A few days ago I updated my Facebook status and reflected on the numbers of people who are killed and raped in South Africa daily. As a country we are infamous for raping instead of nurturing our children. Many people do not know or perhaps do not care to know that even infants are raped which means that after their ordeal they need extensive reconstructive surgery. Does the Church care about these things?
It seems what matters to most Christians is their routine of a 2-hour Sunday service which is largely self-serving. Have you noticed that most of our services are actually designed around us and not around God? Many of us come to be blessed and have our Christian egos stroked and this is perhaps the reason we don’t share God’s nature and concern for the world around us. On Facebook someone suggested that she, as a subscriber, should not be made to take responsibility for Top TV’s broadcasting of hardcore pornography in this country.
This young lady exonerated herself by saying that porn is already accessible on the Internet and via our smart phones. The fact that women are objectified and pornography often leads to the sexual violation of women seemed not to bother her. As a Christian this lady typifies the average Christian we have in South Africa. This is a Christian who does not think that his confession must correlate with his actions.
Here is what is happening in this country. We vote for a corrupt government and then complain about corruption. I honestly cannot wrap my mind around this one. How can a country have 70% Christians and be this dysfunctional and yet countries with far lesser Christian populations function much better? This could only mean one of two things. Either Christianity makes no difference in society or we have far less Christians than we thought.
If we are 70% Christians, is it the 30% doing all the raping and killing or are some of the “Christians” also participating in this social mayhem? I bet half of all people convicted of these atrocities would claim to be Christian. Next year we are again going to the polls to elect public officials and the Church will be used once again as election fodder. Politicians will visit churches and pontificate about issues of morality in order to win votes.
Can we really be this gullible? There are actually entire denominations that have more allegiance to political parties than to God. I wish I was exaggerating but there is a denomination in my city that has commanded its members to only vote for the current ruling party. Are we not complicit in the destruction of this country? Are we not partly responsible for the suffering many are experiencing?
If politicians and politically connected people can loot the treasury at a rate of R30 billion per annum and we keep returning them to power, what does that say about our personal values and convictions? I think we have a corrupt government because we are a corrupt people. Why should God give a righteous government to an unrighteous people?
How can a Church that has not overcome issues of race hope to speak with authority and a prophetic voice to a multiracial society like ours? On my Facebook wall someone conflated issues of race to my post about crime. I get irritated when people trivialise issues and insinuate that blacks are inclined to criminality and whites to racism. I have remonstrated with a number of black people because I considered something they have said or done to be motivated by racism.
As it were the person who raised the issue of race is a black person who is also a minister of the gospel. I believe a real Christian should be above racial prejudice. I made this same point to a gentleman from the whites-only town of Orania who came to talk me after my ministry at this year’s Karoo Mighty Men. I told him that racism is a spiritual issue and so is the type of crime we have in this country.
The sadistic nature of SA’s crime shows that, besides social instigators, there are also spiritual issues at play. It is the devil’s job to steal, kill, and destroy but he always needs an accomplice. When we are apathetic, indifferent, or prejudicial we become complicit with the devil. When we look the other way when the orphans and widows are neglected, how can we claim to be the light?
We as the Church are guilty of the sin of omission.