Mal. 3:8–12 “Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, ‘How are we robbing thee?’ In your tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing me; the whole nation of you. Bring the full tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house; and thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing. I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it will not destroy the fruits of your soil; and your vine in the field shall not fail to bear, says the Lord of hosts. Then all nations will call you blessed, for you will be a land of delight, says the Lord of hosts.”
The word “tithe” actually means a tenth, which is where tithing 10% of what we receive comes from. Many Christians do not tithe because they do not understand the critical importance of tithing, and its foundation in scripture.
For many years I did not tithe because I made so little money, I felt I could not afford to; and although God always provided enough for me to squeak by on, that was all I did, just squeak by. It wasn’t until I began tithing–immediately giving 10% of whatever came to me back into a ministry (his storehouse) as God led me, that I stopped just getting by. I went from fretting every month how I would pay what needed to be paid, and eating really unhealthy cheap food, to being able to pay everything as it is due, and eating good, healthy food so that “my youth is renewed like the eagle’s”.
God promises that if we put Him to the test and bring our full tithe into His storehouse, He will open the windows of heaven for us. He wants to bless us abundantly in all areas of our life, but we first have to acknowledge his Sovereignty over all areas of our life, recognize that everything belongs to Him, including our finances, and submit to His will before He can bless us. We tie His hands in blessing us by not tithing. It is a contract, a promise, which requires us to do our part in order for Him to fulfill His part. If we tithe, He will open the windows of heaven–that’s the agreement. Our part is made clear, just as is His promise. Tithing is a matter of faith and trust in God to do as He has promised in His Word. And if God is nothing else, He is completely faithful and true to His Word. We are the children of the Most High God, Creator of heaven and earth and everything therein. Do we really believe He wants His children poor, just scraping by, malnourished and in tatters? How in creation could that ever glorify Him!
As He says, “put Me to the test”. Begin tithing and see for yourself that God is always true to His Word. He doesn’t command us to tithe because He needs anything from us; he does it so that He can send an overflowing of blessing on those who trust and obey Him.
A note on how God works with tithing–do not expect Publisher’s Clearinghouse to show up at your door after a month of tithing (or probably ever), and do not run out and buy lottery tickets. However, at the end of a month of tithing, you will find that all your needs have been met, everything you needed has been provided, and you won’t miss that 10% at all. His blessing won’t necessarily come in the form of cash, and could include, for example, someone coming and offering you an almost new refrigerator, just when yours has broken down. Just begin to watch how God works in your life to provide everything you need, acknowledge it as coming from Him, and thank Him. He probably will not provide that new big screen tv you think you need, or that newest piece of technology that you want because everyone else has it. He delights in giving us all we need, and our true heart’s desire; but those things are just vanities.