It is important when studying Scripture that proper use of hermeneutics and exegesis is applied. Not only do I encourage this Bible study method, but an example of this studying habit is found in a group of people Paul preached to in Acts 17:11. That group of people responded to Paul’s Gospel message not by accepting what he said willy, nilly, but they searched the Scriptures to see if his message lined up with the Scriptures. Paul writes, “These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so” (NKJV). In my upcoming book, KLEPTOMANIAC, Who’s Really Robbing God Anyway, I go into detail to explain what is involved when you search the Scriptures by defining the meaning of search in Greek. Here’s a short excerpt from my upcoming book:
The word search in Greek is “anakrino,” (Strong’s #350). It is the act of examining the Scriptures beyond reading the text. This Greek word “anakrino” is found in Acts 17:11 and is a verb which implies action and encourages one to scrutinize, investigate, interrogate, judge, determine, and examine Scripture. Examining also involves asking questions.[i]
Strong’s, #350, Greek, “Anakrino,” ©2001, 21.
No person who sits in the church pews should be passive listeners of the word, but should be active participants in the study of the Scriptures. That is what the Thessalonica congregation did when they researched Paul’s message. It is also what I did when I searched the Scriptures about tithing. And what I discovered over the years has literally brought tears to my eyes. Tithing is not a subject you just read verses about and think you understand. It takes a lot more than reading Bible verses, and the people in Thessalonica prove that point. My video examines the tithe and all its variations. Though I talk about tithing in the language of first, second and third tithe and the festival and poor tithe, I am not settled on how many tithes Israel had. And because I’ve searched, studied, investigated, judged, determined and examined the Scriptures like the Greek word for search implies, I know my research is true because I searched the Scriptures to see if tithing was money or food much like the Thessalonians did with Paul’s message.
The slides in this post were not discussed specifically in the video but they are connected to another group of people who ate the tithe. In my book, I talk about the poor receiving the tithe every third year. As you begin to pick apart every aspect of tithing from a scholarly perspective, you have to decide on what path you will take in searching for the truth. You can either let others study for you or you can take the Bible and begin your own personal journey. I learned a great deal about the subject and a whole lot more about God and his character in dealing with his people. When I started studying tithing, I assumed the Levites were the only people who received the tithe. As I dug deeper, little did I know that poor people were recipients of the tithe too. Read the slides and listen to the video.
If the poor received the tithe in the Old Testament, why are poor people not receiving the tithe today? Some people will say that all I post is non-tithing information. But don’t worry I have a complete power point presentation on New Testament giving and you won’t miss a thing because that information will be posted. On the issue of multiple tithes in Israel, I mention both views about first, second and third tithes. In the video, I mentioned the plurality of the word tithes and stated that there are different schools of thought one the plurality of the word tithes.
On the issue of multiple tithes in Israel, I mentioned both views about first, second and third tithes. In the video, I mentioned the plurality of the word tithes and stated that different schools of thought existed on the issue. Some view the plurality of the word tithes to mean multiple tithes and others view the plurality of the word tithes as nothing more than the tithes that came from the 12 tribes who tithed to Israel. One of the research books that I read in my tithe studies addressed this matter of the plurality of tithes. Author, Jeff Farris writes on page 43 that:
it has been argued that since Scripture speaks of ‘tithes’ (noting the plurality of the word), that there was more than one tithe and this supports a second or third tithe. But this argument is immediately nullified once we understand that there was a tithe of produce and a tithe of livestock [not money], which can further be broken down into the various kinds of plants and animals that were tithed. Added to this is the fact that there were eleven tribes in Israel with families represented in each tribe. They all tithed. All of these can be taken together in a variety of ways and be called, ‘tithes,’ thus accounting for the plurality of the word.
This means tithes addresses the types of items given and not whether there was more than one tithe. However, I used the words first, second and third tithe to make sense of a complex tithe system. So remember, those who were not landowners in Israel did not tithe. One the reasons I spent so much of my time studying this subject is to make sure all people and the especially elderly in the church understand what the Bible says about vulnerable people. I dived into this tithing phenomenon because of things such as a 92-year-old woman being kicked out of her church for being sick and not tithing. You can’t make this stuff up. And that’s why I wrote the book, KLEPTOMANIAC: Who’s Really Robbing God Anyway? And it appears some churches may be guilty of robbing its members by abusing tithe Scriptures. The following quote from the book Iron Sharpens Iron by Michael Burman offers some insight into possibly why more than one tithe came about.
The following quote states: “The rabbis … interpreted them [spring and autumn harvests] as two different tributes: one to be given to the Levites, ‘the first tithe’, and the other to be brought to Jerusalem, ‘the second tithe’ … the implementation of these laws was almost impossible … 20 percent … was too high …” (Encyclopaedia Judaica, 1971, volume 15, “Tithing”, pages 1161–1162).
The Scribes and Pharisees had adopted numerous traditions that transgressed the original intent of the law. Christ said to the Scribes and Pharisees: “… ‘Why do you transgress the commandment of [GOD] because of your tradition?’” (Matthew 15:3).
The historian Josephus states: “Let there be taken out of your fruits a tenth, besides that which you have allotted to give to the priests and Levites … Besides those two tithes, which I have already said you are to pay every year, the one for the Levites, the other for the festivals, you are to bring every year a third tithe to be distributed to those that want …” (Josephus, Book 4, chapter 8, entry numbers 8, 22).
Although Josephus mentions a second and third tithe he was only citing the traditions of the Pharisees. Did you notice that the priests and Levites asked their local communities to pay a third tithe EVERY YEAR! The original intent of the law was that a tenth was to be taken out of a single tithe every three years, not every year. It was traditions like this that placed an enormous burden onto the shoulders of the tithepayer.
The scholarship on tithing is indisputable and yet people still refuse to accept the truth of Scripture. With this above quote, it appears that one tithe existed in Israel and that multiple tithes seem to have been an extra taxation by Rabbis later in history, which the author claims Jesus rebuked the Pharisees because of their excessive respect for the law by creating more laws and traditions that violated the original intent of the law.
Remember the tithe in Israel was based on an economic system where assets were tithed on and not Israel’s income. If you dig into the historical context of the Hebrew people, you will never see God ask for money as a tithe in Israel. He always asked the 12 tribes who farmed the land in Israel for a tithe from the increase from His miracle and not man’s effort through a wage. The word increase has never been associated with money in the Bible. God wanted a tithe from Israel’s assets, which were crops, cattle, grain, herds, flocks and all items He increased. The term increase in Scripture is yield from the field and offspring from the herds, flocks and cattle. Never assume what a tithe is until you deeply study the land, the language and the literature of the Israelite people. Knowing the truth means seeking out orthodox Hebrew to understand the nuances and the different sects of Jewish thought concerning the tithe. When you do that, you will see that tithe teachers in today’s church are far from understanding Israel’s tithe economy. Now I do have to warn you. Some Jews today are not immune to fall prey to the money tithe system. Despite the best scholarship, people still get duped by the modern interpretation of the tithe.Follow Dr. Chase On Social Media