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SUCCESS IN CHURCH HISTORY
Although early Christians faced many hardships that included persecution and poverty, there are some successes they achieved, both spiritual and physical.
SUCCESSES ATTAINED BY THE CHURCH IN ITS HISTORY.
1. Spreading Christianity. Early Christians succeeded at spreading the new faith far and wide, from Palestine to Asia, enlightening both Jews and Gentiles.
2. Massive conversions. The gospel had been preached as commanded by Jesus. Many people converted from their pagan ways and took up faith in Jesus.
3. Baptism. As a way of #initiating the new converts, many people were baptized by #immersion which strengthened converts in the new faith.
4. Fellowships. New converts and early Christians regularly met up and shared challenges and ideas about the new faith.
5. Erection of churches. The early Christians set up Holy places for Christians to converge to pray and worship God. This was done in Egypt, Italy etc.
6. Bible studies. Scriptures had to be learned and understood by New converts. Bible lessons were carried out in #secluded places which boosted people’s knowledge of God’s word.
7. Writing epistles. Learned apostles realized the need to preserve the Good news for future generations as well as for hard to reach churches. Paul, Peter, James etc put down such writings.
8. Lives of prayer. Early Christians constantly communicated to God, presenting to Him their requests for guidance, protection, etc which made them ever so stronger in the faith.
9. Training indigenous leadership. Early Christians imparted to the natives wherever they went skills of leadership in order to have good management in the social infrastructures they had put up eg schools, hospitals etc.
10. Decampaigning slavery. Early Christians especially the missionaries realized the havoc that slave trade was wrecking upon Africans eg depopulation, death and fought it. Eg David Livingstone.
11. Uniting peoples. A united population would be easier to evangelize. The social service centers they built were public, and never discriminated people. They instead promoted cohesion.
12. Charity. Jesus was charitable in His ministry. Early apostles emulated him and rendered help to the poor, lame, and other disadvantaged people on the #meagre resources they had.
13. Health improvement. People in different places were suffering from various diseases. Early Christians set up health facilities, equipped them with drugs resulting in healthier lives.
14. Formal education. Early Christians in Africa introduced the 3R education that helped natives move toward modernity. Schools built include King’s College, Buddo, St Mary’s Kisubi, Gayaza High school, St Mary’s Namagunga etc.
1. Why were most early church activities successful?
– The Holy Spirit received on Pentecost.
– They were determined to succeed.
– They were united.
– Encountering good political leaders.
– Some were educated like Paul.
– Having competent leaders.
– Serving as good examples
– Writing down scriptures
– Opposing inhumane practices eg slavery.
– Living prayerful lives.
2. How successful were Monks and Nuns of Alexandria?
3. In what ways did Early Christians try to achieve their objectives?
SUPPOSED FAILURES OF THE EARLY CHURCH.
Members of the early church in their ministries made some mistakes as well, some that would misguide people or render them reluctant to convert. Such mistakes have been perceived as failures and they include the following.
1. Emphasizing a harsh God. Early Christians had seemed to carry a message of a merciless God that always looked out to punish all sinners. This created unnecessary panic which would slowdown the conversations.
2. Emphasizing hell. In the process of their ministries, some early Christians over emphasized hell, place for torment for sinners. This however made some potential converts abandon plans to convert.
3. Spiritual gifts misuse. After Pentecost, some Christians were blessed with Holy spirit gifts of healing, speaking in tongues etc. Unfortunately, some of them developed pride, arrogance and competition which portrayed a negative image of the new faith.
4. Restrictive religion. Those early preachers emphasised the things not supposed to be done by Christians. As a result, some people viewed the new faith as too restrictive, that took away freedom.
5. Unbalanced ministry. The early church members had bent so much upon spiritual growth and activity leaving out the physical aspect which is not the true Christian teaching. The result was poverty.
5. illiterate presentations. The most early Christians were uneducated apart from Paul. It was therefore very difficult for the Gospel message to appeal to the Greek learned philosophers who preferred intellectual debates.
6. Indoor confinement. Some of them such as the monks and nuns spent most if not all if their time inside secluded monasteries. This led to a loss if touch with the rest life of the people outside.
7. Disunity. Different groups of early Christians emerged supporting different persons for leadership eg Paul, Peter, Christ etc. This was threatening the very existence of the new faith.
8. Materialism. Some Faithfuls started to mind more about enriching themselves with worldly riches by engaging in business which portrayed a bad picture. Such include monks and nuns of North Africa.
9. Easing colonialism. In many societies, the gun followed the Bible, so meaning that early Christians colluded with imperialists to put some societies under the rule of foreigners which was dishonest act.
10. Slave ownership. Some in Early influencial Christians retained slaves even when others elsewhere were being freed. This as the church looked on without trying to stop it was a failure.
11. Despising indigenous culture. Early missionaries held views that were anti established cultures eg African cultures branding such activities as traditional dancing and singing, as satanic. This was an act of chauvinism.
12. Immorality. Some early Christians mixed up pagan practices with those of the new faith, Christianity. Those at Corinth practiced incest while others engaged in other sexual sins which destroyed confidence in the new faith.
13. Low positions for women. The early church had ignored the importance of women in God’s work, concentrating more on men yet both sexes are equal in front of God.
14. Despising Children. Jesus had allowed children into his presence. However, other later early Christians paid very little attention to the little ones yet they were also supposed to serve God.
BIBLE /CHRISTIAN TEACHING ABOUT SUCCESS.
Right from the Beginning, God’s plan was for man to be successful in all his endeavors. This plan was cut short by the fall of man.
OLD TESTAMENT TEACHING
1. Creation. God had created the universe and all that is in it and on the Sixth day had rested. He Himself declared that all He had created was good indicating that the activity was a success Gen 2.
2. Subduing earth. After creation, God gave man the responsibility of caring for and developing earth for survival. Thus man’s success would depend on how he would work to develop earth. Gen 1:2.
3. The Israelite liberation. Through Moses, God enabled the freedom of the Jews from Egyptian bondage which was a success. Besides, it was a fulfillment of God’s promises of success to Abraham. Exodus.
4. Victory Conquests. God used His power to enable Israelites to succeed at conquering powerful peoples eg the Amalekites that were more powerful just as they reached the promised land. Exod 17:13
5. Monotheism as the way to success . The belief in one God had proven to be the basis of success for Israelites. That is why in every covenant, Israelites pledged faith in Yahweh alone. Deut 8-13.
6. Circumcision. God orders Abraham to circumcise all males among his people. This was to be a mark for which God would use to ensure success to His only Chosen people. Gen 17:11.
7. Observance of the Decalogue. The ten commandments were handed down to Israelites to guide them through their way if life. if they did follow them, they would be successful.
8. Respect of the Sabbath. The seventh day was a time to rest and glorify God. Success was for Israelites that would obey this command.
9. The importance of sacrifice. Israelites had the obligation to offer to God sacrifices of male livestock. Such animals had to have no defects. This would breed divine success.
10. Pilgrimages. Success was for those Israelites that made spiritual journeys to holy places, to Glorify God especially the annual travel to the Jerusalem temple.
11. The Mt Carmel contest. Elijah had been granted success when God sent a fire that burnt up his sacrifice. His faith in God had enabled him to win the contest against Baal prophets whom he killed thereafter.
12. David’s Humility. God had shown that it’s through one being humble that they would be successful. This was evidenced by King David who by staying humble had achieved a lot eg killing Goliath, repentance etc.
13. Divine Wisdom. King Solomon had achieved many successes eg writing songs, proverbs, construction etc due to the wisdom God Gad given him.
14. Child bearing. Sarah and Hannah had been viewed as successful after producing their own children. Hannah engaged a lot in prayer (1 Sam 1:20) which underlines the importance of prayer towards success.
SUCCESSES MOSES REALIZED FOR /BROUGHT TO THE ISRAELITES
Moses’ life was a miracle right from the beginning. Growing in the Royal Palace didn’t hinder him from realizing how his fellow Hebrews were suffering. Later, he effected the following successes.
1. Availing God’s voice again. Moses’ activities restored the voice of God among Jews that had by now stayed scarce. He availed God’s voice that responded to their cries of suffering.
2. Liberation. Moses personally presented himself as the rescuer of the people from the bondage of hard work. He himself led the Exodus.
3. God’s presence. Moses activities made it clear to Jews that God really existed and was concerned about them. Earlier, their suffering had seemed to show that God was absent from their lives.
4. Mediation. Moses was able to act as a go between the people and God. It was through him that people did get a real access to God.
5. Evidence of God’s power. Moses’ acceptance of his call enabled not only the Jews but also the Egyptians to realize God’s power. This was seen through the plagues He effected and other wonders.
6. Establishment of a new covenant. It was through Moses that God and His people made another Gracious agreement at Mount Sinai which brought a new hope of protection and providence by God.
7. Law giver. Moses successfully delivered the the Decalogue but also wrote down hundreds of many other laws as the Torah (the first five law books) that acted to guide Israelites in their lives.
8. Exemplary lifestyle. Moses lived a Holy lifestyle, closely following and doing what pleased the Lord. Every other member of the Israel community had chance to emulate him and live righteously.
9. Introduction of priesthood. Moses served as the first chief priest in Israel carrying out such activities as offering sacrifices, holding religious ceremonies, etc. All other priests followed his work and teachings.
10. Prophetic role. He carried out prophetic roles, providing divine guidance, performing miracles which generally improved righteousness among people.
11. Introduction of celebrations. Moses successfully brought into practice most of the chief celebrations in Jewish tradition Eg Passover, Day of atonement etc which stil exist to-date.
12. People Shepherd. Moses portrayed himself as the caretaker of the Israelites who had to be approached in all cases of need eg in thirst, hunger, illness etc
13. Dispensing justice. As the chief judge, Moses successfully dispensed justice amongst Jews, ensuring fairness and setting disputes according to God’s laws. This ensured order and harmony.
14. Military triumphs. Moses was able to lead Israelites in successful military campaigns against Canaanite and Amalekite armies which enabled occupation of the promised land.
REASONS WHY JOB IS CONSIDERED A SUCCESSFUL MAN
Job was a man of God that lived the in land of Uz. He feared God and had no sin. However, he underwent terrible suffering befitting a sinner. He is considered successful due to the following.
1. Monotheism. Job maintained a firm belief in one God at a time when most other people of his time worshipped many gods. Even God acknowledged it.
2. Perfection. Job had no sins and was Upright in the eyes of God. Job 1:8 shows God admitting that Job was like no other in keeping away from sin.
3. Real Faith. Job had so much faith in God and couldn’t accuse or curse God despite the tragedies that had befallen him. Job 1:20 shows that after receiving the bad news, worshipped God.
4. Rejecting his wife’s ungodly ideas. Despite his agony, Job remained righteous to God and couldn’t accept to sin on another person’s advice. Job 2:10 shows Job refusing his wife’s idea of cursing God.
5. Defending his righteousness. Job stayed bold, defending his righteousness and confirming he wasn’t sinful when his friends had suggested that God was punishing him for being sinful.
6. Compassion. Job had felt pity for the poor, orphans, the blind, the lame etc by giving them clothes, and other kinds of help which made him popular. Job 29:12-16.
7. Love of the scripture. Job had great love for Holy scriptures and kept and followed all words of God. He knew it was a way of achieving success. Job 23:12.
8. He shunned evil. Job had succeeded in avoiding wronging God. He believed that the keeping away from sin was a way to eternal knowledge. Job 28:28.
9. Honesty. Job valued honesty and oral truth because deceit is ungodly and breeds injustice. Job 27:4.
10. Being considerate to his accusers. Job forgave his accusers. In fact he thought they were right although wrong to think that he was a sinner and prayed for them. 16:4,5
11. Trusting God in stead of wealth. Job had never put his hope and confidence in his riches Eg gold. He had trusted God instead as the giver of everything. Job 31:24.
12. Loving enemies. Job had never felt happy at the suffering of his enemies. He had never cursed his haters but instead prayed for them. Job 31:29
13. Perseverance. Job endured terrible unexplained suffering to the end. Other scriptural authorities Eg James too gave an example of Job and how he endured suffering. James 5 :11
14. Wealth influence and children at last. After a long period of intense bodily and mental suffering, coupled with endurance, Job was blessed with everything good yet again including children, livestock, friends etc.
NEW TESTAMENT TEACHING ON SUCCESS (The Christian teaching about success basing on the new testament)
1. Jesus is the origin of success. John 3:15 shows that Jesus comes into people’s lives for them to have eternal success, that of attaining everlasting life.
2. Hearing and obeying Jesus’ words and teachings is fundamental for one’s success, John 5:24.
3. The beatitudes. Jesus’ sermon on the Mount to multitudes of people spells out what believers should think do and say in order to be successful. Matthew 5
4. Success is universal. Ephesians 6:8 spells out clearly that success depends on what every person does. All people, free, slaves etc can be successful.
5. Loyalty to God the father. Jesus makes it clear in John 4:34 that His success would only come from doing His Father’s will. Christians should also do God’s will to succeed.
6. Utilizing talents. Jesus spells out the importance of discovering and using one’s talents to the fullest in Matthew 25:14-30. He condemns those that take no time to develop talent.
7. Minding about the quality of work. In Luke 6:48, Jesus condemns people who care little about the quality of work they do. To be successful, one has take care to do high quality work.
8. Hard work pays. In 2 Thes 3:12 Paul stresses that it’s through working hard that man shall get his daily bread. Hard work breeds success.
9. Discipline. Paul tells Timothy in 2 Tim 2:3-6 to work obediently with discipline like a soldier in order to be successful.
10. Dual ministry. Jesus balanced his mission into serve physical and spiritual needs. That’s why he healed the sick, fed the hungry but also preached. To be successful, both dimensions have to be cared for.
11. Team work. Paul in 1 Cor 12:1-3 urges Christian individuals to contribute each onto the work of God in order to be successful. He says, Christians are like parts of one body each with a role to play.
12. Charity. Jesus in Matthew 25:35,36 stresses that successful are those that help the needy with clothing, food, comfort etc
13. Rewarding. Paul in 1 Cor 3:8 stresses that God’s work breeds success because it is rewarded, each according to how they’ve worked.
14. Resurrection. In John 11:25, Jesus assures his followers that real success lies in the hope for resurrection for even if believers die, they will live again eternally.
THE SUCCESSES AND PERCEIVED FAILURES OF JESUS CHRIST
Jesus’ life ministry was a success. He completed His mission and achieved His set objective of dying for sinners and defeating sin. More of his successes include:
1. Prioritizing God. Jesus put God as number one in His ministry. In all his activities, e would first communicate to God.
2. Exposing God’s love. Jesus succeeded at showing God’s love to people. He did this through performing helpful miracles and dying for them.
3. Reviving the relationship. Jesus’ ministry re-established the previously broken relationship between God and man. People once again could be children of God.
4. Giver of hope. Jesus in re-instilled hope into groups of people that viewed themselves as the nastiest of sinners by associating with them eg tax collectors, prostitutes etc.
5. Resisting temptation. Jesus defeated the Devil’s attempt on him to sin. This he did this by the good knowledge of the scriptures and commitment to His Father.
6. Universality of his ministry. Jesus was successful at making his ministry all inclusive. He never favoured one group to sideline another. He delt with the rich, poor, Jews, gentiles etc
7. Moral uprightness. Jesus succeeded at living a righteous life, with no cases of immorality of the time. He exhibited a best example of a Godly lifestyle to his followers.
8. Compassion. Jesus always felt touched by the spiritual and physical needs of the disadvantaged. So he fed the hungry, healed the sick etc and also preached to and guided his hearers.
9. Humility. Despite having divine authority over all nature, Jesus chose to live a humble lifestyle. This would help help him to associate with people of all walks of life.
10. Team spirit. Jesus was successful at acquiring 12 men with whom he would minister. He valued working with others as a team to effect success.
11. A good people shepherd. Jesus succeeded at being a reliable leader that would be looked to in all cases of want. He quickly solved situations such as the lake storm, need for food etc.
12. Righting Sabbath. Jesus successfully corrected the misinterpretation of Sabbath laws saying man wasn’t meant to be enslaved by it. Religious leaders had made Sabbath a people’s burden.
13. Championing women and children’s rights. Jesus realised the importance of women and children in God’s kingdom and worked to have them attain eternal life. He associated with and blessed them.
14. He completed His work. It was a big success for Jesus to have accomplished His goals on Earth, of saving mankind by dying on the cross. He in John 19:30 Himself declares, “It’s finished”
HIS PRESUMED FAILURES
In His ministry, Jesus was faced with many challenges which however were meant to serve a purpose for His followers. However, those challenges could humanly be viewed as failures and they include the following.
1. A poor background. Jesus hailed from a poor carpenter’s family who owned nothing much, having been born in a manger. All throughout his life, he lived a poor man.
2. Accepting Baptism. John’s Baptism was meant to cleanse sin. Some people viewed Jesus’ Baptism therefore as an admission that he was a normal sinful man like all others.
3. His temptation. The Devil itself supposed Jesus was a failure. As a result, it attempted to make Him sin like any other man. Accepting Satan to tempt Him 3 times looks a failure.
4. Associating with sinners. A holy man of His kind and in His time, Jesus wasn’t expected to be-friend tax collectors, prostitutes, outcasts etc. His love of them made him look a sinner Himself.
5. Weak disciples. All throughout, Jesus worked with despicable disciples of little faith, with a lack of understanding of Jesus’ teachings which would be a failure of their teacher chose them.
6. Dishonourable. Jesus Himself admitted He was a prophet with no respect even in His hometown. He preferred to be called son of man to Son of God. Having no respect would be a failure.
7. Servant hood. Jesus presents Himself as one who came to serve, not to be served. He washed his disciples’ feet etc yet a successful King should have been the one to be served.
8. Unreasonable behavior. Jesus often behaved contrary to normal human behaviour. At one time he abandoned food and continued preaching. Some people thought He was insane which looks a failure.
9. Anger. Mark 11:15 shows Jesus in the temple at Jerusalem out of control, overturning tables and physically engaging traders. This supposed lack of self control was a failure.
10. Judas’ betrayal. Jesus was betrayed by his own disciple Judas. This would look a failure because, being a Son of God, He should have avoided it in advance.
11. The humiliating arrest. Jesus was surprisingly arrested by Roman soldiers with no event. That’s why Judas Iscariot the betrayer killed himself after realizing Jesus had not miraculously avoided arrest.
12. Crying. On many occasions, Jesus was seen weeping like any other mortal man. Luke 19:41 He wept for Jerusalem. On the cross before He wept died. This emotion could be seen as a failure.
13. Crucifixion. After a terrible treatment with no self defense, Jesus was hung on two pieces of wood, with and like common criminals. This could act to show Him as a powerless failure.
14. Death. Jesus as a Son of God should have supposedly stayed alive despite the inhuman treatment he had received. Most people never knew He would give in to death.
A COMPARISON OF THE AFRICAN UNDERSTANDING OF SUCCESS WITH JESUS’ TEACHING ABOUT SUCCESS
1. Relationship with God. In both cases, a good relationship with God is not only considered a success but also a source of blessings.
2. The role of initiation. Both consider an initiation rite as a success and a source of it. Traditionally, circumcision, body tattooing are important as Baptism is in Jesus’ teaching.
3. Importance of prayer. Both emphasize the role of humbly communicating to God to gain success. It’s when God is made aware of goals that they can be achieved.
4. The need for forgiveness. Both teachings emphasize the need to ask for forgiveness and to be forgiven in order to succeed. This is because sin leads to failure.
5. Resistance to temptation. Both teachings consider the virtue of self control important toward attaining success because it’s a sign of total loyalty to God.
6. Presence of evil spirits. Both teach the presence of enemy spirits that are bent on hindering a person’s success. Jesus cast them out while Africans would visit diviners to bind them.
7. The role of thanks giving. Both teachings offer the giving of thanks a success and also a source of it. Jesus calls for the giving of offerings as Africans offered sacrifices as thanks.
8. Universality. Both present an opportunity for success to everyone that lives and behaves accordingly. Nobody is sidelined or favoured in achieving success.
9. The need for hard work. Both teachings call for hard work in the achievement of success. Jesus engaged in hard work Himself to be successful as Africans never tolerated laziness.
10. Working as a team. Africans realized the need to work together communally in order to be quickly successful. Jesus also preferred to work together with 12 other men for success.
11. Utilization of talents. Both encourage the discovery and full use of one’s inborn gifts in order to achieve success.
12. Respect of leisure. Jesus enjoyed leisure by attending parties etc. Africans also integrated leisure in all their work. Leisure provides rest and relaxation which is essential for success.
13. Peace and harmony in society. Both point at people living together harmoniously if success is to be realized. Both Jesus and Africans reconciled people and settled disputes to that effect.
14. Marriage. Both Jesus and traditional Africans maintained that a good marriage not only was a success but also it’s source. All forms of marriage breakdown were not supported.
15. Children. Both views hold bearing of children a huge success. It was a realization that the very existence of a future society depends on them. Africans trained them and Jesus blessed them.
1. Jesus maintains that success to his followers solely depends on one’s faith in Him. Africans had it that loyalty to customs was the way to success.
2. Christians are urged to rely on the guidance of the Holy Spirit for success yet traditional Africans maintained that success depended on elders’ guidance.
3. Jesus emphasizes that God determines a person’s success according to one’s righteous lifestyle. Africans emphasized loyalty to the common good to be successful.
4. Traditional Africans believed that the dead ancestors continued to play a big role in people’s successes. Jesus only mentions the love of God and fellow people as the way to success.
5. According to Jesus, accepting to lose an own life for the well-being of others is a success. Traditionalists had no belief in self sacrifice to the point death.
6. Jesus’ life and teachings emphasize that enduring in harsh times and in pain leads to success. To Africans, pain was a failure.
7. Christian teaching emphasizes faith and hope in unseen protection and providence. Africans believed success depended upon the physical work and benefits.
8. Jesus considered women as important in human success. Africans instead viewed women as the weaker sex that had no role in attaining and enjoying success.
9. Africans considered having many wives a sign of success because it would be a sign of hard work and resolve. Jesus on the other hand encouraged monogamy as a success.
10. Traditional Africans maintained that owning a lot of property eg livestock, land etc a sign of success. Jesus instead calls for spiritual wealth in the form of faith.
11. Africans, would publicly show off their riches to gain prestige and recognition. Jesus stresses that one’s success is not meant to be publicized for the public but him and God.
12. Jesus teaches about how his followers would be successful by resurrecting in Him from the dead. Traditional Africans never believed in an earthly life-after.
13. Jesus urges his followers to work for the greatest success, heaven. African tradition only maintains an unending life in the spiritual world not clearly known.
14. Jesus urged his apostles to spread the gospel message to all the world. That would be a success. Traditional Africans never committed to spreading their lifestyle anywhere.
SUCCESSES THAT THE CHURCH IN UGANDA HAS ATTAINED
1. Extending the Gospel. The church has successfully used all means available to spread the gospel to all, leading to social transformation.
2. Fellowships. The church has continually encouraged Christians to regularly meet up and share experiences and encourage each other in the faith.
3. Scripture study. The church realises the need for it’s members to have a deeper understanding of the Holy Scriptures. They’ve set aside days when they hold bible lessons.
4. Bible translations. The English Bible has successfully been translated into local dialects/languages which has brought people closer to God. Eg as done by the Uganda Bible Society.
5. Sex Education. The church has succeeded at righting the false information concerning sex especially to the youth. This has ensured proper copying up with sex challenges when growing up.
6. Marriage protection. The church has formed organizations eg Mother’s Union, Father’s Union, and taught married couples aimed strengthening the marriage institution.
7. Children’s rights. The church has been a champion of the well being of children through condemning child abuse practices like child sacrifice, defilement etc
8. Supporting orphans. As a result of civil wars and the HIV/AIDS Uganda has many orphans. The church has formed organizations such as Compassion International which them.
9. Supporting women. The church has been successful at advocating for the rights of women as an equal sex. Groups such as Mother’s Union, the Married Club have championed this.
10. Supporting the youth. The youth should form a big part of the church. As such, it has ensured their stay in matters of church the through groups like the YMCA, YWCA, Youth Alive etc.
11. Improved health. It has been a success for the church to set up health facilities that provide medicare needed by the disease affected people. Such include Nyakibale hospital, Rukungiri.
12. Opposition to bad governance. The church condemns dictatorship, corruption and human rights abuses. It has been successful at making such practices known worldwide.
13. Electronic media. The church in Uganda has taken advantage of the growing technology trends to put up media channels eg radio stations that have eased the spread of the gospel.
14. Formal education. The church has patronised very good schools that are top in providing quality education.Such include St Mary’s College Kisubi etc.
FAILURES OF THE CHURCH
1. Neglecting divine wisdom. Most of the work that now takes place in the church is the result of human wisdom generated through selected committees instead of guidance of the Holy Spirit.
2. Neglect of Repentance. The church has failed to strictly urge it’s members to confess their wrongdoings and abandon them. They fear losing them to rival churches.
3. Emptied Baptism. The ritual of Baptism which should be spiritual initiation to the faith has been reduced to a mere fashionable practice of acquiring a second second name.
4. Over emphasizing religious rituals. There are some rituals that have little significance to the spiritual development of Christians which are over emphasised Eg memorised prayers, reciting the rosary etc
5. Abuse of spiritual gifts. Some Christians have acquired holy spirit gifts of prophesying, healing, speaking in tongues etc which however have made them proud and arrogant.
6. Discrimination. Different people get different treatment basing on their socio-economic status and influence. The poor and children are sidelined in favor of the rich and influential.
7. Expression theatre for personal grudges. In some churches, personal misunderstandings are put in the whole presence of the congregation, in the pulpit. This has degraded the church’s holiness.
8. Disunity. There’s a lot of divisionism in the institution of the church. The different denominations insult and de campaign each other yet Christ sought to have a united entity.
9. Worldly businesses. Church leaders have entangled themselves in ungodly activities that have made them too busy to fully commit to spiritual work.
10. Embezzlement. Some church leaders have failed to make proper use of church collections and have diverted them to their personal interests. This has created mistrust within the congregation.
11. Materialism. Church activity now rotates mainly on making money. And this sometimes by illegal means eg smuggling, bribery etc. There’s also over emphasizing payment money in church.
12. Vague position on sex. The church has failed to come out-right on condom use as a way of fighting HIV/AIDS. They have instead continued to discourage it which is dangerous.
13. Sexual immorality. Some forms of immorality have been heard among church leaders including adultery, fornication, gayism which are acts against commandments concerning sex.
14. Power wrangles. There have been instances of struggles, sometimes deadly, for leadership positions eg for the Bishopship in Kigezi diocese in 2014. This portrays a bad image of God’s ways.
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