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ZimDiaspora: Bum cleaners, runaway fathers?

When prophets ‘bless’ tobacco

22/04/2017 00:00:00
by Learnmore Zuze
Emmanuel Makandiwa

IN an apparent show of the confusion, muddle and lack of scriptural grasp characterising modern prophets, a prominent Harare-based prophet, Lazarus Mashavave, of Life Giving Spirit International Ministries-based at Premier Tobacco auction floors and famed for curing people with smoking addictions, last recently lined up tobacco producing farmers to ‘bless’ their crops.

The prophet (Mashavave) is on record saying he had delivered hundreds of people who were addicted to smoking among other problems. He invited men addicted to smoking to his church last year where they practically smoked cigarettes at the Exodus Revival Conference and later testified that they had beaten the urge to smoke.

Local tabloids captured the odd incidents with men smoking at the altar in the supposed house of God. While the men, later followed to their homes, gave testimonies of quitting smoking, it is quite revealing that what we have in the form of the prophets are men without principles. Testimonies have come flying all over about the prophet’s prowess in curing addictions.

Prophet Mashavave is not alone in the blessing of tobacco; Emmanue Makandiwa of UFI ‘pioneered’ the practice in 2014 when he prayed for a tobacco farmer to have a bumper harvest. The incident opened his then emerging church to bitter criticism from different Christian groups. These practices in supposed Christian churches point to lack of understanding of scripture by supposed clergymen. It is quite unfortunate that these clergymen do these things under the banner of Christianity which is an anathema to the Christian faith itself.

Admitted, tobacco remains a top foreign currency earner for the country but coming to the spiritual realm, smoking is not for debate. Christians, unanimously, are against smoking. One thing that emerges on relating to people who frequent the ever-increasing prophet-led churches is that they care little whether these prophets are from God or not but all they need is a solution to their earthly troubles.

One farmer at the auction floors aptly put it this way, “These days you just have to try anything… I don’t know if his powers are from God or not…” This is the truth of what has sadly become of the Pentecostal movement. Principles have become secondary to private gain.

Tobacco has cigarettes as its by-product and, while people might want to claim that tobacco can be used for other things, we all know that making cigarettes is the major end product of tobacco. Operating from tobacco auction floors with the mission of delivering those with addictions, Mashavave’s acts are self-defeating in that the supposed prophet would bless the same crop which contradicts his mission.


The practices keep getting weirder; Harare alone has hundreds of prophets competing for both physical and spiritual space. This has sadly led to practices that are a little more than strange. As I have mentioned several times, these men have deformed Christianity. There simply are no principles in modern prophecy hence we have heard of downright prostitutes being prayed for to enhance their trade appeal.

Why ‘blessing’ tobacco is wrong

It is acknowledged that tobacco, as a plant, is a creation of God but it is actually an abuse of the crop to use it in defiling the human body. We can’t advocate for using everything simply because it was created by God as some might want to argue. 1 Cor 6:19, 20 puts the debate into perspective, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honour God with your body.”

The human body is equated to the temple of the Holy God. God resides in the human body and certainly cannot make home in a tobacco-filled ‘home.’ There is adherence to principle in the heavenly kingdom. Drugs defy the purpose of God. It is actually correct captions that ‘a person is under the influence of a drug’. Drugs take control of one’s faculties; they ultimately become the controlling force which is the very thing that the Bible speaks against in the book of Peter advising people to ‘gird up the loins of your mind’.

Most practices that have become the face of the modern Christian movement actually result in the Christian faith becoming subject of attack from heathens. There is no point preaching at a brothel or bar. Likewise, there is no point setting a church at a tobacco auction floor unless one has other motives. God is not so much desperate for worshippers. God wants those who come to him to do so in earnest. Leaders of the church should direct people in the right path and not to engage in practices that are meant to fill the building at all costs.

Anything that results in addiction is ungodly; if Christ were here today, it is doubtful he would allow people to smoke in the church.

E-mail: lastawa77@gmail.com

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