Dearly Beloved,


“This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Woe to the shepherds of Israel who only take care of themselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? ...I am against the shepherds and will hold them accountable for my flock. I will remove them from tending the flock so that the shepherds can no longer feed themselves. I will rescue my flock from their mouths, and it will no longer be food for them” (Ezekiel 34:2, 10 NIV).

Tragedy occurred last week in many centres where the Nigerian Immigrations Service was recruiting new officers as almost twenty (20) people died and many other people were seriously injured in stampedes as millions of unemployed youth struggled to participate in the recruiting exercise. This was after each of these unemployed youth had been made to pay one thousand naira. Here is an exercise that is meant to recruit less than five thousand (5000) people and it is certain that in a corrupt country like Nigeria, the influential people in and out of government have known their own people that would be eventually recruited. Ironically, a member of the so-called national conference that was handpicked and inaugurated recently will be paid four (4) million naira each per month for three months in a country that finds it difficult to pay eighteen thousand naira (N18,000) as minimum wage to its workers and most people are living in abject poverty. Most, if not all, of the members of this confab are already established well-to-do personalities. So, the rich in the country are getting richer while the poor are getting poorer. Unfortunately, most of the people in government are encouraging and even greatly involved in these corrupt practices. Being in government has become a way of enriching oneself. It is a pity that the people that God graciously entrusts the care of the Nigerian people are the same one that are ravaging them. 

The people of Israel in the Bible also had similar experiences. Their leaders, referred to in many instances as shepherds, exploited them to the extent that God pronounced woes on these leaders and held them accountable for their callous acts against the people they were leading (see Isaiah 56:11; Jeremiah 10:21; 12:10; 23:1-4; 25:34-36; 50:6; Ezekiel 34:1-10; Zechariah 10:3).

One may be blaming the people at the helm of affairs of corrupt nations like Nigeria for the rottenness in the system of governance. They are indeed to be blamed, and God will hold them accountable for the suffering of the masses in spite of the surplus of most of these nations. However, anyone who is in any position of leadership will be held accountable for the misery of the people he/she is leading. Those people in government will be held accountable. You also in your little corner of leadership will be held accountable.

In His service,

Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).

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