A few weeks ago a certain circus was played out on our screens and the name Mwende was flying around all over and we even got a new emoticon :-V now that the dust has settled, let's take another look at that story.
This is the story a supposed “man of God” goes to indulge in carnal pleasures on the streets and suggest to the service provider another business opportunity. Instead of struggling out there in the cold street she could earn a tidy sum working for him, all she has to do is come to his church. Now in the church she uses her repertoire of acting skills to feign a 'curse' that makes her mouth turn to one side and it takes the “anointed” words of the pastor to break this curse. This curse was said to be because of slandering the “man of God” how convenient. Naturally the mouth straightens out after the “prayer” and she begin to “praise the Lord” for the “miracle”. The pastor did not know all this was being recorded to be broadcast on prime time news. After the story was run the reporters visited the church the next Sunday only to be chased out like criminals by a cheering congregation who later treated to more parlour tricks of applying oil on a wooden cross on the building. Sadly instead of being investigated the church leadership actually defended his actions. Stupid I know!
I won't even go into the spiritual issues at play here but just from plain observation this is not a miracle worker but a plain and simple con job done in cahoots with prostitutes. In fact the story came to light when they were not paid their dues by the pastor. The amazing bit is that there are still people still being fed lies and not only do they gladly receive them but actually defend and support the rogue pastor. Why is this is so? Somebody once told me that such charlatans are just replacing the previous ones we used to call witchdoctors, which is true. The people are superstitious and clever men are preying on their superstitions and fear to manipulate them into believing that they can work magic. In the case of witchdoctors it is in the form of trinkets but the modern day conman uses “God' as a front for his schemes due to ignorance of the multitude. Same script different cast.
All the modern day conman has to do is memorize some religious cliches and thrown in a few bible verses here and there to appear genuine and voila he has a captive audience. What is bad is that such rogues give the decent workers in the church out there a bad name. When Jesus Christ walked the earth he went around doing good and doing miracles like healing the sick among others and had a huge following because the people had needs which were being met. These needs still exist and we all search for something greater than ourselves for help in times of trouble and disillusionment and that need is exploited by some. Jesus Christ warned his followers of false prophets and wolves in sheep's clothing who would come to exploit them and this has been the case time and time again over the centuries. So how does one escape?
In my opinion the greatest weakness that is exploited is ignorance. In this modern day the bible which is the basis for all Christian belief and practice is widely available for all to read and anybody can do it for themselves. However many do not do so and allow others to prepackage the message for them and don't take time to investigate the truth or lack thereof that prevails. Over the years I have come to see this to be true. For example a concept that is oft repeated particularly on our screen is this idea of “planting a seed” usually accompanied with a number to send donations to “sow a seed in the ministry” . The term is used in the bible for sure but not in such a context in Paul's writings to the Corinthian church it was in the context of sending help to fellow believers who were suffering in Palestine due to famine (2 Corinthians 8-9) Not for his own ministry. Another instance is when the Ephesians are admonished not to sow in their fleshly desires in Ephesians 6. There could be others that I may have missed but you get my point- I discovered that by reading for myself. In any case after Jesus taught 5000 people he actually fed them using food contributed by a boy in that crowd- no Mpesa TM numbers given! I could go on and on about that one but I hope my point has been made. Ignorance is no excuse and as long as it persists so will oppression and exploitation of the masses. The same principle can be applied on the political scene in Kenya too- fleecing the flock in this case the citizenry at large who are oblivious of their rights.
So in closing as much as I detest the rogues out there giving decent hard-working men of God a bad name I remind all to be vigilant and take time to know. Ignorance does not benefit anybody and gives others an opportunity to exploit you. Also remember that one who benefits from your ignorance will not want you to know. Know for yourself!