One of the reasons why the Body of Christ still remains in a state of coma and confusion is because of the many factions within the Pentecostal and Charismatic settings, preaching varied doctrines that each feels is marketable and is comfortable with. We feel so comfortable with those doctrines but subtly, many of the doctrines have come from the Kingdom of Hell and from the devil who has tiptoed into the church unknown to many. We have so many leaders who do not have any business behind the pulpit and they are there week in, week out.
Some of our Pastors and leaders, (I speak concerning the Church not organizations who are no where around the entity called “The Body of Christ” but call themselves churches) have been a tool in the hand of the devil, presenting the many doctrines we have today. We all know and are aware that the devil is able to transform himself into an angel of light and one needs a careful inspection to view correctly and discern as advised in the sacred scriptures or else…for we are not ignorant of the methods of the devil, lest he takes advantage of us (the Church).
There are some who believe that God has saved us from poverty to prosperity, therefore many have come up with doctrines of prosperity, the health and wealth gospel to be precise. They propagate that since God has saved us, we have no business with sickness and poverty. The general idea is to market their church as one, which is able to give solution to the many who are in dire need of health and wealth. My question at this time will be: is it God’s will to heal everybody and make everybody rich? What happens to those we have prayed for and are not healed or wealthy? Are we going back to the day of Pentecost or staying there till Christ comes back for His church?
Some believe in the doctrine of confessing and receiving what they need from God. Once you desire something, you can then begin to confess it until the resultant effect or the thing materializes. They are the sects that believe in positive confession of the scripture or Word of God before they can enjoy the life they feel they desire. This is where the law of positive thinking stems from.
There are some of our leaders who believe that Jesus is Lord. They believe that the bible is the word of God and they believe in what has been written in the bible but added to their belief is this issue of hearing God’s voice aside from the written word of God. They believe in seeing visions and their teachings and preaching’s border more on the lines of experience. When they make arguments for what they do, they go to the Old testament books and point at people like Abraham, Moses, Elijah and Elisha to mention a few. When our leaders make statements, they fail not to let their hearers know that what they have said OR are saying has come directly from God. Even though they have no proof that what was said came from God, they know that saying this will keep everyone silent because nobody wants to argue or question God.
We also have some who have blatantly gone in the opposite direction. One way or the other they have gone the way of exorcism determined to make miracles happen. They set up people to come in as one who is sick and then when the time of signs starts during a meeting, they jump up from their wheel chair and pose like God has just healed them. This they have done with the intention of getting the vulnerable to follow them as disciples. Some give “testimonies” in order to convince their hearers that God has called the “man of God” in question.
We also have some who are specialists in demons and demonism. They are quick to associate everything that happens around them to the devil using the vehicle of the enemy, witches and wizards. People have attended their services in other to get their demons exorcised and removed. Some would vomit strange things from their bodies, while some will drink what they call the anointing oil; some drink ribena and cranberry juice posing to be drinking the blood of Jesus. They approach the Lord’s Table as though they are going for a ritual.
We also have marriage specialists who believe that the purpose of the coming of Jesus is for people to have excellent marriages. The qualification for this is maybe, they have been married for such and such number of years and therefore have the right to have a marriage ministry and teach people what they can do to make their marriages work. My thoughts are: there are many Muslims and people from other religions who have good marriages too and have not gone to start an organization on marriage. They do talk about the many things they have to talk about and find endorsement for their ideas in scripture.
We also have leaders who believe that they have cornered the market on the issue of prayers. They claim to know how to get to God’s heart and by that get their prayers answered. They punish their bodies in what they call fasting and believe that until they do that they have not prayed. The catch on this is that they have figured out that there are many who have many troubles and until they come to them their problems will persist. Guess what? Many people have troubles and they will throng leaders like this.
There are also some who believe in the salvation by works and not by grace alone. They believe that good works such as loving your neighbor, turning the other cheek when someone slaps you, helping people and giving to mention a few, are essentials for salvation. They believe they have to be met in the right place when Christ comes. For example, if Christ comes today and you are found lying, you might not make it to Heaven. The effect of this is that their hearers are plagued with fear in a world where we know that no one can be perfect.
We have some who believe that because the culture today is quite different from that of Moses, Elijah and even Jesus, the bible must move with the culture. They have a tag of the Postmodern and the Emergent. They do not believe in speaking the absolutes but they use the tool of uncertainty to create a new kind of belief in the mind of their hearers with the intention of phasing the bible out in the future. The idea they create is that one is able to determine the “good and evil” for oneself and not the boundaries created by the Bible. Christianity has to be modern is the mantra that is being sung. They claim that God cannot be known but can be related to.
There are also some that believe in the inerrancy of the scriptures. They believe in the creeds and biblical doctrines being taught as the only way forward. They believe the scriptures as the final authority because it is one of the distinguishing characteristics or key points that separate the truth from the error of the false-teachers that cannot save. They believe that doctrine is as important today as it was then. Deviation from the authority of scripture will lead to error resulting in a false gospel, which cannot save. They believe all that God is going to say; all that God has said is written in the pages of scriptures. Adding anything to scripture, as far as these are concerned will be erroneous and hence the impending disaster.
Most of these perceptions have come because there is no clear understanding about the reason for Pentecost: what is the purpose of Pentecost? Are we meant to stay static on the Pentecost frenzy or did Pentecost have a purpose? Many of our leaders have tried to replicate the miracles of Pentecost; many have tried to repeat the message that Peter preached on that day; many have read so many things and doctrines into Pentecost that even God seems surprised at our different antics. To many of our leaders, the evidence of the doctrines they propagate can only be measured by the physical and material things that we see. They say those “things” we see should speak for themselves that God is working with them. It should further confirm that indeed God has called us.
Little do we know and understand that we have a devil that is more intelligent than any human being on the face of planet earth. He is so subtle that he knows that mankind has to see things as evidence to belief. He knows to give things to people who believe it’s God blessing them while he (devil) works behind the scene making sure his false doctrine remains propagated by the members of the body of Christ.
“Oh, that all churches were abodes of love! What do we see in many places? No contending earnestly for the FAITH, but much contending as to who shall be the GREATEST. I heard, the other day, of a church which has come to nothing, and one told me that the reason was that “everybody wanted to be boss”. Half the schisms in churches arise out of the real division, which exists between idlers and workers.” – C H Spurgeon.
Where do we go from here?