Christians are not to pay tithe, theologians declare
…say Adeboye, Oyedepo, others got it wrong
The Association of Christian Theologians, at the weekend, told Christian leaders in support of paying tithe to hold their peace, saying the exercise is not meant for Christians.
The association, which made its position known after a meeting in Lagos, said that payment of tithe, as recorded in the Bible passage, Malachi 3:6 to 10, was meant for the descendants of Jacob. Nigerians and other African tribes are not included, according to the theologians.
Speaking through its National President, Prof. Kunle Macaulay, the body said Nigerians were the descendants of Ham, a Gentile, and not of Shem, “who are the Israelites, and are, as such, not obliged to pay 10 per cent of their income as demanded by the churches.”
Macaulay, who supported radio host and presenter, Ifedayo Olarinde, popularly called Daddy Freeze, in describing tithe-paying by Christians as “modern scam”, also deplored a comment credited to the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, that Christians who refused to pay tithes “are living under a curse.”
He said, “Daddy Freeze is right by calling tithe-paying a modern scam. Tithe paying is not of Christianity and we expect well educated men of God like Pastor Adeboye and Bishop (David) Oyedepo (of The Living Faith Mission) to tell their congregations this biblical truth.
“Malachi 3:6 to 10, the Bible passage being used to threaten Christians refers to the descendants of Jacob, who are children of Israel, and not Christians.
“Nigerians are descendants of Ham, the race referred to as the Gentiles, while the Israelites are descendants of Shem, which is the house of Jacob.
“Men of God should interpret the Bible in the context of the writing as well as the history of the period of writing. In verse 7 of Malachi 3, the Bible records that the Israelites did not keep to the law of paying tithe ‘ever since the time of their fathers’, and were being admonished to change.
“That passage is talking about the law of Moses and not the law of love under which Christians are expected to operate.”
The ACTS president said Christians and their leaders could raise funds to carry out their projects, “but not by deceit, manipulation, magic, suggestivity and hypnotism, as we have these days.”
The Bible, he insisted, should be studied historically, noting that many pastors nowadays were not biblically trained.
“Many of them are either retirees, pensioners or jobless people, who are now in Christian leadership,” he observed.