What is Tithing?
A tithe—which just means “tenth”—is defined as the first 10% of a person’s income before taxes or anything else comes out. The Bible says we can take the promises of God to the bank. When we bring our first and best back to God, He promises to bless the rest. We can’t outgive God. We know tithing is a huge step of obedience, but you’re not in this alone! Check out the video to learn more.
The Bible asks us to give our first and our best back to God, and He will bless the rest. We return to the Lord 10% of what He's given us because it belongs to Him.
If you're not tithing already, a great way to start is with the Three-Month Tithe Challenge. Essentially, it's a contract based on the promises of God in Malachi 3:10.
"Test me in this … and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it."Malachi 3:10 NIV
Giving our tithes and offerings reflects a grateful heart that wants to give back to God a portion of what He has given us; in reality, what is already His. This is our opportunity to show God that He is first in our lives. The Bible says, The purpose of tithing is to teach you always to put God first in your lives (Deuteronomy 14:23 TLB). Tithing is a reminder that God is the supplier of everything we have. It is also God’s personal invitation to an outpouring of his blessing in your life.
Joy in Giving
The Bible says, “God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). You may be asking – how can I be happy to give my money away? It starts by realizing that everything belongs to God (Psalm 24:1). We are only managers (or stewards) of all that God has given. So when we give to God, we are really giving BACK to Him. Giving to God’s work also make a huge difference in people’s lives; it is the best way to spend what God has given us.
Giving is RESPONDING to the Lord – it is actually an act of worship! We are thanking God for all He has given us, and for all He has done. God puts His money and resources in our hands so that we can make a difference for Him. God trusts us with His gifts – so that our lives can be changed as we bless others. When we do that we become, well – cheerful!
Growing in Giving
Many people who come to Quest have never given to a church before. So where do you start? First, remember the teachings of Jesus on money (He taught more on giving than anything else). He told us “wherever your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matt 6:21) Start by realizing that your heart is affected by the money you have, and where you spend it and give it. To grow your heart closer to Christ, give to His work.
Step 1: Start by giving regularly to the Lord
Start by giving something – even if it is only $1 – on a regular basis. This will grow the habit of giving in your life. Your giving should be financial gifts, but also worship helping in ministry, and time every day with God. This starts you on the path towards God, and growing to generosity. This will move your heart (Matt 6:21) and remind you that it all belongs to God (Psalm 24:1).
Step 2: Grow to budgeted giving
The next step is to start giving a PERCENTAGE of all God has given you. This is when we take out our budgets (or maybe you are going to make one!) and really plan on giving generously to God's work. Jesus teaches us to "store up our treasures in heaven", not on earth, and to "seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and God will give you everything you need." (Matt 6:19-20, 33). We give to empower the work of God in the church and the world - and in our lives. This also allows us to support those who are leading us (1 Timothy 5:17-18). This level of giving means we will give up some of what we want in order to bless others and be obedient - our hearts are changing. This is the type of giving we need to train our children in, too. As we let go of our finances we learn to trust God more, and His work does more in us and in others.
10% – Many have heard that God called people to give 10 percent of their income (the “tithe”; Malachi 3:8-10). At Quest, we believe 10% is a great goal and standard to set for giving. It is a commitment we make to be faithful to God, even when it is hard. If you are not already giving 10% (or more), make a goal to grow your giving by 1-2% a year until you have reached at least 10%. This will cause you to rethink your spending and your debt, and you may even need financial advice (which we can help with!). This is obedient giving, and it changes your heart in new ways as you give even when it is hard, and see God work even when things are tight. Your heart prioritizes differently as you choose God’s work over things you want. You grow to realize that God is the treasure of life (see Genesis 14:17-15:1). God challenges us to give at least 10% so that we can grow closer to Him and make a difference.
Step 3: Experience the joy sacrificial giving.
The last step in giving is where generosity is truly unleashed, and followers of Christ use the gifts God has given them to leave a legacy for God. This is where people will give above and beyond 10% of their giving. This is where generosity is planned – giving part of a raise or bonus, supporting missionaries or kids going to camp, or giving to a capital campaign. Barnabas sold a field that he owned and gave it to those in need (Acts 4:36-37), David gave out of his own account for the Temple (1 Chronicles 29:3-5; literally “tons” of gold and silver) and the church in Philippi repeatedly gave above and beyond to support the church planting mission work of Paul (Philippians 4:15). This is the level where people give in amazing ways and their generosity does amazing things.
The giving on this level is sacrificial, and is on top of the 10% that is giving. Growing to this level takes financial wisdom and a desire to make a difference more than being comfortable. This giving truly unleashes the heart to be able to give the way God gives – with generosity. This level of giving grows believers to the point where they look for opportunities to give more, where they know they are blessed to be a blessing, and their hearts are set on God and full of joy as they give and live a generous life.
90 Day Generosity Challenge
Countless people experience God's blessings when they become intentional with their generosity, but often the first step is the hardest one to take. That’s why we created the 90 Day Generosity Challenge. Put God first in your finances for 90 days, and see how He works not just in your finances, but in your relationships and in your soul.
Our First, And Our Best. The Bible asks us to give our first and our best back to God and He will bless the rest. This first is the tithe, or tenth, of our income. We return to the Lord 10% of what He's given us because it belongs to Him. The tithe is a very practical and tangible way to put God first. If you are not tithing already, a great way to start is with the 90 Day Generosity Challenge. If you can’t yet commit to 10%, then pick a percentage and begin to practice intentional generosity.
How to win with Finances
"Plans fail for a lack of counsel, but with many advisors they succeed." - Proverbs 15:22
We’ve all needed help with our finances at one time or another. There’s no shame in that. So if you’re feeling stuck in your finances, or just not sure where to go for help understanding it all, we’ve gathered together some tools and resources to help you. Click here to learn about How to win with Finances.