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Stealing in the name of Jesus?

Christianity which literally means “Christ likeness” was established in the 1st century by disciples of Jesus mainly Peter, Matthew, James and John. Their immediate focus or should I say mission was to propagate the gospel (good news) across all nations…but these days, things have changed.

Now let us time travel all the way back to recent times; the Church has all of a sudden become a lucrative business in some quarters. With tax free money from offerings, donations from philanthropists, pledges, tithes and offerings,it is very easy for someone who is amoral in nature to get carried away by the amount of money coming in. This brings me to the subject matter “Stealing in the name of Jesus”.

Who was Jesus by the way? The bible says “He went about doing good, healing the sick and raising the dead”. I am not here to preach but to point out that the agenda of some present day pastors and preachers has obviously shifted from the foundation of their calling. There is more focus on the contents of people`s wallets, purses and bank accounts and how relinquishing their contents will make the bearers more prosperous. These teachings have been misconstrued and purported for selfish interests with no sense of altruism by some present day “Prosperity preachers”.

Over time, the Church has been invaded by corrupt, greedy money conscious people. There are still a whole lot of good hearted, dedicated preachers out there who live up to their God ordained expectations(or at least try to),but as the saying goes, “A few rotten eggs spoil the bunch”. How do you go about preaching to people out there when all they see mainly are the flashy typed, money focused pastors? Some of them say “My God is not a poor God” which I will agree to (as a matter of personal opinion), but he does not take money from innocent hardworking people does he?

Why would a preacher or pastor drive around in a luxury car, security convoy or have an aeroplane? Why should a preacher or pastor be so flashy as to boast of their Armani suits, Mauri shoes and Rolex Wristwatches? Why should a preacher get paid a ridiculously high salary? Why should a preacher or pastor use the Church credit card to purchase personal effects? Why should a “Man of God” be arraigned for tax evasion? The list of questions goes on and on (and I am sure you have some yourself).If the pastor or preacher has a second income then that is fine, but when everyone knows that nothing else comes in, the question is who funds these flamboyant lifestyle then?

Take Nigerian in Africa as an example, we have churches springing up in every nook and cranny, meters apart. I once counted 10 churches on one single street and could not help but wonder what the heck was going on? Most of these churches do not preach about righteousness, holiness and other core principles on which the religion was founded on but rather on the principle of the sower, the Shunamite woman, and chapters from Malachi, Melchizedek, and principles of prosperity (which will involve you dipping into that wallet or purse). They will hardly mention passages like the widows mite, and some other bible passages that involve giving what you can and not ruining your finances in the process. These types of preaching are quite predominant in countries with widespread poverty, economic and social problems hence the need for supernatural interference based on Christian belief.

When you start giving money to your church and get to the point where you cannot provide for your family or take care of your daily needs, the same bible which talks about giving says you are an infidel 1Timothy 5:8. Now why would any preacher ask you to give money which you cannot afford? The whole prosperity promotion agenda has obviously turned into a marketing strategy! Quite similar to buy one get one free, Gala Bingo, 888 or any other gambling operator! Jesus spoke about the principles of giving but never hammered on it, He was not into enriching himself out of the then church’s fund, he was not flashy because the disciples borrowed a donkey when he entered Jerusalem on palm Sunday in Matthew 21 (if he was flashy, he would have bought a horse and chariot or something like that).

I have a message for all those self-enriching pastors, general overseers, reverends (ironically named) etc out there, PRACTICE WHAT CHRIST PREACHED! Instead of using the money got from offerings, tithes and pledges to feed the hungry, support the widows, provide for the jobless, tend to the sick, shelter for the homeless, just like the bible says, you go around driving the latest flashy cars, adorning the “Blings” and living the celebrity lifestyle! Where is the Christlike humility in that?

A word of advice for the “givers” Matt 10:16 “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves. Become therefore wise as the serpents and guileless as the sheep.” We have to be aware of these kinds of preachers and avoid them like a plague since all they do is usurp money off gullible people to enrich themselves. They focus more on prosperity than the basic principles of the bible which is “Love your neighbour as yourself”. Be choosy when it comes to where you give your money (if you want to give), if you sow seeds on rocky terrain, it will wither away.

It is about time to name and shame all those who enrich themselves “in the name of Jesus”, those who live the lifestyle that they normally cannot afford by digging into God`s pocket, those who do not live up to the basic principles of Christianity but treat their church members like cattle” Fatten them and feed off them”. Be not deceived God is not mocked, whatsoever a man sows, that will he reap. Change your ways before it`s too late! If God does not do anything for now, the Law eventually will.

As usual, your opinions on these matters are golden. Enjoy the video attached, a short documentary showing the moral decadence of some pastors and comment as you wish.