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A Nation Abandoned By God

August 25, 2010

It is most disheartening reading news reports and commentaries about our beloved nation…nothing ever seems to improve!  For those of us outside of the country and looking forward to returning someday the situation looks bleak, how much more the tens of millions who have to daily endure the trauma and hardship of crass leadership and religious travesty that seem to spell the name Nigeria.

It is most disheartening reading news reports and commentaries about our beloved nation…nothing ever seems to improve!  For those of us outside of the country and looking forward to returning someday the situation looks bleak, how much more the tens of millions who have to daily endure the trauma and hardship of crass leadership and religious travesty that seem to spell the name Nigeria.

 I do not believe there is any other nation worldwide that equals ours in the number of churches and mosques, indeed we are a very religious people, yet with each new day we appear to dance in reverse and sink lower and lower into depravity.  The constant calls for prayer and references to the Name of God amongst the leaders, both political and religious, have led many to conclude that there cannot be a God.  

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I have read over time several articles in Nigerian newspapers speaking detrimentally concerning God, Jesus Christ and religion as a whole.  I cannot blame the writers although I admit they write out of ignorance, because no person who is in a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ would blaspheme or be ignorant of the sovereignty of Almighty God.  However, the knowledge of God eludes the people because the majority of those who purport to bring the message of the Lord to them are not sent by God but are self-appointed.  The greater percentage of places of worship in our dear country are quite simply business centres, where the greatest fraud in the history of man takes place…a fraud that not only robs the people of their financial and physical well-being, but more importantly robs them of their souls as well.

Being a Christian minister, I am not in a position to talk about what goes on in the mosque or Islam as a religion because I firmly take the stand that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, and no one comes to the Father except through the Son—we are saved only by His atoning sacrifice on the cross at Calvary.  A Muslim friend during a recent discussion about the problems plaguing our nation, which are evidently co-spearheaded by religious leaders, commented that he was yet to witness a poor man being honoured with a title in the mosque.  That ironic comment made me chuckle because exactly the same situation persists in the majority of what is called church today.  I am as such not in a position to comment on the teachings of Islam as I am not an authority in that practice, but I am sure that the greed, thievery and deception that is practiced and encouraged by most religious leaders will be frowned at by any deity in any realm.  My annoyance is with the wicked who claim to be part of the church of Christ.

My contention is with purported Christian leaders who delight in taking the position of 'father' and 'mother' over the people, lording it over the people within their grip.  The world is saturated with false teachers and prophets, those who serve God in an 'advisory' capacity rather than servanthood which is what the Lord calls His disciples into.  They crave and adopt ‘celebrity’ status—but God does not do ‘celebrities’, His servants are the most obscure of people save for their voice of reprimand.  These charlatans have taken over the church of Christ, drawing the people to themselves with sorcery, lies and deception in order to rob them of their resources and souls.  They award or have themselves awarded, by equally blind frauds like them, with all sorts of empty titles that have absolutely no meaning before the God of all creation!  Personally I refuse to address any human as 'reverend' because I do not see what should be revered about sinful man.  That title must be reserved for the Lord alone, the Creator, and the creation will do well to humble himself.  "Everything they do is done for men to see: They make their phylacteries wide and the tassels on their garments long; they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; they love to be greeted in the marketplaces and have men call them 'Rabbi.'  "But you are not to be called 'Rabbi,' for you have only one Master and you are all brothers.  And do not call anyone on earth 'father,' for you have one Father, and he is in heaven.  Nor are you to be called 'teacher,' for you have one Teacher, the Christ.  The greatest among you will be your servant.  For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted." (Matthew 23: 5-12)  There is nothing new about false, attention-seeking teachers and prophets; they existed even before God came down incarnate.

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Our nation is cursed, not blessed, with power-hungry, status-mad, recognition-seeking swindlers whose actual names you can barely make out from the string of titles and letters before and after their self-deluded accolades.  They demand respect and honour as they proclaim themselves to be servants of God—yet their names are an absolute stench in the heavens.  As they blurt out their lies and deception, their native tongue according to Jesus Christ, anyone would think they just returned from having breakfast with God.  They promise the people freedom from all kinds of earthly ailments which they claim are Satan-imposed; yet they are themselves chained down by the devil and are actually his instruments for perpetrating evil.  They purport to perform deliverances on their victims, but they need to be delivered from their bondage to greed, lust and sinfulness first.  They make all kinds of bizarre claims as to what the Holy Spirit of God said to them but they are themselves the habitat of demonic spirits, temples of doom in whom the Spirit of the sovereign God would never dwell since He does not dwell in unclean temples.  They are heartless, merciless rogues who have no qualms about making their flock poorer as they get richer.  Everything they do is for personal gain—they have not stood in the counsel of the Lord.  A few of them may have started out well, but money and power have seduced them into Satan's camp.

In a country like ours where the noise from church loudspeakers often make private dialogues near impossible, and with almost every third door a church of sorts, not to talk about the gigantic multi-million naira entertainment arenas that pass as places of worship—one would expect a very holy nation.  On the contrary, the true gospel of our Lord is rarely preached and the messages being screamed and shouted out with much perspiration and drama do nothing but encourage godlessness, wickedness and greed.  Of course they speak the odd bits of truth every now and then, they have to in order to make their deceptive stance convincing, but they swiftly and expertly misinterpret and misrepresent what God is saying to their own advantage.  These satanic masquerades have adopted the message of Satan, the 'prosperity gospel', which is no gospel at all but bad news—all for the purpose of gaining wealth and social status.  Jesus said we are to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all other physical necessities will be added unto us.  The message on most pulpits or shall I say 'stages' today are the other way round—God has chosen you to be healthy, wealthy and prosperous.  They take Jesus to be a liar when they tell their followers they have no business being sick or poor.  Are they suggesting that God hates the poor and physically challenged?  Their hungry and deluded followers lust after them lapping up every bit of deception thrown in their direction in the hope that very soon their ‘breakthrough’ or ‘miracle’ will come as they are being told, and they will be as rich and successful as their accursed ‘father’ or ‘mother’ in the Lord.

Jesus made it clear that to be His disciples we must be willing to give up affection for worldly ambition, status and accumulations.  He also warned that we would face much rejection and persecution because of Him.  Christendom today is filled with bandit leaders who would not deprive themselves of a designer suit for the name of Christ let alone their bank accounts.  They promise the people safety and security from enemies because of the ‘anointing’ they pour over them, but they themselves will not move around freely without the presence of physical bodyguards.  Where is the similarity between them and our Lord?  They compete with the equally accursed political-jobbers in whose hands we are unfortunate to find the reins of our dear nation.  For this reason, rather than speak the sobering Word of God to the leaders or shall I say 'rulers' of our country; they hungrily and desperately seek photo opportunities with them.  They strongly desire to be known by the rogue-leaders in the hope that crumbs of the national cake can fall in their greasy little palms.  Some even shamelessly boast that they are spiritual advisers to the political hierarchy.  It is only in our country that fraudsters and drug-smugglers get special attention of the pastor or 'G.O', which includes special visitations and 'blessings' for the contribution of their accursed wealth into the church.  The source of the money is not of concern as long as the tithes are paid!  What is practiced as tithing is not even as stipulated in the Holy Bible.  

 

As loyal Christians we are expected to financially support the church in order to take care of the needs of the poor and destitute inside and outside of the church.  The fools that our people bow before and worship just about manage to release crumbs of the income for these purposes—and that they do with appropriate publicity so that the people believe they really care.  Most of the money in the church is spent on the pastors and overseers' excessive and flamboyant lifestyles.  Servants of God in the scriptures spoke God's message of rebuke fearlessly to the godless leaders and rulers—many died for their message.  Their messages tore at the heart of some leaders who repented and did what was right in the eyes of God making life more bearable for their citizens, and even where there was no repentance, the consequences of their evil leadership was made known to them in no hidden context.  The deceptive mob we have today will give nothing up for the message of the gospel talkless of their lives—they ‘reject’ sickness and poverty at every mention, let alone death.  These liars continue to prophesy from the very presence of Satan and pour undue accolades on their political counterpart rogues.

They are not blind to the plight of millions of beautiful Nigerians who daily die needlessly because of the seriously sub-standard lifestyle to which they are subjected.  They witness the child abuse and slavery that is going on in the country because the poor children have to feed, they see our young mothers of tomorrow turned into prostitutes and fathers of tomorrow turned into touts and armed robbers.  We have too many orphans who need love and care, the said ministers of God who control several millions in church takings would rather establish lots of profit-making businesses than orphanages and they do not consider it necessary to encourage their comfortable members to give a home and an opportunity to the dear orphans.  God makes it clear in His Word that until we begin to cater for the needs of the orphans, widows and destitute of society He is not impressed with our giving, yet the masquerades on pulpits encourage the generosity of the congregation towards themselves as they eagerly receive extravagant personal gifts from their well off members.  With the monies from their flock they set up educational institutions for the rich and wealthy, the majority of the sponsors who are their congregation cannot even afford to educate their own children there.  Despite the appalling state of our nation, the charlatans who are lacking in the wisdom and counsel of the Lord continue to falsely 'prophesy' success and good news to the leaders who are wasting the lives of the citizenry.  They cannot wait to have the equally foolish political-jobbers acknowledge them and visit their churches as they gleefully rub their filthy hands together and crave invitations to special events—gathering of the accursed.  They grant the 'eminent personalities' seats of honour in their churches even though they are aware that they belong to cults, but then, so do they.  The leaders of the country therefore fool themselves into believing that as long as the 'man' or 'woman' of God is blessing them and they share the plunder with the church, all is well and God blesses them.  The lack of the knowledge of God is a deadly thing!

They get richer with every worship service hence the inordinate number of worship events they hold with various kinds of fraudulent themes.  The regular attendance of their hungry and desperate idolatrous flock has resulted in many poor quality family lives.  Almighty God Himself gave us six days to go about our daily labours and only insisted on a day of worship, the New Testament Christians met on the 'Lord's day', Sunday.  Granted that we may need extra time for in-depth learning of the Word of God in order to help us grow into the kind of children and people God desires, an extra couple of hours a week for collective learning should suffice.  What we have are seven-day long church event sessions lasting several hours, and all that in addition to the daily chaos that characterises life in Nigeria.  The same rogues who have managed to find their way out of the country and are able to rob the flock in stronger currency practice that nonsense even in the western world.  Many marriages are dry and uneventful and children do not get enough attention and time with their parents, and all that is in the name of serving God.  A healthy marriage and family life is one of God's priority jobs for us.  Incessant attendance of worship services, crusades and miracle-promising events will not get us any closer to God if our hearts are not right and obedience is lacking, neither do they make us any holier.

Most Nigerians are incredibly gullible and complacent, they will believe and practice anything as long as it sounds or looks good, blindly following the crowd whilst abandoning any sense of reasoning.  It does not take much to become a ‘man’ or ‘woman’ of God in this age, just declare yourself as one and come up with some ridiculous and bizarre story as to how God pleaded with you to help Him...and you’re on your way.  Employ the services of some first-hand sons of Lucifer, the medicine men, and in no time you’ll get a crowd.  Then bamboozle the unsuspecting punters with a few psychological brainwashing sessions in the name of ‘revival’ or ‘crusade’.  Get some actors to claim you’ve healed them whilst convincing the truly sick in your audience that they were not healed for lack of faith.  As for the money-hungry ones, most likely everyone in the crowd, tell them God has given you the mandate to make millionaires only He won’t do it until He sees their financial investment first...and then make them wait each time they turn up as you inform them of God’s steady progress over the matter.  In the meantime, they need to keep investing.  And another thing, a fake American accent where you can pull it off adds extra edge to the whole act!  Yet God's requirements for us are quite plainly laid out in the Holy Bible and any person who is drowned in the wave of deception that has overtaken the world only have themselves to blame.

What most Christians practice is pure idolatry because it is their pastor or 'G.O' that they know and acknowledge while using the Name of Jesus Christ as a mere talisman; each time they say ‘in the Name of Jesus’ they may as well be saying ‘abracadabra’.  They fall all over themselves before their ministers and the more popular the minister the more they love to drop their name at every opportunity.  Even the names of churches are adored more than the Name of Christ, the Name above all names.  We are warned severally in the Holy Bible about the need to be very vigilant towards false prophets and teachers and their heresies, yet my people would rather believe the Word of their ministers over and above the Word of God that rebukes and corrects.  For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine.  Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.  They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4: 3-4)

The excesses of these charismatic false ministers stink to the highest heavens.  I read with disgust and embarrassment various articles disapproving the purchase of Pastor Adeboye's private jet—and I totally agree with them.  I guess if it’s good enough for thieving bank executives and politicians, it’s good enough for thieving pastors!  I read with even more disgust responses by the misguided and greedy sycophants who offered vain defence asking people not to speak against a man of God, and that being a very busy overseer he often needs to get across the world urgently.  What utter balderdash!  In the first place any servant of God who wants to be respected as such must emulate and personify the person of Christ Jesus our Lord.  None of us servants are expected to develop our own 'style' of leadership beyond that demonstrated by our Lord Himself.  Secondly, God has messengers all over the world and I don't see the urgency for any one servant to jet about the world at exorbitant cost in order to deliver the message of the Gospel, the message is already worldwide and anyway, his defenders did not say he was charting new territory but that he had to visit his established churches all over the world.  The apostles who laid the foundation of the church at a time when the message of the gospel was new to the world and certainly needed urgent heralding, did not because of that spend the sacrificially given funds of the church on horses or chariots.  They went about by the simplest and modest means of travel and laboured with their own hands.  They certainly mixed with the masses as Jesus Christ did in order to deliver the good news of salvation to the oppressed of society.  Running around in a private jet and a fleet of latest luxury cars that characterises the impostors who claim to serve God today definitely alienates them from the poor and destitute—they have no time for the poor who can't tithe and sow 'seeds of faith'.  Their events in the western societies are usually held in very trendy and expensive venues, even their birthday parties and pastors' breakfasts—Lord help us!

So where does our dear nation come into all this?  Nigeria has bred and is still breeding a collection of fools who have no qualms about taking the Name of the Lord in vain and performing atrocities in His holy Name.  Powers of sorcery and demonic activities by which they dazzle the people are accredited to the holy Name of our Lord and the Holy Spirit.  Because of the encouragement they receive from said spiritual leaders, the political leaders also constantly tell their lies and swear falsely by the Name of God.  They love to add credence to their empty and deceptive speeches by invoking the Name of God.  They take their oath of office in the Name of God knowing that they have no intention to serve but to rob.  Both spiritual and political leaders worship wealth, power and status but having lost all sensitivity to the truth, claim they worship God.  Sadly, their followers are led in the same vein—so we are predominantly a nation of idolaters!  That is why all the endless church attendance, fasting, and prayers go unnoticed by God—He is not impressed!  Whatever drops of mercy we receive from God is simply because He is a benevolent and gracious God and not because of our righteousness.

Our country had no president in the country for over 80 days and our ‘spiritual leaders’ were quiet.  They had to be quiet because they could not afford to be seen as treacherous in light of the favours they either have received or hope to receive from the country’s corrupt and God-forsaken leadership.  Exactly the same perverted frame of mind as the ruling ‘elite’ who refused to do what is right in the interests of the nation because of personal selfish ambition—until they were boxed into a corner.  The Word of God is written about them all, spiritual and political wolves in sheep clothing, they will all pay for their madness.  It is curious that despite the powers of healing the numerous pastors in the country boast of having and for which they exploit the gullible masses, none of them could make the ailing President Yar'Adua walk out of the Saudi hospital at the time.

Each individual is saved who turns to Christ Jesus for forgiveness and salvation, but as for the 'class action' of salvation of the nation we keep being instructed to pray for, we will wait forever.  If we continue to deceive ourselves by believing the false prophecies that are regularly blurted out (especially in New Year messages) by people whose characters are in sharp contrast to our Lord's, simply because they adorn themselves with stupid titles and pull great crowds, then ignorance will be no excuse on the day of God's judgement.  Enter through the narrow gate.  For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7: 13-4).  Whether we believe it or not, God is sovereign over all of creation in heaven and on earth, and He will judge.  The blood of the innocent children and the citizens who die needlessly daily because of the abuse of power, exploitation and wilful negligence of the spiritual and political leaders, flow like rivers through the land of Nigeria.  God holds accountable every spiritual and political liar (I can no longer bring myself to call them leaders) for all the lost lives in this nation.  They will all suffer to the third and fourth generation of their descendants; it is the promise of God.  Let them enjoy their ill-gotten wealth and quasi prosperity today for tomorrow holds in store for them weeping and gnashing of teeth.  Let them enjoy the applause and honour of the people they mislead today, for tomorrow holds in store for them disgrace, disdain and terror before the Lord.  Let their names be on every mortal lip today, for tomorrow their names will be spat out of the mouth of the Lord.

Surely even now all the charlatans of Christendom are hovering around Aso Rock and Governor's offices in a bid for their share in the N9 billion 50th anniversary celebration of failure that the government is planning against the wishes of the Nigerian people.  They will purport to organise all kinds of prayer events and look forward to receiving invites to all the accursed jamborees to take place.  I am also sure they are all equally queuing up to ‘bless’ the three new presidential jets the knuckleheads in the FEC just purchased, in spite of the abject poverty and sufferings of the citizens, for the insane enhancement of their travels (hopefully they will be their newly acquired collective coffins!).  May the Lord hold it against them all, amen!

Sarah Ajala-Immanuel is a pastor-teacher who resides in the UK