Apparently, Zimbabwean challenges are caused by Christians, more than by the corrupt politicians. The Christian community supposes that God hates sinners. But God loves sinners, desiring that they live longer, hoping that they might turn away from their sins:
Ezekiel 18:23 “Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked, declares the Lord God, and not rather that he should turn from his way and live?” (ESV)
The next verse is frightening, as most Christians are not aware of it, supposing God hates sinners?: Verse 24:
“But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die.” (ESV) (Emphasis mine)
This agrees with what Jesus said:
Matthew 12:31. “Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come” (ESV)
Let us now put everything into perspective. What did Jesus mean by blasphemy against the Spirit? From verse 9 of the same chapter we notice that the Pharisees had accused Jesus for healing on Sabbath day. It is unfair to condemn the seemingly hardheartedness of the Pharisees who were faithful law-keepers. They sought to please God, walking according to His statutes; one of which was to stone a man violating the Sabbath law (Numbers 15:32-36).
However, the demands of the New Testament are interesting when looking at what Jesus said in Matthew 7:1-2:
“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.”
Let us first consider the circumstances leading to Jesus’ warning against those blasphemers. Those Pharisees were using the Law to condemn Him for breaking the Sabbath law. They stood in the position of God, condemning their fellow (Jesus) who had violated the law by healing on the Sabbath. Bear in mind that Jesus took our curse upon Himself, redeeming us from our transgressions, both Jews and Gentiles alike:
Galatians 3:10 “For all who rely on works of the law are under a curse; for it is written, ‘Cursed be everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the Law, and do them,” vs. 13 “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree’ (ESV).
But how were those Pharisees in danger of blaspheming against the Spirit? The Pharisees stood in God’s position, when condemning Jesus for breaking the Sabbath, yet only God is qualified to pass fair judgement. Jesus demonstrated the fairest principle of justice by dying on our behalf.
In Ezekiel 18:24 we saw how God treats those practicing injustice:
“But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live?”
God reverses the judgement, where one judges another person, according to Matthew 7:1-2. By judging another person, one would be conducting injustice. All of us have sinned and deserve condemnation (Romans 3:23). Only Jesus, was qualified to take up God’s role of judging, without blaspheming against the Spirit.
The act of judging is reserved for God only. Now, let us look at who exactly should be responsible for Zimbabwe’s problems? The Biblical answer is found in Matthew 5:14. It is careless to bestow that responsibility on President Mugabe and his unbelieving government officials. The darkness disappears only where there is light, not the other way round.
Instead of condemning ZANU PF, Christians should take full responsibility. Christians have hidden their light under the bushel, since 1980; supposedly enjoying in the comfort of not taking responsibility?
Taking full responsibility does not necessarily mean supervising the politicians. But it means taking blame for not shading light among the governing authorities who grope in darkness. As long as the light-bearers go off-duty, the sinful politicians grope in darkness, resulting in the existent problems.
Disorder results where there would be no-one responsible for restoring order. Christians should know that Jesus is the only answer, in terms of restoration of order. True Christians represent Jesus Christ in this life.
Instead of taking full responsibility on issues affecting the livelihood of humanity, Christians have bestowed it on President Mugabe. They cannot confront the Head of State, forgetting that Christians actually represent the one higher than the Head of State. How can darkness challenge the light?
The question is: Do we have true Christians in Zimbabwe, or we have pretenders? The answer lies in what prevails. Jesus said Christians are the light of the world. Wherever Christians exist, no confusion should be found. Two apparent possibilities are that either Christians support President Mugabe’s weird policies or Christians are a timid lot, fearful of losing their own lives.
Both these possibilities expose Christian hypocrisy. One cannot support Mugabe’s unchristian policies and be a Christian at the same time. Timidity is another sign of lacking in faith. A true Christian is one not intimidated by anything, as long as the intention is to save lives. Christianity and cowardice have got nothing in common (Revelation 21:8). By laying blame on President Mugabe, Christians are in danger of blaspheming against the Spirit.
Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing reliefs to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social instability. In a simple conversational tone, most Zimbabwean readers should find the book as a long awaited providential oasis of hope.
The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99
Also available as an e-copy at Lulu.com for $6.99