How my dad started Christian interdenominational gathering in Lagos -Bishop Adedipe
Bishop Moses Adebayo Adedipe is a man of many parts and has global vision for prophetic and biblical impartation to the nations. His ministry focuses on empowering believers around the world for the c of God’s kingdom on earth. The presiding Bishop and General Superintendent of The Universal Christian Mission international (TUCMI), also, Oversee, UK World Evangelism Trust and Presides over, Moshelen Cares (NGO), The Universal Christian Bible College (TUCBC) and chairman, Governing Council, Moshelen High School. He is married to Rev. Helen Adedipe, his wife of 48 years and they are blessed with children and grandchildren.
PROVIDENCE News met him and in this encounter, he gladly shared his background with us and speaks on sundry issues affecting Christianity and Nigerian society.
Tell us about yourself?
I was born 71 years ago into a Christian home, to the lineage of late Apostle Joseph Babalola Rotimi, the founder of Christ Apostolic Church (CAC) who was my uncle. My mum was one of the four sisters of Apostle Babalola and my father, late Primate Robert Adeyanju Adedipe was one of the foundations pastor in Christ Apostolic Church (CAC) when it began. Joseph Babalola was the only male child of the family and his siblings are females, as the Lord would have it, each of the four early pastors decided to pick Babalola sisters as wives and my mum was one of them. Being among the first set of pastors, apart from Babalola, my dad was a unique person, he hears clearly from God and this was acknowledged among other pastors. He was always on transfer, either to pioneer or strengthened churches.
Due to his ability in biblical education, training of students and pastors in CAC, my dad was nominated in 1956, to go to England and learn more about the work of God. He got to the school in England and was admitted as a student, within few weeks, the school rector discovered what God had deposited in him and told him, young man, we would be calling you “Mr. Ability” and from today you are no longer a student, but a lecturer in our college. That was how my dad became a lecturer in the school and spent more than three years and he was advised to go back to his country and continue to impact what God had deposited in him.
It is a good thing and thank God, I am from that lineage; with my father as one of the pioneer pastors in CAC and my mother, younger sister to late Joseph Babalola and being the closest to my parents among the seven of us children. I am privileged to have express access into the kingdom of God and developed to this level by His grace. The work is progressing and I am looking forward to be of more knowledge in the power of His glory.
How was your growing up like?
The incessant regular transfer would have affected us the children, especially me. I was always following them from one station to another. But as God would have it, He has given us the pleasure. The advantage we had as children at that time was because my dad was in charge of the church, the schools and the clinics. So each time we are moving to another place, we have direct access to the schools.
Describe your new birth experience?
It was memorable. On 15 of July, 1961, while in the room playing my accordion singing and thanking God. The Lord visited me and said, “Moses, all you have in your head about your relationship with My ambassadors here and there cannot take you anywhere. If you die today, that is the end of you except you surrender your life to Me directly”. With that I heard, I busted crying and praying, pleading with God to accept me the way I was and forgive my short comings. That very day I gave my life to Christ and since then I have been with the Lord, moving around working for Him progressively.
How did the ministry started?
We were at Abeokuta in April, 1964, when the Lord spoke to my dad, saying, “You are in a denominational ministry, I want to send you to the world, the universal. That was the first time the word, “universal” came. If you are still in CAC you will be restricted, resign and start a new movement, whereby you will embrace and bring all denominations together”. Then he prayed and we prayed with him. He resigned and we came back to Lagos, since then we have been in Lagos where he started with the Bible College in 1964. My dad was specially gifted and he teaches with authority and power, he facilitated the establishment of education and the first bible training school in CAC, he started from our home town in Oye Ekiti. We were floating as a small fellowship then and visited various churches fostering the unity in the body of Christ and that was the first time Baptist, Methodist and Anglican would sit and pray together. Those that came to the meeting came with their workers. By the grace of God, my dad was used of God to start interdenominational Christians gathering in Lagos in 1964.
Tell us about Universal Christian Ministry
My father founded and started this ministry through the Universal Christian Fellowship. People were coming for training and after their training; we send them back to their various churches. After his transition to glory in 1983 there was silent of this ministry for five years, between 1983 and 1988 as a result of leadership vacuum, because there was no person to take over the leadership mantle immediately he passed-on, most of the people he trained had gone back to their ministries and none was ready to come around and be running the ministry along their own. It was in November, 1988 the ministry was resuscitated by my immediate family and some friends after the Lord spoke to me, saying, “Son, I handed over the mantle of leadership to you, to lift this ministry and add the church planting with the clear cut mandate of 20 million souls”. The mandate was to reach the world through His word and to raise people for His kingdom. Since then, the Lord have been helping us going out for evangelism and raising people for His kingdom. The bible college is still going on and the church also in place. We have raised the first set of pastors and placed them in places for the work of the ministry.
How would you describe your preparation?
I attended the same Bible College of this ministry and was ordained in April, 1972 when my father was alive. I got married same year in November and got my first brand new car. Three major things happened to me in 1972 that, I cannot forget; the Lord gave me an apostolic and prophetic ministry, I got married and got my first car. Since then, God have been helping me to raise people from all parts of life.
Through the gospel I have visited many places around the world and the Bible College my dad attended in England. I was well received, taking to their archive and shown my dad’s record.
How far has the Ministry Gone?
The ministry has gone far and we are able to take the gospel the globe, including Asian countries. The first time I visited Japan in year 2001, I spent a month because I learnt; Christianity was nothing to write home about in that country. Christianity enter Yokohama in Japan, 120 years ago and among the 120 million population only 0.5 percent gave their lives to Christ and I told God to take me to Japan for evangelism. We have one our pastors trained here but lived there and there was a conference coming up there, he contacted me so that I can attend. That was how God answered my prayer. I left to Japan to attend the conference and heard that many pastors have entered Japan to preach but they did not listen to them. One of my hosts took me to some places and God gave me three specific instructions to do, I must go to (1) feeder roads (every home on earth has a feeder road you must pass), (2) highway and (3) stream or river with many corners in Japan to make some prophetic unction that will bring unprecedented visitation of God to the land and I did that.
How do we differentiate between genuine and fake pastors?
The Bible is clear on this. Peter asked Jesus how we shall know the genuine pastors and Jesus answered, by their fruits you shall know them and it is still the same today.
There is nothing new under the heaven and because Satan knows his time will soon be over, he is breeding his own pastors and bishops that is why we have fake pastors around.
Today we have pastors and bishops without a church or congregation ordained in hotels and club houses. Meanwhile pastors and bishops are supposed to be ordained and commissioned by a church. In those days it was servant hood, but today nobody wants to be a servant or be baked at all. They have proliferated pastoral calling with everyone establishing a church and want to be addressed, General Overseer (G.O). They are not disciple and disciplined, because they committed an offence and wanted to be discipline, they think that will destroy their ego, within that period they seek advise that suit them with people who sympathize their rebel-ambition. Most churches today are not pioneered by God. They are product of rebellion, indiscipline and lack of mentoring. That is why when a pastor misbehaves; ask him, where is he coming from? Who disciple or mentored him and apart from God, who is he accountable to? If he has no answer or reference, that is a rebel pastor and fake minister.
Where is the place of mentorship and discipleship in the church?
Devil created confusion in the church and many pastors are falling into it. They believe crowd determine disciples and membership the same as mentoring. In the place of mentorship you don’t gathered crowd because you may not make disciple out of them.
Pastors want crowd, but are not ready to make disciples and you don’t need the crowd to make disciples. God is not interested in the crowd, because crowd does not move Him, He is more interested in how many disciple you make. The church needs to disciple people and this is the time for the church to be where disciples are made and not where the crowds are gathered.
How would you describe the present state of Nigerian Church?
The Nigerian church has missed it. Dirty politics have crept into the church and played openly. Compromising spirit, corruptible practices, injustice syndrome and nepotism attitude the bible speaks against have been brought from the circular world into the church practice and this is causing catastrophic situation in Christendom. The church supposed to affect and impact the society, but the church have been infected and polluted by the society.
Churches have allowed entertainment in the name of programmes and misplace priority of sound teaching and kingdom reality. Music and drama ministries cannot be neglected; they are for spiritual and soul lifting, but are not take the place of the Word. Though, the church seems to have lost it. But, there is hope, if only the body will take appropriate steps. Emphatically, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) can do it, but it harbors fear of the blogs and each of the blog want to play safe. They don’t want people to be against them. So everyone is playing safe at the expense of entrenching Christian values. Also, CAN cannot do it, except God choose to use CAN as a body. The only body that would have been of good use to do it is Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN), at the same time; they are full of ego, selfishness and arrogance. If they are willing to be more humble and accommodating, they will be of godly use. Also, there should be a regulating body for the church in Nigeria. One of the major problems of the church is lack of a regulating body. Everyone go to Abuja to get government license, not bad to fulfill all righteousness and the law of the land, but we must consider God is God of orderliness.
PFN can form a separate regulating body in Nigeria. If the constitution permits them, they should be empowered to maintain orderliness and discipline among their members.
How do we eradicate controversies from the Church?
Let the church be the church. Many pastor use deception to receive what they called calling. And some allow ego with pride to control them. Self, pride, arrogant had crept into the church and is building castles on earth. Though, we have pastors who are not corrupt or among those corrupting the word of God, this group held on to their areas of calling, they teach and preach undiluted word of God without fear or favour.
Pastors must live exemplary lifestyle and not given to extravagance or materialistic. Unfortunately, most men of God today don’t live what they preach, they live at the expense of people’s salvation and living by example goes with humility. Also, the issue of man’s doctrines, church tradition and human laws above the Bible doctrine should be eradicated.
What is your opinion on insurgency in Nigeria?
It is deception and irresponsible to say foreigners are the one attacking us when we have the armed forces and other security apparatus to protect the land.
Why should religion be overlapping another in a known circular country as ours? The church has kept quiet for too long. Where was the church when Nigeria was registered as member of the OIC by Ibrahim Babagida, where were the Christians activists, all the bishops, the G.Os and sound lawyers in our churches. Military men are in our churches, why did we have them as Christians and church members? We carried the power of God and not guns, we are not fighters with gun, and can’t the church sit as one to genuinely plan how this nation can move forward? We called Nigeria giant of Africa, where is the giant? And Christians as light and salt, why then darkness and bitterness rule everywhere?
What is your take on human development?
We should imbibe the spirit of transferring the mind of Christ in us to others. That is mentoring. Mentoring is very important. Don’t wait until you are appointed or elected into an office before you mentor people, you may not be there and still mentor someone who will be there. When you mentor people, they will mentor others. Same to heads of the ministry, you don’t hoard the gift of God in your life, discern the gift upon others and imbibe the spirit of taking people ahead of where you met them. If we can transfer the gift God had deposited on us onto others that makes us a good leader.
How do you relax?
I listen to soul lifting and inspiring gospel music, read and study; and be with my family.