Thursday, January 24, 2019


There are times in my life that God does not operate according to my calendar and I find myself waiting upon Him.  The truth of the matter is that patience is a virtue and it is also a supernatural by product that comes from the Holy Spirit as we walk in fellowship with God.  Being patient is a vital part of trusting in God, as our life circumstances are not always what we would prefer.  Practicing patience is a matter of trusting in the wisdom, power, and sovereignty of God during times in our lives when life does not make sense to us.  How is a Christian to rest with the confidence that God is at the helm even in our darkest hours?  Is it possible to trust the heart of God even when we can’t trace His hands?
God provides comfort, encouragement, and promises for His people through His Word.  Please take the time to read these seven references and rest upon the comfort of His Word.
Ephesians 4:1-3, “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
Galatians 6:9, “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.”
1 Corinthians 13:4-7, “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.  Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
Philippians 4:6-7, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Proverbs 15:18, “A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, but he who is slow to anger quiets contention.”
Romans 12:2, “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.”
Psalm 37:7-9, “Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for Him; fret not when men prosper in their ways, when they carry out wicked schemes.  Refrain from anger and abandon wrath; do not fret—it can only bring harm.  For the evildoers will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.”

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Does the Bible Still Say to Tithe?

When people ask this question they are often asking whether or not God requires them to give 10% of their income to the church.  Both the Old and New Testaments say a lot about giving and the use of personal possessions for God’s glory.  I strive never to manipulate or pressure people to give, as it is a matter of the heart between God and the Christian.  My duty is to preach the Word of God faithfully and help God’s people to understand that our giving is an act of worship and a matter of the heart. 

The Old Testament tithe was an Old Testament practice, which was eradicated when Jesus Christ gave Himself on the cross of Calvary for our sins (Matt. 5:17-18; Rom 10:4; Gal. 3:23-25; and Eph. 2:15).  Jesus Christ was the righteous fulfillment of every aspect of the Old Testament Law.  Christians are no longer under the Law of God but under the Covenant of Grace.  However, God still calls Christians to His high standards of holiness and yet it is only possible because of Jesus Christ’s imputation of holiness upon those who believe in Him.   

Over the years the Christian church appears to have adopted 10% as the measurement to give to their local church.  Many who embrace that amount do so because of the teaching in the Old Testament.  Actually, the Old Testament Law required multiple tithes, which if combined, would be in excess of 25% of their income.  I would agree that this is a good and reasonable practice.  The New Testament also provides instruction on giving, which is giving with “great generosity” and with a “joyful heart” (1 Cor. 16:2; 2 Cor. 9:7).  According to the New Testament, there is no set amount or recommended amount of giving.  However, Christians are called to give generously, sacrificially, and joyfully.  They are called to respond to needs without restraints and to trust God in great faith for His provision.

I do not desire to be legalistic about giving; however, many Christians struggle with how much they should give.  It can be said that the Old Testament provides a framework under a system of Law in terms of how much to give, which was at least 10%.  We are blessed to live under the Covenant of Grace because of the work of Jesus Christ.  Praise God we are not bound to laws that we could never fulfill.  It could be said, “How much more should we desire to bless God with as we live under this amazing Covenant of Grace?”  Christ taught regularly about the struggle between one’s possessions and eternal matters.  In fact, He said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

I believe that the joy of giving stems from being touched by the grace of God and personally being the recipient of the Gospel of Christ.  Our duty is to bring our offerings as an act of worship and praise to God.  It should be given with a heart that is fixed on advancing God’s church and the Gospel Message.  Those who struggle with giving miss out on the blessing of honoring God with their material resources that God has entrusted to each believer.  We as Christians are stewards of what God has blessed us with.  Ultimately, we are accountable to Him in terms of how we give, share, and manage those resources.

Please know, as your pastor, my wife and I count it an honor to give and want to be an example to the flock of God in this area.  God has called us to worship Him with all that we are and all that we have.  May He never be disappointed.