In our day, we face almost the same situation as the early church did. We are in a society where prosperity is seen as a sign of God’s favour, where people are lovers of themselves rather than of God, a society filled with necromancy, occultism, a focus on externals and many other things that digress from the gospel of Christ. The world cries out for authentic Christianity.
We must remember that although the externals are not the essence of Christianity, whatever spirit that is ruling our life will affect all we do, ie, what is inside us will invariably show up and show which kingdom we belong to. If you belong to Christ, what is the evidence?
God sent for the message of prosperity and divine healing however, we have taken it to mean that if you are not prosperous, God has not blessed you and have forgotten that the Christian walk entails suffering as well. It has also affected the body of Christ because we have a whole generation of Christians who expect prosperity as a sign of God’s favour and are not well grounded in the basic doctrines of Christianity. That has even taken away the impetus for evangelization.
Again, the whole crazy about prosperity has created a desperate class of people who feel their poverty acutely and may do anything to get out of it including homosexuality and “sakawa” further creating problems for the society. It is imperative that we pray for the poor of the nation but beyond that show love for needy Christians as well in order to avert some of these problems. The early church was noted for the love they showed.
Let us remember that we as Christians are the salt and light of the earth. We are the ones supposed to model behavior in the society.
In the early church, the message was entrusted to reliable/faithful men and women (2 Tim 2:2). The essence of Christianity is God being in control of our thoughts and aactions. (Matthew 28:18-20). We also need to study about the basic doctrines of Christianity (Hebrews 6:1-2). It is important for churches to have discipleship classes so Christians can grow.
Let us remember that the greatest evidence of Christianity is a changed life!