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April 4, 2023
Judah and Chelsea Smith Sued for Threatening Non-Tithing Employees
By Anthony Wade
You can't force your employees to give you back a portion of the salary you pay them. Unreal.
The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. - 2Corinthians 9:6-7 (ESV)
Today in mega church, purpose driven apostate church land, tithing is back in court. The ultra-chic and hip Churchome, led by Judah Smith, is being sued by about 100 ex-employees. Judah is listed as the church lead communicator and his wife, Chelsea is named as the lead theologian, which may be the spiritual root of the problem. It seems that the Smith's have demanded that all employees tithe back 10% to Churchome. Now, I know many of you are not flabbergasted at this as this is the general requirement in the majority of churches today. The problem is that the Smith's said the quiet part out loud. In a 2020 staff meeting Judah Smith warned employees about not tithing back 10% to Churchome and that others had been fired for such offenses.
Take a moment to breathe in the sheer stupidity of such a statement. Even if you falsely believe the bible teaches Christians are to tithe, which it does not, you cannot say what Judah Smith said. You can agree to pay someone $100,000 per year for example but only on the condition that they give you back 10% of the gross earnings. By doing so you are falsely agreeing to a salary you do not have to pay in the end as well as stick them for the tax burden. Here is the absurd statement in response to this lawsuit from Churchome:
"The First Amendment protects a church's right to restrict employment to those employees who choose to abide by church teaching. Churchome intends to vigorously defend the rights of all religious institutions to live, teach, and model their faith through their employees," - Churchome
Yeah no. The first amendment does not allow churches to teach things contrary to the law of the land. Can you imagine if IBM demanded all employees give back ten percent of their gross as a requirement for future employment? No to mention the belief is wrong. Despite what Judah's wife might tell him, tithing is not required for New Testament believers. I know. I wrote a book on all of the tithing lies that are out there today. The article above then asks a very provocative question - does the tithe have to go back to Judah, or can the employees decide where to sow their seed? Tithing whores like the Smith's will misapply Malachi to pretend the "storehouse" is the church and therefore their money must come back to their employer. Except the storehouse was an actual storehouse because the tithe was agricultural products, not money.
Now, God does speak to giving for New Testament believers in the key verses today. The first think we see is we are still bound by the universal principle that we reap what we sow. If we are cheap or stingy with our money then we should expect less coming back to us and if we abound in giving, we can expect more, generally. This is not a get rich quick Ponzi scheme but rather God's way for us to check our own hearts because money is not the root of all evil but rather the love of money. Continuing in the key verses we see that each one must give as he has decided in his heart. This is accomplished through prayer and honestly assessing one's budget. I have heard tithing chieftains like Robert Morris teach that you must give the tithe before anything else. Like God is a mob boss. Rent overdue? Too bad, pay me. Going to shut off your heat in February? Too bad, pay me. Your wife needs expensive chemotherapy? Too bad, pay me. Yet the bible says he who does not take of his own family is worse than an unbeliever! As we pray and have God lead us in giving, there are three caveats. The first is we must not give reluctantly. If you love your money that much, God does not want it. God does not want you to give and then have no food next week. Most mega-churches will be just fine without your ten percent. Churchome listed 35 million dollars in assets in 2022. Secondly, we are not to give under compulsion. This is the deal breaker for wannabe wife-theologians. Tithing, by definition, is a compulsory system. These folks are suing because they were being compelled with a threat of unemployment. Once we establish that tithing is compulsory then we know it is unbiblical for the New Testament believer because of the key verses. The final requirement for giving is that it be done cheerfully. If your church honestly preaches the gospel, then you can have no better source to sow your money into. We should be positively giddy to give money to the real cause of the kingdom. Not carnal politics. Not fake vision casting. Not sermonettes that do not preach about the blood, forgiveness of sins, or repentance.
While we are on the subject of cheerful giving this also requires that we are responsible stewards of the money we seek to give. I have heard the flawed notion that we just give and then it is someone else's problem. We have a responsibility to make sure our money is not working against Christ, as it would be if given to Judah Smith. The above linked article admits that Smith paid $100,000 to something called the Hillsong Family, which is an Honorarium scheme. All participating churches had access to the most celebrity pastors to come to their churches as long as they were paid exorbitant Honorarium fees, were lodged at the finest hotels and dined at the top line establishments. This is why and how visiting pastors of fame receive upwards of $100,000 for speaking at a church. If I belonged to a church that participated in this scam, I would not be long for that church but in the interim it is my responsibility to not give that church another dime.
This mandatory theft should not be a surprise. I have seen it at the vast majority of churches today. It is true that some no longer teach tithing and instead appeal to the hearts of the sheep and kudos to them. Other churches use even more despicable means to enforce their tithing policies. I have seen local church strip church memberships from people serving for decades. I have seen them strip memberships from people convalescing in the hospital. Those pastors are hirelings and should be tossed to the curb post haste. The purpose driven church model has falsely taught these thieves that it is their church. It is not. It belongs to God and then the body of Christ. Warrenology has taught them to always be collecting for next expansion, project, or church to come. While that might be spun positively, it is not good to demand more and more from your sheep only to use that money for visions that have little actually do with them. If your current revenue does not match your current vision, then maybe your vision is not from God.
This is a sad and arrogant story but one that is replicated throughout this country every day. There were plenty of solutions too. The Smiths could have allowed employees to tithe where they wanted. They could have pooled their giving and used the money to enhance working conditions, which the church probably is doing on some other level anyway. Judah and Chelsea Smith did not think they had to however. They thought they could bully their employees into accepting this theft by the church of their money. They still think this arrogantly and you can see so from their statement. This is not about the first amendment, the constitution, and most certainly it is not about faith. It is about another godless church thinking they can fleece their own flock and brazenly thumb their nose at everyone when they get caught. They have brought reproach unto the cause of Christ and caused the way to be blasphemed. They should be marked and avoided.
Reverend Anthony Wade - April 3, 2023