And God is able to make all grace (every favor and earthly blessing) come to you in abundance, so that you may always, under all circumstances and whatever the need, be self-sufficient, possessing enough to require no aid or support and be able to provide abundantly for every good work and charitable donation. 2 Corinthians 9:8 (Freely translated from the Amplified Bible).

The first use of money, the “seed for the sower,” translates for us as the tithe. It is the first thing we should do with the money we receive. We must give or return to God what belongs to Him before using the money for anything else. In our study of tithing, let’s begin by answering some simple questions such as what, where, when, why, and how.

WHAT: The word tithe comes from the Hebrew word maaser, which means “ten percent.” Can you give a tithe of 12%? No! Can you give a tithe of 8%? No! You can only give a tithe that is ten percent (10%) because the word means 10%. Thus, giving the tithe is simply administering on behalf of the Lord ten percent of the gross income made available to us. The question of whether the tithe is calculated on net or gross income arises only if we do not understand how the spirit of Mammon operates. The goal is not to keep more for ourselves but to simply set aside what God says belongs to Him. Since He is the source of our provision, there is no doubt that our needs will be met. Giving the tithe is actually an act of spiritual warfare as we return to God what is His due.

The way to calculate the tithe may vary slightly depending on how the income is given. If your primary source of income is a salaried job, and you receive a regular paycheck, then the tithe is simply calculated as 10% of the gross salary. If you are self-employed or a business owner, you may not receive a regular salary but rather pay yourself from your business profits. In this case, your tithe is 10% of the profit or the increase in your business. If the business generates a gross profit of 7%, and the owner gives 10% of the revenue as a tithe, he will experience a net loss of 3% per month. This business owner will not stay in the market for long if he continues this practice.

I (Craig) have a friend who is a dairy farmer. He has a wonderfully disposed heart towards God. The Lord convicted him that he had not been tithing as he should. He repented and started tithing on his business’s gross revenue. After a certain period, my friend noticed that his savings were depleting, and he was increasingly overdrawing his account month after month. It didn’t take long for his banker to call for an explanation and help him realize that his business was making less than 10% profit. The banker helped my friend understand that he was supposed to tithe 10% of his business profit, not 10% of its revenue.

People who generate money through real estate management or investments sometimes have difficulty calculating their tithe because they never actually receive the profit in cash but rather reinvest it. In this case, it involves calculating the actual profit from each transaction and giving 10% of that profit as a tithe. While we are discussing what the tithe is, let’s talk a bit about what it is not. Tithing is not the solution to all your financial problems. Well-meaning Christians have told some: “If only you would start tithing, your financial problems would be solved.”

Tithing is not the answer to your financial problems. Again, many people have tried to implement a simple practice without understanding the wisdom behind it. Tithing is a good thing, but some Christians believe in the principle of tithing instead of believing in God as their source. The solution to your financial problems lies in your relationship with Jesus Christ and the trust you have in Him.

Tithing does not result in a better reputation in God’s eyes. God does not appreciate or favor those who tithe more than those who do not. It is faith in the blood of Jesus Christ that results in God’s favor and a right standing before Him. If this is not established, then we are relying once again on our works in the hope that they will give us a good reputation before God.

Tithing does not remove financial curses. Tithing with the right attitude can prevent future financial disasters, while not tithing can have serious negative consequences on your future financial situation. However, tithing does not chase away a curse. Many have been taught, based on Malachi 3:9-10, that:

If you do not tithe, you are cursed with a curse.”

And you say: In what have we robbed You? In tithes and offerings! You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.” Malachi 3:8-10

In fact, it is impossible to drive away any curse by any good action on your part, however good it may be. Only faith in the blood of Jesus Christ can remove a curse, and it does (Galatians 3:13-14). The application of the blood of Jesus to the curse already on you is essential to keep it away from you. What is this curse? God wants us to operate according to the financial principles of His Kingdom.

When we do not tithe, we put ourselves at the mercy of the world’s system and what it can bring us. This system is cursed because it is controlled by Satan. What will get us out of this cursed system is repentance from dead works (the world’s system), faith in the blood of Jesus, and trust that our Lord will provide for our needs.

WHERE: Malachi 3:10 tells us to bring the tithe into the “storehouse.” We believe the storehouse is the local assembly where you are spiritually fed and surrounded by pastoral care. We do not believe the storehouse includes missions, radio or television ministries, or the Christian school your children attend. Your storehouse is that local assembly where there are people who know you, care for you, and to whom you have granted spiritual pastoral authority over you.

WHEN: The tithe should be given at the time the income is received. We believe it should be given on a weekly or monthly basis, depending on whether the income is weekly or monthly. As mentioned earlier, if a person generates their income primarily through real estate transactions or investments, so that they do not have regular income, the tithe should be calculated and given each time a transaction occurs, even if there is no actual money received. I have noticed that when this is not done, very often people never end up tithing on the increase of their investments.

This text is an excerpt from the book “Wealth, Riches & Money” written by Craig Hill, Earl Pitts.

We invite you to read the following article “Facing Your Debts 1”.

[Note (1): When questioned on this point at conferences in Europe, Earl Pitts clarifies that by gross salary he means the total value of the employee’s compensation, that is, the net part for the employee increased by all contributions, both the employee’s and employer’s share. These contributions are merely social security deductions which under more liberal economic regimes the employee would be likely to pay or save himself (this was especially the case in the economy of biblical times) from the total amount the employer agrees to pay for him.]

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