General News of Tuesday, 27 November 2012
Source: Pastors For Peace
"STOP ATTACKING RELIGIOUS LEADERS, WE ARE FOR PEACE"
We have observed with heavy hearts and great worry, recent happenings in our beloved country Ghana with respect to the way "men of God" are being harangued, insulted, maligned and vilified by a cross section of the Ghanaian populace for doing nothing but our God given duty of setting the nation on the right course.
We are using this press release to make an urgent appeal to all well-meaning, peace loving and God-fearing Ghanaians.
Scripture says in Deuteronomy 5:16 and re-echoes it in Ephesians 6:1-3 "Children be obedient to your parents in the Lord – that is what uprightness demands. The first commandment that has a promise attached to it is: Honour your father and mother, and the promise is: so that you may have long life and prosper in the land"
According to scripture itself this is the only commandment with a promise; first, that you may have long life and second that you may prosper. Prosperity is not necessarily having all the money and wealth that one can imagine but having the gift of peace of mind, health, energy and ability to be able to enjoy a good quality of life.
This two-fold promise of long life and prosperity can only be secured by the giving of "honour" and not through prayers or a multitude of good deeds.
You may be asking: why this scriptural quote?
In every home, country or organizational unit God appoints, selects people to be leaders. Fathers-in-the-Lord. That is why the first church the Catholic church calls their pastors Reverend Fathers, not because they are carnal fathers but because they serve as spiritual fathers as all men of God do; men of God to redeem us as Ghanaians from the hands of the enemy.
In the first book of the Prophet Samuel God appointed Saul as King of Israel through the Prophet Samuel. At every point in time God has acted through his prophets, messengers, men of God to bring the salvific message to his people. Gideon was also anointed by a prophet to redeem the Israelites.
As Christians we refer to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as our fathers in faith. In Genesis 12, Abraham was called to be a father to many nations. As Christians we are redeemed by the sacrifice of Christ as a result of the covenant between Abraham and God.
Every country has its founding fathers, the USA recognizes Abraham Lincoln and several others as founding fathers. Germany has Otto von Bismarck and Konrad Adenauer; Nigeria has Professor Eyo Ita, Alvan Ikoku, Nnamdi Azikwe, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Obafemi Awolowo among others.
In Ghana we also have our own: Kwame Nkrumah, William Ofori-Atta, Obetsebi-Lamptey, George Paa Grant, Edward Akufo-Addo and Ebenezar Ako-Adjei. We thank God that President Kufuor caused special recognition to be given to these great fathers of ours by putting their image on our national currency, the cedi.
Teachers who teach our children and all those who lead us at various levels serve as our "fathers" and deserve our honour.
These are all people who are honoured because they are recognized as "fathers' of their various nations.
1 Chronicles 16:22 "touch not my anointed: and do no evil to my prophets." It is the responsibility of all who call themselves men of God to take a stance for what is right and just and pleasing to God. We cannot be hypocritical about it. As pastors and shepherds we have every right to ask that we are not dragged into partisan politics and used for the parochial interests of one side or the other.
Our sermons, and comments are aimed at the edification of society and not meant to be twisted and turned to suit the purposes of anyone. The spiritual ramifications for us as a people are great. People who have spoken out of turn against men of God who have done no wrong have to recant and repent. For we serve as ambassadors of Christ and are due the honour meant Him so long as we continue to do His work.
We strongly condemn all the recent indiscriminate and ongoing attacks on men of God. The bible speaks of the severe repercussions of such actions. It is no wonder that with the abundance of natural resources we still suffer immense poverty and hardships as individuals and as a country.
We are calling on all well meaning Ghanaians, who profess to be Christians not to allow any person or group of persons as a country to lead us astray for again the bible tells us that: "But you are a chosen generation, a kingly priesthood, a holy nation, a purchased people: that you may declare his virtues, who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light" 1 Peter 2:9.
We are human and as such bound to stray; sometimes attracted by the thought of power, money and wealth beyond our wildest imagination. We need to as a country make a conscious effort to turn back to God with all our hearts.
Power is meant to serve and not lord it over others, to terrify and cheat. Political power especially within a democratic dispensation like ours is meant to do no more than ensure that systems work properly and that an environment is created for each and every single citizen to be able to develop their God-given talent. The spirit of God reigns supreme.
Traditionally, we as Ghanaians have great respect for our spiritual leaders. Let us compare ourselves to our neighboring countries and see how much God has blessed us.
Let us all desist from insulting and castigating men of God, who are also the spiritual fathers of our time and land.
We are told in Psalm 51 that God will not spurn a humble, contrite heart. Let us therefore in all humility and with the utmost contrition turn away from those who would lead us astray, that God may cause his countenance to shine on us and indeed we shall be blessed in the land of our fathers.
We will as men of God and as the church continue to comment on the need for good, Godly and servant leadership and the importance of morality in the body politic of our country Ghana.
If we fail to do this, then we fail in our God given unction and we cannot fail in our spiritual duty and calling.
We shall continue to comment and give positive suggestions on matters that affect this country, to build Ghana into a true beacon and model for the African continent as God intended.