Should the Church Teach Tithing?

A Theologian’s Conclusions about a Taboo Doctrine

Russell Earl Kelly, PHD



Methodists Should Not Teach Tithing
Nazarenes Should Not Teach Tithing

Wesleyans Should Not Teach Tithing

Wesley, John, Explanatory Notes (tithing)  (s.v. “1 Corinthians 16:2) According to this lowest rule of Christian prudence, if a man when he has or gains one pound give a tenth to God, when he has or gains an hundred he will give the tenth of this also.

And yet I show unto you a more excellent way. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. Stint yourself to no proportion at all. But lend to God all you can.

“On the Use of Money from a sermon preached in 1744): Give all you can; or in other words, give all you have to God. Do not stint yourself, like a Jew rather than a Christian, to this or that proportion.

Render unto God not a tenth, not a third, not half, but all that is God’s (be it more or less) by employing all on yourself, your household, the household of faith and all mankind, in such a manner that you may give a good account of your stewardship when ye can be no longer stewards…

Star Telegraph, Jan 3, 2009

Not only did John Wesley, founder of Methodism, not emphasize tithing, but “Jesus never did. And it was never stressed in the early church. Traditionally, Methodists at denomination conferences emphasize stewardship and tithing as a goal. But tithing is not a church model,  While the Old Testament spells out guidelines, tithing was not mentioned by the Apostle Paul “except in one or two oblique references.” .

“John Wesley said earn all you can, save all you can and give all you can. He always said you take care of your own needs and take care of your family, and then take care of the church.”