Selling of land forbidden
By Ps PETER AGLUM
I HAVE observed in few places I visited some very disturbing facts.
I noticed that customary landowners live very poorly. I have interviewed few people and they told me that these people are owners of the prime land around town. They sold their land for certain amounts of money to certain people.
However, the proceeds from the sale of land were all drained within a matter of months. Nothing good came out from the sales and I believe their lives today are worse than when they still had possession of their land.
The outsiders who bought the land lived in luxury while the landowners lived in total poverty and even worse they work and feed from those whom they had sold their land to.
This discovery led me to search in the Bible to see what God said about selling land. To my surprise I discovered that selling one’s land brings a curse upon himself.
People may think that they own the land and have the right to sell it and do what they please but let us consider what God says about selling the land.
Lev 25:23 ‘The land shall not be sold permanently, for the land is Mine; for you are strangers and sojourners with Me.24 ‘And in all the land of your possession you shall grant redemption of the land.25 ‘If one of your brethren becomes poor, and has sold some of his possession, and if his redeeming relative comes to redeem it, then he may redeem what his brother sold.26 ‘Or if the man has no one to redeem it, but he himself becomes able to redeem it, 27 ‘then let him count the years since its sale, and restore the remainder to the man to whom he sold it, that he may return to his possession. 28 ‘But if he is not able to have it restored to himself, then what was sold shall remain in the hand of him who bought it until the Year of Jubilee; and in the Jubilee it shall be released, and he shall return to his possession.
The Bible plainly says that God owns all the land and he divided them and given to the people as an inheritance. He divided the land and given to all nations to inhabit. Acts 17:26 “And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings.
We by right inherit properties from our parents. Inheriting property or land is the birthright of a child from his/her parents. God has a Father given us His land as an inheritance to live on the land.
Birthrights are not supposed to be sold as we do not pay for them but received them freely. Once we sell the inherited property, we sell off our birthright of inheritance. That means we sell off everything and especially land, we sell off our lives.
My father in-law who is a wise man and a chief in the village told me recently that we are identified with our land. You can be living in Australia for decades but people in the village will point to your piece of land in the village and call your name and say, “this is Joe Blow’s land”.
You can be a Simbu living in Western Highlands for three to four generations and you will claim to be a Western Highlander but the Western Highlanders will still see and call you as a Simbu man. That is simply because you are not from that land.
Our lives and identity are connected to our land and when we die we will return back to the land where we were taken and created. That old wise man sums up everything and I was amazed at his wisdom.
Looking back to birthrights and inheritance, it reminds us of Esau selling his birthright. (Gen 25:30-34). And Esau said to Jacob, “Please feed me with that same red stew, for I am weary.” 31 But Jacob said, “Sell me your birthright as of this day.”32 And Esau said, “Look, I am about to die; so what is this birthright to me?”33 Then Jacob said, “Swear to me as of this day.” So he swore to him, and sold his birthright to Jacob.34 And Jacob gave Esau bread and stew of lentils; then he ate and drank, arose, and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.
As a result of Esau selling his birthright, he lost everything including his sonship right from Isaac. Even though he is the first born son of Isaac, he has no place of inheritance among the children of God. He is nobody and a forgotten race to this date as far as the Bible is concerned.
Therefore, God instructed His people that they must not sell the land.
God also spoke a curse upon people who will remove their neighbour’s landmark; Deut 19:14 “You shall not remove your neighbour’s landmark, which the men of old have set, in your inheritance which you will inherit in the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess.
Deut 27:17 ‘Cursed is the one who moves his neighbor’s landmark.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen!’
When a piece of land is sold, the landmark identifying a particular person is removed so as the identity as the landowner. Therefore, you will have no identity in your own land because your right to your identity as the landowners is not there anymore.
Consequently, you will live in poverty while those whom you sold the land will live in luxury as the Bible plainly puts it; Deut 28:43 The sojourner that is in the midst of thee shall mount up above thee higher and higher; and thou shalt come down lower and lower. 44 He shall lend to thee, and thou shalt not lend to him: he shall be the head, and thou shalt be the tail.
God approves the selling of land but not permanently (Lev 25:23-28). In other words it means we can lease the land to someone for a set period of time and when the time expired the land can be taken back. That is the kind of arrangement that God wants but completely selling the land is not approved by God and carries a heavier penalty of living in curse.
I also suspected that selling prime land in our towns and cities, especially Port Moresby city to foreign nationals is one cause of Papua New Guineans living a life which really fulfills the words in Deut 28:43 “The sojourner that is in the midst of thee shall mount up above thee higher and higher; and thou shalt come down lower and lower. 44 He shall lend to thee, and thou shalt not lend to him; he shall be the head and thou shalt be the tail”.
Our land is our mother and everything that we need is provided by our motherland. Therefore, we must be very cautious with how we deal with our land. Here are few suggestions to avoid curses:
PNG as a nation must repent to God for selling our birthright to foreign nationals.
All foreign nationally owned land must be redeemed by the State.
All lands acquired through fraudulent deals must be forfeited to the State
Strict control measures must be put in the Lands Department to handle all land matter transparently.
A strong awareness must be made to all Papua New Guineans not to sell their land but lease it out.
God bless PNG!
For more information and queries, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 71185033/75202371
Tough road to winning souls
By DAVID SUSUVE
ON Sept 16, 2020, I took a highway trip to Lalaura, with youths from the Gerehu United church for an Independence crusade organised by congregation members John Amos, Anthony Taureka and local church pastors of the village.
The crusade ran from the Sept 17 to 20, under the slogan “Lalaura for Jesus.”
Lalaura is a remote village located in the Abau District of Central. The trip there from the nearest urban centre, Port Moresby, is illustrative of the many challenges experienced by this isolated community.
For me personally, the experience was not like an ordinary crusade trip, but a challenging testimony, especially for a new believer like me who wanted to experience the cost of following Jesus Christ.
1 Peter 2:21 says, “to this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.”
Anyway, we left the Gerehu United Church grounds on Wednesday night at 11.30pm on a highway PMV truck called Poini.
The number of youths I travelled with was 20 in total and all male, including few congregation members who escorted us, in two separate 10 seater vehicles.
The Magi Highway which begins in Port Moresby and extends all the way to Abau district, is sealed until just before Madob village, after the Upulima station.
According to locals the road has deteriorated and has been left like that for many years.
Before reaching Waiori junction at around 6am in the morning, the PMV got stuck in mud brought on by significant rainfalls, but after three hours we managed to dig away the mud bringing the PMV onto the hard road surface.
Travelling further past Kupiano junction, we decided to take the Kapari route to get a boat from Viriolo to Lalaura village, while the other vehicles took the other route.
We were to tail the other vehicles and arrive safely, but the driver of the PMV truck decided we take the Kapari route.
On our way down, the PMV got trapped in a knee-deep swampy paddock. The smell of that swamp is so horrible that you would not want to remain there for longer than a few minutes.
It was 11.30am when the the PMV truck got stuck in the thick layer of mud.
It took us five hours trying to get the truck out of the mud. Despite several attempts, and even with the Moreguina ambulance trying to pull the truck out using a tuck belt, nothing worked.
The crusade was to be staged that same night and with time against our side, we off-loaded all the cargos including the set of instrument’s and carried it down to Viriolo point which was about a five-minute walk from where we were bogged.
We were exhausted but managed to load the cargo onto two separate dinghies at 6pm, destined for Lalaura.
Arriving at around 7pm at Warumana point, we made our way straight to the Lalaura rugby oval to set up for the first night of the crusade.
Dear reader, if God has an investment in you or your church, the devil will not sit and clap his hands, he will throw every weapon at you to stop you from bringing forth the gospel. But we must never give up!
I was delighted to see the different denominations in Lalaura working in unity, creating a path for the gospel to reach their people, which is something that has been missing for a very long time.
Speakers at the three night’s crusade were Evangelist Geno Geno, Evangelist Tau Vaira, and prophet Ezekiel Tuka. Evangelist and leader of the 4th Man ministry, Kulu Ora took the day sessions.
During the crusade, I witnessed the overflow of the anointing of the Holy Spirit that crippled the devil, when the entire village repented before God, especially on the last night when prophet Tuka took the podium.
Many villagers came out giving their hearts to Jesus, others were delivered and restored through the word of knowledge, prophesy were released to individuals, and the prophet also revealed future events that will take place soon in the country and the world.
I am humble and admit that through the many challenges, the end result was seeing many souls coming back to the Lord.
This inspired and prompted me to write this story, because God still wins despite all odds. For God didn’t promise us a smooth flight, but he promised us a smooth landing.
And this is what I experience on my first crusade trip with the Gerehu United Church youths, and I believe there will be many more coming.
I would like to take this time, to encourage churches to work in unity for missions and provide resources, advice and support to young people going out for outreach or crusade programmes, because we are called for this very reason to reach out and make disciples.
As the body of Christ we need each other because individually it is extremely difficult, often impossible to do what can be done by a group of people collectively.
Psalm 133:1 tells us; ‘How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!’
When we live and work together in unity, God commands a blessing.
Truly the road to saving souls is not easy, it comes with a lot of enthusiasm, perseverance, dedication, commitment, sacrifices and patience in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Be blessed and continue imitating Jesus Christ, my dear beloveds.
- The author works with Kalang Advertising and is a member of the Gerehu United Churuch youth ministry.