Nigeria is a beautiful country of about 200 million people. Obviously, we can never have the same opinion on all issues, but some of our people, especially the so-called elite are self-righteous. Coronavirus is a peculiar virus that is dealing death blow to countries around the world, even the God’s own country, the United States of America that has “In God We Trust” on her currency, the dollar, is not spared.
This COVID-19 has brought out the worse in some Nigerians. They lie, obfuscate, disobey lawful order and peddle rumours all over the place. These people, among them visible or known and popular church leaders, do disservice to this nation when they, in the name of God, ask their flock to disobey lawfully constituted authority and orders given by it.
A few example will suffice. Bishop David Oyedepo, in contravention of a state order, brought his followers to the so-called Canaan Land (land flowing with milk and honey) in Ota, Ogun State, to worship on March 22, 2020. Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye ordered all RCCG parishes to hold services in their churches or house fellowship centres for that Sunday. Why do that?
The reason is simple. Both of these mega churches don’t want to let go the tithe and offerings of their flocks. Money was the common denominator that day, even though they could have asked their followers to worship in those centres and keep their money for use when it will be most needed such as these next two weeks.
One Pastor in Abuja got arrested for holding a church service that Sunday. How are Oyedepo and Adeboye different from him? Why was he arrested and Oyedepo who held and beamed his own service let off the hook? According to his media person, he is engaging the governments of Lagos and Ogun States.
The churches are simply teaching the public to disobey the law because of the money they will collect on Sunday. Unlike lowly people like us, these Pastors have read the Bible, they’ve digested and imbibed it into their consciousness or sub-consciousness as the case may be. They should, therefore, know that the Bible teaches all of us to obey our leaders. It also tells us to give unto Caesar what belongs to him. Most Nigerian Pastors use the church apparatus to enrich themselves and their families, and then preach salvation only to the rest of us.
I listened to Pastor Adeboye’s sermon on March 22, part of it was that God told him about the impending virus/calamity that will plague the world in 2020. For the life of the rest of us who didn’t hear it, why didn’t he share such revelation with the Nigerian government? We have a very senior Pastor of RCCG as Vice President, and I’m guessing that because Adeboye is revered by the VP, and almost half the population of this country, he would be taken seriously.
For me, it is negligent for anybody to keep the revelation to himself and to say as he said during the sermon that Redeemers who fasted are safe and would not be afflicted. What about those Redeemers who couldn’t do the fasting either for medical reasons or old age? Are we now to believe that they will be afflicted because they didn’t fast?
Nigeria deserves better from our eminent Pastors, Reverends, Imams, Bishops, Rabbis (if there are any in Nigeria) and Human Rights Executives. If God speaks to anyone of these set of people about any pestilence or plague that will afflict our nation or any nation for that matter, they owe it as a sacred duty to let us know. My understanding of the Bible is that God warned every nation he was going to afflict. They all got afflicted because they did not heed the warnings or turned away from their sins.
A lot of our human rights executives are jobbers. All they want is cheap popularity/publicity or money from the government of the day. Their story is not different from our religious leaders. Give them a few millions and they will keep quiet, a few that will be left talking and shouting will be the ones that are yet to have a thoroughfare of Naira into their pockets. Gone are the days of fearless crusaders like Gani Fawehinmi, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, Beko Ransome-Kuti, Aminu Kano etc.
This is not to say that all religious leaders and human rights executives are bad, but some are giving the rest a bad name. Pastor William Kumunyi is a quintessential example of a man of God in Nigeria. The man is well regarded and respected by Nigerians for his leadership by example. He has not converted his church to a family business like some have done. You will not find his children or cronies where the church money is. Why others can’t emulate this man beats me.
In the word of a great legislator in US House of Representatives, Congressman Elijah Cummings of Maryland that recently passed ‘We are better than this’. Yes, we really are truly better than this.
LET US PRAY FOR NIGERIA ceaselessly. Although some people believe that religion and prayers have made us a set of lazy and indolent people, I still believe that a little bit more prayers than the ones already offered can help us.
LONG LIVE NIGERIA.