This is one of the most deleterious habits in every relationship on earth, I’m referring to ‘entitlement culture’, and I’ve seen the dangerous trend in most churches today and amongst believers generally. The pressure on pastors to grow their congregation has also encouraged this carnal culture in religious assemblies.
A particular biblical story caught my attention a few days ago and I would love to stimulate your hearts with while considering the subject of Entitlement Culture. In Luke 7, the elders of the Jewish faith accosted Jesus on behalf of a Roman centurion for the healing of the centurion’s servant, they however built their premise for the healing on the Centurion’s worthiness or better still his ‘entitlement’ considering the financial donations towards the advancement of Jewish cause.
‘And when they came to Jesus, they begged Him earnestly, saying that the one for whom He should do this was deserving’, but amazingly the Centurion himself felt otherwise about his worthiness of the miracle, ‘…Lord do not trouble Yourself, for I am not worthy that You should Exeter under my roof, therefore I did not even think myself worthy to come to You..’ (Luke 7 v 4-7).
The irony of the matter is that some of the people who are new in faith usually have a very sincere heart towards the things of God and would not mind giving their all towards the Cause of the gospel, but elders are the ones who tout the Entitlement Culture in most places, they justify longevity as basis for Entitlement hence become very agitated when they don’t get what they consider ‘deserving’ because of their longer time in the Lord.
Let us take a closer look at how to identify someone with Entitlement Culture around you because you have to distance yourself from such people or else danger looms for you. They can never be satisfied with your commitment to their welfare and usually show ingratitude in their external behaviours.
How to Identify People with Entitlement Culture
- They Are Ingrates: whatever you do for those who have the Entitlement Culture is considered ‘expected’ hence usually aren’t thankful to their benefactors. There were 10 lepers that were cleansed in Luke 13 and only one of them came back to Thank Jesus for the healing, the Lord wasn’t happy about that development and mentioned that the only one who came was a Samaritan because others were Jews (they felt entitled to the healing). Most people that are ingrates demonstrate that satanic attitude because of their expectation of the blessing hence had Entitlement Culture.
- They Brag About What They Did: another major sign of someone who has Entitlement Culture is that giving factor. The elders told Jesus in the story of Luke 7 that the Centurion ‘deserved’ the miracle because he had ‘built synagogues’ and ‘loves the nation’. Whilst the latter could pass for a good reason, the first is very carnal in nature. People that mention money or giving of their time could be displaying that dangerous culture.
- They Over Emphasize Family Ties: my siblings and I have always had running battles when it comes to this point. The feeling is that they are ‘Entitled’ to some things from me simply because they are my family members, but Christ didn’t espouse that ideology and many Christians are guilty of the same. Jesus said ‘but He answered and said to the one who told Him, “who is My mother and who are My brother?” and He stretched out His hand towards His disciple and said, “here are My mother and My brothers”‘. Jesus redefined family ties to same values and spiritual ties. Though many of us still don’t practice that especially in Africa where blood they say is sticker than water.
- They Believe They Are Doing You A Favour: being your friend is adjudged as doing you a favour. These are people that measure things wrongly and don’t treasure relationships as much. They have an over-valued estimation of their importance in the lives of others, therefore believe they are helping people by associating with them. It is a very dangerous opinion and valuation in life.
- They Value Money More Than Morals: finally people with ‘Entitlement Culture’ value money more than morals, especially from the story above. The elders thought the Centurion deserves the Blessings because he had money and had been quite supportive of the Jewish Cause. Many people in today’s church leadership also value Money more than Morals hence they give uncommon attention to money bags in their churches, reflecting the ‘Entitlement Culture’, I hope we all don’t have the same culture.
Kindly ask God to help us all as we walk with Him so that we don’t have this harmful culture in our walk with God, more often than none it will be there when you have the same with men. Be inspired and God bless.