It’s certain that the controversial On-Air-Personality and Leader of the Free Nation in-Christ Online Church, Cool FM’s Daddy Freeze, is not yet done with Nigeria’s Pentecostal pastors. In this no-holds-barred interview, Freeze wants the ‘men of God’ to come out clear and confess all the lies they had told their congregations just to get money out of them, in addition to Bishop Mike Okonkwo’s recent confession. Tai Anyanwu reports
You really don’t need any introduction; but all the same, tell us something about yourself for those who might not know you
My name is Ifedayo Olarinde. I am a radio presenter, a sociologist by training and the convener of Free The Sheeple Movement and Leader of Free Nation in Christ Online Church.
Interesting; what is your movement out to achieve
I wouldn’t say it is out to achieve because we set out what we wanted to do in mind which is to correct the false doctrines that have been propagated under the name of Christianity. These doctrines have been enslaving, they have been painful, they have been manipulating and they have left us poorer and dormant. So, it is high time somebody stood up, corrected and helped people unlearn the lies; and relearn the truth. That is what we stand for.
Tell us about your growing up and what probably informed why you are who you are today?
I was born in Romania in Europe. In fact, I came to Nigeria when I was three years old; had my primary, secondary and university education here.
Today, you are a celebrated broadcaster. Tell us about your life and challenges as an On-Air Personality.
Hmmm…if you say so.
Yes, I say so…
On-Air-Personality life is generally quite easy, we are playing with the talk and whether we like it or not, we have to add value to the system because when you are talking what you are saying has to impact lives. I have been a broadcaster for 22 years now. I started when I was 19 years old, and I am 42 this year. So it is been a lifetime. It can be more like 22 years now because it’s all I have done all my life.
How would your assess private radio and television operations within the context of the contribution of electronic media to the nation’s development?
It is crucial; because before every Mallam had a tin and a kettle. But these days every Mallam has a radio. You cannot over-estimate the power of the media especially the radio in a period such as this. It will be disastrous to those who opt to do that.
What are the challenges faced by private electronic media operators in Nigeria?
Lots of challenges; multiple-taxation, you know the regular challenges of running a business in Nigeria; not getting support and unnecessary bills. In Nigeria, you know, a radio station has to run with electricity. It is not like a nightclub where you can switch off power during the day and have it on at night. A radio station has to be within 24 hours of the day. So it is very challenging to run. That much I can tell you. And it’s one of the reasons why I have not gone private myself because it is not something you can run on a low budget. You got to have a proper budget to run things properly.
Is there anything government can do to make it easier for private electronic media owners, for greater effectiveness?
It is to remove the multiple-taxations. That will really help. Cutting it down will really help.
Recently, you started this controversy that paying tithe is a sin and not biblical. What informed your war against tithing?
I have been preaching on the radio since Dan Forster left Cool FM and there was nobody to do Praise Jam. I found myself doing the show as part of my responsibilities; I was just thrown there. Luckily for me, I studied the Bible a bit more. So I just used to go there and tell them what I learn from the church. Sometimes, I listen to my pastor’s message on Sunday then mix it a bit and next Sunday will be the previous message. Or I listen to few other pastors and join their messages together you know; and it was fun. It was nice, it was inspiring, and I had a crowd following me initially.
But after a while, it wasn’t adding up for me. There were so many things that were not adding up in the Bible with regard to so many of the things they were preaching. They couldn’t be basically backed, and the more I studied the Bible the more I got a revelation about the Bible before I realised I will mix everything in my own version.
Now because I was on the radio as a gospel presenter on the weekend, I had access to “many men of God” or houses of worship. I also saw a lot of human hypocrisy in these houses of worship. I saw the fact that they will say one thing and do the other or they will cherry-pick. This is their biggest problem. Nigerian pastors are not pastors, they are cherry pickers. They have a cherry farm; they work very well, they know how to pick cherries. So they will sit down, they will cherry-pick the doctrine, twist it to the left, twist it to the right and come up with what they have and it wasn’t adding up for me.
I started little by little trying to challenge. I said: ‘come, guys, we know these things are not the way you people are saying it.’ Then they all came to attack me. Then I decided that it is not about us sitting down. Let’s go into full flare scriptural back-up. Let’s show if you people believe that you know what you are doing, bring your biblical support, bring your historical support, bring everything the way it is and I will also submit my piece. I made a claim. I said paying tithe is not scriptural for Christians. Then they all attacked me.
After a while, they started creeping out of their little holes and saying eh you cannot. You saw the (Pastor) Adeboye video late last year where he said it’s a curse if you don’t bring tithe. Then another one said it is not a curse but a must.’ Then another one said you shouldn’t even pay at all. I was like this is not Christianity versus Islam oooo. It’s not even Catholic versus Anglican; this is Pentecostals versus Pentecostals. You guys obviously don’t really know what you are doing. I said ok I will teach you guys what the Bible is saying.
The Bible is clear, tithing is of the law.
If you read Mathew 22:23, Jesus described it; he was talking to the Scribes and the Pharisees who were the teachers of the religious law. He said: ‘Oh ye Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites; you tithe on your meals, on your incomes and your earnings, but you neglect the weightier matters of the law. Yet you still bribe.’
Some people try to defend that Jesus said we should tithe. No, he was talking to the Scribes and the Pharisees. The entire Galatians chapter two, Galatians chapter three, Galatian chapter 5:1-4, Hebrew 7:18 all nullify the law. Hebrew 7:18 describes the law as unprofitable and useless. So, if the teaching of Jesus was truly the book of Galatians chapter two has made it very clearly. Before Christ came, the law was our guardian. But now that Christ has come, we have a better covenant and that covenant absolutely nullifies the law. So they realized that they can’t sell tithe through Malachai again because Malachai is the law and the law has been done away with. They are now trying to sell a bunch of cunning devices. They say Abraham paid tithe to Melchizedek and Melchizedec is a representation of Christ in the Old Testament.
I said very well, there are two Christ; Christ before the sacrifice and Christ after the sacrifice. Whatever Christ did before the sacrifice does not count for Christianity. Our covenant with God starts on the cross. That is Christ for us. Melchizedek represented Christ of before our covenant. The Christ now does not need money or your tithe or anything. If he needed them he would have collected, there would have been a visible reference. Jesus Christ speaking to the multitude would have said time has come for you to pay your tithe.
Even those days, who were they paying tithe to? They were paying tithe to the temple and temple was run by a religion called Judaism, not Christianity. In the book of Galatians chapter three verse one, Paul was addressing the Galatians and said: “You foolish Galatians, were you redeemed by the law or by Christ?” Those who lean on the law were described as foolish. Galatian chapter 3:10 says when you follow the law you subject yourself to curse. Tithing is the law and by tithing, you subject yourself to a curse. Galatian 5:1-4 says “when you try to justify yourself by the law you cut yourself from Christ and you fall from God’s grace.”
It puts you in a position where you are cut-off from Christ and when you fall off from the grace. Then, Apostle Paul said it’s useless and unprofitable. The Bible said this much to them who lean on the law and none of our pastors, who are supposed to be our shepherds, can actually come out and tell the people the truth; that look, forget about tithe. They should look for other means to collect money from you because this tithing cannot fly. It is actually exposing the poor people that you are preaching it to flaw and then the curse of the law.
There are 613 laws of Moses; you have to obey every one of them. You can’t cherry-pick them. If you are caught in adultery, you should be stoned to death. If you work on the Sabbath, you should be stoned to death. These are all of the laws of Moses; that is where tithing came from. You can’t pick what you want to pick and leave the rest. The Bible is very clear on this. It says to obey the whole law, if you want to justify yourself by the law you must obey the whole law. A woman who loses her virginity when she is not married should be stoned to death. If you touch a woman during her period you are unclean until evening. A man is not allowed to cut the side of his hair or trim his beards. And Daddy GOs that a preaching this tithe matter are all clean shaven. How can a clean-shaven man tell me to go and obey the law that they themselves are disobeying? And guess what? Jesus gave us two laws.
He said all the laws and all the prophets are summed into two laws; love God and love your neighbour as yourself. How can you, a pastor, collect money from the congregation to build a school and the children of that congregation cannot attend that school? Do you love your neighbour like yourself? And your own children even attend better schools? You that is a pastor; you are disobeying Jesus then telling me to go and obey Malachai under the law. Are we Christians or are we Malachaians?
So you see, it is a faulty doctrine from the devil and the more we allow it the more we run into it. More people are realising that we worship God in error. If you go to the book of Act chapter 17:24, Paul was talking to the men in Athens and he points to a shrine and on the altar written ‘to an unknown God’. He said this altar dedicated to an unknown God, something you worshipped in ignorance is what I am here to teach you about. I have assumed that position. We have worshipped God in ignorance for too long.
Many people think that if you pay your tithe God blesses you. The richest men in the world, the top ten; none of them is even Christian let alone a tither.
Bill Gates, the first man to cross the $100 billion mark is not religious. These people don’t care about religion they work. China is out of poverty, it is a Buddhist nation; India is predominantly Hindu. We have more poor people in Nigeria than India. India has 1.3 billion people, we have less than 200 million people and we have more churches, more pastors more ‘believers’ and many of these things are not adding up. We are getting poorer by the day and more religious by the day.
I am enjoying all of this, but at the same time getting a bit worried. Aren’t you preaching atheism here?
I am preaching the word of Jesus because what we have been taught for so long has been so much of a lie. I tell you 95% of what we have been taught about Christianity when I point out the truth they think it’s blasphemous. The same thing they did to Jesus. Why was Jesus nailed to the cross? Blasphemy, that’s it. Do you understand?
Do you consider yourself a Christian?
Of course I am!
Have you ever paid tithe or refused to? Why?
I have paid tithe back in the days when I worshipped God in error. But now that I know it is a faulty doctrine, it is actually a sin for you to pay tithe. Any time you put yourself under the law it is a sin. Do you want me to read it to you from my Bible? Let’s go to Galatians chapter 2. I am reading from the New Living Translation verse 14 which says: “When I saw that they were not following by the truth of the gospel message, I said to Peter in front of all the others. Since you, a Jew by birth, have discarded the Jewish law and are living like these gentiles why are you trying to make these gentiles follow the Jewish tradition?” Tithing was a Jewish tradition. Peter who was born a Jew had discarded tithing. I will take it further. If you go to verse 17 he says: “But suppose we seek to be made right with God through faith in Christ and then we are found guilty because we have abandoned the law. Would that mean Christ has led to sin?” Then verse 18 answers it and it says absolutely not. Rather I am a sinner if I rebuild the old system of law I already tore down. When you rebuild tithing you are a sinner. To pay tithe is a sin in Christianity. They will never teach you that because they are thieves, they are greedy, they are hungry you know.
Aren’t you afraid continuing these attacks on our Daddy GOs, at least, the Bible says touch not my anointed and do them no harm; because they are representatives of God?
No, I was never afraid of them. Who told you that they are representatives of God? Touch not my anointed is an Old Testament Bible verse taken from King David, who was not a Christian. A lot of people make that mistake. Christianity did not start until after the crucifixion, until after Jesus Christ.
Then why is Abraham called the father of the Christian faith?
Abraham was the father of three religions – Judaism, Christianity and Islam. For you to sit down and say Abraham is the father of Christianity is very ambitious. There was no Christianity until our covenant with God and that covenant cannot be backdated. Abraham was never the likeness of Jesus and he still was not covered by our covenant. Our covenant started from the cross an Abraham did not partake of the gift of the Holy Spirit which started after the resurrection. The same thing goes for Jacob and that is why is dangerous to borrow doctrines of these people.
I will give you an example, whether you like it or not, it is true. Jacob stole his brother’s blessing. That is not quite Christ-like. It worked for them at that time during that period when that is how things worked. But Paul did not steal Peters blessing. That is not Christianity; they were prophets of God and all that but they are our history, they are not our religion.
Abraham is not the father of Christianity, Jesus is the father of Christianity, Abraham is our ancestor. Is like saying Ojukwu’s father is the father of Biafra. No, the father of Biafra is Ojukwu and his father you can say is the ancestor of Biafra because Biafra started with Ojukwu.
How did you feel when some Nigerians expressed displeasure that you called Bishop Oyedepo a bald-headed fowl?
I never did such a thing.
Eeeeh. It was on your twitter handle though no name was mentioned?
I never called anybody. I don’t like calling names, I just preach my doctrine and I help people unlearn their lies. So that was the figment of the reporter’s imagination. You know reporters have very fertile imaginations. I know that whoever owns the message knows it and those who he is or who she is, anyone who is operating under false doctrine can fall under that line.
How does it feel to know that one of the leading Bishops has confessed that they conjured all sorts of semantics to frighten the congregation to pay tithes?
They have owned up to frightening people because we have been able to show, with the scriptures that it is wrong to pay tithes! My question is what else do they manufacture? When you come out and say you were conjuring, I want them to come out the whole truth of what they were conjuring. So that is my message to them. We want the whole truth. (New Telegraph)