Sadly it doesn’t take long around Church culture before you see deception and abuse. Anyone who has watched the news for enough days in a row or fallen into the trap of turning on Christian television, will be acutely aware that there are people whose motives aren’t always pure and whose methods lack integrity.
I don’t believe these people or circus’ are an excuse for people to shun the Church, but I can understand why they do. These people take core Christian principles, remove them from their greater context and use them to deceive Christians for their own gain.
My intention isn’t to attack the Church or well-known Pastors, but we must be people who use wisdom to discern individuals and we must be aware of the deceptions that so many people cash in on!
Here are 3 simple abuses in the Church:
Money: Give $1000 and you will find break through. Give and God will give back to you. You can’t out give God. You need to make an investment in God’s Kingdom and you will see the return in your own life.
We have all seen finances and the principles of generosity abused in the Church. We must be cautious to not fall into the trap of giving just simply to get a return; instead we must remember that what we have is God’s anyway and we can trust that he will always provide for us!
Healings: If you send $50 I will send you some miracle water from the River Nile, if you drink it you will receive your healing. We will send you our healing cloth, just rub it over the area that you need healing.
God heals through the power of the Holy Spirit. However, there are those who make a mockery out of healing and use God’s truth as a way to manipulate people!
Leadership: If you just take this course or read this book, your life will rise to new heights. If you just develop these leadership skills then you can grow your church size.
This one may not seem as bad as the others but it’s more prevalent in our culture. I believe it’s worse than the others, because more people buy into it. It leads us to depend more on our abilities than our God. It’s no coincidence that Jesus chose a rough group of teenagers to lead the greatest movement the World would see; he was showing that God uses the weak to confound the strong!
What causes me to despise each of these abuses in Church culture is that they target people’s weaknesses and consequently manipulate people for their personal gain.
We must fight them by remembering our relationship with God isn’t about what we can get from Him! It’s primarily all about what we can give to Him!