"And now, O priests, this command is for you. If you will not listen, if you will not take it to heart to give honor to my name, says the Lord of hosts, then I will send the curse upon you and I will curse your blessings. Indeed, I have already cursed them, because you do not lay it to heart. Behold, I will rebuke your offspring, and spread dung on your faces, the dung of your offerings, and you shall be taken away with it. So shall you know that I have sent this command to you, that my covenant with Levi may stand, says the Lord of hosts. -- Malachi 2:1-4 (ESV)
Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me. But you say, 'How have we robbed you?' In your tithes and contributions. You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing me, the whole nation of you. Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need. -- Malachi 3:8-10 (ESV)
I also found out that the portions of the Levites had not been given to them, so that the Levites and the singers, who did the work, had fled each to his field. So I confronted the officials and said, "Why is the house of God forsaken?" And I gathered them together and set them in their stations. Then all Judah brought the tithe of the grain, wine, and oil into the storehouses. -- Nehemiah 13:10-12 (ESV)
John Hagee is a renowned false teacher. He idolizes Israel to an unbiblical extent and is completely sold out to the politics of this country. He once preached that if people did not like hearing Merry Christmas, they should get on the next plane and get out of his country. Heck of an evangelism plan there Johnny. To add insult to this injury, Hagee is also a tithing whore. Now bear with me beloved. Preachers can believe wrongly in tithing and not be abusive with it. We are ultimately still bound by the eternal principle of sowing and reaping, and God loves a cheerful giver. If you find a church that is truly preaching the uncompromised Gospel you will never find a better source for your giving. A line gets crossed though when you are someone like Robert Morris or John Hagee who wield tithing like a cudgel against the sheep of the Lord while claiming it is really God who is beating them senseless. Consider the following quote from Hagee I saw on Facebook this weekend:
"If you choose not to tithe, God says you live under a financial curse. He shuts prosperity off as an option for you. I did not say that the Bible says that. If you choose to tithe God says I will rebuke the devourer that is Satan for your sake. That means He will put the devil on a leash and hold Him from touching what belongs to you. He will not allow him to touch your children. He will not allow him to touch your business. He will not allow him to control your health. He will not allow him to torment your mind. He will not allow him to rule you with depression. You are a child of God!" - Pastor John Hagee
The bible says no such thing. I have studied this subject extensively and actually written a book on it and I can say unequivocally that Hagee is a vile person for teaching this to unsuspecting sheep. Let's break it all down. Hagee is relying on the Old Testament book of Malachi, as do all tithing whores. Three sets of key verses are posted so we have a deeper and better understanding of what is going on. Let us start with basic hermeneutics. The entire bible is God-breathed and beneficial for us. God says He wrote everything down so that we might not make the same mistakes. Some of the bible is direct instruction as doctrine, for example when Jesus teaches. Other parts are historical narrative, so we understand what happened in the history of Israel. There is a reason why the first and last rule of biblical interpretation is context. We always hear preachers citing Malachi 3 but never hear about Malachi 2, which is the first set of key verses today. In these scriptures we see that the Book of Malachi was not even written to the people! It was written to the priests! Who is threatened with a curse? The priests! God sounds pretty upset with the priests here no? I will spread the dung of your offspring on your face? Why? So, you will know that my covenant with Levi may stand. Hmm, that's interesting so let's put in pin it and move onto the most abused chapter in the bible today, Malachi Chapter 3.
Looking at the second set of scriptures God says you are robbing me. Who is he speaking to? The priests! Yes, the whole nation followed suit but God holds the priests responsible. So God says to bring the tithe back into the storehouse. Tithing teachers like to pretend this means church, but it does not. It was the literal place where the grains were stored to distribute to the Levi tribe. This was the tithing system. The other 11 tribes gave a tenth of their crops which were then distributed by the priests to the Levites for their work in the temple. We are getting closer to the story of what was really going on and for the conclusion we need to turn to Nehemiah and the third set of key scriptures above. The story occurring in Nehemiah was occurring during the time of Malachi the Prophet. Scripture always confirms scripture. We find when we read the Book of Nehemiah that he had to return to the King of Babylon in the 32nd year of King Artaxerxes. Remember, Nehemiah had a good relationship with the king. So, what happened back in Jerusalem while Nehemiah as gone?
On that day they read from the Book of Moses in the hearing of the people. And in it was found written that no Ammonite or Moabite should ever enter the assembly of God, for they did not meet the people of Israel with bread and water, but hired Balaam against them to curse them--yet our God turned the curse into a blessing. As soon as the people heard the law, they separated from Israel all those of foreign descent. Now before this, Eliashib the priest, who was appointed over the chambers of the house of our God, and who was related to Tobiah, prepared for Tobiah a large chamber where they had previously put the grain offering, the frankincense, the vessels, and the tithes of grain, wine, and oil, which were given by commandment to the Levites, singers, and gatekeepers, and the contributions for the priests. While this was taking place, I was not in Jerusalem, for in the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes king of Babylon I went to the king. And after some time I asked leave of the king and came to Jerusalem, and I then discovered the evil that Eliashib had done for Tobiah, preparing for him a chamber in the courts of the house of God. And I was very angry, and I threw all the household furniture of Tobiah out of the chamber. Then I gave orders, and they cleansed the chambers, and I brought back there the vessels of the house of God, with the grain offering and the frankincense. -- Nehemiah 13:1-9 (ESV)