Reformation in Nigeria
The recent troubles in Nigeria should not cloud the world’s eyes to the wonderful work of the gospel in the country, according to Pastor Obialor Umozurike of Trinity Reformed Baptist Fellowship, Umuahia.
Pastor Umozurike came to faith in 1983, at 12 years old, in a gathering of high school students led by the Pentecostal Light of the World Evangelical Ministry.
In 1992, he came into fellowship with the Nigerian Baptist Conventions and was baptised. He said, ‘While still a member of the Nigerian Baptist Convention, I felt moved by the Holy Spirit to pioneer an independent fellowship, which I named the Metropolitan Tabernacle in admiration of C. H. Spurgeon.
‘In 1993, I wrote to Dr Peter Masters for literature to aid my study and sermon preparation. I received a letter of encouragement together with a complimentary copy of the Sword and Trowel. By 1996, God brought me into contact with a free theological library, owned by Sylvester Edie, a newly converted Charismatic. There I explored the reformed faith and became convinced by it’.
Obialor left Lagos for Umuahia, in Abia, where he has lived since January 2006. It has a predominantly Ibo population, most of whom are nominally Christian with strong Charismatic leanings.
Pastor Umozurike said, ‘It is encouraging that the city is peopled with a great percentage of educated people who can read and write the English language at various degrees of competence. This is the city where I am called to plant the Reformed faith, the providence of God having annihilated the language barrier!’
On the first Sunday in March 2009, the fellowship, now known as the Trinity Reformed Baptist Fellowship, was started, with 22 adults and 11 children.
He added, ‘The prospect before the Reformed Baptist movement in Umuahia is high. Most people in Umuahia are deeply interested in the things of the Lord. Attendance at supposedly Christian places of worship is still on the high side. Our most formidable obstacle is the Charismatic movement, with their pragmatic church growth techniques, such as pretended clairvoyant powers, false signs and wonders, and “contemporary worship”.’
There have been many converts, including a 12-year-old girl. Preaching opportunities are growing, including in nearly all the government departments in the city.