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Abuja Area chairman charges believers to look unto Jesus amidst wanton killings, others



By Chinaka Okeke

The Area Chairman,  Scripture Union (Nigeria) Abuja Chapter,  Engr. Chigbo Nwafor Sunday, has urged believers in Christ to continue to look unto Jesus in the midst  of the wanton killings,  kidnapping, banditry amongst others ravaging the country and the world in general.

He spoke in his welcome during the 2022 Easter Pilgrims’ conference holding at JC Best International School , Life Camp Abuja.

He said,” we are kept by the power of God through all the issues confronting our world both locally and internationally.  The local issues of insurgency,  banditry,  kidnapping,  and wanton killings of lives and property.  At the international domain , the Russia invasion of Ukraine sparks off fears of 3rd world war. Many nations of the world are aligning with their perceived supper powers.

“In the midst of these , we have to live our Christian lives and run with patience the race that is set before us. Since this race is set with all the environmental and social factors , we have a directive as Scripture Union in Nigeria to keep “looking Unto Jesus,  the author and the finisher of our faith” (Hebrew 12:2). If we must run successfully to the end , we must look unto Jesus who also endured the cross in order to enter the joy that was set before him,” he said.

According to the Area Chairman,  we are in a the Scriptures called perilous time when situations and environments wherein a Christian lives , make it difficult and unbearable for the Christians to live and conduct his business.  

He said to this end we have come for set apart in this 2022 Easter Pilgrims and mission awareness Retreat where we need a fresh encounter for a more fruitful and fulfilling walk with God.

“With this expectation,  I welcome you to this year’s Easter Pilgrims Conference and Mission awareness,  and sincerely pray that God will help us to find Him as we sit down in this meeting . The fresh discovery of God in this camp will indeed help us to run the set race patiently.  We hope to rise from this meeting to shine in the midst of darkness and gross darkness that seem to cover the earth as instructed in Isaiah 60:1-3,” he said .

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(Sermon by Archbishop Daniel Okoh, President of Christian Association of Nigeria, at the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols held at the Bouquet Hall of the State House, Abuja on Tuesday, December 19, 2023)


  1. I am delighted to be part of this Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols and I wish to express my gratitude to His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu (GCFR) and his dear wife, the First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, for giving my wife (a musicologist) and I the opportunity to not only listen to good music but to sing along with the brethren to the glory of the newborn King and to share the word of God with this distinguished audience this evening.
  2. Sisters and Brothers, this Christmas is special to us in Nigeria in the sense that it is the first Christmas Celebration after the General elections that saw the emergence of the Distinguished Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu (GCFR) as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the affirmation of his election victory by the Supreme Court of Nigeria. Congratulations, once again, Your Excellency. It is the Christmas that many Nigerians are looking up with renewed hope that things will get better. And I pray that things will certainly get better in the name of Jesus Christ. Immanuel in Nigeria, the hope of glory.
  3. I would like to use this opportunity to appreciate our dear President, His Excellency, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, for his sensitivity to the diverse nature of our nation and for demonstrating commitment to foster a sense of inclusiveness in governance in these few months he assumed the leadership of Nigeria. May God Almighty prosper his efforts at making peace and prioritizing security in our nation. In his tenure, Nigeria will flourish again.
  4. Brethren, General Elections that were keenly contested this year have come and gone; and we now have a sitting President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It can only be one President at a time. There is a need for a genuine reconciliation among individuals, families, groups, and communities to join forces to address our common challenges as a nation. The season of celebration of the birth of the Prince of Peace, who is the word made flesh, affords us, as children of God, a golden opportunity to reflect on the length that the Almighty God went to reconcile Himself with depraved and estranged humanity.(Ephesians 2:15-18). According to the abundance of His grace, He left the comfortable, heavenly places and came into the hopeless, broken world like a baby in a very poor, lowly, and humble condition (Luke 2:7) to dwell among us  (John 1:14) so that He will redeem us, the condemned, and restore the erstwhile communion with humans. (Romans 5:11).
  5. On the night that Jesus was born, the heavenly hosts filled the air with their joyful song:

“Glory to God in the highest, on earth peace, goodwill toward men” (Luke 2:14).

They were announcing and celebrating the Peace that Jesus brought to the world at His birth. Apostle Paul went on to say of this Good News,

“All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation”. (2 Corinthians 5:18 & 19). In this passage, we were told that Christ forgave our sins while we were sinners and enemies of God. He showed us His love and drew us closer to Himself and also involved us in giving leadership to reconciliation among individuals and communities. All believers therefore should be the Champions of reconciliation and not Champions of crisis and division.

The works of Reconciliation were completed on the cross of Calvary by Jesus more than 2000 years and He has since given us the Message of Reconciliation. This is the time to let go of all bitterness and forgive one another as Christ forgave us so that we may experience genuine peace with one another and enjoy peace in our communities. Learning from the Prince of Peace, we must love our enemies! Jesus says, “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your friends, hate your enemies’. But now I tell you: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34). It is instructive to note that Jesus loved us while we were sinners and came to reconcile us with God. The Celebration of Christmas should not be with only our friends but must be a time that we go the extra mile to personally forgive and overlook offenses to make reconciliation with our enemies.

The truth is that reconciliation is not complete until one reconciles with all. In the spirit of Christmas, therefore, I urge every one of us to take the first bold step, bear the burden of peace, and reach out to our enemies with the message of reconciliation. This is not the time to pull others down but a time to build, encourage, and grow. Therefore, let us rally around our leaders and offer our support so that the peace that will ensure growth and development will come. Nigeria is blessed with an abundance of gifted persons; let everyone look out for opportunities to serve and make one’s humble contribution to make Nigeria great again. The approach of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to his political opponents after his election and inauguration is quite commendable.

He continues to reach out across boundaries to every Nigerian to work together for a better Nigeria. So far, His Excellency, President Tinubu and his dear wife, Distinguished Senator Oluremi Tinubu, have shown that they are truly fathers and mothers of the nation. Your magnanimity shall be rewarded. Dear Brethren, I urge you to, in the spirit of Christmas, pause and check: Who do you need to rebuild a broken relationship with this Christmas? Be bold to lead in settling your relationship with people this season and you will be glad you did. Peace among individuals, families, and communities will foster sustainable development.

  • In this your first Christmas in office, Your Excellency, the Christian Community in Nigeria come to you with the love of God to pray for your success in your mission to move Nigeria from the present pitiable state to an enviable state of prosperity. You have extended a hand of fellowship to us and we embrace you and your family with the love of Christ and promise to partner with you in nation building for the task is quite daunting. You will not stumble and you will not fall. In your time, all Nigerians who emigrated from Nigeria in search of greener pastures shall return with joy and their mouths shall be filled with laughter and their tongue with singing like the people of old Israel who returned from exile. (Psalm 126:1 & 2).
  • Finally, I urge all of us to keep trusting God and believing the assurances of the presence of God with us  – Immanuel – for our hope is sure when we trust in Him. He will protect us when we take refuge in Him. (Proverbs 30:5). As we celebrate, let us remember those who are on the margins of society  – the poor, the hungry, the homeless, and those who are wounded emotionally, physically, and spiritually so that they can rejoice as well.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Wonderful New Year!

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