The ten percent formula for giving invites us to keep 90% of our income and give the remaining 10% to support the church in fulfilling God’s mission (which is called tithing). The following are some good reasons to give ten percent of our annual income to God:
- SPIRITUAL GROWTH Often the first result of tithing is the effect on the giver. Helping the church serve the world with a generous and unconditional heart brings the giver deeper into a relationship with God, because that is how God responds to us.
- ANTIDOTE TO MATERIALISM In today’s affluent society, we celebrate those who accumulate great wealth and material possessions as successful people. But this success is ultimately empty and spiritually unrewarding. Tithing helps control two powerful desires in our lives: to consume and to accumulate.
- PUTTING GOD FIRST Tithing helps us to focus on who is first in our lives—God—because it requires us to think about
and plan how we will dispense the gifts that God has entrusted to us.
- MANAGERS, NOT OWNERS Jesus went beyond the
Old Testament notion of the tithe. He saw all earthly goods—money, property, even life—as gifts from God. We are not owners; we are managers, asked to manage what we have in light of God’s will.
- HEALING Tithing is ultimately a healing influence on the human soul because it nurtures the fruits of the spirit—love, joy, and peace. Why? Generous and unconditional giving brings us back into focus as givers instead of receivers. Jesus put it simply. It is more blessed to give than to receive.
- LOVING OTHERS When we tithe, we help fulfill the Jesus’ greatest commandment: to love and care for your neighbor as you would love and care for yourself. We tithe for the sake of the world; we tithe for the millions of people who do not have the good news of the gospel or the basic necessities of life.