I just finished this book and it surprised me. I thought it would be an instructional book on tithing and it turned out to be stories about people just like me and my friends who tithe out of a love for God and His Word. It started out rather slow and kind of dry and I probably won't read it a second time any time down the road. It is encouraging to know that God has a plan and His plan is perfect. I would recommend this book to those that are unsure about the value of tithing and how God blesses the tithe.
Tithing: Test Me in This by Douglas Leblanc is one of the books in the Ancient Practice Series that discusses how the ancient practice of tithing is applicable to our busy lives in modern times. The author interviews several religious leaders, families and individuals to find out what they think about tithing, why they are in favor of it, and how tithing has improved their financial situations. The responses that the author got were varying, and some of the responses were unusual. All of the people interviewed were of the opinion that tithing had improved their lives and their relationships with God.
I liked this book, but I would suggest it to someone who knows a little more about the history of Christianity and has more religious vocabulary than I. The author discusses a few events from the recent history of Christianity, but I sheepishly admit that I didn't always know what he was talking about. There is also some unclear Christian vocabulary in the book that most people probably won't fully understand. There is a lot of talk about "stewardship", for example, but it is never really defined. Different people who were interviewed had various opinions about where the command to tithe comes from and how much people should tithe. Some of the individuals suggested some weird ideas alike "You should tithe, even if you are really too poor, because God doesn't want you to know where you will get your next meal." I don't agree with them, but I still liked reading this book because it discusses tithing in detail.
This book is part of the Ancient Practices Series which is a set of eight books that explore eight different disciplines of faith. The Author explores the particular topic of tithing through the telling of stores about people who practice this discipline. Each person told about are from different spiritual, social, and economic backgrounds. Some stories are from the Author's personal knowledge and interaction with the person or interviewed. While there are persons introduced that are part of those person's circle (i.e. a parishioner, or spouse or background on family history of those interviewed). There is a study-guide included for each chapter at the back of the book. I picked this book to read because frankly it is a topic that I rarely hear about in the pulpit these days. The stories shared by the author opened my eyes to thoughts and discussions about tithing. It's more than a lecture and a call to open up the checkbook. It's all about a call to open up the purse-strings of one's heart. There are some debates about a certain portion being given as mentioned in the Old Testament and the idea of "grace" bringing in an age of more service-orientated tithe. In the end I have to admit that i was pre-disposed to dislike the book, but the actual reading of it change my mind! The stories were warm and engaging and tackled the information in a way that a regular person can understand without seeking a Masters degree in Theology. I have a firmer grip and understanding of the discipline of tithing and why I should practice it for myself. I truly enjoyed this book and plan to look for more books in this series.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through a book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
"'Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this' says the LORD Almighty, 'and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.'" Malachi 3:10, NIV
when you pick up Tithing by Douglas Leblanc there's a question on the back of the book: "In these uncertain economic times, does it really make sense to tithe?"
do you ask yourself this question?
does your community of faith ask this question?
i've been challenged by this question and the importance of tithing.
Tithing is a volume in the wonderful Ancient Practices Series from Thomas Nelson. edited by Phyllis Tickle, the series covers beautiful spiritual practices that have been observed throughout spiritual history.
Tithing is a great addition to the works. it's well written and easy to follow.
it's not merely a book about tithing, it's a book about community and fellowship with God and with others.
Tithing contains thoughts and reflections from many generations and many traditions. Leblanc shares from the many conversations he had regarding the ancient pracitce of tithing.
this is a wonderful book. i recommend it for anyone on a spiritual journey.