And Now For Something Completely Different
But fret not... we're still talking about hoaxes on a grand scale. In fact... this one is far more relevant to most of you than any ridiculous claims of moon walking... and its a claim that has been foisted on millions... no... billions is a far more accurate term.
Today we're going to talk about the biggest hoax ever pulled... Tithing.
Christian Tithing is completely and totally unbiblical. Its arguably the biggest practical difference between the Eastern and Western churches. The Eastern Church does not tithe.
I'm going to share some very pointed facts:
1) Jesus didn't tithe.
2) None of Jesus' followers tithed.
3) Paul wrote 10 books to the gentiles. He never tells them to give money to anyone.
4) The only law outside the 10 commandments retained by the modern church is the Tithe
5) Money was not tithed in the Bible. Only livestock and crops.
6) The modern tithe doesn't even remotely resemble the law moses laid out in any fashion.
7) The church knows all of this.
I have always been skeptical of the tithe. For one.. you have a group of people claiming to be the sole authority on translating the law... and that law just happens to tell us to give them 10% of our money. See where I'm going? It sounds a lot like a scam to me.
Of course, back when it was first started the Bible was not available to the public. Copies were beyond rare... and precious. Now? Not so much. Now anyone with half a brain can take the time to read the relevant verses.. and its plain as day that there is no biblical basis for christians tithing 10% of their monetary income.
Lets look at some examples of tithing in the Bible... how about Deuteronomy for starters?
Deut. 14:22-29, "Thou shall truly TITHE all the INCREASE of thy SEED, that the field brings forth year by year."
"And you shall eat before the lord your God, in the place which He shall choose to place His name there, the TITHE of thy CORN, of thy WINE, and of your OIL, and the FIRSTLINGS OF THY HERDS and of thy FLOCKS: that thou may learn to fear the Lord thy God always.
And if the way be too long for thee, so that thou art not able to carry it; or if the place be too far from thee, which the Lord thy God shall choose to set His name there, when the Lord thy God hath blessed thee:
Then shall thou turn it into MONEY, and bind up the MONEY in your hand, and shall go unto the place which the Lord thy God shall choose:
And thou shall BESTOW THAT MONEY FOR WHATSOEVER YOUR SOUL LUSTETH AFTER, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for WHATSOEVER YOUR SOUL DESIRES: and YOU shall eat there before the Lord thy God, and THOU shall rejoice, THOU, AND THINE HOUSEHOLD.
And the Levite that is within thy gates, thou shall not forsake him; for he has no part, nor inheritance with thee.
At the end of three years thou shall bring forth all the TITHE of thine INCREASE the same year, and shall lay it up within thy gates:
And the Levite, (because he hath no part nor inheritance with thee,) and the STRANGER, and the FATHERLESS, and the WIDOW, which are within thy gates, shall come, and SHALL EAT AND BE SATISFIED; that the Lord thy God may bless thee in all the work of your hand which thou doest."
Now... do you see anything in that requires anyone to give anyone money? No. Food? Yes. Of course you need to give food... because the tithe is to a be a feast! Its given to everyone... to strangers... to the poor... the needy... and to YOU. And if you cannot attend the appointed place of the feast... what does it say you are to do? It says you are to sell it... and go buy what you want! Strong drink people! It says to sell the food you were going to tithe, and go buy booze!!!
The baptists among us are now officially pissed off.
See? This is why the Bible is so awesome... because it almost never says what you think it says... and what it actually says is always far better than what you've been told. And no.. that is not the only example. The tithe is described in verse after verse as increase from the land. Oils from trees.. nuts from trees.. crops... livestock... but not fish.. and certainly not money.
Jewish fishermen paid no tithe. Neither did Jewish Carpenters. Neither did jewish bankers... unless they happened to also own farm land.
But hey... I'm not against tithing completely... if a levite priest ever shows up I'll be glad to give him 10% of the tomatoes in the garden.
In closing I would also point out that the Eastern Church never adopted this insane practice... in fact.. they mock it... and rightly so.
Now for the fun part... ya wanna know what the real kicker is? The Catholic Church KNOWS this is incorrect. From the Catholic Encyclopedia:
"As the Church expanded and various institutions arose, it became necessary to make laws which would insure the proper and permanent support of the clergy. The payment of tithes was adopted from the Old Law... The earliest positive legislation on the subject seems to be contained in the letter of the bishops assembled at Tours in 567 and the [canons] of the Council of Macon in 585."
There you have it. They needed money to support their bureacracy and decided to dust off an old law that could be suitably reworked to meet all their needs and then some. The lie has been thoroughly entrenched ever since.
So have some fun... go ask you're minister to preach on the truth on tithing. See how well he takes it when you ask him to show you where Paul advised the gentiles to tithe.