Ash Wednesday marks the onset of the Lent, the 40-day period of fasting and abstinence. It is also known as the ‘Day of Ashes’. So called because on that day at church the faithful have their foreheads marked with ashes in the shape of a cross.
The name ‘Day of Ashes’ comes from “Dies Cinerum” in the Roman Missal and is found in the earliest existing copies of the Gregorian Sacramentary. The concept originated by the Roman Catholics somewhere in the 6th century. Though the exact origin of the day is not clear, the custom of marking the head with ashes on this Day is said to have originated during the papacy of Gregory the Great (590-604).
In the Old Testament ashes were found to have used for two purposes: as a sign of humility
and mortality; and as a sign of sorrow and repentance for sin. The Christian connotation for ashes in the liturgy of Ash Wednesday has also been taken from this Old Testament biblical custom./
Receiving ashes on the head as a reminder of mortality and a sign of sorrow for sin was a practice of the Anglo-Saxon church in the 10th century. It was made universal throughout the Western church at the Synod of Benevento in 1091.
Originally the use of ashes to betoken penance was a matter of private devotion. Later it became part of the official rite for reconciling public penitents. In this context, ashes on the penitent served as a motive for fellow Christians to pray for the returning sinner and to feel sympathy for him. Still later, the use of ashes passed into its present rite of beginning the penitential season of Lent on Ash Wednesday.
There can be no doubt that the custom of distributing the ashes to all the faithful arose from a devotional imitation of the practice observed in the case of public penitents. But this devotional usage, the reception of a sacramental which is full of the symbolism of penance (cf. the cor contritum quasi cinis of the “Dies Irae”) is of earlier date than was formerly supposed. It is mentioned as of general observance for both clerics and faithful in the Synod of Beneventum, 1091 (Mansi, XX, 739), but nearly a hundred years earlier than this the Anglo-Saxon homilist Ælfric assumes that it applies to all classes of men.
Putting a ‘cross’ mark on the forehead was in imitation of the spiritual mark or seal that is put on a Christian in baptism. This is when the newly born Christian is delivered from slavery to sin and the devil, and made a slave of righteousness and Christ (Rom. 6:3-18).
This can also be held as an adoption of the way ‘righteousness’ are described in the book of Revelation, where we come to know about the servants of God. The reference to the sealing of the servants of God for their protection in Revelation is an allusion to a parallel passage in Ezekiel, where Ezekiel also sees a sealing of the servants of God for their protection:
“And the LORD said to him [one of the four cherubim], ‘Go through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark [literally, “a tav”] upon the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it.’ And to the others he said in my hearing, ‘Pass through the city after him, and smite; your eye shall not spare, and you shall show no pity; slay old men outright, young men and maidens, little children and women, but touch no one upon whom is the mark. And begin at my sanctuary. So they began with the elders who were before the house.” (Ezekiel 9:4-6)
Unfortunately, like most modern translations, the one quoted above (the Revised Standard Version, which we have been quoting thus far), is not sufficiently literal. What it actually says is to place a tav on the foreheads of the righteous inhabitants of Jerusalem. Tav is one of the letters of the Hebrew alphabet, and in ancient script it looked like the Greek letter chi, which happens to be two crossed lines (like an “x”) and which happens to be the first letter in the word “Christ” in Greek Christos). The Jewish rabbis commented on the connection between tav and chi and this is undoubtedly the mark Revelation has in mind when the servants of God are sealed in it.
The early Church Fathers seized on this tav-chi-cross-christos connection and expounded it in their homilies, seeing in Ezekiel a prophetic foreshadowing of the sealing of Christians as servants of Christ. It is also part of the background to the Catholic practice of making the sign of the cross, which in the early centuries (as can be documented from the second century on) was practiced by using one’s thumb to furrow one’s brow with a small sign of the cross, like Catholics do today at the reading of the Gospel during Mass.
Olutade Oluwatosin and www.theholidayspot.com
PARTAKE IN THE FEBRUARY EDITION OF POWER MUST CHANGE HANDS TO DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF ENGAGING THE MYSTERY OF GOD’S ARMOURY
The monthly God ordained Power Must Change Hands programme tagged- Discover the Secrets of Engaging the Mystery of God’s Armoury would take place live at the MFM International Headquarters: 13, Olasimbo Street, Onike-Yaba, Lagos on Saturday February 6, 2021 by 7.00a.m (WAT) prompt.
Dr. D.K Olukoya, the General Overseer of Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries Worldwide (MFM) would be ministering live to the congregation and general public all over the world at the February Edition of Power Must Change Hands; for the people of God to get total victory all over their enemies.
Like never before, the expectations by the partakers are beyond; The Resurrection of Paralyzed Destinies, Divine Healing and Uncommon Breakthroughs on all Points disclosed a staunch member of MFM.
And, the good news from Dr. D.K Olukoya, the God’s General, he decreed that the ‘God of Elijah shall surely disgrace all battles confronting your increase at the February 2021 Edition of Power Must Change Hands’.
The must join divine programme to Discover the Secrets of Engaging the Mystery of God’s Armoury will be the gateway for a new open heaven and victory in all areas of the partakers that can Discover the Secrets of Engaging the Mystery of God’s Armoury for supernatural victory experience in their lives.
Keep the date and partake in the February Edition of Power Must Change Hands programme live online anywhere you are and get ready to discover the secrets of engaging the mystery of God’s armoury in the mighty name of Jesus.
Viewing Points: All MFM Social Media Platforms
MFM TV (Free-To-Air on IS20)
A Wife Has No Control Over Her Body – Pastor Kumuyi
The theory of Marriage is a very contending and critical issue in the contemporary world today. Marriage is said to be a legal union between a man and a woman to become Husband and Wife. The institution was created by God when he created Eve to help Adam during the creation. A man leaving his father and mother and cleave to his wife is very much appreciated in the Bible. To avoid fornication, a man is expected to get married
Pastor W.F Kumyi, The General Superintendent of the Deeper Life Bible Church took his time to discuss the issue of marriage in one of his latest Bible Study teachings. One contending issue that the man of God emphasized is the ownership of the body. He read the book of 1st Corinthians 7 : 4 which says ” The Wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife. Here he explained that the wife’s body is the most important part but she does not have power over it. Her husband has the power over her body. The Husband also has no power over his body, the power over his body is given to his wife. That is the spirit of oneness. The man of God read Genesis 2 : 24, which says, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. The man of God used this verse to butress his point on the issue of oneness. Two people become one and are make to make decisions for each other.
He sighted different examples
1. The Use of Handset : The man of God preached against couples denying access to eachothers phone. He said what belongs to the husband is also the wife’s and that builds up the spirit of oneness in the family. Hiding issues and matters ain’t qualities of a very good home.
2. Fasting and prayer : If there is any reason for any of the couple to pray and fast, the other other must know of the intention and the reason for such. One should not say the Christian race is quite personal and would decide not to involve the other, it should be a planned step since it is about prayers.
3. Relationship with others : The Man of God said that a Man should not relate with other woman better than how he relates with his wife wether in public or not, likewise the woman. In every situation they find themselves, they should put eachother first before any other.
4. Reconciliation : The Man of God speaks against pride as it has been a problem many couples have. If there is a misunderstanding between the couples, they should not invite a third party to solve such issues for them. Humility should ensure that either of the husband or the wife kneels in soberness and apologize to the other. These has invariably led to many broken homes.
These and many others were issues Pastor W.F Kumuyi explained. He took time to explain the concept for marriage which was beneficial for the married and unmarried
2021 : Prophet Joshua Iginla Releases Prophecy On Covid-19, Nigerian Governor, Others
The clergy with prophetic grace, Prophet Joshua Iginla has declared 2021 as a year for the courageous. Iginla during the crossover service at his 80,000 seater city of Wonders cathedral in Abuja, he reeled out powerful prophetic messages On Covid-19, Kanu, Biafra, presidents, Africa and the world. At large.
Here are some of the prophecies as released by him:
1) The agitation for Biafra will wax very stronger. And we need to pray strongly because it will take a dimensions that will provoke the government of the day to begin to haunt the agitators.
2) And the government of the day needs to be careful so they wont cause an expensive massacre that will dent the image of the government of the day .
3) The agitation will grow stronger and will influence alot of chances of the people from the eastern part of this country . Nobody should look down on the Biafra movement.
Like I keep shouting from the beginning that Dialogue is the key. There is no bomb, gun or force that can stop such ideology except maturity applied for dialogue.
4) The leader of the Biafra should be careful. There are people around him that are traitors. I see someone receiving huge amount of money in other to end the life of this young man ( KANU) through poison. I saw it clearly, someone in the inner circle.
The movement will grow big and they felt the only way is to remove the head. Like I said, there is need to dialogue. The only way to appease it is to come round table to talk.
5) I was taking in the realm of the spirit and I see our Great country Nigeria that 2023 will be a wonderful year for us .
6) The youths will wax stronger. There is still going to be another kind of protest that will come up and it will take another dimension. It will still be betrayed by the same elements. They will move forward but will not be able to clinch the number one spot because it’s not yet time . They will be able to influence every other strategic position and be able to come in on certain percentage m I see 41% . This people looks like army, warriors ,lions with a lionic face and more of them are more of females than males. They will come in,influence the polity but won’t be able to clinch the number one spot. It will be recycle by the same old faces.
7) They will still be the one at the number one spot but their powers will be watered down till 2027. It’s the time for the youths but they are not fully prepared for what is about to happen.
8) They will make meaningful movements but the number one spot doesn’t belong to them yet. I still see old faces recycling the number position.
9) Does it mean Nigeria won’t get better? No God is programming Nigeria . There are people preparing for 2023 who won’t see 2023 at all..
11) Covid-19 is not over yet. We will continue to see it’s wave. We are not through with it yet . It will take another dimension be it real, political or scientifically.
12) Will there be another lockdown, yes we will! However, this year will be better than last year.
13) The economic hardship will increase but those of you who know your God will be strong and do exploits .
14) Top individuals and wealthy people should be prayerful.
15) I see a lot of kidnapping that will be on the increase this year. It will be in different form .
16) Crime rate will increase but the good Lord will keep his own.
17) I see a Governor in Nigeria who needs prayers so that between 2021 and 2023 he should still be there. I don’t know whether it’s sickness, impeachment or death. But I see that his seat was empty and another person taking over his stool.
18) God showed me that Africa will become a safe haven.
19) I see so many white people, top personality leaving their country, trooping into this continent. And I asked the Lord what does this mean and he said Africa will soon become a safe haven. Yes,it will become a place where they want to stay because it will be free from sicknesses and attacks.
20) God will make Africa a mystery to the world. What will hit the developed world is so much because it’s judgement from God . And africa which they have labels religious fanatics will become their safe haven. The reason is that life will become more important than development.
21) The president of Gabon should pray very well.
22) I see an attack on his Health. He should also pray against Coup in that country. I pray for God and his Excellency.
23) The incubent president of Uganda will retain his stool.
24) There will be provocations, tensions and movements that will revolt against him.
25) The president should watch his back because after this alot will happen.
26) Things might fall apart and the centre too might not hold. He will still be in power but the after effects will be strong.
27) There will be attempt to destroy Africa. I pray our leaders won’t be manipulated.
28) I see certain countries like South Africa,Nigeria , Egypt and Ghana that the leaders should be very careful. If you are not conscious of your belly I pray you won’t be used against your people .
29) Zambia is a Great nation. Am very careful to talk about the country but God spoke to him. It’s a Great nation, great people and Greta president. His Excellency means well for the country. He will do his best but the truth is there are a lot if Judases who will betray him.
30) I saw two mighty lions against each other. One has the flag of Zambia round about with Great army around it while the other one doesn’t have such a great army . All of a sudden at the battle field, the one with great army was deserted by his soldiers and joined forces with the other lion. Betrayal will be the puzzle of the election . I recommend he should clean his house.
31) I see a serious shaking at the National Assembly between 2021 and 2023, either at the senate or Josie of Representatives that the centre will not be able to hold.
32) I see some being dragged out and being replaced .
33) God said 2021 is the year for the courageous.
If you are courageous, you will come out with the desired results.
34) There will be things that will attempt to scare propel but if they walk like a lion, irrespective of the storm they will hit their target.
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