Why I Don’t Have Church Branches Everywhere – T.B. Joshua

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Prophet T.B. Joshua

Nigerian Prophet T.B. Joshua has opened up on why his church does not have foreign branches despite his popularity abroad.

The cleric, who spoke on Sunday 24th August 2014 at The Synagogue, Church
Of All Nations (SCOAN), stressed on the need for God’s character to be fully established before ministerial expansion.

“I would have loved to have branches all over the world because people want T.B. Joshua everywhere,” he told the congregation. “But it is not yet time because it will be too much for my character. When the load is too heavy for you, it will become a burden.

”He further added that he was not movedby pleas from people but rather relied on God’s instruction. “Not where they want me but where God wants me,” he emphasised, adding that he was not in a haste or hurry and would not jump ahead of God’s timing.

“If you run before God, you cannot run after God,” he continued, explaining that this had been the bane of many businessmen and pastors as their desire to expand superseded their level of character.

His views stand in stark contrast to the popular notion that the amount of branches a church has is indicative of its level of success.

“In a situation where you become so great without God’s character, it means the end is going to be bad,” Joshua went on further to explain, reminding congregants of Jesus’ words in John 14:27 that the world too could provide wealth and fame although with conditions attached.

“When you see someone who is great without God’s character, don’t admire him – pray for him because the beginner is not the owner but the finisher… The beginning and middle are off-record; the end is what will put the record straight”.

The cleric stated that it was even better not to have fame and popularity than to achieve what would eventually end in calamity.

“Character is the one that carries whatever we become. If your wealth is bigger than your character, that wealth will be spending you, not you spending it.

”T.B. Joshua stated that one of the secrets of his ministerial success was not being driven by money, explaining that some worshippers were still under canopies in his church not because he lacked the financial capacity to expand but because he was waiting on God.

“There is money to build but money cannot dictate for me. We could expand this place (The SCOAN) and build the biggest church in the world but I allow the Source of money to tell me what to do, not the money itself.

”T.B. Joshua also bemoaned the way people complained about their problems as if they bore no responsibility for them, adding that their challenges were not a consequence of God leaving them but rather their choice to live contrary to His ways.

“God does not want you to suffer but you want to suffer,” he soberly stated. “God is always with you but you are not with Him.

”T.B. Joshua, who has been the center of several controversies especially within the fold of Nigerian Christendom, added that if not for his persecutors, he would have remained a street-preacher.

According to him, detractors motivated God to bestow more favour and mercy upon his ministry, adding that no billboard can be found advertising The SCOAN yet visitors flock from around the world

“If God has called you, the more they block your way, the more that trouble and temptation, the more God’s love is provoked… Each attempt to stop you asks for more evidence from God.

”The cleric concluded with some profound advice for Christians, calling on them to change their style of prayer. According to T.B. Joshua, prayers for blessing, healing and protection were redundant as God is fully aware of the challenges of His children and does not require reminding.

“You need to block the avenue satan is using to afflict you – your weaknesses,”T.B. Joshua counseled. “Your prayer should be against weaknesses.

”He further clarified that prayer alone was not enough, stating that genuine desire to desist from bad habits and weaknesses was also essential.

“Live the life of your prayer,” he told the congregation, citing an example that praying for God to help you stop smoking and then picking up a cigarette immediately was akin to hypocrisy. “God always leaves us to play our role before He comes to our rescue,” he concluded.

By Ihechukwu Njoku – A freelance Nigerian journalist

Probing the Strange Fire of TB Joshua

Before TB Joshua’s ministry was first introduced to me by a colleague, I rarely went to church because I was skeptical about religion. Being a South African living in Pretoria, I am one of those people that don’t believe in miracles, I had the perception that miracles where stage-managed by men of God to deceive their audiences and that clerics were using religion to exploit the people and accumulating wealth for themselves. It is a fact that pastors are amongst the richest in society today they enrich themselves by sweet-talked and make many believed they would receive prosperity by giving money to them.

When I became aware that the Prophet helped the poor and gave most of his church offerings to the less privileged without having a house of his own; I became astonished because I never believed that such a person existed in our world and this made me show keen interest in the Prophet and his ministry. Before then, I was used to watching DSTV channels, but after watching one of the SCOAN live services via emmanuel.tv online and some of the ministry videos on you tube; I was compelled to install the emmanuel.tv decoder in my house. What I saw on emmanuel.tv and YouTube aroused my curiosity and I was eager to visit the synagogue church of all nations (SCOAN) to experience what I was seeing on emmanuel.tv But then, I came across some negative information about the Prophet online and on further research, I came to realize that Prophet T.B. Joshua is one of the worlds most controversial man of God. I read through articles and debates that questioned the authenticity of his powers and the genuineness of those massive healings and deliverances that take place in his ministry. I really was not part of those debates because I too was a little bite skeptical about the man of God powers. But those incredible miracles I saw on youtube, emmanuel.tv and the controversy that surrounded the Prophet aroused my curiosity to visit SCOAN because I believed there must be more to such a man, whether he be real or fake.

Then I filled the visitors FAQ on the SCOAN website and was also told to contact SCOAN on phone about my mail for a visit. To my surprise, I was invited. It is important to note that I never went there because I was seeking solution to a desperate need, I love my job and my family is doing well.

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The Synagogue Church off All Nations

On my arrival to the church, I was astonished with the structures of the building and the beautiful arts work on it, the structure of the Church truly portrayed a Synagogue of God.

My first encounter was at the ministry prayer mountain. Visitors were usually taking to the SCOAN prayer mountain for prayers, we were told that the prayer mountain was the place the Prophet lived and started his first church. The place is a swampy area reconstructed to become a tourist haven. Seeing the place for the first time, it was amazing we were shown the hut the Man of God was living in the past, I was shocked when I saw it, because I felt a normal person could not live in such a deserted environment, this reminded me of the prophets of old in the bible that lived half of their lives in the forests and caves. Indeed God raised and nurtured His true Prophet away from the distractions of the society. Back at the Church we were shown some amazing videos of mighty healings and deliverances from occult and wicked demons, I discovered that not all the videos we were shown could be seen on YouTube or on Emmanuel.tv. I hope SCOAN starts showing all those videos soon.

Then, there was both Thursday, Saturday and Sunday services. On Thursdays was healing service where they arranged those with incurable diseases and sickness on the ministry prayer line. The visitors were taken to the church auditorium to witness how they were being prayed for by the wise men. It was great to see those in wheelchairs, those having spinal injuries and others receiving instant healing as the wise men laid their hands on them.

The Saturday and Sunday services was another great event, on the Saturday, the prophet went into the congregation to give words of prophecy to visitors and members all the prophecies where instantly confirmed by those persons and some were even surprised as to how the prophet was able to know their unrevealed secrets. On Sunday, other international visitors and I were arranged in the prayer line, all those with all sort of sickness where prayed for with instant healing, why some that were demon possess where delivered, you hear the demons speaking through them and later they were declared free. It was all joy and happiness as many received their healings and freedom. Then I realized that all that I was watching on Emmanuel.tv were indeed real.

After the Sunday experiences I was told by my visitors coordinator that the prophet would see me before I go back to my country. The day I met with the prophet, it was in the early hours of the morning, around 2:00 am. On getting to his office, the place was so simple; I expected to see a large office with beautiful furniture and all other luxurious decors befitting a man of his caliber but found none. When I met with the man of God the way he smiled at me and his simplicity really made me feel welcome. He gave me anointing water and other spiritual materials and then he prayed for me.

With this brief encounter with the man of God, I realized that God’s presence is real in our world and He is still ready to use anyone who makes himself available. And I realized that those who are found of speaking against the great work God is doing in SCOAN need to go there and see for themselves. You don’t need to be sick before you know that there is a God that can heal all diseases. The God in SCOAN is a true God and I hope critics will see the light that is in that place.