THE petition by Joseph Kingal Ministry to God is as surprising as the tele-evangelist’s death was shocking.
The ministry held a press conference where it announced that it had “petitioned” God to resurrect their evangelist founder.
We feel that the petition dishonours the memory of Pr Kingal.
Indeed, we are inclined to suggest that were he alive, he would forbid this kind of a petition to be made to God.
Great men and women of saintly grace and stature have passed away in the prime of life down through the centuries but a reversal of natural process, such as a resurrection from the dead, has not occurred excepting, of course, that which is attributed to Jesus Christ.
To petition God in such a manner, and to suggest in the same breath that if God is unwilling to reverse nature, then He ought to give a sign as to why He is disinclined, is dangerous stuff for Christians everywhere.
What if both petitions are unanswered? What then?
Christians, whose faith might be wavering, will log on to this petition and, if nothing comes of the petition, they are likely to turn their back on God.
That is the danger we speak of.
In a way, it is as if the ministry is mocking God with this petition and trying to push Him into a corner, to force His hand, as it were.
We sense a lot of anger and angst with God by the ministry in that petition and the public pronouncement of it.
A liberal translation of the petition might read thus: “God, why did You call Pr Kingal at this time in such a painful fashion when his job is not yet done here? We declare you have made a mistake. Reverse that decision or tell us why you cannot do it?”
It is not exactly the kind of conversation you want to have with God.
Yes, there is a lot of pain now and not a little anger too.
It is at such a time when the ministry is bereft of its leader, where there is much emotion and suffering, when the faithful are milling around lost and directionless, that the church must show true leadership by providing strength and direction.
This is what all Christian leaders wish for in life. This is what Christ aspired towards when he walked the earth. Christ wished that after He died, His work would be continued and remembered.
That is why early Christians went to their death in the coliseums of Rome singing praises to God as lions and wild animals tore at their flash and ate them alive.
That is why great men and women of God down through the ages have cared less for their own lives but lived only to ensure the work of God was continued.
Kingal also lived to see the Word and work of God extended to the farthest reaches of Papua New Guinea.
His work was abruptly terminated last week when his Toyota landcruiser trooper skidded on Zumim Bridge in the Markham and plunged into a gulley, killing him and seriously injuring his wife and children.
It would seem that God meant for his family to live but called Kingal to himself.
As Christians, we can mourn his death but we should also rejoice that he has been called to a place that he has created for himself, sooner rather than later.
There is, we suppose, a reason for everything.
The maker, who exists beyond time, knows what tomorrow holds.
We can neither question His motives nor force His hand.
The Joseph Kingal Ministry would do well to now gather the Christians, who have followed Kingal, to provide solace and comfort for them and to inspire them to know that the ministry would continue and would be as vibrant as ever, that in death as in life, Joseph Kingal lives on and the message of God will continue uninterrupted.
That is the stuff we wish to hear from the ministry. The petition such as the ministry has come up with challenges God and, in this, the ministry can only come off second best.
It is also dangerous stuff which can rift the ministry and undo all the hard work that Kingal had done in his life.