The Instigator
Apolitical
Pro (for)
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The Contender
DanielPrev
Con (against)
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Tithing is a scam to fleece Christians and should be abolished

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/1/2018 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 672 times Debate No: 112141
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
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Apolitical

Pro

I have never really liked the concept of the church telling people that they need to give their money to the church. It always just struck me the wrong way growing up. After doing some research into the biblical support for tithing I have discovered that any church that preaches this method of required giving is either ignorant or intentionally obfuscating to rob people. I tend to lean towards ignorant for most proponets since it has been church dogma since the birth of the Catholic church.

Either way this tradition needs to be eradicated and exposed for its ignorance or disgraceful attempt to line church pockets. Whichever applies to those who advocate it
DanielPrev

Con

Hello, I am glad that I can have the chance to debate with you. I am a Christian myself, and my dad is the trustee/treasurer of the church, so I know quite a bit about tithing. I hope to have quite the debate with you!

Response to tithing being a dogma:

Tithing is not a dogma, as it is commanded in the Old Testament. I do not understand why the Old Testament is not good enough for a lot of Christians, as Jesus never said forget what was said in the Old, but only a few concepts were a;tered. However, tithing is mentioned in the New Testament, for example:

Mark 12: 41-44:

41 And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much.

42 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing.

43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury:

44 For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

This clearly shows that Jesus is "praising" the woman for her kind act.

Jesus also says numerous times that He doesn't come to destroy the Old law, but to fulfill it.

My opinion:

I completely understand where you and a lot of Christians are coming from, as all the scam artists these days love to rob people of their money. I totally do not agree with a lot of things that goes on in other churches, as sometimes you can search on YouTube and see all these "pastors" preaching their entire sermon on money and how everyone should give so much money to the church. I totally do not agree with this as because some people do not have anything to give in the first place. Also, how could you base an entire sermon on money? That is just wrong.

Also, I hate it when preachers call people to give moeny for an alter call or to be prayed upon. That is totally incorrect. How could you abuse your position in the church to make money. I know God does not need money to conduct divine healing, as divine healing was already accomplished at Calvary, and God does not need your money to save a soul. The money is just going to their own pockets.

In the end, however, tithing is necessary for the church today. Without money, a church is not able to operate in today's society. Also, most pastors do not have any other job than to fulfill God's calling, therefore they need income. Part of the tithes go to the Pastor's income, while the rest should go to taxes, management of the church, and to charities.

Forgive me for taking quite a bit of time to answer, as I was quite preoccupied. Good luck!



Debate Round No. 1
Apolitical

Pro

Thank you for accepting I appreciate it! I was worried it was going to expire but I am glad you responded.

Here is the problem with your first line of reasoning; He did not say to forget what was in the Old but he did say he fulfilled the old law meaning it is no longer needed. That is why there is an old covenant and a new. I will give you a couple verses to make this concrete.

Hebrews 8:7-8
For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no occasion to look for a second. For he finds fault with them when he says: "Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will establish a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah,
Hebrews 8:13
In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.
2 Corinthians 3:6
Who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
Galatians 23-26
Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. 24 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, 26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
Romans 7:6
But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.

Christians are not under the old law. That law was as Jesus said, "fulfilled." There is a new covenant. Tithing is the old law and is only valid for those living under the old law. It is a real tricky thing to advocate for some old law and not for all of it. Gets pretty subjective and requires a lot of interpretation that just is not in the text.

As for the verses from Mark, these were given as offerings not as tithes. I am sure you are well aware that tithes were never meant to be money even in the Old Testament. The tithe was always and has forever been a giving of ten percent of crops or livestock. No, this does not translate to money today. Money was everywhere in those days. The pharisees were said to be quite wealthy and greedy in the New Testament and even they did not tithe money.

Matthew 23:23
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness.

These were wealthy individuals who had plenty of money to tithe and yet they tithed spices from their small personal gardens. Why? It is because the tithe was set up to provide food as an inheritance for the Levites who were not given any land as an inheritance. Even in the often quoted Malachi 3:8-10 which talks about robbing God, the idea is that by not tithing they were robbing them of something to eat. Not money. Never money. In a time where money was used frequently.

Giving is certainly praised in the New Testament but it is not required. And a tithe is certainly not required. Not once does Jesus preach that his followers need to give him a tithe. Nor does Paul or any of the Apostles.

We both can agree that preachers who constantly harp on money are despicable and at the same time agree that it is not wrong to accept gifts freely given. After all, God loves a cheerful giver. Not one forced by compulsion. I do not feel that it is necessary for them to teach this old law concept that they warp in order to get money from their members. If their churches can't survive without misusing the Bible to force their congregation to pay for the chapel and their salaries perhaps they shouldn't exist in the first place.
DanielPrev

Con

I am terribly sorry for allowing the time to run out again. This week has just been crazy.

Response to Jesus and the Old Covenant:

You are correct that Jesus came to fulfill the Old Law, as He had said, but He did not come to destroy it.


Matthew 5:17:

Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.

According to Oxford, the definition of fulfill is to: bring to completion. Again, Jesus "brought Moses law to completion", but that does not mean He cut it off. Jesus never said anything about not tithing, however.


The beginning of Tithing
Tithing is first mentioned in the Bible in Genesis 14, when Abraham gives Melchisidek, who we know is God behind skins, a tithe.


Genesis 14: 18-20:
18 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God.

19 And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth:

20 And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.


So we know that tithing was first an act of the Gentiles, not the Jews. Abraham was a Gentile, not a Jew. The Jews originated from the twelve tribes of Israel, while the Gentiles are those who are NOT a Jew (if you are not a Jew, you are a Gentile. If you are a mix between Jew and Gentile, those were called Samaritians, but technically you are a Gentile, as the blood is still mixed).

In Hebrews 7, we learn that Abraham gave a tenth of all to Melchisidek:

Hebrews 7:1-2

1 For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him;

2 To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace;

After Abraham tithed Melchisidek, the Bible says that Abraham was blessed, the same way that people today who gives tithes are blessed.


Response to Tithing being Mandatory

I understand that you say that tithing is not mandatory. In a sense, you are correct. No one is forced to pay tithes.


A true Christian, however, would give tithes to their church, as obedience is better than sacrifice.

Without tithes, how will churches operate? If they have no money to pay for anything, how shall they operate?

There were no scriptures to tell Abraham and Jacob to tithe, so why must there be scriptures straight from Jesus to justify tithing? I do not understand how you can call your self Chrstian and only believe the New Testament. The entire Bible agrees with itself. A true Christian would believe the WHOLE thing.


Closing Remarks

Tithing should come from the heart. God gives people that desire to serve Him. I understand that some churches are a bunch a scams and take money for themself. I agree with you that preachers who keep on urging their congregations to tithe and base their entire ministry on money aren't true ministers of the gospel. I suggest that you find a church that is honest and genuine (including the Pastor) to attend. Then, you will be sure that your money will be going towards the correct place.




Debate Round No. 2
Apolitical

Pro

Hey no worries. Life is busy. I was just worried time would run out completely.

To your first assertion that the old law is not cut off. That is not the right terminology. It is not cut off. It is completed as you said. The first covenant is completed and the second has taken its place. Did you read any of the verses I posted or just skim past them? We are no longer under the old law. Stop preaching the old laws. They don't apply.

There is a reason why the old law is no longer held as a standard for anything but tithing these days. Do christians sacrifice animals? Do they stone adulterers? Are they required to circumsize themselves? These are required under the old law but not the new. So what you are saying is that we need to keep practicing tithing but not the rest of this stuff... And why is this? Are there verses somewhere that state which old laws are kept and which are tossed out? Or does the church just pick and choose the ones that benefit itself?

I don't really care if you don't want to classify Abram as a Jew it makes no difference. He was a Hebrew. Abram did give a tithe to Melchisidek from his spoils of war. This is mentioned once and he never tithes again. Is this the example we should follow? Tithe one time in your life on your spoils of war. Ok I can get behind that practice. Did you know after that he gave the rest to Sodom? Should we practice that as well? It does have precedent...

Tithing is not mandatory and should not only not be practiced, it should not be preached. Those who do either have no understanding of the Bible or they are intentionally tricking people into handing over their money. A true Christian would not tithe. They would give to the poor and the needy and the church as they saw fit. The sentence "obedience is better than sacrifice" is the antithesis of the Bible I hope you know that.

The question of how churches will operate without guilting their congregation into giving them money does not really concern me. How did Jesus operate without collecting tithes? How did Paul? How did the apostles? They seemed to get along fine without falsely preaching their followers must pay them a tithe.

You can believe the whole thing and believe that the first covenant is fulfilled and is no longer law. You do it all the time which is why you don't follow most of the old law. A true Christian would follow the WHOLE old testament. You don't get to preach some and not the others. That's what you are accusing me of doing. Woe to ye hypocrite.

Tithing by definition does not come from the heart. It is a required giving. God loves a cheerful giver. Not one who is told by his pastor that he must give 10% or he is robbing God. Give freely and do so with a happy heart. Don't let anyone badger you into thinking a tithe of your money is required. It isn't.
DanielPrev

Con

Hello! Again, I am doing the usual (I literally have fourty minutes left to post this debate....)

I would just like to say that the BIble agrees with itself. Yes, you are correct when you say that a lot of the bindings of the Old Law does not necessarily apply to Christians nowadays, however, that does not mean that everything that was said in the Old doesn't matter anymore. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. He doesn't change his mind on things.

Response to Tithing only occuring once:
I understand that you are saying that just because it happened one time doesn't mean you should practice it, but Jesus even says in Luke 6:38 (KJV):

38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

Also, in 2 Corinthians 9:6-7, Paul says this:

6 But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.

7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.


Therefore, we now know that those who give are blessed.


Respone to Jesus and Paul not Collecting Tithes:
You say that Jesus and Paul did not tithe, but you have to understand that those times were long ago. Now, just to have a church you haveto pay all these taxes and payments just to operate. Also, Jesus and Paul preached a lot outdoors to a congregation, but now is different. A lot of the time preaching on the corner of the street draws a lot of negative attention, thus interupting the service. I believe that preaching belongs in the church, now in the world that we live in. Also, I live in Canada, where the climate is not all that great (espectially come winter), so preaching on the cornerside isn't that ideal.


Where the money goes:
In the church that I attend, a portion of the money goes towards payments, part goes towards the Pastor's "money" (he doesn't have a nother job, he is a full time pastor", part goes towards charity and helping the needy, while the rest goes towards building a church (we are currently renting out a place). The money is definitely needed to operate.


Response to me being a hypocrite?
You are telling me that the Old Covenant does not matter anymore, and then you turn your back and call me a hypocrite for not believing the Old Testament? As you said, certain things in the Old Testament are not necessary anymore, which I agree on, but that doesn't mean you just put away the whole Old Testament.

Closing remarks:
I understand that if you don't tithe, you are NOT robbing God. I get that. But when God blesses you and keeps you in a good state, with the money you need to live, doesn't it make sense to at least give a portion back to Him, in respect? I do not understand what is so hard to follow about that statement.

I thank you for giving me this opportunity. It was quite interesting.

Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by Apolitical 3 years ago
Apolitical
I agree. I am all for voluntary giving. Tithing is not voluntary giving. It is preached as something that must be done or you are robbing God
Posted by dsjpk5 3 years ago
dsjpk5
You said dogma. That means obligation. Voluntary giving, on the other hand, is another matter. Some people like giving back to the Church that has given them so much.
Posted by Apolitical 3 years ago
Apolitical
Ok philochristos I suppose that would be a very difficult point to make considering I would have to know what is in every heart of all those who preach tithing. It would not be too much of a leap to make though if we took a look at the mega churches and the tele-evangelists becoming reach preaching it. But you are right, it is not my intention to prove the historical intentions of tithing are strictly from greed. Simply that I can see who benefits the most from teaching it. The true thing I would like to get to the heart of is your second point. Why this would be so strongly defending by a lot of preachers today I will leave up to you to decide.

dsjpk5 are you saying that tithing has never been taught as a principle in the Catholic Church? At any point in history? Did it originate with protestants? Is that what you are claiming?
Posted by dsjpk5 3 years ago
dsjpk5
Obligatory tithing has never been a dogma of the Catholic Church.
Posted by philochristos 3 years ago
philochristos
It sounds like you intend to defend two resolutions:

1. The historical point that tithing in Christian churches originated from leaders wanting to scam people out of their money.

2. The theological point that the New Testament does not support tithing in churches.
Posted by Apolitical 3 years ago
Apolitical
Fair enough. I didn't want to impugn all churches as trying to rip people off. I think that the dogma was instituted in order to make money and it has been passed down as tradition from church to church without being questioned. The key point here is that it should be abolished as a practice and not be taught in churches regardless.
Posted by philochristos 3 years ago
philochristos
You are offering two different reasons for why some Churches advocating tithing, but only one of them supports the resolution. If churches are only dishonestly advocating tithing to line the pockets of the leaders, then yes, that would make it a scam. But if churches advocate tithing because of their own mistaken interpretation of the scriptures, then it is NOT a scam. So you should probably just stick with the one reason.
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