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RCCG Ghandi Olaoye

RCCG Pastor Ghandi Olaoye: Managing the unseen red flag  

by Church Times
The announcement on Saturday, September 2 by the government of Oyo State that Pastor Ghandi Olaoye of the Redeemed Christian Church of God is now the Soun of Ogbomoso did not come to many as a surprise; especially those who have been following the story
Olaoye,  Pastor of RCCG Jesus House, Washington DC had thrown his hat in the ring when the stool became vacant following the death of the then Soun of Ogbomosho; Oba Jimoh Oladunni Oyewumi Ajagungbade III in December 2021.
It was clear from day one that the odds were in his favour. The announcement was thus unexpected.


What is however news to many is the morality of his transition from the pulpit to the palace. Many are still at a loss on what could have motivated his move.

In the first place, Olaoye, who pastors a massive parish of the RCCG will have to leave the comfort of his US base to embrace life in the ancient town of Ogbomosho. His sphere of influence no doubt will shrink as the demands of the throne will limit his travels. Ironically, he loves travelling.
Apart from the fact that many modern-day obas now frolic with city life with utter abandon, he may have to make do with some form of isolation at least in the first few months.
Beyond that, he would have to contend with some of the traditional rites except that he would have had a deal with the kingmakers to be spared those rites.
These are just conjectures. The real question for Pastor Olaoye as regards his ascension to the throne is: What is the motivation behind his preference for the throne?
That question will continue to stick out like a sore thumb. He tried to answer the question last year when he insinuated that God wanted him to be king.

Olaoye”: I am just obeying God

He told his church members, “All I am doing is to obey God. Let me tell you this;  if we find out in five years’ time that this church starts to have a crisis. And things start to go down and you find out that the Lord spoke to me and I did not obey him.
“And it becomes like the case of Jonah or Achan, I hope you will not say thank God you did not answer God. You will be angry that God spoke to me and I did not obey. All I am doing is obeying God. This action is not any action of avarice. It is not any action of greediness, It is nothing but obeying God. And this is what I have preached for 30 years. ”
Anybody listening to such words from a pastor of over 30 years will be tongue-tied.
What else do you have to say to a man who claimed to have heard from God? Nobody was there when the Lord allegedly spoke to him and it would be sheer arrogance to say he was lying.
But then, since we are entitled to their views and positions, it won’t be really out of place, to put his claims under a binocular for the purpose of satisfying our curiosity.

Story of Oba Akinyele

There is practically nothing wrong for a Christian and indeed a pastor to aspire to the throne. There have been quite a number of traditional rulers in Nigeria who are strong and tested believers.
The first president of the Christ Apostolic Church, Isaac Akinyele was one time the Olubadan of Ibadan. And he did exceptionally well in his time.
Apostle Moses Oludele Idowu noted in a recent piece: “When Isaac Babalola Akinyele became the Olubadan of Ibadan in 1955 he had been a pastor for 24 years since 1931. He was among the first set of pastors ordained by the British Apostolic Hierarchy in 1931. Yet he was chosen by the kingmakers of Ibadan.”
Just like Pastor Olaoye, Oba Akinyele was already a pastor before he became an Oba. But he was pretty exceptional. His obaship was thus a prototype of what it means to be the light in a dark world.
Apostle Idowu in the piece noted also that Oba Akinyele’s 9 years on the throne brought the biggest developments to the city of Ibadan than it had ever known.
 Idowu, a well-known researcher who had written books on fathers of faith in Nigeria however said Oba Akinyele had clashes with the forces of Traditional Religion.

Wanted to abandon the throne

He noted also that Oba Akinyele on about four occasions tried to throw in the towel, renounce the Olubadan stool, and go back to Church.”
Apart from Oba Akinyele, there have been several other Obas who have done quite well in combining the throne with their faith.
The case of Owa of Ijeshaland, Oba Aromolaran 1 is another classic example espoused in Apostle Idowu’s article. The Oba was already a king when he encountered Christ and decided to renounce traditional religion for Christianity.
There is the classic example of Oba Dapo Tejuosho who has been consistent in his Christian faith for years despite being a traditional king.

Read also: Ghandi Olaoye speaks on ambition: https://churchtimesnigeria.net/olaoye-ghandi-rccg-ogbomoso/

Obas in RCCG

Just at the September 2023 Holy Ghost Night, one  Oba Abdurasheed Abayomi Banjo, the Ologini Ojowo of Ijebu Igbo who introduced himself as Pastor Oba came to testify of how God made him survive one year of his enthronement.
Apparently, he was a pastor in the RCCG before he was selected as an Oba. He narrated how about six of those who were against his enthronement died in succession attributing their death to “God fighting for him”
His testimony was quite outlandish. But the bottom line is that he was a pastor in the RCCG before his enthronement.
So Pastor Olaoye’s transition to the palace from the pulpit is really not out of place. He is not the first person. And won’t be the last that would take such a step.
 Incidentally, the General Overseer of RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye has over the years maintained a robust relationship with traditional rulers in the country. The Obas sit in vantage positions at every holy ghost night service and also at the monthly Thanksgiving Service.

Our concern

What should concern us is the underbelly of Pastor Olaoye’s ambition. While addressing his church last year, he said, 23 people showed interest in the stool but that only two of them were favoured. He said the choice of who to choose lies with the governor of Oyo State, Mr. Seyi Makinde. The implication is that irrespective of the choice of the kingmakers it will still be subject to the approval of the governor.
The question is: Did Pastor Olaoye lobby for the stool or did he allow a natural flow?  At what point did he realise his ministry was in the palace not on the pulpit? Is he aware of the challenges waiting for him at the palace? Has he counted the cost? Does he realise that the US is not Ogbomosho? Having lived most of his adult life outside the country, is he well informed of what is on the ground in Ogbomoso? To what extent does he understand the people he is about to rule?
The questions are many and varied. And they will continue to dodge his path as he ascends the throne.
In years to come, he would have cause to look back and thank God for the decision or regret ever aspiring to the coveted seat. We pray it won’t end on a note of regret in Jesus name. (amen)

Euphoria of kingship

Usually, when it comes to making a destiny decision, the morning may not show the day.
This is so because the euphoria that greets being crowned a king is so much and overwhelming that the dark forces are often subsumed for later-day manifestation.
What we can only do for now is to interrogate the implications of his decision for the Body of Christ and indeed RCCG. In a way, Pastor Olaoye’s decision to leave his flock will affect RCCG’s administrative protocol. This development should serve as a guide in the church’s ordination of pastors in the future
Before ordaining any pastor, it will be good for the church to make further probes and find out if the person will remain a pastor irrespective of any future “call”. If the person claims to have been called, it will be good to ask if God gave the person a caveat when he was called.
Such caveat may be something like, “My son, I am calling you to this ministerial work for now, but your destiny is to become a king or become a president when there is an opening.”

God’s voice not immunity against trouble

Irrespective of what informed Pastor Olaoye’s decision to embrace the throne, the onus lies on the Church to raise its voice and pray for him.
He claimed to have heard from God. It is important to note that, hearing God’s voice and getting direction from him is not immunity against trouble. It was God who asked the children of Israel to step out of Egypt but many of them perished in the wilderness when they failed to follow God’s instruction.
Pastor Olaoye might have indeed heard from God. He needs courage to obey God in his new assignment and not compromise his faith if he wants God to continually back him. It may well be that God will use him mightily to shine the gospel light in Ogbomoso.
By Gbenga Osinaike

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