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‘Many of today’s Christians go to church only to have their needs met’

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The President of Christ Apostolic Church Mission, Pastor Adesoji Ajayi recently held an interactive session on the development in the ministry, where he shared his opinion on giving and the implication to the body of Christ. SEYI JOHN SALAU brings the excerpts:

Nigeria recently lost about 100 soldiers to Boko Haram in Metele; what is your take on this?

Go and ask America what they lost in Afghanistan. America lost more than 3,000 persons in the twin tower.  In any war, there are losers; the two parties will lose, there will be causalities. When you look at it, remember before Buhari Boko Haram was almost in Abuja, they have almost reached Ilorin. The people in Ogbomoso were running up and down. They were already threatening the northern part of Yoruba land. They were physically in Abuja. Before the advent of Buhari, they were bombing all over the place, churches, mosques etc. It has now been brought down drastically.

If you want to fight a three-year old boy, you have to be careful because he can bring you down. Boko Haram is a trained sect. They are militants. It is the issue of a man who wants to die now fighting a man who remembers he has family at home. Boko Haram fighters want to die, so fighting this man you have to be tactical. They looted the treasury. Obasanjo had about N20, 000 in his account before he became president, where did he get money to build a University and presidential library? I will only advise the APC government to work on stomach infrastructure. A lot of Nigerians are suffering and not that they caused it. It is not Buhari that did privatisation, it was Obasanjo that did all that and Atiku was the chairman, they decided who bought what.

If you say Nigerians are suffering; how do you want the government to address this?

I will advise the present government to look into the banks. All over the world, no country excepts Nigeria that charges double digit interest rate. In the UK the highest is 2 percent, ours is 26percent apart from other satanic charges and there is no period of moratorium. If you get N100million loan they start charging you immediately, they don’t care if you have started the business or if you can make profit.  I want the president to take a bill to the National Assembly on this, lobby them and let us see how they can legislate on it.

As we head to the polls for the 2019 general election, what do you see for Nigeria?

Before the coming of APC government, for days, you will forget about light, we used to spend 200-250 liters of diesel here weekly. Now we spend below 100 liters of diesel. I am not saying light issue is perfect but if you see a hungry man now being fed once or twice a day you will know there is a difference. We have light about 10 hours. Someone sent to school for 16 years that got nothing is now blaming someone who has only spent three and half in school for not performing, it is ridiculous. Atiku is loaded. He promised infrastructure, is he going to spend his personal money to fix it? How do you expect the judges and the lawyers to cooperate with Buhari? In the past, Buhari failed because he couldn’t give what Shagari was giving to do ‘rankadede’ for the leaders in the north. Buhari is good, but the terrain he found himself, the political terrain, he has failed to know. The axiom says a hungry man is an angry man. They have not addressed that.

Are you in a way saying this administration has done well with the resources available to it?

Fashola is addressing road, housing, power, divide the money being spent on that by two and give a portion to the people. What they are doing now is what they ought to have done in the past. They are now giving N10, 000 each to traders. If I were them, the billions they are spending to feed school children could be redirected because their parents have been feeding them in the past.

They could redirect that huge sum to establish people. I understand they have spent about N40billion so far on feeding. When you give N10, 000 to traders, what will they do with it? Give N50, 000 instead and let it cost you billions. A billion dollars now is N360billion, take five billion Naira from the reserve, it will satisfy the masses of the nation. Don’t wait for them, establish them, and empower them.

Why did you stop people from kneeling down for you?

I am not God. And I don’t like being deified. If you prostrate for me I see it as you are doing that because I am older but why should older people prostrate for me? It is extremely embarrassing. I hate being deified. And again I stopped the 10 percent. You are giving 10 percent to God; are you putting me in the position of God? There was this money they used to contribute, they would give it to me, the Lord said it is for the poor, give it to the poor and it is one thing to read the Bible, it is another thing to get the message and have the understanding. Being a Christian doesn’t make it automatic that you are a bonafide Christian. A lot of people go to churches to have their needs met but the main reason for going to church should be to worship God.

What does giving implies for a believer?

I have been giving since my teenage years. At the age of 18, 19, I started giving. I find it comfortable to give and giving is the best way to live as a Christian; even as a human being. I don’t restrain myself from giving, I thank God for that. When we were building this place I had an estate I was building, I abandoned it to concentrate on the church work. I am always directed by the Spirit of God. I have been shown my home in heaven, it is built with gold; this is to the glory of God. For those who have seen heaven, they know it is real. Nothing on earth compares to it. As I wanted to enter they drew me back and said go and work for it. The fact that you were shown doesn’t make it automatic.

Finally, have you ever had a cause to regret that act of giving?

I have never. I don’t like people coming to greet me to thank me for giving to them. I don’t give because I expect anything back. That is what is missing in the life of people. I don’t like being praised, how many times do we praise Christ for all he is doing for us?

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