Tithing: How financial breakthrough steered controversy
Financial breakthrough has been a recurring topic in Christendom , where pastors and church leaders convince followers that by paying their tithe and offering, their prosperity will come.
But some Christians have always asked; ‘where do our tithes and offerings go?’ How does giving to the church make us wealthy? They have also wondered if their hard earned money is being used to enrich others.?
There is no doubt that in this present world, there is a brand of false prophets who own and create churches for the purpose of getting rich and leading other Christians astray by preaching false doctrines and padding the bible with their versions of what they preach as truth.
Although the subject of financial breakthrough cuts across denominations and spreads around countries, the Nigeria’s situation calls for urgency. The call for churches to pay tax comes to mind when you see pastors and church leaders living above men.
Some Nigerians who spoke on this matter shared divergent opinions. While some believe that whatever they drop in the ‘offering basket’ goes directly to heaven, others think the pastors should give account to God.
Some other Christians would not want to know how the money is spent while others said anything given in the church is used for maintaining the pulpit and the priest.
Some also noted that the Tithe controversy has ruined the minds of some Christians, making some to be afraid to pay tithe to their various churches.
Speaking, Mr Jude Adetomi said,”At this point, it’s quite alarming, I don’t even know if am giving for God to bless me or I’m just adding to someone’s private jet money. If really it’s the church, why can’t they take all that money and give the needy instead of buying jets with it? Are we not supposed to be blessings to others? “he said.
One Mrs Clara Kachi said, “Personally, I believe that I’m doing the right thing by giving, and if for some reason the pastors decide to pocket the money, it’s between them and God but as for me, I have done what is right in front of God and will receive his blessing. “
According to a Controversial On Air Personality (OAP), Daddy Freeze, who claims to be unveiling some of the false teaching taught by pastors, “ Tithing is an unprofitable venture because its payment brings curses!
Quoting Gal 3:10, the self-proclaimed preacher maintained that payment of tithe was an anti-Christ doctrine, adding that Jesus and his disciples never collected such.
Reacting to this, a Pentecostal pastor of one of the new generational churches said that the opinion that those who tithe are under a curse is a misconception.
He said,” We are not under the law but under grace. Tithing is a covenant of prosperity, it is not compulsory, it is for people who have the understanding of the covenant.
“Tithing is a form a giving, the covenant of prosperity is ‘give and it shall be given unto you’, so when you give alms,to the needy, your parents, you also need to give your tithe because it is actually very important as it opens the door of blessings.”
Nigerians react to current trend in make-up, costume
Over the years, the fashion and make-up industry has grown to be very lucrative. The demand for make-up and fashionable clothing has also continued to rise.
Like Rachel Zoe, an American fashion expert, said, Style is a way of expressing oneself without uttering a word.
The fashion trends in Nigeria are quite unique with rich and colourful designs one wouldn’t want to miss. The fashion industry has really evolved with more exposure, standard and style.
The make-up industry isn’t left behind as well. There has been a high surge in the number of make-up products all over the country. Young women (and in some cases men too) have resorted to studying the art of make-up and the number of young people applying to learn make-up has increased significantly.
90 per cent of the trends in fashion in the country are as a result of Western influence on our African society. Nigeria wants to be a part of the global community of fashion and as such follows and adopts trends from the western culture. Some of these trends are good while some do not even sit well with the idea of ‘being Nigerian.’
While some Nigerians are embracing these trends, others have a different mindset about it. Having spoken to some group of persons about the topic at hand, this is what they had to say;
A make-up artist, Kelvin Demigod said; “The development in our make-up industry has undoubtedly contributed to improving employment.
“There is no denying the disappointment in the fact that our Nigerian make-up industry has allowed the western concept of physical perfection to influence our cultural standards of beauty.
“At the end of the day, make-up is life and it helps some ladies suffering from lack of confidence. It helps to make them feel beautiful and good about themselves therefore we have to embrace it.”
An older man, Mr christopher Ikechukwu, on the other hand is of the opinion that women don’t need make-up to feel confident.
Ikechukwu said, “I personally do not like it when ladies put on make-up. You can apply very little and you’d still look beautiful. Heavy make-up just makes one look scary.
“So I think that women are more beautiful without all those painting on their faces.
“What if there was nothing like make-up, what will all these sisters do?
”When it comes to fashion, some people are very simple and really don’t have time to follow all these trends while some will do literally any and everything to be up to date with each and every trend.”
Mrs Precious Aliko, a fashion designer stated that fashion is a way of life and there’s a saying that says “dress the way you want to be addressed.”
She said; “In my opinion, people should be able to express themselves through fashion. Following the latest trends on fashion, it is a way to let people know that as the years go by, the world is evolving and that staying the same isn’t exactly embracing the evolution.”
A supermarket owner, Adams Wadata said his is not happy with what the world is turning into fashion wise.
Wadata said; “It is really sad to see how our youths dress this days, back in the days, you will see people dress decently but these days, almost every girl wants to show vital part of their bodies to the public.”
He added that he is not a fan of current fashion trends and the government should do something about indecent dressing in the Nigeria.
President Buhari’s honour on MKO Abiola: a reward or plea for votes
President Muhammadu Buhari took the decision to recognize June 12 as Nigeria’s Democracy Day; this is a change from the original May 29.
The President further conferred national honours on Chief MKO Abiola, the adjudged winner of the 1993 presidential election, his running mate, Alhaji Babagana Kingibe and Gani Fawehinmi.
This is to the surprise of many Nigerians who did not expect such gestures from the President Buhari. Some have declared the issues of June 12 as dead and gone when former President Olusegun Obasanjo failed to do the needful. Obasanjo was expected to honour Abiola for two reasons: 1. As a Yoruba president, the same tribe with the late MKO Abiola, Obasanjo surprised many by ignoring Abiola and his family. 2. Obasanjo and the late politicians shared almost the same political history namely imprisonment. They were both victims of military highhandedness. It would have been a form of solidarity for Obasanjo, also a former Head of State, to honour his kinsman.
But the point of discourse is about the honours on the politicians by President Buhari. Nigerians have expressed diverse feelings about the gesture. While some are looking at 2019 to have motivated the goodwill, some have only but praises for the Federal Government, while others are of the opinions that even if Buhari’s intentions may seem opaque, he has made a bold step. According to them, all Nigerian leaders in the democratic era, failed to treat this big issue of injustice.
An Abuja-based social activist, Samuel Olu, in his view, said, “Nigerians can easily be deceived. That is the truth. But do you blame them? They hardly see such gestures from their leaders; that is why when they see one, they embrace them with both hands.
“This is Buhari’s third year in office, why did he wait until June 2017? Well we shall see.”
But that is not exactly the opinion of a top political journalist, Kyrian Obikwe, who believes that, “Whether the President did to seek reelection or not, the truth is that he has done what many people could not do. Nigerians, especially the South West can only appreciate him.”
Mrs. Joy Chikelu, a civil servant, said that, “President Buhari did this to smoothing the grand for his second term.
“He (Buhari) declared to run in the next election and is now looking for how to placate the regions. So I’ll say that this is one of those ways.”
Well, to those who do not understand Nigerian politics or those who may pretend not to be following political atmosphere from 1996 till date, the truth is that we will keep doubting until 2019 comes and goes and the politician will rejoice again having successfully used Nigerians.
Nigerian politicians have mastered this way of winning the hearts of the electorates when a general election is close, especially those of them seeking second term in office. We witnessed during the last administration of President Goodluck Jonathan. It was either they reduced the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, popularly known as petrol or they start repairing dilapidated roads, or repainting school buildings, or visiting states they had neve visited. Nigerians, being a people that do no demand so much, are easily deceived.
The conferment of honour on Abiola has changed the opinion of many Yoruba people about President Buhari, believe or not. We have followed South West politicians like the ever critical former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode. One can easily detect the change in his opinion of the President. The Ekiti State governor, Ayodele Fayose, in a swift reaction when the first made the pronouncement, lauded Buhari for the gesture. He even slammed Obasanjo for refusing to honour their hero.
If this one gesture would melt the heart of these two politicians, it would penetrate more in the ordinary voter.
Judging from the past experience, one would authoritatively say that Buhari will do more of this gesture. He would touch the South East, the South South and the middle belt. He has record of all their challenges. He may not be able to solve all of them. But he would certainly do the needful. But is Abiola’s honour a reward, or a plea for votes.