It was Pastor E.A. Adeboye’s birthday and the 31st anniversary of the monthly Holy Ghost Service of the Redeemed Christian Church of God on March 2. The service is always heavily attended, a part reason for the construction of a three-kilometre-by-three-kilometre auditorium called The Arena. But people who had taken a cue from the 75-hour non-stop praise of the Lord to expect fanfare and cake-cutting during the week arrived the Arena to the usual service, the birthday having been celebrated privately. Pastor Adeboye is not known to put himself in God’s way or share in God’s glory or time. In fact, preachers at the service on March 2, were the youth from four zones of the church.
On the second day, when he preached, the only direct reference to a birthday celebration was a message from the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, delivered by Bishop Wale Oke, who has known Pastor Adeboye from the first day the celebrant taught him mathematics at the University of Lagos, some 40 years ago.
The third day was an anointing service, but the day after there was a thanksgiving service, at the end of which Pastor Adeboye gave thanks.
According to a new book, Stories of Pastor E. A. Adeboye, Bishop Oke it was who on December 24, 1979, around 2p.m. at Abusi Edumare Grammar School, Ijebu Igbo prophesied Pastor Adeboye’s future.
“God spoke to Bishop Francis Wale Oke and gave him a word of prophecy for me. He wrote it down as God told him and he brought it to me,” said Pastor Adeboye. “That was in 1979, so you can imagine how young he must have been then – in his 20s. As soon as I got it and read through it, I knew it was from God. So, I sat down and broke it down into pieces. I noticed 28 promises of God for my future.”
About 75 years ago on Ayesanmi Street in the sleepy town of Ifewara when the little Enoch, Elisha, Sunday, Adejare, Adetona, Olagundoye, Adeboye was born, the Heavens rejoiced over the birth of a great man as we do today.
But no mortal could have predicted that even from the strange occurrence of heavy rain in sunshine that fateful Sunday in 1942. Babies born in such moments are nicknamed ‘the Tiger’, but that gave no hint of a man God would love and use so mightily across the world.
Not even the wise old men in Ifewara who called the slate-carrying, and chalk-white faced little primary school boy “Senior Academician,” and “Baba Eko” in those day saw a Daddy GO.
And not even the prediction of strange man about the boy’s greatness during an encounter on the road to Pa Moses Adeboye’s farm made any clear sense then.
Not when he was born and raised in abject poverty so severe that he had no shoes at 18 years old and had to borrow a pair of trousers and sandals to receive a prize on his school’s prize-giving day.
Perhaps only Mama Esther Adeboye of blessed memory got close to knowing who he was destined to be, as evident in her frequent prayer that Enoch would someday call a person and twenty persons would answer. Today, decades later, he calls a person, and hundreds answer: not only Nigerians, but people in over 196 countries, including those from far-flung Samoa, Fiji, and Papua New Guinea.
God Almighty, who knew him before he was formed some 12 months before a delayed birth in 1942, had seen the great Daddy GO and protected him. Even when he stopped going to church, God told the founder of RCCG, Reverend Josiah Olufemi Akindayomi to look out for him to lead the church he had ridiculed as “Big Name Kill Small God.”
A man, who rather than being the lion he was predicted to be in 1942, is so great, yet so humble, and lives in complete holiness and in total obedience to God.
A man God calls His son, and speaks with regularly.
A man noted for signs, wonders and miracles of the dimensions of the Biblical days. Miracles that as they were some 2,000 years ago, when Jesus Christ lived physically among us on earth, have saved lives of millions of people, and attracted many more to the Lord to receive salvation for eternal life and therefore be saved from condemnation to hell fire.
A man who was not a Born Again Christian until the time he was a mathematics teacher at the University of Lagos, but become the leader of a church with a strong presence in over 196 countries and 32,000 parishes in Nigeria alone, is indeed, a miracle.
For this same man to remain infectiously humble, in spite of his enormous power, influence and popularity is also a miracle in itself.
Bishop Wale Oke’s Message
This is a joyful occasion. Tonight, I am wearing two caps. First I am here to represent the National President of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, Rev. Felix Omobude, who is out of the country. He sent me and the General Secretary, Apostle Nuhu Kure to felicitate with my Father-in-the-Lord, his immediate family, leaders, pastorate and members of The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) Worldwide, on occasion of Daddy GO’s 75th birthday on earth.
The whole of Christendom of Nigeria and the world is celebrating a true icon that God has raised to bless the generation. Actually, people like Daddy GO come raised by God, one in a generation and we are so glad in our generation, he was packaged in Heaven and born in Nigeria and anointed to be GO of RCCG, but the captain of God’s end-time army all over the world.
Even though he is 75-years-old, you can’t tell from his looks because God renews his youth day by day.
For 40 years now, I have watched Daddy minister, I have served under his ministration countless times. When he stands on a platform, something heavy comes on him that makes him so strong, so youthful day by day.
Daddy, many happy returns! The Lord will continue to renew your youth and take you from glory to glory.
Aside from representing PFN, I have been a son to Daddy GO for 40 years since the year I had the fortune and blessing of being taught mathematics by him at the University of Lagos.
During the first lecture he took us, I sat at the back of the class listening to him and I knew within me that “this is a man of God.” I knew it. I was the leader of the University of Lagos Christian Union and immediately after the lecture, I went to him to introduce myself to him and he said, “Follow me.” I did. I followed him to his office and since then I have been following him.
Daddy, many, many happy returns! You are not only a father to members of RCCG, your are a father to millions of us outside RCCG, who have been drinking from the well of life in you by the Holy Spirit and our prayer is that this well will not run dry. This well will be fresh everyday and everyone who partakes of this well will continue to partake of eternal life, eternal joy, eternal peace, blessing and glory. Daddy, by the mercy of God you will finish strong, you will finish well.
Pastor Adeboye Gives Thanks…
I want to thank God once gain for the salvation of my soul. If He had not saved my soul we wouldn’t be all here today. I thank Him for bringing me into the world and I thank him for bringing me into contact with you all.
I thank God for you. God will bless you mightily. I thank you for your love, for your prayers and your gifts.
Anytime the work of the ministry becomes a bit more burdensome; anytime we think of some people God has used us in one way or another to bless, but who turn out to be enemies and we want to feel discouraged, then we remember the tens of thousands of all you who appreciate the grace of God upon our life, then we march on.
Thank God for you, thank God for your encouragement. There are moments when we feel tired of praying, but we remember the thousands of people who are praying for you. Thank you for your prayers. Thank you for your gifts.
Next year, you will be here, strong, healthy, rich and more generous. Thank you very much!
Bisi Daniels is the author of the book, Stories of Pastor Adeboye