I Am No Longer A Dumb Christian

No Longer A Dumb Christian

Some years ago, a leader of one of the largest church movement in Nigeria was interviewed on certain aspects that differentiate his church

During the early days of his movement, members had refused to own television sets while those that owned refused to turn it on again. Beware the power of the TV a.k.a. devil’s box

The interviewer asked him why this was so. The leader was very candid – hindsight, as they say, is 50:50.

He owned to the fact that he had grown up living his spiritual life with a focus on a prescriptive plan – a method for holiness. So, he applied that to all he did. This ended up becoming part of the theology of the movement he started.

As I write, the movement has a television ministry and even an internet lifestream for their programs

One of the most candid part of the interview was when he said “…things changed over the years, because of increasing maturity. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, but now that I am an adult…

It’s In You And Me

I know the next thing most of us do is throw the kitchen sink at the leader. But the problem is not just him – it’s with all of us

We all have preferences and these always find their way into how we do life and faith.

I have a way I like to drink my water and I bet if I do a good Bible exposition, I might just find a biblical basis for it (hmm, maybe I need to do that one of these days)

And that is really where the problem is – we create a biblical basis to justify our personal preferences.

I have a way I like to drink my water and I bet if I do a good Bible exposition, I might just find a biblical basis for it

Personal Preferences Vs Biblical Lifestyle

We don’t need to have a biblical basis for every simple thing we do in life – it is just how we like to wear our shoe.

I don’t drink alcohol but I always tell anyone who asks that it is a personal preference. It is not because I consider it a sin.

I find a biblical basis to call drunkenness a sin but none to put drinking of alcohol into that category.

We need to follow and lead people carefully. We must not let personal preferences become theological leanings.

 

Too Dumb Not To Obey

Come to think of it, it really goes beyond just dogmatically following the practices of a church movement. It even goes to the foundation of how we lead our lives.

I understand the importance of paying attention to God’s prophet. But you make God personally redundant in your life if the basis of your everyday life is simply the word of someone else. No matter how spiritually gifted the person is.

If we don't have to live our lives based on someone else's hearsay or say-so, what then is the role of those fantastic words of prophecies we hear in church? Simple, they are to confirm and help re-establish whatever God has said to us personally.

Why Oh Why

Some people have gone to make life-changing decisions based on the hearsay of someone else. If all your most important decisions have been made based on the hearsay of someone else, you have got any of these going for you:

  1. You are so far away from God that you can’t hear him when He is trying to tell you stuff about you
  2. You are so lazy in your spiritual walk, you don’t see or hear the signs when He is talking to you
  3. .You just can’t be bothered – let someone else do the heavy lifting

We need to follow and lead people carefully. We must not let personal preferences become theological leanings.

No Sin In Being Dumb

Under the new covenant, No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. (Heb 8:11). If you live less than this, you are living less than God has made available to you.

You are not in sin, just not living the smart spiritual life. But you will be responsible for everything you do in your dumb state.

If we don’t have to live our lives based on someone else’s hearsay or say-so, what then is the role of those fantastic words of prophecies we hear in church?

Simple, they are to confirm and help re-establish whatever God has said to us personally.

Perhaps, I am a bit biased. In my spiritual walk, no prophet has given any word which has not already been established in my heart by God. They have helped to give further emphasis to what I heard but they have not been the foundation for building my life on.

No Longer A Dumb Christian

See The Light

But you ask, why do I need to do all these heavy-lifting? Why can’t I just let other hear God and give me the word on living faith and life? Well, here you go:

1.Living someone else’s life:

You may never know when you start living the prophet’s preferences – no one starts off this way but it happens. Little preferences start getting biblical support through a personal interpretation of scripture texts and out-of-context verses. And you? you are none the wiser.

2.Preferences become your prejudices:

Do you notice that in some church movements, preferences that have found their way into their articles of faith become their worldview and subsequently the way they form opinions about other people – you don’t dance when you worship, you must be worshiping God less than acceptable.

3.Minimal Knowledge Of God:

You know more about what your church movement or favorite pastor does than what God does. To you, God is just the postage stamp that gets the envelope going. Nope, He is the message, envelope, and stamp all rolled together. Your church movement or pastor is just the paper He writes Himself on.

4.Regret About What Could Have Been:

Did you notice that scripture talks about wiping every tear from the eyes of His saints (Rev 21:4). I think some of those tears will come from the regret of seeing who we could have been when we see who we were meant to be like – Big Brother Jesus.

Let me give you something I hope can be a personal motto to live by. It’s my No Longer A Dumb Christian Declaration

 

The No Longer A Dumb Christian Declaration

I am no longer a dumb Christian

Who just rolls with anything anyone says.

I know the difference between

Personal preferences and a biblical lifestyle.

 

And when I am not sure,

I have a critical mind to put

Every teaching and thought

Through the laboratory of God’s word.

Just like the Berean Christians. (Acts 17:11)

 

I am known by God

And I make every effort to know

God first in everything

I don’t claim to always be right

My only claim is this

I strive to always be

On the side of what is right

 

This means I am always evaluating

My own motives and teachings

I want to teach only truth

And not be afraid to say

My opinion is just an opinion

 

I Am No Longer A Dumb Christian.

 

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Tola Akinsulire
 

A married guy with a precocious son who works his (I mean me, not my son – I bet you know, right?) day job as a financial guy trying to make real estate projects have some sense to the investor. I like to talk about what I learn along the way as I live my faith in life (family, work, friendships, fellowship, community and anything else you can put here).