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Why do we pay tithing?

Paying tithing is a sacred privilege. When we pay tithing we show gratitude for all that God has given us and return to Him a portion of what we have received. Tithing is used to build temples and meetinghouses, translate and publish the scriptures, do missionary and family history work, and build God’s kingdom on earth in other ways.

Prepare yourself spiritually

What scriptures and other resources will help the young men understand why we pay tithing?

Malachi 3:8–10; 3 Nephi 24:8–10; D&C 64:23 (Promised blessings of tithing)

D&C 119 (The law of tithing revealed)

David A. Bednar, “The Windows of Heaven,Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2013

Henry B. Eyring, “The Blessings of Tithing,” Liahona, June 2011, 4–5

Carl B. Pratt, “The Lord’s Richest Blessings,” Ensign and Liahona, May 2011, 101–3

Tithing,” True to the Faith (2004), 180–82

Tithes and Offerings,” For the Strength of Youth (2011), 38–39

Let the young men lead

A member of the quorum presidency (or an assistant to the bishop in the priests quorum) conducts the quorum meeting. He leads the young men in counseling together about quorum business, teaches them their priesthood duties (from the scriptures and the Duty to God book), encourages them to share their experiences fulfilling their duty to God, and invites an adviser or other quorum member to teach a gospel lesson. He could prepare by filling out a quorum meeting agenda during a presidency meeting.

Begin the learning experience

Choose from these ideas or think of your own to review last week’s lesson and introduce this week’s lesson:

  • Write the question from last week’s lesson title on the board, and ask if one of the young men can answer the question using what he learned last week.
  • Write on the board, “Why do you pay tithing?” Invite the young men to imagine that a friend of another faith asks them this question. How would they respond? Encourage them to share experiences they or their family has had related to tithing.

Learn together

Each of the activities below will help the young men understand the law of tithing. Following the inspiration of the Spirit, select one or more that will work best for your quorum:

  • Ask the young men to search Malachi 3:8–10 and D&C 64:23 and share the promises made to tithe payers. Ask the young men to find out what the Lord expects us to pay in tithes by reading D&C 119 (explain that “interest” is our annual “income”). Hand out tithing receipts and let the young men explain to each other how to use them. Share how you have been blessed for paying tithing.
  • Draw three columns on the chalkboard with the following headings: Blessings, How Funds Are Used, and Attitude. Divide the quorum into small groups, and assign each group one of the topics to research in For the Strength of Youth: “Tithes and Offerings.” Ask them to write what they find in the appropriate column on the board. Invite a few of them to share their testimonies of the law of tithing.
  • Read, show, or tell the story about Elder Pratt’s grandfather from “The Lord’s Richest Blessings.” Hand out copies of the talk to the young men, and ask them to find one of the lessons Elder Pratt learned from his grandfather and share it with the quorum. Invite the young men to tell of a time when the payment of tithing has blessed them or their family (or share an experience of your own).
  • Divide the quorum into two groups. Ask one group to read President Henry B. Eyring’s article “The Blessings of Tithing,” and ask the other group to read paragraphs 2–13 of Elder David A. Bednar’s talk “The Windows of Heaven.” Ask each group to make a list of the blessings we receive when we pay tithing, and then write the blessings on the board. Invite the young men to share blessings that have come to them and their families from paying tithing. Ask them how living the law of tithing will help their future marriages and families. 

Ask the young men to share what they learned today. Do they understand why we pay tithing? What feelings or impressions do they have? Do they have any additional questions? Would it be worthwhile to spend more time on this doctrine?

Invite to act

The young man who is conducting concludes the meeting. He could:

  • Share why paying tithing is an important part of his life.
  • Challenge quorum members to always pay tithing.