We believe in being good stewards of what God has given us. We also believe in being generous with those resources. No matter how little or much we have, the New Testament teaches about being generous stewards of what we’ve been given.
A careful reading of 2 Corinthians 8–9 teaches us that:
1) Generous giving is sacrificial. (2 Corinthians 8:2)
2) Generous giving is an act of worship. (2 Cor 8:5)
3) Generous giving is one of many evidences that someone is a genuine believer (2 Cor 8:8)
4) Generous giving is about sowing and reaping. (2 Cor 9:6)
WHAT IS A "TITHE"?
“Tithe” literally means “tenth.”
In the Old Testament, the tithe referred to God’s people giving the first ten percent of their gross income (also called “firstfruits”) to God to fund the Levite priests’ ministry (Num. 18:21–29; 27:30).
In addition to that, there were other tithes and offerings required of God’s people, including ten percent paid for festivals to build community and for celebration (Deut. 12:10–11, 17–18; 14:22– 27), three percent given to help the poor (Deut. 14:28–29), crop gleanings collected for the poor and foreigners (Lev. 19:9–10), and other occasional additional offerings above and beyond regular giving (Neh. 10:32–33).
In total, the “mandatory” Old Testament tithe resulted in over 25 percent of a family’s gross income going to God and ministry.
In the New Testament, financial giving among God’s people focuses on grace, generosity and the heart - not actual percentages of one’s income. In fact, the word “tithe” is rarely used in the New Testament, and when it is, it is usually mentioned negatively in rebuking religious types such as the Pharisees who gave their money to God but not their hearts and lives.
One thing that is very important to understand is that when we give to God, we are not deciding how much of our wealth to give; rather, we are determining how much of God’s wealth to keep for our own uses. In 1 Chronicles 29:14 David understands this principle that is so important for believers, saying, “But who am I, and who are my people, that we could give anything to you? Everything we have has come from you, and we give you only what you first gave us!" (NLT)
In today's churches, the term "tithe" is often still used, but it is more for convenience than anything else when speaking of giving, so that people can understand that regular giving is part of their life of worship towards God.
God’s people today are not required to tithe like someone in the Old Testament because we are living under the terms of the New Testament. But, like everything else in the new covenant, our grace-giving is to exceed Old Testament requirements of the law. Therefore, for God’s people today, almost everyone is in agreement in churches everywhere that ten percent should be a floor and not a ceiling, a place to begin giving and not a place to end.
There may be many excuses to not give - but the truth is that giving money is expected and honoured by God. As graced, Spirit-filled, worshipping believers we should give - generously, consistently and in keeping with our income.
We believe that if we give from the right response in the right way with the right expectations, we'll see the right results.