“Give to the LORD, O families of the peoples, Give to the LORD glory and strength. Give to the LORD the glory due His name; Bring an offering, and come into His courts.” (Psa 96:7-8 NKJ)
“The bringing of tithes and offerings into God’s house is a solemn act of thanksgiving to almighty God. It is the duty of the minister to cultivate the grace of biblical giving in the members of the church by calling their attention to the scriptural admonition that everyone should give as the Lord has prospered him.”- From the RCUS Directory of Worship
Tithes and offerings are an appropriate part of the worship of the church. In the Old Testament, Israel was commanded to bring her tithes and offerings together with her sacrifices to offer them at the Temple. Here is a representative passage:
“There you shall take your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, your tithes, the heave offerings of your hand, your vowed offerings, your freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks. And there you shall eat before the LORD your God, and you shall rejoice in all to which you have put your hand, you and your households, in which the LORD your God has blessed you. (Deu 12:6-7 NKJ)
God includes the tithe as part of their public worship, part of everything they did as an act of thanksgiving to God. In the tithe we are publicly reminded that our worship touches every aspect of our lives and that we owe all that we have to God. Paul also calls for the offerings of the church to be collected on the first day of the week, when the church gathered together for worship, in 1 Cor. 16:2. We do not have a temple or a house of the Lord to bring our offering to; we have a worship service; the time marked out between the salutation and benediction as the meeting place of God and His people. The space in which we worship becomes God’s House when the invocation is pronounced. As in the Old Testament Israel brought her offerings to the place God appointed, so in the New Testament we bring that offering to the time marked out as the worship of God.
The public collection of the offering is not directed toward the worthiness of the minister or the worthiness of the church, but to the worthiness of God. Our offering, therefore, is a testimony of our trust and faith in God, our thankfulness for all He has done for us, and our recognition that all we have comes from Him. We are to give as the Lord has prospered us; the absolute size of our offering or its size compared to that of others is not relevant. What is relevant is that we recognize God’s graciousness to us, and as He has blessed us temporally, so we return proportionally our offerings back to Him.