Prayers are broadly speaking, the soul of man’s true connection to God. They represent the focused dialogue between man and his God or, when rendered in a quiet manner, they are dedicated monologues in which man passionately seeks God’s love, touch, feeling and favour at any time he so wishes.
The idea of prayers has since become the only major way in which man discusses his interests, dreams and aspirations with his Maker, especially in moments of tribulations, trials, discomfort and helplessness. Moments of sorrow, disappointment, frustration, unease and confusion demand that man turns to the Creator for assistance, attention, support and help. Such expectation becomes intensified when solutions cannot be provided by other men, regardless of their positions in life. In any case, man can be a source of disappointment, betrayal and insensitivity and the required response may never come.
Prayers serve as solutions to human problems because the Creator is not unlistening, unconcerned and unmoved about our circumstances, individually and collectively. God is a symbol of love, understanding and wisdom; He attends to people’s needs but only according to His own wishes because He would not give what will eventually destroy the answer. In the words of the author (An Unknown Christian) of the book The Kneeling Christian, “prayer is the key which unlocks the door of God’s treasure-house…all real growth in the spiritual life – all victory over temptation, all confidence and peace in the presence of difficulties and dangers, all repose of spirit in times of great disappointment or loss, all habitual communion with God – depend upon the practice of secret prayer” and that “the greatest thing we can do for God or for man is to pray. For we can accomplish far more by our prayers than by our work. Prayer is omnipotent; it can do anything that God can do! When we pray, God works. All fruitfulness in service is the outcome of prayer – of the worker’s prayers, or of those who are holding up holy hands on his behalf”.
Prayers progressively signify total submission to God; they are the connecting threads between man and God and significantly symbolize purity of mind and spirit of confidence and courage in what God can do. At The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations (SCOAN), the mass prayer occupies a good place in the Sunday service. It often happens at the end of the service as a “purgative measure” since the congregants must have specific prayer points which draw them to God. When it happens, the service must be getting closed and people’s peculiar trials and tribulations must be addressed.
Most often, people are locked up in the dark bottles managed by evil forces and their experiences may be quite extensive – spiritual wives and husbands, joblessness, ancestral curses, overdue pregnancies, frustrated ambitions, bedwetting, nightmares, attacks on family members, etc. Evil forces have often manifested, so impiously, from different angles, reducing people to a mere shadow of themselves. Quite a high number of people had died from overdose of such problems, who were unfortunate to experience spiritual deliverance and breakthroughs. Wicked forces have often been released by the devil to destroy high dreams, pampered ambitions and noble pursuits.
The SCOAN’s mass prayers are often charged with much power. As specific prayer points are dished out by Prophet T.B. Joshua or the Wise Men, people energetically respond to the spiritual rhythms of action to move God into instant response. The prophet addresses the demon who is “using bad habits to connect you to himself” or those crude agents of darkness who have negatively influenced people’s occupations, careers, marital homes, health, businesses and destiny – such forces are ceaselessly attacked in such charged moments to give way to effective deliverance and freedom for the people.
The mass prayer is crafted to reduce to nought “every influence of satan” because “satan is powerless in the face of the sword”, to use Prophet Joshua’s words. The prayer is meant to achieve “salvation of our souls” and to disconnect people from gloomy forces of backwardness, stagnation and negative experiences. As people (those being disturbed by evil forces) drop on the floor in the heat of the earth-shaking prayers, they manifest the ‘spirits’ plaguing them and there have perpetually been such revealed problems as epilepsy, barrenness, immorality, drug addiction, drunkenness, body infections, lunacy, poverty, failure in business and life, curses, etc. Liberation is achieved by people as the Holy Spirit touches them in the ‘arena of liberty’; they are disconnected from inhibiting forces of retrogression and impotence.
One aspect of this situation is that people who fall on the ground start ‘revealing’ themselves as the spirits of destruction and death, speak the kind of upheavals and travails they have created in the lives of the victims. Through this, the congregants are spiritually purged of the spirits of crocodile, pythons, lust, lizard, marine powers and of ancestral idols. Also , some people are restlessly moving up and down the church, stating what evil powers have done in their lives. As the prayer goes on, they are released!
But not every person drops to the floor. Some still manifest while standing. The prophet and Wise Men move around the congregation, touching the people and delivering messages from on high. Most people have forgotten their past, their history and what events shaped their lives in the past. Mistakes were made in the past whose effects may just be revealed today. Even, performances of past ancestors which influence people’s lives today are exposed. People who experience a life of drugs, robbery, cultism, retrogression in work and marital homes, lunacy, joblessness, failure and destruction have been known to have ancestors who performed badly or wickedly in the past. Deliverance and healing are administered and people are freed from odious devourers, demonic powers and fruitless toiling. Breakthroughs are unquestionably obtained through favours, protection, success, abundance, prosperity and grace of the Most High. Sometimes, the enchanted congregants reveal stories of how they saw Prophet Joshua in the dream, working through for their liberation.
Equally important is that the mass prayer is often directed at “viewers from all over the world” (and this is achieved through Emmanuel TV). People are encouraged to touch their screens because “distance is not a barrier”. There had been thousands of testimonies of people who were delivered by obeying the ‘anointed’ voice by touching or pointing at the screen; they were liberated from drunkenness, suicide, drug addiction, cancer, impotence, ulcers, sickness, ritualism, infections (including HIV/AIDS), marital instability, poverty, nightmares, migraines, painful body parts, charcoal and sand eating, fear, etc.
The mass prayer in The SCOAN is an opportunity for mass deliverance and healing; it is a forum for remarkable experience of freedom from plagues of social inconsequence, sicknesses and moral recklessness. It supplies spiritual energy into people and encourages their spirit of confidence in what God can do for them. It provides foundation and a reason for their faith and strengthens their spiritual desires. Shortly after such a prayer, the congregants’ spirits become renewed and reinvigorated. Millions of people are always prepared to give testimonies on what the mass prayer has done for them, over the years.
Fajenyo and Patrick are authors and Fellows of the Social Engineering and Research Initiative (SERI)