I wrote previously on the tithe from God’s perspective of the tithe providing a sort of insurance coverage as well as playing the role of the taxes that the kingdom citizens pay to the Lord of the earth https://pppministries.wordpress.com/category/tithing/

 I would like to further explore the content since the scriptures provide fascinating information on possibly unexplored application of the tithe in the body of Christ today. It fascinated me to learn that tithes were often given with other offerings such as the firstfruits, freewill offerings, vows (Deut 12: 11).

 The principle of the tithe

The tithe was given to meet the needs of the Levites who ministered to God in the temple. Here are examples of the tithe in the law of Moses:

  • tithe of seeds and fruits – Lev 27: 30
  • tithe of the herd or flocks – Lev 27: 32

The children of Israel were commanded to bring the tithe into the house of God and to give to the Levites it as an offering – Num 18: 24

The Levites in turn would offer a tenth of the tithe as a heave offering and give this to Aaron the priest. This was their tithe to God (Num 18: 26, 28). Numbers 18: 31 teaches that the tithe was the Levites’ reward for their work in the sanctuary. In fact, God provided cities,  flocks and other provisions for the tribe of Levi since their work was related to the tabernacle (Num 18).

God actually commanded the Israelites not to forsake the Levites since their work was the care of the sanctuary and the service of the Lord in His temple (Deut 12: 19).

What happens when the tithes and other offerings are not given?

I found two fascinating examples in scriptures in which the Levites had been forsaken, showing that the work of the Lord will become minimal when the ministers are not provided for:

a. When Hezekiah became King of Judah, he had to restore the worship of God in the nation of Judah.  One of the first things he did was to restore the priests of the Lord to their place in the temple. He commanded the people to “to give the portion of the priests and the Levites, that they might be encouraged in the law of the LORD” (Deut 31: 4).  The people obeyed the king and generously brought in their tithes.

The king later questioned the priests about the offerings. The chief priest responded by saying, “since the people began to bring the offerings into the house of the LORD, we have had enough to eat, and have left plenty” (2 Chron 31: 10).
b. I found the second example in Nehemiah 13: 10. This was so disgraceful! The Levites and singers in the temple had been neglected and had fled to their fields in order to look after themselves! Nehemiah restored the temple and the people began to bring their tithes into the house of the Lord.
APPLICATION TODAY
Although we are not living under the law, God set the pace when He provided for the care of the Levites. It is a shame when ministers of the gospel are forced to starve because of the lack of obedience of the people to whom they minister. In fact, God becomes so displeased with this that He promises that those who forsake His servants will come under a curse.
I believe that organizations should ensure that the ministers of the gospel serving under their jurisdiction should be adequately provided for, especially in  the instances when they pastor/minister to small and struggling congregations.
Hope that I was a blessing to you. Have a great day!
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