…When Kings bowed to the kings of kings
By Wale Akinola
Oba Adedapo Adewale Tejuoso, Karunwi 111, the Osile Oke-Ona Egba has, for the past 14 years, annually mobilised natural kings, among others, to worship God under the aegis of the Kings’ Day of Praise. Tejuoso, in this interview, narrates how a mystery letter led him to the initiative.
What is the Kings’ Day of Praise all about?
The Kings’ Day of Praise is a day set aside for kings to meet and worship God. It holds every second Thursday of October, that is, immediately after independence celebrations, just to thank God. We just had the 14th edition. We invited kings not only from across Nigeria, but also from neighbouring countries like Ghana and Republic of Benin.
Although we call it Kings’ Day of Praise, if you are a believer in Christ, and Christ has made you a king and a priest, you are welcome to the programme. If you look at Revelation Chapter 5:10 in the Bible, once you believe in Christ and accept Jesus Christ into your life, you are a king and a priest.
So, a natural king is invited, and all believers in Christ are also invited to join the gathering and worship God. God created us for just one purpose, to worship Him, praise Him and thank Him for all He has done in our lives and that’s the essence of life.
That’s what we will do when we get to heaven, and, by the grace of God, we will make it to heaven, we will do nothing there other than to worship God 24 hours of the day; we will join the 24 elders who put their crowns aside, worshiping God and saying ‘Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord’ 24 hours of the day. That’s the essence of Kings’ Day of Praise, and that’s what we will continue to do till eternity.
How did the inspiration come?
It is very interesting talking about how it started. I just received a letter in the palace, and the letter stated that God was looking for a king who will gather other kings together to praise God. It was a mystery letter because I didn’t know where it emanated from. I didn’t know the origin or source of the letter. That was 14 years ago. I can’t even remember how the letter was delivered to my palace but the funny thing is that soon after I started the programme, I couldn’t find the letter again.
But in the letter, it was stated that God will bless the king who complied with the directive by starting the Kings’ Day of Praise. Meanwhile, during one of my coronation anniversaries, while making my speech, Ebenezer Obey (musician) just walked in, and this was a man who had been doing praise altar programme with me and my spirit just told me, ‘Wait a minute, what am I delaying this Kings’ Day of Praise programme for since Obey is here, and the coordinator of Oba Karunwi Evangelical Movement, Prof. Adeyemo is also here, and our guest king for the programme, King Orukhare from Bayelsa State is also in attendance?’ I now publicly told the audience about the letter I received concerning the Kings’ Day of Praise and how God said He would bless whosoever starts the programme. That was in May 2004. I now told the audience that we should start the programme, adding that ‘if the programme fails, blame these people, not me and if it works, give the credit to them also, not me’. By October 2004, we held the first edition of the Kings; Day of Praise, and, since then, we have been holding the programme every year. I give all the praises and glory to God for the programme because it is only God that can sustain that kind of a programme for that long.
How does a typical Kings’ Day of Praise look like?
It is a day set aside for praising God 24 hours of the day. The day is devoted to thanking God for what He has been doing in our lives. The best approach to get to God’s heart or seek His face for favour is to praise Him. Psalm 100:4 says, ‘Enter into God’s gate with thanksgiving, enter His court with praise’.
That’s the key to get into the kingdom of God, and to request for whatever you want from God. Psalm 22:3 says that ‘God inhabits the praises of Israel, the praises of His people’. And God says if two or three persons are gathered in His presence, He would be among them. God doesn’t live inside the building of the church like we have it today. God said He would not live in any building made of hands, but would inhabit the congregation of His own people that He himself built with His hand.
That’s why God says where two or three people are gathered together, He would be in their midst. Once you can praise, God will always listen to you. King David told us that He usually prayed three times a day, but he was praising God seven times a day; no wonder He was so successful. Let me give you an example of how praises work like miracle. When you go to a function where a notable musician like Ebenezer Obey is playing, Ebenezer Obey would not pray to you to bring money.
What Obey will do is to start praising you until your head swells and you now put your hand in your pocket and you start spraying him currency notes. That’s the same thing with God. When you praise God, when you acknowledge His goodness in your life, doors of blessings will be opened for you.
Any plans to take the programme outside Abeokuta where it has held annually for 14 years?So far, we have been organizing it in Abeokuta. But our prayer is that it will soon become universal. God created man to worship and praise Him and thank Him. This is what is required of us; so why should we restrict the programme to Abeokuta? Our ultimatum goal is to make this programme a universal one.
What was the attendance like during this year’s edition of the programme?
Attendance has always been great. A number of traditional rulers from Nigeria and outside the country always attend. We thank God for His mercies – God has been wonderful to us. He has made the programme a monumental success.
The governor of Kaduna State, Ibrahim El-Rufai, sent representatives to this year’s programme. Was he invited specially to grace the event?
He was invited alongside other state governors. Usually we send invitation letters to all state governors, especially to encourage kings in their states to join the programme. El-Rufai sent some Christian traditional rulers from Southern Kaduna to the programme. He even sent money to us to support evangelism and God’s work. We appreciate El-Rufai for doing this. Coming from somebody like him, we really appreciate him. It is a sign of tolerance and it will help foster good relationship between Christians and Muslims.
It is like building bridges between Christians and Muslims. El-Rufai through his action has shown that he is a moderate Muslim. I enjoin other state governors to be liberal-minded like El-Rufai. We also appreciate Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun. He has been a pillar of support for the programme.