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Why Church should use social media to reach more people with the Gospel- Evang. Akeredolu

Evang. Emmanuel T. Akeredolu


The DCC Superintendent of Christ Apostolic Church, Ilorin DCC, Ilorin, Kwara State, Evangelist  Emmanuel Toluwase Akeredolu in this interview with 'Gbenga Bankole speaks on many interesting issues. EXCERPT !

A lot has been said about corona virus. As far as you are concerned, do you see the hand of God in it?


In many of my messages and prayers since the issue of COVID-19 started, I always appeal to God to please have mercy on us. I do tell people that if Satan is fighting you, you can run to God, if man is fighting you, you can run to God, but what if it is God that is fighting the entire world, whom will we run to? You can’t pray that God should attack God. Anytime I want to pray on COVID-19, I love praying to God to have mercy on everyone in the entire world. The sins of the entire world are too much, even more than those of Sodom and Gomarrah. The entire world is supposed to be destroyed by God. People are being killed all over the world every second. Terrorist, ritual or militant killing does not have any meaning to us again because it is too rampant and it doesn’t move us like before. If you listen to news you will hear Pastor so and so was caught with human head or engages in rape. The entire world is overdue for destruction from God. The world would have been destroyed if not because of Jesus Christ who is at the right hand of God pleading on our behalf, begging maybe we can still find more people into the kingdom of God.

Concerning COVID-19, as an individual, I see the hand of God in it because if it is a mistake by the biologist or something they plan to do God sees it and He has many ways to stop them. If they plan to destroy the entire world, God can use His own power to stop it from working. If God wants to deal with a nation or a person, He will enter into someone to do it. The Bible says God sealed the heart of Pharaoh in order for him not to repent because the hand of God was upon him for destruction. For me I think except if God is ready to have mercy on us, no prophetic prayer from anybody can stop COVID-19. Meanwhile, all the children of God will be saved from the disease by the grace of God.



The Bible talks about perilous times. Do you think that COVID-19 is part of the signs of perilous times?

Not yet. When it is time for perilous times the whole world will know, but the saint will not experience the perilous times. Perilous times will come after the rapture. Pandemic, war, violence and other atrocities are signs that the coming of Christ is very near.



In a time like this, what is supposed to be the focus of the Church?

The focus of the Church in a time like this is to preach more about Christ to people. If you study the situation of things this period, you will discover that people turn to God more than before. It was reported in the media that some Indians drove their idols to the sea and they said it is only God that can save them and the entire world. There are a lot of people who are praying than ever. Millions of people are preaching on Facebook, Zoom, YouTube and other social media platforms. Since the issue of COVID-19 started I have been preaching on Facebook on a daily basis from 9pm to 10pm. People from US, Europe and other parts of the world listen to my message, but before now I didn’t do it. I used to preach only in the Church and on radio.

As Christians we should use social media at this period to preach the gospel to more people. I didn’t use Mixlr (online radio) before but now you can listen to me on Mixlr preaching the Gospel of Christ just as you watch me on Facebook. Those who don’t have access to Facebook can listen to me on Mixlr. At times after preaching on Facebook, I will discover that nothing less than 900 people watched it. When you check the following day you will see that over 1000 people have watched it. I now reach more people than when I preached in Church. This period is an opportunity for everyone to sit down and amend your ways. Anybody can die at any point and at anytime because as a Christian we are not supposed to be afraid of death, though we must be careful and try as human beings to protect ourselves. However, every Christian must be ready to die anytime. Baba Babajide used to say “if a Christian dies untimely he or she will enter the kingdom of God untimely or immediately. There are a lot of people who have died without preparing or expecting it. This is an opportunity to amend our ways. Whatever we have been doing before that is against the will of God we should repent from it.



There are some people who have linked COVID-19 with upcoming 5G network. What is your thought on this?

I don’t believe in that. 5G has nothing to do with COVID-19. We have been using 3G and 4G networks without any problem. I am sure few years after we start using 5G, 6G will be introduced. 5G is just a network. I don’t believe it has any connection with COVID-19.  It has nothing to do with COVID-19. It may be a scientific error that is responsible for COVID-19, but God knows about it.



Some people are saying that ‘one religion’ that United Nations and Pope are proposing to religious leaders across the globe is one of the plans of the Antichrist to shut the Church. Do you think the Church (or worship centres) can be shut permanently even before the coming of Christ?

If we look at it critically, the Pope himself is not a Christian, but a Catholic. Many of them don’t believe in the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. They believe in Islam and partially believe the Bible. If you see Catholic Bible, there are some passages of the real Bible that are not there. They also have other passages of the Bible that is not in the popular one we are using. I know Satan has a hand in what is going on across the globe regarding ‘one religion’ but it won’t work because it is written in the Bible that the gate of hell shall not prevail over the Church. They have been trying for many years to silence the Church, but it is not possible. Even if they make attempt, they can only close the worship centres, not the Church. As an individual I am a Church.



What is your message to state governments who have failed to open worship centres till now?

I pray that God will visit them and tell them the right thing to do. They know what they are doing. They are playing games. They are receiving money from World Bank, United Nations and some private organizations. The number of COVID-19 patients in Nigeria keeps increasing on daily basis, but we don’t know where they are keeping them. They are just giving us figures. They should show us those patients in isolation centres; they may not show their faces. They should allow the press to go to the isolation centres to interview them.
I want to appeal to state Governors to allow worship centres to open. Corona virus doesn’t live in church or mosque. In our assembly here, we use thermometer to check your temperature before you are allowed into the church compound, you wash your hands with soup and sanitizer and you must use your facemask. In the church we give ourselves social distance and we are enjoying our services. We hold two services for one and half hour each. Governors should allow people to come back to church where we can pray and God will have mercy over the entire world.


What is your advice to ministers who are being affected negatively by the lockdown of churches or COVID-19?

It is only in CAC you will hear Pastors saying God says I should not do any other business. Up till now I am still against it. If you gather 20 of the Pastors who usually make such statement, ask them, ‘did you receive that message from God or from the Holy Spirit?’ I always teach Pastors under me how to make money since I was District Superintendent. When I was in Lagos I challenged one of my Lady Evangelists who come to church from 6am and will be in the church till evening to find something doing. She told me she was selling charcoal and fire wood before God called her into the ministry. Due to the fact that I have two male and two female Evangelists, I scheduled them to be one male and one female for each week. I told the woman to go back to her charcoal business same as others. One of them came back in six months and told me she wanted to buy a land. To the glory of God, the woman and her husband are living inside their house presently. They have built their house. As a minister, if God does not want you to do any other business in the ministry, He will categorically tell you. When a Pastor who has no business did not receive any salary for two months, he will start panicking. To the glory of God I know how I assisted people financially during the lockdown. Every Pastor is supposed to have a source of income apart from the salary coming from the church. If you have another source of income as a Pastor you cannot be messed up by Elders in your assembly.



There is no doubt that the economy of the world, Nigeria in particular won’t remain the same after COVID-19, what is the plan of God for His children in a time like this?

Anybody who knows himself or herself as a Christian must not panic because we are children of God. He knows what to do concerning us. I have never disturbed myself concerning tomorrow because if truly I am a servant of God and His son, He has so many ways to take care of His children. He will take care of us. We shouldn’t be disturbed. I never for once during the lockdown thought of what I will give to my wife or children because I know the God I am serving will provide for me. If I serve Him as child and servant, He knows what to do to me. If the Federal Government of Nigeria can provide for its military, I know my God can do more than that. My message to everybody is that we should remain calm, trust your God and He will take care of you.
               

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