Way before I became what I am today—on a good day an atheist and on a bad an agnostic, I stopped going to the usual Sunday church while holding my belief in the existence of God intact. Therefore, it’s possible not to feed into the regularly church going inconvenience and still hold a good relationship with faith or God.
I’ve always not been interested in being part of the every day or night church service—but saw the need to be part of the regular Sunday visits. I saw going to church everyday as a total waste of my existence—unproductive way to use my time, far worse than watching some 1980 Kung-fu movie with poor English subtitles. So I usually did the latter when the family attended the many all-night and evening services.
Before telling you why I stopped going to the house of the Lord—saying so based on the Christian assertion, I think I should point it out that I admire the sense of community-ship the church offers.
I would love for religion to disappear or give way to reason and critical evaluation, but I wouldn’t want the many magnificent church buildings that hold a lot of history or the various religious texts that hold excellent literature relevance to be burnt into ashes. Perhaps, this is one of the many contradictions in wants; befitting the concept of killing the King while seeking to maintain the Kingdom.
Even until my days of enlightenment brought me to understand the hidden pillars of the God hypothesis and the strong relationship that have existed between the church and the masses right from the Palaeolithic age to present—I was very much aware we were not just put on this earth to spend every evening singing praises to a God. If that was the case, He would have kept us in heaven to do that. I was also taught the angels were already doing that and I was against duplication of functions; God must be too.
Now that I’ve established my honest appreciation of the church—to some extent, despite my total religious contempt, let’s look at why I stopped going to church and why you should consider doing that too.
1. Church Services Have No Real Religious Benefits
The Abrahamic God is everywhere and nowhere; and His eyes or ears catches everything. You do not have to be within any particular geographical proximity to worship him or for him to hear you. You can pray to him right from your toilet seat and He will gladly hear you—but whether he will answer you is at His own discretion. Your location of worship, prayers or demand cannot persuade Him in anyway to attend to your needs.
So what is the real religious benefit of going to Church every evening or Sunday? Why bother with the restaurant when the takeaway is equally fast, cheap and convenient, I wryly asked myself…
2. I Noticed the Huge Disparity Between the Leaders and the Masses
I hate to be introduced to injustice, especially when I cannot do anything to change the situation—and more so when those being held in the pit are tirelessly sweating to enrich those at the top. This is the appalling chain of relationship that exists in all churches and each Sunday that I attended, I went back home more upset with the church, especially God who has for many years been taking part in the con of robbing the members to feed the leaders—or let’s say, He has permitted this injustice.
There is no way that God is graciously blessing the leaders of the church to the overwhelming detriment of the masses, who bring their little coins each day to Him. I spotted the monkey business very quick but it took me time to find those who deserve to be blamed.
The Church perpetuates injustice, taking from the poor to feed its leaders—and I stopped going as an early sign of protest, against this injustice, the leaders and God.
3. Women Are Oppressed at Church
The religious bigotry of modern era is very much manifested at the church and right from childhood, I could not understand why women could not become pastors in the Church of Pentecost I attended. This is way before I developed interest in Law, a discipline that has introduced me to Gender Equality, Tolerance, Equality before the Law and other remarkable human principles.
Today, I am proud that I am not part of an institution which continues to treat women with gross contempt—hold women back from deserving positions for the mere fact that they are women.
There are a lot of positions in church that women cannot occupy and it’s not principled on merits. By virtue of the fact that they are women, they are seen as inferior and cannot occupy such seats. It is hard to accept this but the smart ones among the many have already figured it out. The institution called Church is patriarchal, has been and will forever be.
Why should I support such an institution to continue in its disrespect of women when equally is even being fought for at various non-Godly places like work and schools?
4. The Church Became Very Noisy…I Didn’t Want to Become Deaf
Perhaps out of old age, the Judeo-Christian God has some hearing problems and without any scientist in heaven to fix Him a common hearing aid, worshippers have to SHOUT to be heard. If this is not a plausible explanation of the situation, then why is it getting louder and louder—capable of breaking your ear drums?
Call me weird; far better than being offensively ignorant about your health needs to regularly be part of the destruction of your own ear drums—or promoting area nuisance. I’ve never been to the night club and I do not intend to ever do so, for this same reason.
Therefore, to make it a regular torture enterprise and walk into a room full of shouts, unregulated drums, amplifies and clapping—made worse by those who speak in languages they themselves do not understand but expect a God to understand, something had to give me a good boost.
And there is nothing of a boost worth more than my sanity—and hoping to have my ear drums working when I turn 70, so I had to quit the regular visits.
5. The Church Has Lost Its Social Decency and Relevance
The calmness and decency of the church milieu has evaporated with time—as many people have turned their regular visits into fashion exhibition, ranging from the dirty nun to the swaggering pastor.
It started with the show-off-ness of expensive clothes and today, it has reached a new height of showing of a little cloth but more skin.
To be frank, I wouldn’t be shocked if a survey shows that there is more decency in dressing at the club compared to the house of the Lord, made worse by floor sweeping weaves and giraffe eye-lashes.
The social decency and relevance of the church being a supposed house of the Lord has been lost and today, it is a place to find the next booty call, the perfect speed dating zone for many single women—and a place for the rich to exercise dominance over the poor in the world of high fashion.
6. I Didn’t Need Anyone to READ and Interpret the Bible for Me
In the early days of Christianity, the church was a must go place to listen to the word of God because you couldn’t easily have the texts at home—as the leaders kept the texts and possibly, a lot of people could not read or write.
With a high education and a dictionary on my mobile phone, I do not need an illiterate pastor to read something in plain English for me—or sought to interpret basic English sentences for me.
Many share my view on reading the bible yourself and since the church is aware of this development, they’ve brought in a new catch to keep the people coming by saying; you need the Holy Spirit to help you understand the Bible.
I understand a lot of people are dumb but if you can read a newspaper and understand it; you do not need anyone to explain the sentences in the Bible to you. What else could; thou shall not kill mean apart from, you should not KILL?
To me, it’s a total insult on my many years of education and pursuit of knowledge. If I can work out complex calculus—and can read and understand Chinua Achibe’s ‘Things Fall Apart’, I surely should be able to read the Bible and understand it, unaided by some people who mostly have less education or no degree in English…
7. The Church Became the Biggest Gambling & Scam Yard Yet Paid No Tax
I perfectly understand that money is needed to run every institution and even if the monthly dues that the various members of a church paid in their individual units were not enough to take care of church’s affair, the once a day ‘collection’ should have settled things.
It’s either the church’s fund is being mismanaged or it’s become excessively expensive to run the church because the leaders are living like Saudi Arabian Kings, with piles of gold bars under their beds.
The usually Sunday collection was kept in place but many other means of taking money from the pockets of the already poor congregants were developed. I found this offensive, inconsiderate and to some extent, extortion…
If the leaders were not cunningly rally the Monday’s borns to empty their pockets after having gone through 3 ‘collections’ already, they were selling some bottle water 100 times its normal price.
I thought Jesus Christ got offended when he saw this happening in the church—but today, it’s the order of the day in most churches. From tooth pick to anointing oils, everything is being sold and advertised. Even the pastor’s wife uses the church platform to advertise her new diapers she is selling…
I figured I did not belong to any of these places—and not that I was dumb to be handing out money. I just couldn’t take the compounding anger as the many poor were being tricked, lured and falsely promised so that they would hand over the little money they have in their savings.
And even if you did not have the money, you were pressured to make a pledge. At this stage, if you think the Wall Street executives are monsters, try the schemers at the church…
Above it all, though the church remains the richest institution in the world, it pays no tax—and this really upsets me. It takes from the poor and yet it is never ready to give back.
I realized the church is more of a business than an institution dedicated to giving out any real hope or salvation to its members. A lot of time was spent by the leaders preaching about prosperity with little or no time dedicated to what the church ought to stand for…
So I gave up on the church, way before I gave up on God too. I am not asking you to give up on God (not yet) but the church is pretty much a waste of your time and your money. It offers you no real benefits but takes a hell lot from you.
It’s time to think smart! Find me a church which does not do any of the above and I will gladly attend just to enjoy its sense of community-ship, occasionally…