IN 2008 USA Today published an article about home foreclosures among Christians. The article highlighted how tithing was a contributing factor in these foreclosures. In one of my YouTube videos I share the story of a 68-year-old woman mentioned in the article. She is a devout Christian whose home went into foreclosure because she paid so-called tithes instead of paying her mortgage.
When given the choice of paying so-called tithes or paying her mortgage, why did she choose to tithe instead?
She believed that her tithe was her covenant with God. Therefore keeping the covenant was more important than keeping a roof over her head.
First of all, nowhere in the Bible does it state that the covenant between Christians and God is based on tithing. C’mon now. But that is one of those false teachings within the church that I will debunk in another article. As for now, I will respond to a comment I received from one of our YouTube viewers who shared his insight on why the elderly woman lost her home.”
Suffering for Christ?
He stated that “In this life we shall all as Christians loose or have something taken from us.” He then cited the following verse: “All that name the name of Christ shall suffer. The question is, what we are willing to suffer.” He went on to say, “God has told us that we would suffer in this life.
Now, I agree that we all experience suffering in this life. Trials and tribulations are a part of life. No argument there. And, yes, we sometimes experience suffering when we follow a righteous path for his namesake.
What I take issue with is the inference that the elderly woman suffered the loss of her home because of her Christian belief, and that she suffered for Christ.
Did this woman lose her home because of her Christian belief? Did she suffer for Christ?
From my perspective here are the reasons why she lost her home:
1. Following a false doctrine– The elderly woman believes what she was taught. The problem is that what she was taught is not correct. And if what you are taught is not correct then your belief is not correct.
Tithing is not a tenant of the Christianity. It is not a biblical requirement for Christians. Nowhere does the Bible say that tithing is part of the covenant between God and Christians. Thus, it is not a Christian belief. Unfortunately, this woman is under the influence of a false doctrine. In this instance she was not following Christ she was following a false doctrine. Therefore, she suffered at the hands of a false doctrine/teacher.
2. Making poor decisions – many times we bring suffering upon ourselves because we do not make wise decisions. Typically, when we make poor decisions it is because we do not have the right information to make wise decision. So when you have a situation in which someone is making decisions based upon a false doctrine (or wrong information) they will make poor (or wrong) decisions. Paying so-called tithes instead paying your mortgage is an example of poor decision-making as the result of wrong information.
3. Confusing faith with irresponsibility – Let me paraphrase a popular quote: “Do not be so heavenly bound that you are no earthly good.” Sometimes church folk get so “religious” that they do things that are completely irresponsible in the name of faith (or God). As a result they bring unnecessary hardships upon themselves.
I challenge anyone to go the utilities company and tell them you will no longer pay your bills because you are paying all your money in tithes. See how quickly they come and shut off your lights, water and gas! If the woman had paid her mortgage she would have kept her home.
Worse Than An Infidel
For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding;
Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding.
We all make poor choices from time to time. And this usually happens because we lack wisdom, knowledge and/or understanding. Without wisdom we will not make wise choices. Without right knowledge we will not make right choices. Without understanding we do not have insight into the consequences of our actions. Nevertheless, neglecting household responsibilities in the name of Christ is not the Christian thing to do.
1 Timothy 5:8
But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
It does not get any clearer than that. So I will leave it right there.