Pastors reject new religious tenure law – the Sun Nigeria
By Henry Umahi
Following the appointment of a new national overseer for the redeemed Christian Church of God, in accordance with the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRCN) law, which specifically limited the tenure of general overseers of churches to 20 or 70 years, plus pastors oppose new tenure directive for church leaders.
Apostle Psalm Okpe, General Overseer, Fresh Oil Ministry, Lagos said, “If it is true that there is a law restricting the tenure of church leaders to 20 years, then this is one of the most childish laws I have ever seen since I was born. The reason is, what if the overseer general began his ministry at age 70? The call of God and the law of the land are not the same. The call of God is a personal experience and encounter.
He said that there is freedom of worship in Nigeria and therefore, “I think such a law should not even be heard as that is not the problem the country is facing right now. This is not the country’s challenge. We are in a state of emergency, so to speak. We are in a state where it is as if the whole system is collapsing and the government is asleep. I think the government should try to revive the country, instead of passing a law on church or Christianity, when it comes to the tenure of rulers.
Apostle Okpe said the government should not be playing God in deciding who “comes in and who leaves the ministry.” It is the call of God. If someone in the quality of Papa Adeboye resigns, as they claim, on the weight of his age, I can understand it. I join it because it needs this body to do the work of God. I do not want to admit that it is because of the law that he is proposing the new development. As I said at the outset, the law, if it exists, is the most childish law I have ever seen since I was born. It’s not supposed to be the government’s problem right now. God’s calling is not age-related, and His operations are not age-related or mandate-related. Thus, the government should not assume the position of God. I don’t think he will fly. It won’t work, as far as I’m concerned.
In addition, Pastor Henry Kpalukwu, general overseer, Glorious Fire Deliverance Ministry, Port Harcourt criticized the land law.
“The law is not good at all because it will affect a lot of people. In the days of the prophets, Elijah was a prophet of God until the day he left the world. Elisha was a prophet of God until the day he died. Moses led the children of Israel until the day he left the world. It was the same with Joshua and all the old prophets and apostles of Jesus Christ were in the ministry until God called them to glory. So why should such a law be made? As far as the work of God is concerned, it is not by human election. God’s call is made by divine election. For Pastor Adeboye to hand over, for example, it must be a decision of God. God must decide who succeeds him, not the government of Nigeria. God decides when He wants changes to be made, if necessary. It does not matter how many years a general overseer has been involved in the work of the ministry. It’s his business with God. Church leaders deal with God, not man. So whoever comes up with this kind of idea is trying to incur the wrath of God. “