388 views | David Ayo Akerele | April 6, 2021
A pandemic of apathy and ignorance has hit the world. Interestingly, apathy is not the same as ignorance, though, both are connected. A question-and-answer time was facilitated in a seminar by Dr David Jeremiah, a foremost American bible teacher. In this seminar, he asked one of the participants, “What is the difference between apathy and ignorance”? Someone replied, “I don’t know, and I don’t care”. Sadly, this is the mindset of so many believers around the world? We have become so accustomed to the deluge of troubles and crises rocking our world that we seem to be less concerned about the strategic impacts of the myriads of troubles steering us on the face. From the barrage of political upheavals in the Middle East, to the global cases of Covid-19 pandemic, and then to the racial tensions that were triggered by the brutal and senseless killing of “George Floyd” in the United States, our world does not seem to have had enough. For some of us that are Christians, we seem to be whispering an unspoken sentiment— “I wish I am not part of this, or maybe I could find solace somewhere where myself and family would never be part of this global mess”.
Well Spoken. But, in 1940, the Germans, through their Nazis battalion invaded London in the UK and were pounding the beautiful and picturesque city with bombs. Everyone was scampering for safety. Quickly, the government, through their emergency systems requested everyone to relocate to the bomb shelters. A little girl and her dad were caught in the crossfire, scampering into the nearest bomb shelter, to avoid being shredded by the Nazi’s bombs. The young girl, in total exasperation clung to her dad, “Daddy, can we please go somewhere where there is no sky”. What a paradox! As I reflect on the vicissitude of life; the unpredictability of economies; the rising racial tensions; the continued spread of Covid-19 and other global developments, I am only left with an option—”To filter these events through the lenses of scriptures”. From a scriptural perspective, current global events have only sparked further interests in the subjects of “eternity” and “end time”, two highly connected, but distinct spiritual entities. Given the reality of eternity and the certainty of the fulfilment of biblical prophecies, current global events are signposts to the need for all Jesus followers to develop a more stringent sense of urgency—urgency in terms of the certainty of Jesus’s coming; the certainty of the fulfilment of outstanding end time prophecies; the certainty of eternity; and above all, the certainty of judgement.
Few years ago, Dr Tim Lahaye developed this sense of urgency and wrote the popular book, “Left Behind”, which became a series and a best seller that sold more than 30 million copies across the globe. He was motivated to write this book by an experience he had in a plane. He was flying across two US cities and right in the middle of the flight, he saw the pilot of the plane flirting with one of the hostesses. He said to himself, “what if the rapture happens now”? He disembarked from that plane with such an urgency to warn men of the imminent return of Christ, through the publication of the “Left Behind Series” book. Although, Dr Lahaye passed on in 2016, leaving an indelible legacy of cutting-edge insight into the events of the end time, the urgency and fervor in his message have not diminished. Contrary to expectation, his messages have continued to rivet through history, leaving a track record of imminence and urgency in the way we understand, interpret, and relate to world’s events.
Peradventure, you are reading this article and have become apathetic or even ignorant of the times and seasons we now live in? You feel like the Christians have become confused, and have remained unrealistic about events they really cannot determine the specific times and seasons of their manifestations? I will borrow you wisdom from the words of St Augustine, who once said, “the last days are hidden so that every day may be regarded”. God in his wisdom understands the nature of man and has carefully buried signals in scriptures—if you want to have a sense of timing, you must have a sense of scriptures—you must bury yourself inside the depth of scriptures to understand God’s handwritings that are as clear as a blue sky after a heavy rain.
Apathy and ignorance have continued to play destructive roles in the lives of millions of Christians to the extent that many among us now have a delayed sense of urgency. We still think that there is still plenty of time. To us, current world’s events do not really have any serious implications on the smooth running of life. This brings me to a fictional story of a conversation between Satan and his demons. William Barclay penned this fiction as follows: “Three of Satan’s demons were coming to the earth to complete their assignments. They were talking to Satan about their plans. The first said, “I will go and tell them that there is no God. Satan replied, “that won’t deceive anybody. They know that there is a God. The second demon said, “I will tell them there is no hell”. Satan replied, “they know deep down in their hearts that there is a place called hell”. The third demon said, “I know what to do. I will tell them that there is still plenty of time”. Satan smiled; you will ruin men by their thousands for the most dangerous of all deceptions is to tell men that there is still plenty of time”. What can be more accurate than this? Today, I write to encourage you that there is a strong need to avoid apathy and demote ignorance. We are living at a critical time and season in history.
Every single upheaval—economic crises, technological advancement, racial tension, wars, and rumors of wars are converging to one single direction—Eternity is real; the end time is real; Jesus is real; Heaven is real; and Hell is real. What then should be our attitude? To stand in our master’s presence in deep conversations in prayers and in the word. To build up our spiritual capacity so that we would be positioned to connect with the secrets of God—together with secrets of nations, of families and of individuals. It is by being positioned correctly in the realm of the spirit that we would be able to develop the capacity to hear God accurately and make more spiritual sense of contemporary events.
Dr C.E French told the story of a 98-year-old woman by the name, Sister Mary who was a faithful intercessor in America in the 1960s. The US government was to sign a strategic bilateral deal with Turkey and another Middle Eastern country. This was a top secret. The delegates had arrived. A night before the meeting in the White House, the Lord showed the exact details of the deal to Sister Mary in a night vision. She woke up and sent a message to the white house secretary that, should the US president sign that deal, America was going to enter trouble. The same evening, FBI agents stormed sister Mary’s house, “how did you know about the deal the US president was to sign with Turkey”? You are an agent for the Turkish government. After subjecting her to hours of grueling interrogation, they discovered that her information emanated from God. It was a spiritual transaction. The US government changed their mind and bowed to the warnings of sister Mary, a decision that saved the United States a major setback. That is the product of deep intimacy with God, which is all that we need to overcome apathy and ignorance. Whatever has happened in our world is still a shadow of worse things to come. The body of Christ must collaborate to build capacity—spiritual capacities that will help us win the battle against apathy and ignorance in the body and get us equipped with sound revelations and deep insight about every socio-economic and political changes and events in our world. By the way, if you prefer the option of isolating yourself from all of these, thinking that if more money hits your bank account, you will be secured in the comfort of your empire, I will respectfully disagree with you with the story of one man called, Friedrich Flick.
Told by Dr David Jeremiah, “Friedrich Flick used slave labor supplied from Hitler’s concentration camps to build his business and as the business grew, he channeled the funds back to Hitler’s nefarious and sinister political agenda. Friedrich Flick was a major contributor to the death of millions of Jews and others that died in the second world war. Friedrich Flick was so rich that he pioneered and built more than three hundred German companies, with business interests scattered across sectors like iron ore, aviation, coal mines, foundries, steel mills, chemical plants, trucks, and rails, among others. Friedrich Flick was so self-centered and proud. History has it that he never listened to his wife’s advice or the advice of any of his family members. His level of apathy, ignorance, cruelty, and self-centeredness was so legendary that, when in 1966, his wife died; he buried her at 3pm and was back at his desk at 5pm. Like other greedy, wicked, proud, and self-centered leaders in history, Friedrich Flick died in 1972, leaving a $2billion fortune behind, which later found its way into other people’s hands, while some crumbled and went down the drain totally”.
Great earthly empires do not always convert to great heavenly treasures. A man’s value is not determined by his valuables. Rick Warren once said, “self-worth isn’t the same as net-worth”. Jesus said, ” a man’s life doesn’t consist of the abundance of things he possesses” (Luke 12:15). There are two sicknesses worse than Covid-19. They remain apathy and ignorance. You will not understand the implications of current world’s events if you are suffering from these two horrible sicknesses. You cannot be quarantined for these sicknesses. The only things that will provide a sustainable cure are deep intimacy with God through the study of scriptures with a teachable heart and sustained life of prayers and intercessions. When we honestly and truthfully commit to God’s word and deep intercession, we will shake off the tyranny and grip of apathy and ignorance and develop eyes that see very clearly; ears that hear very clearly; and hearts that can perceive very accurately.
I will end this article with a story. The late Charles Colson began his life as a reckless ally of President Richard Nixon of the United States, hobnobbing with him in corruption and other shady deals, until God allowed him to be jailed by the United States government, an experience that paved the way for his transformation. It was in the prison he encountered C.S Lewis famous book, “Mere Christianity”, and it was this book that changed his life, cured him of ignorance, making him to later become one of the most effective Christian leaders, author, and evangelist in the American church before he passed on in 2012. Friends, no political alliance is worth trading for your eternity. No business relationship is worth trading for the rapture. No worldly pleasure is worth trading for your relationship with God. The day is fast spent; the clock is ticking extremely fast. Let us lay hold on God as passionately as possible, shine our spiritual eyes and stand on our toes, for our redemption is fast approaching.
Ayo Akerele holds a doctorate degree in employee turnover, human capital development and organizational tacit knowledge from the prestigious Edinburgh Business School and has worked extensively for more than twenty years as a consultant for multinational corporations in Africa, Europe, and North America before answering the call to ministry. Pastor Ayo as he is fondly called is a passionate & foremost teacher of the word by the grace of God with prolific insight into scriptures. He is a public speaker, an intercessor, a leadership expert, and a national transformation proponent with immense impact on the body of Christ worldwide.
His itinerant prayer, teaching and speaking ministry under different Christian organisations has lasted for many years since he met the lord as a young boy in the early 1980s. With a contagious passion for knowledge and truth in the word of God, his deepest desire is to see the body of Christ take her proper position in God through the teaching of the undiluted word of God; the demonstration of valid and authentic signs and wonders; the dissemination of kingdom values within and outside of the four walls of churches and the raising of sound disciples of Christ across the nations of the world. He is the author of twelve books; the founder of the Rhema For Living Assembly ministry in Toronto, Canada, and the host of Rhema Hour on 32fm—a radio ministry to a network of five million people in South West Nigeria. He is also an entrepreneur, as well as a leadership and national transformation consultant. Ayo Akerele is married to Omolara and they are blessed with three great sons, Enoch, John, and Daniel.
Dr David Ayo Akerele
Director, Flock Keepers International (a leadership & value system development organization)
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