The Chief of Staff to the Governor of Oyo State, Pastor (Dr.) Gbade Ojo has called on all Christians in the country to promote unity and harmony through their religion and similarly admonished them to make their impacts felt in the development of the nation’s polity.
He made the call while delivering a lecture at the 2017 Christ Apostolic Church (C.A.C.) Pastors’ Conference/Convention themed: “The Impact Driven Live and Ministry,” held at Ikire in Osun State.
Speaking on the topic “Christianity and Politics,” Pastor Ojo observed that men of God and the church have the responsibility of reshaping the nation and the polity, describing Christianity as the driving force behind true freedom.
He opined that men of God are needed in congress, power and government for needed positive change to take place, pointing out that Christians in many countries of the world are being persecuted, suffering under government they are powerless to change and government that hates their faith and silence their voices.
Pastor Ojo, cum lecturer and associate Professor of Comparative Politics from the University of Ilorin, Kwara State, who maintained that the type of leaders elected have a great influence on the freedom of Christians, further stated that those leaders might choose to restrict Christians’ right to worship and spread the gospel.
He added that that there was nothing wrong with Christians participating in politics, as long as they remember they were the ambassadors of Christ on earth, nothing that if a Christian did seek office, it should be to the glory of God and without compromising Christian principles.
According to him: “When my appointment was first announced, a number of people that were close to me expressed shock, amazement, disappointment and bewilderment that an holiness preacher like me could ever take up a political appointment with the fear that it could lead to compromising my faith or at worst, water down my strong sermons by usually rightly dividing the word of truth,” adding that the relationship between Christianity and politics is no doubt, historically interwoven.
While sharing the warped view of antagonists on politics, describing it as a “dirty game,” Pastor Ojo recalled the likes of Saul and David, among several others in the Holy Bible who have held various political positions and operated as kings, installed by God and accepted by men.
Noting without gainsaying that politics was indeed very crucial than to be left in the hands of unbelievers alone moreso that men were described as political animals, the guest lecturer stressed that within the church realm too, it has been noticed that politics is at the management level.
Pastor Ojo, also a church founder, used the occasion to charge all Christians to, as a matter of civic responsibility, pay their taxes and levies and be role models to motivate others who were unbelievers.
“As pastors, our role is to motivate our members to show interest but after we must have played our role of sound scriptural teachings. Then we leave them to their conscience and God’s leading,” He posited.
While praying for peace to reign in the country, the cleric also advised politicians to desist from promoting thuggery and other acts capable of causing chaos and violence in the country.
The COS, however, urged intending Christian politicians to lead by example and follow the dictates of the scriptures in their dealings.
Quoting relevant scriptures from the Holy Bible, Pastor Ojo, while urging Christians to desist from engaging in acts such as corruption and acquisition of ill-gotten wealth, added that the promotion of equity and justice must be embraced if Nigeria must fulfill its potentials.