A Day as a Social Media Maven

Originally posted on Live to Write - Write to Live:

Last Friday I had the wonderful experience of posting to a company’s Facebook and Twitter accounts for a day.

The company, actually an airport, had their 5th Customer Appreciation Day. This was my second year assisting with their social media activities. And, honestly, it was so much fun I can’t wait until next year.

Social media mavens early in the day

Social media mavens early in the day

These are my 3 big business-related takeaways:

  • Even if your company is equally active on Facebook and Twitter, a one-day event may not result in equal activity on each platform.

For the most part, we posted to Facebook and Twitter at similar times and with similar calls-to-action. We quickly realized Facebook users interacted with us the most. (Last year it was a 50/50 split). So, even if you have a Plan Of Action for the day based on past experience, one platform may leap ahead of the other. (this…

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Musings of a male granny: This retired schoolteacher spends his free time Skyping with Indian schoolkids

abujanig:

What a way to e-learn. Cheers.

Originally posted on TED Blog:

Kids at TK school gather around as David TK leads them in a clas..

Kids at a school in India gather around a computer as David Swancott leads a School in the Cloud session.

David Swancott is a retired biology teacher who lives an hour southeast of Bordeaux, France. He spends his free time bicycling, traveling and, for the past two years, being a “Skype Granny.” Swancott is a part of the “Granny Cloud,” a project created by 2013 TED Prize winner Sugata Mitra to make teachers available online to mentor children participating in his School in the Cloud. As children explore the big questions that matter to them, they get nudges in the right direction from a Skype Granny. But don’t let the name fool you. While many Granny Cloud participants are female and retired, just as many are male or in their 20s, 30s and 40s.

Now that the school year is underway, the TED Prize Blog checked in with one of our male grannies to ask about his experience…

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VINTAGE VOTARY FEAT. DITA

Originally posted on FWST:

IMG_3402i love shooting this lady for one reason, she owns her love for vintage clothing. A lot of people profess their love for vintage clothing but it all seems to end at photos or a cheap bargain at a thrift store., only a few really embody the aesthetics of vintage clothing like Dita does, and since I’m a votary of everything that celebrates the 50’s I have charged myself to document the wardrobe of this rare human and her wardrobe.

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7 ThingsThe Church Should Do Now The Truth

7 ThingsThe Church Should Do Now

Monday 25th August, 2014

In view of the various challenges facing the church in Nigeria, may I seek your kind permission to make some suggestions on ACTION POINTS for the church?

I am aware that the response of the church to the issues of the moment must be well articulated and corporately coordinated. Our responses will be in 3 stages:

  1. Short term
  2. Medium term
  3. Long term

Please consider these suggestions as forming part of the short term immediate steps that should be considered by Nigerian Christians.

Kindly permit me to stress that these suggestions are what I have been calling them: SUGGESTIONS. I do not consider myself competent or qualified to give directions to the church.

The suggestions should be prayerfully considered, even as they were prayerfully received for the benefit of the both the church and the nation.

NATIONAL DAY OF REPENTANCE

On 15th September, 2013, God spoke expressly to Prof. Anigbogu that “if care is not taken, in 30 – 40 years, Nigeria will be like Turkey”.

That warning from heaven carries some ominous messages with it. For example:

  1. The Nigerian church has an ultimatum of 30 years to take corrective measures or else, it will be completely overrun by Islam.
  2. We may be the last Christians in Nigeria. (God forbid!)
  3. We may not hand over Christianity to our children.

According to the assessment of heaven, the Nigerian church has become “irresponsible”.

I am writing this article towards the end of August 2014, one year after God issued the verdict concerning the Nigerian church. For that period of one year, what has been the corporate response of the Nigerian church to God?

NOTHING!

The Nigerian church has done nothing corporately to respond to the verdict. That is very dangerous. This kind of attitude can best be described as the “Eli syndrome”; after “Eli’s syndrome” comes Ichabod.

We must not treat this warning with levity or indifference because we are aware that the verdict from heaven is true. If the verdict is true, then the judgment must also be true.

Therefore, may I humbly suggest that we set apart one Sunday in September 2014, as a day of NATIONAL REPENTANCE and NATIONAL RE-DEDICATION? On that day, let every Christian assembly in Nigeria, as well as in the diaspora, pray prayers of repentance on behalf of the church and the nation. To allow the information to circulate may I also suggest the last Sunday, 28th September, 2014?

Thus, one year after God issued His verdict, we shall respond with national repentance.

God has already shown that He is ready to forgive us if we repent. On 1st August this year, He led us to raise a 6 hour altar of praises and repentance at the National Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos. During the prayer session, He spoke clearly that He has forgiven our nation. God Himself chose National Theatre as the venue for the praises. (Those who understand what went wrong with Nigeria will understand the significance of the National Theatre, the venue of FESTAC ’77.)

Since we have the assurance of receiving forgiveness, we should corporately, humbly, go before God as a nation.

There are many things to repent of: worship of mammon in the church and in the nation, blood guiltiness all over the land, idolatry, adultery and immorality, corruption, hypocrisy in the church, ritual killing and cultism, neglect of evangelism, indifference to the Great Commission, drug addiction, neglect of widows, orphans and the fatherless, oppression and injustice in the land, disobedience and carnality in the church, etc.

If it seems good in your eyes, let us corporately, as the Nigerian church, ask God for forgiveness on Sunday 28thSeptember, 2014.

DECLARE STATE OF EMERGENCY IN THE NIGERIAN CHURCH

Drastic situations, they say, require drastic actions.

The Nigerian government realized that a war has been declared against the nation and the government declared a state of emergency in the land. Should not the church, which is the main target of that war, also declare a state of emergency in the church?

In 2012, Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Boko Haram, said:

“This war is not political. It is religious. It is between Muslims and unbelievers (arna). It will stop when Islamic religion is the determinant in governance in Nigeria or, in the alternative, when all fighters are annihilated and no one is left to continue the fight. I warn all Muslims at this juncture that any Muslim who assists an unbeliever in this war should consider himself dead.”

This statement is a declaration of war against the nation and against the Church. The nation has responded by declaring a state of emergency. What is the church doing?

Rev. Moses Aransiola wrote a letter to the churches (www.kingdomnewsng.com) urging the church to declare a state of emergency to deal with the present challenges. The eminent Christian leader counselled that all activities in the church should be suspended and focus must be on militant and intercessory prayers until normalcy returns to the church and to the land. Suspend all activities and focus on prayers!

While the enemies of the church mobilize with carnal weapons, let the church mobilize its spiritual weapons and contend with the foes at the gate.

When power meets power, the lesser power must bow!

Every fellowship of Christians should henceforth give precedence and prominence to warfare and intercessory prayers against the hordes of hell that have risen against the purpose of God in Nigeria. Sunday worship, Bible Study, Vigils and meetings must be turned into prayer meetings.

Every platform that terrorism is standing upon in Nigeria must be prayerfully dismantled; the gods that did not create the heavens and the earth must perish from the earth and from under these heavens. (Jer. 10: 11)

Sir/ma, we have two options. We either go on our knees, or we go to war.

WHAT IS THE NAME OF YOUR STREET? (Evangelism Reloaded)

It is good to learn from the mistakes of others so that errors from the past do not destroy the future.

The entire North Africa was Christianity friendly until Islam overran it. What happened? The early “church fathers” were busy arguing doctrines with each other. They neglected evangelism and busied themselves expounding Biblical exegesis. On the day Islam arrived, there was no one to defend Christianity.

Before the Nigerian church falls into the same error, we need to re-focus every Christian immediately on evangelism.

Knowing full well that evangelism strikes terror and panic into the hearts of many Christians, here is a simple suggestion on how to do it effectively.

  1. Take a partner, and together select a street in your town/city. The street you have selected becomes your adopted vineyard before the Lord. Select a time of the week that is convenient for the two of you to spend one hour in a week on evangelism. Please do not go alone, utilize the wisdom of the Lord, (Luke 10: 1) He sent them out two by two.
  2. For the first three weeks, go to your street every week and do prayer walk. Intercede for every soul living on that street and pray for their salvation. Take authority over every satanic power and influence that hinders people from seeing the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Cor. 4: 4). Do this for the first three weeks.
  3. On the fourth week, begin to go from house to house with the message of the kingdom of God.
  4. The evangelism tools that you require can be downloaded free at www.houseofkaris.net We have over 50 different tracts titles covering various groups in the society. Simply copy the tracts that appeal to you and take to a printer. The tracts are free for you to copy.

If you prayed diligently for your “street”, when you commence evangelism, every soul will be quiet while you will be filled with boldness to proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God. Your prayers should not be restricted to the prayer walk. Continue to pray at your prayer altar at home.

Now, if a congregation has 500 adults, that congregation alone will cover 250 streets. Imagine the possibility of taking the gospel to every house in Nigeria within 3 months!

Let the revival begin!

So, what is the name of your street?

JOIN THE MOVEMENT:
FOR EVERY MUSLIM THERE IS CHRIST (MFC)

Please permit me to start by asking a question.

Which one is better, that God should kill the leader of Boko Haram or that he should become the modern day apostle Paul?

Which one will give God more glory, that the leader of Islam in Nigeria should succeed in getting amnesty for terrorists or that he should become a Deacon/Priest in your local assembly?

So, what are we waiting for? Let us pray all of them into the kingdom of God.

Let every Christian group or fellowship pick one “troublesome” leader of Islam, the more radical, the better, and concentrate prayers of salvation and divine visitation upon him. Pray until Jesus Christ appears to him or her. The last prayer of Stephen turned Saul from being the leader of Boko Haram in his days to Paul, the champion of Christianity. God can do it again and again if we would pray.

Do not be intimidated by the radicalism of any Muslim. There is no one that Christ cannot save. We should not forget that in prayers, we speak to God not to the Muslims and with our Father in heaven, all things are possible. We should remember that God has prophesied the conversion of the Middle East. Is. 19: 18-24.

Do not curse them, but bless them. Let the love of Christ in us overcome the hatred that is in the Muslims towards Christ and His church.

The Muslims have a vision of turning Nigeria into an Islamic nation. The vision they have is the original vision Jesus Christ gave to His church but the church became distracted and lost the vision. Let us recover what originally belongs to the church – that is the vision of “the knowledge of the glory of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea.”

When power meets power, the lesser power must bow.

Join the movement: Muslims for Christ (MFC)

Rom. 12: 21 – Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

DOCTRINAL SHIFT

Please permit me to share a true life story with you.

One of our senior brothers, a missionary, was on board a flight and he found himself seated beside a Lebanese Muslim. As he introduced himself as a Christian, the Lebanese picked interest in conversing with him.

“I contemplated becoming a Christian some time ago”, declared the Lebanese Muslim. In order to know more about Christianity, he started listening to Christian preachers on cable TV. After a few months of Christian diet, he decided to remain a Muslim.

Why?!

“Aha”, proclaimed the Lebanese Muslim triumphantly, “while Islam teaches you to make heaven, Christianity teaches you how to get the best in this life.”

This is our problem, a perversion of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Word of God makes it clear, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” 1 Cor. 15: 19

Unbelievers come to church and they think Christianity is only about prosperity and abundance. Meanwhile, it is only faith in Jesus Christ that guarantees eternal life. There is none other name under heaven  given among men, whereby we must be saved. Acts 4: 12.

Therefore, there must be an immediate doctrinal shift in the church. The preaching of money gospel must cease and the Nigerian church must return to the message of the cross, the message of the good news of the kingdom of God; the message of repentance from sin leading to eternal life.

The clarion call in the church now must be “discipleship”! In the past 20 years, the Nigerian church has not been raising disciples. Rather, it has focused on raising millionaires. We are all witnesses of the unfortunate results of that distraction. There must be a deliberate doctrinal shift in the church. Mammon must be dethroned in the church while Christ must be enthroned in His rightful position as the Lord of all.

Christians have a role to play in checking pastors who insist on preaching the prosperity message. The emphases of the church must be on raising disciples. Particularly amongst the youths, the church must focus on discipleship. Or else, if we succeed in halting the aggression of Islam, we may still lose the next generation to entertainment, drugs and internet.

(May I recommend some books? BEWARE OF SUCCESS deals with the distraction of prosperity in the church, while RETURN TO THE NARROW PATH focuses on raising disciples including Bible Study teaching outline. All the books can be downloaded FREE at www.houseofkaris.net) Ministries that have developed discipleship materials should please dust them and put them to active use. The church must urgently commence discipleship.

The issues surrounding persecution of Christians in the nation must not be hidden from Christian children. Pastors, Priests, Reverends, Prophets, must deliberately go to children’s church and explain these issues to the children. The Christian children and the Christian youths must be taught and trained to understand why they are Christians and why they must remain Christians. Please do not hide these issues from the children, the future belongs to them.

There must be a drastic doctrinal shift in the church.

SUPPORT FOR THE PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS

Have you ever heard of Invercargill? It is a city in New Zealand called the “end of the earth”. Invercargill is the farthest distance on earth from Jerusalem. For that purpose, it is called the “end of the earth.”

From Invercargill, the end of the earth, Christians came to visit and support persecuted Christians in northern Nigeria. We travelled with them to Gombe and to Jos. Meanwhile, where are the Nigerian Christians?

It is embarrassing that God had to go outside Nigeria to get foreign Christians to support and sustain our persecuted brethren. Many of us refused to leave our comfort zones. It is time to repent.

The Voice of Christian Martyrs has been in the forefront of mobilizing support for the persecuted Christians in Nigeria and every Christian in Nigeria should join in reinforcing and sustaining Christianity in the North. It is the least that we could do for Jesus Christ.

Whatever support that you give through the Voice of Christian Martyrs shall faithfully reach the widows, the orphans, the fatherless, the surviving gospel workers and the brethren in the North. It is in our collective interest to reinforce Christianity in the North of Nigeria.

There is a support program of minimum N500.00 monthly donation to support the persecuted brethren. Interested believers could send their donations to: The Voice of Christian Martyrs, Zenith Bank, 10 13 48 26 09www.stephensng.com

Let us show the enemies of God that our brethren are not destitute of kinsmen.

MOBILIZE POLITICAL AWARENESS

It is imperative that churches commence mobilization of Christians to register and ensure that they vote during the election. Not only that, Christians must be trained to ensure that they vote for candidates and parties that will protect the interest of Christianity in the nation.

Let us commence deliberate training of Christians to be politically intelligent and discerning. If the church does not use its numerical size to put righteous people in governance, the instrument of the state shall be used against the church. Whenever unrighteous people come into power, they use their influence to undermine the church. Christians must be politically discerning.

For your kind consideration, please.

Your brother in Christ,

B.

Twitter: @houseofkaris
http://www.kingdomnewsng.com

Comments  

0osho 2014-10-01 16:43

We need to map out strategy to deal with this Islamic agenda.Muslims strategies underground. Let can create dept.s to foil did agenda. This dept. Will follow up their plans and deseminate info. About it and advise on what to do.It can have divisions or units such as Prayer Unit, Finance Unit, Research Unit, Information Unit etc manned with seasoned pastors and christian academia in the field of Islamic Studies. We shouldn’t wait for governt. Some of the findings can be published. If the newspapers have been bought over by Muslims, let us set up independent christian media that will be accessible to Christians.

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0Sister Susan 2014-09-30 10:51

God bless the brother that The Lord has used to boldly speak out and we ask for divine protection over him and his household

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0Sister Susan 2014-09-30 10:47

Thank God for this exposure to believers. This has armed us with information. We need to act on this information so that the Lord will not continue to be angry with us as irresponsible Christians. 1
Thessalonians chapter 5 verses 1 to 6 and 1 Timothy 2
verses 1 to 3. Pls can this be included in our daily prayers both individually and as a church. It is a privilege and of great joy to serve The Lord

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0Pastor dpo ogundipe 2014-09-25 12:46

#1. Christians to start schools not for making money but raising disciple. christian college of educations. christian schools with affiliation,
#2. christian family to start raising pastor and erections of church building in front of each house
#3. parents to start encouraging their children to study biblical studies with the aim of becoming pastor that will lead others in worship

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0SIMEON 2014-09-24 22:22

The Church must surely take drastically action on the issue at stake. Prayer for the Church in Nigeria is very paramount. The leader of Christian must wake up to the task. All these information must handle with levity hand. However every Churches must forget about their Doctrine differences and come together and intensifying in prayers. I pray that Christianity will not be things of History in Nigeria. I vow that I must Pray for Christians and Christianity in Nigeria.

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0ruth 2014-09-23 09:13

D body of Christ (d church) must arise dis moment n do d work of an evangelist preaching d word in season n out of season we shall observe d prayers come 28 sept as d givs grace

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0Jonathan Ebbah 2014-09-19 15:36

There could never have been a better time to act. While these suggestions are laudible, I personally will want to see what’s CAN’s action plan? Let CAN come out with an official roadmap. As for me and my household, we’re set to key into this. We are ready to earnestly contend for the faith that was once delivered to the saint.

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0selbyen 2014-09-19 06:10

We’ve truely drifted from da original plan of God concerning our lives, the church is not united, its no. Longer the word but a diluted one to suit selfish aims. Eyyah! My heart is troubled, I pray for the grace to be bold and start from somewia, my spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. God is angry! But his mercy shall reign over us. We’ve persecuted christ in so many ways even in our way of life. He said he will raise up stones if we are not willing. Stop doing church/doctrine s and go back to raising an endtime army for the Lord. God have mercy!!!!!!

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+1Bayo 2014-09-18 16:18

End time every body calls it of the happening in the Church in Nigeria but me with different opinion. It is of more of wrong teachings perpetrated by the so called men of God for personal motives. And we can see that these men are living the prodigal lives and conTinue to promise false hope to their followers who are themselves blind because they want to be rich. All these new ideas of the Pentecostal should be discarded to pave way for the doctrine of Godliness. Quite diversionary. And for Gods sake all the branches of these denominations should allow the local branches to have access to their tithes and offerings meant for their welfare as the widows and orphans are suffering. Where I worship here, we have not been allowed to have access to the offerings for the past three years while the headquarters is busy erecting edifices that will collapse sometime.

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+1oluwole Tosin 2014-09-18 14:09

all we need is prayers

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0Nelly Nwandu 2014-09-18 10:57

I will definitely accept this challenge and begin immediately. I have often wondered why the Church is so quiet about the persecution of our brethren in the north.

The church is obviously in a state of deep slumber by corrupting itself on the lap of luxury.

God, please help me to be among the remnant. I cannot keep quiet while my brethren are being murdered daily

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0Okechukwu Igwe 2014-09-17 13:19

If the church and the individual are willing and obedient, God must be exalted above in our nations.

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0Pius uwua 2014-09-15 12:22

We must raised to our responsibility as a church of Christ and respond to this clarion call, But did we invest in inform?

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0Timothy Dalyop 2014-09-15 08:47

We preach love but we don’t practice it. We preach prosperity not holiness. For us to share Christ’ glory, we must share in his suffering. The Church should put more effort in raising disciples and also strategise the unity of ‘CAN’ by funding it to take care of the persecuted brethren. May the grace and mercy of the LORD be upon the Church. Amen!

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0Neriah 2014-09-14 23:15

D gates of islam shall not prevail. We will arise n work with God, for d global harvest of souls, starting frm home (Nigeria). O Lord, pls win d world tru us.

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0Busuyi 2014-09-13 14:40

There are so many distractions orchestrated from the pit of hell and if care is not taken many will be surprised to find themselves in hell because we have neglected the great commission it is my Prayer that God will give us a change of heart in Jesus name

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0Mary J 2014-09-13 12:56

Humn! The time is at hand, believers lets wake up.

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0Sunnday Idigba 2014-09-13 10:56

This is a clarion call for a great awakening of believers. we all need to refocus our attention from the vain & mundane things to the things of eternal value. Although prosperity is good for the spreading of the gospel Zech 1:17, but unfortunately men of God have turn it to self aggrandizement. Let us not forget the purpose of God prospering us. Since yesterday I have been troubled on the state of Nigeria and what we believers are doing. I made a U – turn to be focus on these end time events and play my role. Every church is too independent doing their own thing. Nigerian church must come together in unity of purpose.

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+1Apostle Sunday 2014-09-12 20:38

This is great awakening, this information is eye opening. I pray God’s empowerment on the Church at this time. Amen!

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0usionya doris 2014-09-10 23:19

Heavenly father,
We have all wandered far from your purpose and plan.
He hv willingly worked in the wrong direction.We disobeyed your command.
Father forgive us,spirit come lead us back to the way,back to the foot of the cross.
Show us the accient path,lead us along eternal.
We want follow the foot steps of Jesus,we want to enter ur rest.

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0Ogundipe Olayinka 2014-09-08 21:14

For Nigeria sake,i will not hold my peace…It is either we pray now or we leave the destiny of Nigeria and Nigerians at the mercy of gruesome boko haram sects……

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0Olaniyan Segun 2014-09-06 16:58

This is a message to the Church at large!

I am interested much more than before in Evangelism and I make a vow to continue proclaiming the Gospel of Christ in both real life and on the internet (blog) that people around me and those in far distance might know that it is only Christ that has the key to eternity.

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0Solomon Green 2014-09-04 01:43

These are information that need not only be digested and assimilated but to be acted upon and disseminated to fellow Christians.

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0Solomon Green 2014-09-04 01:41

These are information that need not only be digested and assimilated but to be acted upon and disseminated to fellow Christians.

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+2Promise Nufi Sabo 2014-08-29 15:53

We must raised to our responsibility as a church of Christ and respond to this clarion call

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Time To Declare State Of Emergency In The Church Rev. Moses Aransiola

Time To Declare State Of Emergency In The Church

TIME TO DECLARE A STATE OF EMERGENCY IN THE NIGERIAN CHURCH!

PREAMBLE

A British Newspaper recently published a remarkable story of an interview with a terrorist who was complaining about the failure of Hamas of Gaza to do huge damage inside Israel, despite firing hundreds and hundreds of rockets and missiles at the Jewish people. He had a unique explanation: “Their God changes the path of our rockets in mid-air”. Nigerian Christian believers must know that our PRAYERS to God of Israel matter a lot! Israel is not just defended by the courageous men and women of the Israel Defence Force (IDF) and the Iron Dome Missile Defence System. Israel is defended by the unseen hands of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. That same God is the God of Nigeria. He is our Judge, our Lawgiver, our King and He is the one keeping Nigeria (Isa. 33:22). We should therefore never hold our peace day or night, nor keep silent. We will give Him no rest till He establishes and till He makes Nigeria a praise in the earth (Isa. 62:6-7). What I am about to share is an accumulated spiritual burden of almost two years now. And this has several confirmations from leading ministers and intercessors across Nigeria and beyond. This passage from the book of 2 kings 3:16-17 aptly captures and explains this burden. And he said, Thus saith the LORD, Make this valley full of ditches (altars of prayers). For thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not see wind, neither shall ye see rain; yet that valley shall be filled with water, that ye may drink, both ye, and your cattle, and your beasts. (2 kings 3:16-17) God is saying – if you can raise me fervent and sustained Prayer Altars all over this troubled nation, then get ready for an uncommon, sudden and supernatural intervention from My presence. This to me is very encouraging and promising. THE PRESENT DISTRESS On October 1, 1960, the day Nigeria formally came into existence, the late premier of the Northern Region, Sir Ahmadu Bello, made a statement whose import did not seem to sink in for a long time. On that day, as most Nigerians were busy celebrating their independence, the premier made a declaration that has continued to haunt the nation. He had said:

“The new nation called Nigeria should be an estate of our great-grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We must use the minorities of the North as willing tools and the South as a conquered territory and never allow them to rule over us, and never allow them to have control over their future”. (Parrot Newspaper, 12th Oct. 1960; republished on November 13, 2002, by the Tribune Newspaper, Ibadan.)

Take this statement as the tap root of the religious war going on in Nigeria today (It is a religious and political war, make no mistake about it!). The fruit and the flower of this declaration can be deciphered in the stated declaration of Boko Haram, the terrorist group ravaging Nigeria. The mandate of Boko Haram, as declared by Abubakar Shekau, its leader, in a 2012 video recording now available on the Internet is clear and points inexorably to its inspirational source:

“… this [Boko Haram] war is not political. It is religious. It is between Muslims and unbelievers (arna). It will stop when Islamic religion is the determinant in governance in Nigeria or, in the alternative, when all fighters are annihilated and no one is left to continue the fight. I warn all Muslims at this juncture that any Muslim who assists an unbeliever in this war should consider himself dead.”

The first statement is an unprovoked declaration of war without end on Nigeria from the very day of its birth and naming, as well as on the hopes of other religious groups, especially Christians. The second is the physical fulfillment of the evil tree planted on Nigeria’s day of independence. The statements, fully digested and interpreted, explain why Nigeria has continued to move from one small crisis to greater one, never getting it right. It is the reason why Nigeria is a case study in arrested destiny. More than anything else that anyone can say, these two statements define the very moment that Nigeria is currently in, and that definition has been conveyed to us through the mass murder of Christians across Nigerian history and in particular through the well-oiled and systematic genocide that has been ongoing in Nigeria since 2009.

Nigeria has fought one war or the other across time, but no war is as deadly as the one that has been declared against Nigerian Christians and, sadly, many whose destiny are affected by the war are blissfully ignorant. Hosea 4:6a says, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…”.

Since the violent eruption of the most deadly war on Christians in 2009, the Boko Haram war, several thousands of Christians have been murdered, hundreds of thousands have fled their home – many of them to Cameroun. The Internal Displaced Monitoring Centre (IDMC) says Nigeria has the third largest population of internally displaced persons in Africa (about 3.3 million) and the third highest in the world.

In all the countries of the world where beatings, abductions, rapes, arrests, and forced marriages are recorded, Nigeria takes the lead – even over countries like Syria that are officially at war. A Jihad has been declared against the Nigerian Church and what we do now or fail to do will determine if the Church of God will still be standing when Christ returns. It is worth repeating that there is an Islamic agenda against Nigeria which the Islamist groups are carrying out.

Over 27 communities have been sacked, its residents killed or driven into exile in Borno State. In one Damboa LGA alone, another 20 communities have suffered the same fate. When the leaders of a community report to the army for protection, men dressed in army colours would visit them promptly, gather them together and fell them in their hundreds with bullets. Nigeria is unprotected by its paid police and army. Every day, Christians are dying in their numbers and nothing is being done about it.

In December 1856, the Fulani Jihadists besieged Osogbo town. Twenty years earlier, they had over-run Ilorin and put the town firmly under their grip, but never had they ventured beyond Ilorin up till that time. An army led by Balogun Oderinlo was dispatched from Ibadan to rescue Osogbo from the Jihadists. After initial reconnaissance, Balogun Oderinlo discovered that he was up to no match with the rampaging Jihadists as they were mainly cavalrymen with very strong horses while the Ibadan army were on foot and the avenue for the war was plain savannah, which would have made them easy prey for the invaders.

During one night, he infiltrated the camp of the Jihadists and poisoned their horses. The rest was finished during the day, the Jihadists were roundly trounced, and their advance was forcefully stopped at Ikirun. Both Osogbo and Ikirun are in present day Osun State. Osun State was created in 1991 and twenty years after the creation, it is firmly in the grips of a man who not only is suspected of having sentiments for the fundamentalist brand of Islam but one who with Jeroboamic passion actually resurrected all the pantheon of idols that Christianity had succeeded in reducing their impact with the declaration of a public holiday for Isese Day, a festival for celebration of idolatry. At the same time, schools with a background of Christianity were forcefully merged with others under a policy called ‘reclassification’. Now, the same Osun State where the advancement of the Jihadists was halted over 150 years ago is now the fulcrum of not only a brand of radical Islam but also a resurrection of idolatry as they seek to penetrate the South West. Ritual killing has now assumed an alarming dimension, especially in the South West.

According to Wikipedia, Boko Haram has killed over 2,000 civilians in the first half of 2014 in about 95 attacks and in the preceding 3 years more than 3,000. Initially, there was an apathy on the part of most Southerners as we initially thought it was a ‘northern’ affair. Even at that, the reality that it was a brazen attack on the Church in a bid to totally extinguish Christianity was lost on us. In an article ‘Re-introducing Northern Nigeria’ by Mark Amaza, he wrote that of the 19 Northern states, at least 5 have a Christian majority – Plateau, Adamawa, Nassarawa, Taraba and Benue. At least 6 more have at least 40% Christian population. These states include Niger, Gombe, Kaduna, Kogi, Kwara and either Borno or Bauchi. That then leaves only Kano, Kebbi, Katsina, Jigawa, Sokoto, Yobe and Zamfara as having Muslim populations above 60%. According to the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, over 750 churches have been burnt by Boko Haram.

However, the battle against Boko Haram would enter another gear with a twin bombing of targets in Apapa, Lagos on Wednesday June 25, 2014. With initial denials by the authorities, Boko Haram would later claim responsibility. Is Nigeria still truly part of the international community? Why then has the international community subtly taken the side of the aggressor? For a very long time America refused to designate Boko Haram a terrorist group until American interests became a target.

The international media have continued to fuel the fire by accusing the Nigerian military or blackmailing the government as the reason for the insurgence. Even Amnesty International conveniently betrayed its ethos by shamefacedly blaming the state and its agencies. Why would the international media and community want to take sides and overlook genocide in the north of Nigeria? Because they have sold themselves cheaply. Europe is being overrun by radical Islamic renaissance. America too is roasting in the same fire. The West is trying to court and not provoke Islam. The West is playing up PR tools, because it wants to continue its lifestyle that does not glorify God. Godlessness is ruling in the West; and it is impossible for the godless to lead a godly battle. Thus, the Western appeasement of the Islamic world is costing the poorer nations of the South, the international Christian community and even the natural state of Israel considerable harm. There is considerable evidence now in the public domain that America is the biggest funder of terrorism. Terrorists like Al Qaeda and even Boko Haram get the huge chunk of their funding from abduction. It is so easy the terrorists have labelled it their “low-hanging fruit”. Also, since WW2 (World War Two), America has poured over $5 billion dollars into Pakistan alone to help contain The Taliban and Al Qaeda, but the money goes expressly into funding Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups around the world. When America complains, Pakistan gets angry. The West shies from making the Arab nations angry, both individually and collectively. Self-preservation has thus made America and the West an ally of the terrorists they are fighting.

SUGGESTED WAY OUT

Where, then, do we turn to in this war of annihilation against Nigerian Christians? First, we need to turn back to God and turn back to ourselves. Every bloodshed that has taken place in this country against innocent people (Christians and Muslims alike) is an affront to the Almighty. It is a national sin from which no one or group is exempted before the throne of grace. We are, therefore, guilty of mass bloodshed as a nation. Our hands are vicariously full of the blood of our brothers and sisters shed by bestial religious fanatics. We all need to repent of this evil even though we and our Christian family are the victims. Nigerian Christians are double victims because they suffer the genocide and are yet made guilty vicariously. After repentance, we have work to do. IF NIGERIA IS A FREE NATION RULED UNDER A DEMOCRACY AND NOT A NATION OF SERFS, WE HAVE WORK TO DO BEFORE THE ELECTION OF 2015.

What to do:

1. Every Christian must be mobilized and educated about the real danger they face and so be constituted into a standing army of the faithful before the election. The battle before them is to come out and vote out any agenda or delegate of a cause that threatens their hope of peaceful and harmonious living. There is no law that says Christians cannot mobilize their group even for election. We have been too apologetic and the result is the pogrom we have allowed in the Church. We have a right to self-defence.

2. The Nigerian Christian community must decide collectively if they want to live to declare the glory of God (Psa. 116: 9) or to die, not according to God’s plan or will, but under the bullet of the enemy. If we choose life, then we must BARGAIN with our vote. For once, the Church must vote a government that will defend its freedom and corporate existence.

3. Before the election of 2015, the Church must begin the active campaign for COMMUNITY POLICING. The armed forces of Nigeria has failed and, from all indications, may continue to fail to protect the life and rights of Nigerian citizens in all the places of their abode. The solution is for people to take the protection of their lives more seriously. There are many more Nigerians than the army, the police and the Boko Haram put together. No insane force can defeat the people who stand guard over their lives and family. If government cannot do the first duty of governance, which is protect its people, then the people have a right to protect themselves. What is more, community policing has a double advantage: it is an effective solution for violent robbery as well as the mass murder going on in the country. America has shown that the only way to stop violent elements determined to kill is to undermine their confidence in their ability to solely impose terror. By 1964, and that’s quite a long time ago, there were over 4 million guns in ordinary American hands. That understanding by everyone is the reason why a group cannot take it upon itself to go on a killing spree. Isolated cases do happen, but not a network of terrorists expanding a hate project of killing en masse without check as is happening in Nigeria.

4. The youths of Nigeria are our wealth and everything must be done to defend them. It is no longer right, safe or wise to leave our youths without the ability to defend themselves militarily. From now on, Nigerian youths on the NYSC scheme must be given compulsory military training. That is what is done in all the civilized countries. Ultimately, every Nigerian should be trained to be his community peacekeeper. We cannot continue sending peacekeeping missions abroad when we have become the most insecure community on earth. Where is our sense of priority or rationalism?

5. From now on, the Nigerian Church should have a declared stand on the fate of the nation. The Church Fathers should get themselves and their fold into a strong advocacy on the fate of the nation. Nigeria is a blessed nation, but some people are determined to perpetuate a curse on it. The Church must return to the cause of the Cross and begin to work to enthrone righteousness and to decree the will of the Almighty. It is time for the Church leaders to declare a wholesale war over the multitude of evil that has kept Nigeria hostage and reduced our people – souls so precious to Christ that He came from heaven to die for them – to mere targets for some maniacs to waste.

6. It is barely six months to the election. THE CHURCH MUST DECLARE A STATE OF EMERGENCY OVER NIGERIA. ALL CHURCHES OF WHATEVER DENOMINATION SHOULD CLOSE DOWN THEIR PROGRAMMES AND TAKE UP A BATTLE CRY TO HEAVEN FOR NIGERIA AND THE CHURCH FOR THE NEXT THREE MONTHS. HEAVEN SHOULD HAVE NO OTHER PROGRAMME NOW UNTIL IT DELIVERS NIGERIA. This is the time for the Church to fight for the destiny of Nigeria. It is time to plead with the Mighty Man of War in heaven, for the God of the Church to take up the battle. This is what King Hezekiah did when his nation faced annihilation (2 Kgs. 19) and God gave him swift victory. How should the Church go about declaring the state of emergency of mobilizing several millions of believers to sustainable, fervent and importunate prayers for the survival of their faith and their nation?

There are clear Biblical patterns in several scriptures of the Bible. Joel 2:12-13 says: Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.

It says further in Joel 2: 14-17: Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly: Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet. Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?

If the Church unites to do this faithfully, the response of the Lord is sure, as declared in the same book of Joel 2: 18-19: Then will the LORD be jealous for his land, and pity his people. Yea, the LORD will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:

It has been predicted that unless Nigerian Christians take up the gauntlet and fight for their freedom now, Christianity may be wiped out in the country within the next forty years. This may sound incredible in some ears, but the systematic execution of the plan is what we are already seeing. To wipe out Christianity is to abort the destiny of Nigeria. But Nineveh preceded Nigeria. Nineveh was to be wiped out in exactly forty days and the prophet sent to it refused to go until he was imprisoned in the belly of the fish for three days.

What happened when he eventually went?

And the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the second time, saying, Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee. So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the LORD. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey. And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown. So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them. For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water: But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not? And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not (Jonah 3:1-10).

Again, in this passage, we see how God looked on the repentance of the people and forgave their sins and turned the calamity that was to befall them away. No matter how impending the doom, God can turn it away once He sees genuine repentance. Will the Church of Nigeria, the House of His Glory, bring collective and universal repentance to God today and He will not move on our behalf? How should the Church of God in Nigeria go to God in the three-month emergency?

We have another scriptural pattern in Lam. 2 14-16; 18-19: Thy prophets have seen vain and foolish things for thee: and they have not discovered thine iniquity, to turn away thy captivity; but have seen for thee false burdens and causes of banishment. All that pass by clap their hands at thee; they hiss and wag their head at the daughter of Jerusalem, saying, Is this the city that men call The perfection of beauty, The joy of the whole earth? All thine enemies have opened their mouth against thee: they hiss and gnash the teeth: they say, We have swallowed her up: certainly this is the day that we looked for; we have found, we have seen it (Lam. 2:14-16). Their heart cried unto the Lord, O wall of the daughter of Zion, let tears run down like a river day and night: give thyself no rest; let not the apple of thine eye cease. Arise, cry out in the night: in the beginning of the watches pour out thine heart like water before the face of the Lord: lift up thy hands toward him for the life of thy young children, that faint for hunger in the top of every street (Lam 2:18-19).

This passage tells how Zion, the joy of the whole world, became a reproach to all who knew it – just exactly as Nigeria has become reproach in the comity of nations. Zion had great destiny, but sin arrested it. Nigeria also has great destiny which sin is threatening to abort. If we do not cry to heaven for deliverance NOW, then we have surrendered the nation and future generations to the satanic plots over it. These Biblical examples show that the key to breaking the arm of Islamic agenda over Nigeria and restoring the country to its rightful destiny (a double advantage) is to go back to the Author of the Universe in repentance and supplication to restore, reinstate, re-establish, impose, consolidate and render immutable His original plan for Nigeria and His Church. Our God is waiting. He has been waiting since 1914. He has been waiting since October 1, 1960, when the spiritual manipulation of Nigeria’s destiny became a desperate politico-spiritual agenda of the enemies of the Church. Our God is on His throne waiting. Are we ready to meet Him in sobriety and supplication? Is the Church ready?

7. In view of these copious examples, the Church should arise and declare a three-month emergency. Within this initial 3-month period, let all Christian Churches virtually convert all their Sunday services and mid-week meetings to fervent and agonizing prayer, supplication and intercessory sessions to the God of heaven for His merciful help. This action will sound an alarm in heaven that the Church means business. All the congregation of God, as a united force, should turn to Him in repentance and mourning for the sin of the nation and seek His face in repentance. With three months of purposeful, heart-felt, desperate and collective prayers, God might turn the tide against the foe and bring deliverance. Time is ticking and the time to act is now. The more we delay, the more souls will perish needlessly. The enemy has declared the emergency, we have to take the battle to its gates and remove the evil from our land.

8. If anyone thinks this is a false alarm, remember Syria, Turkey, the whole region of the Asia Minor and much of the present-day Middle East. They were all Christian communities. They were the territories traversed by Paul in his missionary journeys. Great, effective and flourishing Churches were planted in these places by the early disciples, apostles and missionaries. Today, the envelope of darkness covers them all because they failed to heed the warning. The alarm has been sounded. Christ’s command stands for all time. What he is saying to His Church in these perilous times is the same thing He has said before: Watch and pray!

9. Finally, we must remember God’s open-door promise anticipated whatever we may be going through as a nation. Said He: “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land” ( 2 Chro.7:14). It is time for the church to awake from its slumber and defend its heritage! Delegating some ‘prayer specialists’ or intercessors as we are called to do this prayer work has not worked, nor has it produced the desired result for Nigeria. The situation on ground now demands the total involvement and commitment of the corporate Church in Nigeria. The Church in Nigeria must become one territorial Church in this matter. Thus we shall be fulfilling the prophecy of Isaiah 56:7, in becoming God’s House of Prayer for our nation, and the nations of the world. Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people (Isa. 56:7).

10. In all these things, we must never despair nor lose hope and faith. Our God is on the throne. His redemptive purpose, prophetic agenda and covenant promises over our nation are our weapons for this battle. Let us in penitent and tearful intercession remind Jehovah of all the profound things He has said over our nation, and plead with Him to, in-keeping with His nature, fulfil with His mighty hands, what has proceeded out of His mouth in righteousness. Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure: calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it (Isa. 46:9-11). I bring near my righteousness; it shall not be far off, and my salvation shall not tarry: and I will place salvation in Zion for Israel my glory (Isa. 46:13).

HOW THE ALTAR OF PRAYER SAVED RUSSIA

In 1996, I was in Russia for some meetings with the Russian church. We flew to Ukraine and I was with Pastor Sunday Adelaja for one week of Prayer School in Kiev. Several former Communists leaders were there en masse because they were hungry for God. There was this Russia General Superintendent of a denomination with several churches all over Russia. He was a former KGB (secret police) officer who had killed many Christian pastors, but now a minister of God. This miracle happened after ex-Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev had brought reformation that dismantled Communism.

At this time, American evangelists were coming to Russia in large numbers for evangelism. These Russians had been denied access to the Bible for seventy years. Now they were hungry for the Word of God and Bibles were being sent to them in millions. This ex-KGB now turned denominational superintendent grew very fast in the faith after his salvation.

It was time for the general elections and the incumbent president, Boris Yelsin, a drunkard, was performing dismally. The people at the top took over the businesses of the land and the country was left impoverished. Army officers were hungry and army captains could be seen beside the road begging for alms because salaries were unpaid. It was now the election time and Yelsin was campaigning to come back for another five years. He had a strong opposition in a Communist candidate called Gennandy Yugannov who reminded the electorates of the ‘glorious days of Communism’ and encouraged a return to communism.

Yugannov campaigned much against democracy and the opinion pool seemed to favour him. In the opinion poll conducted, those who wanted Communism to come back were 65-70%! Democracy of Yelsin took 20% and other parties 5%. With the result of the opinion poll, those in favour of Western democracy became afraid and desperate. Churches were packing up and American pastors who were in Russia started handing over their churches to the indigenes and preparing to return home.

One of these evangelists that came to establish churches handed over to the former KGB officer who was now a Christian leader as the General Superintendent. I was in one of the man’s churches to preach in the heat of all these where spoke on ‘the Role of Intercessory Altars in National Salvation’. For almost two hours of my speech, thousands of Russians listened to me and began praying, and weeping.

I said, “I challenge you to raise national prayer altars everywhere and communism will be soundly defeated”. The communist candidate had threatened that as soon as the communists come back to power, they would close down all churches and nationalize all companies again.

I admonished, “Let every Sunday meeting be turned into praying altars, including mid-week meetings. No more sermons, if you don’t want to go back to the dark days of communism, let there be a cry on every altar, ‘O Lord save Russia from return to the communist era…”

After my message, the Bishop took the microphone and said, “I make a covenant before God with God’s people in this country, I am going to shut down my Sunday services and turn them to prayer meetings for the nation of Russia. I will get other pastors and General Superintendents all over Russia to start prayer altars across the nation for national salvation and deliverance. Communism must never come again.”

I left Russia for Ukraine, and the Russian church started this prayer altar to pray across the length and breadth of Russia – cries of deliverance. When the election came, Boris Yetsin and the Democratic Party won by a landslide victory – 75% of the votes! God overturned the calculations of the communists. The national corporate altar prevailed.

God can do this in Nigeria; He can overturn the calculations of the enemies of the Church.

By Rev. Dr. Moses O. Aransiola

Int’l. National Director, Nigeria Prays.

E-Mail – mosearansiola@yahoo.comThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.”>

For further reading on altars, the book ‘The Altar, The Sacrifice, and The Blessing’ by the author please visit Redemption Bookshop, Kilometere 46 Lagos/Ibadan Expressway, and Scripture Union Bookshop Sango Ibadan.

Comments  

0Ugonma 2014-09-20 12:22

No man will share God’s glory

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0onma Akede Lauretta 2014-09-16 15:49

By the help of the Holy Spirit we will pray for our beloved country and we will succeed.

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0chinedu chukwu 2014-09-09 18:34

Thank God for this eye opening information,sin ce I listen to the cd of our beloved brother Bosun emmanuel,I have not been able to do any other thing without praying for this country,honestl y we are in serious trouble if we refuse to pray for Nigeria our country,every christian must wake up and pray,and now is the time to pray tomorrow may be too late,God is waiting for us to make a decree for Him to establish it,please brethren now is the time to pray against the Islamic agenda over Nigeria,don’t forget now is the time

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0daniel 2014-09-06 18:55

This is indeed challenging! I wish dis message can reachevery christian in nigeria so our eyes will be opened to da need for prayers! I believe christian leaders in CAN should delibrately bring dis declaration for 3months prayers to every single church in nigerial so 2geda we will return to the Lord! This piece shouldn’t just end here, it should be spread across d nation and I believe CAN as well as a few of us that have been previleged to come across dis have to play the role of reaching others with this! My part I will play, this mission to accomplish so help me God!

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0Chris 2014-09-03 08:34

Thanks for the clarion call. Surely, our God shall fight for us. One man will chase 1,000 (Joshua 23:10) and two men shall put 10,000 to flight (Deut 32:30), only if we fervently call upon Jesus – The Warrior that ends all wars. Arise brethren!

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0Pst Soji 2014-09-02 21:21

If the CD of Pst Bosun is any thing to go by,it is obvious the Church of Jesus In Nigeria must rise up to the challenge and not only pray but speak out. I full support the state of emergency. But what is CAN and PFN up to on this issue? Our leaders must never stop talking about this and also mobilize their followers to take this clarion call with all the seriousness it deserves . We must not stop praying. The Lord will surely intervene for us.

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0Radiation 2014-09-02 20:07

I thank God for the write up. This is in line with the message God gave me early in 2013 concerning the problems. I circulated the message under the title “THE SOLUTION TO NIGERIAN PROBLEMS IS IN THE HAND OF THE CHURCH”. I will forward it to this author and this publisher I am only knowing today for more Christians to read and act.

One addition to the message: Repentance is not something to pray, it is something to do. Let each of us do it while praying with confession. Again, let us pray “thy kingdom come and thy will be done in Nigeria”. Enjoy peace

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0jacob 2014-08-31 20:26

Thank you for this sir. We need to listen to a cd by one pastor Bosun Emmanuel. every xtian needs to listen to it and take decision about it bcos we are in seriouse trouble, I mean the xtians.. we need to come together now instead of this divisioen being captalised to destroy xtianity and xtians.if we had reached d bokoharam they would be carrying bible instead of ak 47.

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0victor uche adibe 2014-08-30 03:23

OH LORD GIVE ME THE GRACE TO FIGHT FOR THE SOUL OF MY COUNTRY NIGERIA

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0Julius 2014-08-24 18:22

King David was both a warrior and the leader of Israel.Nigeria can Christians can toll that line as well.We should not fold our arms and think that help will come from anywhere.Unless we rise up and challenge the idolatrous foundation, nothing may happen.However, with prayer and Zealousness in things of God, especially evangelism will help while exploiting other avanue.

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+1Pastor Seyi Afolabi 2014-08-23 19:18

This is a thought provoking message and a timely warning to Nigerian Christians. May God give us obedient ears and hearts in Jesus’ name.

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0Rev Gbenga Adekoya 2014-08-20 09:11

Zec 4:6 Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

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0Femi 2014-08-19 17:01

This is the way forward. While Joshua was in battle, Moses was on the mountain with Hur and Aaron.

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0Damilare Adetayo 2014-08-19 14:50

This is an amazing message from the throne of grace and every Nigerian MUST receive it and act on it immediately. God spoke to us as a family even this morning in our morning devotion from the same book of Isaiah 62. Let every Church in Nigeria rise in unity and wage war against the enemy of the saint, as we humbly run to God for help!

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0Temilolu 2014-08-19 13:23

The counsel of God shall stand. Jehovah Sabaoth, El-Elohe- Nigeria is His Name and He will fight for us. Amen

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0Benjamin 2014-08-18 20:02

This is great. Very illuminating. I believe every christian should read this and go on their knees without delay. Please include a Facebook link for this article. We need the intervention of God in Nigeria very urgently. Thank you for the clarion call.

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Boko Haram Killed 1,000 Christians In One Day? Martin Barillas – Speroforum

Boko Haram Killed 1,000 Christians In One Day?

Nigeria: Muslim terrorists kill 1,000 Christians in one day

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rl4IgD–nKg
Video purports to show massacre of Nigerian troops and civilians in Gwoza, a town in northeastern Nigeria. It is there that as many as 1000 Christians were killed: a modern record.

BY MARTIN BARILLAS

Tens of thousands of Christians are fleeing northeastern Nigeria, following killings and the burning and destruction of several churches by the Boko Haram Muslim sect. According to Fr . Patrick Tor Alumuku, Social Communications officer in the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja, “I spoke to priests in Maiduguri (Ed. note: the capital of BornoState in northeastern Nigeria where Boko Haram is most active) who speak of terrifying happenings.”  According to the priest,  “Boko Haram is determined to eliminate every sign of Christian presence and many churches have been destroyed or torched. Last week in a village in the area of Maiduguri, Boko Haram took over the parish for its local headquarters.”

Catholic Bishop Oliver Dashe Doeme of Maiduguri, “in areas where Boko Haram is active Christians are fleeing by the thousands. ” He reported that at least 90,000 Catholics are now displaced by the Islamist rebels who are challenging the sovereignty of the Nigerian government.

According to the Fides news service, Father Patrick said, “However, among the crowds of Christians in flight there are also Muslims.” He added, “Some are chiefs of villages and towns, others are Muslim religious leaders (emirs) who cannot identify with what is being committed by Boko Haram.”

“Unfortunately a good number of these displaced persons cannot escape from the combat areas and getting humanitarian aid to them is very difficult. Only people outside these areas can reached by assistance” the Father Patrick continued. “If a city likeMaiduguri with a population of more than one million were to be attacked by the BokoHaram offensive, the result would be an extremely serious humanitarian disaster.”

When contacted by Spero News, Nigerian-American attorney and human rights activist Emmanuel Ogebe spoke of the horrors being faced by Nigerian Christians at the hands of Boko Haram, which has been linked to the Al-Qaeda terrorist group. Said Ogebe, “Our local partners say a couple more towns fell to the terrorists over the weekend, including a predominantly Christian safe haven where we normally stay during trips to the violent northeast.”

Ogebe is special counsel to the Justice for Jos Project and the Jubilee Campaign, both of which have spoken forcefully about the predations made by Muslim Nigerians against Christians. In June 2014, Ogebe testified before Congress about the inroads Boko Haram has made in Nigerian territories where Muslims and Christians had previously lived in relative peace.

Speaking to the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations of the House of Representatives, Ogebe said in June 2014 “It took the US twenty-five months after the first two Americans were attacked and one year after the third and fourth Americans were targeted before Boko Haram was designated a Foreign Terrorist Organization.” He went on to note that the United Kingdom and the European Union were similarly tardy in recognizing the threat posed by Boko Haram when the group was finally designated a terrorist organization.  Ogebe criticized the Nigerian government for its lack of responsiveness to the terrorist threat, especially in light of the abduction and rape of over 300 girls from a school in Chibok in June 2014.

Ogebe described in an email to Spero News more recent horrors being visited upon Christians in Nigeria. He wrote, “Our local partner’s female cousin is amongst those killed by Boko Haramindicating that they are killing Christian women too which is different from the takeover of Gwoza. InGwoza, they beheaded Christian men and married off their wives when they declared an Islamic caliphate two weeks ago. According to Boko Haram’s own video, Abubakar Shekau claims he killed 1,000 Christians on that day. This has not been reported in the media as far as we can tell but is contained in his YouTube statement. We are investigating this but since he controls the town it is impossible to tell. If true this is the worst single day massacre of Christians anywhere in contemporary history.”

The video in question was released by Boko Haram on August 24 and can be seen on YouTube.Shekau is seen on the video boasting of Boko Haram’s victories and slaughter, while calling on Nigerians to accept Islam. According to SaharaTV, Boko Haram released the video in order to celebrate the seizing of the town of Gwoza, which the group has declared is the capital of a new Islamic caliphate in Nigeria.  is its new headquarters for a new Islamic caliphate in Nigeria. The video also showed examples of the weapons captured from Nigerian security forces. In addition, the video showed Nigerian troops abandoning their positions as civilians fled for their lives. In a statement, the media source declared “SaharaReporters could not show that last 10 minutes of the video because it contains gruesome images committed by Boko Haram militants against innocent civilians in Gwoza.’

Earlier this year, a female suicide bomber detonated an explosive device, killing herself and four worshippers outright at a Catholic parish church. The attacker is described as a girl of approximately 18 years in age. According to one report, it was on July 27 when she was asked by soldiers guarding the church why she was wearing traditional Muslim attire that covered her from head to foot that she unleashed the deadly blast. At least 70 persons were injured on the scene, while three of the wounded subsequently died in hospital.

In early June,  Catholic Archbishop Alfred Adewale Martins of Lagos wrote a pastoral statement in which he said that Boko Haram’s tactics are ever more worrisome because the insurgents are seeking to “conquer” territories and force Nigeria’s military to respond. Entitled “Take to heart”, Archbishop Martin’s statement said “it is most disheartening to see women and children blowing themselves up in the guise of fighting a religious war.”

Comments  

0Sunday Chinedu 2014-10-04 06:43

I greet you all. The problem with Christianity in Nigeria is that we have forsaken the ways of God and followed the materials of the world. Remember in the book of Revelations the warning to the Churches that were all located in modern day Turkey. Yes Turkey used to be 100% Christian. But today the reverse is the case. Despite the warnings,the Christians of that era ignored God’s warning. Note that same thing is happening now in Nigeria. Ethnic sentiments,self ishness,wickedn ess are amongst the factors bringing down Christianity in Nigeria. We might be the last Christians. Repent and be like Christ,then our God will arise and keep us safe.

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-1Ambrose Ayeyan 2014-09-19 15:35

Yes Brother Kenneth.
But the Holy Spirit is waiting for us to pray and shout Amen! in unison.
Now, tell me: Is it going to happen? If so, when?
Presently Deeper Life does not believe that Redeemed is born again. Winners don’t think Catholics will go to heaven.
I am in CAC. We are being told to believe that Celestials are ritualists. How can we break this demonic yoke from off our necks oh God!

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+2kenneth C. Wiper 2014-09-12 20:56

these news are hurtful. I keep having this message that Christians can humble the boko haram activist to the true God if we appropriate what is deposited in us, AK 47 can refuse to fire before us, bomb can refuse to blast, we can command seasonal blindness on anyone opposing the truth of the gospel and it will happen instantly, we can command hands raised to wither. This power is majorly provoked as we are committed to witnessing. Acts 1:8. These challenge facing us is meant to awaken us not to weaken us.

Tony Blair: 7 Principles to Counter Religious Extremism

Tony Blair: 7 Principles to Counter Religious Extremism

In this essay, Tony Blair sets out seven principles of understanding that he believes should underpin a comprehensive strategy to counter religious extremism:

The horrifying events of the past weeks in Syria and Iraq have significantly shifted the terms of the debate about whether intervention is desirable or sensible to counter the violence in the Middle East and its potential impact back in our own countries.

President Obama is rightly building the broadest possible coalition for action against ISIS and should be given all support necessary. It is also clear that he is developing US strategy in a way that recognises that the threat is bigger and broader than ISIS. This is important and should also be supported. Secretary John Kerry has succeeded in putting together a formidable array of allies for the immediate task; France has already taken action; David Cameron is pledging British support. Today’s leaders have this opportunity: as a result of changes in the politics of the Middle East, there is a real possibility of building a coalition that goes far beyond the West. Leading Arab nations are also part of the coalition. This is invaluable and corrects one of the principal weaknesses of Western strategy after September 11th 2001.

In addition, there are at least the beginnings of an emerging consensus which is global, about the nature of the threat we face. It is clear that there is a fundamental problem with radical Islamism; clear that it is deep; clear that the solutions are not easy or presently to hand; clear that this is the work of a generation not an election cycle; and clear – most important of all – that this is ‘our’ challenge and not simply ‘theirs’.

Without a comprehensive strategy, we will face a future marked by conflict and instability across swathes of the world and major acts of terrorism in our own lands.

However there is still hesitation and unresolved expanses of discord in how we describe the problem and therefore in how we confront it. Here I will set out my analysis of what has happened, what is happening and what will happen and my belief that without a comprehensive strategy, we will face a future marked by conflict and instability across swathes of the world and major acts of terrorism in our own lands.

By all means let us take strong action against ISIS and against the citizens of our own country that seek to join them. But action against ISIS alone will not suffice. We need to recognise the global nature of the problem, the scale of it, and from that analysis contrive the set of policies that will resolve it. I want to set out seven principles of understanding that I believe should underpin such a strategy.

Islamism of course is not the same as Islam. The religion of Islam is an Abrahamic religion of compassion and mercy. For centuries it shamed Christendom with its advances in science and social development. This is not a clash of civilisations. It is a struggle between those who believe in peaceful co-existence for people of all faiths and none; and extremists who would use religion wrongly as a source of violence and conflict. Our enemies are those who would pervert Islam. Our allies are the many Muslims the world over who are the principal victims of such a perversion.

I also completely accept that strains of extremism are not limited to the faith of Islam. Such strains exist in most faiths. But not on this scale or with this effect. I agree too that in times past, Christianity exhibited cruelty and engaged in persecution that produced war and suffering. How Christianity escaped from that madness, is its own story. But we’re dealing with the present.

The views I put forward are of course in part shaped by my experience dealing with this issue as Prime Minister after the terror attack, planned from the training camps of Afghanistan, of September 11th 2001, in which over 3000 innocent people lost their lives on the streets of New York and elsewhere; and the terror attacks in Britain of 7 July 2005 by British born Muslims. But they’re equally the product of the last 7 years spent outside official office, in the Middle East every month, seeing and hearing first-hand what is happening there and having the opportunity, without the vastly varied in-tray of a leader in office, to study this phenomenon.

The two Foundations which I have established – one around Africa Governance and the other concerned with promoting respect between religious faiths and countering extremism – have also allowed me to examine the dynamics of what is happening not only in the Middle East but in the world, precisely around the challenge we now face. In the case of the Faith Foundation the connection is obvious. In the case of the Africa Governance Initiative, though it is primarily about helping African Governments implement vital programmes of change, it is increasingly clear that unless a way is found to deal with the de-stabilising power of religious extremism many African countries will be unable to make the progress they so urgently need.

So this is why I chose to do what I now do. I became convinced whilst PM that this was the issue of our time. I am even more convinced now.

1. Join the Dots. It Is One Struggle

There has been a tendency to see the conflicts happening in different parts of the world as unconnected, as driven by a collection of separate, essentially localised disputes. So we respond to each in its own way. One crisis arises and we act; another rears its head and we take another action. Or perhaps better we should describe our policy as a series of reactions. We have not yet a sense of a unifying core of strategic analysis leading to a set of actions that are governed by that core and that have coherence on a global scale.

They have one huge and central element in common: extremism based on an interpretation of Islam which represents a clear ideology.

I say that what is happening in Syria, Iraq, and across the Middle East; and what is happening in Pakistan, Nigeria, Mali, or in parts of Russia or in the Xinjiang province of China or in multiple other parts of the globe, are linked. They form different parts of one struggle. They all have their individual aspects. They all have unique dimensions. It would be odd if it weren’t so. But they have one huge and central element in common: extremism based on an interpretation of Islam which represents a clear ideology that, even if loosely at times, is shared by all these different groups of extremists.

So in every case there are distinct factors. Some are to do with long standing grievances over territory, or ethnic and tribal differences. Some are protests against central Governments and policies of repression. Some involve a dispute over the ownership and management of resources. But to deny as a result of these distinct factors, the common factor of religious extremism and of a particular ideology associated with the extremism, is wrong as a piece of analysis and dangerous in its consequences for policy.

I understand this is a contentious analysis. For example, in respect of the Middle East there has been a revival of the old Sykes-Picot debates, and whether it was the drawing of the map of the region by the British and French back in 1920 which is at the root of the present troubles. This is a quaint but ultimately fanciful explanation for what is happening. It is true of course that some of the lines then drawn have been fiercely contested. Some were at the time. True also that there are those within the region who see a chance in all the chaos, to right a perceived wrong of the past, since it is certainly true that the lines were drawn not by the people of the region but by the external powers, Britain and France.

But since those lines were put, however capriciously on the cartographers table almost 100 years ago, (and there was less caprice in it than sometimes imagined), the region has undergone a vast demographic transformation and become the centre of the world’s energy production.

For example, in 1920, the population of the UK was around 50m; France 40m; Germany 60m. Today the figures are roughly 60m for UK and France and 80m for Germany. i.e. a significant increase but not a transformation. Consider the figures for countries of the Mid East (not all obviously affected by Sykes-Picot, but all part of the same region). Egypt in 1920, 13m; now almost 90m. Syria less than 2m in 1920, by 2011, over 20m; Iraq in 1920, under 3m, now over 30m. Saudi Arabia had a population of just over 3m. Today it boasts 30m. Ancient Palestine, a hundred years ago, had less than 1m Arabs and Jews combined; now it is around 12m for Israel and the Palestinian Territories.

In 1920, oil production was minimal. The people, small in number, eked out a living often as poor farmers.

The last century has been transformative in a unique way in the Middle East. Going back would not be easy.

In any event all of these problems would be manageable if there was not violence and terror being visited on the region. Yes, there are long standing grievances and scars of tribe and tradition; but the reason why there is a living nightmare in the Middle East today, is not because of the politics of identity, but the politics of hate driven by Islamist extremism.

It isn’t the case that if we dealt with the historic issues of identity and boundaries, we would curb the extremism; it is literally the other way round: if we eliminated the extremism, we could resolve the issues of identity and borders.

The ideologies of the 20th C which caused such distress and conflict also manifested themselves in existing grievances and disputes in a variety of different ways and situations. But there is no doubt that the common factor of shared ideology crucially impacted both the manner in which conflicts arose and the vehemence with which they were conducted. Revolutionary communism had many faces. So did fascism. But their essential ideological character played a defining part in how the history of the 20th C was written, the alliances that were formed, the spheres of influence created. We have to see this ideology born out of a perversion of religious faith, in the same way.

In saying this I do not want at all to minimise the importance of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict or its effect on extremism. I believe this conflict remains absolutely central to the future of the region. I speak and write about it so much I do not want to repeat myself here.

However I think it is also now clear that this conflict, in itself, cannot explain the turmoil of the region at this present time.

By seeing the struggle against Radical Islamism as one, albeit with many different arenas of action, we then can see plainly what before has been obscured: that no strategy to counter it, will work, unless it is comprehensive i.e. unless the big picture is perceived and understood. This alone has fundamental implications for policy.

So we are right in the immediate term to concentrate on defeating ISIS. Defeating them is indeed vital. But another ISIS will quickly arise to take their place unless we go to the root of the issue and deal with this ideology wherever and however it shows itself on a coordinated global basis.

2. The Problem is Getting Worse not Better

The evidence is clear: the problem is growing not diminishing. The coverage of these issues in the Western media is led by events. The more horrific – such as the murders of the hostages – the more it intrudes on our conscience. But the truth is whilst we have focused on the hideous rampage of ISIS out of Syria into Iraq, the killing in Syria has continued, with now more dead than in the whole of Iraq since 2003; the slaughter of the innocent by Boko Haram in Nigeriagoes on; the growth of militia violence in Libya is unabated (and I warn that Libya is going to become a problem potentially as bad as Syria if we do not take care); in Xinjiang in the last months hundreds have died and in the hill country of Pakistan the Army of the State fights an existential battle against terrorism, with hundreds of thousands displaced.

The timely summit on Africa held by President Obama in the early part of August swiftly became as much about the terrorist menace as about the more positive story of investment and commercial opportunity. Countries like Kenya are confronted now with an extraordinary challenge that puts at risk all the immense and substantial progress of the past years; and this has happened in the space of months.

The evidence is clear: the problem is growing not diminishing.

And I haven’t even mentioned Somalia or Yemen or the Central African Republic or the travails of Central Asia. Just last week, we saw terrorist attacks in Thailand and a foiled plot in Uganda, neither country normally featuring on the roll call of extremism; and of course the arrests in Australia.

In our own countries, the biggest security threat we face: our own citizens – radicalised Muslims – who have gone to fight ‘Jihad’ in Syria, returning home battle-hardened and bent on bringing their ‘holy’ war to our own towns and cities.

In a grim harbinger of things to come, the spectre of anti-Semitism is again stalking the streets of Europe. The response of the political class has so far been confined to strong statements of disapproval. But this is an evil that requires gripping right now with firm and uncompromising action against both the perpetrators of violence and their ideological fellow travellers. When, a few days back, Chancellor Merkel took the extraordinary step of attending a rally in Berlin against anti-Semitism, accompanied by her entire Cabinet, it was a welcome response to recent events in Germany; but it was also an illustration of the seriousness of the problem.

3. The Challenge is a Spectrum not Simply a Fringe

This argument goes to the heart of the scale of the challenge and why we find it so hard to comprehend it, let alone defeat it. The problem is not that we’re facing a fringe of crazy people, a sort of weird cult confined to a few fanatics. If it was, we could probably root it out, kill or imprison its leaders, deter its followers and close the doors to new recruits.

The problem is that we’re facing a spectrum of opinion based on a world view which stretches far further into parts of Muslim society. At the furthest end is the fringe. But at the other end are those who may completely oppose some of the things the fringe does and who would never themselves dream of committing acts of violence, but who unfortunately share certain elements of the fanatic’s world view. These elements comprise, inter alia: a belief in religious exclusivity not merely in spiritual but in temporal terms; a desire to re-shape society according to a set of social and political norms, based on religious belief about Islam, wholly at odds with the way the rest of the world has developed, for example in relation to attitudes to women; a view of the West, particularly the USA, that is innately hostile and regards it essentially as the enemy, not only in policy but in culture and way of living.

The problem is that we’re facing a spectrum of opinion based on a world view which stretches far further into parts of Muslim society.

This Islamism – a politicisation of religion to an intense and all-encompassing degree – is not confined to a fringe. It is an ideology (and a theology derived from Salafist thinking) taught and preached every day to millions, actually to tens of millions, in some mosques, certain madrassas, and in formal and informal education systems the world over.

It is the spectrum that helps create the fringe. A large part of Western policy – and something I remember so well fighting in Government – is based on the belief that we can compromise with the spectrum in the hope of marginalising the fringe. This is a fateful error. All we do is to legitimise the spectrum, which then gives ideological oxygen to the fringe.

Compile a compendium of all the formal and informal methods of teaching religion in Muslim communities, even in our own countries, and what you will find is much more frightening than you would think: that in many countries even those considered moderate, there is nonetheless a significant number of young people taught a view of religion and the world that is exclusive, reactionary and in the context of a world whose hallmark is people mixing together across the boundaries of race and culture, totally contrary to what those young people need to succeed in the 21st C. Only Foundations like my own and the Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund are even attempting such an endeavour – a sign of the paucity of the strategy, on a global scale, which we require.

Then go to the online following of the more radical clerics and see how some, including those with views actually very close to the fringe, have followers numbered not in thousands or even tens of thousands, but in millions. Read some of the twitter feed coming out of parts of the Mid East. Read the sermons that some of the most acclaimed radical clerics give. Mohamed al-Araifi, banned in 26 European countries for his views on women and Jews, alone has 10 million people who subscribe to his account.

So we may naturally prefer to see these people who have come to our attention in the last weeks as isolated lunatics, to be hunted down like serial killers and with their demise the problem is eradicated. Would that it were so. But it isn’t. Unless we confront the spectrum as well as the fringe, we will only eliminate one group and then be faced with another.

4. Fight the Fringe; Speak Out against the Spectrum

The fringe and the spectrum require different strategies. There is a clear difference between those with whom we disagree, however strongly, and those who are an active security threat.

We have to fight the fringe. Here are certain guiding principles of analysis when devising the means of doing so.

The first is that it is hard to envisage compromise with such people. They have no reasonable demands upon which we can negotiate. This is not like Irish Republicanism. There may be individual conflicts – like the Mindanao dispute in the Philippines – where there can be a peace agreement reached because the primary cause of conflict is local. But in general, though political engagement can reduce the support and freedom of manoeuvre of the fanatics, or divide off the merely disaffected, as was the case in Iraq up to 2010, there is no alternative to fighting and defeating the hard-core.

At a certain point, once they know superior and determined force is being used against them, some of them at least may be prepared to change. And some undoubtedly have taken up arms because of genuine grievances. So yes it is true that in Iraq after 2006, as a result of the ‘Awakening’, the political process that brought the Sunni tribes to an understanding with the Government was crucial. However so was the surge; so was the day after day, night after night, war of attrition and suppression waged with such courage by US, UK and other forces.

The second is that the moment they cease to be fought against they grow; and fast. ISIS now controls a territory in Syria and Iraq larger than the size of the UK. Just think about that, let its full ghastly implications sink in. This is right on the doorstep of Europe. Boko Haram was reported recently to have taken the Northern city of Bama in Nigeria. Weapons from Libya together with funding have increased their reach and firepower. Libya itself is in the grip of warring factions where the risk is not just the vanquishing of internal stability, but the export of arms, money and extremist personnel across the world. As fighters are pushed out of Yemen, they go across to Somalia and from there across west to the northern parts of Sub-Saharan Africa. With territory comes the opportunity for these groups to gain money through extortion and kidnapping, to access resources, and build manpower.

The third is that whilst terror is upright and busy, it is impossible for any country to solve its everyday challenges and embrace with confidence the future. It is not simply the act of terror and the fact of carnage that de-stabilises a nation. It is the fear, the chaos, the tremor throughout the whole of society, deepening fault-lines, exacerbating existing divisions and giving birth to new ones. That is why it has to be fought against with vigour and without relenting.

Fourth and hardest of all, because the enemy we’re fighting is fanatical, because they are prepared both to kill and to die there is no solution that doesn’t involve force applied with a willingness to take casualties in carrying the fight through to the end.

This is where we get to the rub. We have to fight groups like ISIS. There can be an abundance of diplomacy, all necessary relief of humanitarian suffering, every conceivable statement of condemnation which we can muster, but unless they’re accompanied by physical combat, we will mitigate the problem but not overcome it.

Airpower is a major component of this to be sure, especially with the new weapons available to us. But – and this is the hard truth – airpower alone will not suffice. They can be hemmed in, harried and to a degree contained by airpower. But they can’t be defeated by it.

If possible, others closer to the field of battle, with a more immediate interest, can be given the weapons and the training to carry the fight; and in some, perhaps many cases, that will work. It may work in the case of ISIS. There is real evidence that now countries in the Middle East are prepared to shoulder responsibility and I accept fully there is no appetite for ground engagement in the West.

But we should not rule it out in the future if it is absolutely necessary. Provided that there is the consent of the population directly threatened and with the broadest achievable alliance, (to which I return below), we have, on occasions, to play our part. To those who say that after the campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq, we have no stomach for such a commitment, I would reply the difficulties we encountered there, are in part intrinsic to the nature of the battle being waged. And our capacity and capability to wage the battle effectively are second to none in part because of our experience there.

However we’re not talking here about armies of occupation. We are, in certain situations where it is necessary and subject to all proper limitations, talking about committing ground forces, especially those with special capabilities.

What helped turn the tide back in favour of Assad in Syria was the entry into the conflict of Iranian backed Hezbollah. They fought the ground war. They took casualties. On one account I was given, in a short period before the end of 2013, they took more casualties than the UK in the whole of Iraq in the years we were present there. For the same reasons extremist groups rose to prominence in the Syrian opposition because they were prepared to fight where the battle was hottest.

I know as well as anyone all the difficulties in advocating even the contemplation of such a course.

I know as well as anyone all the difficulties in advocating even the contemplation of such a course. It may require change whether in NATO or within the framework of European Defence to improve the force capability we have presently and our ability to work in alliance with others. It may even require a new configuration of combat forces altogether. But I repeat: you cannot uproot this extremism unless you go to where it originates and fight it.

The spectrum is a different matter. Here the most important thing is to expose it, to speak out against it, to make sure that at each point along the spectrum the proponents of this ideology are taken on and countered; but also be prepared to engage in dialogue and to acknowledge, as has been the case in Tunisia, that some of those on this spectrum may be willing to leave it. So there should be openness in our attitude, but the total absence of naivety. To engage successfully, we have to be willing to confront.

We are not doing this as of yet. The truth is that Islamism, unless fundamentally reformed, is incompatible with modern economies and open-minded, religiously pluralistic societies. This truth has to be recognised. This is not to say that it should be subject to oppression. Certainly in our types of society, people are perfectly entitled to hold views that we believe are destructive to our way of life and that we profoundly disagree with. Provided that that they express them within the law, that is their right.

But it is also our right to point out why they are indeed incompatible with all we hold dear. And it is our duty, if we believe in what we say we do, to take on the argument with vigour and to watch with vigilance to see that Islamism does play by the rules in our own country. And where, as so often abroad, they operate outside the law and seek to subvert progress we should be keen to expose them and be loyal to those, in these countries, who share our way of thinking.

This is why I argue that in the Middle East and elsewhere, we should not view the ideological struggle between Islamists and those who want open-minded societies, as one in which we’re neutral. There is a side we should take. And we should do so with energy, because they need our support.

This is why what has happened in Egypt is so important and what will happen in the future is vital; including to our own interests. Of course there will be disagreements, sometimes strong ones, – as over the jailing of the Al-Jazeera journalists or the death sentences handed down to hundreds of people in one ruling. I am not suggesting we do not criticise where it is right to do so. This is not advocating a policy of ‘turning a blind eye’ to human rights abuses. It is simply realising that in the complexity of the situation the country finds itself, we have to be the friend onside and supportive – though prepared to speak critically – not the distant commentator blind to the reality of the assault on its way of life by radical Islamism which this ancient and proud civilisation of Egypt faces.

Governments are not NGOs. We have to represent and advance broad strategic interests in defence of our values. It is massively to our advantage that President Sisi succeeds. We should help him. We should not make the mistake of dealing with the Muslim Brotherhood as if it were merely an Arab version of the Christian Democrats. It isn’t and there is little sign it ever will be.

World-wide, we should be on the look-out for where there is evidence that Islamist organisations are on the march. Those that fund and support them should know that we’re watching, should know that what they want hidden, will instead be exposed to the light.

5. Support Modern-minded Muslim Opinion. They Are Our Allies

One of the tragic myths of the past years has been the idea in the West – almost like a new Orientalism – that Arabs in particular and even Muslims in general are irredeemably lost in the mire of religious and ethnic dispute, that their mind-set is incompatible with democracy, that the whole thing is really about Shia vs Sunni, that they’re condemned by some invincible force of history to be in conflict and mayhem.

You still hear people say ‘Arabs think this’ or ‘the feeling in the Muslim world is that’. This is no more accurate than saying ‘the British think this’ or ‘Christians think that’. The fact is that opinion on most issues in the West is divided. There is a plethora of views. It is no different today in the Arab or Muslim world.

The true significance of the so-called Arab Spring – in reality a series of revolutions across the region – has not been properly understood in the West. Having been initially naive about the ease with which societies creaking under oppressive regimes and out of date institutions could make the transition to modernity, we’re now in danger of making the opposite mistake, believing that the instability that has followed these revolutions shows the inherent incapability of those societies to adapt and change.

What we’re actually witnessing is an agonising, immensely challenging but profound transition away from the past to the future.

What we’re actually witnessing is an agonising, immensely challenging but profound transition away from the past to the future. The regimes ultimately collapsed under the weight of their own contradictions, the biggest one being the contradiction between the need for a modern economy and well educated workforce in societies of burgeoning populations; and the reality of a system totally unsuited to such an economy and the absence of such education. Islamism often became the way that people protested against the regime under which they were groaning. When the old order passed away or came under attack, there was then a struggle between those who wanted a modern economy and society to come into being and those who wanted to turn instead to a religiously based order.

This is still the essential battle.

The lesson from Iraq or Afghanistan is that where it is possible to have a process of evolution, then that is the optimal outcome, because the instability which accompanies revolution and the ousting of the old order is so difficult to bring under control and in the disorder that follows revolution, the wrecking forces of extremism have the opportunity to get out on parade.

This is why in respect of both Libya and Syria, as I argued at the time, it would have been better, if it had been possible, to have had an agreed process of change even if it meant for a transitional period leaving the existing leadership in place as the change happened.

However where the Western debate misses the point is in thinking that the systems that have been in place or still are, were or are sustainable for the long term. In other words when people say things like – maybe it would have been better if Saddam were still governing Iraq or Gaddafi in Libya or now want us suddenly to ally ourselves with Assad because then at least we would have stability, they fail to understand one crucial point: the people living under those regimes won’t accept it. The promise of stability of such a kind is hollow. This is the significance of the revolutions. So leave aside the actual misery of the people under those Governments. What the events following 2011 show is that the choice is revolution vs evolution. The status quo is not on offer. That is where the Islamists and the liberals agree.

The problem with the modern-minded elements – if we can describe them like that – is that they are numerous but not organised; whereas the Islamists are both numerous and well organised.

The important thing now is that we recognise that this struggle is ongoing, that it is not lost, and that we should do all we can to ally ourselves with those who want to get to the future but face inordinate challenges in doing so.

This issue – so connected with the debate inside Islam – cannot in the end be won other than by Muslims. But we have both an interest in the outcome and a role in supporting those who realise that the only hope for the future lies in a world in which different faiths and cultures learn to live with each other in mutual harmony and respect.

6. East and West Should Work Together

One thing is irrefutable: this is a challenge which East and West share. The extremism and its attendant ideology have caused serious attacks and terror in both Russia and China to say nothing of course of India. So the great powers of the East, without doubt, desire the right outcome to this battle as much as us.

The extremism and its attendant ideology have caused serious attacks and terror in both Russia and China to say nothing of course of India.

I completely understand the hesitation of the West at any notion of an alliance in any form with Russia. The events in Ukraine cast their long and dark shadow. For the avoidance of doubt, let me make it clear I am not suggesting that we reduce our pressure on Russia in any way in respect of Ukraine. I am not contemplating some omnibus deal in which in return for help against the forces of Islamism, we yield on the proper protection of the people of Eastern Europe.

I am making two points. The first is that the main security challenge of the 21st C remains the Islamist threat. I do not minimise the risk of a more conventional confrontation between the big powers such as we saw in the 20th C. It is possible that Russia, relinquishing the old Soviet armour, decides to wear new battle garb forged by exaggerated sentiments of nationalism and to take it to the point of all-out war. We should certainly not be complacent about the danger.

But my belief is that the 21st C will not repeat the pattern of earlier times. The stakes are too high; the lessons of history too unambiguous. I think the principal threat today will come from non-State actors or from rogue States. Look at the death and terror of the past years since 9/11, and most of it has come from these sources. Radical Islamism is the issue.

On this issue, we need the East as partners. We need them as partners for many reasons to do with effective action against the threat, to coordinate, to cooperate and to disrupt the activities of the Islamists. But we need them for another reason. As will be very obvious reading the propaganda of the extremists and those further along the spectrum, essential to the propagation of their world view is the notion that this is a fight between the culture of the West and Muslims.

We need to have it absolutely clear that this is false. It is actually a global battle between those who believe in religious tolerance and respect across boundaries of faith and culture; and those who don’t; between those who accept globalisation and those who don’t, not because globalisation produces injustice, but because it necessarily involves the mixing and mingling of people.

In making this case, it is important – I would say essential – to have East and West lined up together. India should have a central part in any such alliance of nations East and West, because of its size, its experience and its religious composition.

7. Education is a Security Issue

This is the question upon which the least is said in this whole debate, which is both perplexing and alarming. Each and every day the world over, millions, even tens of millions of young children are taught formally in school or in informal settings, a view of the world that is hostile to those of different beliefs. That world view has been promulgated, proselytised and preached as a result of vast networks of funding and organisation, some coming out of the Middle East, others now locally fostered. These are the incubators of the radicalism. In particular the export of the doctrines of Salafi Wahhabism has had a huge impact on the teaching of Islam round the world.

I am not saying that they teach youngsters to be extremists. I am sure most don’t. But they teach them to take their place on the spectrum. They teach a view of the world that warps young and unformed minds, and places them in a position of tension with those who think differently.

If we do not tackle this question with the honesty and openness it demands, then all the security measures and all the fighting will count for nothing. As I have said before, especially foolish is the idea that we leave this process of the generational deformation of the mind undisturbed, at the same time as we spend billions on security relationships to counter the very threat we allow to be created.

We need at the G20, or some other appropriate forum, as soon as we can, to raise this issue as a matter of urgent global importance and work on a common charter to be accepted by all nations, and endorsed by the UN, which makes it a common obligation to ensure that throughout our education systems, we’re committed to teaching the virtue of religious respect. This doesn’t mean an end to religious schools or that we oblige countries to teach their children that all religions are the same. Catholic schools will continue to teach their children the virtues of the Catholic faith. Muslim countries will continue to teach their children the value of being Muslim. But we should all teach that people who have a different faith are to be treated equally and respected as such. And we should take care to root out teaching that inspires hatred or hostility.

The work which my Foundation does – now in 30 different countries – shows clearly the benefits of education programmes which teach young people about ‘the other’ in ways which enhance mutual respect. There is plenty of evidence such programmes work. We just need to act on it.

This should be a common global obligation, like action to root out racism or action to protect the environment. Nations should feel the pressure to promote respect and to eradicate disrespect.

Nations should feel the pressure to promote respect and to eradicate disrespect.

It follows from all the above that what is required is a major overhaul of policy. This should be done without recrimination or unnecessary dispute about the past. There will continue to be fierce debate about the post 9/11 decisions particularly Iraq. But the fact of the Arab revolutions since 2011 in the Middle East and North Africa and the obvious prevalence of the Islamist problem far beyond the boundaries of either Iraq or Afghanistan, mean that this issue has to be re-thought and debated anew.

Neither should anything here be taken as a criticism of the new generation of leadership in the West. On the contrary I sympathise enormously with the challenge which it is their grave responsibility to meet. This is a problem of the first magnitude. It dismayed and often disoriented those of us before them. It will continue well beyond the present leaders. Certainly we made mistakes. And for sure our understanding frequently fell short. This is the way of things when new and original threats of great significance arise. But now we need to pool our energies and focus our attention, learning from the past so as better to address the future, without a narrow or partisan political debate, without attempts to discredit or decry, but with the combined rigour of analysis and action the situation now urgently demands.