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Bouncing Tithe Checks

Should you tithe 10% even if you don't have the money? (like the check may bounce)

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 ---Concerned on 5/29/09
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obewan...Yes, I was referring to being a testimony 100% of the time.
---SusieB on 6/8/09

Matthew 5:22-26.
The Jews believed that God would not accept an offering from a man until he made amends to someone that he had stolen from. Jesus added to this, in that it is proper to reconcile with ones brother offended, through making an apology to him, or trying to repair the damage to his reputation, etc. Yet, the primary use of these verses concerns making monetary restitution for things stolen. This might even include making timely payments on a debt, in place of giving to a ministry. The Bible has many verses that concern financial wisdom though.
p.s. The Lord tells us to help our poor brother, and not oppress him, Job 36:15, Psalm 12:5, 72:4, Ecclesiastes 7:7, Ezekiel 22:7, 29.
---Glenn on 6/8/09

maxin...Please quote scripture for giving 10% of your time Jesus wants 100% of your time.
---SusieB on 6/5/09

I don't think he said it was a Biblical mandate.

Where do you get 100% of time is God's? Maybe you mean we should live our lives as a "testimony" 100% of the time, but I have a very secular job that takes up about 50 hours a week. Then I have cooking, cleaning, laundry, and bills to pay. Any time left over can go to God's work as a volunteer at a Christian ministry, but we even need time for rest and recreation.

100% to God in the form of WORK is totally unrealistic. I would not even expect that standard from a "full time" Christian worker. We have enough minister burnouts as it is.
---obewan on 6/8/09

A check that "bounces" doesn't pay anything...not a bill, not a tithe. Plus it deceives the one who tries to cash the check.

I don't believe the tithe is required of New Testament Christians. But if you do... better to face the fact that you don't have the money (and work on that) than to pay with a worthless piece of paper.
---Donna66 on 6/7/09

No. Instead, you should follow the instructions of the Bible: "Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, [so let him give], not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver." In other words, give what you have with joy.
---Queen on 6/7/09

Matthew 5:23Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee,
24Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way, first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.
25Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him, lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.
26Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing.

Glenn...Maybe I'm blind, but I see nothing in these scriptures about debts. This is talking about reconciliation with a brother with whom you have a problem.
---SusieB on 6/7/09

Tithes were paid in Israel by Israelites on some locally grown vegetables, and domesticated animals (Leviticus 27:30-32). Approximately equaling the median salary, they were paid to Levites, Numbers 18:21, 24, who then paid a tithe to the Priests, Numbers 18:26-28. Tithes weren't accepted from some sinners, Deuteronomy 23:18. Tithes were not paid on money owed, as a debt is to be paid first, Matthew 5:23-26. Most Christians suffer occasional hard financial times due to bad spending decisions, but Leviticus 25:48. If a poor person were to pay a tithe, he would need to receive a donation afterward. Christians give voluntary offerings and alms with joy.
p.s. Leviticus 25:42, Proverbs 22:7, Matthew 5:25, Romans 13:8, 1Corinthians 7:21-23.
---Glenn on 6/6/09

maxin...Please quote scripture for giving 10% of your time instead of money. Jesus wants 100% of your time.
---SusieB on 6/5/09

I do have some guilt over not being able to tithe with money, i feel it's very important and i have faith that God always provides. Having no ability to support my church financially, i try my very hardest to give at least 10% of my other blessings. Spending a couple hours a day in God's word, Giving your time and efforts and abilities to the Church where man power is needed, these are ways i give my 10%. The tithe is to God and his work, For every 8 members who are able to give money, maybe one is willing to give manpower. Since i struggle badly, i want to be one of the ones beautifying the grounds, cleaning, and offering my services to other endevors of my church family.
---Maxin3895 on 6/5/09

I beg your pardon. I am a member of the working poor but I also know what Scripture says about the tithe.
My position is supported with scripture.

Just do a thorough search in the Old Testament on the subject of the poor tithe.

1/3 of all FOOD tithes (tithes were always food only and never money)collected from farmers and animal herders, went to take care of widows, the poor, and the disabled people.

We don't do that today. I know people who paid tithes to abusive churches and were evicted from their apartments.

There should be limits to all this legalism.

I am happy you are blessed though.
---obewan on 6/4/09

2 Corinthians 9:6-9
But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly, and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.
Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give, not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:
(As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad, he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.)

God loves a cheerful giver. Pray before you give. God will tell you what is needed then give joyfully!

---miche3754 on 6/4/09

I beg your pardon. I am a member of the working poor but I also know what Scripture says about the tithe. You can justify not giving the tithe however you please but I am a witness that if you trust God with it, he will supply your needs and more. We walk by faith and not by sight. Have a wonderful day.
---pg1 on 6/4/09

If you take your tithe off the top and then balance your check book it should not bounce. It sounds like you may be looking for an excuse not to tithe. Trust God with the tithe. He will not fail you.
---pg1 on 6/4/09
You obviously have never met a Christian who is a member of the working poor.

You know nothing of this woman's finances, yet you advise as if you do.

What if she is a single mom with a sick child? Maybe her tithe check would not bounce, but her rent would instead.

We all need to realize the truth that OT tithes were FOOD. And, 1/3 went to the poor. The poor TOOK from the tithe and did not pay tithes.
---obewan on 6/4/09

If you take your tithe off the top and then balance your check book it should not bounce. It sounds like you may be looking for an excuse not to tithe. Trust God with the tithe. He will not fail you.
---pg1 on 6/4/09

obewan....Get real! Anybody could survive without a computer. (Susie B.)

O.K. a person can "survive" but you might as well ask them to give up their car.

Before computers, I went to the bank weekly. Now I go to the bank once every 4 months.

Before computers, when I was laid off, it took months to find reemployment. Now it takes days.

Before computers, I paid $1000 in broker commissions for every $10,000 invested in my IRA. Now I am my own broker, and can invest ANY amount for only $7. If a person plans to have enough retirement money left at all it is a "virtual" necessity, or at least owning one will greatly INCREASE wealth. They pay for themselves.
---obewan on 6/3/09

obewan....Get real! Anybody could survive without a computer. What do you think we did before we had them? That's the problem with today's culture. Everybody thinks they can't survive without all this high tech stuff. Do you really think people will chose this stuff over eating and rent? The day will come when many will regret ever having a computer.
---SusieB on 6/2/09

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Bouncing checks are illegal in the U.S. as well and it is also stealing from God. Every time you bounce a check you cost your Church about $25 in returned check fees. It is better to give ten dollars of real money than $500 dollars of bad.
---TIMOTHY on 6/2/09

If you are having problems with paying your bills, get rid of all the things you really don't need.
---SusieB on 6/2/09
That only works if there are things she does not need. I would submit that computers are necessary for job hunting, insurance claims, and online banking. I could not survive without mine, and it saves a lot of gas money.

Then too there are people with minimum wage jobs and who are single parents with children with medical problems like diabetes or asthma with hundreds in uninsured expenses. Not understanding that they can barely make rent, and requiring them to tithe shows no mercy. One friend has diabetes that costs over $450 a month!
---obewan on 6/2/09

You should write the tithes check and make sure the money is there to cover it. If you are having problems with paying your bills, get rid of all the things you really don't need like COMPUTER, CELL PHONES, CABLE. These are not necessities and neither is eating out.
---SusieB on 6/2/09

That proposal is as bad as tithing with credit cards.

I suggest you read the other threads on tithing and do a thorough Bible study on the subject.

Many churches force abusive teachings on people who really truly cannot afford to "tithe".

I used to attend such a church, and there were people there who paid their tithes only to have their heat shut off in the middle of the winter or be evicted from their apartments.

Use some reason, and realize there is nothing in the New Testament that mandates "tithing". 10% is good if you can afford it, but freewill offerings apply to the modern church. Tithes were OT law, food only, and paid to the Levites by those who dealt in food like farmers or herders.
---obewan on 6/1/09

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You should never write checks when you don't have money to back it up. Make sure you have more than enough money to cover the check. It would look bad to God and to others if you give away money you don't have. You cause the ones you donate to to expect the money & then it could be taken away from them. Some would call that being an Indian-giver. Isn't it against the law to write checks that you know will bounce?
---Betty on 6/1/09

I think you should include whatever amount you decide to give into your budget and make sure the money is set aside. I would say make sure you very important bills are paid like rent and food water and electric then give what you can. But if it comes to the new $100 purse or the church, give the money to God you can't take the purse to heaven.
---Sara on 5/30/09

If this is your real situation . . . have you put this question on the Net because you don't have a pastor you trust enough to take this matter to your pastor? If this is so, what you do with your money is not the main thing for you to be concerned about. You need to have a pastor who you trust enough so you are glad and eager to take this to him and/or whoever he trusts to help you . . . not merely so you can take care of your money right, but so you can have *love* together in how you work this out.
---Bill_bila5659 on 5/31/09

Not being facetious, just illustrating a point:

Should you have the Internet even if you don't have the money? (like the check may bounce)

Should you have electricity even if you don't have the money? (like the check may bouncer)

If you are going to tithe, budget it like you do your monthly bills. If you're paying your bills w/out writing bad checks, you will be able to do the same for tithing. I began tithing when one day praying about my finances and I received a word that I would have better control over my finances when I learned to budget my tithing. I did and the word was 100% true.
---AlwaysOn on 5/30/09

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Yes it is wrong to practice this. Anyone who knowingly does this is sinning and could be in danger of punishment by God. I would rather not give anything than to do this dishonest thing.
If the check is good ,and you know the money will be there, I might go ahead and do this but not intentionally.
---Robyn on 5/30/09

wouldn't that be like offering God the left over fruit, the bad crop? we should always give the first fruits the best we have to God. pay tithe first. even when adding the bills up on paper, put your tithe first on that list too. make it the first thing you pay, and there may never be another hot check in your life to worry about.
---a_friend on 5/30/09

I don't think that that would be a logical thing to do. The problem for some Christians is that they hear stories about miracles that happened, and they automatically think that because of these few stories, a miracle is going to happen to them.

I'd be careful with this one. I think you have to be really in tune to what God is saying if you want to do such a thing, because if it is in His will, yes, He will provide, but if not, then it's not in His will to provide for it.
---amand6348 on 5/30/09

Writing a bad check is illegal. Don't do it.
---john on 5/30/09

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Concerned: "Tithe" IF you want & are able to. A bounced check would say you're not able to since you can't give what you don't have. :)

As a New Testament believer/Christian, God does not require you to tithe. I've heard many preachers use Mal. 3:8-9 as justification to legalistically intimidate & make their flocks tithe. But, the truth is verses 8-9 pertains only to the nation Israel -- not the Church!

Some preachers say tithing is a good model for giving but it's not a Bible requirement for the Church. I agree. Again, if you want & are able to, tithe! The "giving" model for the Church is in Lk. 6:38 & 2 Cor. 9:6-15. Give cheerfully! :)

---Leon on 5/30/09

In the UK it is a criminal offence to issue a cheque (as we spell it here!) in the knowledge there are not sufficient funds to honour it.

I wonder though whether this question has its roots in the mistaken theology that God rewards us financially more then we have given Him?

Does the questioner think that maybe if he issues this cheque, God will suddenly provide him with money to enable the cheque to be honoured?
---alan8566_of_uk on 5/30/09

FWIW, I have my tithe check, as well as my other financial obligations, deducted and sent automatically by my bank.
---Cluny on 5/29/09

And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. Colossians 3:17
---Bible on 5/29/09

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God would not want anyone to write a bad check. Food for thought would be if a person should tithe 10% of a their gross income or their net. If a person finds themselves in tough times, God understands your needs. But if you've got enough to buy a coffee, you've got enough to buy someone else a coffee.
---Jo_Ann on 5/29/09

If an individual is going to "tithe" they should be certain that they do not write a bad check for it. It is like the story in Acts Ch. 5 where Ananias and his wife Sapphira conspired to lie to the Holy Spirit, it's not just about defrauding the church finances or the pastor. Whatever you call you contribution, tithe or offering, it's your choice to make it, do it right. We are instructed in Scripture to support our home church, where we are being fed the word.
---tommy3007 on 5/29/09

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