Prophet TB Joshua of the Synagogue, Church of All Nations (SCOAN), has prophesied this period we are in as a year of humility. What is the meaning of humility? Why should we be humble? It is very important for the Church, and indeed the world at large, to listen to this prophet. The cumulative effects of the “Fearful Year” he predicted are still with us. The epic of the fearful year is probably the ongoing COVID-19 that is ravaging the entire globe with no respect for any class of person, race or gender. The prophet had been correct all along, after all.
Humility is often characterized as genuine gratitude and lack of arrogance, a modest view of one’s self. It is a critical and continuous emphasis of godliness, as we are called upon to be humble followers of the Lord Christ and trust in the wisdom and salvation of God. Proverbs 22:4 gives us a deeper look into the scriptural meaning of humility. “Humility is the fear of the Lord,” as a very precise definition. Not only does being humble consist of trusting God and following his will, but furthermore fearing the consequences of neglecting God’s commands for truth, love, work ethic, mercy, and beyond. Humility is recognizing the magnificent power of God and the potential retribution He will condemn upon us if we do not aim our purpose towards righteousness. The prophecy for this period may also consist of meekness and a life of service and giving to humanity.
As an example of humility, we may recall the late Mother Teresa who was a teacher in a school in India. All her needs were met in the convent where she lived. However, she chose to give up her life in that convent to live with the poorest of the poor on the streets of Calcutta, taking care of the very sick and dying. She took care of people with whom no one else wanted to bother. The Missionaries of Charity is the name of the religious order Mother Teresa started. Women who join this order give up their possessions and live a life of great simplicity. When they find people dying in the streets and the slums, they take them into their hospitals, clean them up, give them medical care, and if they cannot recover, provide a clean and sanitary place to die with dignity. Similarly, Prophet TB Joshua has a Ministry of Giving as part of SCOAN regular activities around the globe. This was his first activity in many low neighbourhoods in Lagos from the late 1980s to 1990s. In this COVID-19 pandemic era, the Church has been praying and encouraging the public not to fear or panic but to be humble.
The world has indeed been humbled and brought to a low position where nations with high technologies in warfare are helpless before coronavirus. The Church of Christ will remain strong as one body of Christ, but many individual congregations may go underground or merge with others. It is a new revolution and everyone will be humbled, except we manifest the fear of the Lord. The new World Order will emerge after the year of humility to redefine the new international relationships and economic cooperation. No nation will be too strong to fail henceforth but those who rely solely on Jesus Christ will survive. Philippians 2:3-11 says in part, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus. ..”.
As we struggle through in this new era of humility, (because humility is not natural to man in the flesh full of ego), let us remember what the scripture says in 2 Chronicles 7:13-15, especially verse 13 that is very popular. “If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence (COVID-19) among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attend unto the prayer that is made in this place”. Our prayer is that God will continually put His word and message in the mouth of our prophet and those who are going to teach on this subject of humility until we all become like Christ Jesus.
Prof. R. A. Ipinyomi, University of Ilorin, Nigeria