Even Benny Hinn now reluctantly admits that he has taken the preaching of the prosperity gospel to the extreme, when he said:
“We get attacked for preaching prosperity, well it’s in the Bible, but I think some have gone to the extreme with it sadly, and it’s not God’s word what is taught, and I think I’m as guilty as others.”
Benny Hinn now realizes that some of the things he learned from preachers, when he was growing up, aren’t biblical and the popular interpretation of the prosperity gospel — the teaching that believers have a right to the blessings of health and wealth and that they can obtain these blessings through positive confessions of faith, and the “sowing of seeds” through the faithful payments of tithes and offerings — is one of those things.
Yes, Benny Hinn, you deceived millions of Christians all over the world and you took advantage of many of them!
The Bible teaches that we are free from the guilt and bondage of the Old Testament Law of Tithing! There has never been such requirement for the New Testament believer! The decision making in how we handle our giving should come from being led by what God tells us individually through the Holy Spirit. As believers in Jesus Christ, we ought to be controlled by His Spirit and God’s Word in regard to how much money we should give, and through His Word. No church or televangelist should ever make us feel guilty about the amount of money we give or try to control it!
The apostle Paul, who himself at one point was living according to the Old Testament law of tithing, now writes, after being born-again, in the New Testament:
“You must each make up your own mind as to how much you should give. Don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. For God loves the person who gives cheerfully. And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. As the Scriptures say, “Godly people give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will never be forgotten.” 2. Corinthians 9:7-11 NLT
In other words, whether you are able to give 5% of your income, or at other times you may be able to give 20, 30, or even 100%, the point is that you are giving the appropriate amount of money the Holy Spirit directs you to give and God will bless you for doing so.
This is how Paul instructed the Christians in Jerusalem to give each week:
“On every Lord’s Day, each of you should put aside some amount of money in relation to what you have earned and save it for this offering.” 1. Corinthians 16:2 NLT
When it comes to who to give money to, we first and foremost, we need to take care of our own family, making sure they have food, clothing, and shelter. If we don’t, according to the Bible, we are “worse than an unbeliever.” (See 1. Timothy 5:8)
As a believer, we each have a duty to support the church we join, which pays for the pastor, the elders, evangelists, teachers and other ministry services.
“Elders who do their work well should be paid well, especially those who work hard at both preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, “Do not keep an ox from eating as it treads out the grain.” And in another place, “Those who work deserve their pay!” 1. Timothy 5:17-18 NLT
“Those who are taught the word of God should help their teachers by paying them.” Galatians 6:6 NLT
We should also support missions financially as stated in Romans 15:25-27, and we need to be willing to help a brother or sister in need.
“Suppose you see a brother or sister who needs food or clothing, and you say, “Well, good-bye and God bless you; stay warm and eat well” — but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do?” James 2:15-16 NLT