Religion according to the dictionary is: The belief in and worship of a supernatural controlling power, or a particular system of faith or any practice to which someone or some group is seriously devoted. There are several religion existing in the world today but this article will dwell on the two widely accepted religion “Christianity and Islam“.
As a christian, i was made to understand that God created the world and all that is in it. He made us all equal and commanded us to go into the world and multiply as well as to love every other being as we love ourselves. Growing up as a kid, i used to have the notion that God and Allah are different but as years rolled by and kids became boys, boys became men, i realized that they are one and the same person but christianed differently because of religious differences.
I might not have the facts to go into the details of the discrepancies between the christians and the islamic group but as a christian, I learnt that the greatest commandment God [Allah] gave to us is to never worship another God beside him and to love our neighbours as we love ourselves (Matt. 22:35-40).
If in all the 10 commandments given by God, the above two are the greatest and if God and Allah are truly one but differentiated by religious belief, why then do we have so many trouble in the world today?
As a christian, i really do not know what the Islamic belief is but most of my muslim friends have concord to the fact that God and Allah are one and the same person. Am trying my best here not to stress on this issue as i might not know when i will offend God but my point here is, why is Religion bringing us so much pain? You will agree with me that ovet 60 percent of the problem in the world today is as a result of religious differences.
Putting the greatest commandment into perspective, one would realize that it is all encompassing covering all other commandments in God’s list of dos and don’ts. When you love your neighbour as yourself, you wouldn’t steal from him/her, when you love your neighbour as yourself, you won’t lie against them nor will u kill that neighbour or do anything that will hurt them. Life is simple, just love your neighbour like you love yourself and everything will be just fine. But man being a disobedient creature from time immemorial once again choose to disregard this priceless commandment of God.
Without much exaggeration, the Churches and Mosques in this world should be more than half the population of the world put together. The most painful part of it all is that crime rate, hatred and all other evil vices is ten times more than the population of the world. This brings to mind theses all important questions…what are our religious heads and leaders doing? Why is it so difficult to love our nighbour? Why kill people? why lie against people? Why steal from people? Why enrich yourself from other people’s wealth? Why discriminate other churches/religion?
In as much as i can’t say much
about the islamic belief, i do not think any God [Allah] will command you to kill the neighbour he has once commanded you to love. The ISIS, BOKO HARAM and other Islamic militant groups believe that killing people takes them to heaven and sadly, some of us have been brain-washed to believe this evil deed.
Back to the christian faith, some of our bishops, pastors and other church leaders have established churches in all nook and crannies of our neighbourhood. There is virtually no street in Nigeria today that you wouldn’t see a church. Some chuches even go about house to house preaching the gospel of love and salvation and inviting people to church. Inspite of all these, the hatred for our neighbours is speeding up rapidly every other day.
I have sat down, put my mind through some reasonable thinking and even though i can’t categorically say some of these churches and religious leaders are contributing to these hatred and crimes we have all around us, i think some of their activities have proven beyond reasonable doubt that they are here just to enrich themselves rather than teach and implement love and morals into their members.
The armed robbers, kidnappers, 419ers you see in the dark sings and dance with us in church on sundays and during our weekly activities. They hear all the gospel we preach but still they stick to their evil deeds. Does this mean religious leaders are not doing enough? My answer is YES!
In as much as i agree that the devil is real and is bent on destroying mankind, God has also made us believe that with him we are safe. We should run to him, call on him, seek him rather than riches and wealth as this is the reason for the hatred and crime in the world today. I know someone will say i am beginning to sound like a clergy man.
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These days nobody cares how you make money as long as you are spending the money on them. Our religous leaders accepts all sorts of donations from all sorts of people without questioning their source of income. They [Religious Leaders] live in mansions, drive classy cars, fly on private jets while most of their members barely get food to eat. They collect offerings, tithes and other donations to build big schools and luxurious accommodations in the name of their church and charge outrageous tuition fees and rents which members cannot afford for their wards. These current trend in religion especially christianity has made some of our young ones see churches as a profession or a source of income and this is why there are churches everywhere today.
In as much as i want to agree that these are signs of the end time as mentioned in the bible, our religious leaders need to sit up and try to right these wrongs that religion has caused us. They should return our churches back to the days where it was the citadel for morals and love. They should emphasize on love for the neighbour much more than they ask for donations. They should give more to the needy and less priviledged ones in their midst. Our leaders should encourage and contribute more to the education of the youths and guide them against crimes.
Lastly, if loving our neighbour is the second greatest commandment on earth, then we should stop the discrimination among churches and focus on loving the people around us.
Let Love Lead!!!
Anthony Orevaoghene Asiemo