”Give to others, and you will receive. You will be given much. It will be poured into your hands–more than you can hold. You will be given so much that it will spill into your lap. The way you give to others is the way God will give to you.” Luke 6:38 EASY TO READ VERSION
So much has been said about Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor’s private jet. I wish to lend my voice in this regard. But permit me to make a few points first before I go into details.
1. It is not the responsibility of Pastors to eradicate poverty and create wealth in the society. This is squarely the call of government. The Church (members and pastors) may voluntarily get involved by providing social amenities to ease the pain of the people. Today, a good number of congregations are involved in this regard.
2. The fact that someone is surrounded by 1000 poor people does not mean he too should deliberately make himself poor or deprive himself necessities of life (what you may call luxury) that he can afford. If that rich man who is living in the midst of a 1000 poor has found a means to support them, then all tongues should hold their peace.
3. Righteousness or luxury has no direct relationship to sin. The fact that a man can afford luxury (what I call necessity) is not an indication that he has lost his right standing before God. Many people are in affluence and wealth and are living holy lives pleasing to God.
When the news about Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor’s private jet broke, the media went agog and as expected it was blown out of proportion and reported mostly from a subjective view point. I believe this was done not just to deceive its audience, but an intelligent way to put the Church, especially the Pentecostals in bad light.
As a Christian and one has spent more than half of his lifetime in the media, I felt it proper to put things in their right perspectives.
Journalism has its ethics like every other profession. For any news story to be accepted as such, it must have the following ingredients; (1) truthful (2)accurate (3) objective. If any news story is short of these, it amounts to nothing short of propaganda. So far, stories in the press about Ayo Oritsejafor’s private jet have been short of these ingredients. The amount of time and energy spent by pressmen deliberately misinforming the public has not been accorded Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor. I believe this is unjournalistic. For a truthful, accurate and objective reportage, the press must respect the right of Pastor Ayo and members of his congregation. The press must also present a balanced story to its audience as this is the only sacred duty it owes the public.
First we heard that he ‘acquired’ a jet for himself. Then another reported that his Church members bought it for him as a birthday gift. This is where our pressmen showed themselves to be confused. Assuming they are all correct: what is wrong with Ayo Oritsejafor buying a private jet if he can afford it? Again, what is wrong with his Church members buying him one if they too have the means to get one for their pastor whom they believe has invested so much into them?
I will again point out three things to consider before buying anything. Ask yourself these questions before you buy anything, especially what might be considered expensive. (1) Do I need it? (2) Can I afford it? (3) If I cannot afford it, is there an alternative?
Does Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor need a jet? Yes, he does. Could he afford it? No, he could not and that explains why he had never bought one. His alternative had always been a car. So how did he get one? Those who could afford it and appreciate his sacrifices in ministry deemed it fit to honour him. Now he has one.
Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor needs a jet like every other person. He is no less a human being because he is a pastor. Being a pastor does not mean signing a contract with poverty. If the gospel must be preached to all nations, this his jet is not enough. We actually need more. This his jet is not a luxury but a necessity. It is necessary for the Church of Jesus Christ to have all she needs to get going with the gospel. The Oyakhilomes, Oyedepos, Adeboyes, Kumuyis, Ukachis, etc, all need at least one jet. I mean at least a jet each for the work they are doing around the world.
It is on record that this man being persecuted has in the last 8 years paid fees of over 100 students all alone. How many people calling for his head today have done that including the likes of Mallam el Rufai who stole lands from the poor and sold to himself, his wives and business associates as a federal minister? Was it not he who sold government properties and agencies to his cronies? The fact that one has not been found guilty does not mean he never did it.
If it is true that if you educate a girl child, you educate a whole nation, imagine the number of nations Pastor Ayo has educated in the last 8 years alone! Now he is being blessed by God to the point of overflow, people are calling him names. Please read Luke 6:38 again, (see text above.)
As a servant of God he has tried his best to create wealth through his scholarship scheme, though it is not his call. The fact that a jet was given to him does not mean he has lost his right standing with God. Neither does it mean that he no more has compassion for the poor. In fact, I advocate that the Church should acquire submarines to get into the deepest parts of the earth to preach this gospel. If we can afford it, why not!
Jesus Christ borrowed a place to have His last supper with His disciples. He borrowed a mule to ride into Jerusalem. Do we continue borrowing? How many people will give to Ayo Oritsejafor if he came asking for a jet? Will you not tell him to go and ask his God for one? Now that his God has given him, tongues are wagging. Please hold your peace.