Are Minister Mahendere's lyrics biblical?

It was late at night, at a time I know I should be asleep. It’s as easy as going offline, closing my eyes and going to sleep. But of course, I don’t do that. Instead, in a conversation with my friend, (who was honestly sleepy to the point of just indulging me by replying so ‘conversation’ might be some sort of a stretch), I got to wonder, are Minister Mahendere’s lyrics to ‘Tangai Neni’ biblical?


Before I go on, I should state a few things.

  1. If you are a Minister Mahendere fan, please (and pretty please) do not take this as an attack. You will see that in this article, I won’t even claim whether it’s wrong (maybe once I get more information, I will have a solid opinion). I am simply in a quest for truth.
  2. I am not the biggest fan of his in any case. It’s not that I don’t like his music and him, I just don’t listen to his music. I have nothing against him. (I felt I had to say this to remove any bias that might be perceived in this article).

Things I have questions about

I am going to try to pose questions that I have about the song. I will try to be as objective as possible and keep them as questions. Please do feel free to reply with answers and I will update this article accordingly.

Now that that is out of the way…

Tangai neni

What does that mean? It’s implication is that we are in a competition to be blessed so “might as well start here Lord”.

In addition to that, an obvious question is “Is this a song about God or about me?”

The whole song’s lyrics are “Tangai neni”, “Mugopedza neni”, “Ndioneiwo”… Matthew 6 vs 33 says “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

Are we not in direct violation of that when we ask God to do something for us first? And I say for us first because God is considered at the end, sort of as an afterthought with the following lyrics, at the end of the song…

I will testify
I will testify
Of Your goodness
Of Your mercy

Prosperity gospel repackaged?

There is a part of the song that goes like

Ko paye
Pamuno promoter vanhu venyu
Imbo tangai neni Ishe


Pamunokomborera vana venyu
Imbo tangai neni Ishe

There is a very materialistic feel to the song. Prosperity gospel-like. And who can blame him? It sells easily. No wonder the song has 2.7 million views on YouTube. But then again, is it biblical?

So for those who things don’t work out…

There are lyrics saying

Iko kutenda ndinako
Kushoko renyu
Saka ndioneiwo Mwari

This is one of the reasons why people end up leaving the church. “Ah it didn’t work out? You didn’t have enough faith. Keep pushing” without stopping to ask, “Is this what God wants for me? What actually is God’s will?”

Romans 9 vs 21 says “Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?” God is sovereign and His will will be done.

Is it not better that we first ask God what His will is and then pray for it to be done instead of encouraging people to have faith in whatever, no matter the reason?”

In conclusion

If it wasn’t clear, my biggest problem with the song is that it seems to be about me and not about God. It seems to be about what I want and not what God wants. Further to that, it seems to be encouraging an ATM type of God. “Lord I want to make the first withdrawal so tangai neni”.

Is that really what the New Testament is encouraging our relationship with God to be like?

Again, please do feel free to reply me on my WhatsApp by clicking right here

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