|Hebrews 7 |
1 This Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him,
2 To whom Abraham gave a tenth of all the spoils. His name when translated means "King of righteousness;"and also "King of Salem," which means "King of peace."
3 Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, he remains as a priest continually.
4 Now consider how great this man was, to whom even the patriarch Abraham gave a tenth of the spoils.
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.
19 For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by which we draw near to God.
20 And since he was made a priest with an oath [from God himself],
21 (For those [Levite] priests were made without an oath; but this was with an oath by him who said to him, "The Lord swore and will not change it, 'You are a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.'").
22 By so much greater [a promise] Jesus became the guarantee of a better covenant.
23 And truly there were many priests [of the Levites], because they died and so could not continue.
24 But this man, because he continues forever, has an unchangeable priesthood.
25 Therefore he is able to save to the uttermost those who come to God by him, because he lives forever to make intercession for them.
26 For it was appropriate for us to have such a high priest [Jesus], who is holy, innocent, undefiled, separate from sinners2, and made higher than the heavens. [From the Word of the Lord within: "See myself — thus no sin has a place in me." If Jesus joined in union with one still sinning and defiled, everyone in His body, including Jesus Himself, would be defiled. Sin has to go before you can partake of the divine nature.]
27 Unlike those other high priests, he does not need to offer up sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for the people's, because he did this once and for all when he offered up himself.
28 For the law makes men high priests who have infirmities; but the word of the oath, which came after the law, appoints the Son, who is perfect forevermore.
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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!
2 Jesus, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners. If Jesus is separate from sinners, where do sinners-saved-by-grace go? They don't go to heaven with Jesus because he is separate from sinners! Jesus expelled Satan and his angels from heaven because they sinned. Jesus expelled Adam and Eve from paradise because they sinned. Now sinning Christians have been told they will go to heaven, but Jesus is separate from sinners. Sinning Christians have been told they are the bride of Christ, to be married to Jesus; but Jesus is separate from sinners. The ministers tell sinning Christians that they are part of the body of Christ, but Jesus is separate from sinners. How could a sinner become a part of Jesus, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, and separate from sinners, without defiling himself and everyone with him? The ministers of Christendom are telling their followers fables, just like Paul predicted: For the time will come when men will not endure sound doctrine, but they will heap [accumulate in piles] to themselves teachers after their own lusts, who will say what their itching ears want to hear; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and will be turned to fables. 2 Tim 4:3-4. But we can become the bride of Christ, and we can become part of Christ's body, and we can be in heaven with Jesus, IF we go to him to be cleansed and purified. This cleansing and purification is necessary and is the result of denying yourself and taking up the inward cross of self-denial and obedience to the Lord. There are no sinners-saved-by-grace; there are only former sinners saved by grace. To be saved is to be delivered from sins; so a sinner-saved-by-grace is an oxymoron.
From the Word of the Lord within:
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