TB Joshua and relevance of church in contemporary society

tb joshua ministry

Prophet T.B. Joshua

By Gareth Watson

TB Joshua… In the West many view the church as obsolete. In the UK for example, ancient cathedrals that date back to the 1400s are appreciated for their opulent architectural edifice rather than the social fabric that enlivens them on Sundays.

Contemporary issues that face the modern society such as access to education, promoting diversity in elite universities, marital problems, mental health matters and issues of depression are rarely tackled in a single church sitting – yet these are many of the 21st century challenges that society continues to grapple with.

The social stigma of adult bed-wetting 

For example, the social stigma associated with the condition of bed-wetting among adults appears was recently challenged at a prominent church in Lagos, Nigeria. During a church sitting on 18 August 2019, a middle-aged woman from Canada who introduced herself as Jenette Njodzenyuy Yula shared her life experience of the shame she encountered bed-wetting as an adult and mother of two.

“My husband had to sleep in the other room and I couldn’t even visit friends because of the bed-wetting”, she reminisced. Yula explained how after ‘prayers’ from T.B. Joshua’s church in Lagos, Nigeria the previous Sunday, she slept for an entire week without bedwetting for the first time in her whole life.

“I slept and woke up with my bed dry!” she exclaimed. Her mother and daughter strangely suffered from the same condition and both equally joined the testimony to acknowledge “God set them free” from the embarrassing condition after visiting the church. Talking about her former issue candidly appeared to be a kind of catharsis for Yula.

Nocturnal enuresis, in other words adult bed-wetting, is a condition that millions continue to suffer with in silence. According to some research conducted, about 26 million American adults are affected by urinary incontinence and face social stigma associated to the condition.

Access to education & promoting diversity in elite universities

Access to education remains a widespread challenge across the world. However, reputable elite universities across the West, particularly in the US and the UK, face an additional challenge of promoting diversity – racial and class representation – within their walls.

The Universities of Oxford and Cambridge in the UK, colloquially referred to as Oxbridge, have in the past two years sought to attract the Black and Minority Ethnic communities of the UK to increase their abysmal statistics of Black and Minority Ethnic communities on their respective campuses. Lady Margaret Hall (LMH), at the University of Oxford inaugurated a foundation programme to attract a diverse student-base. Cambridge University has said that it intends to launch a programme to aid disadvantaged students with a similar programme as that at LMH.

T.B. Joshua’s church seems to arguably have innovative ways of inspiring students in this area. A black British teenage student, Miss Blessing Omorodion, shared on T.B. Joshua’s television channel how she was inspired by the cleric and his inspirational ‘faith-boosting prayers’ to apply to the University of Oxford to study Medicine.

Omorodion stated how her mother visited T.B. Joshua’s mega-church in Lagos propelled her to study hard and ultimately apply to the elite institution. According to Blessing, some months after her mother’s visit to The SCOAN, she gained admission and she thanked T.B. Joshua for the inspiration.

Another student, Rebecca Ayodeji Akeresola, stated how she had received the necessary impetus from T.B. Joshua’s church to apply to study Mathematics at the African Mathematical Sciences Institute in Rwanda. To her surprise she gained admission on a full scholarship.

The role of the church in addressing marital issues 

Another young adult woman (accompanied by her husband) candidly shared her life experience that one would ordinarily not associate with a church setting: issues of marital intimacy. During a detailed testimony, in a question and answer format, a young married woman, Mrs Ngozi Nwachukwu, stated how her marriage was saved from collapsing after she received what she called, “a word of prophecy” concerning a private issue she could not disclose to any person except her husband.

“Prophet T.B. Joshua prophesied to me in the midst of the crowd and said, ‘There is a woman there – your passage is blocked for affection… It’s a spiritual attack’,” Mrs Nwachukwu said. The young woman explained how her marriage was encountering challenges due to her private gynaecological condition that she could not disclose to anyone. With a husband who was losing patience, she had nowhere else to go, and so she made a way to an unlikely place for help – where she had seen others with varied issues go and find succour – a church in Lagos.

Mrs Nwachukwu explained (supported and reiterated by her husband) how after the ‘prayers’ conducted by T.B. Joshua the previous Sunday, both her marital relationship and her gynaecological-health challenge had been resolved; and she now enjoys marital bliss she never knew before the ‘prayers’.

Conclusion 

One may wonder what the role of the church is given all of these varied examples. T.B. Joshua’s Sunday services are unconventional, unorthodox and seem to shake the traditional church networks in his native Nigeria – yet they appear to directly address the societal concerns that people face. From teenagers to young adults; middle-aged men and women to older, senior citizens – all appear to collectively find solace in an unlikely place. Is the Nigerian cleric redefining and challenging the stereotypical and traditional notions of “church”?

T.B. Joshua has over 3.5 million followers on Facebook. His YouTube channel is reportedly the most watched Christian ministry (without a musical focus) on YouTube, with over 2 million subscribers across its English, French, Spanish and Portuguese YouTube channels. His English channel alone has amassed over 500 million views on YouTube.

Gareth Watson is a freelance South African journalist covering Sub Saharan Africa. 

Vanguard

 

WALK BY FAITH!

We cannot understand God by feelings. We can only understand Him by what the Word says about Him. God is everything the Word says He is, so we need to get familiar with Him through the Word. Too many people try to get acquainted with God through their feelings. When they feel good, they think God has heard their prayers. When they don’t feel particularly good – I mean, when they feel God is unkind or unfair to them, they begin to rebel or murmur against God. They feel that God no longer answers their prayer; their faith is thus based on feelings.

First they begin to change churches and finally choose to seek alternatives outside the church. Such is the fate of those who base their faith on feelings. Real faith is based upon the Word of God. Real faith says, “If God’s Word says it is true, it is”, while feelings say, “Unless I see, I cannot believe. Unless I touch, I cannot believe”. The Word of God says, ‘Blessed are you when you believe without seeing’. Believing God is believing His Word. If our faith is based upon feelings, we are just using natural human faith and we cannot get spiritual results with natural human faith. Anyone can believe what he can feel, hear or see. When it comes to spiritual things – we don’t walk by sight, we walk by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7).

– T.B. Joshua

 

HOW TO DEAL WITH YOUR ENEMIES – TB JOSHUA

tb joshua, scoan

Prophet T.B. Joshua

“Today, people look upon pain, wrong and injustice towards their neighbours unaffected. Your neighbour could be your enemy, friend, those who do not share the same faith with you. The Bible says love them all. But today – because they do not share the same faith with you, when you see them in a problem, you ignore them and look the other side. Because you are a Christian and they are not a Christian, whatever problem they have – you look the other side. No! You have to love your neighbour as yourself. If your conscience is alive to Christ, you would always be there for your neighbour. Love your neighbour as yourself.

The Bible says, ‘I will set a table before you in the presence of your enemies’. If your enemy is not there, the table will be useless. It’s good for your enemy to see what you become. What they thought you cannot become – it’s good for your enemy to see. They thought you cannot become this or that – it is better they see for themselves. That may change them and win their soul! A good example of what I am talking about is we here in the church today. If we begin to examine the conscience of everyone here and look at the past – at least 50% never thought they would come here. You had a different impression about T.B. Joshua. You stood in opposition towards T.B. Joshua in the past but today, you are alive to see that he is your friend, not your enemy. If you had died then, would you be able to see this? If I had died then, would I be here today?

What is the way out? Pray for your enemy! Prayer from your heart, not from your lips. If you choose the path of praying for your enemy, you will have a great relief. Because you are running to defeat your enemy, it has taken you to many places – spiritually, physically and financially. It has caused you sleepless nights – fear, anxiety, pressure. Every bad thing that happens to you -when you have nightmare – you attribute it to your enemy. The pain you are going through – it’s not your enemy that is going through it but you. Why can’t you ignore your enemy and move forward? Pray for them! You are the one going through the pain.

When you begin to chase your enemies, you will automatically forget the condition in which you are – because it’s not possible to look at two sides. I am going through pain that the enemy caused – and at the same time I am pursuing the enemy that caused it. I will ignore the pain. The pain will be there but how to take care of myself will be ignored. This is why our pain persists. The situation that you are supposed to go through within a week, you are on it for the past one year – because you ignore your condition and you are pursuing your enemies

The bigger your success, the bigger your enemies. Why are you wasting your time when you know it’s a normal life? You go through your trial according to your position and I will go through my trial according to my position. It is our position that attracts trials. Your position in life attracts persecution. If your position is big, it will attract big trials. Big blessing will attract big trials. You don’t want trials; you don’t want success in life. When people talk about you – ‘He is a foolish man; she is a foolish woman’ – you know it’s a recognition! What you are going through should not rule your life. What you are going through does not matter but what matters is whom you are.”

Remember, SHARING is CARING… 👍

​CLOSE THE DOOR OF WEAKNESS

tb joshua sermon
CLOSE THE DOOR OF WEAKNESS

You are what you are because of your weakness. It is an entrance to satan. Let us close that door. The Bible says that no one can keep every commandment but as we strive to, we grow. We grow everyday as we block our weaknesses.

Your character is God in you. If you don’t want satan to enslave you, work on your character. As from today, don’t say, “God, bless me”, “God, save me from the situation I am in” – pray against your weakness.

Go straight to pray against your weakness because satan uses our weakness to enter us. If you close that place, no more satan. Your situation is not your enemy; your weakness is your enemy. Whatever situation you are in is not your enemy because it makes you to see the need of God. Therefore, when weakness strikes, draw closer to God; don’t run from God because of weakness.

In our struggle against weakness, remember that we are not perfect but we can strive towards perfection because we have perfection by our side – Jesus Christ (Matthew 5:48).

TB Joshua Ministry

​IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH

tb Joshua sermon
IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH

John 4:24, “God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

According to the Scriptures, Jesus is the truth, the reality. There is no reality outside Him. Everything else is merely chasing shadows (Colossians 2:17).At some point in our lives, we hunger for meaning in our lives and thirst to find the truth. If you have not experienced the truth, there would be a sense of dissatisfaction in your life. If you have not encountered God, you do not know the truth – what life is all about and what happens when this life is over. Let us live in the truth. All the fruit of the Spirit are equal to truth (Ephesians 5:9). If you miss one, you miss all. If your relationship with God is not in spirit, it is not in truth and so it is all nothing because God is Spirit and those who worship Him must do so in Spirit and in truth. Freedom from sickness, disease, afflictions and pain come from knowing the truth. Stop fighting the truth because the truth never loses the battle. Only the truth can see you through the daily battle with the senses.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, may we know Your Truth and may the Truth set us free in reality, in Jesus’ name.

TB Joshua Ministry

​DEMAND THE IMPOSSIBLE

tb Joshua sermon
DEMAND THE IMPOSSIBLE

Trouble comes not always because we have taken any wrong step but because we live in a complex and contradictory world. When you cannot seem to get above your situation, it is in your best interest to get above your fears. Use your faith to put a demand. Faith does not ask for possible things, it demands the impossible. Faith is in one sense a divine gift and in another sense a human act. You have a part to play just as God has a part to play. It is not our mere wishful thinking that brings our ambition to pass but a rightful focus. It takes focused action, personal discipline and a lot of effort every day to make things happen. Avoid the trap of fear which increases the size of your enemy mentally. When you confess what you see, you are thus magnifying the problem above your Heavenly Father. If you doubt God’s Word, you doubt God because you believe in something contrary to that Word. God is greater than all. There is no need He cannot meet. Man’s condition does not change God’s position. God still is who He says He is; just give Him a chance to prove it.

Zechariah 8:6, “This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies says: All this may seem impossible to you now, a small remnant of God’s people. But is it impossible for me? says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”

​PASS YOUR TEST!

TB Joshua sermon

PASS YOUR TEST!

People of God, have your circumstances ever pressed you to doubt God’s promises? Have you ever been tempted to ask, “Does God hear me? Does God love me? If God loves me, why do I have all these challenges?”

The lives of believers in both the old and new testaments testify that being faithful to God does not eliminate adversity. That you are a Christian, a pastor, an evangelist does not mean you will not be exposed to things that are not consistent with God’s Word. There will be a time to laugh, a time to cry, a time for war and a time for peace, a time to face temptation and a time to overcome. What time are you in? It is necessary for your forward movement in Christ.

In Romans 5:3-5, the apostle tells us, “…we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance and perseverance, character and character, hope. now hope does not disappoint because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us”.

There can be no victory without a battle. There can be no harvest without planting. There can be no resurrection without a death. Remember, when times are stable and the sea is calm and secure, no one is really tested. Pass your test and move on, in Jesus’ name!

Prayer: Lord Jesus, grant me grace in accepting adversity and enduring every pain so that I may learn what I should know, my grief to turn to gain.

FURTHER BIBLE READING:
1 Peter 4:12-19

John 6:31-33

Psalm 27

TB Joshua Ministry