As I lay awake unable to sleep last night, the Lord was showing me something about the Old Testament law in a way I’d never seen it before.  This is concerning Matthew 5:17- 18, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.  For verily I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.”   This is a scripture widely used to teach us that the law was fulfilled and brought to completion by Jesus.  This is how the Holy Spirit explained it to me.  We will say you have a contract with the State to build a road from point A to point B.  You start at point A, and when you have built the road to point B, the terms and requirements of the contract have been satisfied, and you stop building.  That seems simple enough.
    In the past, my understanding of that verse was, there is a huge difference between filling a glass of water until it overflowed,  as opposed to throwing it on the floor and smashing it.  Jesus said He didn’t come to destroy the law (as in breaking and destroying the glass containing the water), but to fulfill it (fill it up).   And filling the glass up until it can hold no more does not take it away, but merely fills it. Well, that’s true, but when you look closely at the word “FULFIL”, that means Jesus didn’t come to destroy the law, but to satisfy the requirement of it and pay it in full, pay it off, and end the requirement of it.   Last night the Lord finally got it across to me, and this morning when I got up, I went to the Greek and tore that verse apart word by word. Then the light came on!  Revelation!
     When you make a contract to buy a car, you make the payments until the last payment is made, then, if you’re smart, you will stop making payments on it, because the requirement of the contract has been satisfied, paid in full.  If you’re not smart, though, you’ll just keep on making payments, and the bank will not stop you from doing so.
  And that is largely what the church has done.   They’ve kept us making payments on a paid-up account.  Now, I’m talking about tithing.  The Apostle Paul understood that, and nowhere in the New Testament after the resurrection of Jesus, was tithing ever mentioned again, nor was it ever required of the Gentile converts.  Go ahead!  Search for yourself!  It isn’t there!  But Paul did say we should give willingly and cheerfully.  Giving was never done away with.
 Malachi 3:8-9 says, “Will a man rob God?  Yet ye have robbed me.  But ye say, wherein have we robbed thee?  In tithes and offering.  Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.  Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, than there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of Hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not bee room enough to receive it.” So then, if Jesus redeemed us from “the curse”, and the Bible says He did, then we are also redeemed from THIS curse in Malachi 3:9.  But churches say NO.
 Here’s something REAL interesting.  Go back to Malachi 1:1 and read the whole book, and tell me who God, through Malachi, was talking to.  The church today?  NO! In Malachi 2:1, God specifically addressed the Priests!  They were crooked and corrupt and taking the tithes that were meant for the Levites.  Do Pastors today know that?  They have the same Bible you do, so I have to say, most likely.  But it brings money into the church, right? So why not use it?
    I have constantly been bombarded with “guilt” thoughts ever since I quit tithing recently.  Yes, I still give, but what God tells me to give, and when.  A couple years ago, the Lord got on my case about my giving.  Every time I went to church, when the offering time came, (that’s over and above the tithe we paid) we’ll say $50 or some other figure would come to mind.  Whatever it was, I’d write a check for that, and by the time the minister giving the offertory message was done, I was all beat up and would tear that check up and write a bigger one.  Then I couldn’t pay my bills.  We couldn’t even buy groceries. But at the same time, no matter HOW MUCH I gave, I felt I was cheating God and it wasn’t enough.  This happened every single week!
     Finally, the Lord told me to pray and ask Him what I was to give before I left home, and have the check already written out when I got to church.  And I was confident that the amount I heard in my spirit was from the Lord.  Guess what? When the offertory message was given, I felt guilty again and started to tear up the check, and the Lord said NO, DON’T YOU DO THAT!  YOU GIVE WHAT I TOLD YOU TO GIVE, AND NOT A PENNY MORE!   The pressure to give is unbelievable, and if it works on me, how it must also work on others.  Now sometimes He tells me not to give anything, and that was a real shocker, because it’s always been my habit to give every time I was there.  I’m free from that, but oh, boy, the guilt still lingers.  How I wish I could help people get over that, and help them to learn to give WILLINGLY, not by constraint or guilt, so they could be blessed for it.
      Actually, I saw very little if any blessing ever for all the hundreds of thousands of dollars I gave, but yet I did it out of both wanting to serve and please God, and, thanks to Pastors, fear of being “cursed” if I didn’t.  I see the biggest stumbling block to my really having joy in the Lord is how people are being manipulated by the fear of being cursed by not tithing.  Oh, and tithe isn’t enough, there’s “offerings”, which they teach you that you’re only giving God what belongs to Him by tithing, so you haven’t given a cent until you’ve given over and above your tithe.. Once you’ve exceed the tithe, only then are you giving.  And then they tell you that if you want your prayers answered you must give the Lord “sacrificial” offerings.   I notice something in the Old Testament rites of giving animal sacrifices.  The sacrifice had to bleed.  And if you aren’t being “bled”, then it isn’t a sacrifice. No wonder why church people are broke, or feel exploited.
    You know, I would never have had to ask the Lord for finances to buy groceries had I not given all my money away like a fool. 
    Today when my wife and I were talking, I showed her how the tabernacle was built by freewill offerings, and the people were told to stop giving, because there was enough.  When is there ever enough today?  Can you tell me EVEN ONE TIME any church has said to their people, STOP GIVING, THERE’S TOO MUCH?  The temple was built the same way, by freewill giving, not obligation, nor threats of the curse. The curse! ARRGH! THE CURSE!!! IT’S UPON ME IF I DON’T GIVE THEM WHAT THEY DEMAND OF ME!  THE CURSE!  THE CURSE!!!
    Funny thing; out of one side of their mouth I’m taught at church that Jesus redeemed me from the curse. Out of the other side, I’m told they meant every curse but the Malachi curse. That means then, I’m NOT redeemed from the curse at all, if I’m only redeemed from part of it.  Either Jesus is Lord of all, or He isn’t Lord at all. Which is it?
     Sadly, I could have paid our home off many times over with the hundreds of thousands of dollars I have given in tithes, but we are not “living in overflow” even though we have faithfully obeyed God by tithing for over 16 years.  I really thought I was obeying God.  Pure and simple, we were deceived, and now I’m suffering for it.  What really breaks my heart, though, is that my wife is suffering for it, too. I don’t regret doing what I believed at the time was God’s will, but wish I’d been led by the Lord in my giving, instead of being led by false teachers.  I tithed off the gross of everything that I earned, not even deducting my expenses (cost of the seed) first, faithfully for 16 years and we’re worse off today than when I started tithing. So I can clearly see now, that if Malachi 3:10 really worked, I would overflowing in financial blessings.
    Maybe it takes more than 16 years for it to start to kick in?  I wonder if anyone else has noticed this?  Or could it be I was trying to hold God to something that He had made obsolete, by Jesus “fulfilling” the law?
    Many Pastors that push tithing have huge salaries, live in fancy houses, drive new cars, have expensive clothes, while the people in their congregations pay tithes and are struggling to put food on the table.  What’s the difference?  The Pastors receive tithes.  The people of the congregation don’t.  So, in case you’re wondering, if you’re on the “receiving” end of tithing, life is a lot different than if you’re on the “giving” end. Many of the people in churches today are struggling, trying to finance the Pastor’s “vision for the church”.  And some churches are financing huge building projects. They tell us “without faith it is impossible to please God”.  And the Bible says that.  And of course if we have faith, we’ll pay our tithe, right?  But if you took away THEIR benefits that come from other people paying them tithe, could they live by the same faith they expect the members of their congregation to?  I wonder. 
    I’d like to see every church in the world tell their people to stop tithing.  But it won’t happen in my lifetime.  If your salary depends on telling people to tithe, you’re not likely to tell them to stop.  But if people had the freedom to give as the Holy Spirit led them, I think the churches might even be better off financially than they are now.