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Ouagadougou

Tithing Breaks Poverty Cycles?

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Hello everyone and Happy Friday!

I hope you are all doing well.

I've been out of the country and traveling a lot, so I have been away for a good period of time.

I recently read the article below and was shocked by the prophet's claim that tithing can break poverty cycles.


https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900016023/dowry-is-not-the-lords-way-in-kenya-lds-president-nelson-says-tithing-breaks-poverty-cycle.html

"President Nelson also said tithing can break cycles of poverty in poor nations and families."

"'We preach tithing to the poor people of the world because the poor people of the world have had cycles of poverty, generation after generation," he said. "That same poverty continues from one generation to another, until people pay their tithing.'"

IMO, giving up 10% of one's income actually causes more financial struggles for many in the world, especially in countries like Kenya. Moreover, it's important to mention that in Kenya "fourty two percent of its population of 44 million, live below the poverty line."

https://www.unicef.org/kenya/overview_4616.html

The belief that tithing will magically rid Kenya of poverty cycles and solve their financial struggles, IMO, is dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading. Likewise, claiming that tithing will ensure "spiritual blessings" is one thing; however, asserting that poverty will continue until poor people pay their tithing (I think) is ridiculous and very naive about how many people live across the world.

With "spiritual blessings/benefits" set aside (as some might believe), do you think President Nelson's comments were ill-informed or delusional about poor communities and poverty, as they relate directly to their day-to-day financial situations/burdens?

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No. As a missionary in Central America I heard many poor members testify of blessings that came from paying tithing. I have my own testimony based on my personal experiences. Other than anecdotal evidence, I don’t know how one could make that judgment.

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14 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

With "spiritual blessings/benefits" set aside (as some might believe), do you think President Nelson's comments were ill-informed or delusional about poor communities and poverty, as they relate directly to their day-to-day financial situations/burdens?

I think President Nelson's comments were inspired counsel from the Lord's prophet on earth.  

This from Sister Carol McConkie comes to mind

We heed prophetic word even when it may seem unreasonable, inconvenient, and uncomfortable. According to the world’s standards, following the prophet may be unpopular, politically incorrect, or socially unacceptable. But following the prophet is always right. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.”

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/live-according-to-the-words-of-the-prophets?lang=eng

 

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20 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

The belief that tithing will magically rid Kenya of poverty cycles and solve their financial struggles, IMO, is dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading. 

How do you really feel about our prophet?

Most would have judged Jesus as being "dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading" when he told his apostles not to turn the crowd of thousands away, but to feed them all with a few fish and loves of bread...

24 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

however, asserting that poverty will continue until poor people pay their tithing (I think) is ridiculous and very naive about how many people live across the world.

That is not really what he said.

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26 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

The belief that tithing will magically rid Kenya of poverty cycles...
...asserting that poverty will continue until poor people pay their tithing

Meanwhile, Ouagadougou saying that nothing will ever get better until there's a new King of England is just plain silly.  I especially thought it was funny how the OP claimed there was nothing wrong with doing the unicorn dance in pink spandex.

(It's 'make crap up and pretend it's true' day, yes?)

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34 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

The belief that tithing will magically rid Kenya of poverty cycles and solve their financial struggles, IMO, is dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading. Likewise, claiming that tithing will ensure "spiritual blessings" is one thing; however, asserting that poverty will continue until poor people pay their tithing (I think) is ridiculous and very naive about how many people live across the world.

Do you have any suggestions as to what would help these countries and people trapped in poverty? 

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3 minutes ago, snowflake said:

Do you have any suggestions as to what would help these countries and people trapped in poverty? 

For starters, not making it a requirement that people give up 10% of their income...

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12 minutes ago, LoudmouthMormon said:

Meanwhile, Ouagadougou saying that nothing will ever get better until there's a new King of England is just plain silly.  I especially thought it was funny how the OP claimed there was nothing wrong with doing the unicorn dance in pink spandex.

(It's 'make crap up and pretend it's true' day, yes?)

Is there any actual evidence to support President Nelson's claim?  It's a pretty absurd statement, IMO.  

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17 minutes ago, pogi said:

How do you really feel about our prophet?

Most would have judged Jesus as being "dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading" when he told his apostles not to turn the crowd of thousands away, but to feed them all with a few fish and loves of bread...

That is not really what he said.

Read the article:

"We preach tithing to the poor people of the world because the poor people of the world have had cycles of poverty, generation after generation," he said. "That same poverty continues from one generation to another, until people pay their tithing."

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1 minute ago, Ouagadougou said:

For starters, not making it a requirement that people give up 10% of their income...

Realistically, if the tiny percentage of Saints in Kenya stopped paying tithing, it would have zero impact on their national economy. Do you have contact with LDS Kenyans? How do they feel about tithing?

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30 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

No. As a missionary in Central America I heard many poor members testify of blessings that came from paying tithing. I have my own testimony based on my personal experiences. Other than anecdotal evidence, I don’t know how one could make that judgment.

So how can the President Nelson make that judgement/statement if it is based on faith, spiritual blessings, and "anecdotal evidence."  What I am bringing into question is his claim that tithing ends poverty cycles (nothing to do with a testimony or the spiritual side of it). It's like telling people that eating less will help end hunger...and he has NO evidence support his claim.  

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Hmmm. Dowry is paid by the bride's family to ensure their daughter is taken care of. Bride price is paid by the groom's family to demonstrate to the bride's family that they have enough wealth to provide for the bride and any children she may have. Both of these customs are really designed to form family alliances and ultimately protect the bride (although of course, it doesn't always turn out that way). I'm not really sure how to connect these two customs to the paying of tithes.

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4 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

Is there any actual evidence to support President Nelson's claim?  It's a pretty absurd statement, IMO.  

 

 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

(Malachi 3:10)

Evidence other than the words of the Lord?  What more do you need?

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2 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

Realistically, if the tiny percentage of Saints in Kenya stopped paying tithing, it would have zero impact on their national economy. Do you have contact with LDS Kenyans? How do they feel about tithing?

What about the impact on THEIR lives? That additional 10% might make a big impact.  No, I don't have contact, but I have with other people around the world who are poorer or just as poor.  

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Just now, Ouagadougou said:

So how can the President Nelson make that judgement/statement if it is based on faith, spiritual blessings, and "anecdotal evidence."  What I am bringing into question is his claim that tithing ends poverty cycles (nothing to do with a testimony or the spiritual side of it). It's like telling people that eating less will help end hunger...and he has NO evidence support his claim.  

I don't know that there is any empirical evidence to support the claim. I do know that often when people pay tithing out of faith that their attitude towards life changes and they see many blessings where there were few before. Idk. It is a pretty bold statement. 

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2 minutes ago, ksfisher said:

 

 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

(Malachi 3:10)

Evidence other than the words of the Lord?  What more do you need?

That supports the tithing aspect but not the claim that it ends poverty cycles.  

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9 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

What about the impact on THEIR lives? That additional 10% might make a big impact.  No, I don't have contact, but I have with other people around the world who are poorer or just as poor.  

Quote

Of the rapid growth in Chyulu and its ongoing challenges, Byron J. Gilbert, a missionary, reported that in 1992 he and his wife traveled from Nairobi to Chyulu to teach and interview eight candidates for baptism, but 75 came for the discussion. During church, they had to fill the sacrament trays three times. Another missionary, Linda Leavitt, who served in Chyulu for more than a year, said that many who desired to join the Church waited three months before their names could be placed on a waiting list to be taught the missionary discussions. During the three-month period, all attended church and most lived the law of tithing, kept the Word of Wisdom, and fasted. https://www.lds.org/ensign/2001/02/pioneering-in-chyulu-kenya?lang=eng

And now they have a temple. How do you presume to speak for them?

Edited by Bernard Gui
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29 minutes ago, pogi said:

How do you really feel about our prophet?

Most would have judged Jesus as being "dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading" when he told his apostles not to turn the crowd of thousands away, but to feed them all with a few fish and loves of bread...

That is not really what he said.

BTW, I like President Nelson and some of his recent changes, but that doesn't mean I can't be openly against some of his other ideas/statements.  

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2 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

 

Once again "spiritual benefits," but I am focused on his bold claim that it ends poverty cycles.  

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10 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

That supports the tithing aspect but not the claim that it ends poverty cycles.  

The proof will come in being obedient.  Anything else would seem to be sign seeking.  Paul tells us that we walk by faith in this life.  Those who have faith in the Lord and are determined to follow his prophets will see the promised blessings.  Those who wait for proof before acting will not.

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There is some research out there that joining the Church is coorelated with increased economic status.  I don't believe it pinpoints it to tithing as there are many things that likely contribute (emphasis on education and the Church's effort to make it available worldwide, increased stability of the family itself, budgeting for tithing may increase efforts to balance income and expenses, living the word of wisdom eliminates unnecessary expenses for alcohol and tobacco, etc).  It has been a couple of years since I last referenced it, so it may take a bit to find it (assuming I can).

I have seen some financial gurus who suggest as part of a budget, people should include charity.  Iirc, they suggest it is the greater attention paid to both balancing and the value of what money can do for others that helps...one isn't as likely to buy stuff one doesn't need if one is thinking the money could be used for food for those who don't have any, for example.  Their audience is more middle class though, so their advice may not apply.

Edited by Calm
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The prosperity gospel continues to groan and lurch, zombie-like, through LDS and evangelical teachings.

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1 hour ago, Ouagadougou said:


I recently read the article below and was shocked by the prophet's claim that tithing can break poverty cycles.

National results require national faith according to Malachi 3. A small minority can stimulate a nation's faith according to Matthew 13:33, Galatians 5:9. in many applications, a short-term reduction in something leads to its long term increase.

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1 hour ago, Ouagadougou said:

.....................................................  
https://www.unicef.org/kenya/overview_4616.html 

The belief that tithing will magically rid Kenya of poverty cycles and solve their financial struggles, IMO, is dishonest, out of touch with reality, and extremely misleading. Likewise, claiming that tithing will ensure "spiritual blessings" is one thing; however, asserting that poverty will continue until poor people pay their tithing (I think) is ridiculous and very naive about how many people live across the world.

With "spiritual blessings/benefits" set aside (as some might believe), do you think President Nelson's comments were ill-informed or delusional about poor communities and poverty, as they relate directly to their day-to-day financial situations/burdens?

A.  Naturally, if you assume that Dr Nelson is a fool or senile, then all those other notions might seem justified.  Some might think that one of the world's most prominent heart surgeons, who taught at Harvard, etc., is just a phony.  No credit due for merit.  Is that an appropriate way to render judgment?  Especially in view of your ignorance as to what constitutes tithing:  One pays 10% of his "increase."  No increase, no tithing owed.  A third world farmer, just like an American farmer, may make no profit at all in some years (do you know what a P&L statement is?).  Sometimes, lack of rain or too much rain can destroy crops, thus leaving the farmer with heavy debt from purchase of seed, fertilizer, and farm machinery.  Hint:  If outgo exceeds income, it is called a "loss" in the Profit & Loss statement.  That carries some weight with tax collectors.

B.  Another issue is the truth or falsity of the LDS faith.  For you, those who have faith are delusional, ill-informed, and out of touch with reality.  In Alma 32 in the Book of Mormon, the experimental method is discussed as a valid way to find out the truth about faith in God, faith in the Gospel, faith in tithing, etc.  The experimental method is the basis of science and technology.  It is the way in which humans have cleverly advanced themselves since time immemorial.  God has made a promise:  Malachi 3:7-10,

Quote

Return unto me, and I will return unto you, saith the Lord of hosts. But ye said, Wherein shall we return?

Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.

Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.

Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

Your lack of faith distinguishes you as uninformed and unwilling to test God's promise to pour out blessings upon those who willingly pay Him what he already owns anyhow.

C.  Finally, you ignore the standard practice within the LDS Church of providing for the poor and destitute.  The Church has extensive programs to educate, feed, and clothe those in need.  For one so faithless as you, it is all about robbing the poor.  It is you, good buddy, who are out of touch with reality, you who is ill-informed and deeply prejudiced.

Edited by Robert F. Smith
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18 minutes ago, Ouagadougou said:

Once again "spiritual benefits," but I am focused on his bold claim that it ends poverty cycles.  

Ending poverty is a spiritual benefit. The principle of tithing, when properly observed, is intertwined with the other gospel principles for a synergistic effect according to Elder Bednar's recent conference talk.

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