The Store House— Passionate Tithers and the Non-Tithers

Hello Lovely Family, Welcome to the 2nd part of the #Tithingseries. This post is more in a story format but passes on the message. Monday is around the corner already and we will be posting the 3rd post. Stay tuned and now Dig in to this deliciously prepared meal.

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Woe unto you God-robbers? (Malachi 3:8-10)

All my life I knew I couldn’t rob God. I mean, who could? Every Sunday, right after Choir ministrations, I would watch that brother or sister get up the pulpit and resonate that repetitive warning from scriptures to those bold enough to think they can steal from the Almighty. Week on week, I watched this slim brother, who always wore colorful suits to service, take out clean notes from his pockets and put them in a tithe envelope with deep piety to the doctrine. I admired him so much, I asked God with a burning desire to bless me abundantly so someday I could afford to pay tithes like this big-nose-brother in colorful suits. Few years later, my friend’s elder brother Obi saw me greet him and asked if I knew him. I admitted to him being my church member and He whispered mockingly to me about how he was a successful Corporate Hustler (aka yahoo boy). “God must really be blessing his hustle because his tithes are coming in fat every Sundays”, I wondered to myself that day.

The day I earned my first holiday hustle which was big enough for me to pay a tithe of about 500NGN, I was tempted to let it pass when those woeful warning hit me hard somewhere in my soul. I pictured the strict faces of those teachers on the pulpit say to me “will a man rob God…” I couldn’t imagine puny mortal me robbing the Almighty immortal God so I gave myself some sense and prepared for Sunday. After all, being warned or not, I know if I give my tithes, a blessing would be unleashed from the windows [and flood gates of Heaven] and there will not be room enough to receive it.

I tried as often as possible to pay my tithes. Like every sin, one day I fell to the urge of chopping God’s 10% and like the first sin of purity it became a major battle. There is a human nature of robbing God just like our primordial parents (Adam & Eva) robbed (to unlawfully take) the only thing that belonged to God in Eden and I had begun to perfectly display those spiritual robbery traits. As far as I knew it, I had to pay my tithes and not paying it was a sin. A really big sin!

 

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No tithes in Rome

Many years passed and in 2010 I experienced my first spiritually intellectual conversion to Rome. That was when I had first become Catholic and I had the burning passion to share all the knowledge I had read about God and the History of Christianity and the Holy Catholic Church etc. but most importantly, I had just rekindled the burning passion to be Christian. I had to follow Christ in all totality and now I was convinced I had found His Church which was built on the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, it was definitely time to follow God truly.

One beautiful Saturday, at the Opus Dei Centre in Akoka, I went to meet with Fr. Jude because I was becoming Catholic now and since I wouldn’t be having a pastor anymore, I had to find a new minister who I can actually pay my obligatory 10% to and feel like I am giving a real priest like a traditional Israelite would. After all, in the old testament tithes were paid to priests, so therefore I will joyfully give this priest my money, I told myself, feeling accomplished. After declaring my intention to this Priest with the Holy Pride of a new convert, he gave me the most shocking response that day. Fr. Jude assured me that the Holy Catholic Church does not teach the doctrine of tithe making me realize that since her foundation on the Apostles and prophets she has never put any Christian under the obligation to pay a tithe. All the Church had ever taught was the obligation to give. He advised me further to feel free to give my tithes, if I want to, but most importantly give as much as I can and understand that it’s important to give from the heart no matter the measure.

I went home with two things that day. Firstly, a freedom from the guilt of sin which was a pure reflection of the liberating power of the gospel to free us from sin; and lastly, an anger on whoever the unknown person must have been who invented the burden of tithing and placed it on Christians in recent generations. I dedicated myself to looking for scriptures that refute tithes rather than looking to understand why God ever introduced tithing as a Law on Israel. I never really knew a day would come when I would be more focused on understanding and discovering the hidden mystery of the store house

The Store House… Introduction

Hello Lovely Family. It is with great joy that we would be sharing the next 8 posts. It’s titled #TheStorehouse and it is all about #Tithing. You think you know everything there is to know about tithing, then  #Getreadytobeschooled. It’s going to be #1monthofawesomeness served by the Wonderful Ugo. So stay tuned and enjoy the ride for the next 1 month. We would be dishing out this delicious meal every Monday and Friday. Now dig in.

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My dear friends, the Church in Nigeria is faced with a doctrinal crisis that has shifted from a simple refute of doctrines to a battle of vulgarity. In the past weeks I have watched how revered men of God who have always taught a sola scriptura (by scripture only) path to holiness adopt intelligent arguments to support tithing without concrete use of the scriptures. Yet I have seen a new teacher, Daddy freeze, he definitely deserves to be called a teacher, use the scriptures to tear down all arguments for tithing with articulate scriptural quotes and an albeit disrespectful attitude that would make people who are emotionally sensitive to elders unable to see beyond how unloving he has been in addressing various misconceptions. I have been on all sides of this argument and I have also experienced some of the emotions of anger well up at some of the recent declarations of curses adopted by these mighty preachers. As a guy with a passion for the things of God and understanding the deeper mysteries of scriptures, I took it upon myself some weeks ago to do a mini research on the subject and I can say this intellectual journey has been more spiritual than I anticipated.

The things of the Spirit

For me who would never claim sole understanding of the Spirit of God, I would say I feel fortunate to have learnt this commonly believed truth which no longer seems so common. For those of you reluctant to read your bibles, I would, at this point, request that you have your bibles with you because I will not paraphrase most things for you, like I love to. I will leave you to read up the verses I would refer to you so that I can leave your mind open to new revelations in case you might see more than I have and be willing to share with me. I want to also say everything I am writing are not my personal knowledge. I heard most from the debating parties. Some I can relate with, others I stand firmly against but all parties are well respected for how much they have helped me come to this knowledge of the truth. Most importantly I am grateful for the Fathers of the Church whose wisdom I can always lean on to confirm if anything I have learnt from scripture is in any way heretic from the teachings of the first 5 generations of Christians and the Didache (Gk. teachings) of the Apostles.

A brief warning to readers: After the personal stories to be shared, I would take you on my scriptural, theological and spiritual journey on tithing. Make sure you have a bible and read for yourselves because the quoting will begin. I will share all I have read from the scriptures on my own and share with you my understandings. Then also I will quote some ancient Fathers of the Church just to show you that this matter of tithes don tey wen e don dey bother Christians. I have used the same constructive method I used to discover Christianity and the Church which is subjecting myself to a deep study of scriptures and after which searching the Christian teachings of the first 5 centuries to see just how far back all I have discovered were true and I will leave you to see for yourself if this is not the Holy Spirit teaching you something new in your generation which was received from Christ and passed down to His Apostles and their successors, The Fathers of the Church.

 

I know the suspense is much but we want you to come back so stay Tuned and see you on Friday.

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