Remember I mentioned in this post that there is plenty gist abi! Well, while I was away, there’s this hot gist in Nigeria about “TITHING” To Tithe or Not to Tithe. I am sure that you can already tell I am #TeamTithing 😆. There are some issues I really don’t always like to get into because I am of the opinion that, I know what I know. However, as christians, I feel we owe it to one another especially christians who are trying to grow to weigh into certain issues. And one of such issue is this Tithing Saga.
I came across this beautiful post by my friend turned brother I call him Mr Effectivity Baba, his name is Adeleke David Adekunle and I couldn’t help but ask him to share his thoughts on the blog as it captures my thoughts exactly about the whole issue on tithing. Enjoy Reading and let me know your thoughts in the comment session below.
Some matters are just internal and unworthy of public intervention. In every family, there is family business; and family matters are never taken for public hearing. Any intervention is warded off, as an intrusion. Tithing is a family matter deserving pure internal attention.
In my view, if you have misgivings of any kind about tithing, walk up to your pastor and call him to accountability. Ask him, what’s his salary, who handles the tithes and offerings, and how is the money used.
If you don’t trust the pastor of the church where you worship, FIND one you trust. Remember, each one is to WORK OUT his salvation with fear and trembling.
Tithes aren’t exactly compulsory; however, they are strongly recommended. If you don’t want to pay tithes, it’s okay to keep it as your personal conviction. God never commissioned anyone to preach the message of tithing; if you’re on such a campaign, God didn’t send you – you sent yourself. God has one single message: THE GOOD NEWS OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD.
There’s absolutely no controversy about tithing. The controversy that there is, is ACCOUNTABILITY. To this end, these are my submissions:
- The law requires every registered church to file their annual financials to the Corporate Affairs Commission, though it is not enforced. That’s what the recent Financial Reporting Bill A good number of churches do this; you may never be told it’s done.
- Pastors don’t always have access to church finance, especially when the church runs an efficient system. In most organized churches, there is a board of trustees that makes official and management decisions; not the pastor. The pastor is the voice, not the brain.
- Most “flashy” pastors are blessed from without. All manner of unimaginable gifts flow in to them as God blesses them. Since they don’t periodically give account of their gifts, we generally mistake their standard of living for misappropriation of church funds. Think of it, how many of us periodically tell our boss what gifts we receive outside the office? We argue, “it’s none of their business!”A few pastors try to do this just to clear the air among their church members. I recall a time when my pastor suddenly started wearing a series of exotic jackets; at first I wondered the source, then I was privileged to learn that someone single-handedly gave him a full wardrobe of those jackets! I could have started a campaign on the flamboyance of pastors, but that would have been my foolishness.
- If you truly really want financial accountability in your church, ask for it – if you have been giving there. I am aware that some churches give financial summaries to their volunteers. For security reasons, in Nigeria, it’s not wise to do that publicly. Pastors have family members who love them and need them to be safe. Pastors, in your local assembly, teach your people – especially the youth population – the tenets of giving and the foundation upon which it is done. Teach them that we give as an expression of love, and not as duty. We give as a lifestyle, and not as mandated. ALL we give is given out of FREEWILL, not coercion. There is no better opportunity to educate this generation of millennials than now. There are questions burning in their hearts, and they grew up learning that “thoughts and feelings are to be shared” with the world on social media. It’s not their fault; they just want to know, and need you to answer their aching hearts.
- The law in Nigeria, and in most countries around the world preserve the fundamental right of every individual to religion and belief. It is a violation of the fundamental rights of others when you forcefully impute your convictions on them. They don’t have to agree with you. If you don’t want to tithe, make it your personal conviction; don’t attempt to revolutionize the entire church into it, just as you were not forced to accept salvation. We must do all AS UNTO THE LORD, in the spirit of tolerance, unity and cohesion of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
- There are bad eggs in church, no doubt, just as there are bad people in workplaces and in government. This is not peculiar to the church; it’s a peculiarity that is common where human beings are found. Nigeria’s social system is not worse than it is because of the influence of the church on it. A lot goes on unknown to many of us, and of a truth, the church is performing at record trends for a country this plundered. Many people have been rescued from becoming homeless, others assisted with healthcare, some sponsored through school, others just evading crime and unlawful acts.When Makurdi was flooded recently, the church stepped in, and many people became even better off than before the flood. Weekly, prisoners receive visitors from the church bearing hope and meals in their hands. Hospitals are not left out. They may not come in the name of a denomination, but they are Ambassadors for Jesus Christ carrying out their ministry. The church of Jesus in Nigeria should be raised in our conversations.
- No man is absolute. On your own, you can’t be a body of knowledge for the church. It is prideful to attempt to be. We have one teacher, The Holy Spirit, and whatever the Holy Spirit teaches you in your privacy, subject to the reasoning with other believers in your church gathering. Think of Apollos, an eloquent speaker who knew scriptures well, and taught with an enthusiastic spirit and with accuracy (Acts 18:24-28). Much as knew, he only knew in part. Priscilla and Aquila TOOK HIM ASIDE and explained more accurately to him, the way of God. They didn’t expose his shortcoming. That’s how family matters are handled – away from public hearing. Apollos was humble enough to listen and receive, rather than boasting in the depth of revelation he received from God. That’s why we sharpen one another, and edify one another as members of the same body. We cannot do without one another (1 Corinthians 12:12-31).
All I’m saying is, pattern your discourse after the apostles, and whatever you say or do, DO IT IN LOVE, as UNTO THE LORD.
Whosoever is not for us, is against us; and Christ will build His church that the gates of hell will not prevail against it. For the Lord knows them that are His; so, let everyone that is called by the name of Christ (Christians) depart from doing wrong.
Till my Next Post; Stay Blessed.