Biafra: The Tithes and the Taunted Rejoicing
Ikechukwu Enyiagu writes for Radio Biafra Editorial Board in response to reactions to the Editorial of 6 May 2013
This piece takes a closer look at the principle of God’s demand to tithing in the church; His view, intention and direction for its full utilization. It equally intends to highlight the place of the tither, who is qualified to tithe, who is qualified to receive the tithes, the right church and altar to tithe and the place of the church in the symbiotic tithing commitments.
Suffice it to say that the word, tithe, and its active implementation have become both the question and the trap of our present church setting. Although I’m well informed to know that any dot in the process and principle of tithing which tends to give a different, broader or even clearly opposing view, meaning and explanation to what has been obtainable to date is bound to trigger the demons in the many so-called holy men of our today’s worship centers.
I will, nevertheless, emphasize that, since my intention and presentation is totally focused on defining the right tithing and explaining its right interpretation, I could care less what wishes in the guise of prayers may be directed against me by the many groups of murderous cabal in religious cloaks all over what their greed has been made a prison to men and women born in and destined for freedom and peace.
Your hypocritical humility and false worship is your doom! Opposition derives life from opposing and death by opposing the truth, even so shall those who have unjustifiably killed by the sword of the flesh or of the spirit not exclaim when their just reward finds an expression in their lives “What have I done wrong?” Having said these, I hereby make my honest, unbiased and true case.
As can be generally agreed, tithe and tithing are exclusive between the worshiper and Jehovah who is worshiped. The first ever record of the type of tithing popularly mentioned and used in different churches today was in Genesis chapter 14 between Abram and Melchizedek the priest. Of course Melchizedek did not come by himself but represented a priestly order of God unto His people.
In Israel’s early tithing times, over 22% was the total of all the tithes they individually paid. The Levites then tithed by bringing the 10% into the storehouse. It will be noted that the tithe came from Abram to the king of Salem after he had blessed him for having fought the enemy and won the freedom of his people, this time, Lot and his family.
Going further, we can see that although Abram was called, his new name, which carries the seed of destiny, had not been given him when he forsook his safety to redeem his family. One thing we can establish from this is the fact that God supported Abram’s all-out pursuit to redeem his people and to recover all that belonged to them; and for this, the king of God most high invoked a far greater blessing upon him. Then Abram gave him the tenth of all.
In Malachi chapter 3, verse 8 through to verse 12, God Himself indicted His children for failing to provide for meat in His house. He went further to pronounce blessings upon whosoever shall bring his tithe to the right place. We can see here that God only intended that the principle of tithing be applied on the altar where those (priests or Levites) who have submitted themselves totally to the works of freedom, blessing and protection of His people serve. In other words, tithing is for the liberation of His people. The question here, then, should be, “Who are His people?”
Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah, one of the Jewish men who were carried into captivity to the Persian Empire, was privileged to become the cup bearer to Artaxerxes, king of Persia. But just like Moses who found himself a prince of Egypt but was daily faced with the brutality meted out against his people from the very throne and kingdom he represented decided to forsake everything else for the purpose of setting his people free, Nehemiah could not find peace within the palace because the peace of his people was lost and the house of their God, Jerusalem, was in ruins. He prayed to God, risked his life and went to the king to ask that he be allowed to return to his land so that he can organize, with the king’s permission, to rebuild the house of their. Because his passion was towards his God and his people, he gained favor with the king and was sent with every right to ‘rebuild Jerusalem.’ Esther did the same thing and while she was a queen to the Persian king Ahasuerus.
In this we can see that, for that man who truly loves God, his primary assignment must always be toward the freedom, blessing and protection of His family no matter how politically or religiously elevated.
We have churches today with different denominations, but we can all agree that the first church started and starts with a man, then his family and then other families with common cause – until he becomes a nation just as Jacob became Israel. Abraham was the first successful church seed and he paid tithe first to that priest of God who did not only recognize Abram’s divine obedience in going after those who have sought to enslave his people but who stood among other kings and priests to declare Abram blessed for his services to his family, God’s church. From this we know that every leader’s primary duty is to his people. Only love can make a man truly serve his people and it’s ONLY in such selfless service and total self-abandonment can God use a man to build and sustain his church.
Israel was invaded and captives and slaves were made of God’s people. In the land of their captors to where they were bound as slaves, they were repeatedly taunted to sing to them some of their songs of worship to Jehovah. It would be pertinent to state here that, like the scattered Igbo of today, most of whom fear the ruins of our homeland and have therefore been compelled into slavery in all strange lands, they were in great pain and often beaten. In other words, they were both in pains of slavery and in shame and regret for having offended their God who then punished them with the burden of Persia. The Psalmist correctly described the response of these brave children of God. In response to request for Zion songs, they wondered at their tormentors, the wicked invaders, “How can we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?” they asked. The thought of Zion’s ruins robbed them of every joy; not even Nehemiah the elevated palace slave could sing the song of God in the land of their taskmasters because songs directed to God must always come from merry hearts.
In other words, as long as their family is scattered, in fear and continually held down, God would not accept their praise…until they seek for the freedom of the house of God entrusted to them. No wonder Jesus could no longer bear the hypocrisy of the leaders of the then church when he openly rebuked them in Matthew chapter 23:23 saying, “Woe unto you, Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithes of mint and anise and cumin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy and faith: these you should have done, and not to leave the other undone. At other time, he explained that to love your neighbor as yourself is as great a commandment as to love God with one’s all. In fact, he finalized by saying that the law and the prophets were hinged only on the two laws and that none is complete without the other. In this we can clearly see that whoever does not care for my welfare and that of my people does not love God and cannot represent him before me or my people, be it in governments or churches.
In Nigeria today, there are churches of different spirits, beliefs, colors and shades. They thrive by the burden of tithing upon the true church while they neglect the second greatest commandment. They are quick to invoke God’s wrath against non-tithers but they insist it is their choice whether or not to love them truly and whether or not they should consider matters of judgment, mercy and faith as Bible truths. Therefore you see them taxing and psychically extorting from the burdened and ignorant Igbo remnants every penny they can get in the name of tithing. It is said that religion is the opium of the people. These men abhor drunkards and smokers but the intoxicant they are steadily stuffing people up with has proven to be more toxic than the deadliest drug abuse.
All you have to do to immediately notice their hypocrisy is to look at the country generally and then to look at the lives of individuals who make up the church. After years that they have preached their gospel, not once have they spoken on the abominations carried out against the Igbo with whom they claim to be brothers. True to true worshipers, the Igbo, in trying to reach out to God have become prey to these men and women of the satanic horde. Their use of the tithe no longer gathers brothers together, if indeed we are brothers. If anything, it tends to back up Nigeria’s political enslavement of the Igbo with spiritual shackles, and the enslavement of themselves because oji mmadu na –ala ji onwe ya.
Instead of preaching peace, freedom, restoration, blessing and protection to the remnants of the children of Jerusalem whom they gathered with their fathers to exterminate, they preach tithe and One-Nigerianism because only in these have they prospered in their false humility and display of love for God without having to bother about the ruins in Zion, the peace-center of every family. To them, Zion is their stomach and their vain glory is the peace, and when you approach them, they are often quick to claim that the Gospel is free but not cheap. Whatever they mean by that, it could not have come from the Holy Spirit who drives every true church towards right results.
A simple discernment will reveal the bigotry and ethnic excesses with which they pretend to be priests in the order of Melchizedek and, therefore, expect and lay claims to their rights of receiving tithes in God’s name.
I look at my people and I feel God’s pity towards them and wrath against their leaders, whether they be geographically, politically or religiously chosen. Is it far-to-seek, then, that the Igbo are now waking up to the truth? Is it a wonder that God has sanctioned the destruction of Nigeria? Why does anyone wonder why so much abomination now finds every acceptable expression in the Bishops, Pastors Prophets and marriages in our churches all over Nigeria today? We will not sing our Lord’s song in a strange land no matter how much we are taunted and cajoled, Biafra, our Jerusalem, remains our only home where we will experience peace, freedom, restoration, blessing and protection.
This is the confession of every man whose life is by his commitment to his family, the church of God. This is the life of every Igbo who has caught the fire which drove Nehemiah, Moses, Joshua, David, and Daniel, Joseph the husband of Mary, Jesus and his apostles through their successful ministries.
We have caught the fire too and we have sworn to rebuild the temple and to bring our people back from all the strange to where they have been led captives. We will rebuild Biafra so that God will again live in our midst. Every Igbo/Biafran owes himself and God the duty of paying his tithe to our church and God’s family, Biafra. We will pay out tithes and we will diligently observe the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy and faith. Every Igbo is hereby encouraged to become wise again, to pay his tithe and offering to the church of our God which is Biafra. The altar which does not yield the fruits of tithing for judgment, mercy and faith is the altar where God does not look upon.
The altar of God for every Igbo/Biafra today and always is Biafra and everything which truly upholds it. Let us therefore take a stand and a vow today to rebuild our Zion and our Jerusalem. Let us rebuild Biafra, the only true church where Igbo/Biafran tithes will yield the fruits of loving God and man as ourselves. That has always been the culture and life of the Igbo the world over.
I believe and I know that you have seen the truth and I believe that your tithe, which is the tenth of all your income, will henceforth be paid to where it counts; that it will henceforth be righteously directed to the rebuilding of Biafra.
When they request your tithes in the many so-called churches in Nigeria who thrive in the enslavement of the Igbo/Biafra and who would rather talk money all their hypocritical lives than be concerned with what has been and is continually being done against your people by both the Nigerian government and Nigerians, tell them that you have come of age and that your right altar to tithe is on the altar of Biafra for her peace.
If you lead yourself to believe that your security is in your tithe in those churches, you can immediately understand your false hopes by the deaths of hundreds of Igbo worshippers targeted and killed by One-Nigerianism and anti-Igbo/Biafran spirit as they worship in their various churches. But if you have come of age and truly want to become the Abram, Nehemiah, Moses, Joshua, David and Jesus of our destiny as a people and if you want to truly become an apostle of Jesus Christ, our example, then make haste and pay in your tithes and offer your offerings to the Biafran cause today through the Nehemiac money-raising structures set by Billie Human Rights Initiatives under the supervision or the Igbo Council of Elders who have come to realize that true victorious life is a life lived for the peace, freedom, restoration, blessing and protection of the remnants of the indigenous people of Biafra as we rebuild our Jerusalem and free ourselves from the abomination that is Nigeria. Remember: Your peace is tied to the peace in your Jerusalem.