The Church has been infiltrated by men of reckless political behaviour that causes discomfort and annoyance in others as politicians seek to prey on the seemingly gullible constituency.
These shenanigans have swayed men of the cloth from their primary calling contrary to Biblical teachings.
“Be as wise a serpents, but as humble as doves” says the Bible But history chronicles a litany of clergymen that have fallen by the way side, straying from their God given assignment for wealth and power thus sowing seeds in the midst of thorns
“We are not born again, to suffer again”, clergymen proclaim while crafting dirty tricks to enrich themselves at the expense of a needy constituency.
Some clergymen chant political party slogans and publicly declare allegiance to political parties during sermons in sharp contrast to their divine calling.
Political campaigns are held in the name of the Lord. ‘Thou shalt not mention the name of the Lord in vain’.
Church leaders have been caught up in messy political situations that destroyed their churches and reputation.
Politicians see the church as a reservoir of untapped mileage therefore cultivates a sudden interest in the church particularly for support from congregants.
And as the nation gears up for election, the church has become a haven for politicians and political parties seeking legitimization.
According to Christian Alliance Acting director Josphat Amuli, men of God who have been run over by politicians have missed it.
“Those pastors campaigning for or on behalf of political parties have missed it. How can you have salt tasting sweet?” Amuli said in reference to a verse which portrays Christians as the salt of the earth.
“The church should be apolitical, it does not exist to campaign and support any political party,” Amuli added.
The story of disgraced rogue clergyman, Nolbert Kunonga exemplifies a man of the cloth who dared play a political hand in matters purely divine.
But his pro -Zanu PF stance could not deliver him from thousands of Anglicans who were baying for his blood as an overwhelming support for Bishop Chad Gandiya carried the day.
It would seem unbelievable that this was the same man who lambasted the so called opposition parties, right in the house of God – a consecrated holy place.
Kunonga’s political inclination gave him false immunity and he never dreamt that the long arm of the law would catch up with him.
Does this reveal how the church and its leaders ought to behave? Should they meddle in politics?
Destiny for Africa Development Network leader, Obadiah Msindo openly declared his allegiance to President Robert Mugabe creating public chat that he might have been deployed as a religious intelligence officer to sample churches’ political leanings.
He is on a raging holy crusade indeed.
Msindo tried to vindicate himself during a “housing scheme” meeting in Bulawayo by saying that he does not only support Mugabe, but could cast out demons as well.
He was supported by a retinue of praise and worship choristers clad in Zanu PF party regalia that sang: Vhangeri rababa ndichariparidza chete (I will preach the Gospel, no matter what) and one wonders whose gospel he is preaching.
Amuli condemned ‘men of God’ who pride themselves in dabbling in politics, instead of preaching peace.
“We are not oblivious of the fact that politicians are clandestinely using the church for political campaigns,” he added.
Amuli said his organisation discourages participants from wearing political party regalia during meetings so as to remain apolitical.
“If you allow anyone to campaign in the church, it’s no longer a church,” Amuli added.
“We discourage people with party regalia at our meeting, we ask them to leave. Politicians are however free to come to church to be comforted and counselled, so that is why churches should always be neutral,” Amuli said.
Bulawayo based Pastor and Civic Society activist Anglistone Sibanda says church leaders should be actively involved in politics.
“Church leaders should be actively involved in governance issues and stop the cowardice of looking the other way when things go wrong because Christianity ought to address social issues too,” Sibanda said.
Sibanda added:“The notion of confining church leaders within the four walls of the church is wrong because our Lord Jesus addressed social issues like marriage and divorce. Church leaders should not be timid when it comes to addressing social issues.”
Sibanda, a human rights activist, strongly believes that the church has a crucial role to play in the murky politics of Zimbabwe.
Pastor Levi Moyo of the Apostolic Faith church condemned church leaders who are involved in politics, saying they have lost their higher calling.
“Pastors should take their positions and pray for the nation and not run after politics. Those who are doing it have lost their divine calling,” Moyo said whilst addressing a gathering in Kezi on recently.
The church commands high respect from politicians and as such has attracted many politicians, though some have ulterior motives.