The fervent prayers made for Africa during the recently concluded All Nations’ Congress of Pastors/Ministers Prayer Network-Africa (PMPN-A) has rekindled the hope for spiritual solution to the continent’s sticky situation especially its political and economic challenges.
At the event, clerics were also taught on how to confront the forces of darkness which have pinned down the continent for many decades.
The congress which was entitled, ‘Possessing the seven mountains of the nations,’ had in attendance heads of different Christian denominations; bishops; members of Intercessors for Africa; and other participants from different parts of the continent.
The week-long event which featured plenary session; school of ministry; 24 hours prayer watch; counselling and word ministrations, also attracted seasoned preachers and teachers of the gospel across Africa.
Some of the notable preachers were the International Coordinator of (PMPN-A), Apostle Victor Uchegbulam; National/International Coordinator of Christian Pentecostal Mission (CPM) International, Rev Dr Mrs. Mercy Ezekiel; former president of the Makerere University Christian Union, Elder Laban Jjumba; President of Voice of Adonai Ministries International, Dr Kole Akinboboye; founding President of the Logo Rhema Foundation for Leadership Resource Development, Dr Abu Bako; Very Rev Dr Godwin Ikechukwu and the President/founder of Heathrow Getaway International Centre, U.K, Apostle Joshua Jogo.
Others were Archbishop of Church of Uganda, Rt, Rev Stanley Ntagali; President of the New Covenant Family Ministries and Senior Pastor of Dominion City Church, Pastor David Ogbueli; founder of Christ LivingSpring Apostolic Ministry, Pastor Wole Oladiyun; General Overseer of the Old Path Revival Commission, Pastor Alfred Itiowe; South African based Prophetess Laurette Mkati; founder of His Church Kingdom Ministries, Sandton, Johannesburg, South Africa, Apostle Linda Gobodo; Pastor Mrs. Ebus Uchegbulam.
Other preachers including the Core-East Regional Coordinator of Intercessors for Nigeria, Pastor David Dimoji: founder of Logos Aflame Ministries, Lagos, Pastor Mrs. Grace Johnson; Bishop I.S Eze; Dr John Ikeorgu; Apostle Seth Akhilele and Pastor Andriy Kusenko and Steve Olumuyiwa among others.
With this lineup of firebrand preachers and intercessors, the Youth Centre, Redemption Camp, Lagos –Ibadan Expressway venue of the programme was overflowing with divine presence throughout the duration of the congress. As expected, prayers were made day after day for the liberation of Africa from demonic manipulation.
Apostle Uchegbulam, in his opening remarks, harped on the need for spiritual reawakening among ministers and charged the delegates to equip themselves for the raging battle between the forces of darkness and the Kingdom of God. He urged Christians to reclaim the domains and territories in Africa which strange forces have claimed illegally. He reminded the congregation that this year’s convention was tailored for the development of strategies for the necessary spiritual tools needed to fight the battle for God.
He said, “God’s desire is that each of us will be fully equipped to understand the domain we have been called to operate and to know how to effectively communicate Jesus Christ and manifest the gospel and the power of His Kingdom on these domains.”
Uchegbulam charged the congregation to ward-off the devil’s onslaught in the society through biblical principles, saying that the congress’ teachings and prayers should transform the participants into spiritual generals that can transform the world.
“God is causing a shift among us in the spirit. This congress must cause you as a person to shift by allowing God to cause a restructuring of your life and ministry. Everything in the society now is shifting towards the end of time. We see from science, social media that so much have begun to happen faster than we could imagine. The church therefore must not continue in our old ways of doing things. We must move beyond the church wall into the real society for the harvest is ripe already but fewer have always been the labourers.”
Delivering her message entitled, ‘Rahab, the woman of uncommon faith,’ Rev. Dr Mrs. Ezekiel told the participants that God could use them irrespective of their backgrounds. She said that God does not look for a perfect person to use but that he can transform and make use of those that made themselves available to him.
She said although Rahab was an idol worshipper since she was an Amonite and not an Israelite, yet God delivered her from destruction and used her to save others.
She said, “God can use anybody. It does not matter where you come from. The important thing about God is that he does not look for a perfect person, because he is able to change all things. God picked Rahab from the dungeon. We have other women like Rahab, such as Ruth and Bathsheba. These women should have nothing to do with God at all, but God picked them up and prospered them. The same God will find you and pick you up and make you the light of your family and community. If you look at these women, they were so simple but God picked them and distinguished them and gave them a place in the Royal Family of our Lord Jesus Christ. God will show you mercy and do something unusual for you in the Name of Jesus.”
Rev Mrs. Ezekiel enumerated the qualities that stood Rahab out in the midst of others such as her eagerness for salvation; her uncommon faith that made her risked her life in order to hide the two Israelis spies in her house.
According to her, Rahab did not fear the wrath of the king of Jericho whether she would be killed or thrown out. She hooked on to that uncommon faith. She was determined to face the consequences of her action; if it is death, she could die; she thought of the cost to her life and her family, but she did not fear but acted on her faith and that faith opened a door for her.
“Rahab became a saviour of the whole family. She carried along everyone who identified with her. Her sign was the scarlet. The spies told her to put a scarlet lash on the window side from where she let out the spies. Today, our own sign or scarlet is the blood of Jesus Christ,” she said.
Also speaking on the topic, “Dealing with the giants in Africa,” Dr Steve Ogan described the different giants confronting Africa from different locations and how to deal with them. He said that giants confronting Africa are territorial in nature, stressing that they are the products of disobedience.
“Giants are abnormal in their nature. Goliath is opposed to the will of God. We must examine the giants that confront Africa,” he said.
In his ministration, entitled, ‘Subduing kingdom,’ Apostle Emmanuel Kure warned that the church cannot use old weapons to fight new battles. He advised church leaders to discover new weapons to fight the new wars.
He said, “If your enemy is comfortable and have not felt threatened, then there is problem. Politicians have spoken, people at different levels in Nigeria have spoken, but when the prophet speaks, something different happens because the prophet speaks the word of God. It is not yet Uhuru for Nigeria. The increase in the Boko Haram activities is a sign that God is saying something to the nation, Nigeria.
He also warned the church in some parts of African to gear up for a surprise, stressing, “The church in Malawi, South Africa and Uganda should be ready for a shakeup. The forces of the land will soon rise to question the identity of Christians in these nations. When the Bible talks of vengeance, it means redemption for the children of God in the face of troubles. The death of Christians in Nigeria is provoking God the more to bring his judgment faster. In 2016, the unfulfilled prophecies will be fulfilled. The hook of God will connect the spiritual with the physical to fulfill prophecies of God. It will be a time of troubles by which God will save his people from all the troubles of the enemy.”
Pastor David Ogbueli who preached on the theme, ‘Challenges to church growth,’ advised men and women of God to stop making excuses on why their churches are not growing.
“Stop making excuses for churches not growing under your roof. Church growth is both qualitative and quantitative. It is both spiritual and physical. It is both growing in length and growing in breadth. Just as it is required to do a visibility study before setting up a business, the same is required in church planting,” he said.
Quoting from the Book of Isaiah chapter two, he said, “God has made provision in these last days to solve the problems of people as a means of evangelism. We only need to make ourselves ready and available to tap on what God is doing. The idea of the West is that God should be removed from the world so that people should enjoy life of heaven here on earth. The West is preaching man without God.”
Pastor Ogbueli said that a church has five stages of development; a baby church; a growing church; a grown church; a parent Church; a fully grown church and finally a dying church except a revival takes place.
According to him, a real church is Christ centered and not man centered. False churches teach organizational leadership and not spiritual leadership.
“Church is a living organism and that living organism lives in a structure. Two things push us towards God, pain or passion,” he said.
He stated the signs of a living church to include, prayer, worship, balanced doctrine and disciple making.
“A healthy church is a praying church; it has spirit filled worship, not entertainment. A healthy church has a sound and balanced doctrine; it is a mission church that is strong in making disciples and growing leaders. A healthy church is properly structured. A healthy church does not exist as a congregation, but as a fellowship,” he said.