It is interesting that EGW selected the location of Madison College, and was on its board of directors, yet Madison was never affiliated with any conference, union, division, or the GC. Madison was an independent ministry, and the fore-runner of today's independent ministries, and the spirit of ASI and GYC. My parents met at Madison (as I think Sean Pitman's did as well) so I have Madison to thank for my existence. Sadly, the school was shut down in 1964, but the spirit of independent ministries lives on, and they deserve to be funded generously. I do not advocate diverting tithe money away from the conferences. But the problem with today's official church structure has little to do with lack of funds, and everything to do with lack of direction.
What a great article!! Before we get off on the tithe track let's not overlook the fact that the article directly addresses freewill giving not tithe. The increase in tithe seems to have been a resulting perk of the increase in non-tithe giving. Adventists have always tithed on a Scriptural basis what we haven't done is freely give from a Scriptural obligation. Surely the resulting blessings of God will follow both in souls and a renewed spiritual focus if we do. I'd like to hear some of the stories of those individuals who decided to give more. I'd be willing to bet (um, offer) that most have seen God work in a whole different way. The gist of the article is a real positive for all Christians particularly those who live in our western affluence.It makes me want to give more.
You raise a good point, Doug; though I have not personally heard the accounts firsthand, it has been very gratifying to hear the author recount some of the testimonies he has been told. As a local church elder and treasurer of many years, I can't wait to see the effects this could have in revitalizing many a church tired of not knowing how to motivate its membership to raise their giving just a little more to cover the full round of ministry many churches provide their members. The promised social and spiritual benefits are icing on the cake.
What's the name of the booklet in Spanish?
Is it readily available in English? BTW, we have a friend who is trying to set up an orphanage in Haiti and she gets no help from any Adventist organization. She mentioned how much could be raised for needful ministries all around the world including many of the poorest divisions if every church member would simply give one dollar a month to a needy world church fund. I know that would eliminate one good meal at the Golden Corral once a year but it might be worth it? I always thought that if an American church were to adopt a sister church in some poor area of the globe that evangelism on both fronts would be greatly increased. "Where your treasure is..." This new, Third World discovered biblical approach to giving could get really exciting. I suspect that God is just waiting for an opportunity to add His matching funds.
Is it true that SOP says "zero savings" in regard to how the church uses tithe money? And is it true that we keep billions of dollars of tithe money in long-term investment accounts? A word-search of SOP returns zero results for "zero savings," so I'm not sure why quotations were used. Please provide references for these assertions.
Zero savings, as principal.. not as a direct quote word by word. That is, to avoid tithe money purposely unused. And Tithe fund that become Long term Investment is happening everywhere especially in NAD. Go ahead and check it by yourself and you'll find it.
You have to give in order to get.
"Religious and spiritual interests must not be narrowed down and subordinated to the accumulation of means in the conference treasury, that the officers may stand high in the estimation of the people as good financiers. The Lord looks beneath the surface to the outcome, and He does not approve of such financiering." -Ms 17, 1908. (’The Work in California,’ February 15, 1908) Manuscript Releases, Vol. 8, p.8
“In some conferences it has been considered commendable to save up means, and to show a large surplus in the treasury. But in this God has not been honored. It would have been better if the money thus laid by had been wisely expended in supporting diligent, efficient laborers in needy fields.” Gospel Workers, p. 456.3
GOD'S MOST REPETITIVE DREAMS AND VISIONS GIVEN TO ELLEN WHITE: "ZERO BALANCE" OF TITHING FUND IN THE BANK ACCOUNTS.. BUT THE MOST AVOIDED QUOTATIONS BY OUR OFFICIAL CHURCH CONFERENCES EVER! (Money Talks) "Let the Lord's money be donated to support the ministers in foreign countries where they are working to lift the standard in new fields. This is God's money, and He designs that it shall be used in sustaining the ministry, in educating a people to prepare to meet their God. . . . If you have more means than you need to settle [with] your ministers in a fair, liberal, Christian manner, there are other places where you can help, where there are but few people and poor, and the tithe is limited. Send the Lord's money to them. This I have been repeatedly shown is the way to do. . . .” - Manuscript Releases, Vol. 1, p. 189 - 190
What a tragedy! This is a serious "willful neglecting" mentality of some of our paid ministers/leaders: They don't care about women ordination, homosexuality, evolution, jewelries, watching TV/go to restaurant/shopping on Sabbath, but those paid ministers shall curse the church members that build a huge university, hospitals, schools, sanitariums funded by our own tithe. They will consider those properties as "unclean" and "abhorrent" due to the proactive & well-done initiative of the members to use their tithe without their (conferences' officers) discretion. But how about women ordination? Long term investment from tithe? Homosexuality? Keeping the Sabbath? Evolution? If those paid ministers can do whatever they want, is it OK for the church members to build the multiple more of the new huge Adventists universities/schools/hospitals for the needy--mission fields worldwide funded directly by our own tithe? Let's be fair... please! *Money talks*
Please pay attention to the words *"...as God has instructed me to do.”* “It has been presented to me for years that my tithe was to be appropriated by myself to aid the white and colored ministers who were neglected and did not receive sufficient properly to support their families. When my attention was called to aged ministers, white or black, it was my special duty to investigate into their necessities and supply their needs. This was to be my special work, and I have done this in a number of cases. No man should give notoriety to the fact that in special cases the tithe is used in that way.” Spalding and Magan Collection, p. 215.2 “Some cases have been kept before me for years, and I have supplied their needs from the tithe, as God has instructed me to do.” Spalding and Magan Collection, p. 215.5
Dnieper Alahin Vega, the name of the booklet in Spanish is, Dar como Dios manda.
The book isin tthe process of being translated as we speak. It should be available shortly. Pastors in Dallas have been asking about it.
This might be a little off topic, but I'm going for it anyway. We don't like to turn in our tithe to our local church because we don't believe our finances are anybody else's business. You know how people talk, even when they're not supposed to. Anyway, we've always sent it directly to the conference. Now they will not accept it because our church accepts on-line donations. Any thoughts on where we can turn it in?
It seems like now somebody at the conference knows your finances.The on-line donations part is something I've never heard of. But this might be a good place to get an answer to your question.
Your conference may also accept online donations. Ours does. We send our tithe and World Budget funds to the conference and turn in our local offerings to the local church.
Thanks bray. We were paying online. But for whatever reason, they won't accept in anymore because our local church accepts online donations too. Seems weird to me.
"base voluntary giving on a strictly Biblical foundation. He argues convincingly that the only way to do this is to go back to the Bible". Interesting that the more we go back to the Bible, the more we see of God's will for us. Why not follow all of God's commands, statutes, and judgments?