Sunday, 29 July 2012

On The Path Of Winners BY BAYO OGUNMUPE Why God Can’t Bless Sinners

On The Path Of Winners

Why God Can’t Bless Sinners

“WHY would a God of love have so many rules and regulations?” a colleague of the pen once asked me. I returned his question by asking one of my own. Have you ever played soccer? “Many times,” he retorted. “Were there any official rules you had to obey? 
  “Of course there were,” my friend answered. We explained to him that without clear regulations it would be impossible to play any game. It would be chaos. Jehovah designed the cosmos with an order that is so precise that scientists have been trying to unravel for centuries. God also gave clear directives for He expects us to live.
  These do’s and don't’s of divine law are not for our chastisement, but for our safety, security and direction. Like any good father, Allah blesses us when we obey and corrects us when we stray. If our disobedience becomes unacceptable, Jehovah can take the drastic step of pronouncing a curse – either on an individual or some particular object. He has done it many times in the scriptures.
  After Moses taught that Yahweh wants our seed to be sown in time of famine and not used for anything unclean, Moses said, “Neither have I given ought thereof for the dead,” Deut 26: 14. In God’s sight giving to dead idols is cursed. The Apostle Paul repeated the warning in the New Testament. He said that our tithe was not to be offered to idols to honour those who had departed. Paul warned: “If any man say unto you, this is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not,” 1 Cor 10:28.
  Through the prophet Ezekiel, God gave a warning to those who would set up a stumbling block such as an idol. He declared, “I will set my face against that man and I will cut him off from the midst of my people,” Ezekial 14:8. Yahweh can’t bless what He has cursed! You cannot either. Here are the lesson God taught regarding our giving. Jehovah told Moses that those who disobeyed would be cursed. There were twelve specific warnings. One, cursed is the man who carves an image or casts an idol, Deu 27:15. Two: Cursed is the man who dishonours his father or his mother, Deu 27:16. Three: Cursed is the man who moves his neighbour’s boundary stone, Deu 27:17. Four: Cursed is the man who leads the blind astray on the road, Deu 27:18. Five: Cursed is the man who withholds justice from the alien, the fatherless or the widows, Deu 27:19. Six: Cursed is the man who sleeps with his father’s wife, Deu 27:20. Seven: Cursed is the man who has sexual relations with any animal, Deu 27:21. Eight: Cursed is the man who sleeps with his sister, Deu 27:22. Nine: Cursed is the man who sleeps with the mother of his wife, Deu 27: 23. Ten: Cursed is the man who kills his neighbour secretly, Deu 27: 24. 11: Cursed is the man who accepts a bribe to kill an innocent person, Deu 27:25. 12: Cursed is the man who does not uphold the words of this law by carrying them out, Deu 27:26.
  Certainly, God wasn't finished. He said, “If thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes which I command thee this day: that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee, Deutoronomy 28:15. Your basket and your kneading trough will be cursed, Deu 28:17. The fruit of your womb will be cursed, Deu 28:18. The crops of your land will be cursed, Deu 28:18. The calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks will be cursed Deu 28:19. You will be cursed when you come in and cursed when you go out, Deu 28:19. When we live contrary to the word of God or attempt to touch what God has cursed, there is nowhere to turn. It has been said that God has no grandsons. Just because our parents and grandparents walked with God, they can’t protect us. That means we each must have a relationship with the Almighty. Judgement for using what is cursed is inescapable. Yahweh said, “Though Noah, Daniel and Job were in communion with me, as I live, saith the Lord God, they shall deliver neither their son nor daughter, they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness,” Ezekiel 14:20.
  We can have the strongest prayer groups in history, but it is impossible to overturn a decision already made by God. If He has cursed something, we had better not attempt to change it. There is however, one thing we can do. God said, “Repent and turn yourselves from idols,” Ezekiel 14:6.
  Our investment is to be in things that are vibrant and dynamic. Here are four ways to know something is alive: one, living things, have appetite. Two, living things take in and give out. Three, living things are never satisfied. As we grow older,  the desire for more never stops. Striving is a sign of life. Finally, living things have growth. A greater blessing resides in being the best rather than being average. Here are the blessings of Allah if we fully obey His commandments: The fruit of your womb, the crops of your land, the young of your livestock. You will have victory over your enemies. It is the desire of our creator that if we avoid the penalty of His curse, we shall have abundance. “The Lord shall make thee plenteous in goods, in fruit of thy body, in fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy ground,” Deu 28:11. He will also give financial blessing. “The Lord shall open unto thee his good treasure, the heaven to give the rain unto the land in his season, and to bless all the work of thine hand,” Deu 28:12.
  Our champion for today is Mairead Maguire Corrigan, the Northern Irish social worker who, along with Betty Williams founded the community of Peace People, a movement of both Roman Catholic and Protestants dedicated to ending the secretarian strife in Ulster, the United Kingdom. For their work, the two women shared the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize.
  Corrigan was from her youth a number of the Legion of Mary, a lay Catholic Welfare Organisation, and through it she became deeply involved in social work among children and teenagers in Catholic neighbourhoods of Belfast, Northern Ireland.
  After witnessing a terrorist attack by the Irish Republican Army in 1976, she along with Betty publicly denounced violence and called for mass opposition to it. Marches of Catholic and Protestant women were organized and shortly after, the community of Peace People was founded-based on genuine reconciliation in Ulster. Although Betty Williams broke with the movement in 1980, Corrigan remained an active member of the group.

On the Path of Winners By Bayo Ogunmupe Create your wealth through intuition

On the Path of Winners
By Bayo Ogunmupe
Create your wealth through intuition
MANY people will only privately admit their belief in psychic phenomena, also known as intuition, but few will publicly acknowledge it for fear of ridicule. Now is the time to take the New Age out of the closet and put its practical principles to work for you. The three obstacles to intuition are fear, habit and stress. No matter what we believe, the fear of appearing ridiculous persists. It is an irrational fear, but the only way to conquer it is to begin succeeding in our use of Extra Sensory Perception (ESP). Success never needs to apologize. Two, habit or tradition, the way things have always been done, are powerful inhibitors of intuition because innovation means breaking with tradition, as tradition is the enemy of progress.
  Finally, stress may be an inescapable fact of life, which is why you should know when to be assertive and say no to other people. When faced by an important decision, you should meditate over it. In doing that, people seem to succeed without trying. Such are people for whom things just seem to click. They have all the luck, say their envious competitors.
  And they are so lucky because the child within them is awake. The child attracts luck because it looks at the world with fresh eyes and invites a friendly response. What we call luck is a mysterious phenomenon, involving among other things an ability to perceive an opportunity the moment it arises. Such perceptions are given most often to those with open child like minds, unrutted by routine.
  Frequently, just loosening up your routine can help you open your psychic powers. Do little things. Go on the merry-go-round. When you get back to your office, you will find yourself bubbling with new ideas. Happiness nourishes the creative urge in you, enabling you to see beyond your nose. It is a fallacy to think that you need to be in the office to be working. You may do your greatest thinking at home sitting by your bed. Vary your routine. Take a different route to work. Join a group on sight-seeing. Wish less. Act more. Take a chance once in a while. I don’t believe in postponing satisfaction. Delay makes the psi in us sad and listless. So make a deal with yourself. Take the psi show while you are in the town. Eat at some terrific restaurants. This awakens your intuition, fueling it to undreamed of heights.
  Accessing intuition is like tuning into a faint radio frequency. It requires a good antenna, a steady hand on the dial and some strong fresh batteries. Thus, delving into the subconscious can be as draining as it is exhilarating. However, you need to maintain an adequate energy level in order to exercise your intuitive abilities. Here are some of what you can do to keep your psychic energies at high levels.
  One, eat moderately for few psychics function effectively after downing a heavy meal. If you are hungry when you start an ESP exercise, have a cracker or some other light snack. Generally stoking your body with vitamins isn’t helpful in your effort to use ESP for self enrichment. Yogis suggest that adequate sexual exercise enhances your psychic powers. It renews psychic energy while bringing you gently back to the outer world.
  Two, get enough sleep. A teacher once urged us not to cram or otherwise tense up before an examination. Go and see the funny movie the night before, he would say. It is a splendid advice. Intuition seldom strikes through the fog of a weary brain. Lack of sleep will quickly catch up with you when doing serious work. Instead of having a vision of the answers, you may end up having a snooze.
  Three, maintain a relaxed attitude. A relaxed attitude is a precondition for enjoying life. When you are enjoying yourself, your psychic ability comes out the more. That is the reason children are more psychic than adults – they know how to play more.
  Four, don’t mess up your body chemistry through alcohol, smoking or drug addiction. It is not possible to turn on your psychic power while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Their most obvious effect is to throw your perceptions off. In short, in developing your psychic powers for making money, you want to be under the influence of only one mind altering agent, and that is the extra sensory perception (ESP).
  Finally, in your tune-up exercises, the issue of belief need not arise. Believe it or not, there are mysterious forces, moving behind the mundane of every day life, such as your guardian angel. If you tune-in, you will feel them stirring within you. Most important is your having a sense of fun and a willingness to let anything happen.
  Our champion for today is Viscount Julian Hedworth Georg Byng, the British Field Marshal, a commander in World War I. Also known as Baron Byng of Vimy, Byng was born in September 1862 in Middlesex, England, a career soldier from 1883, he was promoted major general in 1909. As commander of Canadian Corps in France in 1916, he was responsible for the most famous Canadian victories in World War I.
  Byng was responsible for the capture of Vimy Ridge, North of Arras in April 1917. As Commander of the British Third Army from June 1917, he conducted the first large scale attack by tanks in history at Cambrai in November 1917. His army broke the German line on September 27, 1918. Byng was promoted full general in 1917, he was made a Field Marshal in 1932.
  After World War I, he served as governor general of Canada (1921-26) and Commissioner of London Police (1928-31). He was created a baron in 1919, and a viscount in 1928. He died on June 6, 1935 at Thorpe Hall, Essex, the United Kingdom.

On The Path Of Winners Lessons From The Nigerian Spring By Bayo Ogunmupe

On The Path Of Winners

Lessons From The Nigerian Spring
By Bayo Ogunmupe

THE Nigerian Spring was the consequence of the removal of oil subsidy by the Federal Government on New Year’s Day 2012. The National protest occurred between January 9 and 16, 2012. It took its name from the Arab Spring which touched off revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya in 2011.
  The Nigerian Spring is seen as part of the revolutions in North Africa. To ordinary Nigerians, the fuel subsidy was the only advantage they derived from petrodollars which pour into the national treasury every year. Thus, new year celebrations in 2012 were abruptly terminated when Nigerians woke up to learn that the government petrol subsidy had been withdrawn.
  Nigerians immediately hit the streets, already angry because our corrupt and incompetent government has been unable to repair state-owned refineries thereby forcing Africa’s largest oil producer to import petroleum products.
  What began as sporadic protests ballooned into a show of people power in Abuja, Lagos, Kano and Ibadan. The protests were led by Civil Society Organisations (CSO), the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), the Joint Action Front, and the Save Nigeria Group (SNC). Other towns and cities later joined in the protests with Abdul Waheed Omar, president of the Nigerian Labour Congress calling on workers around the country to go on strike until government rescinded its decision to remove the price hike.
  Millions complied, paralyzing the Nigerian economy. The Jonathan administration had calculated that eliminating the subsidy in the new year would impede coordinated resistance, so the speed, the ferocity and the scope of the resistance caught the authorities by surprise. When the protest leaders’ grievances expanded to include the lavish provisions for the president in the 2012 budget, the abrogation of the corruption in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and government corruption, President Goodluck Jonathan realised that he had to back down.
  First, he had to announce a 25 per cent cut in the salaries of political office holders. Next Jonathan promised to eliminate the waste in social services. Finally in a humiliating retreat, Jonathan had to capitulate to a reduction of subsidy from N141 per litre of petrol to N97 per litre. Thus, it came to pass during this oil subsidy removal protests that there was no record of refined fuel imports, that our refineries had been refining all the oil consumed by Nigerians. It also came to light that N1.7 trillion was deducted from our accounts in 2012 without any oil being imported with the money. Nigeria was merely fleeced, only crude oil was being imported to service the refineries.
  Arising from these startling and mind boggling revelations, Nigerians decried these high level of sharp practices pervading our oil industry, particularly with regards to the NNPC management, the dubious activities of a cabal of oil marketers and oil production companies, who have now come to be known as the “oil subsidy cabal.”
  The existence of this cabal seems to have been holding the government of Goodluck Jonathan to ransom. The cabal had been feeding fat on the nation, with the existence of this cartel being confirmed by top government functionaries, including the ministers of petroleum and finance and the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
  Moreover, government had declared that it would no longer go on with the fuel subsidy programme without due consultation with organized labour. While the people were warming up for these engagements, the government struck with the removal. There was thus the feeling that government acted with impunity and arrogance. When the government indicated her intention to jettison subsidy in the last quarter of 2011, many interest groups expressed their opposition to it. And that was conveyed to the government by the media. All the more so, the labour movement was already shifting grounds on the policy of deregulation.
  In 2009, both the Nigerian Labour Congress and the Trade Union Congress rejected deregulation. But by 2010 they had been converted partially as they were strategizing with government on how union members can survive under a deregulated economy. But rather than leveraging on this favourable situation, government acted foolishly by raising fuel price by 120 per cent. Government thereafter alienated the very people which she was pretending to be wooing.
  Also, there was anger and disgust over the value Jonathan places on the welfare of the people. This prompted Bola Tinubu, former Lagos State Governor to argue that Jonathan preferred to save money rather than save the people. In fact for the past 18 months, Lamido Sanusi, the Central Bank Governor had been campaigning for both the removal of fuel subsidy and downsizing cost of governance if we were to save the economy from collapse. Indeed, the Presidential Advisory Committee led by General Theophilus Danjuma had insisted Jonathan must cut down the cost of governance by merging ministries and parastatals. Moreover, Anya and Oronsaye committees were set up to restructure the public service with a view to cutting costs.
  Kalu Idika Kalu, a former minister of finance captured the mood of the people when he said the subsidy removal smirked of wickedness and “it is an abomination for a king to commit wickedness – Proverbs 16:12.” Thus, the ensuing five day strike demonstrated the power of the internet, the creeping Arab Spring and anger and deprivation exemplified by the Almajiri infested Boko Haram menace.
  Ranged against government in the protests were disparate groups: labour – exercising its legitimate duty of protecting its constituency; unemployed youths, middle class radicals who sought to stop government which seeks to take away their piece of the national cake.
  A feeble defence of the policy was offered by Lamido Sanusi, Okonjo Iweala, Atedo peterside with Labaran Maku belatedly introducing the subsidy reinvestment programme (SURE). Some of us were stunned by government’s naivette in claiming to use money saved from subsidy removal to develop SURE. We know there is no such money anywhere and SURE had no budget. Who is fooling who? Without budget where will government find money to implement SURE?
  It is hoped that everyone has learned wisdom from this Nigerian Spring. Jonathan now knows he cannot take Nigerians for granted. He has to be forthright and hardworking in order to regain the respect and trust given him before the crisis. Government can no longer dither on fighting corruption particularly the subsidy cabal, the fraudsters in the NPPC and the godfathers of the PDP. On the other hand, Nigerians now know that it is in the national interest to deregulate the oil sector. There is now a consensus around punishing the corrupt officials around NNPC and fuel importation. Commendation also goes to the Central Bank Governor who by painstaking analysis convinced the nation to abandon fuel subsidy for Ben Murray Bruce’s transportation subsidy and subsidy reinvestment and empowerment programme.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

On The Path Of Winners BY BAYO OGUNMUPE How To Boost Your Wealth

On The Path Of Winners
How To Boost Your Wealth
THE fourth key to abundance is the process of boosting your wealth. After claiming your inheritance of riches, you may not be able to retain them unless you take steps to sustain your gifts. In thanking God for their sustenance, the children of Israel reminded Jehovah of four things. One, they recounted their origin. So in order to preserve your treasures, you must remember your beginnings. Two, they recounted their persecution. But remembering your past should not be used as an opportunity to show off your scars of battles. Such times should be spoken in humility about your harrowing. Three, they recounted their deliverance from the harassment of their enemies. You remind God of assistance received from others with names and gratitude. Gain greater faith by recalling past victories, like David of ancient Israel. You are boosting your treasures when you remind God of how He saved you. Finally, remind Allah of how He empowered you.
  If you want to boost your abundance, believe that God will sustain your riches. Also, confess to your creator with  your mouth of His favour towards you. That is how to buoy your faith in Jehovah. “So faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God,” Romans 10:17. A lack of understanding will keep you in bondage both spiritually and financially. “Having the understanding darkened, you are being alienated from the life of God through ignorance,” Ephesians 4:18. When you receive the right information a chain reaction is triggered that lead to great things: Information leads to knowledge. Knowledge leads to understanding. Understanding leads to trust. Trust leads to faith and faith leads to belief.
  But abundance isn’t the result of simply asking God for blessings. There are other demands involved. Don’t speak before you listen, otherwise you will neither have trust nor faith. Salvation comes when we first believe it and then confess it. Healing comes when we believe and confess with our mouths. When Paul was preaching in Lystra, a man who had been crippled from birth came to him. The man “heard Paul speaks,” Acts 14:9. What started with listening, ended with leaping. Bible records that Paul looked at the man: “perceiving he had faith to be healed, said with loud voice, stand on thy feet and he leaped and walked,” Acts 14: 9-10. Hearing produces great faith. “If thou can believe, all things are possible to him that believeth,” Mark 9:23.
  What should you do when you have a big problem? Speak to it. When your words are combined with your faith, miracles will happen. Believing with your heart, and speaking with your mouth are the two hinges on which the door of abundance swings. It is like curing stomach ache with incantations. I have met some people who believe the Bible teaches that whatever we ask we can have – without strings attached. Obviously, they have not read John, who wrote, “And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He heareth us,” 1 John 5:14.
  We cannot ask outside the will of God and expect an answer. But when our request lines up with His will, we have the guarantee that He will not only hear us, but that our wish is already accomplished. The 26th chapter of Deuteronomy contains all the keys to abundance. Your words become the vehicle that carries you out of penury and into the land of abundance.
  At this moment, God is at work for you. He may be arranging to have you sacked from your job, because He knows that unless that happens, you will never move to the position He has prepared for you, which is more than you ever dreamed. Persecution is often the opportunity for advancement. Joseph would have never made it to the palace, if he had not been in prison. Jehovah sees the end before the beginning, start seeing your success as complete. To Allah it isn’t a promise, it is a fact. What you are speaking is what you become.” Out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh,” Luke 6:45. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue,” Proverbs 18:21. “For by thy words thou shalt be justified and by thy words thou shalt be condemned,” Mathew 12:37. Thy words have spirit and they are life.
  We will reap tomorrow, the seeds of the words we sow today. If they had been from a heart full of faith and belief, get ready for your treasures to overflow. When the fruits of our lips give thanks to His name, He gives abundance that never ends. The instruments of boosting your treasures include faith, belief and confession. Never forget your beginnings. Talk in gratitude with Allah about your spiritual Egypt when your back was against the wall and Satan was breathing down your neck. God has carried you thus far. He promised never to leave or forsake you, Hebrews 13:5. Praise God that your treasure is being watered, and that increase is on the way. Our champion for today is Samuel Rene Cassin, French jurist, president of the European Court of Human Rights and the principal author of the UN Declaration of the Rights of Man. He won the 1968 Nobel Prize for Peace. The son of a Jewish merchant, Cassin was born in October 1887 in Bayonne, France. He studied law before entering the French army in World War I. He sustained a severe abdominal injury in the war, which troubled him for the rest of his life. Later, he became a professor of international law in Paris, France.
  From 1924 to 1938 he served as French delegate to the League of Nation assemblies and disarmament conferences in Geneva. After the fall of France in June 1940, sequel to World War II, Cassin joined General Charles de Gaulle in London, serving as a member of the Free French government in exile. After World War II, he became president of the Council of State, France’s highest court. Then, he helped found the Unlimited Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in 1944. He was the French delegate to UNESCO between 1945 and 1952. As French ambassador to the UN from 1946 to 1968 he was president of the UN Commission on the Rights of Man (1947-1948) and drafted the Declaration of the Rights of Man. From 1965 to 1968 he was president of the European Court of Human Rights. Cassin received the Nobel Prize for peace in 1968. He was also a Zionist and campaigner for Jewish rights and was president of Alliance Israelite in France. He died in Paris in February 1976.

On The Path Of Winners BY BAYO OGUNMUPE Open Yourself To Miracles

On The Path Of Winners
Open Yourself To Miracles

BY yielding to God’s commands, you open yourself to the miracle working power of obedience. What you give to God as tithe or donation isn’t an ordinary gift anymore than the rod of Moses was an ordinary stick or the mantle of Elijah was an ordinary cloth. As you will discover, it has miracle working power.
  One of my heroes is Joshua, because he rose to power from the lowly position of secretary to Moses. I always cite it that God confers power to those nearest to power. In Joshua’s battle for Jericho, we can visualize the army marching around the city seven times with the priests blowing their trumpets. On the final circle, Joshua commanded the people, “Shout, for Yahweh hath given you the city,” Jos 6:16. Miraculously, the walls of Jericho came tumbling down and the Israelites marched triumphantly into the city. And Joshua, his army and people rejoiced.
  His next target was the distant city of Ai, a march of fifteen miles from Jericho. First a score of Joshua’s men were sent to spy out the land. That is the classical way of fighting an enemy. Is the President tackling the Boko Haram invaders the same way? No. as a sexagenarian, a journalist of 40 years, the Otaoji of Arondizuogu, the sanmori adini of Gumel, and Akede Adini of Ilasamaja, I have never heard or seen the presence anywhere in Nigeria of the State Security Service, the National Intelligence Agency, the Defence Intelligence Agency and the Directorate of Military Intelligence. I only read about them in the newspapers. Any wonder Boko Haram is trouncing Nigerian armed forces! It is as if the Federal Government is conniving at the balkanization of Nigeria. It is not managing the country as it ought to. But unlike President Goodluck Jonathan, Joshua sent spies to Ai, and his spooks reported, “No problem. Don't worry. Let the army rest. There are only a handful of men in defence of Ai.”
  Then, Joshua sent 3000 men to capture Ai – a fraction of his vast army for every Israelite was a soldier. But they were in for a shock. Thousands of his troops were killed and the Israelites fled before the men of Ai, (Joshua 7:4). Joshua was humiliated. What went wrong? If God had promised victory, why were they so defeated? Scripture says that, “The children of Israel committed a trespass in the accursed thing,” Joshua 7:1. That was the root of Joshua’s difficulty. Earlier, God had told Joshua to tell his men that when they capture Jericho, “all the silver and gold are consecrated unto the Lord,” Joshua 6:19. Since those things were sanctified, they became  cursed for anyone to touch. And anyone touching a cursed thing stands accursed, Joshua 6:18. 
  After his Ai defeat, Joshua ordered an inspection of the tribes. When they questioned the tribe of Judah, Joshua found Achan who confessed that he took Babylonian garments, gold and silver which he buried in his tent. Thereupon, Achan lost everything, his life, family and possessions, because he touched what was sanctified. That was why Israel lost at Ai, because they were all affected by the disobedience of one person – Achan. We believe the reason we are now ravaged by Boko Haram is because we Nigerians, Christian and Muslim are not obedient to the words of God. For our perusal, there were three reasons why Israel lost at Ai. They are, one, they were affected by the disobedience of one. Two, they were not operating at full strength. Joshua underestimated his enemy. Three, the vision of a greater Israel was not clearly communicated to the troops. However, victory was attained after Chan had been executed and his property confiscated.
  Belshazzar is my second example of how the sin of one man can affect a whole nation. Belshazzar, the king of Babylonia threw a party for his nobles. And suddenly in the middle of the party he declared that he wanted someone to go to the house of Yahweh to bring the golden goblets. When the goblets arrived the drunken king lifted his glass high saying: Drink, drink, singing praises to their gods of brass, wood and stone. Jehovah didn't wait to punish him. Within the same hour, fingers of a man’s hand came forth and wrote upon the walls therein: “Thou art weighed and found wanting,” Daniel 5:27. That night, like a flood, the armies of his enemies invaded the land and he was slain. Thereafter, his kingdom was divided between Meads and the Persians. Even though Belshazzar had material possessions, he lost it all and died because he took what belonged to God. Thus, obedience to God’s orders is the secret of attaining abundance. God has absolute power, because God is absolutely holy. That’s why He says, “I will sanctify a portion of your increase.” Sanctification unleashes the miracle working power of obedience. When God touches pieces of naira bills in your treasury, He can multiply them until a mountain of obligations disappear. Give to the distressed as an act of faith and worship and watch the miracle begin.
  Our champion today is Valery ByKovsky, the Russian cosmonaut who orbited the Earth 81 times in the space craft Vostok 5, from June 14 to 19, 1963. Born in August 1934 in Pavlovsky, Russia, ByKovsky started flying at age 16. He joined the Soviet army in 1952 and in 1959 he became a fighter pilot. In the early 1960s he was trained as a cosmonaut at Zhukovsky Military Academy. On June 16, 1963 after ByKovsky had been in orbit two days, the Soviet Union launched Vostok 6, carrying Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman to travel in space. The two ships held parallel orbits, at one point approaching to within three miles of one another, but did not rendezvous. They returned to Earth three hours apart.
  For his successes as a cosmonaut, ByKovsky was made a member of the Soviet Communist Party on June 18, while still in orbit and on his return he received Moscow’s highest honour, Hero of the Soviet Union and the Order of the Red Star. He was chief of Cosmonaut Training for the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project which began in July 1975 and was command pilot of Soyuz 22, a 190 hour flight that began on September 15, 1976.