Aspects of the Covenant Part 2

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Aspects of the Covenant Part 2

The Purpose of Giving

Nehemiah noted how they made ordinances to charge themselves on a yearly basis with a third part of a shekel for the service of the house of the Lord (Neh. 10:32). The contribution that the government committed the nation to was for the need of the temple. The tribute money each Israelite would give was to keep the Temple functioning.

The tribute money each Israelite would give was to keep the Temple functioning.

The Târumah Offering Principle No. 159

It takes money to keep a church functioning. If we want buildings, ministers, missions, and Sunday services, then we need money to fund this. There is rent, staff salary, utilities, transportation, and the like. No one will give these out for free just because you say it’s the church. The people of God need to fund the work of God. How else will it work? Of course, here’s the clincher, the Lord causes these people to prosper so that they can give a portion of their increase for His work.

The people gave in order for the Temple to facilitate ministry and worship may continue. Without their giving, the temple would not function as it should. It’s the same story for a lot of small churches in America. Believers are refusing to support the ministry, and the ministry is unable to continue. As a result, there is a higher cost than the money they should have given. It’s a lack of spiritual growth and guidance. It may not be worth that much right now to some people, but in light of eternity, it’ll be one’s most precious commodity.

When we give our tithes and offering unto the Lord, the church can carry out the work He has given us. Why would God need us to bring in these offerings anyway? It’s not like God needs our money. Let’s face it. He doesn’t. Again, He just wants us to feel like we are a part of His work.

The tithes support church ministry, and other ministries the community collectively support. We do so that we can have a place of worship, and so others can have the opportunity to hear about Jesus. This purpose is the only reason why we are here on earth.

The tithes support church ministry, and other ministries the community collectively support.

The “half-shekel of the sanctuary” being only payable on the rare, and forbidden occasion of a census of the whole people (Exo. 30:13–16) is not used for the ordinary support of the temple service. However, it was calculated to suggest to thoughtful minds the need of some regular funds, and the persons who are obliged to bring it to the Temple. Usually, as an independent nation, there was no difficulty creating provision for the temple, as the kings easily provided for the work of the Lord. The current circumstance is different. The “governor” was not like a king. He was responsible, replaceable, and bound to remit the great bulk of the taxes to the court.

Under these conditions, and probably in relation to an urgent requirement, the idea arose of a special (voluntary) tax, to be paid annually by all adult males, for the support of the service, the continual provision of the morning and evening sacrifice, the increase, the shew-bread, the red heifers, the scapegoat, and the numerous meat and drink offerings required on various occasions, and especially at each of the great festivals. The giving was mandatory because of two things 1) the uniformity of the tax, and 2) the condition that it must be paid by all adult males. With regard to its proper amount, that had to be fixed by a consideration of existing needs in comparison with existing means. A third part of a shekel was required, and it must be brought in at a specific time; but it was not a long time for the third part, the half-shekel to be substituted. It was considered ample provision made for the maintenance of the established rites in full completeness and efficiency (cf. Mt. 17:24–27).



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