Saturday, November 24, 2007

Isn’t it enough to go to church?

Here is the problem with the modern church; she has bewitched herself that just being saved is good enough. Come to church in the morning but live as the cousin of the devil. Don’t worry; Jesus died to set you free. If that is all what it is then Christianity is nothing more than wishful thinking. Paul asks the Romans: “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin” (Rom 6: 1-6).
A couple of phrases need to be underlined in that passage. Shall we continue to sin because we believe that grace will abound? No, God does not agree. The writer to the Hebrews says: “For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins” (Heb 10:26). How then do we explain the excuse that it is ok to live in sin because we are saved by grace and not by works? The church today is more a den of thieves than a place of worship. There is no difference between churchgoers and non churchgoers. Both groups have their consciences seared with a hot iron that good is bad and bad is good.
When we believe in Christ we died to sin. So how come we are so active in sin yet claim it is normal. There is no compunction and indulgence. Why would the Lord save us only for us to still abide in the same old nature of sin only to be talking about Christ? Talk is cheap and anyone could do that but those who believe in Christ must do so in spirit and in truth by walking in the newness of life which mimics that of Christ. At that point though we are not perfect but falling in sin brings us remorse and repentance rather than mere aloofness because we are not perfect. Why is the church afraid to preach against sexual sins, lies, and thievery; in short the works of the flesh as mentioned in Galatians 5: 19-21?
As you invoke these passages the Christian 5th Amendment “Do Not Judge” is slapped on you face. How do we read a passage like: “I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat. For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person” ( I Cor 5:9-13 ). Yet even people with no love talk about showing love. How difficult is it to interpret this passage that do not associate with anyone who says he is a Christian but is living in sin? The Bible does not say do not walk with non Christians because you have to convert them. However, those who say they are Christians but refuse to change their lives must be avoided. That is the divine edict! Did God think that we are not perfect? Sure! But man thinks the verse should be revised or considered inconsequential. What turpitude of the modern church!
I do believe that though we are not perfect because we live in the sinful carcass yet our desire to live a perfect life could be exemplified in the way we treat sin and holiness. Be ye holy as I am holy (I Pet 1:16). Isn’t that a divine command? If it was impossible would God give us such a command? Holiness may not entail absolute perfection but it does involve dieing to sin. Christians must become allergic to sin rather than acquiesce to sin or make evil their bedfellows. That is why the church is empty; or dead and inactive like a graveyard. We need to wake up and live the life of Christ and walk in the newness of life in which Christ called us.

Until then, may God help us all in Jesus’ name!

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

Never Boast About Tomorrow


Each of us has boasted at least once in our lives for doing a good job. Some boast in their wealth and riches while others boast in God who gave it to them. At least, we all do boast. Some boast in how much evil they can commit. From conversation snippets, Dale Hausner and Samuel Dieteman, bragged about wanting to "kill 500," and how much they "loved shooting people in the back." Others like St Lucie boast about their country and its economy. Some boast of being supernatural powers. Maturino Resendiz the rail road killer who murdered more than 15 people boasted of being “half man, half angel, sent to earth by God to kill evil people, especially those who practice abortion, homosexuality or witchcraft”. He was later executed by lethal injection on 27 June, 2006 in Texas.
God who knows your tomorrow says boast not thyself of tomorrow because you don’t know what tomorrow would bring (Prov 27:1). You are like an axe in the hands of the Hewer and a saw in the hands of the Sawyer. The axe and the saw can only work the way the hewer and sawyer want them to work. Why do you boast when it is God’s gift of life that vivifies you? If God took away his breath would you not stink after 5 days? Would even your greatest lover sit by your side again? Oh man who are you? You boast all day long and despise others; you look at them as though they are nothing and rejoice when they suffer. You boast of knowing God but break the law every minute. What excuse do you give for sitting in that pew on Sunday, yet racism and prejudice are the rudiments on which you build your daily philosophy? How quick do mortals quickly forget the wobbliness of life?
On January 6, 2007 the bus carrying about 65 people from Dhaka to Chittagong crashed and caught fire. Almost all vanished in the thick smoke that meandered into the skies. May 6, 2007 Kenya Airways plane crashed in Cameroon killing all 114 passengers on board. None of them knew he or she would die on this day. Most like you had lofty plans, but they are gone. You see, you may be next! September 8, 2007, at least 85 pilgrims were killed when their truck crashed on their way to a religious festival. Most of them had vaulting ambitions just like you. Their epitaphs lie mockingly on the ground that swallowed them. Again like smoke they are gone.
Surely you have known someone who had a bright future but who all of a sudden either died or became a liability to themselves and to others. Such is the precarious nature of life. A day before Michael Bell was to marry his sweetheart girlfriend; the New York police fueled by racism sprayed his car with 50 rounds: hitting the car 21 times. He was killed on his bachelor’s eve. His dream for a honeymoon withered like a flower that grows in the morning and dies at noon. Tyler Howes: A 17-year-old senior at Mount Tahoma High School died on the day he was to graduate during ceremonies in the Tacoma Dome. He was minutes away from touching the coveted diploma, but death snatched him away from loved ones. You may be death’s next victim!
The world in which we live today is so parlous and perilous. You may leave today and never come back home. You may escape danger without but cardiac arrest within wins or perhaps some paralysis. If you should boast, let it be that if the Lord who gave you life wills. I adjure you to treat others as if someone else holds your tomorrow. For indeed, you do not know how your tomorrow will be. Are you still boasting?

Until then, boast not thyself of tomorrow for you know not what it will bring.


Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk.

God of Preferential Treatment?

People have always asked me why does God show preferential treatment. At first I quoted Psalm 115;3: “But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased”. At times I amplified it with Daniel 4: 35: “And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, what doest thou?” These answers sound too abstract for the sufferer because they paint the picture of a partial God who cares more about some than others. Why does God allow a molester to stay in church molesting kids for 14 years before he is caught? Why does this couple that goes to church daily has difficulties having a baby? Why does the guy who works so hard loses his job and home? In short; why do bad things mostly happen to good people? If God is not impartial why does he answer only the prayers of a selected few? I mean; why do good girls get played by bad men?
It is difficult to see those things happen especially when you hear sad news like the one I just heard that a girl I knew is now homebound paralyzed. Such beauty and good personality restricted to four walls and a bed. Prayers have been offered, tears have rolled down the cheeks of beloveds, wishes have been made, but all to no avail. How precarious is life, and of what good is it we soliloquize? Where is God in all of this?
Luke assures us that God is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34). Paul endorses it to the Romans (Rom 2:11). To the Colossians he tells them that everybody is equal before God because he rewards people according to their deeds (Col 3:25). When he visited Ephesus he told them to treat their subalterns well because God the Master of masters has no respect for persons.
As a recurrent principle, God through the mouth of Moses exhorts us not to respect persons (Prov 24:23). On the contrary today in our milieus the rich and powerful command more respect than the poor and weak. How do you treat people?
Thus this God who does not treat people according to their status will never leave you if you don’t forsake him (2 Chr 15:2). Even if your father and mother abandon you he will never abandon you (Ps 27:10). The fact that someone’s banana has gotten ripe before yours does not make them a better farmer. The fact that someone’s problems have been solved faster than yours does not mean God loves them more than you or that God has more respect for them than you.
God may allow a bad person in a place just so the person repents (2 pet 3:8-9). At times he speaks but man’s hyperopia and myopia blur his sight. For example marriage was made to efface solitude (Gen 2:18) but the medium for offspring (Gen 1:28). That is why they say Offspring. That is springs from marriage. Children in marriage are a blessing and byproduct of the marriage but not the reason why we marry. Nowadays mankind has tied both together. Marriage equals to children and in the absence of them hell breaks loose and the courts answer present with divorce papers.
Indeed, hard work rewards but vanity is a source for poverty (Prov 28:19). Some people work hard, amass opulence but try to live more than they have. That is where their sorrows begin and they think God has abandoned them. Some work too hard but seeing they are becoming workaholics and braggarts, God decides to let them lose the job to draw their attention: that of treating everybody as human; sometimes just to preserve their health. Indeed bad things happen to good people because that is how the good people will serve as testimonies to others who find themselves in bad situations. Times of trials and temptations are not times to abandon God but times to call on him for he will answer you (Jer 33:3).
Therefore, do not think God treats people with preferential treatment. It is aberrational for anyone to think that God will not hear them when they pray but will only do so when there is a special prayer from a man of God. Indeed there are some people more gifted in certain areas than others, but God hears the prayers of those who live for him. There is only one Mediator between God and man; the man Christ Jesus (I Tim 2:5). See, He has created all human beings equal; for they all go to the restroom. They all fart: loud or silently through their rectums. Those that wear pants do so the same way; leg first. As such if you think the whirlpool of life is taking you away, call unto Jesus he will hear you. Go down on your knees and pray. What is your worry this day? Go unto God in prayers and he will hear you. For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him (2 Chr 16:9). Are you one of them?

Until then, God loves you and does not show preferential treatment!

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Is the money we send back home (either to family or friends) tithing? Part 2

Tina,
You make me laugh. My mother called me from Washington that the pastor of the church she visited told the members to turn and tell each other that “if you do not give money to this church you are not a member”. I remember too that I was invited to preach in a church in 1990 and a Christian put 5 CFA and the pastor asked her to come and take her money away because it was a disgrace to God. I did rebuke the pastor and never returned to their church. I was invited to preach in another church and the pastor told me to preach on money because “this church does not give”. I accepted but when they called me up I preached on the “Passion of Christ”. His own non believing son who was visiting from the US gave CFA 200,000. They raised more money than they ever raised. When people understand the price the Lord Jesus paid for them on the cross no amount of money that they have will be too much for them to give FOR God. God loves a cheerful giver, so don’t give with a grudging heart.
Notwithstanding, giving to church is not synonymous to giving to God. Yet some people just have a problem with giving to God and to others. I give to people I don’t know and others I know would not pay me back because God is my Rewarder. There are many ways of giving to God. Opening your home to newly arrived to the West for free. I don’t mean this one that we tax people and ask them to contribute for the bills even when they do not work. Or just giving rides to people for free.
Sometimes I laugh when I give an American a ride, after they step out; they take a couple of dollars, and stretch them towards me. I always say “I am not a taxi driver; this is on behalf of God”. Africans and Americans tell me: “keep doing it the day they will kill you, you will learn”. I have never been aggressed or robbed while giving a ride to people since I am in this country. Needless to say I have given rides to more than a hundred people. God has always watched over his promises and I have been saved from many problems and financial difficulties that you can only see and know that” indeed God rewards givers. Are you a giver?
Giving to God is more than just giving to the church and the pastors. Christianity is more than just going to church. It is a life style that paints a caricature of the Good Samaritan; that of loving your neighbor that you see as you love God you don’t see.
My one time neighbor Ali is a Muslim. I am a specialist in Comparative Religions especially Islam and Christianity. So I know the ins and outs of Ali’s Religion. When DFCS seized Ali’s children for a stupid reason, I fought for him; reading his mails and assisting his lawyer with valuable information. As a matter of fact I was the one that directed his lawyer in filing for a certain motion which worked and his kids were given back to him after one year. Ironically Ali told me that Christians are usually not good but you are good. I laugh. That is the way most Christians think of Muslims.
One day I had some visitors from out of state and they wanted to shop. We surprisingly met Ali in the shop and he told us he wanted to give us breakfast and asked the visitors to take anything they wanted from his store. I was surprised how that driving to and fro court, and writing letters to court impacted Ali’s life. I did that because as a creation of God he should not go through what he is going through just because he does not believe like I do.
Tina, giving has many facets and I encourage Christians to explore all. That is how Christianity will shift from sanctimony and perfunctory services to practical Christianity. It is a shameful and wicked thing to be happy alone!
Until then, be a giver and it would surprise you what the Lord can do.

Prince and PA Hamilton Ayuk.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Should we expose the bad ones in our communities?

Mr. Nzama, questions like this seem to me like some tarradiddle because most Africans enjoy when westerners are swindled. How many of us did enjoy Ukpa’s “I go chop your Dollar”. It was put on You Tube in March 29, 2007 and it has 31,060 views. I am surprised you are still asking the question. We have been doing this in my Manyu community for long now. We call it the Name and Shame campaign. The Australian: Glenn Wilson has another one called the Hall of Shame (http://www.angelfire.com/dc2/glenn/shame2.htm ) where corrupt individuals are named and shamed and honest ones are elevated. I have no sympathy for gullible Americans: those ones who want to transfer money from Africa they never worked for and landed as victims of the con artist due to their own cupidity. If everyone who is approached for shady business reports it to the police there will be no victims.
Our people still cherish this type of behavior because the cozenage has great indulgence. There is no more or less opprobrium for chisellers. Those who try to speak are considered jealous; I mean jealous of crooks, swindlers and flaneurs parading as business men and women. They are invited in every party as grandees. We call them “ballers” as they stroll with such braggadocio of successful entrepreneurs.
Keep religion aside; this is lack of etiquettes and should be considered a societal problem. It is to the salvific estate of the community to report them because many people are losing trust in us like they have done with certain Africans.
I attended a staff development one day and during introduction I gave my name and told them I was from Cameroon. A lady exclaimed: “oh my God”! Then she placated us with some apology by explaining that she once had a nightmarish student from Cameroon. In short; I reminded her of her nightmares caused by that rascal. Poor me!
Mr. Nzama, suspicious activities should be reported to the police and criminals handed to the authorities. That is how we will clean our communities and regain the good name we had. It is not snitching or betrayal. I want to remind most of you that a good name is better than opulence. People should be respected and honored for their good name rather than their riches, education and skills.
Do not forget that if you do not teach your people etiquettes the state will help you in incarcerations. Which is better: to forewarn them or leave them till when the state takes over. We should also isolate them and take less interest in their monies. I have made it as a principle not to associate with riff-raffs and ragamuffins because if you are caught with them you could be considered an accomplice.
As to whether a Cameroonian can take the compatriot to court I think they should if there is no compunction and repentance especially when people try to swindle from you. The Bible refuses brothers in Christ from going to court and counsels us to accept to be defrauded. The term “defraud” there will be illustrated thus: if I was doing business with a brother in Christ and they later seized the business I will let them go with the business rather than go to court. As a matter of principle I do not wrestle for money; talk less of quarreling for money because the love of money is the root of all evil.

Until then, it is high time to cleanse the community.

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

Is the money we send back home (either to family or friends) tithing?

This question is a bit trickish but I will make an attempt. To a lesser extent it is not if we do not give as unto God. If we give to show off or for our personal developments like for your parents to build you a house.
To a greater extent it is when we consider the spirit of giving. If tithing is considered having the strength of creation ordinance then it cannot be considered Law. If it cannot be considered law then the spirit behind the gift prevails. That means; if giving tithes was not a moral law but a ceremonial law then it does not transcend cultures. If it is a moral law inscribed in the Ten Commandments then it should be honored by all generations. Looking at scripture again closely tithing is not a moral law and so does not surpass cultures. What transcends cultures is then the concept of cheerful giving.
That means it would be less Christian for you to leave a single mother trying to pay her bills to go and give the money to the church. The Bible questions our love for God we do not see if we do not love Man whom we see. It is sanctimonious for you to leave your relatives and neighbors in need just to give money to the church especially when the bulk of the money is being misused. Ministers are now richer then than Christians. I do not see anywhere in the Bible that the ministers should be very rich. They were to disengage themselves from the things of the world.
My former Bishop came one Saturday with the pretext to visit us. Our household gave the little church of 35 people $1000 each month. When he was leaving he told me that if I had the tithes for tomorrow I should just give him than bother myself to bring it to church. I told him I did not have cash and the rest of the people were not home. He told me there was an ATM around. So we drove there, I took money, and gave him. He then asked for the other guy who was nearby. I told him he was in the library doing some research. He followed the guy and asked for the money. Two days after, a member of our church came to me that the pastor entered into her apartments and dropped Victoria Secret lingerie. When I confronted the Bishop he told me the girl is beautiful but does not know how to dress so he wanted to teach her how to dress.
To solve this problem I told him I would not stop the other guys from giving because they do what they like but I will no more give all my tithes here. I began sending part home to pay tuition for kids who do not have, shared bread from Publix every Tuesday and Friday, and took fatherless kids from my neighborhood to places.
On the contrary a friend boasted to me that she had given thirty-one dollars ($31,000) out of her $200,000 as her tithes and offerings to Dr Dollar. Ironically her mother is living in Section 8 houses. Let me repeat again what James said:
What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone (James 2:14-17).
However, the bottom line is that it is more blessed to give than to receive. Some people are so needy and wretched because of selfishness. I want to challenge you all to sponsor each year in addition to relatives, a child you have never known rather than take all your money to church.

Until then, I hope I have tried to answer your question.

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Crab Department

They were ten of them
Three males seven females
One male with 5 females gossiping
In their art they weaved their magic

Did you see the Administrator?
He is a dumb ass like the kids
He never gives referrals
That is why the school is bad

Did you see Ms K
She dresses like the students
Her cleverage is all out
She is going out with B

Do you think C is gay
He walks like he is sick
What about G . She is divorcing
W was showing off and got hit by a car

One of them leaves to class
They take her down into pieces
The second leaves to class
The four shred her life in turn

Now they are left only four
A third leaves, the three tear her up
The fourth leaves and the two weave magic
The fifth runs to the restroom

The sixth is left by herself
Not having an accomplice
She turns to the aloof male
Oh, you are not from America

You know I am not from here
I don’t like her showing off
She thinks she is beautiful
What do you think? I don’t!

They tore everyone they knew
Like crabs they tore each other up
Until they had no one to tear.
It was the bond they had. tearing.

Hamilton Ayuk

Monday, November 19, 2007

Bridgette


Bridgette

She walks with a short pace
She Smiles with dimpled face.
Her name indeed was Bridgette
Then she vanished like the wind

I peered and felt her picture
I saw her body in great texture
Her physiognomy my preference
Then she vanished like the wind

Her education was impeccable
Her manners irreproachable.
She and Rosa pull like magnet
Then she vanished like the wind

They both live a simple life
They survived without strife
We sat and played together
Then she vanished like the wind

Crawls in her dance like a snake
Crawls for you to lustfully slake
Oozing out your impious libido
Then she vanished like the wind

We know not her whereabouts
We will search the Idaho mounts
Bypassing other shadows on the way
Till her breath like the wind does land on us

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

The Love of Bridgette


Perhaps your love is like hibiscus flower.
It has yellow, red and green colors
The yellow is like sun that shines hope
The red is fire burning with true love
The green is the fecundity of your love

Perhaps your love is like a house.
It has a floor for me to lay
Rooms to live in peace
A roof to cover my worries
A fence that shelters from wolves

Perhaps your love is like a football team.
It plays the offense for me to succeed
Its midfield manages my strengths
Its defense covers my weaknesses
As goalkeeper stops advancing ladies

Perhaps your love is like a school.
It teaches me how to love
As students, I learn from it
As administrators, it disciplines
As the custodians, it cleanses me

Perhaps no exchange for your love.
With my ounces and pints for your love
The faces that stare me are not what I love
Show me where to stand to win your love
Oh Bridgette, you have made me sick of love

Hamilton Ayuk

WHy?

Why do beautiful girls date crazy boys and church girls; rascals? Isn’t that the cause of their heartbreaks? Why does a beautiful church girl fall in love with a rascal who does not even mind her love? What a calamity! I look at my students and the most beautiful girls are dating skippers, trouble makers, and all sorts of people that I just want to say, "My friend are you sure you have made the right choice?" Why are tall men married to short women? How do they kiss? Would the woman need a little ladder or would the man fold like a plant during phototropism? Why do scientists always say stupid things in public? Why do poor people like to shop? Why do poor people always want to teach rich people how to invest their  money except their? Why is Math, Algebra and Geometry so difficult that they always give me migraines? Why do teenagers always think they know more than their parents? Why do even stupid students think their teachers are dumb? Why do some stupid people get hired as teachers? Why do drunkards always think they are too strong? Why has humanity feasted too much on illusion that reality has eluded it? Why is there a big difference between idealism and realism? Why is the former what you wish to have and the latter what you really have? Oh, I see! So why do people fear death? Why is there no one that is immortal on earth? Why do women fear aging? Why do women always think that when someone is looking their direction he or she is looking at them? Why do weak husbands believe their wives when they say they are the strongest men on earth? Why do daughters love their daddies, and why do the sons love their mommies? Do you believe in Oedipus and Electra complexes? Why does humanity always tilts towards the opposite? Why do females take too much time to shop or to dress? Why do men never ask for directions when they get lost? Why are latecomers the first to leave? Why do people who know how to write don’t know how to draw? Why do real speeders never get ticketed? Why is the law blind while the judges see? Why do you read but never write? Yes, why? Why are preachers ……..?

Until then, Why?

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

Friday, November 16, 2007

Have You Given To God If You Still Claim It In Taxes?

Ms Lum,
Considering that this question was asked in relation to the Bible I will limit myself to biblical sustenance because it would be a waste of time to argue biblical concepts with non biblical support. The Bible supports itself and does not need a walking stick. It is important to recognize that gifts, vows, freewill offerings and tithes were all different and practical (Lev 23:38).
Abraham began tithes and not the law as many claim. That was almost like the creation ordinance (Gen 2:22). Abraham began tithes by giving to Melchisedec: king of Salem (Gen 14:17-20; Heb 7: 2-4). Jacob continued the practice even before the law was instituted (Gen 28:22; Gen 35:7). Before it became a law (Deut 14:22) it was a voluntary act as seen in Abraham’s and Jacob’s actions.
Abraham gave tithes once because during that time it was a facultative act and despite giving his tenth of his spoils he then wanted to offer the greatest of sacrifices: his son Isaac. Such was the track record of a giver whose act was no more necessary to be proven; for it spoke for itself. When it became law: it was required per every income because Israelites had become selfish even unto God their giver.
Tithes are the tenth of your income unto God not to the Levites but unto God. The tithes would then be used for the Levites and the entire house of God so that there is no lack. (Mal 3:10). In Leviticus, God required the people to give a tenth of deal of flour. That translated to us would mean what you could afford as income.
Tithes were not just an Old Testament concept for they were given in the days of Jesus. Adoptively, He does not condemn it; rather, he condemns the spirit behind it as in the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican (Lk 18:10-14). Jesus neither denounced the exercise nor encouraged it. To Jesus, no amount of giving would outweigh a contrite spirit. With the advent of Jesus, tithes revert to the old position of Abraham and Jacob on voluntary basis but not annulled. That is why Jesus does not condemn them nor does he promote them. That means now the spirit behind the act of giving is what matters rather than the gift itself. As a result the widow’s mite is more important than the gifts of the rich.
In Numbers 18:21 God says he has given the Levites all the tenth in Israel for their services because the Levite did not have besides serving in the tabernacle. In modern organizations where the prelate has a salary or a job, then they are not required to partake of the tithes. Nonetheless, tithes are still required for the maintenance of the building and paying of the bills just like the tithes of those days were for caring for the temple and its necessities.
However, many churches and people are misusing Bible verses to motivate people to give. That is what I call Retiary Gospel. It is crookery when people use the Bible to deceive others into giving. Some even claim you must pay your tithes only to your church because that is where you are being fed. The Bible says bring the tithes to the storehouse of God (Mal 3:10). Your church is not the only storehouse of God. No Church holds the truth. The church (building or denomination) is just a lighthouse or a bulb holder for the Christian. As a matter of fact, churches today are more than dens of thieves rather than the house of God. I visited a church and I do not know how the pastor arrived at tithes and offerings from the passage she was preaching. Lord have mercy!
If you give and expect back, then you have already taken your reward. Since you cannot refuse money from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) then you should take the money and redonate it to a place where you will not be reimbursed or rewarded terrestrially. God loves a cheerful giver so don’t give with a grudging heart. God does not love sumptuous giving; gifts to win the acclamation of mortals; those are rewardless (MT 6:1-6). many people will not give to an individual because they will not be able to claim it back in taxes.
Jesus seems to favor cheerful giving over compulsory giving (Mt 10:41-42). Paul too adopts the same position (I Cor 9:17). People should give according to their means and necessity of those who need. It is wrong for anyone to take a loan to give to the church. It is wrong for people to make monetary pledges beyond their means. It is equally wrong for ministers to deceive the Christians into giving monster seeds rather than muster seeds. God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor 9:7) because it is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20: 35). What good is it to refuse a needy neighbor money to pay his or her bills only to give tithes in church? Give to him that asks you (Mt 5:42).
The whole idea of gifts was for those who did not have (Esther 9:2) and not an exchange of gifts like we do nowadays. Most Americans give to the church because they will collect part of it in their taxes. Those have already received their rewards. They will be rewarded by the little that they could not claim from the IRS which is not even their widow’s mite. If they so desire to give their widow’s mite then they should give with their right hand where their left hand will not see.
Until then, it is honorable to give for God’s sake than for the praise of mortals.
Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

“Pastor, what is Emotional Honesty?”

“Pastor, what is Emotional Honesty?”
Though I am on an internet hibernation I will like to respond as fast as people. If you have an urgent question please call me at 678-368-4762.
Emotional honesty is to tell people how one feels without hiding anything. That means; if you don’t like what your co-worker does, speak it to their face rather than gossip. If you don’t like what your friend is doing rebuke them face to face rather than tell a third party when you have never informed them their action was hurting you. Or perhaps because you don’t want to offend people so you let them continue with their foolishness though you think they need some etiquette.
The world in which we live today does not like people who say what they see. You may be considered rude or Mr. or MS. knows it all. The irony is that every man or woman wants an honest person for a life partner. So if you want an honest person where will they exhibit that honesty if they cannot tell it in your face? I have been young and now I am old but one thing I have learnt is that honesty begets honesty and crookedness begets crookedness. If you are honest you will get honest people around you and if you are dishonest you will get dishonest ones.
One cannot fix what they don’t know is bad. If someone does not know they are hurting you they may never stop hurting you. You may think they should know that but we are different and perceive things differently. What may be offensive to you may not be offensive to the other.
I used to hurt a neighbor without knowing I was hurting her by criticizing the evil in the society until the day I paid her electricity and gas bills when they were cut off. She had five kids with six different men. I mean that there was one kid to whom she attributed two fathers plus the other four known fathers. The kids were frequenting my apartment more than they used to. So I asked them what happened to their house because they have never been that frequent in my house. They told me they cut-off their light. She owed three months of light and gas. I called the light and gas companies and cleared the bills. That is when she came to my house to confess how she could not stand me. You sounded like you don’t like us. With time she realized that I have learnt how to make a dichotomy between philosophy and real life.
Take for example; when I say Americans should not go on missions I do not mean all Americans. I mean those who have never witnessed to their friends and families in the US. Those should not start in a foreign land.
If we would share our emotions with people we may end up realizing that the bulk of the time our inferences have been bad and they have caused a prejudice in our decisions. Indeed many people do not like generalizations but we have to differentiate between a generalized statement and when someone is referring to you as an individual. When I say African women who go abroad end up being fat does not mean all are fat. I mean you will still see the tadpoles. If you are a naturally skinny woman then why worry; why feel bad. If you are fat and you do not feel comfortable with your weight trim down those extra pounds. But except you tell someone how you feel they may never know they are hurting you. You must communicate your emotions exactly as you feel if you want to be happy and be treated fairly. That is emotional honesty!

Until then, may we only meet honest people.

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk

Monday, November 5, 2007

What is True Religion?

One can go before God with all the burnt offerings he or she likes: myriads of rams, sacrifice even his or her first born for his/her transgression, go to church seven times a week, eat all the communion he/she wants, sing and shout like a humming bird, but without justice, mercy and humility with God his/her religion is empty.
One can be too religious as he/she likes; build all the seminaries he/she wants, give tithes and offerings as the church so desires but do not bridle his/her tongue, and deceive people then his/her religion is vain because true religion is to visit the fatherless, widows in their afflictions and to be nonconformist to the world.
Many ministers see wrong things going around them: perhaps perpetrated by their cronies and kinfolks, but they acquiesce to them. Isn’t it a shameful and terrible thing for the goat to bleat at strangers while the guard dog sits on unconcerned? If ministers do not cry against evil committed in high places, who should? I thank all those who speak out, and I hope all the Christians in and around the world speak out against any evil on any group of people.

Southern Cameroons Should Keep Their Schools Closed For Their Own Good.

I hear talks of schools reopening because children can no more stay home. Is it that all those who were arrested have been released, or is...