BY ARUBELA OKE/span>
The biblical precept: “Many are called but few are chosen”, taken from the parable of the wedding banquet fits in very aptly with the happenings in present day Christendom.
It is like restating an obvious fact that many of the “tithe merchants” cum political jobbers out of brazen effrontery have claimed to be called to the ministry by God when in reality they “called” themselves to the flourishing pastorpreneur “ministries” in order to feather their own nests at the expense of the brainwashed and pauperized congregants, all in the name of God Almighty as the late popular music maestro, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, once asserted.
It is instructive to note that the Old Testament warns us not to blaspheme God, insult or attack a prophet: “Touch not my anointed and to my prophet, do no harm” (Psalm 105:15).
We cannot shy away from remarking that no fewer than seven “Oracles of God” fed the Nigerian electorate with unfounded and inaccurate prophecies about the outcome of the February 25 presidential election which ended in favour of Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
At this juncture, it is imperative to ask: “Tani eniyan Olorun ?”, meaning, who is the true prophet of God?”
The answer to the above question is not far-fetched:
In Christendom, there are many archetypal characters in the order of “Brother Jero” in Wole Soyinka’s Trials of Brother Jero.
An archetype, aptly delineated in the mould of “Brother Jero”, is typically trendy as he is elegantly dressed, fluent and lives with aplomb.
He does everything manipulatively possible to keep his congregant (Brother Chume) stuck-up in the web of religious servitude and indecision in order to perpetually stay in business.
He ensures that his exploitative agenda holds sway through his artful deployment of the potent tools of religious propaganda and hypocrisy.
Put simply, the tithe-merchants and political hucksters always deceitfully and irredeemably rewire the reasoning faculties of their congregants to such an extreme extent that God Almighty plays second fiddle to them in the churchy order of events. Their veritable tools of manipulation are prophecies and prosperity-seeking sermons.
And Nigeria’s unkind political climate offers them a safe haven!
Without mincing words, a groundswell of the poisoning of well abounds in many of the hallowed spots of worship which have been religiously converted to money-spinning and political propaganda arenas, nay, epicentres for promoting an ethnocentric agenda as well as the political aspirations of their political god-fathers or allies.
The altars are no longer hallowed; they have ceased to perform their primordial functions of disseminating the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ for the sake of winning and salvation of lost souls. Rather, many pastorpreneur multitudinal domes have become epicentres for concocting inaccurate and unfounded prophecies for easy consumption by sheepish and psychologically disoriented congregants.
Needless to say that some of these altars have metamorphosed into profane junkyards of political schism, acrimony and campaigns of calumnies and innuendoes.
Without mincing words, several tithe-merchants and Nostradamuses have made a mockery of the WORD of God, both in terms of logos and rhema, all for their self-serving motives!
“Ejo nbe lorun aro dake.”, meaning, “Everyone shall be held accountable for his misdeeds.”
Likewise, it is equally surprising that the worshippers-proletariats in these ‘business centres’ are consistently offered a full dosage of mental tonic to ensure unusual levels of success and longevity.
A promise whose fulfillment is only premised on the congregants’ vile submission to the whims and caprices of the so-called “Men of God!”
The latest assault on the congregants’ psyche was made manifest in the pastorpreneur Nostradamuses’ inaccurate prophecies or discordant prognostications about the just concluded February 25 presidential election in which Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu emerged President elect.
Their prophecies, nay, human-flesh inspired political permutations and calculations all turned AWRY!
Funnily enough, one of such exuberant pastor preneurs and political hunksters, in defence of his ethno-prejudicial political disposition completely got lost in verbiage during his vituperative and vilifying sermon, fighting a lost battle because his favourite candidate lost out to another candidate in the February 25 presidential election.
Regrettably, the gullible and prosperity-seeking congregants took everything their “tithe-merchants” cum Nostradamuses fed them with hook, line and sinker!
Another self-acclaimed “Oracle of God” vowed to revert back to “Ifa worship” should his prophecy about Tinubu losing the presidential election fail to come to pass.
He has not yet made his promise to jettison the Christian faith for “Ifa” worship!
I wonder if they will ever be remorseful for their mistakes in granting anthropomorphic status to the Invisibly Omniscient, Omnipotent, and Immortal God.
At times, whenever I see them preaching fire and brimstone sermons on the electronic media in order to justify their glib prophecies nay , their discordant political calculations and permutations deploying Queen’s English, I cannot but help screaming: “Baba God, e ma ni suuru ganni o!”, meaning, God Almighty, you are super gentle!
It is a truism that the more often a lie is told, the more likely people are to believe it.
How long shall we continue to deify and celebrate these self-serving Nostradamuses of our time despite their endless glib prophetic utterances?
Now is the time to sift the wheat from the chaff by taking a cue from the Bible’s inspiring injunction:
“Do not listen to the words of the prophets who say to you, ‘You will not serve the king of Babylon,’ for they are prophesying lies to you. ‘I have not sent them,’ declares the Lord. ‘They are prophesying lies in my name. Therefore, I will banish you and you will perish both you and the prophets who prophesy to you.”(Jeremiah 27:14-15)
.Aruleba Fabamise Oke @ Deprof (Ado Ekiti)