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    The Adeboye Attack: Why GOD ALMIGHTY?, By Ken Tadaferua


    It is obvious that Dr. Ijabla is standing here on shaky foundations built on recklessness or ignorance. It is obvious he has no clue who God is and has limited the divine Omega to the peccadilloes of some pastors or religious power or wealth mongers. It is common wisdom not to abuse or denigrate that which you do not know. God is not Pastor Adeboye. If we have a little modicum of awe for this mighty universe, or even for how our personal bodies work, then we must show some respect.

    The buzz in the social media is the blistering attacks on Enoch Adejare Adeboye, professor of mathematics, influential pastor and general overseer of the estimated 12 million member, Redeemed Christian Church of God, on some Adeboye statements and on religion generally, by a Nigerian US-based medical doctor, Dr. Ijabla Raymond.

    Not much is known of Dr. Ijabla, except of course that he is an alumnus of the University College Hospital, Ibadan, now resident in America, and is probably a dyed-in-the-wool skeptic or an atheist? Or he may just be one, so angrily frustrated with the practice and many deceptions of religion, that he is grown rabidly anti-God and religion. But be assured he is no longer an unknown quantity for he has, at least, 12 million Adeboye faithfuls to contend with now. You may also want to add some large swathes of Christians who are miffed, if not outraged at his caustic messages.

    Consider this broadside he let fly: “Pastor Adeboye and his other pastopreneur friends need to sell off their jets, repent of their lies, stop robbing their church members through emotional blackmail, and give back what they have stolen.”

    Now, if you think that a heavy punch, consider this: “When I said that Pastor Adeboye and his fellow pastopreneurs are responsible for the corruption in the way a generation of Nigerians think, very few people took notice of my charge.” This is a direct accusation of pastors, often called men of God, as conductors of corruption in Nigeria.

    There are many other charges against Adeboye. But that is for the ebullient pastor and his followers to contend with. I will not judge Dr. Ijabla. Throughout the history of Christianity, lone voices have been raised in condemnation of means and ways of the practice of church leaders and establishment. Dr. Ijabla is not doing something new.

    In 1521, a German professor of theology, Martin Luther, was excommunicated by the Catholic Pope Leo X. Then the German Emperor and congress declared him a heretic, an outlaw, who must not be fed or sheltered and who anyone can kill without legal consequences. (Even God protected Cain who murdered his brother Abel from being killed. A key difference between man and God).

    Luther had railed against what he saw as obnoxious practices of the Pope and the church. Despite the harsh punishments meted to silence him, his ideas gained currency, giving birth to the Reformation and Protestant movement. The RCCG, which Pastor Adeboye leads, is Pentecostal, a grandchild of Martin Luther’s Protestant movement from 1521. Adeboye himself is a rebel of sorts, having veered off from his own father’s Catholicism.

    As far back as 25-30 AD, he who gave birth to Christianity, Jesus Christ, upbraided the Scribes and Pharisees, the supposedly holy and strict enforcers of the laws of Moses. They were the establishment of the Jewish faith. Yet Christ referred to them as: “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?” Matthew 23: 33. He lambasted the Pharisees as whited sepulchers, fools and blind, hypocrites, murderers. He damned them for deceiving men away from Heaven: “But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.” Matthew 23:13.


    We are loaded with so many gifts but man in his foolishness measures God by his same foolishness – the tendency to cheat, steal and focus on earthly pleasures. Dr. Ijabla says malaria and cancers will not kill children if there were a God. But he ought answer these questions: which is easier to do: To share equitably the great gifts which God has in his infinite mercy bestowed on man or to ignore the gifts and ask God to come to share his gifts for us?

    So even Christ himself did attack the tendency of the human establishment of the faith to be overwhelmed by the vices of power, wealth, control and pride to do irreparable damage to the divine will and message of God Almighty. So I do not not have a problem with Dr. Ijabla’s flame throwing on Adeboye and other pastors.

    Where I have a problem with the good doctor, is his disparaging views on religion and God. Let’s consider three of his statements in this regard:

    One: “The truth is that prayers, besides making the believer to feel good about themselves, are an absolute waste of time. They do not grow the economy or an amputated limb. Youth unemployment is at an all time high despite our regular night vigils, prayers and supplications.”

    Two: “It is evident that a God who is interested in human welfare does not exist. If He did, malaria and cancers will not kill millions of children whilst He preoccupies Himself with consensual sex between homosexual couples.”

    Three: “If you want incontrovertible evidence that religion cannot reform the world, then consider the degree of theft and corruption in Nigeria. These problems have become endemic even though practically every Nigerian is a practising Muslim or Christian.”

    It is obvious that Dr. Ijabla is standing here on shaky foundations built on recklessness or ignorance. It is obvious he has no clue who God is and has limited the divine Omega to the peccadilloes of some pastors or religious power or wealth mongers. It is common wisdom not to abuse or denigrate that which you do not know. God is not Pastor Adeboye. If we have a little modicum of awe for this mighty universe, or even for how our personal bodies work, then we must show some respect.

    Man has the greatest power of all creation on earth – the power of choice and he is blessed with and supplied every second of his life with the freest of wealth, the air we breathe, knowledge, gases, waters, vegetation, herbs, fruits, animals, colours, fertile soil, the sun, moon, stars, etc. Or as the good doctor knows, the miracle of life, of the heart that works non stop, the battalions of army of defences in the body, the zillion computer capacity of the human brain and much more that could not have been provided by a freak accident or a human scientist.

    We are loaded with so many gifts but man in his foolishness measures God by his same foolishness – the tendency to cheat, steal and focus on earthly pleasures. Dr. Ijabla says malaria and cancers will not kill children if there were a God. But he ought answer these questions: which is easier to do: To share equitably the great gifts which God has in his infinite mercy bestowed on man or to ignore the gifts and ask God to come to share his gifts for us? To question the one percent of those who corner global wealth and leave the 99 percent to disease and poverty or ask God to come do that which we ought and can do? Is the corruption in Nigeria God made? Do we not see the thieves amongst us, do we not believe their false messages or even kill for them? Did the Cuban Revolution come about as a disdain for God? Why are we the way we are?

    I urge you, Dr. Ijabla to cockroach throughly the illuminating words of Jesus Christ in the entire chapter 23 of the book of Matthew. Your message was sharply etched in the scriptures there, two thousand years ago, about 30 AD, by the fount of wisdom who knew better than disparage God because of a few folks with human flaws.

    Simple. We have discarded the divine rule book and the commandments and ordinances and rules. We have created new gods in men or have come to believe that there is no God. We have thrown away the values of life and replaced them with the fast food rules of damnation where prosperity, easy money, crime and wickedness are the smart ways to live.

    For those who, like Dr. Ijabla, curse at God and religion, I ask, what in God’s rule book is wrong? What is wrong in the Ten Commandments? What is wrong in the Sermon on the Mount? Has man ever bothered to live in accord with these simple commandments and rules? Is living in the name but in negation of God’s commandment tantamount to religion? No. The religion which Dr. Ijabla criticises is not the ordinances of God Almighty but a negation, a misnomer. It is devil worship. If everywhere Dr. Ijabla writes religion, he replaces it with false religion, his ideas will probably make the world a better place.

    Jesus Christ criticised the “religious” establishment without throwing out God or disparaging his omnipotent obviousness in our lives. Martin luther and other reformers did too without attempting to dump God in the waste bin of ignorance. They knew that God is in and around us, as manifest in all creation. In the air we breathe, the water and food we take and in our thoughts. But I will not attempt to convince anyone of the existence of God and his infinite goodness.

    I just know that there is nothing wrong with that which teaches me goodness, fairness and wisdom. I will not begrudge those who worship men or objects or themselves because they have the gift of choice. But I find peace and goodness and joy in the scriptures. How many who call themselves Christians truly study, not read, the scriptures in spirit and not as stories. How many live and lead by the simple God rule: Love thy neighbours as thy self. If we did, would children be dying of malaria and cancer? Would some luxuriate in private jets while millions have no meals?

    Dr. Ijabla, my new friend, I leave you with the words of another medical doctor, Dr. Kent Brantly. Here goes: “When the result was positive, I remember a deep sense of peace that was beyond all understanding. God was reminding me what He taught me years ago, that He will give me everything I need to be faithful to him.” This is an excerpt from the recent silence breaking, God praising, statement made by Dr. Kent Brantly, the 33 year American, father of two and medical director for Samaritan’s Purse who tested positive for Ebola in Liberia. He wrote from the isolation unit of Emory University Hospital, Atlanta, USA, to which he was flown for treatment with an untested serum and from which he is miraculously recovered.

    One last word: I consider scientific achievements as giant steps for mankind but no more than puny primitive scratches on the massive mysteries of the universe. Those who proclaim science and the Big Bang as the immutable laws of wisdom are jokers. Pseudo science, extreme liberalism, false religion, mafia politics are today’s nemesis. They are all man made. Choices made by man. If we live by the simple laws of God, we will wipe out disease and poverty. We have the gifts in and around us to achieve this goal. And it is truly simple. We either don’t use the gifts, ignore them or we worship others to give to us that which is in us.

    Dr. Ijabla lives in the US. He probably hears American political leaders constantly talk about the “values that define us” and make America great. He would do well to read the history of America and how Christian values form the bedrock on which American society and value system were built. So when you say religion cannot reform the world because of the sad Nigerian experience, I urge you to speak of false religion not the Lord’s songs, not his ordinances, not the sermon on the mount. No, not his infinite love.

    I urge you, Dr. Ijabla to cockroach throughly the illuminating words of Jesus Christ in the entire chapter 23 of the book of Matthew. Your message was sharply etched in the scriptures there, two thousand years ago, about 30 AD, by the fount of wisdom who knew better than disparage God because of a few folks with human flaws.

    Ken Tadaferua is a media and marketing communications consultant. Twitter: @ktadaferua
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