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On Tithing, Stewardship, And The Cooperative Program

WHEREAS, Biblical stewardship is a generous response of loving obedience that constitutes an essential part of our worship of God (2 Corinthians 9:6–7); and

WHEREAS, Tithing predates the Law of Moses (Genesis 14:20; 28:22; Hebrews 7:2) and is affirmed in the Old Testament (Numbers 18: 21–24) as well as in the New Testament (Luke 11:42); and

WHEREAS, The Scripture equates failure to tithe with robbing God (Malachi 3:8); and

WHEREAS, Christ affirmed the tithe (Matthew 23:23); and

WHEREAS, Proportional giving of at least a tithe is expected by God throughout Scripture (Numbers 18:21–24; 1 Corinthians 16:1–2; Hebrews 7:2); and

WHEREAS, Tithing is essential for Kingdom work through the local church and ministries around the world (1 Corinthians 9:13–14); and

WHEREAS, According to the Great Commission Task Force Report, Southern Baptists give just 2.5 percent of their annual income to the local church, demonstrating the need for Southern Baptists to teach and faithfully obey the biblical command to tithe; and

WHEREAS, The current economic climate and other factors have resulted in financial challenges for many of our churches and mission entities; and

WHEREAS, Faithful stewardship is a privilege and an honor for all Christians; and

WHEREAS, The Cooperative Program is funded solely by tithes, offerings, and gifts through the churches; and

WHEREAS, Cooperative Program giving from the churches has declined significantly from $548 million in 2007–2008 to $488 million in 2010–2011, reducing our support of missions and ministries by $60 million; and

WHEREAS, Frank S. Page, president of the SBC Executive Committee, has challenged Southern Baptist churches to increase their Cooperative Program giving by at least 1 percent; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Houston, Texas, June 11–12, 2013, exhort all Southern Baptists to tithe cheerfully and give sacrificially as good stewards of God’s blessings to their local churches; and be it further

RESOLVED, That Southern Baptists and Southern Baptist churches evaluate the faithfulness of their stewardship to financially support missionaries and ministries at home and abroad through the Cooperative Program and Great Commission Giving; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we commend those who tithe faithfully in loving obedience to God.