One of the pet doctrines I was always at odds with as a Christian was the tithe. Just out of curiosity I looked up what "Christianity Today" has to say about the subject. Since they are fairly mainstream, at least Evangelical mainstream, I find it interesting what I find there.
For instance, this question and answer:
"Q: The tithe is clearly taught in the Old Testament, but in the New Testament it seems to be downplayed. Are those of us who give 10 percent of our income doing something not required?"
"A: A simple yes or no to this question would be horribly misleading. (D.A. Carson)"
Well is it yes or no Mr. Carson? Christians are continually saying that true Christianity is not about money, but is that really true? Here is a little more of what good old DA had to say:
"...the New Testament provides no passage with the same explicit conclusion. (that 10% should be given)"
So, then that means Christians are not required to give 10% off the top of their incomes to their respective churches then right DA?
Nope, not that easy. As Mr. Carson meanders his way around the question without giving a real solid answer, he finally rests on this conclusion: "So, why not aim for 20 percent in your giving? Or 30? Or more,.."
That's the rub isn't it. Since the New Testament does not obligate Christians to give 10%, somehow it is logical in the mind of a full time paid clergyman that what is intended in the BIBLE is that Christians give MORE than the 10% - MUCH MORE!
These people should be ashamed of the way they heap bigger and bigger burdens on the backs of innocent people.
Just remember kids, it's not about money, it's about giving, and giving and giving...
The embarrassing thing is, that though I would never fall for other types of scam artists who use misleading language to take funds from unsuspecting people, I often felt under condemnation for not being more faithful in my church tax paying. (Tithe=TAX)
I have an opinion as to why Xtianity continues to preach tithe tithe tithe, other than the greed factor of course. I am sure that if the CHURCH ever stopped pushing the tithe thing, they would find that their operating funds would begin to dry up, as generous people gave to other more useful charities, or even used the money improving the lifestyles of their own families. There is quite obviously a lack of FAITH in the Holy Ghost to provide support for all the full time clergy out there who live off the labor of others. A good guilt trip a month or so can predictably bring in more $ than the omnipotent Spirit, or so it seems.
Anyway, if you want to save 10% this Sunday, just stay home from Church.
FULL ORIGINAL ARTICLE HERE
Online Reading List
- An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish by Bertrand Russell (1943)
- Bible Teaching and Religious Practice by Mark Twain
- God is Imaginary
- Is there an Artificial God? by Douglas Adams (1998)
- Skeptics Annotated Bible
- The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine (1795)
- Which Way? by Robert Ingersoll (1884).
- Why I Am Not A Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927)