Giving plays a significant role in our lives as Christians. It is a responsibility and a heartfelt expression of our Christian faith. In my opinion, when we engage in acts of giving, we align perfectly with the teachings and commandments of God. There are so many ways, and so many times I am not sure I am obeying God properly. However, when I am giving, I know I am doing exactly what he has told me to do. But how do I know this? I know from the many tithing and offering Bible verses throughout the Word of God.
What are tithes?
Tithes are voluntary offerings of one-tenth of income rendered to God by giving to the local church that feeds you spiritually and whose lights and air conditioning you soak up on Sundays.
What are offerings?
Church offerings are financial gifts of money given freely to support the church, its ministries, and charitable endeavors. They can be time volunteered, but I like to think of an “offering” as monetary in the modern church.
It starts in the New Testament.
In the New Testament, Jesus sets a powerful example of giving. He teaches us that giving is more blessed than receiving (Acts 20:35). Jesus calls us to go beyond the minimum requirements and give generously from our hearts. Through his selfless sacrifice on the cross, he demonstrated the ultimate act of giving, offering salvation and forgiveness to all who believe in him.
In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’Acts 20:35
Furthermore, I don’t think Christian giving is limited to material possessions alone.
Some say it includes giving our time, talents, and resources to benefit others as well.
Whether volunteering at a local shelter, listening to someone in need, or using our skills to serve our communities, each act of giving has a profound impact. However, that type of giving is NOT the same as the type of giving often found in tithing and offering Bible verses.
Scripture references on giving tithes play a central role in the Christian faith, serving as a foundation for the practice of faithful giving within the community of believers.
In the Old Testament, passages such as Leviticus 27:30 (below) and Deuteronomy 14:22 (below) emphasize the commandment to offer one-tenth of one’s income, known as a tithe, as a means of consecrating the first portion of one’s harvest or income to God.
Those verses highlight the holiness of tithes and their role in supporting the Levites, who had no inheritance and relied on them to sustain their service in the tabernacle or temple.
Furthermore, Malachi 3:8 delivers a stern message regarding tithing, pointing out that withholding tithes is akin to robbing God, underlining the seriousness of this practice in the eyes of the Lord.
In the New Testament, Jesus reaffirms the principle of tithing in Matthew 23:23 (see the scripture below).
At the same time, 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 introduces the concept of “feelings” to our giving. It says we should be cheerful when giving, emphasizing that one’s contribution should stem from a willing and joyful heart rather than compulsion.
Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.2 Corinthians 9:6-7
“Can ya’ll give more money, please?”
When I grew up, it was not uncommon for a bunch of deacons to stop offering and say, “We need 100 more dollars. Raise your hand if you can give $50.00.” Even as a kid, I knew that was the wrong way to approach giving to the Lord. It felt like they were holding the church service hostage until they got what they thought was “humanly” acceptable in the total offering.
It’s almost like an auction. “Can I get %5? Would ya give $10?”
God doesn’t need our help in that way.
A better approach would be for the pastor and ministers to be intentional about teaching biblical tithing and offering through Bible verses. I don’t mean delivering an occasional sermon – I mean conducting a series of teachings to educate the congregation. That would be more effective than resorting to pressure, guilt, and begging. This is solely my opinion.
The references I’ll share on tithing and offering Bible verses would be excellent foundations for such teachings.
While I’m at it, let me get even more petty.
I think tithing and offering are mandates to support the work of the Lord. Those funds should be allocated to help those in need. I don’t believe they should fund a “lifestyle.” Pastors living a Hollywood celebrity lifestyle make folks not want to give – again, it’s my opinion.
It impedes generosity because people may feel that if they [themselves] don’t drive the latest Lexus, why should their pastor? I’m sorry. I said it, and I feel it.
No, tithing and giving should be an act of worship and obedience – we must keep that holy and consecrated and never about personal gain.
Giving makes us more like God.
When we give, we reflect the character of God, who is abundantly and literally “out of the world,” generous and loving to us.
Through our acts of giving, we share God’s love with those around us, bringing hope, joy, and comfort to those who need to see Jesus’ people show up in this world and make an impact! They need to see us serving, giving, and helping to make others’ lives better.
Don’t you agree?
Why don’t people give to the church?
You know, people may have various reasons for not giving to the church. Like some of the shenanigans and foolishness, I listed above. In my summation, one of the key reasons people don’t give is they are worried preaches are crooks. Let’s be real; some of them are, but not all of them.
Before I share the tithing and offer Bible verses, let’s make one thing clear: Your tithing and offering have NOTHING to do with you or the “handlers” here on earth. You are giving to the Lord…because He told you to and because it will give Him pleasure.
If some shady jack-leg preacher mishandles your gift to the Lord, then God help them! They will have to deal with Him. That’s more dangerous than eating a Twinkie in front of a hungry bear.
It’s important to remember that individual motivations for giving or not giving are really highly personal and incredibly diverse. Above, I just shared some of the ones that inhibited me in my younger days. I am better equipped to make those decisions now that I have grown in the Lord.
Ok. Here are some reasons folks don’t give in spite of all the tithing and offering Bible verses:
- Financial Constraints: Many people may face financial difficulties, making it challenging to allocate funds for church giving, especially when they have pressing bills, debts, or other financial obligations. But you’ll never get blessed without trusting God with your finances. I am convinced I’m debt-free to this day because I got serious about giving.
- Lack of Faith or Belief: Some individuals may not have strong faith or trust in God. They don’t believe God is a provider. How can they trust God with their souls but not their paycheck? That’s not right. Something is “off” in that thinking.
- Disagreement with Church Practices: Yep, as I mentioned, some Christians may have reservations about how the church manages its finances or disagrees with certain practices, such as the allocation of funds, which can lead to withholding tithes and offerings.
- Negative Experiences: Dittio. See above. Past negative experiences, such as perceived mishandling of funds, can erode trust and discourage giving.
- Prioritizing Charities: People may prefer supporting charitable organizations or causes that align more closely with their values and interests. For the record, church tithing and offerings are not charity. It is giving to the Lord and obeying his commandments.
- Fear of Judgment: Fear of being judged or criticized by fellow church members or deacons can discourage some from contributing, especially if they can’t give as much as others. I love churches that handle the money without pastors viewing the records. It’s unsuitable for him to know who gives what because some may think he gives preferential treatment to those who give more. His job should be to teach tithing and offering Bible verses – and that’s it.
- Change in Circumstances: Life changes, such as job loss or a sudden decrease in income, can make it difficult for individuals to continue giving as they once did. I feel God gives grace in some situations but wants us to trust Him. So much of our Christian walk is about trusting God. Remember the scripture: And without faith, it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him. Hebrews 11:6
- Generational Shifts: Younger generations, in particular, may have different attitudes toward giving, preferring to support causes with a more immediate and tangible impact—geez and ugh. We have not taught our kids about church and God’s principles.
Random: building projects that never materialize don’t help.
Churches should totally highlight the significance of being responsible with our resources and how giving financially can totally make a rad impact on the Body of Christ.
We seriously cannot sleep on this. We, as parents and those in ministries, really need to embrace the call to give wholeheartedly, knowing that in doing so, we become vessels of God’s love and compassion.
Ok. You came here for tithing and offering Bible verses. So, let’s get at it.
Tithing and Offering Bible Verses
Old Testament Tithing Verses:
- Leviticus 27:30 – “Every tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the trees, is the Lord’s; it is holy to the Lord.”
- Malachi 3:8 – “Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, ‘How have we robbed you?’ In your tithes and contributions.”
- Deuteronomy 14:22 – “You shall tithe all the yield of your seed that comes from the field year by year.”
- Numbers 18:21 – “To the Levites I have given every tithe in Israel for an inheritance, in return for their service that they do, their service in the tent of meeting.”
- Nehemiah 10:38 – “And the priest, the son of Aaron, shall be with the Levites when the Levites receive the tithes. And the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes to the house of our God, to the chambers of the storehouse.”
- Genesis 14:20 – “And blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand!” And Abram gave him a tenth of everything.
New Testament Principles on Tithing:
- Matthew 23:23 – “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others.”
Blessings of Tithing:
- Malachi 3:10 – “Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.”
- Proverbs 3:9-10 – “Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.”
- Luke 6:38 – “Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”
New Testament Principles on Giving:
- 2 Corinthians 9:6 – “The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.”
- 2 Corinthians 9:7 – “Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
- 1 Corinthians 16:2 – “On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come.”
Tithing from a Cheerful Heart:
- 2 Corinthians 8:12 – “For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have.”
- 2 Corinthians 8:9 – “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.”
The Heart of Giving:
- Proverbs 11:25 – “Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.”
- Proverbs 22:9 – “The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor.”
- Philippians 4:19 – “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”
- Psalm 37:25 – “I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread.”
Seeking God’s Kingdom:
- Matthew 6:33 – “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”
Caring for the Needy:
- Proverbs 19:17 – “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.”
- Proverbs 13:11 – “Wealth gained hastily will dwindle, but whoever gathers little by little will increase it.”
- Proverbs 22:7 – “The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.”
- 1 Corinthians 4:2 – “Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.”
- 1 Peter 4:10 – “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.”
Motives for Giving:
- 2 Corinthians 9:11 – “You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God.”
- Romans 12:8 – “The one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.”
Sacrifice and Offering tithing and offering Bible verses:
- Romans 12:1 – “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.”
- Psalm 51:17 – “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.”
Tithing and offering Bible verses revolving around God’s Ownership:
- Haggai 2:8 – “The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, declares the Lord of hosts.”
- Psalm 24:1 – “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.”
Trust in God:
- Proverbs 16:3 – “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.”
- Psalm 118:8 – “It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.”
Tithing and offering Bible verses addressing Contentment:
- 1 Timothy 6:6 – “Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment.”
- Philippians 4:11 – “I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.”
Ok. Here are a few more for you:
- 2 Corinthians 9:12 – “For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God.”
- Exodus 25:2: “Tell the Israelites to bring me an offering. You are to receive the offering for me from everyone whose heart prompts them to give.”
- 1 Chronicles 16:29: “Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; bring an offering and come before him. Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.”
- Psalm 96:8: “Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; bring an offering and come into his courts.”
- Hebrews 13:16: “And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.”
- Matthew 6:3-4: “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
- Luke 21:1-4: “As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. ‘Truly I tell you,’ he said, ‘this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.'”
My personal giving “life.”
As I mentioned, I didn’t really learn to give until I married my husband. I think it is because he really teaches the principles of giving found in those tithing and offering Bible Verses I’ve listed above.
See, I always knew I was “supposed” to give, but I didn’t have enough information to know how to stand on God’s Word. As a result, I was hoarding my money for far too many years. Or, if I did tithe, I would give only after I paid the bills. Thinking back to all those years, I think I would give less than I should – like what was left after the taxes – if I gave that much at all.
Do you see the problem with this? My stinginess and disobedience were a testament to my mistrust of God. I didn’t trust Him to care for me, so I had to take care of myself first (i.e., paying my bills first). Wrong.
However, I’ve learned better.
Now, I try to render my tithe before I pay any bills. God is first and should be first. Whatever is left goes to my savings and my bills. But God is premier in every part of my life. He gets the FIRST of my pay.
Another thing. I never say “pay” tithes. Shucks, I don’t pay them. How could I ever pay God???? No, I render my tithes in hopes it is acceptable to Him.
Remember the following scripture, Matthew 5:23-24
“So when you offer your gift to God at the altar, and you remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there at the altar. Go and make peace with that person, and then come and offer your gift.”
It speaks to the fact that our offering should be handled with integrity, clean hands, and a clean heart. This confirms that God is not after our money but our hearts. For so many of us, our finances are linked to our hearts.
Of course, I have a scripture to prove this:
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also…” Matthew 6:21
Yes, there is a connection between our heart condition and our wallet. Want to see what is important to you? Look at your last three bank statements. Then, you will see.
So there you have it. Those are some great scriptures and thoughts
A great resource I’ve found
Have you heard of Randy Alcorn? His Biblical perspectives on giving are phenomenal! Check out his book called The Treasure Principle. We read this as a church years ago (my husband is so amazing:).
Here is an interview featuring Randy Alcorn:
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