Why I wrote "Church Tithing - The Great Half Truth"

               The reason I wrote this book was simple.   I was challenged and confronted by the leadership in my local church, who strongly viewed tithing as a tenet of faith that was beyond question or investigation.   To be brutally honest, they were determined and uncompromising on the issue.     Not once did I make my views known to others in the church, in fact I kept them very close to my chest.    Only my closest friends knew I was a closet non-tither.      

              I was found out accidentally.   My local Pastor then began what I called the Spanish inquisition of the non-church tither .    Sacked as an elder then re-instated on the proviso I write a paper on my belief's, I was given a chance to defend myself.     My only chance to remain as an elder and a functioning member of my local church which my wife and I  had been a part of for a combined 40 years was to write a  water tight thesis.   I had to convince these men that they were wrong to hold tithing up as such a lofty doctrine worthy to be part of the church's tenets of beliefs.   To this end, the book is not free from emotion, passion and a bit of sarcasm.   I was fighting for my very tenure of membership in a church that had been the very fabric of my early life.   

                The book therefore, covers every angle that tithing advocates take to promote their ideals.   Knowing how they think, for I too was once a tithing fanatic, I tackle them head on, at every point in regard to money, giving and charity in the Scriptures.   I am convinced that anyone who holds tithing as sacrosanct will think differently after their deeply held convictions have being subjected to the blow torch of the Scriptures, logical arguments and historical and extra-Biblical facts laid out in my book.

                However, regardless of my confidence, I actually failed hopelessly in my attempts to win the battle and as such I am no longer a part of the Apostolic Church of Australia.   I did not fail in the arguments, they were never questioned or rebutted by anyone.   In fact, many who proceeded as judges in my case, did not even read my book or only read small portions thereof.   I failed in the politics of trying to change the direction of a movement from a position of no power.   I was like a cabin boy in the bowels of the Titanic, thinking I could convince the captain of the ship to change direction by simply sending him a note.   I was naive.   My book was read and reviewed by only one person in the movement.   I was never able to receive his review as it was classed as property that belonged to the administrative oversight of the church and they refused to hand it over to me.   

               Twelve  years on, I to this day have never received one note, one phone call, one explanation as to why my book was rejected.   Like I said, I failed in the politics, not the substance.   What started off as a theological review, ended up as a character assassination something that is not new but I was naive for not seeing it coming.   I was a defeated man and my reputation trashed.   Afterwards, the emotional damage and grief we went through leaving our church, caused me to place my book in the bottom of the draw and leave it there forever.

                   Now, almost 12 years on, I feel a change of heart.   With no ill will or pain towards my adversaries, I would like my book to see the light of day.   I would like to take up that fight again.   To this end, I wish to make my book available to all and hope and pray that those who do have some power will read it and feel the convictions I first felt as I converted from a tithing fanatic to a tithing antagonist.      

Yours in Christ, Peter Harvey