The Obuasi Area of The Church of Pentecost, under the leadership of Apostle Martin Seth Appiah, would round off this year’s Ministers and Officers’ retreat on Friday, March 16, 2018.
The event, which began on Wednesday, March 14, 2018, is being held concurrently at four zonal centres (Bidieso, Kwabrafoso, Asokwa and Edubease) under the theme: “Remain In Christ And His Basic Message” (1 John 2: 24-25).
The speakers for the retreat are Apostle John Appiah Aidoo (La Area Head), Apostle Dr Ben Ali (Dean Faculty of Theology & Mission – PUC), Pastor Joshua Yirenkyi-Smart (Lecturer, Pentecost Theological College) and Pastor Fred Antwi (Kokomlemle District)
In his opening address, Apostle M. S. Appiah said that Officers’ retreats are carefully organized to equip officers for their leadership duties in the various Local Assemblies and Districts. He then led participants to memorise 1 John 2:24-25, which is the main Bible verse for the 2018 theme of the Church.
Speaking at the Bidieso Zone, Apostle Aidoo took the officers through the 7th Tenant of The Church of Pentecost – Baptism, Gift and Fruit of the Holy Spirit.
Using 1 Corinthians 12:8-31, Mark 16:17 and Galatians 5:22-23 as scripture references, he said that the Holy Spirit is central to the teachings of the Church, however, the activation of the power of the Holy Spirit depends on the individual.
He added that in the early days of the Church, the teachings of the Holy Spirit was so key that some were of the view that without the Holy Spirit one could not attain eternal life until further studies revealed that salvation is obtained by accepting and professing Christ as Lord and Saviour. He, however, said that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is the second experience that every Christian must yearn for after accepting Christ into their lives.
This, according to him, is the reason why no member of the Church is called to be an officer without being baptized in the Holy Spirit.
Apostle Aidoo indicated that receiving of the Holy Spirit is in three dimensions. He said the first dimension is being born-again, where the Holy Spirit helps the individual to transition from the Kingdom of darkness into the Kingdom of Light (1 Corinthians 2:13).
The second dimension is the baptism in the Holy Spirit, which is an experience where the power of the Holy Spirit falls on the born-again Christian to equip them with power, courage, insight, directions and other gifts of the Spirit. He added that the initial evidence of the Holy Spirit baptism is tongue speaking.
The third dimension, he noted is the infilling of the Holy Spirit which is achieved through fasting and prayers, Bible reading and studies about the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18)
Apostle Aidoo stated that Spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 12: 1-11) are in three categories namely: Gift of the Holy Spirit which are grouped into Revelatory Gifts: Word of Wisdom, Word of Knowledge, Discernment of Spirit, Communication Gifts: Speaking in Diverse Kinds of Tongues, Interpretation of tongues, Prophesy, and Power Gifts: Gift of Healing, Working of Miracles and Faith
Ascension Gifts, on the other hand, are the special gifts bestowed on individuals to become or serve as Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors and Teachers (Ephesians 4:10-12), while Grace Gifts include: Prophecy, Serving, Teaching, Encouraging, Giving, Singing, Leadership and Showing Mercy.
Touching on the Fruit of the Holy Spirit, Apostle John Appiah Aidoo is the characteristics portrayed by a person who possesses the Holy Spirit. They are Love, Joy, Peace, Long-suffering, Gentleness, Goodness, Kindness, Faithfulness, and Self-Control. (Galatians 5:22).
The opening ceremony of the 2018 Officers’ Retreat of the Bidieso Zone recorded 491 participants.
Report By: Ebenezer Asare