A Rebuttal of TITHE AND OFFERING
10 Reasons to Tithe!
by Russell Earl Kelly, PHD, July 20, 2015
TOS: 1. To Honor the Creator.
“Render… unto God the things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21).
“Everything we have belongs to God,
and we are stewards of His goods.'”
God owns the entire world and its substance. “The earth is the LORD’s and the fullness thereof”
(Psalm 24:1).”he tithe…
is the LORD’S”! (Leviticus 27:30).
Kelly: a) No Bible texts tell the Church or Gentiles
to honor the Creator by tithing. b) The HOLY tithe of Leviticus 27 and 15 other texts is always only food from inside God’s
HOLY land of Israel. c) While it is true that God owns everything, He only accepted as legitimate tithes FOOD from His holy
land; the description never changed from Lev 27:33-34 to Mal 3:10 to Mt 23:23. d) God only commanded OT Israel to tithe to
support its Levites and priests; in the NT all believers are priests.
TOS: 2. To Acknowledge My Heritage.
“And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise”
Kelly: Not everything Abram did was by
faith. The Bible does not tell us why he gave pagan spoils of war; he could have been obeying the law of the land.
TOS: Jacob paid tithes (Genesis 28:22).
Kelly: Jacob the plotted and set the conditions
for God to bless him. Not a good example. He was not yet Israel.
TOS: Scripture says that Levi, Abraham’s descendant and the father of the tribe from which the priesthood came,
paid tithes in Abraham (Hebrews 7:9).
Kelly: Tithes in Hebrews are used to illustrate
that Christ’s Melchizedek priesthood was superior. The tithing law of Hebrews 7:5 was changed (7:12) by being “annulled”
(7:18). It was not transferred to gospel workers.
TOS: My heritage of paying a tithe precedes the law of Moses.
Kelly: Tithes existed in most pagan cultures before Abraham. Being old and pre-Law does not mean being an eternal moral
principle; the same is true of idolatry and child sacrifices. Abram’s pre-law pagan spoils-tithe is not used by Moses,
Malachi, Jesus or Paul to teach tithing to the church. O. T. tithes were never used to evangelize. And non-food producers
did not tithe.
TOS: 3. To Fulfill the Covenant.
Kelly: Second Corinthians 3:11 does not
teach that! Paul did not teach any Gentiles to tithe. Give me one verse in the NT after Calvary where God commanded the Church
TOS: The new covenant stands supreme … If the law
demanded tithes, then how much more should we who are under the “perfect law of liberty” give our tithes willingly.
Kelly: There is no precedent for comparison. The
law only demanded tithes from Hebrew food-producers who lived inside HOLY Israel before Calvary.
TOS: If the law is written in the fleshly tables of our hearts and we follow God’s commands not from
outward rules but because of our new nature
Kelly: See Romans 2:14-16. That part of the Law which is eternal for all mankind is written in the heart by nature and
conscience and enlivened by the Holy Spirit. Resting and worship are; 7th day Saturday Sabbath is not. Sacrificial
giving is: 10% is not.
TOS: “not was
under the law.” If that is a sufficient reason for not paying tithes …
Kelly: You misunderstand the nature of the law of the spirit of Christ (Romans 8:2). The “thou shalt
nots” have been replaced in new creations by “you will obey.” You misunderstand and misuse the word “law.”
Tithing was never part of the eternal moral nature of God.
TOS: We give willingly and liberally because the Spirit motivates us to give what God has said is His.
Kelly: Correct. Why cannot you leave it at that?
TOS: 4. To Show My Love.
“Neither will I offer…unto
the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing” (II Samuel 24:24).
Kelly: For some 40% is not sacrificial; for others
2% is sacrificial.
TOS: Someone should print a sticker that
says, “If you love Jesus, pay your tithes!”
Kelly: Jesus, Peter and Paul did not pay their tithes. Carpenters, fishermen and tentmakers did not qualify as food-producers
TOS: … the tithe is only the beginning
of his giving.
Kelly: Wrong. Since non-food producers
inside Israel and everybody outside God’s HOLY land were dis qualified, there is no precedent.
Your statement is based on a false assumption.
TOS: 5. To Fulfill an Obligation.
“Ye pay tithe…: these ought ye to have done and not to leave the other undone” (Matthew 23:23).
Kelly: You are dishonest when you omit
the context of “matters of the law.” Of course Jesus did not criticize tithe-teaching; this was before Calvary
when the law was still in full effect. Jesus would have been sinning had He not taught tithing to the Levitical system!
TOS: … it was something they “ought” to have
Kelly: “You” refers to “scribes,
Pharisees, hypocrites” --- “teachers of the Law.
TOS: To pay tithes is something every Christian ought to do.
Kelly: This is wrong. It is not taught to the Church under the New Covenant after Calvary. Tithes primarily supported
Levite servants to the priests (Num 18:21-24; Neh 10:37b); those jobs are now down by deacons, greeters, singers, musicians,
etc. and every believer is a priests.
TOS: It is desirable for the Christian to pay his tithes, he is expected to pay his tithes, and he has a duty to pay
Kelly: Notice no verifying texts are given.
TOS: 6. To Escape Condemnation.
“Will a man rob God?
Yet ye have robbed me… in tithes and offerings” (Malachi 3:8).
Kelly: (1) Malachi is addressed to Old
Covenant Israel and Judah (1:1). (2) It is specifically addressed to dishonest priests (note the “you” of 1:6;
2:1 and Neh 13:5-10). It is in the context of the Law (Mal 4:4; Neh 10:29). (3) Tithes are still only food from inside God’s
HOLY land (3:10).
TOS: How sad it is that people who are honest in business
and who pay their debts to the bank, the store, and the government will not pay God what belongs to Him!
Kelly: How sad it is when people to teach tithing
of income increase (1) ignore the description of food, (2) ignore the context of Old Covenant, (3) ignore the prohibition
against owning property and wealth (Num 18:20) and (4)teach New Covenant stewardship from the Old Covenant.
TOS: God does not give us the authority to use His
tithes for other purposes
clearly-stated Old Covenant purpose was to support the Old Covenant Levites and priests who forfeited property and wealth
(Num 18:20-28). O. T. tithes were never used to support missionaries to the Gentiles. There is no precedent.
TOS: 7. To Spread the Gospel.
“So hath the Lord ordained
that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel” (I Corinthians
Kelly: This TOS writer ignores the context
of the chapter. 9:14 does not teach tithing. First Corinthians 9 is a list of vocations with each having its own principle
are paid and receive spoils
9:7 vineyard workers also eat the grapes
9:7 goat herders drink goat milk
9:8 mill-grinders eat from what they grind
9-11 gospel workers deserve support
9-12 Paul refused financial support
9-13 OT temple workers received numerous kinds of support from the Law
9-14 gospel workers deserve support from gospel principles of
grace and faith. If 9:14 only draws from 9:13 instead of from 9:7 to 9:13, it must allow every kind of temple support into
TOS: Tithing is God’s way of supporting the ministry.
Kelly: No texts. Why do ministers own property and
accumulate wealth? What happened to Num 18:20?
TOS: In the New Testament, God has called people to minister the gospel.
Kelly: Although I am in favor of full-time gospel workers supported by New Covenant principles, the Bible does not teach
that gospel workers must be full-time and fully supported. Paul is the prime example of this view in 1 Cor 9:12 and Acts 20:29-35.
TOS: God’s plan is for those who preach the
gospel to live of the gospel.
gospel principles of stewardship: freewill, generous, sacrificial giving motivated by love.
TOS: The application of this [ox grinding] principle is that the minister of the gospel should earn his living
from his ministry. (See I Corinthians
Kelly: That makes no sense whatsoever in the context
of 9:12. You have disobeying his own principle and boasting about such. Again see Acts 20:29-25.
TOS: It is a disgrace to a church if the pastor has to take a secular job to supply his family’s needs
when there should be sufficient tithing income available to allow him to do God’s work on a full-time basis.
Kelly: Not Paul’s opinion. He worked night
and day to supply his own needs and the needs of those who helped him spread the gospel. We are not promised a bed of roses
without the thorns.
To Avoid a Curse.
“Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me” (Malachi 3:9). Compare Mal
Kelly: Jesus removed that curse
Gal 3:13 Christ
hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangs on
The blessings of OT tithing are connected
directly with the blessings of the law of which it is a part. Only obedience to the whole law could bring tithe blessings.
3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continues
not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
TOS: 9. To Enjoy God’s Blessing.
“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse… and prove me now herewith, says the LORD of hosts,
if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive
it ” (Malachi 3:10). (See also Luke 6:38).
Kelly: Shame on you. You deliberately omitted with
three dots “that there may be food in my house.” HOLY tithes were always only FOOD from Leviticus 27:30-34 to
Moses in Deuteronomy to Nehemiah (10:37-38) to Jesus (Mt 23:23).
TOS: “And prove me”
Kelly: Again I urge you to ponder Galatians 3:10. The whole law was a test, not merely tithing.
TOS: God blesses the people who pay tithes. They do not always have the most money or the best clothes, but
they are blessed.
Kelly: You are a deceiver. Is that why
you deliberately omitted the rest of the verse? Mal 3:10 “… prove me now
herewith, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall
not be room enough to receive it.”
If tithing really worked, Christians would be the richest persons alive and every Christian would follow
their example and tithe and become wealthy.
TOS: 10. To Be Consistent.
“Be thou an example of the believers” (I Timothy
Kelly: I implore you, please, please, please
study Acts 20:30-35. Paul boasted that he had spent 3 years in Ephesus not accepting any help. He told the assembled church
elders to follow his example, work and give to the needy. You, my friend, have reversed this.
TOS: How could I receive tithes and not pay tithes?
Kelly: O.T. priests were exempted from paying tithes (Num 18:25-28). They gave freewill sacrificial offerings (Mal 1:6-14)
and even then robbed God.
TOS: The Levites,
who received tithes, also paid tithes on what they received (Nehemiah 10:38).
Kelly: Levites were not ministers at the altar.
Read Num 18:25-28.
TOS: Paying tithes will not save a person-everyone
must be born again to be saved. But paying tithes will reap a blessing.
Kelly: You have mixed together Law and Grace, the Old and New Covenant.
Gal 3:1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes
Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the
Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
Please enter open dialog with me or close your site. Be bold in what you publicly teach.
In Christ’s love
Russell Earl Kelly, PHD