Written on October 16th, 2004 - 2:57AM Last Updated: February 14th, 2005 - 6:58PM
The last tithe commanded by Yahweh had its purpose to meet the needs of the poor, the traveler within Israel, the orphan and widow, and the Levite as well.
At the end of every three years you shall bring forth all the tithe of your increase in the same year, and shall lay it up within your gates: and the Levite, because he has no portion nor inheritance with you, and the foreigner living among you, and the fatherless, and the widow, who are within your gates, shall come, and shall eat and be satisfied; that Yahweh your God may bless you in all the work of your hand which you do. (Deuteronomy 14:28, 29)
As the Christ taught, we always have the poor with us. He knew this when confirming the Law with Israel, when He commanded that there be a tithe (tenth) specifically for the ones often left uncared for. Yahweh specifically promised a blessing of all the work which the Israelites do, if they will obey this commandment. This tithe went to primarily to the outcasts of the day:
The foreigner, whom was looked upon as "a stranger from the Covenant, having no hope and being without God in this world" (Ephesians 2:11-12). They had no promise of blessings from God, being outside His elect people. Yahweh had no responsibility to bless them, as they followed false gods, going after the vanity of their darkened minds, being blinded to the truth by their continual sin (Romans 1:21), (Ephesians 4:17-19). Even so, God shows His grace by providing a testimony against them, through commanding Israel to set aside a tenth of their income every three years, to share with these people. Seeing such liberality of grace, perhaps they would turn from vanity unto the true God.
The orphan and widow, who often were looked upon children of sinners. David asked God to leave his enemies fatherless and widows out of judgement (Psalms 109:9-12), and God Himself promised such judgement for the children of Israel if they mistreated orphans and widows (Exodus 22:22-24). God hated such behavior and thus gave to them in return. Israel likely viewed orphans as recipients of such because of their sinful parents. Even so, Yahweh often specifically commanded that the orphans be not neglected, and rather receive support from those who could give it. To do so was to again show the boundless grace of God, becoming a defender of the orphan, who now looked to Yahweh when their father and mother forsook them (Psalms 27:10).
The Levite, who had no inheritance apart from the support of the sacrifices. Having no land, perhaps they were despised by the other tribes, whose fathers had forsook Yahweh when it mattered. The Levites were the ones who assisted the priests, and thus were mediators between Yahweh and Israel. They deserved support for their work, and were not to be neglected.
The third tithe was important, for with it God had made provision for the ones often neglected. Simply because the tithe was laid aside every three years does not mean it only lasted the one year. It could well have been a storing that would be meted out to those in need in the next two years, until it was again gathered from their income. And so the orphans, the widows, the foreigner, and the Levite, would be provided needful things, and God would bless the hands of those giving.
We see that God greatly cares for His ministers, those who serve His people. He makes provision for them not one, but three times. Each tithe has a part with the Levites: the first going only to them, and the second and third being shared with them as they had need. This precedent is continued in the New Covenant.
As you read this site, you will hopefully come to know Yahweh more fully.
But all of this continuing knowledge is useless unless and until you come into union with Him. I use the word union because it is truly a marriage. It is that deep connection we all seek, for which we most often look in other people. However, the truth is that our hearts will only be fulfilled when we enter that union in fullness with the One Who made us.
This is the grace of God, that He has not stayed distant for us only to worship as Creator. But He has come unto us, even become one of us—in His Son, ChristJesus—in order to share an intimate union with us. He desires such closeness that it truly will envelope our entire life, transforming us into something new and wonderful.
You may have already entered this union with Him and only seek to know Him better through reading here. But if you have not, as you do read, let this Gospel sink into your heart as you read it now.
God loves you, and has cast your sins into the sea. He has sent His only Son as the Savior of the world—that includes you.
That Son, JesusChrist, was born as a man through a virgin who had given her life to Yahweh; He lived without sin, reflected the glory of His Father, God, in all His words and deeds, and was persecuted even unto death because of it.
His death upon a cross was the powerful explosion that separated you from your life of death. It remains for you, now, to enter into that death with Him. As you die to the one you are now, a person separated from God from your many sins, you will be born anew, with a nature predisposed to live rightly. This gift is free to you, with nothing you can do to earn it. It is the mercy of God to offer it to you, as He loves you so much! All you must do is receive it by trusting Him to have delivered you. Simply place your life in His hands and embrace the freedom that came through that death on the cross.
The Gospel is that Jesus did not remain dead, but rose again on the third day after His crucifixion! Death could not hold Him, as He was without sin. And so death will not be able to hold you, as you identify with Him fully through your trust in Him. Let go of yourself and confess Him as Lord of your life. The power of His death and resurrection will work in you all that your Creator has destined for you. You will truly enter a new life and experience that intimate union you have been seeking all of your life.
So ponder these words as you read here of this great God—Yahweh—and all that He has revealed to His creation. Let His Spirit testify to your heart that these words are true, that God is Love, and that He sent His Son so that you might receive the life that is unbound by time and space. As you feel that witness in your heart, simply believe and receive what He is offering to you, even now, and begin your new life as a child of God.
Please write to me and let me know when you take this step, as I will be your brother in Christ—we will be one in Him!
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