REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, PROF. YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, GCON, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA AT THE NATIONAL PRAYER BREAKFAST EVENT THEMED: THE BIRTH OF A NEW NATION, AT NAF CONFERENCE CENTRE, KADO, ABUJ.
I bless the name of the Lord for this prayer breakfast meeting dedicated to the prophetic birthing of a new nation. And I thank the organizers the Coalition of Intercessors, and the Christian Association of Nigeria, and in particular, our leader and father of the Nigerian Prays Movement, General Yakubu Gowon, for the kind invitation and for his continuous commitment and dedication to this nation from his youth, when he was Head of State when he led the fight to keep Nigeria one, to his later years as an elder statesman where his well-seasoned words uttered in Godly wisdom have counseled our nation’s leaders for decades.
The theme of this prayer breakfast “The Birth of a New Nation”, is an important one. It comes at a time of great travail and tribulation for the nation. In the throes of a pandemic for well over a year, leading to a severe economic downturn, loss of jobs and livelihoods, and as we climbed out of the recession, we have been faced with an unprecedented scale of insecurity, in different zones of the nation. But for us who are gathered here today, children of God, we see the invisible we know that every time that a nation where the children of God live is challenged, it is God’s call to His people to take action, it is an opportunity for God to demonstrate that He is God over the Nations, that He is the creator of the heavens and the earth, that He knows the beginning from the end.
But God also wants us to know that He has ordained us to speak concerning the things that we want to see. Most of us are familiar with the scripture in Jeremiah 1:9-10:
“9 Then the LORD put forth His hand and touched my mouth, and the LORD said to me: “Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. See, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out and to pull down, to destroy and to throw down, to build and to plant.”
Everywhere you look in scripture, the destiny of nations is in the hands of his children from Zerubbabel to Nehemiah, we see ordinary men and women building nations at the direction of God and by prophetic action.
Permit me to ground my remarks in a particular story in 2 Kings 2:19-22:
“19 Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Please notice, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord sees; but the water is bad, and the ground barren.” 20 And he said, “Bring me a new bowl and put salt in it.” So, they brought it to him. 21 Then he went out to the source of the water, and cast in the salt there, and said, “Thus says the LORD: ‘I have healed this water; from it, there shall be no more death or barrenness” 22. So, the water remains healed to this day, according to the word of Elisha which he spoke.”
So, scripture has consistently shown us that children of God are central to the birth of a new nation, the rebirth of Nations. They must desire the change, they must cry to God, be ready to make the sacrifice of repentance
In this story, the men of the city told the prophet of God Elisha – see this our city is a nice, pleasant prosperous place, but we cannot enjoy this our community because the water is bad, life is unsafe, and the ground is barren. They did not go to an expert on environmental disasters or politicians, they went to God. God directed His prophet who asked for a fresh, new bowl, put salt in it and went to the source of the water, the root of the problem, and poured in the salt, and God spoke. I have healed this water; from it, there shall be no more death or barrenness, and so it shall be for our nation in Jesus’ name.
Let us unpack some aspects of the story, salt is crucial to the birth of a new nation. Matthew 5:13 – “You are the salt of the earth.” So, the salt is actually the children of God. As far as God is concerned, the responsibility for birthing the nation belongs to those who are called by His name which is why He said in 2 Chronicles 7:14:
“If my people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
The word of God does not agree with logic or with our thinking. God is saying here that it is not the nation that repents. It is His own people who are called upon to repent and turn from their evil ways.
As we are the salt, we are also the light. The light ends the darkness, it marks the end of the night of weeping and marks the glorious sunlight of the morning of joy.
The pouring of the salt into the source of the water, the source of the problem is the prophetic act we perform today. We the salt are also poured today by prayer and prophecy into the source of our nation’s problems.
As we pray and prophecy, a new nation will be birthed, one where like the city to which Elisha went, the land was healed, the people prospered and peace and joy prevailed.
I speak these words also to our nation, “Thus says the LORD: ‘I have healed this water; from it, there shall be no more death or barrenness.’
And after the healing of the land, we are told in verse 22, that the water remains healed to this day, according to the word of Elisha which he spoke. We say the same words for our nation as well that there is a birthing of a new nation, and the nation has already been birthed. There is no question about it.
The way God reveals things depending on who it is can be in pictures, forms or visions. From my bedroom, I can see Aso Rock clearly, but there are times when it is completely covered by clouds, such that if I open my window, I cannot see it at all. As a matter of fact, if I had come into that room on a day when I didn’t know that the rock was there, I would have assumed that there was no rock, big as the rock is.
That metaphor is the same for our nation; the new nation is birthed already but covered by a cloud, but the cloud will clear and God Almighty will take all of the glory for the birthing of this nation.
Thank you very much, God bless you.