average incomes and many are rich. All pastors who teach tithing are demanding money. Even if that pastor recieves no salary he is still setting up his congregation to believe that 10% of all Christian money belongs in the church. I refuse to support Christian false doctrine. I will spend all my money on missionarys, Christian music or Christain education. If a Pastor teaches tithing he will get very little from me. My current pastor is anti- tithing.

    I challenge anyone to find a requirment to tithe in the New testement or a money tithe in the Old testement. These things do not exist. I challenge any pastor to try to prove that Christians are in sin if they do not give 10% of their money. Please show this challenge to any pastor who teaches such. Any pastor who opposes free will giving is spreading false doctrine and undeserving of your money. Tithing in the Old testament was compulsary. But tithing was always food so no priest could get rich off of the food tithes. Money could be given but a percentage was never required. The temple was built with a free will offering.

    Most Protestant churches began as anti-tithing like Martin Luther and his protest against indulgences. The modern money tithe doctrine began to be preached after 1873 when it was argued by a Presbeterian minister. Before then many Pastors lived on parsonages and or they were supported by local taxes. There was also the practice of renting church pews. Renting church pews sounds discusting however the money tithing taught today is worse. Folks are lead to belive that they are in sin if they do not give 10% of their money to the Pastor. In Europe many chuches protestant and Catholic are still supported by some money from the state. In the U.S. many our local towns practiced paying the minister. As this practice was slowly abolished tithing became in fashon.

    Please stop referring to Chrisian Offering as “tithes” Refer to Christian offering as Offfering or free will Offering. Christian forced giving I call money tithing is a false doctrine which entitles pastors who preach it and makes Christians into sheep. All Christians are priest. “You are a royal priesthood.” All Chrisians can give to the poor or start their own ministries at home or send their kids to priviate Christian schools.

    This is not a small issue. Please read Deuteronomy 14 22- the end of the chapter. Check out the internet on tithing. Pastors are teaching leagalism and profiting from it. Chrisians are walking around with tons of guilt. Christians are giving to churches before sending their kids to Christan schools. Christians are neglecting the poor in Africa and other contries to support rich pastors. Christians are giving too little to missionaries because they beleve that the tithe belongs to the local church. Christian forced moneytithing is a large evil which produces many other evils.

    Freewill giving is the only giving taught for Christians. Pleas spread the word and start a revolution away from Leagalism. Forced Money tithing hurts all who particpate. Jesus wants Offering Offering Offering not Chritian tithing.

  28. Robert says:

    Hello Alan,
    I found your blog because I wanted to see if ANYBODY would actually use the scriptures to back up what they believe and you see it exactly the way I see it. If I hadn’t found you I would have posted my own blog on the subject.

    I want to add this, remember in Act: 15vs.1 some men came to the Christians in a certain city and said (Para) “Hey, you guys cannot be saved unless you follow the old law and be circumcised” Because of this Paul and Barnabas and others went to Jerusalem to the Apostles and Elders. And the council in Jerusalem issued an official statement for ALL Non-Jewish Christians. This:
    Acts 15 28-29

    For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;
    That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.

    WHAT!?!?!? Didn’t they know that a Church can’t survive without the Tithe!?!? smirk.

    To lay NO GREATER BURDEN than these.

    Finally, the Bible says to owe no man anything. Let’s say you owe 14,000 dollars in debt and you only have 500 in the bank. That is NOT YOUR MONEY in the bank. That money belongs to your debtors! God does not want you giving other peoples money to Him and claiming credit for it! In fact you get no credit, you should do the honorable thing, pay off your debt and then give your own money to God. I look forward to your response Alan. Thanks.

  29. Alan Higgins says:

    Robert,thanks for visiting my blog. I think you have explained this very well. The tithe is a burden to many because they are made to feel guilty and scared of being cursed. It all comes down to the greed and misapplication of scripture from the pulpit, Some Pastors are indoctrinated and some know exactly what they are doing but if you read the scriptures properly, you can see that tithing is not for the church today

  30. Sam says:

    My friend from America sent me this email – when I read it I was shocked, sad, gobsmacked infact in turmoil…reason for this was I copied this from the man’s blog & if you scroll down in his blog you read responses from many, many Christians thanking this man for sending this message as now they feel not guilty for not tithing because as the one says that she is in financial debt & when she tithes she cannot pay her debt & the other one says that now she won’t feel so guilty about first paying the cable bill – which is very high & then giving GOD what is left….heart sore….did the love of GOD die out of the church, have we become so ME focused that we forgot that ALL THINGS – even the money that we have – the jobs that we have – everything BELONGS TO GOD? ….the Word says HE GIVES SEED TO THE SOWER – not the other way around because if these people are to lose their source of income tomorrow – their jobs who will they cry out to for help…GOD…yet, they chose to pay their debts & everything first & then give HIM – the King – the Master – my EVERYTHING what is left?!!….it saddens me….


    When I got saved I was a drug addict for 7 years & I cannot even begin to explain my financial state to you, it was that bad but then I became obedient in my tithing & offering standing on HIS word that HE would open up the storehouses of heaven for me & let me tell you it is 4 years now – the blessings is uncountable & He has also taught me good stewardship in my finances – PRACTISING SELF CONTROL – A FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT so that you can get out of debt – that is good stewardship.


  31. Shireen says:

    I am totally shocked by this email… I had to read & make sure that I understand what is being said… that we as New Testament Christians are not obliged to tithe….
    The word of God calls those who does not tithe thieves.. I was sitting in church on Sunday… pastor carlton was preaching this…thieves he said….
    I went to see my friend who does debt councelling, I have a credit card that I just cannot pay…. She looked at me and asked why don’t I use my tithe or part of my tithe to pay and not go under debt review, cause I don’t have accounts… God will understand she said… now this pastor is coming and telling us the same thing…..
    God says we must give and then test him… he is specific about the tenth….
    This message is steering our focus from faith to our own strength….
    I am upset… !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Alan Higgins & joyce Meyers… is not the Word of God….
    If I find a scripture in the Word of God that tells me I shouldn’t tithe when I am in debt, then I will…..
    It so easy for us as Christians to fall for this lie of the enemy…..it’s a lie….. ))))))))scream((((((((((((!!!!!!!!!!
    Die slamse glo dit… you give from your left overs…..
    Obedience is better than sacrifice….
    This message will justify to so many non-tither’s ….. that they doing the right thing….
    When the Lord says… test me in this…. What does it mean… .?
    So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity (which tithers do); for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Cor 9:7)
    God loves a cheerful giver… he says when we give, give cheerfully…. Whether you give, knowing you will not have later, but that God WILL provide… give cheerfully…not what this man is trying to make it out to be… he says we must give when our hearts are glad….
    This word is going around & this if we are not grounded in our believe in God & his commands… & instructions… we will be swayed….!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Can you guys see our battle….. in everything….we have to hold on to God!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. Shireen says:

    I am totally shocked by this email… I had to read & make sure that I understand what is being said… that we as New Testament Christians are not obliged to tithe….
    The word of God calls those who does not tithe thieves.. I was sitting in church on Sunday… pastor carlton was preaching this…thieves he said….
    I went to see my friend who does debt councelling, I have a credit card that I just cannot pay…. She looked at me and asked why don’t I use my tithe or part of my tithe to pay and not go under debt review, cause I don’t have accounts… God will understand she said… now this pastor is coming and telling us the same thing…..
    God says we must give and then test him… he is specific about the tenth….
    This message is steering our focus from faith to our own strength….
    I am upset… !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Alan Higgins & joyce Meyers… is not the Word of God….
    If I find a scripture in the Word of God that tells me I shouldn’t tithe when I am in debt, then I will…..
    It so easy for us as Christians to fall for this lie of the enemy…..it’s a lie….. ))))))))scream((((((((((((!!!!!!!!!!

    Obedience is better than sacrifice….
    This message will justify to so many non-tither’s ….. that they doing the right thing….
    When the Lord says… test me in this…. What does it mean… .?
    God loves a cheerful giver… he says when we give, give cheerfully…. Whether you give, knowing you will not have later, but that God WILL provide… give cheerfully…not what this man is trying to make it out to be… he says we must give when our hearts are glad….
    This word is going around & this if we are not grounded in our believe in God & his commands… & instructions… we will be swayed….!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Can you guys see our battle….. in everything….we have to hold on to God!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. Sam says:

    Absolutely sister Shireen

    I agree with you 100%…relationship is better than performance & if you have HAVE AN INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP WITH THE KING you won’t be more concerned about natural things you will be conformed to HIM – you will have the mind of Christ – you will seek ye FIRST (not leftovers) the Kingdom – you will be rooted in HIM knowing that if you have FAITH AS A MUSTARD SEED & give HIM FIRST OUT OF YOUR STOREHOUSE (before even thinking of paying your debt) that HE will provide the finances you need to pay what you need to pay – scriptural in a nutshell but when HE imparts HIS HEART INTO YOURS NOTHING (no debt) or PERSON IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN HONOURING HIM FIRST WITH YOUR EVERYTHING.

    DO YOU KNOW HIM INTIMATELY in such a way that you are so lost in HIM that everything you NEED will flow out of that RELATIONSHIP….scripture is scripture – ask the Pharisees but relationship is Kingdom minded – ask the woman with the alabaster box.

  34. Alan Higgins says:

    Shireen and Sam, if you both want to tithe, that is up to you and I am not saying you are wrong in doing so. What I am saying that there is NO COMMAND for new testment believers to do so. If there is, please show me.

    Carlton Pearson is not the best person to talk about scripture since he twists it with the gospel of Inclusion (see https://realchristianity.wordpress.com/2008/03/06/the-marks-of-false-%e2%80%98christian%e2%80%99-teaching-and-teachers-part-11-the-gospel-of-inclusion/)

    Sam, you said that God whispered in yours Mal 3. First of all, does it line up with scripture to say that it is commaded for us all to tithe.

    Shirren you said ‘If I find a scripture in the Word of God that tells me I shouldn’t tithe when I am in debt, then I will…..’ Can you show me a scripture IN CONTEXT where it says that I should tithe when I am in debt


  35. mayette says:

    I don’t have comments.I just wanna ask question and I’m sure you can help me.

    * Should christians lead the prayer(opening,offering and closing prayer) on the pulpit though they are not tithing?

  36. Carol says:

    I live in Louisiana and I would like to find a body of believers that do not teach tithing.

  37. Douglas says:

    Alan I agree with you 100% about the tithe. Pastor always use the same arguments for justifying it and they use the story about Abraham. But most people think he has to be right and it’s a shame people will not study and find out for them selves what it is really saying. Yes Abraham tithed 10% to Melchizedek but if you read it closely he tithed 10% of the spoils of war also you will find out the rest was given to Sodom (wait didn’t God destroy Sodom for their wicked ways?) and no where can you find that Abraham tithed 10% of his personal fortune (God blessed him abundantly)nor did he ever again. By the way he never kept anything that was taken in that battle. Also Melchizedek was suppose to be the High Priest, but if you read carefully you will see that Abraham had to correct him, so if he was, it was position only. (if you ask me) Read Genesis 14 v 19 and 20. He Say’s The most high God but Abraham state it correctly in v 22 the Lord, the most high God. Maybe an oversight on Melchizedek part but it would seem to me the High Priest would know this?

    They also use Malachi Chapter 3 v 8 and 9 to make people fell guilty. But you got to read it. And they always use the part of robbing God in tithes and offerings and yes this is true they were robbing God, how? with lame and blind offerings with polluted bread. It’s all there if somebody takes the time to read it. God was talking to the Nation (Jews) and what was going on was they were giving their 10% to the Levites and the Levites were giving there 10% to the Priest who ran the Temple But their offering were not the best but the worst of what they had and the sad part was the Priest were offering it to the Lord instead of chastising the people! And yes this can be used as an example for today because of what they were doing they were showing God the true state of the hearts. One more note and I am done, the other statement they use is the one were God say “Ye are cursed with a curse:” I can’t do it on here but if you look at the KJV you will see the word are is in italic. What does this mean you ask? It is filler word that somebody thought should go there. But it’s not Gods word and I prefer myself to read and follow what God says so if you take that word out of there, it don’t belong and read just Gods word whom is cursing whom? So you can see how Preacher take the word of God and twist it around to mean what they want it to mean, how do you think they can afford them $6000.00 suites and Gold Tolits and Roll Royce’s. Alan I pray the Lord be with you but until people understand the difference between a cheerful giver (Jesus way) and tithing (the law) it’s a very difficult subject that is beaten into your head from the day you join the Church and it saddens me to know this. Your Friend in Christ Doug

  38. kurt says:

    wow, clearly done. i have looked over your site a little . so far i have enjoyed the site. looks like you have already started down a road that i’m thinking about walking down myself . let me explain , i have gotten to the point that i taking a second look at some things that believe , like WOF and healings , seed faith , hell and etc etc etc , well you get the idea i assume . but the thing that gets me is that alot of preachers that i have seen preach pretty much the same thing . just trying to sort all tis out is enough to make my head spin . i will continue to view your site. GOD bless you

    • Gerard says:

      Kurt, I don’t know if you still get updates from this site, but I found a resource that has completely changed my life and how I relate to God. I am now “doing” the Word instead of just hearing it. Alan’s blog causes you to have one of those, “Wow, I have always known that, but it has never been taught in church,” type of realizations. The main organization that I now follow is JGLM dot org. They have teachings about healing and simply living for God. It is revolutionary, and just like Alan’s blog, their teaching causes you to see that you have always known God’s Word was true, it just isn’t taught the way it ought to be in religious organizations, and I stress RELIGIOUS.

      • Kurt says:

        Gerard ,
        Indeed I do still get notices from this website and I shall look into the ministry you have mentioned . Thank you

  39. Alan Higgins says:

    Kurt, I did a series on the things that you have talked about. You can go through them starting at https://realchristianity.wordpress.com/2007/11/12/the-marks-of-false-christian-teaching-and-teachers-part-1/ and then work through the links

  40. snooky says:

    I stopped tithing sometime ago after a study. It was quite difficult learning this. Many churches who no longer collect tithes say their income increased in gifts and offerings.

    I am PreTrib. A study of the Feasts of the Lord from Messianic Jews was very eye opening. The Marriage Contract and all of the Jewish Wedding is about this event, the Rapture. Jews who become believers in Jesus can see what they have been worshipping all this time. Rosh ha Shana. Rapture is our meeting Him in the air, His coming for His Bride. The Second Coming is His return bringing His Bride with Him to rule and reign on the Earth.

    The Marriage takes place in Heaven. He judges His Church and gives gifts. The Marriage Supper takes place on the Earth. Read about a Jewish Wedding. Study the Seven Feasts of the Lord which are to be celebrated forever.

    Learning about and studying these Feasts will open our eyes to understand much just as it does the Jews meeting their Messiah.

    The Tribulation period seems to be confused with other tribulations on the earth. It is not the same.

    Revelation is about many events taking place at the same time but in different places. Many things happen and then He turns to His Bride.

    Yes, if we love Him we will be ready at any moment. The ten virgins were awaiting their Bridegroom, the father tells the Son, it is time Go and get your Bride. It matters that we are ready. It is about my love for Him that wants me to make this event. It is His love for me He comes.

  41. Marie says:

    Hi Alan,

    Thanks for this article and the one I linked to it through – about Old Testament moral, civic & purity (ritual) laws. This is great to read, because it is exactly what my pastor here in Massachusetts preaches.

    We are a very biblical, evangelical body of believers. The expository preaching and commitment of people to following the Lord is unusual in the Church today at large. However, the pastor has made the exact same arguments against preaching mandatory tithing that you do – same verses; same exegesis.

    And you know what? Our 500-member church has, relative to others, money coming out of it’s ears. I’m on the missions committee and we are blessed with a year-end problem: what to do with the $7,000 surplus in the budget. It is an absolute myth that churches can’t survive without tithing – when you remove that burden from people, they tend to (joyfully) give more. We even set up a separate fund to help out the folks who have lost their employment in the current financial situation – and the money has poured in.

    My previous (even smaller) church had the same situation…the pastor said that to understand tithing, you have to look at the whole social/economic system of OT Israel and the role the tithe played (much of which the federal government now takes care of). When you look at it that way, he said, most Americans are giving a LOT more than 10% of their gross income in the form of taxes, which in turn go towards social programs.

    Anyway – I digress….I wanted to add that my husband and I were just talking about this subject recently, as I often doubt that we are giving enough and feel it would be “safer” if we just tithe, and even wondering if we are sinning by not doing so because many (if not most) other conservative evangelicals believe tithing is required of us. He disagrees, and points out the cost of living/mortgage/expense of raising 4 kids/education etc. He says his conscience is clear. I know God cares much more about our personal holiness than the amount on the checks we write the church, but still, I second-guess sometimes on this issue.

    Then this morning I read your rock-solid discussion on tithing above, and am reminded of what I have studied on this subject. I totally agree with you, livequietly and freewillgiver. Great post, and great reminder!

  42. Greis says:

    Good post Alan. I just wanted to point out that all the references to tithing in the NT are actually recording “historical facts”/narratives”, not commandments. This is how I would summarize “GIVING” according to NT teaching.

    NT giving is based on:
    Acts 11:29 -My ability (How much I have)
    1Cor 16:2 -As prospered (How God blesses me)
    2Cor 9:7-As purposed/decided (How much I have decided)

    So the disciples determined, everyone according to his ability (not according to TITHING), to send relief to the brothers living in Judea. Acts 11:29

    On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper (not according to TITHING), so that there will be no collecting when I come. 1Cor 16:2

    Each one must give as he has decided/purposed in his heart (not according to TITHING), not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 2Cor 9:7

  43. Alan Higgins says:

    Greis, I like the way you have stated this

  44. Zhoona says:

    This has been a great topic, you shall know the truth & the truth shall set you free. Those who cling to the law, they do so out of ignorance, Jesus did encourage people to give to the poor, remember what He told the rich young ruler who had saked him wht to do so that he can enter the kingdom of God, Jesus told him to sell everything and give to the poor then follow Him (Jesus), In Matthew 25 where He talked about what will happen on judgement day, the righteous He said they supported and helped the poor, visited the sick, visited those in prison, etc. Jesus did not tell Zaccheus or the rich man to give their money to the priest or to his ministry, we can learn something here. God loves a cheerful giver, Jesus is our high priest, He wants us to give our body as living sacrifice, for more read the links below.


  45. Xander says:

    A rather interesting post and more interesting comments.

    I agree that the tithe is not a legal requirement for those saved by Christ. No one should be teaching the tithe as a compulsion or sinful if failed to be done. That being said, every teaching I have heard about it goes to speak of the blessings that God has spoken of to those who give tithes and offerings. There is no mention is the New Testament as to those having gone away, so that teaching should still be valid today.

  46. Alan Higgins says:

    Giving should be taught but not tithing. Nothing is wrong with giving 10% but the problem that I have is when preachers make it out as if it is compulsory for new testament believers. This simply is not true and not taught in the bible

  47. C. Reed says:

    I am very thankful to learn the truth about O.T. tithing and N.T. giving & have been freely giving for the past several years!! This is a very informative site. I see the question about “what would happen to the church if people did not tithe or stopped tithing” and it’s disturbing. If they are referring to the church structure/building, then I am assuming they are talking about the upkeep and maintenance of the dwelling or their Pastor having a vision of a bigger one? So, it would seem “faith” has been tossed aside and replaced with depending on the tithe to do the job. If a Pastor were to ask me “where is your tithe”, I’d have to ask HIM, “where is YOUR faith?” Once folks begin to read and study the Word, they will learn what the tithe WAS back then and why it IS NOT, now. It’s not necessarily about the definition but about what was actually going on in the O.T. days with the tithe to begin with. Crops, wine, animals, grain(sacrifices)..those were the things that were tithed and what the tithe was. I wish so much that people would re read & further research scripture, especially Malachi 3:8. Yes, the one we’ve all been beaten over the head with to guilt us into giving 10% of our cash money to the “church.” There are historical facts surrounding the things in the Bible but we just don’t take time to study and research for ourselves. As you do, you will probably be troubled to learn that there have been twisted interpretations coming from the pulpit for years. I’ll admit there are some verses that make you ponder but for the most part, get past the “thee’s” & “thou’s”and it’s pretty straight forward. Ever notice how preachers read scripture, stop and then give you their own little interpretation or translation? We must STUDY to show OURSELVES approved, rightly dividing the Word of truth. People either don’t want to embarass their pastors, themselves, or worse, afraid they’ll be put out of the church(building). Church leaders (& members) need only to trust that the Holy Spirit will cause people to “give”(not just your money but time, talents, helping hand—have we forgotten about those??) and if the Ministry is truly of God, the needs will be met. Blessings don’t come from the tithe, they come from our faith in what was done at the cross! Jesus’ death and resurrection ushered in GRACE! Hebrews 13:15 says “Therefore, let us OFFER through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming allegiance to His name. And don’t forget to do good and to SHARE with others in need. THESE are the sacrifices that please God.” Jesus paid it all! We can now give freely what is purposed in our hearts to give and not under compulsion. That’s what makes a “cheerful” giver!

  48. kay says:

    I agree. I give more than 10%. By following the tithing rule, i can only give 10%… so sad…

  49. Gerard says:


    Thanks for writing this. I only recently discovered this on my own and wrote a blog about it. I caught a lot of flak for it, and a lot of religious people flamed me for it. Last Friday I talked with a guy who is an advocate for tithing. He argued that tithing started with Cain and Abel, but I looked that up and found that their giving was not tithing at all. They brought the first fruits of their labor as an OFFERING, not a tithe. From my understanding, the tithe was instituted through the Law, as it’s in the first five books of the Old Testament. Ever since me and my wife have understood this, and left the church we were attending because they don’t want to hear the true grace message, we’ve been abundantly blessed! It is amazing how grace works when we get out from under the burden of the Law. Paul was right when he wrote that if you are under the law you are under a curse, and if you want to keep part of the law, you must keep it all.
    The Word is true, blessings are overtaking us. We can give out of our abundance, and it is far more than a measly ten percent.

    Keep up the Good Work!

  50. camille says:

    No wonder this is one of people’s favorite posts!…..

    • Gerard says:

      Yeah Camille, I’m amazed that no one else sees that tithing is the Law, and getting free from that is true freedom. Merry Christmas 🙂

      • Xander says:

        I am not sure how you see tithing as being under the Law when Abraham tithed to Melchizedek prior to the Law.

        • Gerard says:

          Because Abraham willingly gave a tenth of what he had to Melchizedek. When churches teach about tithing, they take the verses from the Law and use them to justify everyone’s ten percent. In the book of Acts church, they gave freely and no one had need. If a church building requires $40,000.00 a month to run, then the leadership should be teaching about giving, and telling the congregation that they are free to give what they want, but if the church doesn’t bring in at least 40 grand, it will have to close its doors. Tithing binds people up and makes them slaves under one part of the Law. If the leadership of the church truly believes that God provides, they don’t have to preach tithing, and put people under the Law, which is actually putting them under a curse.

        • Alan Higgins says:

          Xander, the point is, there is no where in scripture where we as new testament believers are commanded to type. If someone wants to give ten percent, that’s fine as long as they are not made to feel obligated to do so

          • Xander says:

            I agree that believers should give what they want, but often you see teaching that totally bipasses the blessings and redeemed message of giving that first 10 percent.

  51. Trinidad says:

    Asking questions are genuinely nice thing if you are not understanding anything entirely, but this
    piece of writing provides nice understanding even.

  52. loyce says:

    There is nothing like new or Old Testament Christian, the Bible is a whole and should be exposited right. It’s true some Christians are manipulated in the name of tithing that’s if they are not mature enough to understand the meaning behind it. personally I do tithe, not bse it’s a must but it’s how I honor my God with what I get, not that I earn much and my budget is covered but I came to understand that eve when you retain it, it will never meet your financial needs. It’s a biblical principle that Christians ought to make part of their lives not become slave to tithing but do it cheerfully when you get the opportunity. the scriptures say where your treasure is, so is your heart. the widow who gave her only remaining meal to Elisha complained that she heard little but when she obeyed much was added, God is the same yesterday (Old Testament) today and forever. do not lower Him

    • Alan Higgins says:

      You are free to tithe if you want. All I am saying is that the Bible doesn’t command that we do so

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