PRINCIPLES OF KINGDOM LIVING
THE MINISTRY OF GIVING—STEWARDSHIP OF CHRISTIAN LIVING
Stewardship is the practice of systematic and proportionate giving of time, abilities, and material possessions based on the conviction that these are a trust from God to be used in His service for the benefit of His Kingdom. It is a divine-human partnership, with God the senior partner. It is a way of living; the recognition of God’s ownership of one’s person, one’s powers, and one’s possessions and the faithful use of these for the advancement of Christ’s Kingdom in this world.
(1) There is a difference between ownership and stewardship:
A. Ownership – God is the owner of all things, (Genesis 14:19,22); (Psalms 24:1);
(50:1-12); (68:19); (89:11); (Haggai 2:8).
B. Stewardship – We are not owners; we are but stewards, responsible and
accountable. (Matthew 25:14-30); (Luke 19:11-26).
(2) The different owner – steward relationships: A. Life – What you have received. (Genesis 1:27-28); (Acts 17:25); (James 1:17).
B. Time – What you are allotted. (Proverbs 24:30-34); (Psalms 90:12).
C. Talents – What you have been given to use. (Matthew 25:14-30).
D. Possessions – What is entrusted to you. (Matthew 6:19-21); (Colossians 3:1-2).
E. Finances – What you labor for. (I Corinthians 16:1-2).
(3) What are the requirements of a good steward? A. Faithfulness. (I Corinthians 4:1-2). B. Teachable. (Psalms 27:11). C. Desire to minister (serve) to people. (Romans 12:10-13). D. Servant’s heart. (Galatians 5:13). E. Willingness to give. (Luke 6:38).
1. WHAT IS A TITHE? A tithe is the tenth of our income which belongs to God. The word “tithe” means tenth”. “Bring ye ALL the tithes into the STOREHOUSE, that there may be meat in Mine house, and PROVE Me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10).
2. WHY MUST WE GIVE GOD A TENTH OF OUR INCOME?
A. God COMMANDS us to tithe. As we are obedient to the Lord in tithing, we
are establishing His Lordship in our lives.
“Will a man ROB God? Yet ye have robbed Me. But ye say, Wherein have we
robbed Thee? IN TITHES AND OFFERINGS. Ye are cursed with a curse: for
YE HAVE ROBBED ME, even this whole nation.” (Malachi 3:8-9).
“Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall
inherit the Kingdom of God.” (I Corinthians 6:10).
B. Tithing is WORSHIP. God owns all things. Everything we have comes from Him
so in tithing, we are giving part of Himself back to God.
“For every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. I
know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are Mine. If
I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for THE WORLD IS MINE, and the fulness thereof.” (Psalms 50:10-12).
“Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.” (II Corinthians 9:7).
C. Tithing develops us as STEWARDS. We learn faithfulness in caring for God’s
“There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more
than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. THE LIBERAL SOUL SHALL BE MADE
FAT: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself. He that withholdeth
corn, the people shall curse him: but blessing shall be upon the head of him
that selleth it.” (Proverbs 11:24-26).
BIBLE NARRATIVES: The parable of the pounds. (Luke 19:11-27).
The rich fool. (Luke 12:16-20)
3. WHERE DO WE BRING OUR TITHE?
Under the Old Covenant, the people brought their tithes and offerings to the
“storehouse,” the local place designated by the Lord and His ministers to keep and
disburse the people’s substance. Under the New Covenant, we are to bring our
tithes and offerings to the local Church, God’s storehouse, the place from which we
receive our spiritual food.
“Bring ye ALL the tithes into the STOREHOUSE, that there may be meat in Mine
house, and prove Me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10).
“Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. UPON THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK (Sunday), let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.” (I Corinthians 16:1-2)
(4) Why do we bring our tithe to the local church?
Our tithes support the ministry and functions of the Local Church. In a small local
assembly, the tithe could perhaps support only one minister, the Pastor. As a
congregation grows, other ministers (teaching, music, administrative) will be needed.
“…that there may be meat in my house.” (Malachi 3:10).
“Even so hath the Lord ordained that THEY WHICH PREACH THE GOSPEL SHOULD LIVE OFF THE GOSPEL.” (I Corinthians 9:14).
“And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give; for
THE LABOURER IS WORTHY OF HIS HIRE. Go not from house to house.”
BIBLE NARRATIVES: Abraham paid tithes to Melchizedek. (Genesis 14:18-20);
(5) It is the Lord himself who set apart the ministry as a gift to the people. They are
set apart for service and from outside pressures. (Numbers 18:1-7); (Numbers 3:610);
(Deuteronomy 10:8-9); (Deuteronomy 18:4-5). Therefore, the Lord said in (Deuteronomy 25:4): “You shall not muzzle the ox while he is threshing.” This has
significance as we see it quoted in the New Testament. (I Corinthians 9:3-14), the established teaching of the Old Testament is now confirmed by Paul in this passage that “those who proclaim the gospel get their living from the gospel.” Jesus taught this in (Matthew 10:10); & (Luke 10:7).
(I Timothy 5:17-18) – Barclay’s translation of (v. 17) accurately reflects the Greek meaning of “double honor”. He writes: “Elders who exercise an efficient leadership should be reckoned as worthy of double pay, especially those strenuously engaged in preaching and teaching”.
In order then, to release the pastor from outside pressures and release him totally to the Lord’s work, all of his needs should be supplied through the tithe. Out of the tithe, he might set the standard of double the average salary in his congregation. This would need to be tempered with Wisdom and spiritual self-control.
(6) The tithe then that is designated by God for the pastor and his staff is to go
into the store house (II Chronicles 31:11-12); (Malachi 3:6-12). The storehouse was a portion of the local house of God where the tithe from the land was held in store for the ministry. (Nehemiah 10:37-39); (12:44-47).
(7) Are we not free from the tithe, as it was under the law? No. Hundreds of years before the law, Abraham paid tithes to Melchizedek the great King-Priest of God. Jacob, who was penniless at the time of his vow, promised tithes to the Lord. God’s views on the tithe have never changed.
“And blessed be the Most High God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.” (Genesis 14:20).
“And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God’s house: and of all that Thou shalt give me I will surely give THE TENTH (tithe) unto Thee.” (Genesis 28:22).
“For I am the Lord, I change not…will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed Me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed Thee? In tithes and offerings.” (Malachi 3:6,8).
(8) Why is the New Testament almost silent on the subject of tithing?
The New Testament speaks more on things that are changed in the New Covenant relationship in contrast to the Old Covenant relationship. For example: The sacrifice for sin. Under the Old Covenant, the sacrifice was an animal. In the New Covenant Jesus is our sacrifice. Also, under the Old Covenant, the Tabernacle and the Temple were the dwelling places of God. In the New Covenant, God lives in His people.
Jesus Christ had nothing to add to the principle of the tithe except the spiritual motive of love to God and love to man, without which, giving is meaningless.
(9) What does the New Testament teach about tithing? A. Jesus taught the tithe should not be neglected. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For YE PAY TITHE of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: THESE OUGHT YE TO HAVE DONE, and not to leave the other undone.” (Matthew 23:23). B. The tithe is an eternal principle of God. ABRAHAM paid tithes to MELCHISEDEC BEFORE the Old Covenant was ratified. We are the children of Abraham by faith in Christ. JESUS CHRIST is a High Priest FOREVER after the order of Melchizedek. So, as it was right for Abraham to pay tithes to Melchizedek, so IT IS RIGHT FOR US TO PAY TITHES TO JESUS CHRIST. “To whom (Melchizedek) also Abraham gave A TENTH PART OF ALL…” (Hebrews 7:2).
“For He testifieth, Thou (Christ) art a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 7:17).
(10) Are we required to give offerings as well to the Lord? Yes. We are required to give offerings for the needs of the Church. “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed Me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed Thee? In tithes and OFFERINGS.” (Malachi 3:8).
Distributing to the necessity of the saints…(Romans 12:13).
(11) Since the tithe goes for the ministry (the pastor and eventual staff) then offerings are to be given for the operational expenses of the church. Offerings are a vital and necessary principle in God’s stewardship plan. (Deuteronomy 12:6,11); (Malachi 3:8); (II Corinthians 8 and 9).
Offerings in the Bible were given for missionary support, building projects and various free-will offerings. For example, all recorded instances in the Bible show that offerings were raised to build the Tabernacle of Moses, the Temple of Solomon and the Temple after the captivity.
(12) When a person tithes, what are some of the blessings he can expect from God? A. Tithing is God’s way of growing men. A man receives stature entering into a business agreement with God.
B. We receive peace of mind by our obedience.
C. Tithing demonstrates our faith in God’s power to supply all of our needs.
D. The act of faith in tithing blesses the money that is left, because God is honored. It
also puts us in the right relationship with God even when we are in need of a job or
financial help. We can come to God in prayer, knowing we have been obedient.
E. It blesses the individual tither because it gives him a part in God’s infinite program.
F. It blesses the Church by enabling it to carry out a greater ministry.
G. Through our obedience, we become good examples of financial stewardship in
(13) After we have given our tithe, can we designate (tell where to spend) where it should
No. Once the tither pays his tithe, it belongs to the Lord. No one has a right to dictate to the one receiving the tithe how it shall be used. We may DESIGNATE OUR OFFERINGS BUT NOT THE TITHE. The tithe is to be received by the Pastor (Bishop Overseer). He is to provide for himself and his family’s needs, AND THE NEEDS OF ADDITIONAL MINISTRY FOR THE CHURCH.
“And behold, I have given THE CHILDREN OF LEVI (the ministers) all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation…But the Levites shall do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a stature for ever throughout your generation, that among the children of Israel they have no inheritance.” (Numbers 18:21,23).
“Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treadeth out the corn.” (Deuteronomy 25:4).
BIBLE NARRATIVE: Abraham pays tithes to a man, Melchizedek. (Genesis 14:18-20). Israel paid tithes to the priests (ministers). If they misused it, they had to answer to God. (Numbers 18:20-21,23). The early Church brought their money and laid it at the Apostles’ (leaders) feet.
(14) Is it scriptural to give only when “we feel led” or by impulse? No. God has ordained that we are to give SYSTEMATICALLY:
A. We are to give on the first day of the week (Sunday).
“UPON THE FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.”
(I Corinthians 16:2).
B. Our tithes and our offerings should be large or small based on the way God
has prospered us. “Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store AS GOD HATH PROSPERED HIM, that there be no gatherings when I come.” (I Corinthians 16:2).
(15) WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT SCRIPTURAL WAYS OF GIVING? A. Tithes – that portion given to God into the storehouse (the local assembly). B. Offerings – that which is given to support other ministries. C. Alms – that which is given as a gift to an individual.
(16) WHAT ATTITUDES ARE TO BE PRESENT IN THE HEARTS OF THOSE WHO GIVE UNTO GOD?
A. Give “willingly” (II Corinthians 8:3,12).
B. Give “cheerfully” (II Corinthians 9:7).
C. Give “lovingly” (II Corinthians 8:24).
D. Give “thankfully” (II Corinthians 9:11-12).
E. Give with “pure” motives (Matthews 6:24).
(17) WHAT PRINCIPLES ARE WE TO FOLLOW IN GIVING?
A. First, we are to give of ourselves to the Lord (II Corinthians 8:5).
B. According to our ability (Acts 11:29); (II Corinthians 8:12).
C. Give regularly (I Corinthians 16:1-2).
D. Give systematically (II Corinthians 9:7).
E. Give as a ministry to the Lord and His saints (II Corinthians 9:12-13).
F. Give as unto the Lord and not to be noticed by men (Matthews 6:2-4).
There is a principle of blessing in that God desires that we might give in order to release the blessing of God upon us. Our attitude always affects the situation we are involved in, so we must be ever mindful to give out of a cheerful and willing heart. God desires us to give in a manner that will bring glory to Him.
1. What is a tithe?
2. Why must we give God a tenth of our income?
3. Where do we bring our tithe?
4. Are we free from the tithe today?
5. What are the promises of obvious blessing that should be expected by the person who tithes?
PRINCIPLES OF KINGDOM LIVING
LESSON 6—STUDY SHEET
THE MINISTRY OF GIVING—STEWARDSHIP OF CHRISTIAN LIVING
Please fill this sheet out and return to me the next class.
1. ____________________ is the practice of systematic and proportionate giving of time, abilities, and material possessions based on the conviction that these are a trust from God to be used in His service for the ____________________ of His Kingdom.
2. The word tithe means _________________.
3. Malachi 3:8-9 “Will a man ________ God? Yet ye have ____________ Me. But ye say,
Wherein have we ______________ Thee? In _________________ and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have _________________- Me, even this whole nation.
4. Everything we have is God’s. Everything is given to us by God. We own nothing.
The tithe belongs to God. A minister once presented a very good question:
He said If I gave you something to keep for me for a season, would you own it?
If I came to you and said, “Here, would you please keep this money for me for a while? I will be back and get it later.” Then a month later, I come to you and tell you, “You know, I want you to keep 90% of the money I gave you and this is what you are to do with it. I want you to pay your rent, car payment and so on…but I want you to give me the other 10% back.”
Question: Is the 10% your gift to me, or is the 90% my gift to you?
When we give God the tithe, are we giving a gift or are we giving what he already owns?
Is the 90% ours, or is it a gift from our loving Father to us?
Do we really believe God owns us and all that is ever in our hands?
5. Tithing develops us as _________________. We learn faithfulness in caring for God’s possessions.
6. I Corinthians 9:14 “Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the
Gospel should _____________________ off the Gospel”
7. Matthew 23:23 “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, Hypocrites! For ye pay
tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law,
judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other ___________________.”
The Lord Jesus spoke the above scripture. He spoke of the heart attitudes of the
Pharisees. He said you tithe. But you have no heart for judgment or mercy. You should have and do both. He never said to stop tithing. Tithing still stands as a command of the Lord, but it should be birthed out of our relationship with our heavenly Father and out of a heart of gratefulness for He has poured out so much to us. Never the less, it is a command and scripture teaches us if we love Him we will
keep His commands.
8. Tithing _____________________ our faith in God’s power to supply all of our
9. Numbers 18:21-23 “And behold, I have given the children of Levi (the ministers) all the
__________- in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation…But the Levites shall do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a stature for ever throughout your generations, that among the children of Israel they have no inheritance.
10. What principles are we to follow in giving? List the six that are in section 17. A.____________________________________________________________________ B.____________________________________________________________________ C.____________________________________________________________________ D.____________________________________________________________________ E.____________________________________________________________________ F.____________________________________________________________________
11. There is a principle of _________________ in that God desires that we might give in order to release the ____________ of God upon us. Our ________________________ always affects the situation we are involved in, so we must be ever mindful to give ours of a cheerful and willing heart. God desires us to give in a manner that will bring __________________.