Definition of False Teacher: One who presumes
to teach in the Name of the Lord when God has not sent him.
False Teacher - Russell
A Taboo Teacher of Tripe
Paulo writes us:
I've red the paper
on Tithing. To tell you
the truth, I was taken aback, I didn't expect that you believed in
Tithing in this 21st Century, but
you're a servant of God Almighty, so my opinion won't hold here (i've
also red the paper on Opinion on the website). I red a book sometime
in the past, whose author was against Tithing, not that it is bad, but
that it doesn't apply today. If you go through it, there're things there
i find make sense. (Anyway, for the record, I don't claim to be a teacher,
especially, of Divinity). By the way, I keep asking myself: "Why
Tithe? Why not giving one fifth? One third?"
Couldn't that be a
threshold level of giving that God intended us to do. Those were just
my thoughts, but they don't really count now, do
they? "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are My ways
your ways..." (Isaiah 55). …
Paulo then sent us a link to the tithing book he referred to. Paul’s
Hi Paulo, I have a few things to say about tithing and the writing you
sent us: “Should
the Church Teach Tithing? A Theologian’s
Conclusions about a Taboo Doctrine, by Russell Earl Kelly, Ph.D.”
say you find some things that make sense in this book. No doubt in
such a long book an author can make several sensible points, at
least from his perspective and worldview. But in looking over a sampling
of his work, I find Kelly presenting preposterous and audacious suppositions
regarding the Scriptures, making a travesty of God’s counsel
and the truth.
If you proceed any distance at all on the path of
truth, walking in the light with the Lord Jesus Christ, you’ll
soon know for yourself that when one calls himself a theologian,
on every page, that man has nothing at all from God. What Kelly
presents is from man only – the corruption of his own mind
and the thoughts, customs, and diabolical
doctrines learned from
like minds of others.
It is trash, fit only for burning.
Let me give you an example from
his book. In Section 4, chapter 24, Kelly talks about 1 Timothy
5:17 and the elders “worthy
of double honor.” Here is the Scripture and important following
“Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor,
especially those who labor in Word and doctrine. For the Scripture says, ‘You
shall not muzzle the ox treading out grain,’ and, ‘The
laborer is worthy of his reward’” (1 Timothy 5:17-18
Isn’t that clear enough? Those who teach and guide
the believer are worthy of his or her physical support. Other
1 Corinthians 9:7-14 MKJV
(7) Who serves as a soldier at his own wages at any time? Who
plants a vineyard and does not eat of its fruit? Or who feeds
and does not partake of the milk of the flock?
(8) Do I say these things according to man? Or does not the
Law say the same also?
(9) For it is written in the Law of Moses, “You shall not muzzle
an ox threshing grain.” Does God take care for oxen?
(10) Or does He say it altogether for our sakes? It was written
for us, so that he who plows should plow in hope, and so that
threshes in hope should be partaker of his hope.
(11) If we have sown to you spiritual things, is it a great
thing if we shall reap your carnal things?
(12) If others have a share of this authority over you, rather
should not we? But we have not used this authority, but we
endured all things
lest we should hinder the Gospel of Christ.
(13) Do you not know that those who minister about holy things
live of the things of the Temple? And those attending the altar
with the altar.
(14) Even so, the Lord ordained those announcing the Gospel
to live from the Gospel.
Could it be any plainer? Yet here comes
Satan, posing as an angel of light, bringing subtlety of argument
work of God. Kelly flat out refuses the meaning of God’s
words and examples given by the apostle Paul. He both adds
to and takes away
from the Scriptures in order to deny what is plainly said.
Follow this, if you can:
“The context of ‘double honor’ in 5:17 is that of
rebuking wrongdoers in the church, and not ‘salary.’ Verses
1-16 and 19-20 are clearly discussions of discipline. Immediate context
must be the primary determining factor.
5:1 Do not rebuke an
elder [older man] [remember their honor].
5:3-16 Honor widows [honor is greater than rebuke].
5:17-18 Give double honor to elders who labor in the word.
5:19-20 Rebuke [ministering] elders openly that sin.
5:21 Do not be impartial [honor first; rebuke last resort].
5:22 Do not be hasty in discipline [remember their honor].
5:24 God will judge sins.
The disciplinary honor sequence begins with ‘Do
not rebuke an elder’ (v. 1) and ends with ‘rebuke an
elder who sins before all’ (v. 20). The ‘elder’ of
verse one is probably an older church member who is due honor because
of his age and experience.
After discussing the cautious approach to rebuking fellow
church members (vv. 1-2) and special rules for honoring widows
(vv. 3-16), the writer
next takes up the unpleasant, but necessary, rebuke of
spiritual leaders (vv. 19-20). First, however, he reminds
all of the double-honorable position of the person he is about
to discuss (vv.
17-18). While an ordinary elder (older person) is due single ‘honor,’ an
elder who leads in the Word of God is worthy of ‘double
first honor because of his age and the second, or double
honor, because of his ministry in the Word.
To restate the
previous conclusion, since all church members are ‘honorable’ (1
Cor. 12:23-24), they are all worthy of honorable and cautious
rebuke. Older persons are to be rebuked with an honor which
age and experience. However, ruling and teaching elders
are worthy of double ‘honor,’ that is, of a ‘double-cautious
rebuke.’… Because elders are worthy of double
honor, those wishing to rebuke them must be ‘twice’ as
careful and should not rebuke them on a one-to-one basis,
but in front of two or three
witnesses (v. 19)….
The real emphasis of 5:18 is
on the ‘double worthiness’ of
the ox. While it was normally unmuzzled while not working;
it was double-worthy of not being muzzled while working. Thus
the ox ‘plowed in hope’ that
its needs would be met. If Paul had wanted to teach tithing
at this point, he would have quoted Numbers 18:20- 26 and compared
workers to the Levitical system instead of referring to
a grinding ox.
In the context of First Timothy 5:17-18, the ministering
elder’s ‘reward’ is
the ‘double-honor,’ or double-cautious discipline due him! The minister is first worthy of single honor while
because he is a elder Christian, and he is worthy of double
honor while being disciplined because he is a laborer in
How arrogant to write such a long book
(274 pages) complicating what God has simply stated. Atop
every page, Kelly should
have affixed “Man
of Sin” instead of “Ph.D.” to his name.
Anyone following such devils with diplomas can kiss godly
reason and simplicity in Christ
So where to begin with this pretentious mess,
wherein all is error?
“Double honor” has nothing to do with rebuking wrongdoers in the
church. Paul directly states what it’s about in verse 18:
“For the Scripture says, ‘You shall not muzzle the ox treading
out grain,’ and, ‘The laborer is worthy of
his reward’” (1
Timothy 5:18 MKJV).
And Paul isn’t talking about two
kinds of elders in this letter. He’s talking about
those in positions of leadership, not by virtue of age,
but according to God’s work and calling
in that person’s
life. Peter addresses such in his epistle:
1 Peter 5:1-3
(1) So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder
and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a
that is going to be revealed:
(2) shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising
oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God
would have you; not
for shameful gain, but eagerly;
(3) not domineering over those in your charge, but being
examples to the flock.
Verse 20 in 1 Timothy 5, contrary
to Kelly’s claim, says
nothing about rebuking elders:
“Those who sin, rebuke before all, so that the rest also may fear” (1
Timothy 5:20 MKJV).
Paul was speaking to Timothy as a minister
of Christ, regarding how to handle the flock. He wasn’t giving
ordinary believers carte blanche permission to rebuke others, and
certainly not to rebuke elders
(see 5:1). In such cases, Paul gave Timothy (a leader of
the assembly) the following counsel:
“Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or
three witnesses” (1 Timothy 5:19 KJV).
And bringing an accusation
against an elder to a leader in the congregation isn’t the same
as rebuking that elder. The elder isn’t
even present, but it’s up to the leader being
confided in (Timothy) to see whether there are two
or three witnesses,
confirming the matter
in the Lord before proceeding to deal with it.
doesn’t have the faintest clue what he’s
talking about. He doesn’t know the Lord or His
ways. He is anti-Christ.
In a most blatant act of tampering
with the Scriptures, Kelly says that verse 22 is exhorting
not to be hasty
verse has nothing to do with rebuking or disciplining.
In it, Paul is warning
Timothy to not commit himself hastily to another person’s
cause (prayer for healing, for example), without first
consulting the Lord,
lest he bring that person’s judgment from God
“Do not lay hands quickly on anyone, neither be partaker of the
sins of others. Keep yourself pure” (1 Timothy 5:22 MKJV).
The general context of the verses Kelly cites relates to making provision,
as with the directions given about the care of widows. The following
verse precedes the exhortation to support those who labor in the Word:
“If any believing man or believing woman has widows, let them
relieve them, and do not let the church be charged, so that it may relieve
those who are widows indeed” (1 Timothy 5:16 MKJV).
Even when he’s
right, Kelly is so very wrong. It’s true
that “double honor” has nothing to do with ministers
collecting a salary. But that’s because no true man of God
ever collected a salary from the flock, only hirelings do that in
religious arrangements and organizations. Men hire ministers like
any organization in the world, with set agreements and pay, but true
of God serve Him only and receive their provision from Him, whether
He uses the flock to do so or not.
Much of the confusion and strife
over the matter of tithes and offerings comes because the conversation
centers on the illegitimate religious
systems of men – Babylon (read Counterfeit
Christianity and The
True Marks of a Cult).
For those who come out of Babylon
and are joined to the Body of
Christ, tithes and offerings aren’t a formal law of 10%
giving, even as you suggest (“Why
not giving one fifth? One third?”).
The Law of Life in Christ instructs us how to live and how to
honor - whom, when, where, and why.
Paulo, you speak of your
opinion not holding any value. That’s
true, so immerse yourself in the truth that makes free rather
than the pretentious and nonsensical “theological” error
of the “wise and prudent” (Matthew 11:25-26). You
need to read our paper again, the entire thing, very carefully
(in fact, see
our whole Tithes and
Offerings section). The answers are there.
After doing so, if you have other questions, let us know. The
bless His Name!
“But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices
God is well pleased. Obey them that have the rule over you, and
submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give
that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is
unprofitable for you” (Hebrews 13:16-17 KJV).