Poll: Giving to God a Moral Obligation?

| | Comments (5)

It is fairly clear that giving of our firstfruits to God is a moral action. Poll question: is it also a moral obligation? That is to say, it is good to give to God; is the converse also true--it is bad to not give to God?

For the sake of simplicity, we'll use the word "tithe" to mean the firstfruits which we give to God, and "tithing" to mean the givign of said firstfruits. Understand that this is a rather broad use of the word and it can include but does not imply the narrower meaning of the Jewish commandment/cultic obligation nor does it imply any percentage of income.

For the record, I think that we do indeed have a moral obligation to tithe. What do you guys think?

[Note: I'm just looking for a yes/no with an optional short rationale. I'm not really looking for discussion on this one. We can save the persuading and refuting for a subsequent post.]

5 Comments

Is it bad not to do something God says to do? Seems like an easy answer. Yes, it's a moral obligation.

Tom, what Wink is distinguishing between is a bad action and a morally wrong action. If giving has moral worth, then not giving is of course going to be bad. What he wants to know is whether it's also morally wrong. Some people believe that there are actions that are good but not morally required. Not doing them would be, to some degree, bad. A common example would be choosing to give money to a charity every time you would have gone to a movie. Hardly anyone thinks going to a movie is wrong. It would be better if you gave your money to a charity, some say. It's therefore bad in some sense to use the money for the movie rather than the charity. That doesn't make it wrong. So all this is to show that something can be bad without being wrong, which means it might not be a moral obligation to give even if it's bad not to.

I think the strongest justification for thinking of it as morally wrong is that none of our stuff is really ours to begin with. We're stewards of it. It's hard to read the minas/talents parable(s) without concluding that it's morally wrong to hoard all the stuff God gives you and never use it for the sake of the kingdom.

yes, wrong not to give back to God. None of it is ours anyway.

Um, I mean yes, giving to God is a moral obligation. =)

If everything belongs to God, then is it accurate to describe tithing or giving to charity as "giving to God"? Is it possible to give someone something that is already their possession? My guess is that the term "giving to God" is just a colloquial way of expressing good stewardship.

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