Tuesday, August 13, 2002

It's All About The Money

Rachel Cunliffe is a young New Zealander who has a keen mind and an open heart. She writes in her blog today journal: "It's all about the money".

Someone in her church, at a congregational meeting walked out over the preacher's comments that tithing is directly linked to blessing. Rachel is irritated by the idea of tithing and concludes that the Old Testament law of tithing has been abolished by the New Covenant of Christ.

Many in the church (and it was my initial impulse) would debate the Biblical issue with Rachel. Instead, I have tried to listen and truly understand her on this issue. Here is the comment I posted on her blog:

Rachel said, "I wonder how much of offering money goes to the things Jesus cares about... "

With such a heated topic, I think it wise to start with how much I enjoy this blog. Rachel shares her heart with the world. This is a very humble discipline, which I really appreciate.

As a pastor of a church plant with an ever tightening budget, this is a very real issue for us. Is the real problem tying tithing to blessing or is the problem just tithing in itself? (That is a real question, not one I plan to answer.)

My hope is to have a church where your commitment to tithing is a honest commitment to the vision of the church. Rachel's comments encourage me to once again give utmost and serious thought to our 2003 budget, and my hope is, as we ask for congregational support of this budget, Rachel's question "I wonder how much of offering money goes to the things Jesus cares about... " will be easily answered. But that is only guaranteed when we have voices that question. Thanks Rachel.

We must engage people's thinking, not slam them over the head with Doctrinal stance.

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