A SINFUL NATION, A VENGEFUL GOD – DR DONS EZE

God is currently angry with Nigeria. He is angry with many people in the country. God is not happy with Nigeria because of the sinfulness of her people. He is not happy about the atrocities being committed by some Nigerians. He is not happy about the injustices being perpetrated in some high places against the poor or the downtrodden, the denial of their rights, taking away of what belongs to them.

God is not happy about the hypocritic and false life of many Nigerians, who pretend to be religious, and god-fearing. They build gigantic Churches and magnificent Mosques. Every Sunday, all the pews in the Churches are filled to capacity, and on Fridays, all the praying grounds in the Mosques are fully occupied. Yet, the country is stinking, filled with many crimes – bribery and corruption, nepotism, ethnicity, religious bigotry, homosexuality, incest, prostitution, killing of unborn babies, examination malpractice, electoral malpractice, armed robbery, cultism, etc.

God is not happy with Nigeria because we have many false prophets, who prophesy what God did not tell them, but are only interested in fattening their purse or boosting their ego. He is also not happy with Nigeria because many of her people are not patriotic, but selfish, only interested in themselves. It is not only the leaders in Nigeria that are bad, but the led as well, the spiritual and the temporal, the rich and the poor, the mighty and the lowly. There is no exception.

Because of the sinfulness of Nigerians, God is punishing the country, visiting Nigeria with His wrath. That is why He has allowed insecurity to envelope the country, to hold the people of Nigeria to ransom, why He has allowed Boko Haram to continue to mess us up, to terrorize the country.

For the past ten years, we have been battling Boko Haram insurgency, all to no avail. All the resources, all the energies, of the country are being expended in the fight against Boko Haram, yet there appears to be no end in sight.

Thousands of Nigerians are under captivity, held by Boko Haram. Millions of people have made their permanent abode in the many Internally Displaced Camps (IDPs), scattered in different parts of the North East zone of the country. Thousands have been despatched to the world beyond by the terrorists.

Apart from Boko Haram, there are also the murderous Fulani herdsmen and other bandits that kill, maim, kidnap, burn down houses, destroy farmlands and make life very miserable for the people. Nigerians now live in fear, traumatized, uncertain of their lives and property, not being sure of what would happen to them the next moment.

In the same vein, poverty has pervaded the entire country. Nigeria is now the world capital of poverty. Millions of people are poverty-stricken, malnourished. Not because the country lacks resources, human and natural. These are in abundance, only that the system is not working, malfunctioning, working in a zigzag way, in negative direction, in reverse gear.

Many people in the country now find it difficult to eke out a living. The cost of living has soared. There is unemployment. Millions of youths are unemployed. They roam the streets in search of nonexistent jobs. In desperation, many of them have joined bad gangs, or engaged in illicit acts – internet scam, yahoo yahoo, kidnapping, armed robbery, prostitution, etc.

Nigeria is now in the wilderness, abandoned, lonely. She is no longer the darling of many countries in the world. She has been categorized as a terrorist country. The United States of America has slammed visa restrictions on her citizens. The countries of European Union are considering taking the same action.

In the past, because of the sinfulness of the people of Israel, God always punished them and allowed them to pass through some wicked kings, Ahab, Nebuchadnezzar. Sometimes, they would be carried away to exile. The people would suffer and agonize. But each time they realized their folly through their prophets, they would make amend, repent and seek the face of God. As a loving and forgiving Father, God always forgave them, showed them His mercy and brought prosperity back to their lives.

Likewise, all that we now suffer in the country – insecurity, religious crisis, economic hardship, bad leadership, political instability, electoral fraud, etc., is because God has abandoned us, God is punishing us, because of our iniquities, our sinfulness. God is not happy with us because of the many sins we have committed and still committing.

But God will forgive us if we convict ourselves of our sinfulness, show remorse, make genuine repentance, make amends, and come out of our evil ways. He is a merciful, loving and forgiving Father, He will forgive us our sins if we make genuine amend. God does not want the death of a sinner, rather, that the sinner should come to repentance, turn away from his evil ways and come back to Him. God wants a sinner to repent of his sins and begin to lead a good life.

Coincidentally, the two major religions in the country, Christianity and Islam, will now be observing their penitential seasons. The Christian season of Lent, the forty days of prayer, almsgiving and fasting, is starting today, Ash Wednesday; while the Muslims will also, any time from now, as soon as a new moon is sighted, be going into the holy month of Ramadan, the month of fasting and prayer.

It is therefore an opportunity for all Nigerians, the big and the small, the young and the old, the leader and the led, everybody, to begin to pray to God for mea culpa, to have mercy, ask for forgiveness for the many sins they have committed, turn away from the evil ways they had lived, seek the face of God, their Creator, and begin to lead a new life, the life of holiness.

If we are genuine and honest, God is a loving and forgiving Father, He will forgive us our sins and do away with the current problems we are passing through, and return us to the path of rectitude. He will do away with Boko Haram, with general insecurity in the country, with poverty that is ravaging us in the midst of plenty, with bad political leadership. And Nigeria will return to its past glory.

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