CORRUPTION IN CHURCH ITS CONSEQUENCES AND WAY FORWARD
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Among the major institutional problems that have impeded sustainable development in churches and Nigeria as a country is corruption, which is embedded on poor national, religious and cultural orientation. Thus, this work attempts to examine some of the vices associated with corruption in churches and indoctrination in Nigeria, and their implications for national development. It was discovered that the trajectories of religious expansion vis-à-vis corruption in the country are complementary. This study argues that the overbearing influence of religion on national values is responsible for the widespread corruption in Nigeria at large. The most recent antidotes at combating this menace is the bedrock of this study
TABLE OF CONTENT
Table of content
1.1 Background of the study
1.2 Statement of problem
1.3 Objective of the study
1.4 Research Hypotheses
1.5 Significance of the study
1.6 Scope and limitation of the study
1.7 Definition of terms
1.8 Organization of the study
2.0 LITERATURE REVIEW
3.0 Research methodology
3.1 sources of data collection
3.3 Population of the study
3.4 Sampling and sampling distribution
3.5 Validation of research instrument
3.6 Method of data analysis
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION
4.2 Data analysis
1.1 Background of the study
Corruption is a product of greed, an act which deviates from the formal rules of conduct governing the actions of someone in a position of public authority because of private motives such as wealth, power or status (Ackerman, 1999:2; Khan, 1996:2- 3). It entails a pervasive failure to tap self-interest for productive purposes. Hence, corruption whether in the public or private sector, symbolizes an abuse of institutional trust for private gain. Nigeria has a total land area of about 923,768 sq. km and its coastline on the Gulf of Guinea stretches to about 774km. Its international land borders are shared with Benin, Niger, Chad, and Cameroon (Ikelegbe, 2009). The country has 36 states and a Federal Capital Territory. It is an obvious fact that corruption is a major problem confronting sustainable development in Nigeria. Some public office holders embezzles public fund with impunity. In the private sector, insider-trading and gross abuse of office is the order of the day. The recent crisis in the Nigerian banking sector is a testimony to this fact. The Nigerian state is presently experiencing a pandemic of corrupt practices in both public and private sectors. Many cases of corruption by political office holders have been reported without effective prosecution. This is a reflection of corruption emanating from the Judiciary. Corruption has become the culture of many Nigerians from the lower to the upper strata of the society. The Transparency International – 2011 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) measures the perceived levels of public sector corruption in 183 countries and territories around the world. According to this survey, Nigeria ranked as one of the most corrupt countries in the world. Christianity, Islam and African Traditional Religion (ATR) are the three major religions in Nigeria. These religions are not homogenous since they have several sects and cells characterized by unique modes of worship and practices. Hence, within Christianity can be found Catholics, Protestants and Pentecostals while among Muslims can be found Sunni, Shi’ite, Wahhabis, and the Suffis (Abdul-Rahman, 2004:92-126). According to Islamic tradition, it is interesting to note that Prophet Muhammad predicted the division of his followers into sects. A Hadith – Mishkat I: 169-170 posits: Abdullah b-Amr reported that the Messenger of Allah said: There will certainly come over my people what came to the children of Israil as closely as one sandal resembles another, so that if there was any of them who committed fornication with his mother openly, there will appear someone among my people who will commit that. The Israilites were divided into sects and my people will be divided into sects. Each of them will remain in the fire except one sect. They enquired: O Messenger of Allah! which is that? He said, That one on which I and my companions stand. Corruption is one of the biggest obstacles to fair and equitable economic development and social justice. This is a cancer that plagues the world. The problem affects the North, South, East and the West. It is like a rising agent, Corruption is therefore like yeast in flour altogether mixed up and difficult to separate from each other. This became the global note and is as old as the first societal projects. Corruption appeared at the time society first organized public institutions to preserve and develop services. It was in fact already present in antiquity. Cicero cited it in a book titled Pleasure and Truth: There are men who all sense of proportion is unknown: money, honor, power, sensual pleasures, pleasures rules pleasures of all kinds, finally, they have never enough of anything. Their booty dishonest, far from diminishing their greed, rather excites: men sunk to lock rather than form.15 In France, the first codification in the fight against corruption is an order of King Philippe le Bel dated March 23, 1302 in which he ordered his bailiffs, provosts seneschals and the rules for their decisions cannot be tainted as irregularities or favoritism. However, the adoption of the Code Napoleon in 1810 marked the introduction of final heavy penalties to fight against corruption. From the Bible (Prov. 14:28; Acts 4: 13) God is interested in Church growth and the piety of every member of the Church. Thus, Christians are supposed to showcase all the embodiment of godliness. The rise in the number of Churches in any society therefore, should correspond with developing interest in the fear of the Lord for a godly living in order to ensure societal development. Christians are supposed to live exemplary lives (Mat. 5:13; John 1:5) that should warrant a just society. That is why the above scriptures describe them as the light and the salt of the earth. From all indications, the reverse seems to be the case in Africa and this is increasingly becoming worrisome to scholars across the continent.
- STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
There has been a remarkable increase in the number of Churches and also a commensurate rise in corruption and other social vices. It is assumed that if Churches are increasing, its positive impact in the lives of the people should be greater than when there were few Churches. The researcher therefore wondered if the Church growth and rise in corruption are coterminous in these societies. It is in view of this that the researcher intends to investigate the consequences of corruption in churches.
- OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The main objective of this study is to examine the consequences and way forward of corruption in church; but to aid the completion of the study, the researcher intends to achieve the following specific objectives;
- To examine the causes of corruption in churches
- To examine the effect of internal corruption on the growth of Nigerian churches
- RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following research questions were formulated by the researcher to aid the completion of the study;
- Are they causes of corruption in churches?
- Are there effects of internal corruption on the growth of churches in Nigeria?
- How can corruption be curb in churches?
- SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
It is believed that at the completion of the study, the findings will be of great importance to pastors and church management as the study seek to examine the consequences of corrupt practices on the body of Christ, the study will be of importance to the entire christiandom as the study seek to explore the consequences of corrupt practices and act of Christians and the perception of pagans on Christian religion who involves in corrupt practices and the signal it send to the faith, the study will also be of importance to researchers who intend to embark on a study in a similar topic as the study will serve as a reference point to further research.
- SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The scope of the study covers corruption in churches it consequences and way forward, but in the cause of the study, there were some factors that limited the scope of the study;
Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
Inadequate Materials: Scarcity of material is also another hindrance. The researcher finds it difficult to long hands in several required material which could contribute immensely to the success of this research work.
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview).
1.7 OPERATIONAL DEFINITION OF TERMS
Corruption is a form of dishonesty or criminal activity undertaken by a person or organization entrusted with a position of authority, often to acquire illicit benefit.
Christian Church” is an ecclesiological term generally used by Protestants to refer to the whole group of people belonging to Christianity throughout the history of Christianity
Context of religion, one can define faith as confidence or trust in a particular system of religious belief, within which faith may equate to confidence based on some perceived degree of warrant
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