Note: I originally wrote this article back in February of 2012 on my old blog. This subject came up recently in a class I was teaching, and I thought this would be a good time to post it here on my current site. Since the main goal is to bring a clear definition to the word “tithe” I have decided to file it under my Christian Dictionary category.
There are many different types of offerings described in the Bible. In the Old Testament, instructions are given for tithes (Deut 14:22), wave offerings (Ex 29:27), burnt offerings (Lev 9:16), first fruits (Lev 23:9-14), and sin offerings (Num 29:11), just to mention a few.
In the New Testament, instructions are given for free will offerings (2 Cor 9:7), and there are many examples of being generous and sharing with others (Acts 2:44-45).
Problems and confusion come in when you mix and match the different offerings and their associated instructions, selecting which parts to keep and which parts to ignore. The purpose of this study is to examine the offering known as tithing, giving an overview of the practice as it is defined in the Bible. Continue reading →
O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified?
This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?—
Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?
Have you suffered so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?
Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Galatians is a letter that was written to some people that had become Christians as a result of Paul’s preaching in their region. When Paul first came to these people, he told them the good news about Jesus. Jesus had died for their sins, and now God was offering eternal life to them. They believed the message, accepted the offer, and were born again (John 3:3-8) into God’s family and kingdom. Continue reading →
Title: The Baptism with the Holy Spirit part 2 – Purposes and Benefits of Speaking in Tongues
Subject Matter: When God started the church on the day of Pentecost, He gave every member (Acts 2:4) the power to speak in tongues as a part of the Baptism with the Holy Spirit. This ability an important tool that He provides for His children, and that He desires all of His children to receive. In this class, we go through some of the benefits that come as a result of speaking in tongues.
Title: The Full Gospel part 2 – Grace and Faith vs Law and Religion
Subject Matter: Christianity is about man relating to God through Christ. It is a relationship, not a religion. This relationship is part of the gospel message, and it is a result of what Christ did on the cross. In this teaching we explore the contrast between relating to God through religion, as opposed to relating to Him as our Father in heaven.
Subject Matter: This is the third part of a series on healing. Sometimes sickness and other issues can be the result of demonic influence. In this class we talked about how to stand your ground against the enemy by using the authority given to you by Jesus.
Growing up in church, one of the words I heard used from time to time that I didn’t really understand was “sanctified” or “sanctification.”
Based on the way I heard it used, I came to believe that sanctification meant something like this: “A change in behavior that occurs over time where the Christian sins less and less.” It was often referred to as “the process of sanctification.” Basically, it seemed to mean that you were growing in your ability to avoid sin, both externally and internally. Continue reading →
Title: The New Covenant part 7 – Righteous by Faith
Subject Matter: God makes us righteous when we choose to put our faith in Jesus. Our righteousness comes to us as a gift from God, not as an accomplishment that we work toward. That is the subject of the final teaching in this series.
Title: The New Covenant part 6 – Eternal Redemption
Subject Matter: In this class we spend nearly the entire time in Hebrews chapters 8-10. We were talking about how revolutionary this letter would have been to the original audience. We used the historical and cultural context of the letter to help us grasp the gravity of this fact: Jesus offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, and then sat down (Hebrews 10:12). We also used all of this context to help shed light on some passages that sometimes are difficult to understand.