By Banji Ojewale
Pastor William Folorunso Kumuyi, General Superintendent of Deeper Christian Life Ministry, isn’t a stranger in the club of men and women of weight and power in our society. Being himself a personality of position, presence and princedom, he is easily at home in the assembly of other lords, temporal or spiritual. But Kumuyi’s power is ecclesiastical, leaning on a lever outside him, outside man, outside this world.
So when he stormed Abeokuta, capital of Ogun, a state southwest of Nigeria, last week for the April edition of the Global Crusade series of his Deeper Life Bible Church, there was also a gathering of the galactic around him. In addition to the heavy presence of bishops, pastors, denomination founders, and Deeper Life State Overseers, the programme attracted top civil servants and politicians. The governor of Ogun State, Prince Dapo Abiodun, was there with the top brass of his cabinet. On the last day of the crusade, ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo showed up to complete the retinue of the high of the society who reported at the event.
For six nights, April 28-May 3, this ageless man of God (he turns 81, by the Grace of God, next month) paced the stage at a field preaching, teaching and reaching for the souls of men and women. He ran the event under the banner, Complete Dominion from Christ, by which he meant that comprehensive, classy and commanding conquest of the ills seeking to drown humanity is realizable only when we go for the celestial authority deposited in the Son of God, Jesus Christ.
Facing the high and the lowly, Kumuyi repeated what he has said for nearly 60 years: man, regardless of his socioeconomic and political standing, or of his huge technological feats, is clueless, hopeless and helpless without aligning with the salvation brought by Christ. His large audience was a motley of the plebeians and patricians who learnt that the Gospel message isn’t a perimetric one that shuts out a person and admits another on grounds of class distinctions. It’s meant for the hoi polloi and the noble. Both can’t on their own deliver themselves from the snare of sin, according to Kumuyi. The cleric said what all men need is the dominion Christ offers through faith in Him and in His promises. He describes that dominion as the authority to rule over yourself and say ‘no’ to unrighteous, criminal and inappropriate promptings.
If you continue to function without that dominion which can only be acquired from God, you risk being forever tethered to a disruptive, destructive, delusional and deadly antithetical power, namely the devil. There’s no middle ground. Man has repeatedly rejected the complete dominion path opened by God, leading him straight into the trap of the control of his enemy. As the cleric put it, man’s trajectory amounts to an ego trip. He broke down ‘ego’ as an acronym where E stands for ‘Edging’, ‘G’ is for God and ‘O’ is for ‘Out’. Ego thus reads, Edging God Out.
In Nigeria and Africa and across the nations of the world, there have been consequences of an apocalyptic nature following this ‘dethronement’ of God from the affairs of man. Things have not only fallen apart; they’ve also split into smithereens, with no shards seemingly available to be put together again for a new relationship with our Creator.
But on the final day of the crusade, Pastor Kumuyi mounted the stage with a message of hope, announcing that while man has closed the door to lead him into dominion through Christ, God hasn’t shut His. Making a fresh call for repentance, the cleric asked prodigal man to return to God through Jesus and start ‘’conquering with Christ for crowning dominion.’’ He warned however: ‘’It is not enough to start with Christ, we have to continue with Him to obtain complete and total breakthrough.’’
Complete dominion that would liberate Nigeria from its crippling hydra-headed monsters is also the desire of its secular leaders. Therefore, as host Governor Abiodun heard Kumuyi speak of a Power beyond that of government’s, he didn’t hesitate to seek for it. On the third night of the crusade, he acknowledged the integrity of the ministering leader of Deeper Life coupled with his uncompromising discipline as a holiness preacher. The governor urged Kumuyi to use his unquestionable sacerdotal offices to pray for Nigeria to return to normal days. With the election season knocking, he called for God’s intervention as he pleaded for massive participation in the poll in Ogun, especially by the youth, saying his administration has done quite a lot ‘’in providing an enabling environment for the people (of the state) to find employment as there is a relationship between unemployment and insecurity.’’
Nigeria’s former president, Obasanjo, was the other potentate at the crusade. It was to honour Pastor Kumuyi’s invitation to him when the former called on him at his residence in Abeokuta. Obasanjo’s pessimism about Nigeria‘s state of affairs, when he spoke, was dwarfed by his insistence that the country needs ‘’a man of integrity ‘’ like Kumuyi to teach us the way back to sanity and hope through his crusades. He said: “I believe because of men and women like that in Nigeria today, God will open His eyes and He will have mercy on this country…When you consider what is going on in Nigeria, West Africa and in the continent of Africa, and what is going on in the world, our city, our state…requires crusade(s) of this nature.’’
The two temporal potentates were not disappointed in their encounter with Kumuyi. They saw the man of God pray for souls to be reconciled to their Creator for a new life devoid of sin and ruinous anti-state conduct. Tens of thousands received his message, beamed nationally and globally via satellite, with excitement and renounced those defeatist old habits. Hearts thus cleansed become useful citizens for clan, community and country. In the long run, they constitute the blocks for the evolvement of a secure and peaceful society.
These weren’t the only yields of the Abeokuta crusade. There was a harvest of amazing miracles. Many had health burdens of several years that had outwitted orthodox and unorthodox medical practitioners taken away after Kumuyi prayed for complete dominion for them. A woman who was dead and had been brought back to life during an episode of the Global Crusade showed up at Abeokuta to proclaim the veracity of the extraordinary miracle.
Kumuyi himself told the crowd of the case of a woman who was delivered from a terminal breast cancer. He said: ‘’At the previous series of our ongoing Global Crusades at Bayelsa, this woman got healed of Breast Cancer. Her doctors had given her one month to die, her hands had been withered and her legs paralyzed. There’s nothing too big for our God to do.’’
The onus is on Nigerians and the whole humanity to believe in this God Pastor Kumuyi is referring to, this God unperturbed by the welter and weight of man’s troubles and aches, for enduring deliverance.