Features: War Against God? By Julius Kwesi Hamenoo

Chinese officials burn bibles, destroy crosses and force Christians to renounce their faith amid a massive religious crackdown,.....

War Against God?

Julius Kwesi Hamenoo was born and raised in Takoradi. As one who is down to earth, he is clearly self taught and has with great interest read books which help to build strong character. This comprehensive reading has endowed him with a deep sense of simplicity and humility gracing him with strength of character and the tendency to question some accepted norms. These have served to fuel the critical, yet powerful observation of his environment portrayed in his writings.

That was the heading of a print news item on social media; precisely “opera mini”. I read the story and kept my cool. Social media has a way of twisting stories to suit a targeted end. So I kept my precious little trust to myself. But I had my ears assaulted this afternoon by the words of some religious puritans whom I happened to stand by who had also read the story. They were discussing it with passion and had grown furious because of the actions of the Chinese authorities toward Christians. My emotions began to swell within. As if the bibles and the crosses that had being burnt were their personal properties. 

In the advent of COVID 19, they would presume that God has visited his wrath on the Chinese for preventing Christianity in their country. But as soon 

as they would have said that, just so soon would they have had reality check on them from what’s happening in Europe and now the whole world. As it stands now, it’s the scientific community that is expected to come out with a vaccine for COVID 19. Not Preacher men or the religious community. These religions fanatics have arrogated to themselves God’s avenging army. Judging and condemning opposers of their dogmas. If they could fly to China, they would have flown there to fight against the authorities who did that. You can’t imagine the twist on their faces while they were cursing and condemning the actions that had been taken by the Chinese officials in that regard. 

Initially I wasn’t bothered about what a sovereign state had to do to protect, preserve and enhance the lives of its citizens. Especially the Chinese, who have lately proven to the world that it’s possible to become a superpower after closing their borders to the rest of the world for 50plus years or so, and sacrificed their comfort and pettiness as a people to pursue scientific and technological knowledge in order to empower themselves economically. 

Here they are today, entering into every nook and cranny of the world with their superior knowledge to do business with other superpowers, and exploit those that know how to pray and worship God even more than those that brought their Holy books to them. The Chinese have also over the years strategically positioned themselves in a way that make them attractive and profitable for the rest of the world to go there and do business. And the African is sitting here, under the shade of our polarized and indoctrinated minds, propagating pressure on our governments to turn our lives around in four years, while praying to God to rain miracles on us from heaven. Same mentality we had when the Portuguese, Spaniards, Dutch and the British and French stepped on our shores. 

The superior knowledge of the Chinese in science and technology has given them the wherewithal to produce goods and services to meet both the taste of the rich, and the unnecessary material demands of the poor and visionless who prefer being slaves to enduring suffering in the interim, in order to establish a firm basis in scientific and technological know how for their wellbeing and empowerment. 

How should the African expect to be regarded with this kind of mindset? Until we accept that we are a bunch of ignorant people, who truly desire to reclaim our God given status on this planet, we should forget about rising above the dross in our dustbins. Where any selfishly thinking people will dump their refuse. We have made ourselves carcasses, vultures, hyenas, foxes and maggots will surely feast on us. 

And now everybody is trooping to the Chinese in their country in order to learn their language and make ends meet thru super normal profits on the importation of their less expensive goods. Yet these Chinese don’t know Jesus, let alone pray in tongues to cast out demons among themselves, or argue about the collection of tithes from their hopelessly poor congregation in church and on tv? 

In Ghana for example, while our offices, markets space and living rooms are now flooded with Chinese goods, some Chinese have followed us into our hinterlands with the aid of some shortsighted greedy chiefs and queen mothers and elders and some politicians, to denigrate the very fiber of our wellbeing and tradition by contaminating our rivers, degrading our lands, destroying our forests and taking away our gold, while dumping chemicals into the very source of what has sustained us all these while. They carelessly do these to our future generations because some few greedy elements among us need money today. Even when a political courage has been mustered to place a ban on the degradation of our lands and rivers and forests to restrict Chinese infestation of them, for our own better future, we are threatening to gather votes against such a rare and bold political will. Is this the effect of democracy on illiteracy or ignorance? 

Now the question is; what do we usually do with the money that was able to procure our conscience to care less about the future of our children? If the Chinese had that kind of values and standards; where money was all that mattered to them before national interest, would they have been able to come this far? And yet they are not a Christian nation as we claim we are. The tenets of their belief have brought them this far. Giving loans and grants to other nations to shore up their economies for the welfare of their people. Isn’t that a noble gesture for which God will be proud of? 

And where has the doctrines of our belief brought us to so far? We would rather create fear of punishment from God in the hearts of our congregation just to extort money from them—cheap means of making money. How could we feel obligated to export Christian values instead of goods and services to China in order to make some economic gains and improve our pathetic lives with? Will we rather beg Jesus the Christ to grant us money to travel to a non Christian nation to school and work? What kind of God’s people are we who always make decisions that seems to make us good servants instead of good leaders among our peers? 

Christian nation indeed! 

We should rather bow our heads down in shame, for disappointing Jesus the Christ and the Prophet Mohammed (saw) too. 

Why wouldn’t they burn bibles and crosses? They see clearly the kind of fruits we bear by being fundamental to our religion, and so they know us. They don’t want to be like us. They don’t want to divided themselves into different sects of religious isms and schisms and fleece their poor folks, who can’t bring their minds together in reconciliation after the shredding of their religious texts to pursue a common God. They don’t want to speak in a language they don’t understand. They prefer to demonstrate to God that the brains He has given them was all they needed. They prefer to be spiritual, not religious. And they would now thank God because they are givers to humankind, not receivers and beggars. 

Aren’t we always out there, with our arms stretched, and our knees bent, of course with the Bible and cross in one hand, while the other hand expectantly awaits to be given grants and loans from a people who don’t read the Bible? Those we go to for handouts used their brains and worked harder to achieve their dreams. They pay their taxes instead of tithes and collections. They have less churches and more schools. They study science not religious history. They do not pray in tongues and supplicate for money and expect miracles from God. 

Had they been reading holy books and praying all these years like we do, would they have been the superpower that they are today? Don’t we run to them to borrow money from and connive with to exploit our own selves and even deprive our children of their better future? See what they do to our environment in our hinterland—destroying the ecosystem with impunity for gold. Of course aided by avaricious and myopic natives in higher positions. A people that go out of their families, join force with strangers, accompany them back home to cheat their own people, just to make money, through the destruction of their lands rivers forests lakes and even minds—must have been having some convoluted values indeed. No wonder we are not admired wherever we go. Why should anyone want to emulate the values and standards of such a people? The basis of our so-called religious values, education, culture and traditions are not worthy of copying at all. Profound decisions and choices are almost always determined by spiritual, cultural and educational values. Clearly we don’t have any now, we have been robbed of ours. We have already sold all of them for glitz and superficial class statuses. Apart from the Blackman, no other people do these to themselves. A spell has been cast on us to remain in slumber and keep dreaming of a place in the sky when we die. 

Their burning of bibles and crosses, if we should think about it deeply, without the emotions of religious fanaticism, is a clear message to us to begin to appreciate the use of our Brains too. It’s the only act that when we engage ourselves with, could please our God so much. Because we would have been making the best use of His most great and complicated creation: the Brain. For, not using our brains in order to acquire knowledge and understanding of how things work, will inevitably perish us. We have to deliberately cultivate the habit of enduring the discipline required to deny ourselves some comforts and pleasures, and bring God from the sky and make Him worthy of a resident within us instead. This way, we would have respect for each other and ourselves and would abhor stealing and hating and betraying and backstabbing and killing each other for nothing but a delusional sense of well-being. 

They say, once bitten twice shy. And we also say, that, the fool’s testicle is never stepped on twice. But what do we see? Our testicles have been trampled on in all these years with the intent to pound it into paste. Yet here we still sit, even offering it on marble stones to be crushed into juice. Without seeing anything wrong with it. Is it all because we love God better than our oppressors do? 

The British and the French and others have subjected us to such inhuman treatment for all these years. We never learned anything from them except reading the Bible and praying in tongues and getting poorer and poorer and ignorant and hypocrites and sycophants and backbiters and mediocre and wicked and blind and mendicants and killers. 

And now here comes the China man. They may not need to colonize us while we slept. Right under the sun, we are offering them ourselves and our future to be hammered into pulp with their sledge yellow hammer on our black anvil. Even though we are superior when it comes to the possession of natural resources, but because we lack the knowledge and understanding of how things work at the subatomic levels, and are not prepared to sacrifice some comfort and time to develop our brains along that line, we don’t understand why they are burning bibles and crosses and discouraging Christianity in their country. If we have nothing worthwhile to concern ourselves with, let just recognize that God is more than capable of taking care of His world than we ever can. If we have had half their kind of courage, maybe we wouldn’t be the victims that we are today. 

What reason have we given for them to want to follow our religion? Is it the opulence our religious leaders display in counting their so-called blessings and naming them one by one? And infecting us with the belief that God needs our money before giving us His blessings? Well, the Chinese have managed to organize and consolidated themselves into a huge country, with well over one billion population. That gives them a numerical advantage only India can rival in terms of market size for economic gains for themselves and even for all. Who says everybody in China speaks mandarin? But they are wise enough to know that lumping themselves into a unified society was far better than remaining in a fragmentation that would only make them vulnerable and fit for exploitation, conformity and subservience. 

Let us at least try to be truly smart. And its requires stubbornness and sullenness to remain in focus under difficulties and misfortune. Look! The Chinese have made their leader to stay in power for life, if not for a long time. What does that tell us? Let’s collect ourselves, devoid of the petty desire to lead a pack of indoctrinated people, make irrelevant the different languages we speak, wipe out the artificial borders created for us and forge a united front in order to extricate ourselves from economic, religious and political slavery. 

We should not be comfortable as Africans, fragmented into anglophones and francophones and Arab. Christians and Muslims and tribes and ethnographic whatever, fighting each other with weapons made by them, because we speak different languages that are not ours and pray differently to a God given to us by them, even though our continent is the richest with the most precious commodities which we could cultivate, develop and trade with. Couldn’t this invariably make us the richest people on the planet earth? What should God do for us again? 

Instead of teaming up to exploit such natural resources to our advantage and benefit, there we are, busily cheating and stealing from ourselves and buying from economies that are already richer, while making ours poorer and poorer. We are no more reading our history in our schools. Even as supplementary readership. We are rather actively contributing to making the African irrelevant and inferior on the tapestry of human history. Our tv stations are replete with sensational nonsense from other cultures to steal the minds of our young ones. Telenovelas that portrayed the values and standards of other cultures is what excites us. We don’t admire ourselves anymore, because pettiness, mediocrity, and gross idiosyncrasies have become the hallmark of our society. 

And we say they shouldn’t burn bibles and crosses and pull down churches? Why shouldn’t they? Is it because we think we love Jesus and his cross more than them? Then lets pray for Jesus to give us wisdom, love and the discipline to transform our minds and lives in order not to go begging in the midst of our great natural resources. If they offend God, let’s allow God take care of them. 

Our business is not to judge and condemn but to make God proud by using well what He has given us: the brain. Use the brain to set ourselves free from both mental and economic slavery. We are the only ones who can free our own mind and make our lives better. What we need is the courage to endure while in the pursuit of good dreams. We need leaders who won’t steal our money to procure their comfort and sensual pleasures at our expense. We need followers who would embrace the defined path with patience and strength of tenacity to realize those dreams in the long term. 

Other than that, let’s shut our mouth and watch them burn bibles and crosses while we waited to be their slaves afterwards, because we need money and material things from them. After all where do we make more money these days than our places of worship. Jesus has become the selling commodity in our churches. The church makes more money than our socioeconomic goods and services do for our continent. I have no figures to prove it, but before this assertion is challenge, try accounting for all collections and tithes and dues and consultation fees and pastors appreciation money and birthday gifts, etc every day of worship and see. That’s what I’m talking about! 

Julius Hamenoo observes.