Saturday, April 16, 2011

PASTORAL LETTER from the Archbishop of Jos

19 March 2011

Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

1 God be merciful to us and bless us, and cause His face to shine upon us,
That your way may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations.
3 Let the peoples praise You, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
4 Oh, let the nations be glad and sing for joy!
For you shall judge the people righteously, and govern the nations on earth.
5 Let the peoples praise You, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
6 Then the earth shall yield her increase; God, our own God, shall bless us.
7 God shall bless us, and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him. (Psalm 67)

We have a God who hears and answers prayers, the one true living God, the One who is, the One who was and the One who is to come; the God who created the heavens and the earth, who chose to work in history amongst different nations of the earth at different times. He chose to walk with Israel, and through Israel to reveal himself to the world. He has spoken; he has acted and he has written. The Holy Scriptures are full of the testimonies, the stories and the history of God in action. We in our time are witnesses. Glory, majesty, dominion and power be unto God for ever and ever. Amen.

1. Let me commend every Christian in our care for being faithful in participating with God in the history of Nigeria in the recent registration exercise. Let me further appeal in the name of God: do not sell your voter’s card; do not throw it away; do not misplace it; do not allow it to be stolen – because God wants to use your registration to vote , to act in history for our common good, for your blessing and for a better future for the coming generation.
In the week before elections pastors of all our churches will inspect and pray over all the voters’ cards of all members. You are free to choose any candidate of your conviction; you are free to exercise your God-given human right in voting and you are encouraged to protect and defend your vote. Unless there is an acceptable reason from God it shall be a sin not to vote.

2. We are confident in God that those who have plans to disrupt the elections, or to bring disruption before or after the transition period are not of God. We know this because no evil or wicked plan ever comes from God. There are those who want to whip up emotion and sentiment on their candidates using religion, geography, ethnicity and so on. Under God, we implore each faithful Christian to be in prayer now to the Lord, to seek God’s intervention for Nigeria, and to ask for grace and favour for our country. This appeal is an appeal of faith as we believe with our whole heart and are absolutely convinced that if the church agrees to pray, God has agreed to answer.

19 “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:19-20)

Therefore we urge you to pray the following:

i. Pray that God will elect sincere, God-fearing, honest candidates who will ensure security for all Nigerians, justice for all people, regardless of their religion, gender, ethnicity or nationality; people who will serve this nation and bring it out of darkness, poverty and corruption so that Nigeria is led to peace, prosperity and progress. Please earnestly ask God to give us such leaders. They may not even be people you know or like; they may not come from the same geographical area as yourself, but under a just INEC, with your votes, God will give us the best. Therefore pray also for INEC and for truth and justice to reign in the whole election process.

ii. Pray that God will change the hearts of any person or group of persons who gather together for the purpose of blood-letting, looting, arson and destruction of lives and property, and that God will surprise them with the conversion of their souls. If, however, they refuse and insist on their evil ways, then may God descend and destroy them. Let God arise and let all his enemies be scattered. Pray that all their evil intentions shall suffer a glamorous setback and the sponsors and executors will be demolished by the Spirit of the living God.

iii. Pray for a Biblical revival of the church, for the church to capture again the vision and the mission given to the apostles, that we may open our arms, our hearts , our homes and resources to receive converts into the Kingdom, and to win the world by the love of the Lord Jesus Christ in mission.

This pastoral letter is to be read in every home, every day, everywhere. Believers must meet and seek the face of God because the Day of the Lord is drawing nearer and we must not take the signs of the times for granted. We will give the testimony soon, and we will sing of the greatness of our God for ever and ever.

Jesus is LORD !!!

The Lord be with you,

+The Most Rev. Dr. B. A. Kwashi
Archbishop of Jos



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