Stealing from alleged thieves and turning the house of prayer to a den of thieves

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The recent robbery in a church in Port Elizabeth, South Africa not only shows the desperation and audacity of the men of the underworld; it is equally a blunt ironic and indeed, biblical case of converting of the House of prayer to a den of thieves.

According to the report, four men came to the church looking for the local pastor, whom they wanted to pray for them for success in their upcoming court appearance. However, in the absence of the pastor, the alleged thieves instead pulled their knives and stole an undisclosed, a mobile phone and laptops.

The police are investigating the armed robbery.

As sad as it may sound, the robbery seems to fulfil the biblical warning as well act as a boomerang for the church leaders, whom many have accused of making a mockery of the scripture. Imagine a situation whereby the men and women of God who are supposed to save souls only end up becoming a parasite on the same souls they come to save. This seems to be the perfect description of what transpires in our various societies daily.

Recently, the reputation of our religious leaders has been severely tarnished, and some would say, irreversibly damaged, around the world for a simple reason: most of the religious leaders have, sadly not lived up to their expected moral standard. Moral decadence is the order of the day. From child molestation to shameless sexual abuses and exorbitant luxury life standard, most of the so-called men/women of God have, in fact, failed woefully to defend the moral duties entrusted in them. There is nowhere in the world, where these religious charlatans in sheep’s clothes operate with alacrity and utmost impunity than in Africa.

From being some of the richest, most flamboyant, extravagant, choosy people around, a great number of religious leaders have turned religion into business and family enterprises, feeding fat on the gullibility of their zealot followers and cashing in millions for the church leaders. Flying their own expensive private jets (those who don’t have a sweet mouth or are yet to make good use of it to accord them a jet, go for flashy exclusive cars) and living in a mansion are synonymous with religious leaders. Donation of your hard earned money to the churches or mosques to make God increase your wealth and take away problems, sicknesses and other social and health challenges in your life has become part of life in Africa. Using the money they stole (sorry, they received as a “donation” from the congregation), some of the so-called men and women of God build their own expensive and well-equipped universities, schools, hospitals, most of them, even better than government-owned institutions.

What is so devastating is that these religious leaders can be heartless and insensitive to the suffering of their gullible followers. Who feels it knows it. While condemning the thieves who attacked the church in South Africa, it makes one wonder what made the thieves choose the church as their target.

It takes a thief to know or catch a thief. Now that the thieves had decided to steal from alleged thieves, perhaps the alleged thieves would have the opportunity to experience what their duped followers go through. Who feels it knows it indeed – especially when it comes to turning the house of prayer to a den of thieves.