I know it is a rather touchy subject matter and I know I’ll probably get sniped at by all sorts of formerly rational individuals, who at the clarion call of religion abandon all rationality and lapse into the most mind-numbing bouts of, well, irrationality. Not that religion states that we must bury our senses in our behinds when we attempt to trash issues arising thereof. Jesus Christ, the cornerstone of Christianity comes across as a rather supremely intelligent individual when He was among us and more so now that He has ascended the throne at the right hand of the Father. You would know that if you pay keen attention to your Bible and not just look for the latest piece of it to bamboozle the willing prey that is the Nigerian human species, which of course is my particular subject matter, regardless of the fact that it appears to be a worldwide syndrome.
We claim to want to emulate the very life of Christ while He sojourned the earth, which of course is virtually impossible as He is a divine being, but fail to realise that Jesus treated issues with utmost intelligence and didn’t exactly pander to public opinion or brush off questions because they didn’t agree with what He believed. Jesus did things uniquely, taking care of teeming populations at his own risk and discomfort. Shouldn’t we borrow this particular leaf from Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour? Or is claiming to work and live like Him only a PR gimmick?
I have given room for the fact that we exist in the 21st century and certain advances have been made, quite obviously, in comparison to the Biblical times. Okay, so I didn’t mean certain. More like, awe-inspiring, almost total advances. There exists in these times, a more fluid earth where information travels faster than my brain tells me to flee in times of danger, where to reach more people, you have to possess the means, if you know what I mean.
So, fairplay to the church for employing those means to further fulfill the Great Commission of Lord Jesus Christ shortly before the ascension. Fairplay to the church for widening the borders of the cosmopolitan Christian worldwide continent by these 21st century means. What I do take umbrage at is that so many leaders of the church now seem to have more business acumen than even Warren Buffet himself, at the detriment of the faith. These days, nobody wants to listen to you if you are not preaching prosperity, or displaying miracles in a way that would make Hollywood blush bright red. Some leaders of the church have created this image for Christianity and others have unashamedly followed, definitely so as not to miss out on the massive human influx and pecuniary benefits thereof. These days, Christian leaders possess jets and property not even Billy Gates would possess, on public goodwill, which is how churches and in essence their leaders, essentially them, have acquired massive wealth.
Isn’t it time we begin to tax these massive business enterprises? That’s what our churches have become, the ones big enough anyway, and what those further below aspire to. Gone are the days when being a leader of the church was about sacrifice. I’m not saying these leaders shouldn’t be comfortable, but obscenely? Give one a break! In a nation where 70% live on less than a dollar a day, it is disheartening to see that churches, or more appropriately, their leaders, are feeding off the land at the detriment this hungry teeming multitude. Wouldn’t these monies be better served if they were used to improve the living conditions of the teeming membership of these churches who live under astonishingly perverse conditions, contrary to what the churches would have you believe?
Some Karl Marx fellow once said that religion is the opium of the people. Opium, like the more exotic narcotics that dot our world these days, has the astonishing ability to make you feel at the top of the world while at the same time impoverishing you. Don’t ask what I mean but you I’m sure you get the flow. Churches these days make more than the budget of certain countries and yet you say don’t tax them because they are doing God’s work. Well, God didn’t ask these churches to build universities using their members’ sweat, only for them to turn around and charge humongous amounts as fees which ensure that more than three-quarters of these churches’ members can’t get in because of the prohibitive costs.
God created our brains because He wants us to think with them, rather than out of our asses. I for one, would certainly not be able to sleep at night if I were pitilessly wallowing in comfort while a single one, not even thousands of the sheep I have been asked to shepherd cannot think of what to eat the next morning. Why else would every Tom, Dick and Harry (or Fatai, Sule and Bello, closer to home) want to establish a church? It doesn’t take Einstein’s IQ to know that it happens to be one of the most prosperous business ventures today.
Leaders, forget about global domination for now, there are enough churches equipped for that on diferent continents. Let’s focus on the problems of the day – the hunger of the flock, the poverty of the flock, the illiteracy of the flock, the growing disillusionment of the flock. We’ve made enough money and will continue to make it, given the astute business investments already in place, but now, let’s focus on correcting the societal problems we face. It is what Jesus would have done. He would feed those five thousand and not collect a dime for it. He once chased the thieves out of His father’s house, I wonder if anyone has the balls to do that today…
Kayode Faniyi, @Il__Duce, can be found on Twitter, where he lets his thumbs do the talking.