Critical Review on Prophetism, Charism and Agwu: Striking a Balance between Discriminatory Belief and Reality

Critical Review on Prophetism, Charism and Agwu: Striking a Balance between Discriminatory Belief and Reality

Charismatic gifts, though tautological, is a catch word amongst Christian denominations, Catholics
and non-Catholics alike. Claim of charisms is an assurance of a team of followers and adherents. The
more one is able to hypnotize the people into believing that he has charisms, the more famous he
becomes and the greater respect he commands. He immediately begins to answer “Man of God”.
Fortune telling confused as prophesying is the most popular amongst these uninformed. Uttering of
unintelligible sounds, frenzy shaking and rolling or dancing in spirit are common signs that one is
possessed by the spirit of prophecy amongst Christians of today. This paper questions the
authenticity of the Christian prophetic gift claims against the backdrop of African (Igbo of Nigerian)
traditional possession by the Agwu spirit. One gets increasingly concerned with the truth value of the
claims that Christian prophetic spirit is good while African Agwu spirit is evil since most signs seen
amongst Christian prophets and prophetesses are not really different from the ones seen in the life of
those possessed by Agwu in African Traditional Religion understanding. Further, people possessed
by Agwu are known for possessing supernatural powers like healings, visions, auditions and even
more. If this is the case, why must the later be repudiated by the former and why must Christians
regard them as unbelievers and in need of conversion? Could it not be that the native Africans are
coerced into accepting the belief of the Westerner as authentic to the unfortunate neglect of the even
superior African belief and experience? This and other similar issues form the status quaestionis of
this paper

Author(s) Details
Dominic Obielosi
Department of Religion and Human Relations, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria.

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