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Opinions of Saturday, 5 January 2019


Pastors, it is time to repent

We live in a world of lawlessness and wickedness. Yet many say sin or evil does not exist. What a world with weird opinions! But truth is: there is wickedness in the world. The deeds, actions and thoughts of many are sinful continually. Unfortunately, the Church of Jesus Christ which is designed and built to be the light and salt of the world equally commit various acts of evil. These undermine its worthiness and attract condemnation.

However, we know that the church especially its servant-leaders are called to live above reproach and blame, having been set free from the controlling power and bondage of sin. Thus, it is written: “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:1).

Today, opposite is the case. The majority of us live unholy and sensual lives. We are not heavenly-minded. Many Christians including pastors have sinned against God and our neighbours. Yes, it is possible to be saved and tempted by the enemy of our soul, the devil, to lose our guard, fall from grace and be led astray. Often when ministers are led astray, they fail to commit to the sound preaching and teaching of the gospel of Christ.

One area where the majority of Christian ministers in Ghana today sin against God is the neglect to preach Christ Jesus. A faithful servant of Christ will not teach about money, job, marriage, grace, breakthrough, prayer, suffering (trials, temptations and tests) or deliverance without glorifying Christ in the message. To preach the Word of God in a Christian church is to deliver an inspired message to honour Jesus.

We know that the Lord Jesus is the Word that became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1: 14). Christ is the Word (Revelation 19: 13). Christ and the Word are one. Thus, to preach the Word of God is to preach Jesus Christ. The Bible says it is in Jesus that all things hold together. “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Col. 1: 16- 17).

If a preaching or teaching does not honour Christ, does not testify to the truths about Jesus, does not promote the doctrine of Christ and does not agree with the sound knowledge of the Lord Jesus, it will have no life; it will be lifeless; it will be dry; it will be idle. If a prophet claims to have been called into ministry and is filled with the Holy Spirit, he will preach nothing but Jesus Christ.

It is very sad how, today, many pastors have abandoned the preaching of the gospel of Christ to the preaching of pop psychology and material prosperity. Acquisition of wealth and riches has become the sole motivation for many pastors in our generation. As a result, in many churches today, a good pastor is described as the one who pulls crowds and raises hundreds of cedis during revivals and other special programmes.

If a pastor pulls crowds to programmes, preaches to make people happy and is able to trick them through false prophetic directions to give all the money they have, such a pastor is considered to be highly anointed – ‘a great man of God’. Surprisingly, the unsoundness of the message he preaches, his inaccurate and false prophetic utterances, his unbridled desire to pray for people for money against the teaching of Christ Jesus (Matt.10: 8) are swept under the carpet.

Is it being said here that fundraising in church is wrong? Certainly not! Fundraising is an important activity in Christianity. Without funds, the preaching of the gospel in the modern complex society cannot be effectively and efficiently carried out. But where in the Bible did Jesus teach His disciples that they would be called good and anointed servants if they pulled crowds, preached to make people happy, and tricked them to give all the money they had?

Indeed, the time has come for the Church of Jesus Christ to clean its house. It is time for the church to repent. And it must begin from the leadership in 2019. Enough is enough of the sins of dereliction of duty, embezzlement, misappropriation, deception, envy, pride, unforgiveness, hatred, murder, sexual immorality, crude joking, cursing, exploitation, manipulation, distortion of truth, covetousness, greed and all other wicked acts we commit against God and humanity.

It is time to return to the Overseer of our soul, Christ Jesus, with our hands lifted up in humble submission to His will and lordship, confessing our sins and pleading His mercy and the blood of the Lamb. Now, let the erring apostles, prophets, evangelists, bishops and teachers realize the futility of self-effort, consequence of disobedience.

We must sincerely repent with the understanding that we are a peculiar people, royalty of the only wise God. We cannot be saved from sin and remain under the control of sin and obey its desires. Let’s stand for the truth and help one another to know and grow in the Lord. Come on, let’s go to our loving Father and plead His mercy and the redemptive blood of the Lamb for forgiveness and restoration. God is faithful and merciful; He will forgive and deepen His relationship with us. Blessed is the one whose trust is in the Lord who died, was buried, was raised from the dead and lives forevermore.