THE INSUFFICIENCY OF THE CROSS ?
THE INSUFFICIENCY OF THE CROSS ? The New Testament is clear about this matter of “giving”. It is a matter of the heart. Paul tells us time and again, that we are to give as the Lord [through the Holy Spirit], leads us. Time and again leaders entice us with promises of prosperity, and more importantly, God’s favor in the tithe. “God will fix anything in your life if you faithfully tithe”! This is what we are told. The Body, and Blood of Jesus have become irrelevant to our privilege in the work of Christ. There is ANOTHER path to God’s favor [they say]——–it’s called THE TITHE. With it; the sacrifice of the cross becomes second fiddle. Our redemption is “incomplete” without the tithe [they say]!! We are indeed redeemed to that point where our financial need comes into play——–then our Great Redeemer becomes weak, and inadequate to save. Who will save us from our financial despair?————“THE LAW”———“THE LAW WILL SAVE US” in the inadequacy of Christ’s Blood [they say]. If you will only tithe———-then “blessings” are just beyond the next bend in the road [they say]. Your salvation is COMPLETED when you add the TITHE to your faith [they say]. YEAH—-THAT’S THE TICKET!! Faith carries us just so far——-but the “law” catapults us to the finish line [they suggest]!! Such a deal?
But the pastor has taken us to the Seventh Chapter of Hebrews, and proven conclusively that Abraham TITHED to Melchizedek, and Abraham lived PRIOR TO the law, and Melchedzedek was a type, and foreshadow of Christ. Doesn’t this place God’s seal of approval to this matter? Well, let’s see what the message of Hebrew’s Seven is all about.
7:1 For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him;
2 To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace;
3 Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.
4 Now consider how great this man was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.
5 And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham:
6 But he whose descent is not counted from them received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him that had the promises.
7 And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better.
8 And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth.
9 And as I may so say, Levi also, who receiveth tithes, payed tithes in Abraham.
10 For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchizedek met him.
11 If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchizedek, and not be called after the order of Aaron?
12 For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.
13 For he of whom these things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance at the altar.
14 For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood.
15 And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchizedek there ariseth another priest,
16 Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.
17 For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.
18 For there is verily a disannulling of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof.
19 For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.
20 And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest:
21(For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek:)
22 By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament.
23 And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death:
24 But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.
25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;
27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.
28 For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.
To begin with; we are introduced to TWO characters in this illustration. They are both actual historical characters. They are both type, and foreshadow of things to come.
- The first character is an ancient HIGH PRIEST. He rules from a place called Salem [meaning “peace”]. Salem is located at a high location [later to be called Jerusalem]. This man’s name is Melchizedek. He is a portrait in type of Christ our HIGH PRIEST.
- The second character is Abraham. He is our portrait type of MANKIND. He precedes the Law and Moses in history. Now the story begins;
Abraham has just returned from a battle in which he slaughtered several local kings. He has rescued his nephew LOT, who had been captured by those kings. He also comes with all the people that had been taken with Lot, and all the BOOTY OF WAR. This Melchizedek descends from his throne in Salem, and meets Abraham in the valley below. Abraham knows that the KING OF SALEM has come to extract a gift [tithe], and Abraham respectfully complies. Now HERE is where clarity comes to this matter of the tithe. Abraham gives tithe of the booty of war. In exchange; the king of Salem [King of Peace], gives BREAD AND WINE to Abraham. Can you see what has happened here? Abraham gives tithe ——the representation of THE LAW; and Melchizedek gives to Abraham——–BREAD AND WINE, the very symbol of the New Testament in Christ’s body and blood. This entire story is a portrait of the exchange made at the cross. It was the exchange of the system of law——-for that of GRACE. The story goes on to say; “and the LESS [Abraham] was blessed of the GREATER” [the King of Salem]– [verse 7]. Do you see in this typology, that grace is more excellent than law, and that Melchedzedek [Christ] left his home in Salem [heaven], and descended to the valley below [earth], and met with Abraham [mankind], and received the TITHE [law] unto himself, and blessed Abraham with BREAD AND WINE [the testament in Christ’s body, and blood]——and Abraham [the lesser---the law] received of Melchedzedek [the greater----the New Covenant in grace] ? This is the message of the ENTIRE BOOK OF HEBREWS. The writer warns the Hebrew Church to SHUN THE LAW, for in returning to the things of the LAW, one presents himself EXEMPT from the benefits of GRACE—–and there IS NO REMEDY to those who would try to blend law and grace.
Heb 6:4-64 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,
5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,
6 If they shall fall away [back to the LAW], to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame
When CHRIST OUR PASSOVER cried out these words: “ IT IS FINISHED”; the VEIL that separated God and man, was forever destroyed. Three and one half years into Christ’s ministry——-HE CONFIRMED THE COVENANT WITH MANY, AND CAUSED THE SACRIFICE AND OBLATION FOR SIN TO CEASE [Dan.9'27] ! There is no longer a path to God’s blessing, other than that trail of blood that flows from the Cross. I beseech you as siblings in Christ, to cease and desist from the coercion in the tithe. It is reprehensible that you should believe that the TITHE survived the cross. Christ paid the tithe for the entirety of human kind. Now our offerings are made in the NEW Holy of Holies———the heart of the elect. Our gifts, and giving are far superior to that gift given by Abraham. Our gifts are motivated in purity, and recompensed in joy.. Forsake the tithe, and reject the coercion to tithe. If for no other reason—- in your heart, you know it does not work!