A CRITICAL STUDY OF IMMORAL LIVING AND ITS EFFECT ON THE YOUTH OF THE APOSTOLIC CHURCH NIGERIA, ALAKIA DISTRICT
This study was on a critical study of immoral living and its effect on the youth of the Apostolic church, Nigeria. The total population for the study is 200 members of selected Apostolic churches in Alakias district The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made pastors, elders, deacons and members were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies
1.1Background of the study
Morality today, it has been observed, is increasingly on the decay. Ethics as a way of ordered living which propagates ideal communal life and human relationship is speedily waning. There is concern in several quarters that at the rate immorality is making waves in the society; the likely tendency is that there might be serious breakdown of law and order which might lead to anarchy. It is said that a lawless and immoral society is prone to chaotic situation and anarchy. An ideal society is that which is devoid of violence, civil disorder, with minimal rate of crime and immoral practices and unethical standards. This is why sound morals and ethical standard have been the concern of mans’ social institutions in recent years. Hence, many campaigns in the society today are geared towards curbing immorality and other such voices and drama is a major instrument used by various anti- immorality’ and anti-corruption campaign agencies. In Nigeria, the church has been taking one of the leading roles in the campaign against immorality.
Youth is the time of life when one is young, and often means the time between childhood and adulthood (maturity). It is also defined as “the appearance, freshness, vigor, spirit. The above definition showcases the characteristic of one who is young”. Biblically, God often used young people to do great things. For example in the cases of David, Joshua, Joseph, Daniel and many other youths as recorded in the Old Testaments. In the New Testaments, God used a youth name “Timothy” to pastor and lead the Ephesian church when he was a teenager. According to (1Timothy 4:12 says), “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” In addition, there is much to be learned from the faith of a child. Matthew 18:2-4 says, “He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: ‘Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.’” Because of God’s heart for young people, it is important to recognize youth’s value in today’s church
The issue of moral decadent in our society is a thing that is needed to be looked into. Many things have gone wrong, since no one sees the reason to be upright in action at all times, in all places and in all circumstances. The continuing degeneration of personal virtue among the world’s societies seems to be emerging as the single-most urgent issue of our time. Until recent years, churches had since deferred from their original roles in morality, though many outside the church continued political pressure to move churches either towards or away from a value oriented. This posse’s questions and ideas about the appropriate approach to learning of morality in the society today. (Oviawe, 2012).
Oviawe, (2012) opined that moral and morale are polite, decent and appropriate way of portraying ourselves in our duties, home and society. It is a socially acceptable manner of life. It can also be referred to as the principle of right and wrong or decorum. Our parents and ancestors practices moral and morale to the core and had high regards of them. They also handed them to us with diligence. At that time, they paid particular attention to the manner of sitting, walking, talking, greeting, eating, principle of right and wrong, discipline and commitment in everything they did and the way they did it. They were conscientious about their duties, keeping to the rules and regulations related to them. They saw this as maintaining their own dignity and respect for themselves and others. They made sure that everybody was well brought up.
The issue of youth morality is a concern in the Apostolic churches in Alakia District While this may be a concern, no major research has been done in Nigeria to ascertain the reasons why the youth may be involved in immoral issues. Neither has there been a study on how those fallen in immorality may be healed and restored to church membership.
Statement of the problem
A good number of the youth in the Apostolic Church in Alakia are openly involved in immoral practices. They attend church regularly, but have amorous affairs fairly openly. They do not seem to understand that this weakens their moral and spiritual fiber. Some youth feel it is not easy to remain morally pure until they marry. Some consider the process of getting married an expensive venture. The impact of peer pressure in schools and social places cause some of them to lose their moral purity. The pressure that youth feel when they leave home to go to boarding schools is so immense that it makes some lose grip on their moral purity. The change of localities from pre urban to urban areas brings on pressure among the youth for them to remain faithful to moral standards. Those in higher institutions of learning find it difficult to not become involved in sexual activities with the opposite sex. Cohabiting is alien to the traditional Nigerian culture and an immoral behavior in Christianity, yet in the youth culture of the twenty-first century it is happening
Objective of the study
The objectives of the study are;
- To ascertain the effect of immoral living on the youth of apostolic church
- To ascertain the relationship between immoral living and the relationship with God
- To ascertain the way to encourage moral purity among the youth of the Apostolic church in Alakia District
The following have been put forward for testing
H0: there is no effect of immoral living on the youth of apostolic church.
H1: there is effect of immoral living on the youth of apostolic church.
H0: there is no relationship between immoral living and the relationship with God
H2: there is relationship between immoral living and the relationship with God
Significance of the study
The study will be very significant to students and churches especially Apostolic church. The Apostolic Church teaches that moral purity is cardinal in Christian behavior. Some of the youth in the church do not seem to appreciate this fact. The study will give a clear insight of immoral living and its effect on the youth of the Apostolic church Nigeria. It will also serve as a reference to other researcher that will embark on the related topic
Scope and limitation of the study
The scope of the study covers a critical study of immoral living and its effect on the youth of the Apostolic church Nigeria.
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).
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.
- a) AVAILABILITY OF RESEARCH MATERIAL: The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study
1.9 Definition of terms
Morality: This is human attempt to define what is right and wrong about our actions and thoughts, and what is good and bad about our being and who we are.
Immorality: The quality of not being in accord with standards of right of good conduct.
Church: The word church is the group of believers. The word “church” is used to refer to the building where people congregate with other Christians. Also, it is referred to a particular grouping of churches or denomination. Biblically, “church” means either universal church or local church. The universal church refers to all member s of the body of Christ in all places and all ages.