Anna Hazare and the Church

Shyju Mathew

"Experience the Word of God, in the power of the Spirit."

August 24, 2011

This is a guest post by Blessen Varghese, an ex-journalist of The Times of India, who is now working as a content editor with an IT firm in Mumbai. Blessen is passionate about working for the Lord among the youth and alongside his father who is in the ministry. He also writes a Christian blog: Oasis. He is on Twitter as @blessenvargs

‘I am Anna’ Gandhi caps are in! They’re crying “revolution” everywhere. Many have tagged this as “the second freedom struggle”. The tag may seem over the top, but no one can deny the fact that a certain Anna Hazare from a remote village in Maharashtra has managed to stir up the entire nation of India like no other leader has post-independence!

Even as we were driving to the hall for the final session of what had been three powerful and Spirit-filled days, one could not help but notice the check-posts put up by the police at some junctions across the roads in Mumbai.

My friend revealed to me that the reason behind this unusual presence of police across the road on a Sunday was Anna Hazare himself. His call for country-wide protest against corruption and to bring about a strong Anti Corruption Bill (Lokpal Bill) had resulted in thousands (and at certain places, lakhs) – most of them youngsters – coming out to the streets shouting slogans and asking people to be a part of the movement.

It captured headlines in the media and became the most talked-about topic on social media networks. Popular grounds and public places across the country saw myriads of people who wanted to see change in the country’s way of handling corruption.

Coming from a journalism background, I’ve been following the Anna-campaign closely that has now moved onto its second phase: pressurising the government to accept the ‘Jan Lokpal’ (civil society’s version of the Lokpal Bill). As we sat in that final session, one couldn’t help but think hard when Bro. Shyju drew parallels to Anna’s campaign and the current church.

Are there any parallels between Anna’s campaign and the current church? Here are a few points that we, as Christians, should ponder upon:

– When there are revolutions taking place across the length and breadth for a justice-filled, corruption-free India, what about the Church? Why is the Church silent when she knows the real King of Justice?

– It is NOT Anna Hazare who can cleanse India entirely. It is JESUS, the King of kings – on whom there was no charge; on whom there was no sin; who did not get corrupted by the world – who can free this great nation and the world of its stains.

– It is NOT the Jan Lokpal Bill which can free India of its real dirt! It is the WORD of GOD that can lead this nation to a spotless path.

– It is NOT  Civil Society and the protestors, who can make India fully free of corruption! It is the Church – the body of CHRIST – you and me – believers not corrupted by the world – through the power of the Word of God that can bring freedom and fairness to the country.

– Should it not have been the fasting and praying of the Church that turns the nation’s attention towards the ONLY solution?

As “wake-up” calls echo across India, I think it’s high-time the church wakes up to The Call. It’s time for the Body of Christ to unite, get to their knees and start praying for the true King of Justice to be revealed to our nation! Wake up Church to wake India up!

Lift up your heads, O gates! And lift them up, O ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.” Ps 24: 9

How is your church responding to the Anna Hazare situation? Should we as Christians join the protest? What is your stand on all this? Discuss below.