ROBBERY IN THE CHURCH; THE TITHE
In the book of Malachi, we understand that God complained that the priests had robbed him by offering polluted bread on his altar and withholding the tithes and offerings from him. (Malachi 1:7-14). However, on a broader scale, the entire nation had robbed God and not just the priests: “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, EVEN THIS WHOLE NATION. (Malachi 3:8-9). The entire nation had robbed God in tithes and offerings because they did not supply the priests with the quality offerings for the priests in turn to offer their tithe to God. Sequentially thus, the entire nation robbed God of his wage and due; the tithe. God gave them spiritual blessings but they did not reciprocate by giving God his material requirements for there to be meat in his house.
This is the principle of robbery in the house of God. Paul, an ardent student of the word, and writer of the mysteries of God, was inspired and informed by this Old Testament principle when he said, “I robbed other churches, taking wages of them, to do you service. And when I was present with you, and wanted, I was chargeable to no man: for that which was lacking to me the brethren which came from Macedonia supplied: and in all things I have kept myself from being burdensome unto you, and so will I keep myself.” (2 Corinthians 11:8-9).
Without doubt, a wage is not an offering. In church, anyone could decide to give an offering, and this is not called a wage. The moment the word “wage” is used, it means we are operating in the dimension of requirements. Biblically, the tithe is a requirement for God’s children. This is what Paul calls a wage.
Previously, we have learnt that every labourer in God’s house is worthy of his hire. It is the right of every Pastor to reap the material things of his flock after he has ministered spiritual things to them. However, in 1 Corinthians 11:8-9, Paul confessed that he had robbed other churches by taking wages of them to do service to the Corinthians. Why did Paul consider taking wages from other churches a robbery? This is because he demanded wages of them when he had not ministered spiritual things to them.
Yet, on the contrary, it is theft on the part of the church not to supply material things to their Pastors and labourers after these ministers have attended to them spiritually.
A church’s blessings in financial and numerical multiplication will be hindered when they rob their ministers and ultimately, God. I can attest to the fact that our church saw a multiplied rate of growth in all aspects when I taught on this principle of robbery.
Your tithe belongs to the place where you receive your spiritual nourishment. It is permitted to give an offering in any place. But the tithe must go to the place where you are fed spiritually and made self-sufficient. Staying in the Word always yields divine dividends. Remain blessed!