What Are The Four Types Of Bible Giving?
There is a saying, ‘the Bible is so simple, you need someone to teach you how to misunderstand it’. This is so true. Religious folk are quick to tell us things that are not what the Bible teaches. For example, ‘miracles in the church stopped when the disciples passed away’ is a common one people use to excuse churches without the power of God visible. Fortunately, Acts Chapter 2 makes it very clear that God wants the Church of Jesus Christ to do His supernatural. It draws people to God today, just like it does in the Bible.
Various people claim that tithing is an Old Testament practice. Yes, it started in the Old Testament however, those who do tithe to their local church in faith see the returns come back to them. Tithing is about giving. God is all about giving, John 3:16 says He loved the world (you!) so much that He gave Jesus to die for you. If you want God to bless you, you must give Him something to work with. If your bank account has no money in it, then the bank has nothing to draw from to reward you for saving. There is a ‘heavenly bank account’ that everyone has. If you want to be blessed you have to give like God gives. In fact, Jesus teaches us that there are four types of giving.
- Tithes (Malachi 3:8-11)- Tithe means a tenth or 10%. Tithing shows your obedience to God. Giving a tenth of your income to your local church ministry where you are spiritually fed (taught the Word of God) is how God blesses you. The tithe expands His ministry on this earth. The tithing standard started with Abraham, the father of our faith (Romans 4:16), in Genesis 14:20 where Abraham gave the first tithe of his income to the priest king Melchizedek. In Malachi 3:10, God promises to bless those who bring their whole tithe into their church.
- First Fruits (Proverbs 3:9,10 Nehemiah 10:36)- In addition to your tithing (which can be 10% or more even), you can give your first fruits. Giving first fruits shows your gratitude to God as it is the special giving of the first of your income. It doesn’t have to be money, in some countries people literally give the Lord’s House (church) the first of their harvest in grain, fruit, or other forms of first income for the year. There are 31 references to first fruits in the English language Bible. If you’re thankful, you give your first fruits. Christians are givers.
- Seed (Mark 4:8)- Giving your tithe is a fundamental, giving first fruit shows your thankfulness to God. Seed giving is very exciting. Seed is motivated by faith and reward. If you want to believe God for something we are promised a return of 30, 60, or 100 times in Mark 4:8 and Matthew 13:8. We can also expect returns with sharing the Gospel seed for winning people to Jesus. Giving faith seed is the surest way to stop poverty and debt in your life. Seed giving is total debt cancellation.
- Alms (Matthew 6:3-4, Proverbs 19:17)- Tithes, First Fruits, and Seed are giving to God. Giving alms is giving to man. The motivation is compassion. We’re not supposed to talk about our giving to the poor, donating, or other things that we do to help people. Why? God doesn’t want us to embarrass people who are in need. God is so good! Religious people want to blow a trumpet and announce to the world that they gave to the poor or homeless. The Lord Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:3 to keep your alms giving reports private and to yourself. When you give to people, Proverbs 19:17 says God will repay us 100% for our giving. Note it’s not 30, 60 or 100 times. Giving alms is to help people, but giving into His Kingdom does that and so much more.
To understand God’s plan for finances for your life, you must understand giving. Giving is not just tithing on all your income each month, God has given you many ways to go from the bottom to the top. He wants you to be the head and not the tail (Deuteronomy 28:13), above and not beneath. Even if you are in deep debt, giving is God’s way can take you from the borrower to the lender.
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