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Teaching Children to Tithe

"Tithing" is not a concept children generally grasp early in life—though it is very positive when they do. They may occasionally hear about it in the context of church or Christian home life, when we refer to it as “giving back to God.” But because children are concrete thinkers, it may be difficult for them to understand how placing money in an offering envelope will somehow reach God—Someone they can’t physically see or touch.

So how do you clarify the concept of “tithing” for them? How do you demonstrate that as believers, we give God ten percent of what we earn out of obedience and gratefulness for how He’s provided for us? You explain it by making it a simple, consistent part of your week.

Does your child receive a regular allowance? If so, you can begin teaching her the biblical plan for tithing by using the money she earns each week. For example, if you usually give her a dollar, give her ten dimes instead and show her to set aside one of them for God. Using this method will make it easier for her to grasp how to take out ten percent from the whole. Rejoice with her as she puts her offering in the plate at church each Sunday.

One question that is sure to come up from your child is, “Why do we need to tithe?” Explain that the Lord uses the money we give at church to help share His love with other people. One place we teach about God is inside the church building on Sunday mornings and throughout the week.  

In fact, a good idea for teaching your child about the importance of tithing is this: Next time you’re at church together, spend a few minutes looking at things inside the building, asking your child to name some items that require money to purchase or maintain. Point out that God provides for the church through what he offers. Help him identify things used in his classroom, too. Here’s a good start for your list:

  • Chairs and tables

  • Toys, crayons, and construction paper used in his Sunday School classroom

  • Bibles and other study materials

  • Books, DVD’s, CD’s found in the church library

  • Snacks provided during class time

  • Piano, organ, and other musical instruments used during the worship service

  • Cribs and changing tables used in the preschool area

  • Electricity – for lights, air conditioning, heating

  • The church building itself!

Remind your child that everything we have comes from the goodness of God—including our money. When we’re obedient to give back to the Lord, He is faithful to supply all our needs (Phil. 4:19).


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Copyright 2015 In Touch Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved. In Touch grants permission to print for personal use only.

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