|Hebrews 7:5-18 |
5 And truly those who are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes from the people according to the law, that is, from their brothers, even though their brothers have descended from Abraham.
6 But this person, whose descent is not counted from Levi, received tithes from Abraham, and blessed him who had the promises.
7 Yet without contradiction the lesser is blessed by the greater.
8 Here tithes are received by men who die; but there he receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives forever.
9 And I may also say that Levi, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham.
10 For he was still in the loins of his father when Melchizedek met him.
11 Therefore, if perfection could have been attained through the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law), what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchizedek, rather than be called after the order of Aaron?
12 For when the priesthood is changed, there is a necessity to change the law also.
13 For he [Jesus] of whom these things are spoken applies to another tribe [Judah], of which there is no record of a man performing priestly functions at the temple's altar.
14 For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of the tribe of Judah [not Levi]; of which tribe Moses spoke nothing concerning the priesthood.
15 And it is even more evident, when another priest arises who has a similarity to Melchizedek,
16 Who is made, not based on the legality of a commandment relating to the family of Levi, but based on the power of an endless life.
17 For He testifies, "You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek."
18 For there is truly a cancellation of the previous commandment1 [the commandment for the Levite priests to take tithes from the people according to the law, (Verse 5 above)] because of the weakness and ineffectiveness of it.
1 The Levitical Priesthood was commanded to collect tithes. Upon the sacrifice of Christ, giving his life as a guarantee for all men, he established himself as the new everlasting priesthood. Therefore the Levitical Priesthood was cancelled, abolished, disannulled; and therefore so were its tithes. Tithing died with the Levitical priesthood; the only places tithing is referenced in the New Testament is the claim of the self-righteous Pharisee, and the explanation of its death in Hebrews 7 above.
The Apostle Paul instructed people to set aside funds from their excess, but that was to relieve the poor, particularly the large numbers of poor brothers in Jerusalem. Relieving the poor does not include supporting self-appointed pastors or to maintain an uncommanded temple or building. Jesus, Paul, and Peter all denied those who solicited money for preaching; and as Christ instructed his disciples: Freely (without pay) you have received, freely (without charge) give."Mat 10:8.
Tithes were not even a part of Christianity until hundreds of years after the death of the Apostles; they were never mentioned by any Council of the Roman sect until 1119. From Francis Howgill's writing:
None of the first eight general councils ever mention the name of tithes; but the ninth, held at Lateran, under pope Calixtus the second, in the year 1119, speaks of such as had been given to the Church by special consecration; for at that time, people believing that tithes ought to be given to the poor, gave them to the heads and rulers of religious houses, who disposed of them; keeping open house for the poor and strangers, and were esteemed holy and good treasurers for the poor, as is testified by Cassion. But the council held under pope Alexander the third, in the year 1180, seeing much given to the poor and little to the priests, made a decree to restrain peoples’ freedom. There was no law, canon, or constitution of any general council that commanded tithes, or expressly supposed them a duty, before that of Lateran, in the year 1215, under pope Innocent the third; at which time the pope’s power had grown great. And then the people had greater mind to give them to the poor than to the priests; which made Innocent cry out against those who gave their tithes and first fruits to the poor, and not to the priests, as heinous offenders. At a council held at Lyons, under pope Gregory the tenth, in the year 1274, it was constituted, that it should not thenceforth be lawful for men to give their tithes at their own pleasure, as they had before done, but that they should pay all to the mother church. The great decree which speaks most plainly of them was made at the council of Trent, under pope Pius the fourth, in the year 1560. It commanded tithes to be paid under penalties of excommunication. By what has been stated, it may be seen that tithes were not even reckoned as due for many hundreds of years after Christ; and that indeed they were never due in the Second Covenant, Christ having put an end to the first priesthood, with all its shadows and carnal ordinances.
Judaism's tithes were first decreed by the pope and then retained by covetous Protestant organizations. The early Quakers refused to pay tithes and suffered large fines, imprisonment, death, and even banishment from their homeland at the hands of the Protestant priests and magistrates.
Here are the many fallacies of tithes:
The Mosaic Law was cancelled by Jesus, but there is an inner law on every man's heart, which is alive and has never been cancelled; and this inner law of God must observed and be fulfilled in us. Do we then render inoperative the law through faith? Absolutely not, instead we establish the law. The inner law on every man's heart, by which all men will be judged, only ends when a man's selfish spirit has been crucified on the inward cross of self-denial, and Christ Jesus is resurrected in him to totally control his thoughts, words, and deeds with the Law of the Spirit of Life. From the Word of the Lord within: "There are no laws when you are under complete control of the spirit; you walk in love in obedience as prompted — you don't walk in restricted flesh." See the footnote to Rom 3:28 for more understanding on why the moral laws must still be observed and are your schoolmaster until your thoughts, and words and deeds are under complete control of the Holy Spirit. The blind guides of Christendom point to this scripture and claim there is no longer any sin because all law has supposedly been done away with for anyone who believes in Jesus;* they conveniently overlook the New Testaments' many warnings of sin that completely disqualifies you for salvation or heaven, click to see. They also overlook that every man will be judged on his works and words, click to see.
*However, many Protestant sects in error claim that although the Mosaic Law with its ordinances is obsolete, you still must tithe; but tithing was an ordinance of the Levitical priesthood, created to administer the Mosaic Law, and it is also obsolete. The blind guides want your money, which the New Testament forbids!