Jesus was not eager about escaping, he was not running to die and escape the earth. In fact he declared he could not be killed, he could only lay down his own life. What he was saying is that ‘I’m going nowhere until my Job is done’. That was the influence Jesus had in his days. Why are people who claim to follow him completely different from him? Many of his followers are dozing, hoping to die and go see his face. Can I shock you, Jesus is not eager to see your face. As a matter of fact, in heaven you will have no face, so you probably need to get your lazy self-up and begin to do what he told you to do. He said you can only be my servant (of use to me) if you keep (do) my commandments (what I tasked you to do).
Where then does the Church get her gospel of escapism from? When did we become indolent and selfish? Where did all of this crisis start? We already established that it was not from the disciples who controlled and managed their world. It was not from Martin Luther who shook is then known world also. It was not from John Wesley, Charles Wesley, Aimee Semple Mcphereson who invaded continents with hospitals and the best health care systems, standard and affordable education usually at no cost to the people as well as Christ’s power. Many of the pioneers of faith single handedly bore the burden of the economy of nations. It couldn’t have been from John the Baptist who by the way was not a Baptist, neither did he preach Baptism. Where exactly did things veer off and go wrong?
Let me take you on a little history and journey lane. Escapism came with the birth of religion. Religion was man’s idea, Christ was opposed to religion throughout his entire stay on the earth. Religion was his direct enemy. In fact religion sent him to the cross and fought against his legacy. Religion had so much power it controlled everything. It banned and stopped people from reading, religious leaders were the only ones empowered to teach. People were sent to monasteries and forced to learn the language of religion. Segregations began and atrocities were committed. This birthed the era of the dark age when unthinkable evil were perpetuated by religion and religious leaders. This continued to the era of ‘The Crusade’ when entire people of other religions were killed and wiped out by Christians. The Church excommunicated and killed many inventors and scientists like Galileo Galilei. Examples of others who were severely persecuted were
Michael Servetus (who first described blood circulation between the heart and lungs). He was burnt alive by the church.
Hypatia (renowned historian who was killed by a Christian mob, driven into a rage by claims that she was interfering in a religious dispute between the Governor and the Bishop of Alexandria)
Antoine Lavoisier(who first wrote the first list of the chemical elements – a forerunner of the periodic table and further found that about 20 percent of air is oxygen and that when something burns, it is actually reacting chemically with oxygen. Lavoisier’s theory of combustion debunked the then popular theory of ‘phlogiston.’) His head was chopped off by the Church.
Giordano Bruno(the view that the earth orbits the sun, and that the earth is not the center of the universe.More than this, he held the thoroughly modern view that distant stars are orbited by their own, possibly inhabited, planets. He stated that the universe is infinite in size and has no center). For his view, the Church burnt him alive also.
I can cite many more examples of how the Church fought civilization by their views of escapism. Religion in any form is extremely dangerous. Many intelligent and brilliant minds were severely persecuted, killed and all their research, works and publications completely burned.
This evil became hidden in the age of ‘The renaissance when there was more liberty for people to engage in knowledge. The church at this time completely lost her relevance because the people could now read for themselves. It was that generation that brought about the computer, the telephone, cars and automobiles, the printing press etc. However, the evil is only recently resurfacing with the advent of the Pentecostals especially, and several other forms of denominations who though may be different in form, yet possess the same ideology.
It is not uncommon now to hear many Churches oppose their faithful’s from doing business, from reading, from joining politics, from engaging in entertainments, from using gadgets, from the social media, from Facebook. They tell us to escape when they tell us to avoid movies, games, rap, friends and family, technology and gadgets, social functions etc. Many are asked to escape conferences, schools, relationships, travel, music.
We are called to invade, not escape. When people are taught to escape all these and many more, they are simply being returned to the dark ages. They are simply being tasked to stop using their brains. They are simply being oppressed and human nature is against oppression.
The Church must leave all her sophistication and return to the basics. The Church must understand she is on the earth for an assignment. You are sent to the earth on a purpose and on a duty. You must get busy with that and stop being eager to leave. Why anticipate what is definite when you have not completed your assignment, many people have not even found out what the assignment that was given to them is in the first place. Death is sure, don’t wait for it, get busy. Any man that is eager to die knows how to, it’s hypocrisy that is still keeping them from taking action and lingering around.
This message of invasion and occupation is urgent, it is now. It can no longer be postponed. You cannot appropriate what you postpone. You cannot fulfil what you defer. You cannot accomplish what you are not willing to do.
My sincere hope and prayer is that this lengthy write up makes the church or as many churches as possible reconsider her focus and begin to invade rather than willing to escape.
To a better world…