Reply to Andre van der Mewre
New Covenant Grace
http://www.newcovenantgrace.com/tithes-offerings/ August 9, 2009
Russ: Andre, in my opinion you are more deceitful than outright legalistic law teachers of tithing. You discard tithing with one hand and move it around your back to the other hand. Yet it is still the tithe and you still teach tithing.
Andre: In Gen 14 we have the first record of someone actually “tithing” in the Bible.
Russ: While this may be the first record of tithing in the Bible, it is far from being the first tithe and it is far from being a holy biblical tithe. Every major nation in Abraham's time practiced tithing along with idolatry, child sacrifice and temple prostitution. Being very old and very common does not make something moral or eternal. Canaan was full of priest-kings who required payment of tithes from spoils of war. Nothing Abraham did concerning tithing is an example which is followed by any church. (1) only pagan spoils of war, (2) only once, (3) not a holy tithe from a holy land, (4) not his own property, (5) he kept nothing and (6) he gave the 90% to the king of Sodom.
Andre: There was no person nor any law that forced Abraham to tithe, because the laws of Moses were only introduced 430 years later.
Russ: There was almost every pagan nation which existed in Abraham's time including Canaan where he lived. Abraham had no choice but to tithe spoils of war to his local priest-king.
Andre: Unfortunately most of the time the Bible verses used and motives given are law-based.
Kelly: True, but your methodology is based on Abraham when absolutely nothing he did concerning tithes is followed by any church today.
Andre: Teaching people to tithe out of Malachi 3 is old covenant law!
Russ: Teaching people to tithe out of Genesis is pagan Canaanite tradition which was also followed in Abraham's origin in Babylon.
Andre: The entire Bible was written FOR me, but not the entire Bible was written TO me. This section of this prophetic book was written specifically to Israel whom at the time had turned away from God.
Russ: Yet you find it necessary to quote a long passage from Malachi. What was your motive for doing that?
Andre: Malachi was rebuking the nation of Israel for forsaking God and not keeping the laws of Moses, which included tithing. And what were the results of breaking these laws?
Russ: Malachi was primarily rebuking and cursing the dishonest priests from 1:13-14; 2:1-2 and 2:17 to 3:5. They had stolen the Levites' portion of the tithe in Neh 13:5-10.
Andre: Well then where does tithing fit in?
Russ: Tithing does not fit in anywhere. God never commanded the Church to tithe. Numbers 18 is ignored. If one accepts tithes as a priest, one must forfeit property ownership, give the first tithe to the servants of the priests, and kill anybody who dares to worship God directly.
Andre: Exactly where holy living, obedience & loving other people fits in:
Russ: No texts for this.
Andre: Because we love God. We do all these things because He first loved us, and it is our response to His love.
Russ: What part of the Law do we keep along with tithing? Do we still kill disobedient children? Do we wear clothes of two different kinds of fabric? Because we love God, how do you determine what part of the OT still applies?
Andre: We tithe to partner with God in what He is doing in the earth, to further His kingdom and reach the lost.
Russ: No texts again. Although money is common in Genesis and essential for sanctuary worship, money is never included in 16 texts which describe the tithe as only food from inside Israel. What you give is not a biblical tithe. Jesus, Peter and Paul did not even qualify as tithe-payers. The OT tithe was never used to evangelize the Gentiles. And God never commanded the Church to tithe.
Andre: Where should we tithe? The answer is most definitely in your local church or the place where you are fed (spiritually).
Russ: No texts to validate this "most definite" conclusion. Since you have not biblical tithes from inside Israel, you tithe nowhere. NT giving is primarily sacrificial. That means more than ten per cent for many and less for others. 1st Timothy 5:8 and 2nd Cor 8:12-14 are the believers' guides.
Andre: Offerings are normally given over and above your tithe to people or ministries that you believe are making a difference in the world in reaching the unsaved and getting the gospel to the nations.
Russ: I thought you were opposed to teaching from the law. This is pure law. There is no distinction between tithes and offerings for the New Covenant church.
Andre: However if you are tithing into a ministry that is promoting law motivated living … you are sowing into a ministry that produces death.
Russ: You are promoting law-motivated giving by only using Genesis. Tithing in Genesis was motivated by pagan law.
Russell Earl Kelly