x309.....Spirit-lead Giving--Better than tithing
The New covenant church realized something that many of our churches today do not--They realized that they had no more need of tithing.
they would have felt foolish if they paid a tithe. The tithe they had
payed as Jews was a sin payment--an offering for sin-- the tithe
consisted of fruit grains and the herd--all to be made as sin offering to God. They of course realized--(as we do also) that there is no
longer any need of these sin offerings as we now have the once-for all perfect offering of Christ at the cross.
So, they understood there was no need to pay a tithe which had the purpose
and function of being an offering for sin (as well as
supporting the Levites in their appointed ministry). They realized they had no need to build a temple to God (the veil of the temple had been torn asunder--and they now all were able to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God--they were "the temple of the Holy Spirit"--wherever
they went 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
These things lead them to met in their homes (no need to build a temple)
every day. They had prayer--teaching--prophecy--apostleship
and evangelism--(all the ministries)--as well as feeding the poor--going on 7 days a week perhaps 24 hours a day--available for everyone--just as God is available be for everyone 24 hours a day 7 days a week. The "apostolic method" that Jesus had demonstrated to them was carried out. Groups of people, working together, allowing Christ to continue His ministry through them. This is the true Biblical defintion of "the church".
But they had a better system for giving than the tithe. The tithe was
of the law and therefore was weak in itself. They realized they were no
longer limited in their giving by the tithe--they had something far better--the Spirit of the Lord--dwelling inside of them--to lead them in
their giving (as well as in their ministry and in every aspect of their lives--all the time).
Spirit-lead giving is much more powerful than tithing. They had an amazing result from their Spirit-lead giving-
42* ¶ And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and
fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43* And fear
came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. 44* And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46* And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, 47* Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved. (Acts 2:42-47)
They parted to all as they had need. Therefore none of them lacked anything--since they gave directly to the need.
They operated on a "common" level. No one person exercsied authroity over another--just as Jesus had defined the church system (see Luke 22:25-29--Matthew 20:25-26--Mark 10:42-45)
Now later on, they made a small change NT his system--which proved the undoing of this church in Jerusalem--
32* ¶ And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common. 33* And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. 34* Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, 35* And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. (Acts 4:32-35)
This sounds the same--but there is a small difference--the money is now laid at the apostles feet--and something called "the distribution" is created. (after this the church is seen having problems which result from this distribution--see acts 5-8). The early church made the mistake for this time of not giving directly by the leading of the Spirit--but rather imitating the tithe--by giving all the money to the leaders (the familiar system that they had done in tithing)--but later the church went back to Spirit-lead giving and prosperedunder difficult persecution.
But just think about it--Spirit-lead giving is much more powerful than
legalistic tithing. If we did this in our churches today, no one would
have lack! We would have plenty to feed the poor--no one would be limited by the 10% requirement of the tithe--we could give all that the Spirit lead us to give--and directly to the need. We would receive the full blessing from our giving is we gave directly to those in need--rather than through distribution system or a tithing system.