Okay, usually we do not write about ministers who seem to be doing the right thing, but until two Sundays ago, one of our journalists came back and informed our head editorial department about an Apostolic bishop she used to regularly watch. It was already difficult for her to do so, since his church Mount Zion Apostolic seemed to be following the ways of the modern church, having services in a corporate fashion while allowing a secular atmosphere. She decided to watch him again two Sundays ago, because she felt she needed some spiritual strength. Quickly, she became discouraged when she overheard him say, “for those of you who are skipping to pay your tithes and offerings when I’m not here, give more to make up for those lost times and don’t pay your mortgage, tell them you don’t live in the house and you have not lived there for three weeks and give us that money. Do you realize if you don’t give your tithes and offerings we may have to close down” Allegedly, she overheard those words coming from this so-called Apostolic and Pentecostal man of God, Bishop Lambert Gates and turned his services off for good.
Close down? That sounds like a business. The black church is so greedy for money, even in this recession, what would possess them to start persuading their members to do the wrong thing? Didn’t the black church (especially the holiness Pentecostal folk), used to care about saving souls? Since the corporate way was discovered back in the early 90s, it seems like there is no return. Those who used to have an orderly traditional style service like Bishop Gates seemed more righteous and more about miracles, those miracles to trust God when you are short on money, not do something that is going to put you out in the streets, homeless. When you get homeless, the church wants nothing to do with you. So, why forced people to give when they do not have it or they have just enough to pay their bills?
This is not a Christian blog, so we have no regrets on reporting stories about the ungodliness in today’s church, black or white. Our journalist was very disappointed in Bishop Lambert Gates, because he used to be so different and preached holiness than the average minister of today. Gates now seems like a follower, instead of the leader he used to be . Part of the time he is not preaching, especially now that he has two churches, one in Indiana and the second one, in Detroit. Half of the time, his praise team sing and perform like they are on American idol with no sort of feeling that touches your soul. Now it seems as though the American church world is re-probated and really have not regrets of who they hurt or offend. It’s this selfish mindset that has occurred over the years, you take care of the first family and church staff, before your care about your family, including yourself. What sort of God is the black church serving these days? Have they forgotten how their ancestors were delivered from slavery and bondage?