Terumah, is generally 2% and is not required like the tithe, but our motive to give Terumah is through generosity. “Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.”—Proverbs 3:9-10
What is an offering? What does the Lord require of us?
You see, from the very beginning—in the earliest pages of the Bible—from Cain and Abel… to Abraham… and on throughout the prophets, we see the story unfold about ‘offerings’ and what they really mean. Our offerings are not meant to buy an audience with God, but to bring us into His presence for relationship and loving fellowship with Him. It’s all about honor and relationship.
There are four types of giving, or offerings, and the Kingdom principles associated with them. Each offering has a particular way of touching God’s heart. When a person’s heart is turned toward the Lord with offering, then God’s heart turns toward that individual yearning for a closer and deeper relationship.
1. TITHE—This is a connection of our relationship with God; a picture of the covenant that we have with Him. This 10% tithe belongs to the Lord because of covenant.
“‘Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.’”—Malachi 3:10
God instructed us to give a tithe so as we can partner with Him. When we choose to worship the Lord with our giving, we are not only placing a demand on our seed to reap a bountiful harvest, but we are expressing our dependence upon God… not for financial gain.
- FIRST FRUITS—Terumah, is generally 2% and is not required like the tithe, but our motive to give Terumah is through generosity.
“Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.”—Proverbs 3:9-10
- SEED—Each year our congregation sows generous gifts at the three pilgrim Feasts of the Lord. These are not mandatory, as they are above and beyond our tithe and first fruits gifts. We see these as opportunities to sow an offering in very nutrient rich soil, and because of this we expect an abundant return.
- ALMS—Our alms are righteous acts, charitable deeds to our fellow man. Giving alms gets God’s attention. They rise as incense, as a memorial before God, and allow an opening for a blessing to come back to us. This offering reflects the loving relationship that we have with our Father God through the loving-kindness that we show to our fellow man. It always brings a blessing!
“There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, ‘Cornelius!’ And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, ‘What is it, lord?’ So he said to him, ‘Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God.’”—Acts 10:1-4
“Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.”—Matthew 6:1-4