Our Philosophy on Giving is…
…”grace giving” based on the New Testament as opposed to giving under the Law found in the Old Testament. Please continue reading to find out the differences.
Tithes – When we consider what the Bible says about giving to the church, the first word that comes to mind is “tithe”. The word tithe simply means 1/10th part. Under the Law of Moses, the Israelites were required to give three different tithes amounting to roughly 23% of their income.
Tithe #1 Regarding this tithe, the Israelites were instructed as follows: “…set aside a tenth of all that your fields produce each year. Eat the tithe of your grain, new wine and oil, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks in the presence of the LORD your God at the place He will choose as a dwelling for His Name….” [Deuteronomy 14:22-23]
Tithe #2 The second tithe was given annually to support the Levites: “I give to the Levites all the tithes in Israel as their inheritance….” [Numbers 18:21]
Tithe #3 The third tithe was given once every three years for the support of the poor: “At the end of every three years, bring all the tithes of that year’s produce and store it in your towns, so that the Levites (who have no allotment or inheritance of their own) and the aliens, the fatherless and the widows who live in your towns may come and eat and be satisfied….” [Deuteronomy 14:28-29]
Grace Giving – When it comes to the New Testament teaching on giving, we discover that the Mosaic Law no longer binds us. Paul encourages us that Jesus “wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us.” Without the hard and fast law to bind us, we experience a freedom from the Old Testament tithe. However, this newly found freedom leaves many of us with a few questions when it comes to giving. Should we still give the Old Testament tithe or are we able to give less or should we give more?
Concerning these questions Paul wrote, “He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work. [2 Cor 9:6-8]
This is what we call “Grace Giving.” As believers, we give because of the grace that God has given us. In 2 Corinthians 8, Paul commends the Macedonians for their “Grace Giving.” In this text, Paul defines “Grace Giving” with 7 important qualities.
1. Grace Giving is Generous [2 Corinthians 8:2]
2. Grace Giving is Willful [2 Corinthians 8:3]
3. Grace Giving is Directed by God [2 Corinthians 8:5]
4. Grace Giving is a Shared Responsibility [2 Corinthians 8:6]
5. Grace Giving should be Exercised [2 Corinthians 8:7]
6. Grace Giving is Not Required [2 Corinthians 8:8]
7. Grace Giving reveals our Love [2 Corinthians 8:8]
Therefore, we conclude that a Tithe is not required under law. As believers, we are under grace and our giving should reflect this fact. We are not under compulsion to give, rather, we should give cheerfully what God has placed on our hearts. That being the case, we should all spend some time prayerfully considering what God would have us give.
To financially support Calvary South Austin you can make donations at the church by placing your gift in the “Love Offering Box”, via paypal or by sending a check to…
Calvary South Austin P.O. Box 152230 Austin, Tx 78715.
All offerings to Calvary South Austin are tax deductible.