In my continuing inquiry into the supposedly authorized practice of tithing in this era, I’m wondering about a few chunks of funds. Should 10% of any of the following sums be skimmed off the top for the clergy’s coffers?
- A quarter you find on the street?
- Cash received for returning bottles and cans for which you paid a deposit? IRS tax refunds? (This would amount to double taxation, wouldn’t it?)
- Proceeds from loans? From grants?
- Gifts received? Even casual, in-kind ones, such as the gift of a meal from a college meal plan? (The notion of offering steamed broccoli and hummus points up the disparity between Levitical/Jewish tithing and the reality of 20c life.)
- If Christians are really supposed to be giving 10%, are Christian institutions supposed to be giving 10% to something else? I mean, just because they’re on the receiving end of gifts, does that mean they’re not supposed to turn around and re-gift? You know, like orphan homes and Christian colleges and (gulp) churches?