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Report on TB Joshua, the man in the Synagogue

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Report on TB Joshua, the man in the Synagogue

A report on my visitation to the Synagogue, Church of All Nations, Lagos, 
Nigeria overseen by Snr. Prophet T.B. Joshua 
Bennie Rothmann, 2000-09-12

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"And by speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God." 
1 Cor 2:4,5

The Synagogue

During the period of 25 August and 1 September 2000, a group of 44 people from South Africa and Botswana visited The Synagogue, Church of All Nations (located in the city of Lagos, Nigeria). This group included a number of pastors and laymen as well as ordinary people (some with sicknesses) eager to see and experience the mighty healing power of God through the prophet T.B. Joshua. Leon Botha invited Calvern van der Merwe and me to join the group - as one can only be invited to go to the Synagogue.

During our visit, we have heard it many times: "I am not the healer. I know the Healer and His name is Jesus Christ." These are the words of T.B. Joshua, the overseer of The Synagogue, Church of All Nations.

What we have seen

We have seen miracles upon miracles of healing, deliverance, salvation and restoration (cancer, diabetics, typhoid fever, hernia, malaria, etc) - all done in the mighty Name of Jesus Christ. The exception was when someone was not healed. Most of the healings though were evident only after a few days and could not be visually confirmed on the spot - but the relieve from pain came immediately.

We have seen how five people rose to their feet - one from a wheelchair and the other from backseats of motorcars: once unable to walk, but now completely healed and rejoicing in God.

During our visit we have seen how more 50 people were cured from the dreadful disease of HIV positive/AIDS. This is a reality and not a hoax! Because of the controversy nature of the disease, people that come for prayer must have a valid medical certificate less than 2 months old stating their HIV positive status. And they were all healed! Immediately they were healed of the symptoms and once they go for a medical test, they discover they are HIV negative again. Ever wondered if there is a cure for AIDS? There is! His Name is Jesus Christ.

We have seen how demon possessed people fall and shake on the floor as the man of God confronted the evil spirits. To some extend it was frightening - sometimes comical. We have seen how the agents of Satan (Ogbanjes) twist and turn on the ground as the consuming fire of the Holy Spirit cleanses them of their evil and destructive powers. We have seen how the captives were set free as they confess Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and saviour and vowed to live for Him alone and sin no more.

We have also watched video after video of miracles, deliverances and teachings performed by the prophet T.B. Joshua that was recorded over the past few years.

We even witnessed the healing of a mental case - a crazy man with no clothes on.

Still there is a lot that we haven't witnessed yet.

Where is the power?

I was very heart-sore during the first few days. Tears were flowing as I see the pleading and pain in the eyes of the victims of sicknesses and disease - not because I pity them (for they get healed anyway). I was crying because I pity myself and the condition of the churches in South Africa: powerless to save people from the clutches of sin and sicknesses. How ironic - we claim to know how it works, but where is the power?

The question I asked myself so many times: "Why are we not functioning in the same capacity of power as here in the Synagogue of all Nations? We ought to be like this… This is our destiny. What are we doing wrong?"

A man of God?

Everybody in the church refers to T.B. Joshua as "The man of God" or "the prophet", thus recognizing his anointing and calling from God.

He is mission orientated and once said: "Personally, I strongly believe that God will always provide for all my needs till the end of the mission He sent me to accomplish."

Once asked by one of his disciples if he is a man of God, his answer was: "Brother, I can not answer you this question. It will be self-righteous if I should say I am a man of God. But let my works testify of who I am."

It reminds me of Jesus' answer to John the Baptist when John sent two of his disciples to Jesus with the question: "Are You the coming one or do we look for another?"

Jesus answered and said to them, "Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me."
 Mat 11:3-6

The prophet T.B. Joshua spends a lot of time talking to God. We even had the privilege of visiting his prayer mountain where he spends hours daily in the presence of God. Even before church services he will not show up unless the Holy Spirit directs him to.

Why Nigeria?

People in Africa generally do not hide things from one another. It is part of their culture to be open and unashamed. Westerners are too shy to show their problems - they try to hide and cover up from one another. They are too afraid to be ashamed. It is pride.

This is even true in the medical field: In general Africans do not have the medical facilities to treat sicknesses and diseases. If you are sick, you are sick. You either recover from it or you do not (and face death!) Your physical health is usually a direct indication of your spiritual health. (Just like the lepers in the time of the Bible). One cannot treat and hide diseases as easily as in the developed countries. Treating the sickness is treating the symptom of something deeper. The Western society is good at covering up the symptoms of this deeper problem - which is sin eventually. But it cannot remove the origin of the problem.

People in Nigeria are not ashamed to uncover their privacy. Maybe this is why God is using a man like T.B. Joshua amongst these people to show the world what God is able to do - even in embarrassment to our pride!

The Cause of Sicknesses

"The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly."
 Joh 10:10

All forms of sicknesses and diseases, allergies and phobias, aliments and infections, accidents and calamities, etc, are NOT from God. God is not the author and designer of these things. Satan is the inventor of it all.

What then gives the devil the right to lay these things on a human being?

Sin - including the sin of the forefathers of the third and fourth generation - and the lack of spiritual knowledge. Sin gives Satan the legitimate right to steal, kill and destroy.

"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord" 
Rom 6:23

Glory be to God who has sent Jesus Christ to break the yoke of bondage and give us life and abundance of life through the forgiveness of sin. By the ministry of God's divine forgiveness and deliverance, people are set free from sin and sicknesses.

Understanding Healing

Most of the healings done by T.B. Joshua took place over a period of a few days (2 to 7 days - even more). The way the prophet works is to remove the source of the sickness in the spiritual realm (i.e. the demonic operation) that causes the sickness. Sicknesses and diseases are only the symptom of demonic activity. That is why he seldom touches the sick or speaks to them - he stretches out his right hand or just stares them in the eyes and "operate" in the spirit. Usually the person has not control over his/her own spirit and they stumble or fall around during the ministry.

Once the deliverance is done, the healing of God sets in. It is also remarkable to see how the sicknesses come out of the body (e.g. cancerous growth) after a few days. This might be disturbing to see.

Public Confession of Sin

The prophet T.B. Joshua emphasise a righteous life before God. His motto for the people of his church is: "Sin no more" (Joh 5:14).

That is why public confession of sins plays an important role in his church. This is usually done in front of a video camera or during church meetings. Only when you confess your sins before a righteous man, can you receive divine deliverance from sin and strongholds.

Our paradigms were deeply challenged during the Sunday service when the prophet exposed the sin of his church members (through the word of knowledge). He would call out names of people and the sin they have committed. This was done in great detail as if he was present when the sin had been committed! These people then need to stand up and confess their sin to the whole congregation in great depth. It is of no use for them to hide sin or to lie since the Spirit of God shows the prophet every hidden sin of the people.

"Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?" 
Psalm 139:7

The prophet is hard on people that sinned. He even prays the fire from heaven down on the sinners - to great amusement to the rest of the congregation. This is in order to cleanse them and deliver from the demonic activity they were victims of. There are exceptions to the case - he is led by the Holy Spirit.

How easy is it for us to hide sin from our spiritual leaders? It is quite easy to confess your sin to God, but how easy is it to confess your sin to your pastor or your congregation?

"But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us form all sin." 
1 John 1:7

Church Services

There are two main church services during the week. The normal Sunday service, and the Wednesday healing service. The services starts at 6 am as people rush through the gates of the Synagogue to fall in the healing line. Sicknesses are categorized and written out on placards. There is no need to advertise. The tree that produces the right kind of fruit will attract many.

As the people await the prophet's arrival, they are shown videos of healings and deliverances (pre-recorded). Once the prophet has arrived (at the time God has appointed), the service can last from 8 to 14 hours (even more) depending on the needs of the people. This has challenged my paradigms completely!

The church building can seat approximately 30,000 people. In order for everyone to follow the events, television sets (approx. 80) are located all over the church premises. The video ministry are responsible to televise all the events during the service. And they need to spark to keep up with the prophet!

Hospitality

We as foreign visitors were overwhelmed by the hospitality during our stay at the Synagogue, Church of all Nations. We were given free accommodation (with air-conditioning!), free meals (three times a day) and free transport from and to the airport. We also were given videos and sermon notes at the end of our visits. It didn't cost us anything (except the cold drinks and merchandise we bought at the local shop). We were treated and served as special guests. They washed our dishes, made up our beds, cleaned the bedrooms and bathrooms - even washed some of our clothes. They gave us the best places in whatever is happening during the church services, and the privilege to dance and rejoice with the people who gave their testimonies of healing or deliverance. On the last day of our visit, we had also the special privilege to interview TB Joshua individually.

I event felt that we have been "set up" in the way that we were treated.

Spiritual Harmony

One thing that we have noticed is the harmony in which the people work together. Wherever we went and whatever the time (even during the night), people were working at the church. We did not find any person coordinating and managing the workers (not that I could see). As they are gifted, people offer their services and time for the cause of the church, be that with the sound, cleaning, video editing, building, preparing the food, teaching, etc.

No one is actually working for a salary (I may be wrong) - yet there were a lot of people working and living at the church, day and night. They eat, sleep and live in the church premises. Food and water are also provided at minimal cost to feed the workers and all those who recover from sicknesses, poverty and oppression. The man of God even gives money to some of the people to re-establish them in businesses once they are healed.

Is this how the church of Acts 4 functioned?

During the extent of our visit we had to remain on the church premises. This was the only way they can guarantee our safety.

Conclusion

How can I ever forget my trip to Nigeria? A week was too short to grasp it all. It is as if I have walked with the apostles of old, witnessing their deeds and actions. The Bible has never been a greater reality for me than here in the Synagogue, Church of all Nations. If I didn't know Jesus was sitting at the right hand of the Father, I would say He is at the Synagogue of All Nations. By this I emphasize that God wants all of us to be like Jesus Christ - it is possible.

I bless God for the great honour to visit the Synagogue and witness these signs and wonders through His prophet T.B. Joshua. I am glad that "I wasn't there yet" in my Christian walk. I still need to know what it is to be "married with Jesus Christ" as prophet T.B. Joshua once said. "Spirit immersed in spirit". I still have something to see forward! Hallelujah! There is still a lot more to receive than this spiritual "elegant sufficiency" I have experienced for far too long.

I thank God for Leon who has invited me to go on this trip. Most of all I thank God for hearing my prayer that day!

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