Most of us have said these things at one point or the other, but they are not true and could reflect a mindset that desperately needs an overhaul.
1.The first is a very common one, ‘I am going to Church’ you probably are still saying it, but biblically speaking you don’t go to church, you are the Church, that is if you are a follower of Jesus Christ, so it is biblically more correct to say ‘I am going to worship or service etc’ . Is this important? Yes, very much so, while the place of worship is to be respected, the people who are the Church should recognize who they are and walk in a way that is worthy of their identity as God’s special people, His house.
So next time remind yourself when you are going to a worship service, that you are not really going to Church, the Church is coming together.
2. Number two is a real clanger, spiritually that is, ‘seeing is believing’ this one requires a mindset upgrade and very fast too! Jesus said just the opposite for His followers, believing is seeing, that is you have to believe first before the ‘manifestation’ of the object of faith. The book of Hebrews (11:1) says
What is faith? It is the confident assurance that something we want is going to happen. It is the certainty that what we hope for is waiting for us, even though we cannot see it up ahead. TLB
According to Jesus this assurance is based on His word to us, so next time you are in a ‘dark’ place remember to believe then see the ‘light’
3. Now if you are a Nigerian you will recognise this one ‘Do me I do you God no go vex’ this is actually saying that God does not get offended when we retaliate for wrongs done, really? Surprise, surprise somebody, God does get offended when we retaliate for wrongs done to us, ever heard the saying ‘turn the other cheek’ well that came from Jesus, he said ‘
But I say: Don’t resist violence! If you are slapped on one cheek, turn the other too.
Matthew 5: 39 TLB
He didn’t stop there he went on to say ‘love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven’
Matt 5:44-45 NKJV
Revolutionary isn’t it? Retaliation is very toxic to your spiritual and mental health.
So the next time you are tempted to ‘do your own back’ (retaliate) remember the words of the greatest revolutionary of all times.
4. This next one is very interesting, I wonder where it came from, in fact I remember my mum lecturing my siblings and I on this very important virtue, she would say ‘cleanliness is next to godliness’. Growing up I took it as the bible truth but really that statement can be found nowhere in scripture, this is not discounting the importance of hygiene, but next to godliness?
Maybe she meant holiness is next to godliness, but. So parents next time you give your children a much needed lecture on cleaning up after themselves, please don’t tell them cleanliness is next to godliness, they just might read the bible themselves later and find out that statement is scripturally incorrect.
5. Heaven helps those who help themselves, this last one was usually said to ‘encourage someone to get of their backsides and put themselves to work’ very understandable but really very unscriptural.
It is tricky explaining this but actually heaven actually is available to help those who can’t help themselves, those who find themselves overcome or overwhelmed by their circumstances.
One of the greatest limitations to divine interventions is an attitude of ‘I can do it all by myself’ does the help of heaven discountenance personal effort? No! It simply leans on heaven for help.
The Apostle Paul described this attitude by his own experience
But because God was so gracious, so very generous, here I am. And I’m not about to let his grace go to waste. Haven’t I worked hard trying to do more than any of the others? Even then, my work didn’t amount to all that much. It was God giving me the work to do, God giving me the energy to do it.
(1 Cor 15:10-11, from THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language © 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson. All rights reserved.)
The lesson is heaven helps those who look to heaven for help.