Last week I wrote a post called A New Addition – where I recounted a recent sermon I heard about the requirement of tithing.
Tuesday I was able to sit down with the speaker of that message for lunch. We were able to discuss what took place, and how I felt about it. I am not going to share with you everything said, but I will give you an idea of what occurred.
He asked me what I thought about the past two Sundays (the Sunday I wrote about, and the last Sunday – a similar topic was preached). I answered by saying, “Actually I need to talk to you about that. Do you want me to remove myself from my teaching position in Sunday School?” (You see, during his two messages he pretty much said that if you were in a ‘leadership’ position – which in his eyes includes me – than you either needed to repent and start tithing or you needed to remove yourself from that position).
He asked, “Why?”
I said, “Well I don’t tithe.”
He said, “Well, you should tithe then.”
I said, “I’m not going to.”
He said, “Why not?”
I said, “I do not see that it is taught in scripture…”
And the conversation went on from there.
He brought up the “store house,” the “first fruits,” etc. I brought up pretty much everything I have discussed here and maybe a little more. I will not bore you with repeating myself.
What I found interesting was his idea that if you use the building (which I do to help teach and to meet with others) than you should help pay for that building. In a way, I agree with that idea. I recommended that a better solution though would be to charge admission. He didn’t like that idea.
What I found VERY interesting was the dilemma he was in. You see, he wants a teacher for the Sunday School that I teach. But I know he does not trust anyone else to teach it. The dilemma of course was, go against his “conviction” and allow me to continue to teach OR remove me and be out a teacher. I urged him, more than once, that he should not go against his conviction and that I would have no hurt feelings in any way. But as it stands, I am still the teacher of this particular Sunday School class. Which is only like 3-5 people on an average Sunday morning…
Anyways, the best part of the meeting was that through this discussion it opened a door for us to meet again next week, to specifically talk about these issues. He kept telling me that I have given him “a lot to think about.” I do not know if that is good or bad, but either next week he will come guns-a-blazing or he will be where he is or he will have changed his position. Regardless, I look forward to discussing this with him further and I wonder what he is going to speak about this coming Sunday.
P.S. When we first started talking about this he said, “You don’t believe in supporting the Church?” I replied, “Absolutely, of course I believe in supporting the church.” His reasoning then became, “Well the church wants to meet in this building, so you should help support that by helping pay for the building.” I hope next week the church decides to meet in the Caribbean, I’ll be voting for that at the next “business meeting.”
P.P.S. He also asked me if I thought pastors should get paid. I said no. He said that I would feel differently when I was in the ministry. I didn’t get into it with him over his vocabulary (I have in the past) but I assured him that I would not.