By Augustine Ehikioya
To fight crimes and criminality among Christians, the Founder of Chukwuma Nwokocha Ministries, Pastor Chukwuma Nwokocha, has called on other church Pastors and Leaders to be bold by questioning any suspicious tithe from members.
According to him, tithes from killings and crimes are not good for the house of the Lord.
Pastor Nwokocha, Imam of Apo Legislative Quarters Mosque, Sheikh Muhammad Nuru Khald and the CEO of Matchmakers Ltd and Security Consultant, Shina Philip, spoke exclusively with Security Watch Africa (SWA) in Abuja.
He said “I will support the churches to question members who pay tithe higher than their known incomes.
“Once I see that you are supporting the church more than what you earn, it means you are getting the money from somewhere. So, the best thing for any Pastor or Church Leader to do is to verify and when you verify and confirm, you stop that.
“Call the person to order and begin to ask the person how did you manage to get this money. You must always find out where people get their money. You don’t support Church from money derived from killings or duping people, it is wrong.
“I have been preaching against that long time. I must know the source where you get your money, I must know what you are doing, I must know where the person is working. That is the way to monitor what is going on because you must account for every soul that comes to you. That’s the proper thing,” he stated.
On his message to Christians involved in crimes and those planning to go into it, he said “I will warn them to stop this kind of lifestyle. It is a lifestyle, it is a character. If they stop, they can really make the same money if they do what is lucrative.
“One thing about people is they don’t want things to come gradually into their lives. The most important thing is for them to stop and repent from this kind of things they are doing. Because if they continue, it will lead them to doom.”
Sheikh Muhammad Nuru Khald said he is ready to punish any of his members found to be involved in crime.
“I am ready to punish anybody who is contributing negatively to security of Nigeria because we are to work with the security agencies and report anybody who is trying to become menace to the society.”
He also called on Muslims to remain security conscious and continue to work for peaceful Nigeria.
“Muslims that are not into peace-making, peace-building and peace process, I am inviting them to be security conscious and to start working for peace because there is nothing that can work in Nigeria or anywhere without peace. Let’s embrace peace,” he said.
For engaging in false preaching and indoctrination fuelling crimes and insecurity in the country, Shina Philip, called for any caught fake Pastor or Imam to be named and shamed.
According to him, many quack and unqualified Pastors and Imams are behind the wrong indoctrination pushing some Nigerians into crime.
Even though the Holy books preach peace, he said, many members of the various religious sects engage in non-peaceful activities and crimes as a result of the wrong preaching.
Mr. Philip also maintained that the problem the Nation have with the various religious sects has to do with ignorance.
He said “I think that the problem that most religion sects face, especially their members, is that of ignorance. And if you have an Holy book, the book has been declared Holy and that means, it has good messages to offer to people, which is why even in the Christian sect, the gospel is referred to as good news.
“So if anything is good, if the Quaran is good, the Bible is good like any other religious book is good, they will offer something good. Then where is the problem, what is the problem.
“It is time in our society that when a fake Imam is caught or a fake Pastor is caught, just like you capture a quack Doctor, declare that such a person as a fake Imam has just been caught or a fake pastor has just been caught or a fake this, not just tag him an Imam has just been caught or a Pastor has just been caught.
“As such rubbishes it and then it tends to affect those who are following because they think if a Pastor of a particular sect has done this, they too can derail.”
He called on religious leaders to teach what the Holy books are saying.
“Teach it, offer it, serve it the way it is without your own self interest,” he stressed.
He added “The menace we have by way of messages today is because some of them are not even qualified to lead the people they claim to lead regardless the multitude that follows them.”
Quoting Karl Marx, who said religion is the opium of the people, he said he believed there is a vacuum in man that only God can occupy.
“So whether you are an atheist, whether you are a Christian or Muslim or whatever, there is a place for God.”
Stressing that it matters which spiritual table anyone is dining on, he said “If you are dining where ignorance is being served, naturally you will purge. There are a lot of Nigerians purging today because they are served rotten beans.”