The Five (5) misinterpreted lessons in the church history up to now.
The church simply means a congregation of believers. This definition makes it clear that the different denominations in the world may constitute one church. However, these different denominations must be sharing the same belief or faith. For example, all people who believe in Jesus Christ constitute one church of Christ. From the history, the church is one of the greatest voices that are heard whether in government, private institutions or communities. The church has played a big part in world civilization, development, wars, moral changes and political and cultural reforms.
From the above simple background, it is likely possible that the society will always define a virtue basing on the church’s attitude towards that virtue. If the church defines one virtue as good and the other as evil, it is likely that the whole community, including political institutions will follow the same trend. Yeah, there many instances when the church and other institutions go a different way concerning a certain issue, but the strength that usually rises before the matter gets settled tells exactly what it takes to oppose the church.
Thus the power of the church in the world reformations gives it a responsibility for most of the world’s good happenings and evil ones as well. When the church misinterprets a concept, it is possible that the whole world will follow the trend. There we go, the church is the leading definer of what we follow, what we do, what the governments choose, what we buy and what we eat and eh the games we play. I am not saying that all these things are defined by the church; I am just expressing how influential the church is.
Here are the 5 misinterpreted concepts in the church that have kept on changing their true real meaning and contents finally leading to misleading of millions of people. The reason behind this is that the church itself has lost its real quality and thus defines most of the concepts basing on feelings and social differences than the original meanings of the concepts. Read through and prove for yourself.
1. The tithe and other church offertories:
I am sure the above started as a good concept ordained by God to all Christians. The tithe was a tenth of what Christians used to harvest in all forms that was always sent to church as a sign of being grateful to God who has helped you achieve something (some products whether agricultural or financial). However, as many church denominations continued flowing in along the centuries, the original message concerning tithe and other church offertories kept changing finally losing its message.
While the principle aim of such offertories was to help in the church ministries of spreading the word of God, many preachers started exploiting the virtue and misused such money and products for their selfish interests. This started to demotivate church members and they started to dis-value this giving. In our modern churches, even unnecessary kind of offertories have been created making different church pastors coming on the list of the richest people in the world. Yeah, while so many pastors have been able to generate their own money and riches in right channels, many others have cheated the churches they head or pastor.
Because of the great desire for this money, some discrimination has occurred in church basing on who gives in offertories and who gives much. This discrimination cover from finding where to sit during services to burying church members. There are instances in the church where priests would refuse to attend the burial of some members who used not to give offertories. There are examples where some members of the church would be favored by their pastors or priests simply because they were the best givers in the church.
Another dangerous thing that has resulted from mishandling the concept of tithe and offertories in the church is the tendency of Christians to mind about giving tithe and offertories more than their cleanliness of their souls. Christians are constantly absent from the church services in search of money and properties to bring in as tithe and offertories. This is worsened by pastors or priests who put much emphasis on these payments than Christians’ changed lives.
In this document, I have made it a point not to point out any church denomination or church center or name that is doing this wrongly and I expect the readers to make their own discernment and judgments basing on what they experience in their private churches. Also, I have avoided mentioning any individual pastor or priest who ever appeared in news or history maneuvering this church giving expecting the readers to do it on their own. The fact remains that the teachings about tithe and church offertories have become increasing altered and darkened by different churches and pastors or priests leading to the misleading of most people.
Religion is defined by Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary as the belief in and worship of a god or gods, or any such system of belief and worship. Churches have failed to define the true meaning of religion and the best or right religion. They, instead, resorted to the preaching that a certain religion was better than the other. While this context it alone could be true (some religion could be true and better than others), the reasons and explanations given as to classify one as the true one and the other as the wrong one are biased and carry selfish interests.
The problem of discrimination basing on the religion has been in history. Churches have distributed their resources and support to communities basing on religions. When it comes to voting in democratic countries, churches have sent incompetent members into their governments as leaders simply because they belonged to a certain religion or church denomination. The result has been incompetence in the political and leadership systems of countries leading to under-development and wars.
The world has gone through so many wars of churches fighting against others in terms of politics, economical, and infrastructure distribution. Some countries have undergone endless wars simply because of religion differences such countries (the great example here is the non-ending Israel-Islamic wars in the Middle East). The church being the most influential has failed to define and preach the right religion resulting in bloodshed and mistreatment of all kinds basing on the religions.
Also, I have avoided defining what true religion is so that readers can make it their own assignment since it is not the focus of my topic today. However, according to the people’s requests, we will have to discuss which religion is true according to the bible. And since some people don’t believe or even trust the bible, then I can’t promise that this problem will be completely addressed though it is necessary for those who believe in the truth of the bible.
3. Money, business and prosperity.
This concept has continued to undergo alterations by churches trying to define what it means to be rich and prosperous before God. While the whole bible is full of pages condemning those who follow money and the riches of this world, instead of, a dedicated search for the Lord and His goodness, the church has exploited these verses to condemn those who seek money, property and prosperity in this world. For this very reason, many dedicated church-goers are living in poor states of no food, no clothing, no schooling, no healthcare, and poor infrastructure. Some positive pastors who teach about money and prosperity have been condemned a lot that they are against the real true message of the bible. However, so many people have also fallen short of God’s glory simply because of their desire for money and prosperity. The whole issue leaves the world in confusion.
Getting rich and living a better life is God’s arrangement too. It is also God’s commandment to devote our lives, time and knowledge to loving and serving God and only Him. However, the church has failed to combine these two aspects into one of finding pleasure and joy in God as He gets His glory back. The church has, instead, confused the public by emphasizing either following God with all our poverty or following getting money and richness and be doomed.
No matter how the church tries to combine these two aspects, a problem still remains: Either people concentrate much on getting money, property and prosperity in this world or on hunting and chasing after the living God with hungry stomachs and needy bodies. This has resulted in dedicated Christians who are very poor that following God has become the worst cross they have ever carried. It is absurd to find a dedicated Christian having no daily meals, no school fees for children, no dress or cloth for a child, no medical cover-up and living just like rats despite the holy life he or she is struggling to live which ultimately may not be possible or easy due to the compressing situations.
Churches are likely to have yearly planned spiritual lessons for their Christians without including even one business or entrepreneurship lessons or tips. Thus most Christians do not know how to make businesses to support themselves and their respective churches. Churches which try to avert the situation may also overdo it to an extent that Christians get drowned in searching for world riches, instead, of heavenly ones.
Whatever the case, this church’s failure remains because of church leaders’ selfish interests and visions otherwise God’s message pertaining these two aspects is very clear: Love God first and other things follow. They must follow.
4. Desires, longings and love.
The denial of existence of desires and the longing for them to be fulfilled is still in the context of many church leaders. The desire to love a woman, the desire for sex, the longing to be appreciated or to be valued, the desire to be great and make history or to be famous are still taken as sins by many church denominations and great church leaders. Some think that desires are or were created by the devil and in the same way preach the same message to their followers. History has examples of where the church punished severely, tortured or expelled people who either had desires for something or who have met their longings in some way. Many lovers have been killed in many churches and others punished according to the church-set laws.
What results is tragedy: Christians have learned to hide their desires and longings. Girls and boys falling in love hide such feelings and avoid the church leaders or members from knowing. But since our longings can never be overcome but fulfilled as cited by Mike Bickle, the author of ‘the seven longings of human heart’, Christians end up finding their own means of satisfying their desires and longings, instead, of meeting them in proper ways. Churches have put systems that define what true love and marriage is, instead, of respecting human heart and its desires and ended up compromising with the strongest feeling ever given to man-Love.
Every year, thousands of Christians undergo divorce all-over the world, thousands of youth in love relationships do abortions, and many more fall into prostitution and other sins all because of the church’s threats and man-created rules and regulations guiding feelings, desires, longings and love. What a misfortune!
The need to force feelings and desires into hiding in the church has made many suffer mental challenges and social insecurities as they condemn themselves over their failing to control or avoid feelings and longings. This concept still has been damaged by the church over centuries as non-spiritual leaders took over church leadership where they impose their rules and regulations following their personal relations and interests. Some rituals concerning the right addressing of these feelings and desires became increasingly expensive and unfair in churches making many Christians avoid them and suffer the guilty of being law-breakers or carrying them out and get exploited and fail along the way as they enjoy what their hearts didn’t give them but what their church offered.
Desires, feelings, longings or emotions and love are God’s creation and ordinance on human heart and must be respected and met in the proper ways as ordained by God but not the church or churches (I mean church leaders. After all, the church itself is a right institution only made evil by its leaders or users).
5. Politics and leadership of governments.
First, most church denominations do not see the importance of getting involved in politics. Even many Christians believe that politics is not their business. Actually, many Christian websites do not write about political issues and government leadership. Yeah, every website is specialized in some area of service but a little light of some other issues may be necessary to make the whole package a complete. This is what we are doing at www.nemvicx.blogspot.com. We are building a blog that will feed your life with information from important areas of life to make your life complete.
The church has misguided its members when it comes to choosing leaders where many are voted into power basing on the church denomination they belong to but not basing on merit. This, in all history, has resulted into religion discrimination and endless wars basing on church differences. While, the political and leadership system will automatically affect the operation of the church in a country, churches don’t take time to teach their members political knowledge and how to know and choose right leaders.
This is also the church’s failure since God’s take on political and leadership system of societies is clear. The church (church leaders) has kept altering the concept of the politics according to its selfish reasons or interests. The result has been tragedy too: Christians have completely avoided taking part in politics thus failing to serve their purpose in that field of correcting the government errors and putting right leadership. This may actually explain why many leaders are evil, no Christians contest and no Christians win because the system of the church failed the right ones but the corrupt ones.
The misguidance of the church on politics and its failure to effectively take control of politics has resulted in bad governments that are passing laws that are against God’s word on daily basis. The reason why moral questions in most government parliaments end up supporting evil than the good is simply because the church as a great God’s institution has failed to address politics and in a right way as ordained by God.
Finally, there are many other areas that have been mishandled by the church due to its corrupt and failing leadership but the above are the top and most influential ones. However, since we the people are the church, it is possible to take up our responsibility and do what is right concerning the above five areas and God will bless us. Thank you.
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