Over Their Criticism Of The Continued Closure Of Churches
What Pastor POJU OYEMADE Said
A few days back, Presiding Bishop of Winners Chapel (or Living Faith Church Worldwide), David Oyedepo, said that a federal government directive to keep churches closed to curtail the spread of COVID-19 was wrong. The Pastor said how government open market could for more than 5 hours but won’t allow Churches for 2 hours.
Oyedepo, who is one of Nigeria’s mega-church pastors with a large global following, said that keeping the churches shut while allowing markets to operate from 9 am to 3 pm, was ungodly.
“For people to be allowed to be in the market for six hours and can’t be in church for two hours, it’s an upside-down way of looking at things. There is more hope for a poor and wise child than an old foolish king who would no longer be admonished (Ecclesiastes 4:13),” Oyedepo blared.
“Which one is more orderly? The market or the church? I can smell a rat. The Lord spoke to me so strongly yesterday. I can smell a rat. This is about how do we stop the church from exploding? People that are involved don’t know it o.
The greatest headache of the powers of darkness is the growth and expansion of the church. Worldwide. Worldwide. No civilization has ever endured without a foundation in Christ. Where were the philosophers of Greece? I can smell a rat.
“The forces of darkness are influencing people at various levels, targeting the church, because the growth and expansion of the church is the greatest headache of the devil. But the gates of hell shall not prevail,” he declared. According to him, it was part of the moves to stop the church of God from expanding..
Another top man of God who also feels the same way is Pastor Chris Oyakhilome of Christ Embassy
Oyakhilome, who is the general overseer of Believers’ Love World, popularly known as Christ Embassy, said such leaders were not true Christians as they did not ask the government for time to pray and consult with their congregation.
Ironically, the cleric also complied with the government’s directive. He made the latest remarks in a telecast to his members.
He also said the government would soon begin to classify churches based on their compliance with directives on the COVID-19 pandemic. According to him, their swift compliance with the directive is the reason Nigeria is yet to “see the hand of God.”
He also queried the motive for any planned vaccination against the pandemic.
“What they are using to test, do you know what it is? Do you know why it can show positive and negative? Do you know? A virus they told us they are still studying, why don’t they study it first? They are still studying it and they already have a vaccine that could be ready in July for a virus they are still studying,” the pastor said.
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 in Nigeria, bans have been placed on all social and religious gatherings in the country to curb the spread of the virus.
Mr Oyakhilome also said that the men of God who were invited by the government to discuss the closure of churches were not truly for Christ.
He said pastors should have asked for time to invite other pastors for prayer against the pandemic before consenting to closures of churches, but prayer never came to their minds because they were not truly prayerful.
As Ministers of God, you are called for such a meeting and you couldn’t say give us a few days, then you call all the ministers and say this is what we just heard from a government representative, we need to pray.
“Then you would have seen the hand of God. But you were not thinking about the Father’s house. Do you know what it means to shut down the congregation of the Lord? Do you know what it means? It never meant anything to you,” he said.
He added that pastors who have been sending warnings to their members to stay out of the church are not truly of Christ, reminding them that no amount of compensation they receive from the government can replace the praise and worship of God.
“Pastors and ministers have been sending strong warnings to others not to venture into the church because of the virus. That’s because Christ has never truly been your Lord, you’ve been the master of your life all these years. You’ve never truly known him.”
The controversial cleric also predicted that the government would soon create churches tagged “COVID-19 compliant” for people who have never been infected with the virus, saying those churches would never be the churches of Jesus Christ.
Oyakhilome, who told his congregation that he had a lot to tell them, said churches would soon be asked to set up testing centres because people would not be going for testing.
Pastor Poju Oyemade, was on Friday 8th of May released a powerful message where he disagreed with the two Pastors on the reopening of Churches.
PASTOR POJU OYEMADE DISAGREES WITH PASTOR OYEDEPO & PASTOR CHRIS OYAKHILOME
The Senior Pastor of The Covenant Christian Centre Lagos, Pastor Poju Oyemade, has disagreed with prominent preachers against the continuous closure of churches over the COVID-19 pandemic.
Though the lockdown has been eased in Lagos, Ogun and FCT, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered that worship centres will remain shut till further notice. But founder of Christ Embassy, Pastor Chris Oyakhilome, slammed the authorities for closing churches, saying they should be healing centres. Founder of Winners Chapel, Bishop David Oyedepo, backed Oyakhilome, stating the continuous closure of churches was suspicious. According to him, it was part of the moves to stop the church of God from expanding.
But Oyemade, who marked his birthday on his Instagram page, said the closure of churches did not in any way stop the Holy Spirit from working. Making reference to the Bible, he said: “The sick healed in the book of Acts were healed on the streets, in people’s homes, in public places and not within the four walls of a Church.” He added: “Closing the doors of a physical building does not in any way mean the closure of the anointing of the Spirit from working. “Church buildings may be shut down but true faith and the anointing of the Spirit have not stopped working. “There is a difference between expression of emotions and the manifestation of the anointing to heal the sick.
“There is nowhere in Jesus’s ministry where the healing of the sick was preceded by a congregational service. “In the Book of Acts, the sick were healed predominantly on the streets with no fanciful service going on. “Closure of a church building does not stop the rivers of living water from flowing out of your belly. It resides in our inner man. “There was collective prayer to receive a supply of the Spirit, which led to outdoor manifestations. He referred to Apostle Paul insisting Christians don’t have to be together in a physical space to receive that supply.
“Did he not say to the Church at Phillipi, I know this shall turn to my salvation through your prayers and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus? The Church was miles away from where Paul was. “Charles Finney began a massive revival by people praying in their homes all keeping watch at the same time. They all chose the exact time to pray and they did in their homes until the Spirit broke out on the streets.
“They did not criticise any other Church or ministry of weakness. Criticising others doesn’t attest to the fact that you have strength. They only stayed with God until something broke out on the streets.”