Moses Oludele Idowu
PROPHECY, CONTROL AND RELIGIOUS HEGEMONY: THE REDEEMED CHRISTIAN CHURCH AND THE REST OF US
“The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) Pastor Enoch Adeboye has prophesied that it would come to a time in the country that the church will be at the centre of every critical decision adding that nobody will amount to anything without the input of the RCCG.
” Adeboye recalled that his earlier prophecy that no major decision will be taken in the country without the input of the RCCG had already come to pass adding that it would come to a time in the country THAT NOBODY WILL AMOUNT TO ANYTHING IN NIGERIA WITHOUT THE INPUT OF THE RCCG.” ( Declarations at RCCG Convention in August, 2019, Church Times of August, 2019 p.5. My emphasis]
There you have it in black and white. Virtually every newspaper carried the story and to the best of my knowledge it has not been refuted.
That is why you must worry. That is why you should be genuinely afraid. If indeed it is true that Pastor Adeboye said that then we are in trouble, including RCCG.
Soon, you will know why.
A WORD ABOUT E. A. ADEBOYE
Before the Touch- not- my- anointed crowd of overzealous come for my head again, let me quickly clarify certain things.
I love Pastor Adeboye. He is a man of destiny, a man whose life and work have affected our nation either for good or ill. Few persons in history have achieved that in any age.
He is a humble man, self- effacing and simple. I once heard him say that the reason he left University of Lagos for University of Ilorin, my alma mater, was to avoid being a senior to his former teachers in the same department since he had been rapidly promoted even above them as a result of producing several scholarly papers within a short time. That was E.A. Adeboye. Humble. Simple…
I covet his humility. I desire his simplicity.
I did not meet him at Ilorin but some of the students he taught told me about his mastership of the subject and his capacity to break complex mathematical models and simplify them to students. Now which student would not like such a teacher?
He is obviously a good man. And a man of God too. Of this I have no doubt. It was in his office in 1987 at Ebutte meta I first saw the tangible Presence of God, where I had gone to invite him for a program. Such a good man.
Now that is why I am worried.
Goodness, closeness with God invest your life with moral authority and a capacity to do good or evil on a large scale to the greatest number. Some of the worst evils in history have been done by well – meaning persons not intentionally but based on the Theory of Unintended Consequences.
Luther was a good man, by any standard. But his diatribe against the Jews became the ready instrument that the Nazis and their ideologues used to coopt the German Protestant Community in their sinister agenda of Holocaust and the murder of millions.
Schofield, Charles Pharam and even George Whitefield did immortal good but their racist mindset and beliefs which were documented now count against them in the Tribunal of Posterity.
Of recent, in the last few years I began to get alarmed at certain things coming from RCCG and also from Pastor Adeboye. Especially from the period when this church embarked on its Mega projects and a Church at every 50 metres ( or is it 10 metres), a member from every family, firstborn prayers etc. That raises some theological issues which I cannot reconcile. Just about that period they lost me.
I love Pastor Adeboye. I admire his simplicity and humility and devotion. But some of his utterances and actions in recent time disturb me like this dangerous self- fulfilling prophecy. Dr. P.C. Nelson once warned Kenneth Hagin and other young ministers in the 1940’s about Alexander Dowie: “You can follow his faith, but don’t follow his methods.” Then he added this statement: “A person could be right at heart but wrong in the head”. Somehow, I think Pastor Adeboye should not have uttered this ” prophecy” out even if that is what he believed. Because by so doing now he has created division not unity, he has put RCCG vs. the Rest. If no one can be anybody in Nigeria without RCCG input then there are already two classes of churches, peoples, etc. That is division, segmentation, othering not unity. It is not the Spirit of God that divides God’s people and God’s peoples are not identified by denominations, any denomination but by the Seal of the Holy Spirit and the Blood of Christ.
With this brief introduction I now go into the substance of this unscriptural, illogical prophecy. Since the Bible asks us to judge prophecy then I am at liberty to scrutinize this very one because it concerns Nigeria and Nigerians, the Church and other believers especially those of us who are not of RCCG persuasion. If we can not be somebody in Nigeria in future except with RCCG blessings then we are probably second class Christians; our own Jesus is probably not as strong as the RCCG’s own, or our own God or Bible is not as potent as theirs. These
are the implications, unfortunately we have not been taught to think logically.
That very thought is not acceptable to me. It is unscriptural. God has no favourite in His Household and His Household consist of every true believer in every church denomination and outside of denomination.
PROPHECY AS INSTRUMENT OF MANIPULATION
Be careful of anyone giving you prophecy. Prophecy can make or mar. As an instrument of manipulation it has no equal. Shakespeare understood the power of prophecy as a manipulative instrument. In his work on Macbeth it was the prophecy by the witches to him that eventually forced his hands against his king, sovereign.
Observe also that even Sophocles believed in this power. In his masterpiece on tragedy, King Oedipus, notice it was the oracular prophecy to Oedipus and the attempt to avert that prophecy that brought his tragedy upon him of having to kill his biological father and marrying his own mother. That is what makes prophecy dangerous.
Elisha prophesied Hazael would be king of Syria even when his king, Ben- Hadad was still living. Hazael did the logical thing by killing his sick master and reigning in his stead. Elisha’s prophecy emboldened him to commit murder or regicide.
Nietzsche’s prophecy of the Superman and Will to Power and even the Antichrist propelled the Nazis and inspired Germany on its diabolical mission that would cost the world millions of lives.
Karl Marx’s prophecy of a Class war between the rich and the poor working class and of endless struggles and revolutions and the emergence of the “dictatorship of the proletariat ” did not only end in a book, it produced its bitter consequences in revolutions, struggles and insurgency.
Thoreau’s prophecy of Civil Disobedience laid the foundation for the Mahtma Gandhi’s non- violent revolution that set India free from British imperialism.
That is why you should not ignore any prophecy or idea however asinine. The British society ignored Marx, they paid no heed to his writings. The German society despised his poetry. At his funeral only 11 people were present. But 150 years later his ideas and prophecy of class war were ruling 1/3 of the world. Don’t ignore prophecy, challenge it. Don’t despise prophecy confront it. Could this be the reason why Paul asks us not to despise prophesying?
PROPHECY AND A NATION
Let us now examine this prophecy again.
“… It would come to a time in the country that nobody will amount to anything in Nigeria without the input of the RCCG.”
Since the Bible asks us to judge prophecy we are at liberty in examining and scrutinising this prophecy. This is not only required it is a duty. If this prophecy were only about RCCG and her members I would not comment since I am not of that persuasion. However since it involves Nigeria and Nigerians and has condemned our future to significance to RCCG’s favour and wishes then I must answer.
I want to examine this prophecy on 4 principal grounds and from different perspectives viz:
* the Scriptures
* Christ and His Finished Works
* Fairness and God’s Prerogatives
The very first thing about this “prophecy” or declaration is that it is unscriptural. It denies every tenet of scriptures and every logic if interpretation that I know.
” Tell the righteous it shall be well with him”
“Righteousness exalts a nation but sin is the reproach to any people”.
Here is one of the several keys for progress in the Bible. Notice it is about righteousness. It is righteousness that exalts. If a member adheres to righteous principles and eschew honesty he is bound to reach the top, someday. That is why nations that do not pray as Nigeria are making it because they are doing the right things and doing things right.
When Joseph followed righteousness in a strange land he made it to the top, though he suffered.
When Daniel made righteousness and justice his life’s values he reached the top in a strange land.
The God Who made righteousness, truth and justice the habitation of His Throne cannot condemn an entire nation and the success and progress of her people to the whims and caprices of a single denomination. If none would be anything without RCCG then the Word of God is invalidated, and if the Scriptures is not true then Christianity is fake.
Two is the Glory of Christ. Every prophecy must exalt and promote Jesus. “No one can claim he is speaking by the Holy Spirit and calls Jesus accursed.” ” The testimony of Jesus Christ is the spirit of prophecy”, says the Book of Revelation. Thus every prophecy must lift up Jesus not any man or any denomination.
Now, does this prophecy lift
up Jesus, His Vicarious Sufferings and His Finished Works? The answer is no, capital No.
If no one will be anything in Nigeria without the input of RCCG then where is the Christ of God, His Atonement, Substitutionary Work ? Where is the Cross and the Gospel of the Cross? Where is the Finished Works of Christ which redeemed us from the curse of the Law and assured our distinction, significance and progress?
In one stroke this “prophecy” this prophecy nullifies everything and make the a denomination the determinant of progress rather than Christ.
That is what makes this prophecy wrong.
Whatever usurps the Place of our Christ in the life of His people or supplants it is not of God. If Jesus Himself cannot make anyone rich or somebody in Nigeria except with the grace of RCCG even if such a fellow is in good standing, then He is no longer Christ. To you see the implications. Christ has not abdicated His Throne to any church denomination, least of all RCCG.
The third factor here is the Logic. Does it stand to Logic that in a nation of 180 million people no one can be somebody except through the input of a denomination? Does the God ( or god) worshiped by this denomination superior or different from the God in other denominations? Is their own Bible special from the others? Of course the answer is No. This is the illogic. Except the RCCG is setting up herself as a super church different from all others and its God different from the God of Historic Christianity. But if it is different then it is false. Pastor Adeboye is not the first person God spoke to and RCCG is not the last person to hear the Voice of God. There are churches that have operated in Kingdom power long before RCCG even came to birth.
Fourthly is the fairness and goodness of it all. We know one thing about God: He is a Good God and He is also Fair and just. We also know that in all situations He would always act like Himself because He cannot deny Himself. He cannot act in denial to what and who He is. Thus He would not be part of injustice, unfairness and evil. I am talking of the God of the Bible the Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ because there are now many gods in Nigeria and in Nigerian churches.
Now look at it this way. If a man is just and righteous and even hardworking he cannot be somebody or anything if he fails to secure the input of RCCG; but an RCCG member at least is sure to make it because he already has the right input because he belonged to the favoured church. We are been told in essence that honesty, hard work or righteousness are not the yardsticks of progress but the input of a church denomination – known for all its defects, blemishes, flaws, questionable practices etc. Now the God that would sanction such a thing would be less than just and fair. It is a god who takes sides in human affairs. It is a god who does not care about merit or meritocracy. I shall not serve such a god.
The god that would tie the progress of a whole people and entire races to a denomination – a denomination that is not particularly distinguished by any exceptional conduct, holy living, righteousness or in anyway superior to the others – will not have my loyalty or consent. That is not my own God.
When John Wesley lay dying the elders of Methodism surrounded his bed and asked him to give them a word before passage. And Wesley opened his eyes and declared: “Tell all Methodists God is with us”. That was 1791 and it was really true then that God indeed was with the Methodists, if He ever was with any denomination.
Is God with the Methodists today? May be, may be not. But Wesley’s prophecy was at least true in his days and even in the generations following.
In 1920’s Moses Orimolade prophesied that the C&S would outlive and outlast all other churches. Had that happened? Perhaps still in the future but not yet.
In the 1950’s Joseph Babalola said that the CAC is the last vehicle of salvation in the Park of God and that no church will again emerge that will again outshine CAC. I also leave you to judge whether this has happened.
This present prophecy by Enoch Adeboye will also go the same way of unfulfilled prophecy. And more deservedly so than those above.
And in a sense Babalola was right because in the day when he gave that prophecy CAC was indeed the last vehicle of salvation and if the generations following had continued with the same spirit of their fathers the Lord too would have kept His word.
These prophecies however forgot one crucial thing about God: God never ties any man or woman or denomination to His purpose. To do that would bring Him to a state of dependency
and dependency is incompatible with sovereignty and omnipotency. That is why I don’t mind telling you that this new addition, this prophecy of ” join RCCG or fail”- for that is what it boils to,- will itself fail.
GOING THE WAY OF ROME
The greatest danger of this prophecy is that it creates wedges among the body of believers. Segmentation and Othering are its logical consequences. Much evil will result from this self- fulfilling prophecy. Since no one is expected to be anything or somebody without the input of RCCG then every effort too must be made to keep “others” from progress and advancement where it is in the power of Redeemed members to do so. This prophecy has given them the template. Thus if an RCCG member heads a place every available slots must be filled with RCCG members since it is the church destined to have achievers and others are merely parasites existing on her grace. The other day the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo was accused of filling all the slots in his office with his church members only. Now, with this prophecy we shall see more of that, assuming it is true.
There is the other side of the coin. Since no one is supposed to be anything except with RCCG’s grace and input, then what happens to those who still made it anyway without RCCG? Will they be subverted or brought down in order for the prophecy of Daddy G.O to meet fulfilment? Thus the ground for witchcraft and control is also in place to perpetrate all perversions. It is now we and the others, not the same body of Christ again.
The Church of Rome saw itself as the only Church and the gateway to heaven. She saw herself as the very body of Christ and her pope as the vicar of Christ. In actual fact she saw her traditions as superior to the Bible. Salvation is not by grace or striving to holiness but to be member of the only one and Holy Catholic Church. All kinds of evils were justified against other believers as long as they were not part of our Communion even though they too professed the Name of Jesus. But one day judgment came. A Luther was born.
The Redeemed Christian Church now seems to be going the same way as Roman Catholic Church ( another RCC, what a coincidence)
The signs are becoming visible, the similarities are becoming striking; but I have no time to visit that today.
In the 1920’s to 30’s God mightily used the Cherubim and Seraphim in this nation. But they became too tall for their age and the Ark left them.
Then the CAC bore that Ark until they too allowed pride in their midst as Niyi Adedokun rightly sang So they were humbled. The Ark moved again.
The Deeper Life held sway in the 1980’s and if there was one Movement that God gave the youths of this nation into its hands it was this Movement. Then it too began to see herself as unique, special and look at other Christians as inferior. She became proud of her knowledge or, to use Winston Churchill’s expression, she became “inebriated with the exuberance of her own verbosity”. Some of them actually believed that you can’t go to heaven unless you are a member of Deeper Life Ministry. So, God humbled them, just as He did to CAC and others before them.
It is now the time of the Redeemed, the RCCG. From some of the emanations and statements coming from some of the principal votaries of this denomination it shows they have not learnt much from those that have gone ahead of them. Soon they too will learn the lesson that God has not yet created anyone that He cannot humble. As a prophet I know this. Soon, Nigerians will know it.
.© Moses Oludele Idowu ( Nov 30, 2019)