Doesn’t tithe mean 10th? How does that fit into how our church presents tithes and offering?

God is concerned with one thing and that is our heart. Is your heart with Him and His plan? Is your heart one of love, giving, kindness and glorifying Him? The Old Testament does tell us to give a tenth, the New Testament does not go against that but Jesus reminds us of the importance of giving with a cheerful heart. He is telling us that God is bigger than all things and we can step out in faith knowing that God will take care of us when we give with joy, happiness and love. Giving is about money but it is also about time, talents, love, fellowship and discipleship.

On Sunday mornings, you hear us say to give out of the joy of abundance in your heart, the amount is between you and God, to give to the storehouse and that we pray for God’s direction in it all. So, when you look at giving as a whole, throughout the bible, who are we to limit God at what He can do? God could be calling someone to give their tenth but he could be calling the person next to them to give more. Who are we to say what God wants from each person or what He can do with what is given? Only He knows and only He will guide each person in how-to.

We as a church pray and take very seriously the tithing that comes in to be glorifying to God on the givers part and on our part to do God’s will with it.

Deuteronomy 14:22-26:

Be sure to set aside a tenth of all that your fields produce each year. Eat the tithe of your grain, new wine and olive 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, so that you may learn to revere the Lord your God always. But if that place is too distant and you have been blessed by the Lord your God and cannot carry your tithe (because the place where the Lord will choose to put his Name is so far away), then exchange your tithe for silver, and take the silver with you and go to the place the Lord your God will choose. Use the silver to buy whatever you like: cattle, sheep, wine or other fermented drink, or anything you wish. Then you and your household shall eat there in the presence of the Lord your God and rejoice.

Malachi 3:10-12:

Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” says the Lord Almighty.  “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty.

Matthew 23:23:

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.

2 Corinthians 9:6-10:

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written:

“They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.” Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.

Matthew 6:21:

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

 

Is it ok to date a non-christian?

No.

2 Corinthians 6:14-18, “14 Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? 15 What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? 16 What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, “I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.””

God has made it very clear that those who have accepted Him are in the light and those who haven’t are living in darkness. Light & dark cannot survive together. Sooner or later, one will take over the other and, it most likely (and unfortunately) won’t be the light.

1 Corinthians 15:33 “Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.””

 

Can a relationship between two people who attend different faiths such as Catholic and Christian be a successful one, blessed by God?

The real questions to ask are:

1- Have you both accepted Christ?

As stated above, we are not to be connected with unbelievers. God made it very clear to Israel that if they intermarried with the pagan countries around them, those countries would eventually talk the Israelites into following their gods and lead the people astray. If you have both accepted Christ and confessed Him, move on to questions 2.

2- Are you both followers of God?

Luke 9:23, “Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. 24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.”

Are you both striving daily to follow His commands and do right things? If you have truly accepted Christ, things in your life change. You desire to do right and obey God’s commands. Of course we all sin at times, but if either of you are blatantly choosing wrong, I would question if you truly love God. If you are both following Him, here’s the last question.

3- Do you agree on your denominational differences?

This isn’t a Biblical deal-breaker but I have personally watched a marriage between someone who was Catholic and someone who was Church of Christ fall apart. There were disagreements on Baptism, prayer, worship, etc. Christians & Catholics believe in the same God & Christ but many other beliefs are very different.

Before marriage, I would recommend you sit down and have a conversation about your two denominations and how that affects you. You have to have the hard conversations now. For example, if your beliefs differ in a certain area, in which way will you raise your kids?

So, can this union be blessed by God? Yes.