Presiding Bishop of Living Faith Church a.k.a. Winners Chapel, Bishop David Oyedepo has said it is possible for believers to lose their salvation.
He made the assertion in an interview on Dove Television conducted by the General Manager of station, Mr. Dele Oke in a programme tagged The Fathers. The interview was aired on Monday November 12.
Oyedepo who used the opportunity of the interview to debunk the notion that he designed the Faith Tabernacle said it is spiritual ignorance for pastors to preach that what enters a man does not defile the man noting that drinking alcohol and smoking do not speak well of a professing Christian and was never what Jesus was trying to pass across when he made that famous statement that what enters a man does not defile a man.
He was reacting to the interviewer’s reference to a preacher who said smoking and drinking will not send a Christian to hell but rather would only hasten the person’s journey to heaven.
Oyedepo said, ‘even the world is against smokers and those who take alcohol. Why should Christians now embrace it? The fact that people were clapping and yelling when the pastor said so does not make the preacher right. There are pastors who divorce their wives today and marry another woman the following day and yet people clap in approval. It is possible to lose your salvation. The Bible enjoins us to guard our salvation jealously. Judas was part of the Apostles yet he fell off from Grace.’
On the design of Faith Tabernacle purportedly adjudged to be the largest auditorium in the world, he said, ‘ it is true I approved the design of the structure. But I did not design it. Over 300 architects were involved in the design. And they all had over 10 years experience. So I did not design the edifice because I must face my assignment which is preaching the gospel’
He said further that the greatest assignment anybody can carry out in life is to obey the call of God. ‘There is no greater assignment than preaching the Gospel. I still preach, I mean I still go out for evangelism. The last time I went out close to 100 people came to know Christ. I had just come back from Dubai a day before and by Saturday morning I went out. About 87 of them came to church the following Sunday. That is the joy of a believer.’
Commenting on the greatest challenge he has ever faced, he said, ‘I normally have problem answering the question because I do not see challenges. I see stepping stones. There are issues that come my way but I do not regard them as problem because I am concerned about my assignment.
‘When my wife had the health challenge, I was still preaching as if nothing was happening to me. This was not because I was not concerned but because I know she would come out of the situation. During the time of her sickness I visited over 26 countries preaching the gospel. Today she is back on her feet. Christians will always face challenges but challenges are not meant to drown a Christian.”
On politics he said every believer has a civic responsibility to vote and be voted for. He however said believers are not permitted to go into politics if they have not been called to do so. “the reason why many Christians fail in politics is largely because they have not been called. Or perhaps they misinterpreted the vision God showed them. The problem is not with God it is with the receiver of the vision.”
On whether Christians should turn the left cheek if their right cheek is smitten, the charismatic Bishop and chancellor of Covenant University said every action against the Christian should be treated on its merit. “The same Bible that says we should turn the left cheek also says we should resist the devil. So a believer has a right to resist evil depending on what God inspires him to do”