Of all the commandments lovingly given from our Heavenly Father, the law of tithing is among my favorite. In the Mormon Church, tithing is defined as “a commandment from the Lord to pay one tenth of oneâ€™s annual increase or income for the building of His Church on the earth.” This commandment has been present since the early days of the Old Testament and continues to apply to us today. (See D&C 119)
There are three reasons I love this call of sacrifice from the Lord:
1) So often, commandments offer a principle and allow you to rely on the Holy Ghost to know how to act. Being kind to others and having moral thoughts are two examples of this. This can be rewarding but it also allows for missed judgement calls. Sometimes you must learn as you go.
With the law of the tithe, it is crystal clear what is expected. In exchange, Heavenly Father promises very specific blessings. I love the simplicity. I testify that the blessings are always given when this law is followed.
2) The law of tithing is a call to action. You are expected to do something.
The Lord commands, “Thou shalt not kill.” This is easy. Just don’t do it. But the law of tithing says, “Refraining from action is not enough. I need My people to be anxiously engaged.” I like that.
3) I think that most people are giving by nature. As we see earthquakes and floods cover the earth, we all like to help financially when we can. But with each disaster, we see responses from government and charity organizations that are sometimes equally disastrous.
Tithing in the church allows a way for me to give with complete trust that the funds will be used appropriately. The Lord directs this church and the use of it’s funds. I know that. While the money may be handled by human hands, the system and procedures are of heavenly origins.