There were very strong indications during the week that Lagosians are already anxiously expecting positive transformation of their moral, spiritual, economic and social lives, which they believe had considerably nosedived, at the forth-coming Lagos City-wide Crusade being organised by Deeper Christian Life Ministry (DCLM) in conjunction with the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).
Last week, at a newsstand along College Road, near Ifako General Hospital, Ogba, Lagos, a free newspaper reader could not help but decry the high rate of social vices in Lagos, noting that it would require divine intervention to stem the ugly tide.
Expressing similar sentiments, a resident disclosed that there are currently about four million ‘okada’ riders in Lagos State, who are mostly unsaved and are available to be recruited into dangerous gangs, a situation that should be a concern to everybody in the state, especially with the current rise in crime rate.
With a population estimated to hit 25 million by 2025, an analyst pointedly said Lagosians more than before needed a definite encounter with Christ, if the state would remain conducive for its inhabitants, stressing that acceptance of Christ would checkmate both the moral and social vices in the state.
Pastor Joseph Fasanmi, moderator, Deeper Christian Life Ministry (DCLM) Lagos State, who recently announced the planned city-wide crusade of the church, shared the analyst’s sentiment that only God could redeem the situation through Christ.
Fasanmi, while describing the planned crusade, which would cover 17 local government areas of the state, as unprecedented, noted that the high rate of robbery, cultism, drug abuse and corruption, among other ills, could have totally destroyed the state, if it were not for God’s grace.
The cleric, who gave the theme of the crusade as ‘Supernatural encounter with the God of wonders,’ admitted that the 20-day event, which would begin on September 8, was necessitated not only by the alarming rate of crime, but also the need to usher people into the kingdom of God.
Acknowledging Lagos State Government’s significant efforts to tackle robbery, cultism, drug menace, prostitution and kidnapping, among other crimes, Fasanmi said: “A fearsome swarm of iniquities is yet rife in the state. Ours is a state that has been held under siege for too long. If not for God’s abiding grace, our city, nay the state, could have gone under altogether.
“While we salute the positive actions so far taken by our respected Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode, we hasten to state that unless the required spiritual renaissance and moral re-armament are put in place, enduring change in Lagos, or any other place for that matter, will remain a pipe dream.”
According to him, unless the heart of man is changed and turned around by God to undertake salutary and positive designs, government’s measure would ultimately be feeble and less impactful.
Fasanmi explained that since the advent of democracy in 1999, respective governments in Lagos had striven to improve the socio-political economic space, but their collective actions could not sufficiently lift the state because of the people’s attitudinal dispositions, moral and spiritual make-up, which had been far from what they should be.
He said: “The leaders, themselves, are outcrops of a depressed environment, and cannot be expected to provide enduring solutions to the multifaceted challenges facing mankind and summed up in one word – sin.
“We make bold to state that it is only a completely changed heart of man by God through the gospel that can bring about a fundamental and unadulterated transformation in our broad landscape. All those that have conquered the basic challenges of development have done so because at one time or the other in their chequered history, they had embraced the commanding imperatives of the gospel.
“These crusades will, therefore, serve to expose and deal with the acute unrighteousness with the objective of receiving God’s forgiveness and mercy. The crusades will also prayerfully bring down the power of God with a view to ameliorating the rather punishing challenges many daily contend with.”
According to him, “It is equally in the bid to boldly complement the efforts of the state government and the cravings and yearnings of Gov. Ambode that these crusades will be taking place. Our firm conviction is that once the hearts of the general citizenry are made right, it will be easier for the government to prosecute its programmes fairly successfully.
“This explains why all Christians in Lagos are pulling their ranks together, at this time, to squarely defeat those primordial and anti-social factors which have held us down for so long. Our conviction is that as we pray and hold the crusades, real and enduring change will come. We have the firm assurance that Lagos will soon experience an atmosphere of calmness, true freedom and liberty as God confirms His word with signs and wonders.
“We trust God that the crusades will usher in an era of real spiritual, moral, physical, material, political and economic transformation for the state and by extension for the country, especially as Lagos represents the heart-beat of the nation.”
Fasanmi further added that, “We humbly and respectfully state that the crusades will be transparent and manifest for your scrutiny as we remain confident that nothing but the pursuit of God’s glory through the gospel is our cardinal objective. Ultimately, our Lord Jesus Christ will be sufficiently exalted so that He in turn will draw all longing hearts in Lagos and beyond to Himself.”
Chairman of Lagos PFN, Bishop Sola Ore, who was represented by the Financial Secretary of the association, Pastor Leke Akinola, at the press conference, pointed out that what the country needed to preach on the anti-corruption fight was “spiritual revolution”, which involved helping people realise the futility of illicit wealth acquisition.
Even though the entire Christian body is in support of the Federal Government’s war against corruption, Akinola said the preaching on the urgent need for “spiritual revolution” would change the nation’s orientation towards engaging in corrupt practices.
Nicholas Okoroh, chief executive officer of Perfect Strategies Limited, who described the crusade as the re-making of Lagos so that the true glory of Lagos might manifest, stated: “Though Lagos bears the identity, ‘the centre of excellence,’ the state today is where diverse crimes are committed on second per second.
“I see a new Lagos with a highly volatile supernatural invasion triggered by the coming forth of this God-approved minister, Pastor William F. Kumuyi, who will sweep Lagos clean,” he stressed.
The crusade, according to the organizers, is in the series of power-packed ministrations of Pastor Kumuyi which has taken him to many states, geo-political zones of the country and outside the shores of Nigeria in the recent times.