We should pay our tithes because it is what God commands us to do, not because it is tax-deductible. That is just an added benefit.
But, if you are giving for the tax benefit, you are really barking up the wrong tree. Let us say that you give $1,000. If we assume you are in the 25% tax bracket, this means that you will save $250 off your taxes. Again, if you are giving for the tax benefit, you are giving for the wrong reason.
If you give $1,000 to save $250, you still have $750 less than what you started with. Too often people will look at something and say, “I can write it off their taxes, as if no money is expended.
We are not saying that you should not take advantage of the tax deduction. What we are saying is that you should give for the right reasons. Give joyfully.
You should be giving your tithes and offerings because the Bible instructs us to do so AND for the joy of giving to the Lord.
The United States has used the status of 501 C 3 tax-exempt as a way to circumvent the First Amendment to the Constitution, Freedom of Religion.
Many years ago, churches distributed a publication that listed the voting records of politicians in regards to legislation that would be important to Christians.
Under the guise of campaign finance reforms, our elected officials enacted legislation that would strip the 501 C 3 tax-exempt status from organizations that tried to influence voters to vote along Christian lines.
No one can endorse a candidate from the pulpit and churches can no longer distribute literature that simply gives the facts behind the votes of elected officials and how they pertain to Christian viewpoints.
If Christians would give their tithe as instructed in the Bible without regards to whether it is tax-deductible or not, churches would not have to bend to the whim of a corrupt portion of the government.
If congregations across America voted to give back their 501 C 3 status and pay the associated taxes, our government’s control of the church would be over.
This would, of course, mean that churches would have to pay taxes on the money they receive in the form of donations and would have to pay property taxes where applicable. This is a small price to pay for the church having control over what they can and cannot say.
Don’t get me wrong; as long as donations are tax-deductible, church members should take advantage of these deductions. This is simply being a good steward of the money God has entrusted to you.
One time, years ago, in our Sunday School class, a woman asked our teacher, who was also the assistant pastor, if they should tithe on their income tax refund.
The teacher’s response was that if the couple tithed on their GROSS income, then they had already tithed on this tax refund. This is TECHNICALLY correct.
However, the mere fact that the couple had the question indicates that the Holy Spirit was convicting them to tithe on this refund. In this case, it would actually be an offering since it would TECHNICALLY be paid above and beyond the tithe.
Give ten percent of all your gross income, regardless of where it comes from Let God determine if it is a tithe or an offering. Above and beyond the 10% of you gross income, you can give whatever you wish to other organizations,. That is up to you.
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