Our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms, (Ephesians 6:12). It is a continuous battle for every Christian, day and night, but the battle is rather with the perception of our circumstance and the material world. The circumstance shouldn’t be the focus, COVID-19 isn’t the focus. Apostle Paul says we need to be strong beyond ourselves. We’ll need God’s strength for the conflict. It means that as Christians we are soldiers at war just like a regular soldier in the battlefield.
In that daily encounter we find Proverbs 3:5-6 saying, “Trust in the LORD with all thy heart; and lean not unto thy own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths”. The divine intervention is needed against the unseen enemy described as a roaring lion seeking who it may devour. But again Paul in Romans (8:38-39) tells us that “. . . neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”.
Case after case of events Jesus, the King of kings, demonstrated His authority over disease, nature, demons, sin, over space and time, and authority over death. Jesus did everything to ensure our salvation and freedom from principalities and power according to Colossians (2:13-17). Whereas we’d been dead in sins and uncircumcised flesh, but Jesus has quickened us together with Himself. He has forgiven all our trespasses by taking them out of the way, nailing them to His cross. Jesus destroyed the principalities and powers, triumphing over them and He sets us free from tradition and culture.
This is where Prophet TB Joshua and his team in the Synagogue Church of All Nations, SCOAN, Lagos Nigeria, becomes relevant. Their mission is to evangelize the world on Jesus’ teaching and His Word, making everyone to have the right perception irrespective of circumstances. They teach that some seemingly unfriendly circumstances may be to draw people nearer to God. Therefore a circumstance like COVID-19 pandemic shouldn’t constitute the real enemy but our perception. This, for example, the brethren in SCOAN are demonstrating to the entire world in multiple ways using “Distance not a Barrier to the Move of God” and praying for people. We recall that in (Matthew 8) a centurion came to Jesus on behalf of his paralyzed servant. The emphasis in that story is on the power of the Word of the Lord that goes to any distance with equal power, that by Jesus’ command the sick were healed. Another lesson is the faith of the centurion, a gentile. In particular, communities that can place their trust and faith in Jesus Christ’s healing power like this centurion (Matthew 8:8) should link its entire people in their isolation centres, in a corporate faith, to SCOAN for Jesus’ healing. Jesus heals effectually and permanently. A vaccine, medicine, food, exercise can be used to treat but its God that heals ultimately.
The word of Naaman’s maid in 2 Kings Chapter 5 is very relevant here. The young Israelite taking forcefully to serve as a maid in Syria knew her God and said to her mistress, “. . . Would God my lord were with the prophet that is in Samaria! For he would recover him of his leprosy” (v.3). The maid’s perceived incarceration didn’t deter her from recommending the God of Israel to her captors and masters. Just as when Joshua stood before the angel of the Lord in a filthy garment, (Zechariah 3:3), the young maid knew that her master was in a filthy garment of leprosy. It means Naaman was covered in iniquity that needed to be changed. We all wear a spiritual garment which is not visible and can either be clean or unclean. The garment speaks or describes a lot about who we are in the spirit realm. When our spiritual garment is filthy, it means our spirit in the spiritual realm is polluted or defiled due to sin. Also, the enemy can put a filthy garment upon one’s life to destroy the spiritual and the person, preventing the spiritual ability to achieve or fulfil preordained destiny. Covid-19 is currently the global filthy garment the devil is distributing around. Nobody needs to accept this COVID-19 garment nor wear it.
By the special grace of God in Jesus Christ, our generation also has a prophet in SCOAN, Lagos Nigeria, not only to help us deal with our infirmities or help to remove filthy garments but also to help us see God the right way. The Holy Spirit of God shall give the enlightenment and nations shall perceive by the spirit the needed divine guidance. The apostles of Jesus of old knew Jesus and the Holy Ghost. They knew they hadn’t silver nor gold (Acts 3:6) but what they had would make a 40 years old lame man walking and leaping. Those apostles were baptised and filled with the Holy Ghost. Similar prophet TB Joshua knows Jesus and he is filled with the Holy Ghost. Communities and nations approaching the SCOAN should have faith that they will meet Jesus. We stand as the maid who recommended Naaman to Prophet Elisha and Naaman was healed from wearing a filthy garment of leprosy. The battle is essentially our perception in the natural and inability to see and believe the mighty name of Jesus Christ that heals. Jesus is the Saviour and Redeemer of the whole world. He is still healing, delivering, and replacing any filthy garments with heavenly attires if we come to Him. Emmanuel
Prof. R. A. Ipinyomi, University of Ilorin, Nigeria