One by one, the demons came out, marched towards me, collapsed into the ground and
I was a guest at the Victory Christian Church, Badagry Expressway, Lagos. The preacher was the late Bishop Harford Iloputaife. At the end of his message, he asked those who wanted to give their life to Christ to come forward. I honestly don’t remember what happened, but some force carried me to the altar.
Afterwards, a church-worker informed us that it is the privilege of “born again” Christians to speak in unknown tongues. He mumbled a short prayer and told us to start speaking. Suddenly, some people started making funny noises. I was convinced the church had planted these “jokers” among us. I said to myself: “Who do these people think they are fooling?”
A presumptive ministry
A few weeks later, Pat Utomi invited me to a Full Gospel Businessmen’s Fellowship dinner. The preacher also asked new believers to come forward and prayed for them to receive the gift of tongues. Although I did not answer the altar-call again, I suddenly started speaking in tongues in my seat. I quickly put my hand on my mouth to stop it.
I did not like the sound of my new tongue. I was afraid it was demonic and refused to use it. I even sought the counsel of “deliverance ministers” on the matter. They all insisted the gift was of God. One Mrs. Ibeneme even assured me God would give me other tongues as well. Nevertheless, I remained highly sceptical.
One day, the Lord woke me up early in the morning and said: “Femi, pray in tongues and don’t be afraid.” So I got up and started praying in my new tongue. I was surprised to find that no demon jumped at me or out of me. The more I prayed, the more I realised I had been deceived. Someone had given me the false impression that my new tongue was demonic.
Then I went further. If the devil did not want me to pray in tongues, it could only mean it is a potent weapon of spiritual warfare. So I went from one extreme to the other. I would pray in tongues at every possible opportunity. I gave myself a self-appointed ministry of tormenting the devil before his time (Matthew 8:29). I would wake up at night, go to a window in my living-room and pray vigorously in tongues towards the sky, convinced that in so doing I was scattering the kingdom of darkness.
An open vision
Then one morning, I decided to switch gears and go even further. I told the Lord: “I am going to kill off all the demons in this flat with my tongue.” I sat on my bed and prayed non-stop. By the third hour, the Lord opened my eyes and I started seeing the demons. They were all dressed in the medieval uniform of Roman gladiators. They had swords and shields and body armour. And wait for it; there were literally hundreds and hundreds of them.
“This is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, that I will pour out of my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions’” (Acts 2:16-17).
One by one, the demons came out, marched towards me, collapsed into the ground and disappeared. I kept on praying for another two hours, making a total of five altogether. After exactly five hours, they stopped coming out and I stopped praying, convinced that I had “killed” them all. Never mind the fact that you cannot kill demons.
A heavenly experience
Now listen to this. Once I stopped praying, I noticed something astonishing. I had lost virtually all previous sense of feeling. I could feel absolutely nothing in my body but love. My entire body became buttery-soft; suffused with the love of God. It is the most amazing feeling I have ever experienced. Simply indescribable!
Just then, the door opened and my wife walked in. I started telling her how much I love her. I waxed lyrical about how smitten I was when I first met her in Rome, Italy at the age of sixteen. Karen stood staring at me. She could not understand what prompted me to tell her that, but sensed something strange was going on.
However, the more I spoke to her, the more I regressed. It was as if I was going back into my own skin. It would appear the demons were regrouping or gradually coming back again. My “normal” feelings started coming back, until I was back again where I started.
I did not stop loving my wife. However, the overwhelming experience of feeling nothing but the love of God was no longer there.