The church today has been bound by the spirit of religion. Yes, I actually called it a spirit! Religion will honestly be the end of us. While religion is supposedly meant to act as a catalyst in having a deeper and meaningful relationship with God, it hinders us from experiencing the fullness and richness that comes with knowing God.
When I was in campus, I was part of a group that would minister through worship. We were invited to minister at a certain christian event as ushers and the event turned out to be very successful. The event ended, and as people left the premises, we were required to clean up the church thereafter. After our work was done, we waited patiently for the bus to arrive so that we could all board it and head back to school. Unfortunately, the bus took much longer than expected to arrive. The microphones had still not been disconnected by the responsible parties and so we made our way to the front and decided to sing using them. I mean, we all loved singing, the event was over and we had plenty of time before the bus came. So we sang worship songs, and it was amazing.
As we still continued, one woman walked up to us completely angry and shouting as she made gestures telling us to get off the altar where the man of God stands. She asked us why we were defiling the altar; the altar where the man of God usually stands. Her tone and demeanor not at all welcoming. Of course we left the altar, but I couldn’t help but ask myself a couple of questions. Why was she so angry to the point that she raised her voice for all who were in the sanctuary to hear? Why did she have to tell us that that is where the man of God stands? What about the fact that God is present there as well as every other part within that particular church? I couldn’t wrap my head around it. Of course I believe that men of God must be given all the respect and honour due them, but there was just something so different about this particular scenario.
I know of a church in Nairobi, where people bow down in front of a cross that is placed at the front of the sanctuary. According to my observation, one has to bow before the cross any time they passed in front of it. We have all heard of stories and even watched videos and documentaries about queer practices that take place in church. For instance, pastors who step on congregants in order to rid them of ‘demonic strongholds’ in their lives. In another case, another pastor encouraged his congregants to attend church while nude. All this in the name of ‘serving God’.
As I said, religion will be the end of us!
Religion, as seen in man’s perspective, lays emphasis on ‘doing’ instead of believing. In Kenya today, a pastor caught in the act of adultery will form part of the prime time news bulletin yet people, unfortunately, commit adultery all the time. Of course this is not expected since the pastor is required to be God’s representative. We all remember the famous scandal of Kanyari and his accomplices, right? If you may not know about it, please check out his expose here. How people would be duped into giving a portion of their money, specifically sh 310 as ‘seed’ for prosperity. I just have one explanation for this. We have wayward pastors and a lazy body of believers that have not encountered the true power of God thus lack reverence for Him.
Let us face the truth. Most people professing to be christians are too lazy to seek God for themselves and, therefore, depend on ‘men of God’ to be the solution to their problems. Oh and how pastors are having a field day simply because their congregants are naive and lazy. Moreover, we want the church to fit our needs and desires. Churches today call upon the presence of God to come within their midst. For the Holy Spirit to fill their sanctuaries and move so mightily within the congregation. Yet we condemn speaking in tongues; we don’t believe in instant healing or even miracles.
The book of Acts is full of rich acts of God through Jesus’ disciples. I am talking out-of-body experiences, healings, massive evangelism and many other fascinating miracles. Well, all these things take place now but many people, especially believers, believe not in these. Rightfully so, considering all the nonsense we have seen taking place in the name of Jesus. However, I acknowledge the men and women of God who walk rightly, fulfilling their calling and completely anointed by God. Aside from that, let God inform you in deciding your authority i.e. men or women of God you should be submitted to.
1 John 4:1 Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.
I need to finish by mentioning that what God has called us into is faith, not religion. Before someone gives their life to Christ, they have to believe that Jesus is Lord over their life and therefore surrender their life to him. I know for sure that God created Adam and Eve in order to have a relationship with them. They yielded to disobedience, and God had to chase them out of the garden so that they wouldn’t eat the tree of life that would make them eternal sinners. How loving is our God! And so the plan of salvation was completely sealed. Jesus, His only son, the blood offering, sent to die for our reconciliation to our God and father.
It would be too cheap a reason for Jesus to leave his glory and die only for us to go to church every Sunday, help the poor and needy and just do general ‘good deeds’ that the church has stipulated as tickets to heaven. That is why the veil was torn when Jesus died. It meant complete and total access to the Holy of Holies. Why then, do we feel the need to go through ‘men of God’ in order to gain favour with God? There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking counsel from ANOINTED people who have been given TRUE authority by God. But you have complete and total access to God Himself. One of the major reasons Jesus died for us was for reconciliation to God, which meant a restored relationship (a whole blog post all together). In that case, God is interested more in your relationship with Him, than the number of good deeds you can do.
Matthew 7:22-23 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
I believe this particular portion talks about those people who expected to get into heaven judging by the ‘amount of things’ they did in the name of God. But the Word is very clear, ‘I never knew you’. These people will be those that lacked a true and meaningful relationship with God. They did not truly believe that God is Lord over their lives and so deceived themselves as well as others. It is a time to cultivate our relationships with God. Because that is what we are called for. Out of relationship and communion with God comes the ability to move confidently in the mighty power and miraculous acts of God. Out of communion and relationship with God comes the inspiration, direction and revelation to do massive kingdom business. I could go on and on, but I truly appreciate the fact that you made it to the end. But when all is said and done, I need you to think about one important thing.
God has created you for relationship with Him. He loves you very much, and that is why he wants to spend time with you. He will direct your steps and just love on you. And when Jesus said ‘It is finished’, he meant exactly that!
Much love from me,
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