Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Giving Our Firstfruits

In these tough financial times, many are cutting back on things - even believers in their giving to the church.

Jesus says in Luke 6:38: "Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you".

This past Sunday when I was preparing to write out a check to put in the offering plate, I asked the Lord what did he want me to give. The amount he spoke to me was going to be a stretch for us this week, but I willingly did what he asked, knowing that he would be faithful in his promise of being Jehovah Jireh - my provider. What I wasn't expecting though, was how soon he would show himself in that way!
When I got home from church and finished with brunch, I decided to lay down for a nap, and when I woke up, I came to check my email, and there were two orders in my inbox! After sending an invoice to one, I got an immediate payment. I wrote an email of thanks to this customer, and at the bottom of each of my sent emails, I have a signature that includes links to my website, Etsy, and the TDIPT Mercantile. Within minutes, this same customer that had gotten my email of thanks, had gone to the link to my items on Etsy, and had purchased yet another of of my pieces!

All I could do was say, "Thank you Jesus" over and over again. The total amount that I received just from that one person, was the amount I'd given in church and an overage of the very same amount!

And it just gets better! I sold two items on Ebay yesterday, and again, just kept thanking the Lord for his goodness and faithfulness.

I then listed another item on Etsy, and within minutes of listing it, I received another email saying that I had an order from there that included not only the just listed item, but another one along with it as well!

I'm not telling you any of this to brag, but to encourage you to be faithful to the Lord in your giving - He will prove to you, his faithfulness in his promises from his Word.

I'll close with this passage from Malachi 3:10: "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 you will not have enough room for it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit", says the Lord Almighty.

Trust in the Lord, and especially when you are tempted to cut back on your giving to the church. He will honor you for your obedience, and will reveal himself as Jehovah Jireh - our wonderful and faithful provider.

Have a blessed Tuesday!



Russell Earl Kelly, PHD said...

Tithes are never firstfruits in the Bible. DEu 26:1-10; Neh 10:35-38.

The only way to be blessed by tithing is by observing all 600+ commands of the OT law which is impossible.

Malachi 3:10 has been replaced by Galatians 3:10; 1:8-9; 3:1-2 and 2 Cor 3:10.

Gal 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.

See Deuteronomy 28-29. The entire law was a TEST. Obey and be blessed; disobey and be cursed.

NT giving is primarily sacrificial with no set limit up or down.

For over 150 articles on tithing see: www.tithing-russkelly.com

Janelle said...

Although I accept comments from others, I feel like the comments made by Russell Earl Kelly, were not comments made to exhort anyone else, which was the WHOLE POINT in my post to begin with.
I don't need a lesson on all the scriptures that refer to New Testament passages that show us that we are no longer under the law. I too, have studied the Bible in depth Mr. Kelly - although I might not have a PhD behind my name, I know that it makes no difference whatsoever to my Father in Heaven....
Nowhere in my original post did I say whether the amount the Lord asked me to give was a tithe on my income the past week, or if it were an amount over that. My comment was that it was going to be a stretch for me that week, and the POINT I WAS MAKING WAS THE POINT OF BEING OBEDIENT to the voice of the Lord. PERIOD!
I take the ENTIRE Bible as the Word of God - I am fully aware that Jesus was the fulfillment of the law and of prophecy, therefore freeing me from the curse of sin, but I in no way am going to discount the value of his promises made in the Old Testament regarding giving....


Russell Earl Kelly, PHD said...


Evidently we work from opposite principles.

Mine: Nothing in the OT is to be brought over to the Church after Calvary except that which is repeated to the Church.

Yours?: Everything in the OT is to be brought over to the Church except that which has been repealed in the NT.

Am I correct? If not, then what is the principle you use to bring doctrines over from the OT to the NT after Calvary?

In my opinion it is simply not enough to say "the POINT I WAS MAKING WAS THE POINT OF BEING OBEDIENT to the voice of the Lord. PERIOD!" The question is "What is the voice of the Lord to the Church?" Yours is not a consistent principle to decide how much we want to keep and how much we want to reject from the Law.

"I take the ENTIRE Bible as the Word of God" also but I realize that the Law was given to Old Covenant Israel until the Messiah came. It was never commanded to Gentiles or to the Church. Tithes could not come from land outside Israel. The eternal moral parts of that law survive but I do not see in the pages of Scripture where tithing was an eternal moral principle.

In my opinion the pages of the New Covenant after Calvary provide far superior giving principles based on the self-less-ness and sacrifice of Jesus Christ. There is no need to shackle the church with the law of tithing. Such is contrary to Paul's statements in Galatians 1:8-9; 3:1-2, 10-13.

You have no consistent principle of interpretation which allows you to claim the blessings from tithing while rejecting the other 600+ blessings and curses of the law. They are part of the same law. The blessings of Christians are received as the result of grace and its principles. The same tithing law teaches us that those who receive Levitical tithes are not allowed to own or inherit property. Do you also teach that? Why not?

In Christ

Janelle said...

Mr. Kelly - I am not going to argue the Bible with you - Proverbs 18:2 (which by the way is in the OLD TESTAMENT) says:
"A fool finds no pleasure in understanding, but delights in airing his own opinions".
Now that you have decided to use my blog as an outpost of a place where you can display your own theological doctrines, I will now be moderating all comments before allowing them to post.
The readers of my blog come here for hope, exhortation, and encouragement in the Lord -
You have your own blog - use that as your platform, but know that there will be no more comments from you allowed on this blog again.

Phillane E'lee said...

The Lord blesses us in the same manner when things are tough. Listening to what God wants us to do isn't always easy but in the end if nothing more then a atta boy feeling is far worth it. I recently spoke infront of 300 folks in my church. It was very difficult for me as I am sometimes very shy. I did it, in God's words and if I reached one person it was worth it. Obeying the Lord in this was difficult but again felt very rewarding spirtually. Good for you and your orders.

Bless you