There is no summer, winter, autumn and spring in Nigeria: only a dry season and a rainy season. The climate is more or less constant throughout the year. August was part of the rainy season. It rained so much that some roads turned into rivers. There is no drainage and sewage pipes in Benin City so the water just gathers momentum until it becomes impassable. In order to get to a destination you have to take other routes through back roads.
On Sunday morning, very early, Bishop Mon Igbinosa fetched me with his 4X4 to take me to Ekpoma. That is where he lives and pastors the church he founded 12 years ago. He was a drug dealer before he was saved. After his conversion he lived in Bishop Benson Idahosa’s home for a year. Benson Idahosa was probably the most influential Pentecostal preacher of his time. African pastors believe in taking people into their homes to train them firsthand. They have a large acreage of land on which they built a 3000-seater auditorium and a home with 11 bedrooms in order to accommodate several people.
I preached about John chapter 9, one of the first chapters in the bible that opened up to me as far as third dimensional living is concerned. I spoke about 6 results that confirmed Jesus as the Light of the World.
The problem of a dualistic mind set in the disciples was exposed
The divine potential in the problem was revealed
The power of God was released due to obedience
The proof of signs and wonders was given
The persecution that opposes the truth was experienced
The life style of faith was introduced to the one who received the miracle
Psalm 146:8 says, The Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
In his office Bishop Mon has picture of Benson Idahosa with an old man who presented him to S. J. Elton, a missionary from England, who in turn introduced him to Gordon Lindsay from Christ for the Nations institute in Dallas, Texas. Lindsay opened the doors for Idahosa to all the International Ministers who began to support his work in Nigeria financially and helped him reach 120 nations in his short life time. He died in his 50’s after building many churches, a university and a whole township around the church. He was the first Nigerian preacher to do such things. Today it is common that there are preachers in Nigeria with churches of over 100 000 members each.
I spoke to Benson Idahosa on the phone when we were still in Australia in 1985 but never had the privilege to meet him before he passed away.
When I finished preaching, Bishop Mon addressed the congregation, ‘I have never seen these things in John 9 before! Have you? I think we must get Apostle Andre to come and teach us for a whole week. He must come and go, come and go to Nigeria!’ They agreed.
A few years ago Bishop Mon chaired one of Reinhard Bonke’s evangelistic crusades in their region. He told what the budget was and how one man paid for it all. It sounds unbelievable!
The great crowd at an evangelistic crusade makes it very impressive; whereas apostolic work often goes unnoticed because of its foundational nature. I often find myself preaching in the rural areas to relatively small crowds, but the reformation is happening in the mind-sets of those who hear the message. We need both evangelistic and apostolic work to continue in order to perfect the saints, to equip them for the work of the ministry and to bring them to unity of the faith in order to reveal the full measure of the stature of Christ.
What I am, Paul wrote, I am by the grace of God – none of us really deserve to ‘be’ anything!
Apostle Andre Pelser