This author's assessment was non-committal on what you should give while getting out of debt. He encouraged Christians trying to get out of debt to pray about their giving and attempt to give something while paying off their debt.
Speaking from my own experience of getting out of debt and still giving, Here is my own personal, committed opinion based on God's Word:
- God's baseline standard of giving begins at the level of 10%. I should give at least at this level while paying off my debts. This may require some extreme changes in my lifestyle spending in order to accomplish what God's Word requires.
- God has a way of blessing the 90% that is remaining if I am obedient with His tithe. I'll probably get out of debt faster if I remain in obedience to His Word. Obedience brings blessing.
- My own personal financial ignorance and bad decision making is not a good enough excuse not to give.
- An emergency on my part does not constitute an emergency on God's part or my church.
Now, I know what you're thinking. You would expect a stewardship pastor to make these statements. Again, speaking from my own personal experience, I was able to give above the level of the tithe and still get out of $25,000 in consumer debt in 18 months. Was it hard? You bet! Did it require some extreme changes in lifestyle? Most definitely!
I don't make these statements to brag on myself, but to brag on God and what He was able to accomplish through me as I was obedient to Him. Test Him and see what He is able to accomplish through you as you tithe and get out of debt at the same time!
"Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me." But you ask, 'How do we rob you?' "In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse - the whole nation of you - because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the Lord Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit," says the Lord Almighty. "Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land," says the Lord Almighty (Malachi 3:8-12).