Source: God has done more in my life in a few years praying alone, than going to ‘church’ for decades!
God has done more in my life in a few years praying alone, than going to ‘church’ for decades!
Indeed, the vast majority of those who got in touch with me concurred that the Christian church of today had become nothing but a huge scandalous scam and fraud – with virtually very little, or nothing at all, do with the teachings of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and His Apostles (who penned the Epistles we refer to as the Holy Bible).
These works, which we consider divinely-inspired scripture, are the basis of our faith – whose teachings, recommendations and even commandments are what governs the nature, shape and course of the body of Christ, or Church.
Yet, it is shocking how – in just a short space of 300 years after the crucifixion, death, resurrection and ascendancy of Jesus Christ – the faith quickly became a disgraceful sham of its former self, willfully distorted and bastardized for the sake of a few power and wealth-greedy people’s own self-serving agendas.
This was after the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great issued his first Council of Nicaea in AD 325 – whereby, what was then merely a loose grouping of followers and believers of Jesus, as their Messiah – was institutionalized and turned into the formal power structures that we still witness today (1,698 years later).
From then onwards, what is widely regarded as the ‘Church’ was organized around issues of power – with organizational structures that we see today, which give certain people authority that they would not ordinarily possess – had they simply stuck to the teachings of the Bible.
Therein lies the main reason why, in my previous article, I mentioned that neither was I a member, nor attended, any so-called ‘church’.
As to be expected, there were one or two individuals – unsurprisingly, senior leaders in these Christian organizations – who expressed reservations over this decision of mine.
They, understandably, insisted that, although there was no perfect church organization, it was still necessary for believers to meet – citing Hebrews 10:25, which recommends us ‘not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together’.
That is, indeed, a crucial component of any society, or even individual, to flourish – since no man is an island unto himself, and we were created by our God Jehovah as a gregarious people – who can only thrive through the interaction with others, thereby sharing ideas, as well as strengthening and comforting one another.
That is a given.
Nonetheless, my short response to the clergyman who contacted me was that, at times, it is better not to eat at all, than to eat food laced with poison!
In other words, as much as it can never be denied that ‘assembling’ with others of the same beliefs is central to one’s growth and development – is can easily become counter-productive, if not downright dangerous and toxic, associating with those whose views of Christianity were twisted and corrupted over the course of the past 1,698 years.
As a natter of fact, genuine Christianity, as espoused in the Holy Bible was never given the time to bloom and blossom – due to incessant persecution, especially by the Romans and Jews, leading to the deaths of multitudes – consequently, those of the faith largely operated underground (and, in most cases, quite literally, judging by recent archeological discoveries and excavations).
It is then ironic that, it was a Roman Emperor who finally decreed that Christians not only be allowed to worship freely, but also turning this into a formal religious organization – closely aligned to the state, with structures of power and authority, with him being in charge.
Henceforth, real Christian faith – which had been nothing more than people believing in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, as simply a way of life – was crushed and destroyed, thereby transforming it into the religious order we witness today.
Therefore, as much as I may want to ‘assemble’ with others – surely, why would I want to poison myself with what was supposed to merely be a close personal relationship with Jesus – but, callously turned into a corrupted perverted religion?
In fact, does Psalm 1:1 not say, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly”?
Surely, then why on earth would I want to sit down every week, listening to teachings that are far divorced from scripture, within organizations that were not even meant to be in existence?
Let it be known that, when the Apostles of Christ began spreading the Gospel, it was never their intention to establish a religion nor a formalized organization – which had structures of power and authority.
Even what many people are fond of describing as the ‘Five Fold Ministry’, as written in Ephesians 4:11, were never offices – but, mere roles, and certainly not positions – tasked with the responsibility of ‘equipping the saints’, and definitely not being in charge of them, or an organization.
The same applies to what are referred to as ‘bishops’ in 1 Timothy 1 – who, in those days, were just there to oversee and give guidance to the understanding of the Christian way to life.
All these mentioned people were, in no way, some powerful men, wearing these huge robes (or, suits) of power and authority, and living in opulence.
These were ordinary folk, who had given their lives to Christ – and, for the ‘equipping of saints’, or edification and strengthening of their faith, and comforting each other – they shared responsibilities and roles within the Christian community, according to what they felt called.
I always want to equate this to a WhatsApp group admin – who is not some powerful individual, with a lavish office somewhere, running people’s lives, and even earning a salary, and possibly required to possess a university degree – but, simply someone with certain responsibilities within the group of equals.
Thus, it is quite disingenuous and even unscriptural for any apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, or teacher (the so-called ‘Five Fold Ministry), and bishop to regard themselves as some office of power and authority.
They are not!
Which leads me to the issue of tithes – another contentious issue that I find deplorable and not in line with biblical teachings
The love of money is certainly the root of all evil – which was behind the establishment of all these church organizations to begin with.
Let us never fool ourselves.
Those who set up these so-called ‘churches’ are never motivated by some strong desire to see people turning their lives to God – with the hope of them living a joyful, peaceful, and sinless life, or entering heaven – but, it is all about the money and power!
That is the brutal truth.
Not a single one of these clergymen is remotely interested in your life, and what becomes of you.
If money was removed from the church equation – the vast majority of ‘churches’ would have never even been formed, to begin with!
Which explains why the topic of tithes is so emotive and contentious within these organizations.
For starters, in spite of tithes having been required in the Old Testament (Jewish) times – as there were priests, and other offerings and sacrifices still a necessity – this all ceased with the glorification of Jesus Christ as our only High Priest and Mediator with the Father.
This is someone who is ‘holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and who has become higher than the heavens…who does not need daily, as with those (earlier) high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for his own sins and then for the people’ (Hebrews 7: 26, 27).
In other words, we no longer have human priests after the death, resurrection and ascendancy of Jesus Christ – and, as such, no longer any requirement for tithes. Period!
There are obviously those who will claim that there is still need for money for the upkeep of their ‘churches’.
Well, I have only one thing to say to that – why do you have church organizations, in the first place?
Even Paul, during his missionary work, was abundantly clear that he did not need to be sponsored or financially supported by anyone, since he already had a means of living (1 Corinthians 9: 1-15).
In as much as there is nothing substantially wrong with being assisted financially with the work of the Lord – there is definitely something gravely amiss, and crooked, with those who rely on fleecing their gullible followers, especially based on some false narrative of tithes.
To wrap up this discourse – since, there is no way I can do justice to this topic within the limitations of a newspaper article, but may have to write an entire book – it would not be complete without tackling whether believers even really need to be taught the word of God by another human being.
Let us remember that, the main task of the early Apostles was to preach to unbelievers or those who had not yet heard of, or received, Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.
They never wasted their time with those who had already grown and matured in their faith, and were baptized by the Holy Spirit – which explains why people like Paul, Peter and John were always on the move, going to previously uncharted territory.
This is in stark contact to the so-called ‘men of God’, whom we have seen over the past 1,698 years – who preach to the same gatherings, week in and week out, for years – as if these congregants never spiritually grown up, mature and leave the nest.
That is why John wrote, ‘The anointing (Holy Spirit) which you have received from Him (God) abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie’ (1 John 2:27).
Why did John see the need to say these things?
In order for followers of Christ not be deceived by anyone.
Yet, we see Christians being deceived and misled each single day, by these supposed ‘men of the cloth’- yet, this could have all been avoided had we allowed only the Holy Spirit to teach us.
In a nutshell, I have leant more about the Kingdom of Heaven directly from God Himself, through His Holy Spirit – than any human pastor could ever have.
In fact, these pastors, as they have done to numerous others, would have taught me the wrong things.
This is my prayer to all Christians – to stop undermining and disregarding the power of the Holy Spirit, by opting to be taught the word of God by man – yet, they can be ‘led into all truth, and ‘taught all things’, far beyond human capabilities.
That is why my life has transformed phenomenally in just a few years, on my ‘own’ – than it could have ever, in a lifetime of going to ‘church’.
In a very short space of time, I quit drinking alcohol, stopped a life of promiscuity and deception, as well as ceased being an angry insecure jealous spouse.
These are all testimonies I will write about in great denial in the story of my life.
Nonetheless, in all this, I never approached any so-called ‘church’, and never had hands laid upon me or prayed upon by some supposed ‘men of God’!
All this tremendous change – which shocked all those around me – was a result of personal prayers and crying out for help directly to my Jehovah God, through my only High Priest and Mediator, Christ Jesus.
Of course, I know that my wife and mother also prayed for a change in me.
The Holy Spirit, thereafter, transformed me – by giving me a new heart and a new spirit, (Ezekiel 36:26) – literally, overnight.
Oh yes, I mean it – I stopped drinking alcohol, within a space of less than 24 hours – and, I became a totally different person.
As I always say to my dear wife Tinta, ‘I didn’t just stop drinking, but transformed my life’.
In conclusion, the era of institutionalized religion ended with the coming of Christ Jesus – and, as such, Christians need to now establish their own personal relationships with Jesus – without the need for a third force.
As our High Priest and Mediator with our Heavenly Father – we no longer need anyone else in this relationship.
It is a personal one!
Those who need the preaching and teaching of other people are those who have not yet received Jesus in their life, and not yet baptized by the Holy Spirit, or not yet matured in the faith.
After that, they can then learn, and be guided directly by, God’s anointing working in them – who teaches them all things, and answers their prayers.
Admittedly, as mentioned earlier, we as individual Christians are not an island unto ourselves – and, still need to meet with others of the same faith, for edification, strengthening and comforting.
However, this was never, and should never be, in the form of organized formal structures as what we find in institutionalized Christianity introduced some 1,698 years ago by Constantine the Great.
Meeting with others can be done in so many forms – even just sitting under a tree, having lunch at one’s home, or even on social media.
That is something that I have never divorced myself from.
Actually, writing this article is a way for ‘meeting’ with other believers – as I am sharing the word, and there will be those who engage me directly (whether by messaging, emailing or calling).
It becomes a danger and toxic – thereby, counter-productive – for any Christian to meet and share ideas that are grossly flawed and erroneous.
As I told the clergyman yesterday, ‘it is far much better not to eat at all, than to eat poisoned food’!
Our beautiful faith has been corrupted and bastardized for far too long, and the time has come for us to press the ‘reset’ or ‘restore factory settings’ button.
We need to go back to true Christianity – the one found in the Holy Bible, practiced by the early Church – which was simply a body of believers, and not a religious organization.
- Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice advocate, writer, researcher, and social commentator. Please feel free to WhatsApp or Call: +263715667700 | +263782283975, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org