Who is T. B. Joshua?
Temitope Balogun Joshua is a Nigerian televangelist and faith healer; he is one of the most influential personalities in Africa. Believed to have been born after being in his mother’s womb for 15 months and also having survived a near-death accident as an infant, he rose to become a self-proclaimed spiritual messenger of the almighty. Obedient to the divine call, he started a ministry with a mere eight members, of which he currently serves as the General Overseer. He is the leader and founder of the ministry organization ‘The Synagogue, Church of All Nations (SCOAN)’ which spreads his religious teachings and messages around the world. The ministry started very small, but has now grown far beyond the shores of Nigeria. The organization also runs a Christian television station called Emmanuel TV, and has gathered a large following over the years across the globe. He is also a notable humanitarian, providing aid to minorities and the underprivileged. Today, as a man of faith, he is both a representative of God and of people. He has published numerous videos claiming to document the healing of incurable disabilities and illnesses such as HIV/AIDS. He is considered to be one of those who have submitted to the will of God and embrace every act of the almighty with love and respect.
Childhood & Early Life
He was born on June 12, 1963 in the small village of Arigidi in Akoko, Ondo State, Nigeria. According to him, unusual circumstances surrounded his birth as he remained for 15 months in his mother’s womb before being born, a much longer time than the normal pregnancy period.
Another remarkable event occurred when he was three days old, as a large boulder crashed through the roof of his house, missing him by a few inches. Therefore his mother named him, ‘Temitope’, meaning, ‘What You (God) have done for me is worthy of thanks’.
From 1971 to 1977, he attended St. Stephen's Anglican Primary School in Arigidi, Akoko, Nigeria, but failed to complete secondary school education because of poverty. In school, he was known as "small pastor" because of his love for the Bible.
He further gained reputation for spiritual prowess after confronting a madman in the school premises and collecting his weapon from him. He was the leader of 'Scripture Union' whilst in school.
Thereafter, he worked for some time washing people's feet on the muddy streets of Lagos before moving to a poultry farm where he had the demeaning job of carrying chicken waste. At the same time, he organized Bible studies with children and attended evening school.
He also tried to be enlisted into the military, an ambition which was aborted by an act of fate, as the train he boarded to attend an interview in the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna, developed fault and he was left stranded for six days.
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In 1987, he visited a ‘prayer mountain’ to seek the face of God. There, he fasted and prayed for 40 days and 40 nights. He wrote that in a heavenly vision, he received divine anointing and a covenant from God to start his ministry.
Thereafter, he laid the foundation of his ministry organization ‘The Synagogue, Church of All Nations (SCOAN)’.The society has released numerous videos claiming to document the healing of incurable disabilities and illnesses such as HIV/AIDS. The videos have generated lot of controversy and have amassed hundreds of thousands of views.
Many people have also claimed to have been healed through ‘Anointing Water’ that has been prayed over by him and given to those who are unable to physically attend his church in Lagos. His organization has also been in controversy regarding the deliverance of those allegedly possessed by evil spirits during its services.
He claims to be a prophet and has allegedly predicted such events as Michael Jackson's death, the attack during Boston marathon in America and the outcome of two African Cup of Nations (AFCON) final matches. He also allegedly predicted the crash of Malaysian Airlines MH370 several months before the incident.
He has also written and published books such as ‘The Mirror’, ‘The Step Between You And The Cure’, ‘Daily Time With God’ and ‘What The Future Holds’.
He is the leader and founder of the ministry organization ‘The Synagogue, Church of All Nations’ (SCOAN), which runs a Christian television station called Emmanuel TV, available on satellite and on the internet via the Streaming Faith broadcast portal. His shows are also aired weekly on a number of local television stations across Africa.
Awards & Achievements
For his consistent humanitarian work, he was conferred with the National Honor of OFR by the Nigerian government in 2008.
He was honored as an ‘Ambassador of Peace’ by the ‘Arewa Youth Forum’, a predominantly Muslim organization, in appreciation of his humanitarian endeavors.
He was recognized as one of Africa's 50 most influential people by Pan-African magazines 'The Africa Report' and 'New African Magazine'.
Personal Life & Legacy
He is married to Evelyn Joshua and the couple is blessed with three children. His eldest daughter, Serah is a graduate from ‘London School of Economics Law Faculty’.