Questions on Tithing and Giving

“Do I tithe based on gross or net income?” Start with regular, consistent giving. This is a matter of the heart. Even 10% is a matter of obedience. We are supposed to give all we have to God, so this is a heart matter – not a law matter.
“What does Jesus say about tithing?” A lot! He doesn’t set a number, because he connects the heart of giving to one’s righteousness. He tells the rich young ruler to give away everything he has to inherit the kingdom of heaven (Luke 18); praises the widow who gave her last two cents (Mark 12:41-44); and teaches to pay both taxes and tithe as good members of society (Matthew 17 & 22). Jesus wants us to get past the desire for money and believe in God’s ability to provide for our needs.
“What if I can’t afford tithing?” You can. Everyone starts somewhere. To say “I can’t give 10% so I can’t give at all or give $20 when I have it” is just not true. There is probably one thing in your life you can live without so that you can offer your tithe to God.
“Can I give my time instead?” We are called to give of both our time and our resources as well as being present and witnessing to our faith in all aspects of our daily lives. These are the words we say when we take part in the celebration of baptism and joining the church: “…[we] give of our prayers, our presence, our gifts, our service, and our witness.” United Methodist Hymnal
“What if I give to charities and other organizations?” That’s wonderful! You should! But those organizations are not churches – they are charities. We are called to give to both, because those organizations do not do the same work in communities churches do.