Full disclosure: I have been a member of the Living Faith Church Worldwide popularly known as Winners Chapel and headed by Bishop David Oyedepo since 1993. I count myself blessed to have been impacted by his messages and prayers, and I have no iota of doubt that he is a servant of the Most High who should be acknowledged and respected for his contributions in many spheres of life even beyond the Church.
Despite his accomplishments, one of my favorite quotes from his teachings is that the best of men under anointing is still a man. My understanding of this quote is that any Pastor or Man of God like they are called is still human and should not assume any higher level that makes him a supernatural being that cannot be faulted.
Even when some Church members and others want to ascribe to him infallibility status based on some controversial non-religious pronouncements he makes, I usually remind them of the above quote.
I don’t fail to tell them Bishop Oyedepo is human and can sometimes get things wrong and indeed there have been instances when he has moderated his positions on some issues
Unfortunately, not every “son and daughters of the Prophet” share my journalism mindset of viewing statements critically as long as it is from the Man of God who admits that everyone is entitled to his or her opinion about him.
He would rather ignore those who criticise him for the right or wrong reason instead of honouring them with a response. I have heard him recount about how some Church members and admirers are unnecessarily worried about what people say about him even when he is not bothered a bit.
His level of detachment from any negative comment about him or his ministry is such that he once said that if someone says you are stupid, you should take it as the person’s opinion which they are entitled to and should not be agitated or respond in a way to confirm what the person claims..
It is against the above background that I find difficult to understand the shocking reaction of Pastor Ibiyeomie of Salvation Ministries, Port Harcourt to unsavory comments of popular radio show host, Daddy Freeze about Bishop Oyedepo.
Its indeed condemnable that Daddy Freeze had made Pastors the subject of repeated attacks and mockery, but for Pastor Ibiyeomie to stand on the pulpit and utter the such hate words like bastards, in the viral video, he has gone too far in defending his father in the Lord.
If Bishop Oyedepo like Ibiyeomie acknowledged will not typically respond to Daddy Freeze, why should he take it upon himself to be the one to fight back in such an indefensible way a Pastor or anyone who claims to be a Bible-believing Christian should not.
What is the justification for his anger that he descended to the level threatening to deal with Daddy Freeze, claim Freeze was born by a Somalian as if Somalians are not human beings created by God who he serves, and dismiss his broadcasting profession?
What kind of anger in the name of defending an earthly father makes a Pastor to curse the day another human being was born and get his member to respond with a loud “Amen”?
Will our Lord Jesus Christ have responded to any attack on his person or God the Father the way Pastor Ibiyeomie did? Definitely No.
Pastor Ibiyeomie needs to ask God for forgiveness for desecrating the altar he stood on to exhibit the anger that is unbecoming of a Pastor.
He owes Bishop Oyedepo an apology for claiming to be acting on his behalf when the Chancellor of Covenant University would have preferred that critics like Daddy Freeze is best ignored.
He owes his congregation an apology for getting them to join him in the unnecessary show of anger and invoking a curse on Daddy Freeze.
What the Bible teaches us is that we can be angry but not commit sin. Pastors need be more of true men of God than the God of men.