A video of esteemed Nigerian Pastor E A Adeboye admonishing Christians who do not pay tithes – the practice of giving 10% of their earnings to the church – has enraged some Nigerians on social media.
In the recording, Pastor Adeboye can be heard saying to his congregation:
“Anyone who is not paying his tithe is not going to heaven, full stop.”
Some of the tweeters wondered on what authority he was making his statement:
he is the one in charge of gate pass to heaven. Msteeeew
— Uchenna Chris (@chrysogonusuch1) April 12, 2018
@pastor Adeboye you are not God sir. Only God tells who makes heaven or not, you pastors should stop deceiving the people. Bill gate don't pay tithe nor the others who gives to help the humanity.
— PicassoMuzikent. (@Olupicasso1) April 13, 2018
But a few others were in full support of the pastor:
Yes y'all read Malachi chapter 3 na and see for yourself
Malachi 3:8 Will a man rob or defraud God? Yet you rob and defraud Me. But you say, In what way do we rob or defraud You? [You have withheld your] tithes and offerings. Please will a robber go to heaven ?
— BABAEBUBE (@babaebube) April 12, 2018
Act according to what the Bible says. He said his but you will be accountable for your actions on that day.
— Keneko (@july19born) April 13, 2018
Pastor Adeboye, who heads the Redeemed Christian Church of God – one of the biggest churches in Nigeria – has been listed by Forbes as one of the richest clerics in the world with a net worth of $130m (£91m).
Tithing has become a heated topic here.
Another respected pastor, Tunde Bakare, told BBC Yoruba earlier this year that tithing was not compulsory.