It is very remarkable that God uses people whom human beings consider useless; and may decide to use people considered sinners like Rahab the harlot, working in the red-light district of Jericho and was used to win the battle of Jericho; Jephthah, who was born to an unwed mother and who was used to deliver Israel; and several others who were raised from obscurity to prominence; Moses a murderer, and Jacob the cheat. God calls His people for reasons best known to Him and anoints them to be carriers of His grace. When God calls a person, it is such a great privilege! However, with every privilege goes a great responsibility! According to Rev. Wale Babatunde, the call demands great humility! When God elects or appoints a person to carry out a special assignment, it is not because he or she is intrinsically better than those that are called to serve! For example, when God called Israel into a special covenant relationship to be a kingdom of priests, (Exodus 19:6) He was quick to warn them that He did this not because they were better than other nations. In fact, God said they were the least among the nations! This was meant to deflate any inflated ego they might have Therefore, God does not use the qualified who would compete for Him with His glory. Instead, He uses the ridiculous to do the miraculous. Indeed, the move of the Creator is best reflected by the fact that God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise, the weak things to confound the things that are mighty, and the things which are despised and thought of as nothing, He has chosen to confound the wise. (Cor 1:27)
Let us first examine what it means to be a Christian in order to be able to act responsibly in line with the dictates of God Who will never bend his rule concerning His requirements. Christianity drew its name from its founder, Jesus of Nazareth and the earliest adherents of Christianity were Jews from the region of Galilee, north of Jerusalem. Africa is reputed to be the worlds fastest growing continent in terms of Christian spiritual growth and Nigeria is inhabited by people constituting twenty percent of Africas population. Christian was first mentioned in Acts 11:26. Thus, a Christian is one who is Christ-like, who walks in the foot-steps of Christ and seeks to influence the world like Christ. A Christian, though living in the world is not of the world (II Cor. 6:14-18). Therefore, says Jide Orimogunje, a Christian is one who has, according to Philippians 4:9, learned from Christ Christian practices, received from Christ-Christian blessings, heard from Christ Christian doctrines; and seen Christ spiritually Christian miracles. According to Pastor Enoch Adeboye, the simplest definition of a disciple is an apprentice. An apprentice is someone who is attached to a master, who likes the trade of his master and wants to be like his master. In John 5:19, Jesus says He is an apprentice of His Father. Matthew 7:24-25 says a servant is not greater than his master. Yet He says you will do greater things than He did. One thing you find with apprentices is that they carefully observe their master and repeat what they see him do. This is in line with the scriptures which state that: verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth in me, the works that I do shall he also do; and greater works than these shall he do, because I go unto my Father.
A TASKING ASSIGNMENT
Liberating the world from the pangs of the devil this end-time, which Christians believe would close with the Rapture, is without doubt, a herculean and gargantuan assignment, considering the level of moral decay in human societies all over the world. This has, however, not deterred servants of God from pursuing the agenda of God for humanity. In answering the call to service, Gods servants over time have been able to pull the hand of God towards averting retrogression, in spite of the disturbing signals of conflict and catastrophes here and there through ceaseless intercessions and supplications to God. Moses did for the nation of Israel; while other prophets of old: Jeremiah, Isaiah, Samuel and Ezekiel also did. The task involves delivering messages of future restoration and hope to the people, while also seeking Gods face for the common good of the whole world. From the foregoing, it would be deduced that it is dangerous to go into un-commanded assignments. If God requires your service, He will call you and empower you like He did in the case of Moses, Amos and several others who were hesitant.
The exploits of God, through some notable Nigerian servants of God, whose accomplishments are legendary and who have joined the Saints Triumphant are worthy of being sought-after. These include Bishop Ajayi-Crowther, Apostle Joseph Ayo Babalola, Prophet Moses Orimolade Tunolase, Elder Jacob Kehinde Coker of the African Church, Revd Moses Ladejo Stone of the Baptist Church, Revd. (Dr) Emmanuel Ajayi Dahunsi of the Baptist Convention, Prophet Josiah Ositelu of the Aladura Movement, Revd Josiah Olufemi Akindayomi, founder of the Redeemed Christian Church of God; Rev. Emmanuel Ajayi Dahunsi of the Baptist Church; Dominic Cardinal Ekandem of the Catholic Church; Prophet G.O. Fakeye of the Cherubim & Seraphim Church; Apostle David Olulana Babajide; Prophet Timothy Oluwole Obadare, Evangelist Timothy Iyanda of Go Ye Evangelical Ministry, Archbishop Joseph Abiodun Adetiloye; Archbishop Benson Andrew Idahosa, a charismatic tele-evangelist; who together with Evangelist Timothy Aremu Iyanda revolutionalized the face of electronic media evangelism; Revd James Abayomi Boyejo of the Foursquare Gospel Church, and other flag-wavers considered as notable workers who served God whole-heartedly while they sojourned on Planet Earth.
The ferocious prayers of the 1920s and 1930s evidently laid the groundwork for the work of God and the increasing tidal waves of evangelism, rolling from Nigeria to other nations of the world, across the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Arguably, the time has come again for serious intercessions for Nigeria and indeed the whole world and Nigerian priests are taking extra-ordinary bold moves to liberate humanity for Christ. Revd (Prof) Akin Omoyajowo, in the publication Church makers in Nigeria traced the evolution and phenomenal growth of Christianity and asserted that a new era in Christianity was introduced with the emergence of the Independent Churches from the second decade of the last century. He states that: the First World War had just ended and the economic depression which accompanied it was telling on everybody. Then came the terrible influenza epidemic which in Lagos alone claimed thousands of lives. Having mixed with white priests and gaining the understanding that they were not superior in terms of forging relationships with God, the native priests prayed fervently after receiving visions from God to call the church to a life of prayers as early as 1918 through an Anglican Church in Isonyin, Ijebu area of Ogun State of Nigeria. He continues that these were followed by the birth of Faith Tabernacle in 1923, and which later became the Apostolic Church, which also later metamorphosed in 1930 into the Christ Apostolic Church. The Cherubim and Seraphim Church which was founded by Apostle Moses Orimolade Tunolase and Christianah Abiodun Akinsowon came alive in 1925, while the Church of the Lord (Aladura) came into existence in 1930. All these churches have made remarkable contributions to the exponential growth of Christianity in Nigeria.
Regrettably, unusual occurrences, that are signs of the end-time have led to increased sexual sins such as rape, homosexuality, lesbianism, masturbation, incest, fornication, adultery, prostitution, and lust of the eyes. Sexual sins ruin destinies, result in broken homes; curable and incurable diseases, ruin emotions and cause ultimately, eternal death and damnation. It is this hopeless picture of the world that those who submit to the Lordship of Jesus Christ are being called to reshape through the preaching of the gospel and standing in the gap like Biblical Moses, and other prophets of old did for the children of Israel. The messages of servants of God have a major plank of let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
The fire of revival in Nigeria has continued to glow intensely and aggressively as the rapture approaches. Such is the intensity and vibrant nature of the service rendered in Gods vineyard by Nigerias leading lights of the gospel that many have claimed that God has chosen and positioned Nigeria strategically for the second coming of Christ. Of note is Pastor Matthew Ashimolowos declaration that the waves of revivals in Nigeria could be clearly divided into three parts. These, according to him are the revivals of the 1930s engineered by the Aladura Churches and which brought about salvation and spontaneous explosion of Christianity; the end of Nigerias civil war in 1970 which he said gave birth to the born-again generation and increased tracts distribution and the latter part of the 1970s which opened the doors to Word of Faith and Christian publications of renowned servants of God like Kenneth E.Hagins and Kenneth Copeland; accompanied by preaching of practicalities of Pentecostal beliefs. These beliefs radically changed the understanding of many Christians about the preaching of the word of God, particularly the application of faith.
Relating his experience in his publication: I Believe in Visions, Kenneth E. Hagin said the world has seen and experienced many healings, but will now witness amazing miracles not yet seen before. In a revelation, Jesus Christ told Hagin that all the gifts of the Spirit will be in operation in the Church in these last days and the Church will do greater things than what the Early Church did. It will have greater power, signs, and wonders than were recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. He quoted the Lord as revealing to him the fact that we have seen and experienced many healings, but we will now behold amazing miracles that have not been seen before. Jesus continued: More and more miracles will be performed in the last days which are just ahead, for it is time for the gift of the working of miracles to be more in prominence. We now have entered into the era of the miraculous. Many of my people will not accept the moving of my Spirit and will turn back and will not be ready to meet me at my coming. Many will be deceived by false prophets and miracles of satanic origin. But follow the word of God, the Spirit of God, and me and you will not be deceived. I am gathering my own together and I am preparing them, for the time is short.
ENLIST IN THE END-TIME ARMY OF GOD
It is possible for you to achieve more than those patriarchs who gave their all in the service of the Lord did. You could excel more than any of them did through sheer commitment, dedication, strong will and ability to maintain a close relationship with the Holy Spirit Who is our Guide and Companion. Billy Graham, until he joined the Saints Triumphant last year, preached in person to more than 230 million people in more than 185 countries and territories; an unprecedented number. In a publication contained on www.billygraham.org, the man of God was said to have reached the stunning number of people through television, video, film, literature and webcasts. In April 1996, the Billy Graham Evangelical Association sponsored a re-broadcast of one of Billys sermons to an audience of around 2.5 billion in forty-eight languages, and 160 countries; a remarkable feat, as it represented a truly global simulcast To qualify to be used by God and be his friend like Father Abraham, we must comply with spiritual principles. If a man therefore purges himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meant for the Masters use, and prepared unto every good work. The major goal is to make humanity finish well.
In the words of Paul the Apostle: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. The most important relationship that we have is with God. And the power to fulfil our agenda comes from him alone. Therefore, arise NOW, decide to repent and give your life to Jesus Christ Who is able to do, and can indeed do all things. Head for the nearest Bible-believing church to you and ask to be led to Christ. That marks the commencement of your journey on earth that does not end until to report to the Lord Who determines where you spend your eternity (Heaven, at the feet of Jesus Christ; or hell in the everlasting lake of fire under the guidance of Satan). God will bless you as you take that quality decision in your own interest.