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THE POVERTY OF COURAGE

THE POVERTY OF COURAGE

The NATIONAL PRAYER ALTAR

MARATHON PRAYERS
Monday 1st - Sunday 7th July 2024

THE POVERTY OF COURAGE

And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him, and were sore afraid. (1 Sam. 17: 24).

Last week, during the nightly intercessory prayers for Nigeria at the National Altar, a distinguished professor, while leading prayers, lamented what she called the “poverty of courage” in the land. Evil, corruption, unrighteousness, injustice, and perversion have pervaded the land because “men” are no longer standing as “men”.

In every culture, it is the responsibility of men to ensure that things do not go wrong. It is men that stand to defend their land and their families. It is the responsibility of men to ensure that foreigners do not invade their land and hold them captive. It is the responsibility of men to ensure there is food for their families and there is justice in their society. Men stand at critical periods to defend the values and virtues of their society. Even in the face of death, men will stand. That is the reason for the saying that “a man must do what a man must do”.

The generation in which the men are not willing to fight ends up in captivity. Their wives are ravished and dehumanized while their children end up as slaves. If men fail to do what men ought to do, the society suffers, and predators will take over.

A few years ago, at the height of Buhari’s misadventure in power, an article entitled “WHERE ARE THE MEN?” was published.  It remains a research topic for sociologists and anthropologists what happened to Nigerian men that such an entity was permitted to remain in power for eight years. The question, “Where are the men,” remains germane today as it was under Buhari. The insensitivity and profligacy of government should incense any man of noble birth. Governance in Nigeria is not difficult. The problem is the corruption and recklessness of the political class; the brazen recklessness right in the face, saying, “What can you do about it?”

Two politicians were so impudent they dared Nigerians to do their worst. Former Governor of Jigawa state, Sule Lamido, said in a widely circulated report that “Nigerians are too poor to revolt.”. He went further to say, “They don’t have the capacity to unite because they are burdened by poverty. We have taken away from them, their dignity, their self-esteem, their pride and self-worth, so that they cannot even organize.” That was coming from a supposed compatriot, unless he was being sarcastic of his own class.

A former state governor, Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, said, “we steal because no one stones us”. He too went further to say, “If you see a thief and you allow him to be stealing, what have you done? You have stoned nobody; that is why we are stealing. Who have you stoned? They came out and started dancing, oil subsidy, oil subsidy. They told you that they stole N2.3trn, what did you do?”

Other politicians do not talk because they are busy eating, and it is bad manners to talk while you are eating. They are eating the future, the comfort, and the well-being of their fellow citizens. Nigeria is one of the wealthiest countries in the world by virtue of its abundant natural resources. Unfortunately, its people are officially the poorest, having become the poverty capital of the world. The problem of the country is not poverty of wealth, it is poverty of courage. Rather than stand and defend justice and truth, the men would rather grumble and adjust to the pain.

This poverty of courage is more keenly felt inside the Church. A few years ago, some reckless and ungodly entities took control of the apex body of Christianity in Nigeria. They were brazenly corrupt and reckless. The National Christian Elders Forum challenged them, but the Elders were not supported by many of the Christians who felt that they were causing disunity in the body of Christ. In effect, if you see something, say nothing! One individual summoned courage to attend the meeting of the highest organ in the Church and petitioned against corruption in the leadership. He demanded immediate action. Rather than consider issues based on truth and righteousness, he was condemned by some Christians and vilified for exposing evil. It is the same people complaining today of suffering in the land. If evil is permitted to thrive within the Church, what would happen to the world?

At present, scandal upon scandal rocks the leadership of many Christian assemblies. What has the Christian community done? If Christians, who are the light of the world, cannot confront the works of darkness in the Church, who is going to help Nigeria? If there is one group that most suffers the poverty of courage in Nigeria, it is the Christian community. Some Christians hide cowardice under a veil of prayers. There is time to pray, and there is time to act. The word of God says that “faith without works is dead.” The Nigeria Church is rich in faith but poor in works. There must be a balance.

Christians in Nigeria must not be like Israelites in the valley of Elah. According to 1 Sam. 17: 24, when “all the men” saw one man, “all the men” fled, until a boy arrived on the scene. From human perspective, there were many men, and one boy who had been sent to deliver bread to his older siblings at the battlefront. However, from the perspective of Heaven, there was only one man on that battlefield - David. All the others were boys. It takes men to fight battles. It takes men to confront issues. It is men that stand against evil and defend the truth. A man does what a man must do. Where are the men in Nigeria? Are there no men in the land?

God forbid that the men meant to stand in this season for the land have joined the “Japa Syndrome”. As the condition in the country worsens, many people are fleeing to foreign countries. It is like a man whose father’s house is on fire and he promptly salvages a few of his properties and moves to his Neighbour’s house. Whom is he expecting to put out the fire in his father’s house? If all Nigerian men had purposed to confront the issues in the country, the situation would not have got this bad, and there would have been no reason for anyone to bail out.

Some observers believe that Nigerians are under a spell. The example was cited of a former Head of State who imported sorcerers into the country to place the people under a spell. One of the reported acts of the sorcerers was to obtain 1,000 mice, and in Abuja, put out the eyes of the mice, and tie their snout with threads before burying them. The purpose was that Nigerians would neither see nor say anything so long as that individual was in power. There was another report that some sorcerers were put on a plane and flown over the country, making incantations against Nigerians. Still, another report was received of a group of fishermen in a riverine community who saw a helicopter hover over the water and drop some bundles into the sea. After the helicopter had departed, the fishermen found the dropped parcels to be the religious books of a people who have since aimed to dip their book in the sea.

In view of the foregoing, one may not really blame Nigerian men for the display of nationwide timidity. Maybe it is the spell and the enchantment working in the land. If that is the case, the solution is still the Church. There must a be mobilization for prayers to counter the hypnosis, docility, and disunity in the land. However, the first requirement for the Church is righteousness. To wage this warfare, the Church must return to righteousness. It is written, “the righteous are bold as a lion.” If there is poverty of courage in the land, it implies that righteous men are few in the Church. If the men are righteous, they will be bold.

PRAYER POINTS

1).    Prov. 28:1 
Pray for the spirit of boldness to descend upon Christian men to defend truth and righteousness in the country.

2).    2 Tim. 1:7 
Plead the Blood of Jesus to nullify the effect of sorcery upon Nigerians in the face of oppression.

3).    2 Cor. 10:3 - 5 
Come against every blood sacrifice and satanic ritual employed by wicked rulers to gain and remain in power in Nigeria. Decree that all such evil powers shall be neutralized in the name of Jesus Christ.

4).    Ex. 22: 18 
Pronounce judgment on all satanic priests and priestesses that service satanic altars in Nigeria.

5).    Matthew 16: 19 
Bind and dispell the demons empowering wicked and corrupt rulers in the country.

6).    Isaiah 27: 1 
Call upon the sore, great, and mighty sword of God against the spirit of leviathan and all its forces in Nigeria. Set Nigeria free from the influence of leviathan.

7).    Isaiah 59:15–19 
Pray that the righteousness of Christ shall deliver Nigeria and execute judgment on all the enemies of truth and righteousness in the land.

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The House of Karis is a Christian publishing house focused on providing pure and truthful information that shall enable Christians live in righteousness and in the fear of God.

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