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Pastor T. B. Joshua: A Friend Of The Poor By Bayo Oluwasanmi

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Death is a necessary and natural rite of passage – a transaction. For the Christian faithful, death is also a vindication for resurrection to be true.

As I watched the funeral of Pastor T.B. Joshua on TV and seeing the mammoth crowd that accompanied him to his final resting place, no doubt the mist was broken, the sunlight came, Joshua breathed the free air of the mountains of God on his way to his maker.

Whether or not you agree with his theology, you must admit that it was a living reality to him and not a dead abstraction. Since his demise, the multitude of the poor gather daily at the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) to mourn their beloved pastor and friend. With torrential lamentations and uncontrollable cries, they remember the good deeds Joshua had done to them. 

In what was believed to be his last sermon, Joshua humbly begged his congregants and friends not to come for his 58th birthday that was few days away before he died. Like he knew his time was up, Joshua seemed to be saying that he was at peace and that he had no fear of what is to come, because the same God who kept him in life will keep him in death.

Joshua was an inspirational pastor and servant. He was the kind of a preacher who cleared the debris from the run-way so that others could take off. He was a pastor who made even lame ducks believe they could fly. The rainbow crowd – people of all nations and from all walks of life – especially the multitude of the poor – his main constituency who had seen and experienced his care, love, compassion, kindness, and generosity, came to the funeral to bid him farewell.

To the poor, Joshua was the most caring and wonderful pastor and friend. He was the best pastor they have ever had. He spoke with a fluency and efficacy. He addressed multiple audiences with a clarity and confidence that many admired and envied. Many will remember Joshua for his warmth, his smile, his sense of humor. Others, in particular the poor, will recall his compassion, his ready willingness to give, his assistance, his contagious love and animation. Yet, others will remember him as a powerful preacher and his public witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ to transform lives and culture. 

The many phases of his ministry and career speak to a life well lived serving Christ, the Church, and the poor. He leaves us with a reminder of God as “The faithful One” who is “marvelous, mysterious and majestic in all that He does.” Joshua had impacted millions of people all over the world. Joshua was gracious and kind. He could be gentle but forceful when an intervention was needed. He was not afraid to tell the truth.

Above all, he lived by the saying that “Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.”

Pastor T.B. Joshua farewell. Rest In Peace.

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