Tithing, Fear, and Rewards

Posted: July 8, 2022 in Uncategorized

A young father stood in court in front of the judge and faced a decision of paying child support or the fear of spending time in jail. He chose child support once under the pressure of the judge. Was this particular man truly given freedom in the court room to choose love for his family? Many people can agree that an earthly dad’s love to support his family financially is healthy. Another question might be, “Does true love make decisions based on fear or rewards?

A woman without children stood in court and asked for a financial reward for investing her time and money in her ex husband’s business. The jury decided she should be rewarded 50% of the money of the ex husband’s future earnings. When asked why she invested financially in her husband, she admitted that she knew it would pay off in the future in court. Was this particular woman loving this man or his future earnings? Many people can agree that a wife’s sacrificial love can support her husband even when there is no reward of money.

In these stories there are two sides of the pendulum. One side is fear, where the judicial law says there is punishment (curse) for not giving. The other side is reward, where the judicial law says there is a future reward (blessing) for giving. In the new covenant we find the old covenant law motivated by fear and reward completely fulfilled by Jesus and only love in the middle of the pendulum. The Bible defines no greater love as laying down one’s life for another (John 15 ). “Well hang on Brandon, if you take away fear in the church for giving and you take away reward in the church for giving, then no one will give”. To that question I would respond, “You are right, without the motivation of fear or motivation of reward, no one would be generous to the church without a motivation of love.”

In 1 John 4, we find that perfect love (Jesus) casts out fear, because fear has to do with judgement. Why would Jesus take away the curse/ fear when it comes to our financial giving to the church? Is it possible that He trusts the love He placed inside of you to be motivated without fear?

Our Heavenly Father takes care of our need according to His riches in Christ Jesus because we are sons and daughters (Philippians 4:19). If we give to the church thinking we can purchase a reward from Him then we have missed His heart of love to provide for us. Do you remember the older brother in the parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:28). The older son was giving his time to the father’s field expecting a reward that was always there for him the whole time (Ephesians 1:3). Christians looking for a future reward for giving to the church are often not content with the reward only being the church is blessed.

Let’s look at what Jesus did for us and why? Jesus freely gave His all and laid His life down for us on the cross. He didn’t do it from a place of fear of God but a place of freedom and love from His Father to us. Jesus didn’t love the church for financial gain, He actually drove out men in the temple who used it for financial gain and placed fear on the people. Love is generous, period.

1 Timothy 6:3-6 NKJ If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, ………who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself.

Galatians 2:19-20 NKJ 19 For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

Check out this video for more on this subject or visit http://www.graceforeternity.com

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