Why Does Bishop Oyedepo Hate Muslims so Passionately?
With due respect to the Christians that may have the opportunity of reading this piece, I want to observe that some of the recent comments and utterances of this respected Christian clergy, Bishop David Oyedepo, makes me think of him as becoming senile.
This is one of very few Nigerians that God in His infinite mercy, has shown immeasurable favour in his calling. He has graduated from a mere pastor of a small congregation in his then Ungwar Rimi apartment in the late 80s to a Bishop of mega churches with thousands of faithful followers found across Nigeria and outside Nigeria. He has two fledgling Universities: Covenant in Otta, Ogun state and Landmark in Omun Aran in his home state of Kwara state. His ailing wife, Faith Oyedepo runs the secondary schools in the name of Faith Academy in some cities in the country. These institutions are not meant for ‘ Have nots’ but for those with deep pockets. By every standard of measurement, Bishop David Oyedepo is one of the richest Nigerians and among the richest Christian clergymen in the world. He has a fleet of private jets and his reasoning behind this primitive acquisition is that if ordinary sports men and thespians could have private jets through the sales of their God given talents, why not him, the ‘anointed’ man of God. There’s no doubt Bishop Oyedepo is a rich man, and he is also a man of affluence who enjoys the best life can offer. He therefore preaches prosperity, and the issue of the life hereafter takes the back seat as far as his followers are concerned. Little wonder, those in dire need of liberation from the shackles of poverty find his church as the right place to go and cry to their Creator. His church is therefore one of the most attractive to the downtrodden who believe in his preaching of prosperity and not salvation.
In the recent past however, this respected man of God has become something else. Instead of winning souls for Christ, he has chosen to use his church to preach hatred. He cashes on his cult figure among his followers to spread hatred among various religions especially Islam and Christianity and among certain ethnic groups particularly the Fulani and Hausa. His disdain for Islam is so brazenly displayed at any given opportunity. An instance was the controversy that trailed the death of his stepmother who died as a Muslim in Omun Aran recently. He refused the woman to be buried according to the tenets of Islam. In fact, he refused the Muslim clerics who wanted to bury the woman the access to the corpse. He claimed that the woman had long giving her life to Christ before her death. This was vehemently denied by the relations of the woman, but the bishop had his way.
The latest is that he was quoted to have said he would never give alms to any beggar begging for alms in the name of Allah. According to him, Allah is an Arabic word which he does not make any meaning to him. Anything Arabic is synonymous with Islam, and he would rather not associate with. Imagine someone who thrives on alms giving from his members in the name of Tithes. What does he do for a living anyway? Even the Universities, the private jets and his flamboyant lifestyle are products of excessive taxation of members in the name of tithes. He is therefore qualified to be called the CEO, In the Name of God Plc.
One has no problem with what individuals choose to believe in and we must recognize this as their right. We equally did not choose for our Creator which ethnic group we would want to belong as the time He created us. While I recognize Bishop Oyedepo’s of religion, and not castigating for his success stories, he should know that he should not preach hatred and promote confusion in a society he has immensely benefitted from. Bishop David Oyedepo should note that Nigerians are no fools. An average Nigerian loves peaceful coexistence regardless of religion and tribe wherever they find themselves. Why then should Oyedepo think he is the conscience of the Christians with his inflammatory pronouncements and so-called prophesies which are always negative? He could not even foresee COVID-19 pandemic that for many months kept his church under lock and key in all his so-called prophetic pronouncements. Neither did he use his much-taunted healing power to halt the ravaging pandemic even among his members.
It equally sad that a man of God that should always be seen to be seeking God’s intervention in our troubled nation has not been able conceal his opposition to the PMB, s administration. He could not even pretend which among the opposition parties he has sympathy for. Well, one cannot deny him his rights to freedom of association, but this is not what is expected of someone who has become a spiritual compass to some Nigerians. Sadly too, he has not been too discreet about this since his followers are expected to be members of different political parties. He should however take a cue from the immediate past CAN President, Pastor Ayo Oristasjofor and Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah. They have become lost voices among Nigerians. Whenever they choose to speak now, majority of Nigerians no longer show respect for their opinions. This is because they have not only convinced Nigerians that they are politicians in a Cassock, but often, they are so divisive in their actions and utterances. If Bishop David Oyedepo continues in this way, he will soon discover that he will be out of reckoning. He is in fact, becoming senile.