gracetidings:with dr doug mamvura
“God helps those who help themselves.” How many times have you heard people say this? From which book of the bible, chapter and verse do we get this? It is sad to see how some of these religious clichés have become so common and the vast majority of people, including those who claim to be believers, spread this kind junk.
It is so sad to note that these clichés have been promoted mainly by some of our ministers of the Gospel.
Consequently, the unsuspecting congregation unknowingly take some of this garbage hook, line and sinker. It is as if some of our church leaders have written their own bible. No wonder some people haven’t had spiritual growth in spite of being regular church members.
These people like Apostle Paul says they have remained “babes” because of their belief in this fake gospel or religious clichés.
In this article I will be quoting some of the fake “verses” or religious clichés that have been peddled by some of us as we preach. One of these religious clichés is “God has everything under control”. I am not sure where we find this “verse” in the Word of God. Unfortunately, the vast majority of people believe that lie.
God has given this earth to man and unfortunately man yielded the control to Satan who is the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4).
Satan is depicted as being the god of this world, the prince of this world, and, the prince of the devils, the prince of the power of the air, and that old serpent, called the Devil.
His activities include blinding the minds of them who believe not, deception and craftiness and, disguising himself as an angel of light, tempting mankind and, condemnation, bringing people into reproach and a snare and, lying and all untruth and, and snatching away God’s Word from people’s hearts. We live in a fallen world because of this devil to whom we have given our God given authority.
“The heaven, even the heavens are the Lord’s, But the earth He has given to the children of men” (Psalm 115:16).
God is the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and therefore, as Creator, they are His. However, the dominion of the earth was given to man (Genesis 1: 26-28) God did not rule directly over the earth; that was under man’s authority.
So how can we blame God for the evil that is in this world when it is us who gave away our authority to the devil? You and I have been given the power to heal the sick, cast out demons among other things and if we don’t take our responsibility, nothing will happen. We will end up blaming God for things that we are supposed to do ourselves. If you want to see the sick healed, don’t ask God to do that. Heal them in the name of Jesus. You have been given the authority to use that name for what ever challenge you may face on this planet.
If we find ourselves in poverty, that has nothing to do with God – “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9).
It is a true statement that Jesus made Himself poor spiritually and emotionally so that we could become wealthy in those areas. However, it is also a true statement that Jesus became poor monetarily for us so that we could become wealthy in finances. He has “given us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue” (2 Peter 1:3).
This scripture only works for us if we “know Him”. It is about having an intimate relationship with Him and knowing who you are in Him that you are able to appropriate all these benefits. So, if you are in poverty, please don’t blame God it’s your choice. There are people who believe that it is God’s will that they remain poor because God is in control of everything. Nothing could be further from the ruth.
The second lie (“verse”) is that “Everything happens for a reason”. I have heard this said so many times. I would like to challenge you to show me the book, chapter and verse where this is written. This encourages people to be lazy because they just surrender everything to fate because “everything happens for a reason”. It is very important that you take action. If you are being attacked by the devil, there is no need for you to sit and watch because “everything happens for a reason”. The bible says “Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (James 4:7).
The word “resist” means to actively fight against. This isn’t a passive word. We have to have a violent resolve to take advantage of the kingdom of God. The devil loves passiveness. It is very important that we don’t just sit back and watch ourselves being tormented by the devil “because everything happens for a reason”. We have the power to resist the devil.
The third religious cliché, is often quoted at funerals. This is one of the worst lies that really drives me up the wall. “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away, Blessed, be the name of the Lord”. (Job 1:21). You may ask, “How can this be a lie if I have even quoted the scripture?” First, God is not schizophrenic. How can He give and then take away?
Job credited the Lord as being the One who brought this calamity upon him. Satan is really the instigator of all this evil. It is not God’s nature to hurt those who love and serve Him. Second, it is not God who made that statement but Job. Job had to repent in Job 42:3 when he said “I have uttered what I did not understand”. Job was ignorant about the ways of God as shown by his confession in verse 3.
How sad to see some preachers getting carried away with this verse at funerals. They always open with that verse from the book of Job. How do you console someone who has lost a loved one by saying “God is a good God but He has taken your loved one?” Personally, I would not want to serve such a schizophrenic God.
How do you expect the same person to love this God who has taken away their loved one? This is why we then see some people being very angry with God. Others have even stopped worshipping God and they actually hate Him. This is all because of misinterpretation of scripture by some of our preachers. The Bible is very clear about who kills. “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill and to destroy.” God is not a thief. “I came that you may have life and have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).
The fourth lie is “God allowed it that is why it happened. It was His will”. This is another abused cliché by many people. You get a teenager going for drinks with their friends. They get soaked in beer and get involved in an accident and die. Some preachers at the funeral, you hear them saying “Their time was up.
What kills a person is not a disease or sickness. It is time”. What a fallacy! These kids didn’t die because their time was up. They died because they were drunk and drunk driving kills. Let us not fool people by lying.
I believe one of the reasons why some of us have failed to live victorious lives is because of some of these religious clichés which we have taken to be the Word of God and yet nothing could be further from the truth. Let us spend time in the Word of God so that we can get to know the truth.
l Dr Doug Mamvura is a graduate of Charis Bible School. Feedback: email@example.com or Twitter @dougmamvura