There was a feast of the Jews and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, (please read John chapter 5). The Pool of Bethesda was in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate (John 5:2), surrounded by five covered colonnades. The Sheep Gate was doubtless the gate through which the sheep travelled on their way to be sacrificed in the temple. During Jesus’ time, the Pool of Bethesda lay outside Jerusalem city walls. The name of the pool, “Bethesda,” is Aramaic. It means “House of Mercy”, “House of Grace”, or “House of Love”, and it is also a place where “a great number of disabled people used to lay; the blind, the lame, the paralyzed” (John 5:3). The Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) in Lagos Nigeria is called by many as “Arena of Liberty”, also having this same dual meaning, being regarded by some as a place where the infirm, the sick, the invalids, come seeking from Jesus. SCOAN is also a place of Grace where many receive healing, deliverance, the new life and freedom.
The word of the LORD came unto Elijah, the Tishbite from Gilead, that he should go and hide by the brook Cherith, (please read 1 Kings 17). God instructed Elijah this way to protect the prophet from the wrath of King Ahab. God also told him that he would drink of the brook and that ravens had been commanded to feed him there. Prophet Elijah went and did according to the word of the LORD. There at the brook, the ravens brought him bread and flesh in the morning, and bread and flesh in the evening and he drank of the brook. After a while, the brook dried up, because there had been no rain in the land according to the word of the prophet before King Ahab. Elijah had said unto King Ahab, “As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word”.
In (2 Corinthians 5:7) Apostle Paul encouraged the Corinthians that “We walk by FAITH, not by SIGHT.” The desire and plan of God for each of us is “how to disciple us to learn how to live by faith, not by sight”. God wants us to learn how to live in a loving relationship with Him, to recognize His voice and commune with Him, to discover His will for our lives, to make right decisions to follow His direction and to live out His perfect plan demonstrated to us in His only Son, Jesus Christ. Hence walking by faith is simply being where God is and doing what God is doing. It is necessary to learn how to walk by faith, not by sight, because, “whatever is not of faith is sin,” (Rom. 14:23), and also because, ”without faith, it is impossible to please God,” (Heb. 11:6).
The entire State of Israel is called “the Holy Land” probably because of many prophets that God raised from that Land, because of God’s Promise to Abraham through to David, to Jesus of Nazareth, or the tombs of many prophets adorning the State. We think the State of Israel should be called the Holy Land because of people walking in the footsteps of Jesus of Nazareth. Nevertheless, in June 2019, the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) met in Nazareth for an International Crusade that was led by its Bishop, Prophet TB Joshua. It is only men like Prophet TB Joshua that could have countered the different classes of opposition that erupted aiming to prevent the International Crusade from holding. It was a highly organized opposition that faced the crusade because of the person of TB Joshua, not just because he was coming from Nigeria or Africa. Openly they called Prophet TB Joshua, and the entire SCOAN team, many unprintable names. By now we had expected Christians or none Christians to have known Prophet TB Joshua or some of the numerous people working with SCOAN. The Nazareth event nevertheless unearthed the experience of our Lord and Saviour Jesus of Nazareth. We know that Jesus would have been provoked beyond measure before He spoke to those who were wrong, but thought that they were right, when He said to them, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! Because you build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous . . . Serpents, a brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell? Therefore, indeed, I send you prophets, wise men, and scribes: some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city, that on you may come all the righteous bloodshed on the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. . . (Matthew 23:29-37). On the contrary, Prophet TB Joshua was able to promote Jesus Christ of Nazareth, he promoted peace and love to the different peoples of the State of Israel and peoples of over 100 nationalities that went. It was glorious.
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We read in Genesis 41 about Joseph, one of the 12 sons of Jacob, sold by ten of his brothers at a slave price to Egypt. But in time Joseph survived the ordeals in the pit, in Potiphar’s house and in the prison to become a ruler in Egypt. In Genesis 41:41 Pharaoh said to Joseph, “You shall be in charge of my palace, and all my people are to submit to your orders. Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.” Joseph was now the Prime Minister in Egypt with enormous authority and powers. The famine period Joseph predicted had come and “When all Egypt began to feel the famine, the people cried to Pharaoh for food. Then Pharaoh told all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph and do what he tells you,” (Genesis 41:55). Similarly, when Jacob (Joseph’s father in Canaan) found out that grain was for sale in Egypt, he said to his sons, “Why do you keep looking at each other? I’ve heard there’s grain for sale in Egypt. Go there (to Joseph) and buy some for us so that we won’t starve to death”, (Genesis 42:1-3). Hence you come to Joseph. After all, you know that he will solve your hunger, go to Joseph and do whatever he tells you to do because you have faith in him.
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Our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms, (Ephesians 6:12). It is a continuous battle for every Christian, day and night, but the battle is rather with the perception of our circumstance and the material world. The circumstance shouldn’t be the focus, COVID-19 isn’t the focus. Apostle Paul says we need to be strong beyond ourselves. We’ll need God’s strength for the conflict. It means that as Christians we are soldiers at war just like a regular soldier in the battlefield.
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One of the cardinal ministries of Prophet TB Joshua, the founder of the Synagogue Church of All Nations, SCOAN, is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, and turning any man from being a hater of God into one who loves and obeys God. The things of God are foolishness to the natural man. Turning everyone into a new man who delights in God’s ways, who daily enjoy living and walking with God becomes a ministry. According to the Apostle Paul, there is only one answer to be able to do that. It is the “effectual working” of the power of God. “Whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power”, (Ephesians 3:7).
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Before Jesus fed the multitude, He commanded them first to sit down. This means He wanted their hearts to be right with Him. What is the state of your heart?
Many today fail to understand that we measure our lives not by our situation but by the movements of our hearts. The Bible says, a believer’s heart is the prayer room but for many, their heart is a room of fear, worry and panic. This is because when their finances are down, their faith is down, when their body is sick, their hope is sick. As a child of God, no matter what your situation looks like on the outside, if your heart is right with God, you can have peace. How can your heart be right with God?
With an attitude of repentance and faith we begin to think not of our sin and shortcoming but our righteousness in Christ. It was on the Cross of Calvary that Jesus made us right with God.Matthew 14:19 “And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people.”