Tithing: A "Generosity" Analogy

Last time I talked about how in the O.T. God sets a standard of giving 10% of our income back to Him, then in the N.T. sets the standard of “generosity.” And I asked the question whether there’s any way after years of God requiring a minimum of 10%, and then giving us Jesus, and then saying, “Okay, now be generous” that anyone could seriously take that to mean anything less than 10%. Here’s an analogy I heard once from one of my favorite Bible teachers (Bob Russell):

Let’s say you have a child and hire a babysitter. You ask her how much she charges and she tells you $20 for the night. For several years you use her every week, always paying $20. Then you have your second child. The first time you have her babysit your two children you ask her, “How much do we pay you, now that we have two kids?” She replies, “You know what, we’ve gotten to know each other, we have a relationship, I trust you. So I’ll leave it up to you, just be generous.” Would the thought even occur to you to give her LESS than $20? Of course not. You’d say, “Well, we have an EXTRA reason to pay now. Obviously we need to give MORE than $20. The question is, how much more than $20?”

In the same way, when God’s people, who had been commanded by God to give a minimum of 10% forever were told to be “generous” after God gave them Jesus, do you think any of them thought, even for a second, “Maybe we can give less now?” Of course not. They just had to figure out how much MORE than 10% might constitute generosity for them.

And so when people say, “Don’t teach tithing, now it’s about generosity,” I agree. As long as you believe that generosity begins somewhere ABOVE ten percent. If you think that being “generous” means giving less than 10%, you have got to be kidding me! And your twisted theology is very convenient. (I don’t mean to be rude, but I jus gots to keep it real.)