Should the Church Teach Tithing?

OK, I find this rather humerous. I was reading my Gmail when I saw this little ad with the tagline, “Tithing Rebuttal by PH.D.” and linking to (seriously, I don’t know why I’m giving this guy free traffic!).

I guess if you put a “PH.D.” next to your name you can say that you don’t need to pay tithing…

… When they are learned they think they are wise, and they hearken not unto the counsel of God, for they set it aside, supposing they know of themselves, wherefore, their wisdom is foolishness and it profiteth them not. And they shall perish.

2 Nephi 9:28

I would love to see this guy in a debate with Dave Ramsey 😀

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14 thoughts on “Should the Church Teach Tithing?”

  1. Hi guys. No particular comment other than I likewise LOVE Dave Ramsey. I’m trying to find your contact info. Could you put emails on your “About the authors” pages?

    I just set up a blog at The More Good foundation helped me do it, it looks like they may have helped you too. I can’t figure out how to get it connected to the real world. The search engines can’t find it, and I can’t figure out how to get plugged in to other LDS sites. Any advice?

    Mike Brown

  2. I would dearly love to debate with Dave Ramsey anytime anyplace. He would lose becasue God’s Word is on my side! Randy Alcorn chickened out from a Christianity Today debate with me. Why don’t you READ my article before you start attacking me!!! I teach that those who are blessed should give more than 10% but those who are struggling should not be scared by a false presentation of Malachi 3 to starve their families and do without essentials just to pad the pockets of greedy preachers. My book is supported by many top theologians across the spectrum. Truth will win.

  3. Sorry Russell, I guess if you really believe that then I shouldn’t mock you. I’ve read the Bible so I don’t think I need to read your interpretation of the Bible. Instead I look to prophets clarification and continuted revelation, which we have in our church.

    You are right that people should not pay tithing “to pad the pockets of greedy preachers.” People should pay tithing because it is a commandment. I don’t believe that “struggling” excludes a person from any commandment.

    In our church (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) tithing is not used to pay preachers. We have no paid ministry. Tithing money is sacred and is used to build up the kingdom of God. From

    The law of tithing is how the Lord funds His Church. Today all faithful members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints contribute one tenth of their income as tithing. Tithing funds are used for:

    * Constructing temples, chapels, and other buildings.
    * Providing operating funds for the Church.
    * Funding the missionary program.
    * Preparing materials used in Church classes and organizations.
    * Temple work, family history, and many other important Church functions.
    * Education.

    Of course, Dave Ramsey is not LDS, but I have found that he teaches true principles. Truth will always be truth. I think that is attributed to his great success. His principles are not new though as he will be the first to admit (“We teach God’s and grandma’s way of handling money”). We have a pamphlet in our church entitled “One for the Money” that was adapted from a talk given by a leader in our church in 1975. It essentially teaches the same principles as those taught by Dave Ramsey.

    Also, I don’t believe that anyone should give more than 10% tithing. All the Lord requires is 10%. Instead, you should find other ways of giving such as fast offerings and other charitible donations of your choice.

    Now I don’t have a PH.D. – or any type of religious degree. But I know that what I have stated above is the Lord’s way and tithing is a true principle. How do I know. Because I have paid tithing since I was 8 years old.

    “Remember that paying tithing is not as much a matter of money as it is a matter of faith.”
    – Gordon B. Hinckley

  4. Dustin, I Would love for you to take your Bible and go to his website and read his book and prove Russell wrong on any point then post it here for all to read.

  5. Jerry, it is pointless. I don’t have the time or the desire to read his book. I’ve read the scriptures. I’ve heard the words of living prophets. Russell, while a highly educated and good man I’m sure, is not a prophet seer and revelator and as such I don’t see his interpretation of the Bible as God’s word. These are the words of the Lord on the matter:

    And this shall be the beginning of the tithing of my people.
    And after that, those who have thus been tithed shall pay one-tenth of all their interest annually; and this shall be a standing law unto them forever, for my holy priesthood, saith the Lord.

    D&C 119:3-4

    I’m sure you don’t believe in the Book of Mormon or the Doctrine and Covenants. I’m sure you don’t believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet. So really arguing this point is moot for both of us. I guess we’d just have to agree to disagree Jerry.

  6. What Kelly failed to mention was that God was trying to bring back the people of Corinth to remember their blessings and remember what had gotten them to this point through Paul. Paul’s message was about steering them back. I love Kelly’s bracketed comments ( don’t give if commanded). What Paul was saying is to give from the heart even if it was a commandment along the lines of the widows mite. The widow was blessed because she gave all, the rich man was not because he gave a portion.

  7. “In our church (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) tithing is not used to pay preachers. We have no paid ministry.”

    I find it fascinating that LDS leaders are not paid from tithes. How are they paid?

    Your list is interesting:
    1. OT tithes did NOT pay for buildings; freewill offerings did.
    2. OT tithes did NOT pay for building upkeep or daily expenses; freewill offerings did.
    3. OT tithes did NOT pay for missionaries; it was against the Law to proselytize Gentiles.
    4. OT tithes did NOT pay for education. The synagogue provided this through freewill offerings.
    5. OT salaries of Levites and priests ARE paid from tithes but you say that this is NOT what the LDS church does! I thought that prophets were supposed to AGREE with the Word, not change it.

    How can you use Corinthians to prove tithing when it does not contain the word “tithe.” OT tithes could only come from farmers and herdsmen inside Israel. The OT Hebrews absolutely were not allowed to accept tithes from Hebrews living in pagan land or from pagans. Is that true? When did it change and what texts do you have validate the change?

    1 Corinthians 9:13 fails to prove tithing because it is self-destructive by opening the door to ALL kind of Temple support –which the Church does not copy.

    Don’t fret about not wanting to debate me. Nobody else will either.

  8. Russell,

    You sound very well versed in the Bible. I would offer a challenged to read the Book of Mormon and take Moroni’s invitation (Moroni was the last prophet to write in the Book of Mormon) to read, ponder, and pray and ask God if the Book of Mormon is true:

    3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.
    4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
    5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

    Moroni 10:3-5

    I’m sure if you would do this, you too would know that the Book of Mormon was also written by prophets of God – just as the Bible was. You would then come to know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God because he was called of God to translate and bring forth this book. Then you would know that the teachings of Joseph Smith came from God. You would know, as I know, that Jesus Christ is the head of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and that it is his only true and living church on the face of the Earth today. They you would know that He continues to call prophets today. You would know that Thomas S. Monson is the prophet in our day. You would know his teachings concerning tithing are true. You would begin to pay tithing and rejoice in the blessings of having the windows of heaven opened to you so that God could poor out blessings that there would not be room enough to receive. Then there would be nothing to debate about.

  9. Everything we need to know in order to be saved is found in the Bible. First Corinthians 13:8-13 tells me that the gift of prophecy was a partial gift and would fail. I do not bellieve it is found in the church after the Bible became available to all mankind.

    Instead of discussing what the Bible says word-for-word you dismiss my conclusions because your modern prophet disagrees. You have put aside the Word of God and have leaned instead to another false gospel.

  10. Russell, not my modern prophet, God’s modern prophet.

    I didn’t think you would take my challenge. Why? Again, I point to the scripture in my original post. You’ve become to prideful to even consider you might be wrong. The Book of Mormon also prophesies of you:

    2 Nephi 29

    Please, humble yourself, take my challenge. What if it’s true?

  11. Tell me when Nephi was written. Wasn’t it around the 8th or 9th century suppossedly? Tell me why it reads like 1611 KJV Englsih? What is the oldest original?

    And I hve red a lodt of that garbage about 20 years ago when I was exploringk different religions.

  12. The book of Nephi was written between ~ 600 BC – 550 BC. I don’t know where you got the 8th or 9th century. It was translated into English between 1827 – 1829.

    It’s interesting you can so easily dismiss it as garbage when you know nothing about it.

    Go ahead, read it. Pray and ask God if its true. Then, let’s talk.

  13. Hey dustin, I’m 17 years old and i was preparing a talk for sacrament meeting tomorrow on tithing when i came across this. I want to thank you for your faith that you show to this PHD. Even though he doesn’t believe in continued revelation, your testimony you bore has strengthened mine. I know if he would humble himself and take moroni’s challenge that his heart would soften and that he’d stop finding every single reason not to believe. I know because heavenly father has given me a testimony of our prophets when me (in my teenager-like nature) was trying to find every single reason not to believe. I know heavenly father blesses me with happiness and more blessings than i can even tell when i pay my tithing. And no phd contending about ”it sounds like he’s talking in 17th century english” can prove my testimony wrong. Thank you dustin. :]

  14. Sorry folks,

    If something weren’t true, when would you want to know. Ramsey is not the truth. He doesn’t really understand financial principles and how money really works. He prays on people of any christian faith. People I know who have used his principles end up with little or no money, no access to the value of their house in the case of a job loss, and usually no substantial retimerment. His theories are linear and do not take into account the eroding factors on money. He is good at helping people create and stay on a budget, but just becaue he is an entertainer and an author does not give him financial expertise. He isn’t even licensed or credentialed as a financial planner, advisor or broker and is not licensed in, nor really knows how insurance really works. Term insurance is the most expensive, cause you pay all that premium and end up with nothing and it ends before your life does. RAMSEY DOESN’T REALLY KNOW as much as you all give him creidt for. All the people who drank the original koolaid (jim jones style) perished and lost their lives, followers of ramsey will have their financial lives perish as well.

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