Critical Thinking

Tithing And The Emperor’s New Clothes


Hans Christian Anderson told a powerful story called “The Emperor’s New Clothes”.  I think every adult in this day and age should be familiar with that story.  The story is about an emperor who is deceived by con men pretending to be tailors, who offer to make him beautiful clothes that only the wise can see.  Of course, the vain emperor is intrigued, and when finally presented with his imaginary clothes, he couldn’t show them that he was a foolish man by claiming not to see anything, so he paid for his clothes, and delighted in their beauty.

He decided to parade his beautiful clothes through town, and everyone tried to prove themselves wise by not only keeping silent about the fact that they suspect that the emperor was in fact naked, but actually pretending to admire clothing that was not there!  It eventually took a little child to point out the obvious – THE EMPEROR HAS NO CLOTHES!!!  The damnable conclusion is, despite this child’s cry, and the other citizens’ realisation, the emperor, in his pride, struts on as though nothing was said…as though the truth was never revealed.

This is the situation we are facing in Christianity with the fallacious doctrine on tithing!  It is a gross mass SELF DECEPTION that tithing continues today, despite the lack of Biblical or historical evidence to substantiate its practice.  Despite the abundance of Scriptures against its continued practice in the New Covenant, the emperors propagating this doctrine continue to strut on, and their followers, who for a moment considered that they could be wrong, are yet again deceived by the audacity of these wicked people in IGNORING and denying the truth!

In Anderson’s story, the gripping factor that meant that no one could speak up was PRIDE.  They were too proud, too worried about their status to admit that they could not see any clothes.  By pretending, they maintained their positions in the kingdom, and everything went on hunky dory.  Who did the lie hurt?  Why be a hero and say what NOBODY else wants to admit?  Why embarrass their revered emperor with the truth?  What benefit would that do?

One of the driving factors in propagating the tithing doctrine is the promise of BLESSING.  Many a Believer are deceived by this promise to TRY this spiritual giving to obtain a blessing from God.  They keep trying and believing, even when they do not see any special blessing, assured that their faithfulness in this practice will eventually bring about their blessing!

The doctrine goes that when you tithe, you open up a spiritual bank account with God that you top up every time you tithe.  So that without tithing, you would have no blessing to withdraw from your bank.  Of course, they are not in control of their account, so they can’t withdraw the blessing when they want it!  What’s the point of a bank account that you cannot withdraw from when you need it?  But the teaching is so strong that people will rarely test NOT TITHING, in case it affects their blessing by postponing it or even subtracting from their account.

There is also that dreaded curse they are afraid will befall them if they do not obey and tithe faithfully!  Tithing is a bargaining chip with God, which assumes that you are not already blessed by God, and that you need to do this religious act of giving in order to be right with God and obtain His blessings.  Though some now deny that they give this offering out of coercion, but from a responsive love towards God and a belief in a ‘higher spiritual principle’, it is the Law – particularly Malachi 3:8-12 – that they use to keep their members in line!  Their giving of the tithe is never without the fear of condemnation if they desist, and as such can neither be said to be of faith nor of love because THERE IS NO FEAR IN LOVE (1 John 4:18).

The practice of tithing is heretical in Christianity because, not only is it done unlawfully but, if you are not FREE INDEED, then you are not saved at all!  And in the Kingdom of Heaven, we give because we ARE blessed, not so we can be blessed.  Everything we do from the point of our salvation, whether to love, give or live holy, is BECAUSE we have been made righteous by Jesus Christ’s blood, and are in right standing with God.  We don’t and can’t do anything to get in right standing with Him.  We only abide by continuing in His word (John 8:31-32).

We love Him, because He first loved us…” (1 John 4:19).

Freely you have received, freely give…” (Matt 10:8).

Whom the Son sets free is free indeed” (John 8:36).

For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all…  So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty” (Jam 2:10-12).

This dual hook of blessing and condemnation works so well that if one should desist from tithing for a while, maybe because of being financially strapped or unbelieving, anything that happens to them that could be considered bad will be seen as a JUDGEMENT on them for not being faithful tithers.  Never mind if that same thing happened when they were giving dutifully!  When they are tithing dutifully, they are COVERED!  Their insurance plan is working for them, so when bad things happen to faithful tithers, it is simply a case of bad things happening to good people.  But if it should happen when they have been unfaithful with it, it becomes a VALIDATION that they should have been faithful in tithing, otherwise, it wouldn’t have happened!

It is not a spiritual practice at all, but a SUPERSTITIOUS one!  So, no matter what happens, the doctrine of tithing which promises to bring special blessing, ABOVE that of other true Believers in Jesus Christ, who believe they are free from the Law, tithing included, will stand!  Blessing or no blessing!  It is their covering, their FAITH and their hope.  That is why trying to tell them the truth is like pulling the ground from under their feet.  They are comfortable in their deception, so leave well enough alone!

It’s a bit like those who gamble.  Even though they know that the House always wins, which is why gambling houses exist in abundance, they will still try their luck, because one day, it could be them.  Like they say, “if you don’t play the lottery, you can NEVER win the jackpot”!  So, just as any failures or mishaps reinforce this belief, every win also reinforces their belief that tithing evokes the blessings of God.

The truth is, tithing is a religious lottery and actually an evidence of a LACK OF FAITH in the free Gospel of Christianity, in that they think they still need to bribe or pay God for blessings!!!  They are not acting like FREE children of the King, but like conniving and distrusting servants.  And just like gambling, the emperors of this crafty doctrine are the real winners!  Check their bank accounts.  Running a Church is BIG business!  As I have said before on Instagram, the diabolical combination of the prosperity gospel and the tithing doctrine work together to make gods of men (link)!

Do the pastors know that they are deceiving their congregation?  Of course!  Just as the emperor and his noblemen all knew in their hearts that the emperor was naked, they know their doctrine is unfounded.  But their delusion and their hook is even stronger!

Their hook is manifold.  It isn’t simply about their ‘special’ blessing from God for being faithful tithers themselves.  They’ve got their own pockets to line with gold and status to keep in their kingdom!  To admit that they are wrong on this doctrine would cost them way too much.  Even when people know they are lying through their teeth, they will keep it up long enough for the wool of deception to fall back on the eyes of those who doubted them.

Ultimately, for these, the real loss is in seeing themselves as they really are.  Depraved deceivers, who once came in to save, but have become the slave masters of the people they sought to liberate with the Gospel!  For them, losing faith in Jesus is easier than admitting how far they have fallen.

Instead of repenting and falling on their faces before God, many choose to remain willfully deceived and self-condemned.  That is why many will not face the truth until they come face to face with Jesus and He tells them – “I never knew you!  Depart from Me, ye that work iniquity!” (Matt 7:21-23).

It’s a real real sad shame.

Photo credit: http://www.pixabay.com

If you liked this post, you might like SEVEN FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT TITHING

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2 replies »

  1. I’m not even sure what to say about this post, but I know I can’t keep silent. Too many christians are keeping silent on this!

    First of all, I think this comment you made “Do the pastors know that they are deceiving their congregation?  Of course!” Is wrong. Have you spoken to any Pastor that admitted he/she was intentionally deceiving their congregation? Do you have proof of even 1 person who is? Yes we might suspect some are, but we cannot accuse EVERYONE without proof, especially as Christians. That is NOT an act of love.

    Secondly, yes Grace and truth came through Jesus. That simply means as Christians we act out of love and not fear. So as a man, I won’t cheat on my wife because amongst other things, I love her and don’t want to hurt her, unlike in the Old Testament where I wouldn’t cheat because I was scared of the consequences. Now as a Christian, I “give” tithe to honour God and recognize him as my source.

    Yes, a lot of people are ritualistic about tithe, and lack an understanding about it. Which is what is disappointing about this article. I expected clarity for those who lacked the understanding, but it seems you may as well.

    Have you ever asked yourself why only Mommon- money, not even the devil was compared to God? Because God knows the power money can have over man. Which is the reason why God advices us to give, give, give and give. What you give out cannot control you, especially because the giving is symbolic of your faith in God as your source and sustainance.

    I started giving tithe when I didn’t even have a home church to call mine. It was at a point when I was searching the bible for myself and deepening my relationship with God that the Holy Spirit convicted me to give. Years later, without being coerced or even hearing a sermon about it, the Holy Spirit convicted me that my tithe should be the first thing to leave my income.

    By definition, a tithe is 10%, but what I give is even more than that. Not because I’m trying to bribe God to bless me, but to honour Him as my source.

    As “New Testament “ christians we should even give more. We give our money to huge corporations to satisfy our desires (cars, expensive bags, shoes,e.t.c), and their CEOs fly around with multiple private jets for leisure, yet it’s a problem to give a mere 10% to make life comfortable for those whose life’s work it is to further the gospel?! Shame on us!

    Yes there are those who misuse it. But why are we in those churches in the first place? If you don’t believe what you are fed every Sunday is worth 10% then please leave that church.

    There are those who say give to the poor instead. I say give to the poor as well.

    What is your money doing, furthering the kingdom agenda or chocking it? No one should be forced to give tithe and no one should be shamed for giving it.

    The bible says we should get wisdom and understanding…… for where your treasure is, there your heart is. Where is your treasure? In your bank account or in the kingdom of God (this includes giving to the less fortunate)?

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    • Hi GidiSnitch,

      Thanks a lot for reading my post and dropping your comment. You’ve said a lot and I feel that in order to properly address the issues you have raised, I will need to copy your post and tackle it paragraph by paragraph. I hope you won’t mind and will appreciate this approach.

      You wrote:

      I’m not even sure what to say about this post, but I know I can’t keep silent. Too many christians are keeping silent on this!

      My response:

      I’m really glad you decided to speak up!

      You wrote:

      First of all, I think this comment you made “Do the pastors know that they are deceiving their congregation? Of course!” Is wrong. Have you spoken to any Pastor that admitted he/she was intentionally deceiving their congregation? Do you have proof of even 1 person who is? Yes we might suspect some are, but we cannot accuse EVERYONE without proof, especially as Christians. That is NOT an act of love.

      My response:

      My comment is not without basis. And even though pastors may not readily admit that they are teaching lies at the altar, you can discern this when you ask them direct questions about their teaching and they dodge it, misquote or twist scriptures, accuse you of usurping their authority or being rude, or do anything apart from actually giving an honest answer. I had a correspondence with a young pastor recently about this issue, and he was evasive in his answers, misquoted and twisted Matthew 23:23, even though he admitted that it would be wrong to use Malachi 3 to teach on tithing or compel people to tithe because it’s old covenant. Eventually, he admitted that he wished more people had my revelation on this, but that he can’t stop it because people actually ask to tithe, and the Church needs the money.

      Now, your issue might be with my boldness to generalise and say that all pastors teaching this doctrine know they are in error. I also do not make that claim lightly. I do not believe that any Pastor or Man of God will accidentally preach a false doctrine, especially one as glaringly and obviously wrong as tithing for years… For the vast majority of Churches to preach this doctrine, even citing Malachi 3 without fear, is evidence of severe indoctrination, self-deception and apostacy.

      Finally, your charge that it would not be loving to accuse all, consider Jesus’ address to the Pharisees and Sadducees. Did he make an exception when He said “Ye Pharisees and Teachers of the Law… Hypocrites!” Severally, he said this to them. Were they all hypocrites? Maybe, maybe not. But a little leaven leavens the whole lump. This charge was so that the righteous would stand apart and condemn evil in their midst, rather than stay afraid of speaking up and being judged as a traitor, as some later did. It is not loving to ignore evil or deny evil. If they are NOT standing for the truth, then they stand with the LIARS, and it means that they are just as wicked or guilty.

      Also note that my comment was regarding pastors who teach or promote this doctrine, and does not include those who do not. You cannot and SHOULD NOT be a Pastor if you are not knowledgeable of the truth or a bearer of the Spirit of God. So the first lie they are telling is that they are men of God.

      You wrote:

      Secondly, yes Grace and truth came through Jesus. That simply means as Christians we act out of love and not fear. So as a man, I won’t cheat on my wife because amongst other things, I love her and don’t want to hurt her, unlike in the Old Testament where I wouldn’t cheat because I was scared of the consequences. Now as a Christian, I “give” tithe to honour God and recognize him as my source.
      Yes, a lot of people are ritualistic about tithe, and lack an understanding about it. Which is what is disappointing about this article. I expected clarity for those who lacked the understanding, but it seems you may as well.

      My response:

      I don’t know if you finished your last sentence, because I don’t understand what you meant by “it seems you may as well.”

      In terms of giving clarity, did you miss this:

      “The practice of tithing is heretical in Christianity because, not only is it done unlawfully but, if you are not FREE INDEED, then you are not saved at all! And in the Kingdom of Heaven, we give because we ARE blessed, not so we can be blessed. Everything we do from the point of our salvation, whether to love, give or live holy, is BECAUSE we have been made righteous by Jesus Christ’s blood, and are in right standing with God. We don’t and can’t do anything to get in right standing with Him. We only abide by continuing in His word (John 8:31-32).

      “We love Him, because He first loved us…” (1 John 4:19).

      “Freely you have received, freely give…” (Matt 10:8).

      “Whom the Son sets free is free indeed” (John 8:36).

      “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all… So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty” (Jam 2:10-12).

      “?

      That was my attempt at clarity. I have lots of other posts shedding clarity, including answering Seven Frequently Asked Questions About Tithing (a post on this blog) and a long study I wrote on this issue at https://blog.ufuomaee.org/christianity-on-tithes-and-giving

      You wrote:

      Have you ever asked yourself why only Mommon- money, not even the devil was compared to God? Because God knows the power money can have over man. Which is the reason why God advices us to give, give, give and give. What you give out cannot control you, especially because the giving is symbolic of your faith in God as your source and sustainance.

      My response:

      Thanks for highlighting this point. But you also make a common mistake tithers and proponents of tithing make. You assume that those who are challenging the tithe stand against GIVING! That’s a horrendous conclusion! Jesus and Paul taught LOTS AND LOTS about giving! Giving and Tithing are two very different things, and I have a post on Instagram that I used to shed light on this. I hope you will read it. Here’s the link: https://www.instagram.com/p/BfpgSs3hSpO/?taken-by=ufuomaee

      You wrote:

      I started giving tithe when I didn’t even have a home church to call mine. It was at a point when I was searching the bible for myself and deepening my relationship with God that the Holy Spirit convicted me to give. Years later, without being coerced or even hearing a sermon about it, the Holy Spirit convicted me that my tithe should be the first thing to leave my income.

      My response:

      Whether or not it was the Holy Spirit that convicted you to tithe, God alone knows. I know it is not impossible for God to put a burden on our hearts to do something – anything, even against His Law! Consider God COMMANDING Abraham to go and sacrifice his only promised son and heir! Yes, God, is known for trying to break us and our love for anything apart from Him, and maybe what God wanted you to do was learn how to give freely, to whoever asks, as unto Him! Jesus also taught us to give to all who ask (Luke 6:30-36). So, this doesn’t mean that tithing as a Christian practice is legitimate and should continue.

      Paul taught in Romans 14 about weak faith / strong faith, and that whatever is not done of faith is sin. Our faith is moulded by what we know and how we perceive God. And it is right for you to continue to do as God reveals to you in good conscience. But this doesn’t excuse those who are in leadership from teaching what is contrary to the Spirit of Grace and Truth and the Law of Liberty. They should know better, and they should teach the truth, while giving grace to those who have weaker faith and need to grow in wisdom and understanding.

      You wrote:

      By definition, a tithe is 10%, but what I give is even more than that. Not because I’m trying to bribe God to bless me, but to honour Him as my source.

      My response:

      All the same, if you are in Christ, you are free from any obligatory tithe. All the Law is fulfilled in LOVE, and it is loving to give. Paul, said:

      “The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully[a] will also reap bountifully. 7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver”. (2 Cor 9:6-7)

      Tithing is of the Law, and so not of faith nor love. Giving is by faith and is born from love. And those who are free are led by the Spirit of God to give…and when they do, they do not let their left hand know what their right hand is doing. It’s not something you need to calculate, but a lifestyle you have to live, where you do not hold tightly to material things, even though you are diligent in all you do, so that everything you are and have can be used to the glory of God.

      You wrote:

      As “New Testament “ christians we should even give more. We give our money to huge corporations to satisfy our desires (cars, expensive bags, shoes,e.t.c), and their CEOs fly around with multiple private jets for leisure, yet it’s a problem to give a mere 10% to make life comfortable for those whose life’s work it is to further the gospel?! Shame on us!

      My response:

      Yes, shame on everyone who resists giving to those in ministry because they believe they are free from tithing. Shame on every person who holds back from giving generously to others, because they “pay their tithes”! And shame to every minister who compels his followers to tithe by the law, because they are desperate for money! Please understand that I do not stand against giving, and giving to men of God who teach the true doctrine of Christ, which is the ONLY thing that can save them – the truth! But anybody teaching lies and constraining God’s free people is a liar and not a man of God, and I won’t even encourage anyone to give him their spare change! Better to give to the poor.

      And I also want to point out how this comment of yours implies that non-tithers do not give. We GIVE! And we probably give more than those who tithe. We are not goats that must be compelled by LAW to give, but we are children of our Father who is GENEROUS, kind to the just and unjust!

      You wrote:

      Yes there are those who misuse it. But why are we in those churches in the first place? If you don’t believe what you are fed every Sunday is worth 10% then please leave that church.

      My response:

      Interesting how you are pricing the Gospel… Worth 10% Are you going to Church to be fed? By a man who you pay? Does not the Holy Spirit teach you all things? I thought we go to Church to fellowship, and strengthen one another… Not to sit and be preached at by someone we are afraid to correct, when they start teaching lies!

      You wrote:

      There are those who say give to the poor instead. I say give to the poor as well.

      My response:

      Amen! Give to the poor, your family, your Fellowship, and your Community/country! Give Give Give! More than money, but all the talents God has given you, and die empty!

      You wrote:

      What is your money doing, furthering the kingdom agenda or chocking it? No one should be forced to give tithe and no one should be shamed for giving it.

      My response:

      You are right, no one should be forced to give tithes. Many argue that they are not. How about deceived? The Devil didn’t force Eve to eat that fruit…. He just deceived her. He contradicted God. That’s what the Church is doing. Contradicting God. Jesus said “Whom the Son sets free is FREE INDEED!” and pastors teach that they still need to observe the Law by tithing!

      No, you shouldn’t be ashamed of tithing if you have been doing so in ignorance and good faith. But when you know you are free, then you should walk in your liberty and in faith. You will not be justified to keep doing what you did before when you were ignorant, because it isn’t only wrong for you, but for those who observe you, and you further promote the message that YOU and THEY are not truly free. GIVE! No need to tithe. Please read that post I quoted and note the difference. The Law comes with a curse for those who try to keep it but fail. Live as those who will be judged by the Law of Liberty.

      You wrote:

      The bible says we should get wisdom and understanding…… for where your treasure is, there your heart is. Where is your treasure? In your bank account or in the kingdom of God (this includes giving to the less fortunate)?

      My response:

      Yes, let’s all get wisdom. We don’t have to believe everything we are told by men who call themselves pastors. Jesus warned us about wolves in sheep’s clothing! It was not in vain! Even in Peter and Paul’s time, these wolves had already infiltrated the Church. Pray and study to show yourself approved.

      As to where my treasure is, God knows all that I am and have is His!

      Be blessed!

      Love, Ufuoma.

      Like

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