Spirituality: Gateway To Intellectual Prowess
The Chancellor of Covenant University, Dr. David Oyedepo has urged the Management, faculty and senior non-teaching staff of the University to develop their spiritual capacities as a gateway to harnessing the fullness of their intellectual abilities. The Chancellor gave this advice while making a presentation titled, ‘Spirituality: Gateway to Intellectual Prowess’ at the recently concluded 5-day Executive Advance programme at the University’s African Leadership Development Centre.
According to Dr. Oyedepo, “Spirituality is not being religious; it is living according to the dictates of the scriptures,” (I Timothy 3:15-16). Biblical practice guarantees profitable living. Also, Job 32:8 says, There is a vital force in man, ‘the spirit of intelligence,’ and the inspiration of the Almighty gives them understanding,” with this scripture, the Chancellor buttressed the real meaning of the word ‘prowess’ as it relates to intelligence. He stated that it is a superior skill that one can learn by study, practice and observation as well as, exceptional valour or bravery especially in combat or battle. He added that only the brave ever become great.
He defined a genius as, “A person who displays exceptional intellectual ability, creativity, or originality, typically to a degree that is associated with the achievement of an unprecedented leap of insight.”
Dr. Oyedepo emphasized the need to understand the total man concept. He said that man is a three-in-one creature - essentially a Spirit, has a Soul and lives in a Body. This means, “Man lives within a particular structure called the body (I Cor 15:38-39 & 44), his Soul comprises of his Will, his Emotions and his Intellect. His Spirit is the ‘God-being’ on the inside of his human-being.”
He said, “It is that ‘God being’ that died in man in the first Adam. However, the second Adam (Jesus Christ) came to restore that ‘dead man’ back to life. This is what we call being ‘Born again,’ according to John 3:1-5. When that ‘God being’ was in the first Adam, he had Dominion. He was in charge; and was the king of the earth. Remember also that by wisdom kings reign.”
The Chancellor further stated that there is a very thin line between spirituality and intellectualism, since supernatural intelligence dwells in the realm of the spirit, and only the spirit of God can search it out, (I Corinthians 2:14).
He substantiated that Adam possessed an Excellent spirit (Gen 2:19), and we have other scriptural examples in Daniel, Joseph, Paul, etc., coupled with the fact that the Bible came through human vessels. He said an interaction with the Holy Ghost connects mortal men to the fountains of divine wisdom, according to these scriptures, ‘.... but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost,’ 2Peter 1:21. ‘All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable ....,’ 2Timothy 3:16.
Dr. Oyedepo explained that when the Holy Spirit begins to relate with a man’s spirit, He connects him to the deep things of God, which make him a wonder on the earth. He noted also that the spirit of God does not search out only spiritual things, but ALL THINGS, (I Corinthians 2:9-10). All things in this context include, intellectual things (Daniel 1:17); technical things (Hebrews 11:7), (II Chronicles 26:14); scientific things (Genesis 4:38-44, Genesis 30:37-43); economic things (Genesis 13:2, Genesis 26:12-14); political things (Daniel 6:1-3 & 28), etc.
The Chancellor said that God has blessed us with ALL spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3), but all of them are only accessible spiritually (I Corinthians 2:14). And this, he said, is why spirituality is profitable unto ALL things, having the promise of the now and eternity (ITimothy 4:8).
We can now see that the bible is loaded with lots of hidden treasures, (Mark 13:44; Proverbs 23:23; Deuteronomy 28:1-3; Mathew 7:24-25, Daniel 12:3), but it takes a robust spirit, which is the seat of man’s dominion, to access them, (Gen 1:26-28), he reiterated.
The Chancellor stated that the more robust a man’s spirit is the greater command he gains. A natural man, he said, cannot receive the things of the Spirit of God because they can only be spiritually accessed (I Corinthians 2:14). This is because the Spirit of God can only communicate with our spirit (Romans 8:16). Also, it is with the spirit we search all things; the deep things of God (I Corinthians 2:10, Luke 15:7-8; Proverbs 20:27).
He clarified that the more robust one’s spirit is, the brighter he sees (with his mind), the greater depths of insight he accesses and the greater impact he generates. This is because the Spirit of God will always communicate with our spirit on what to do in any given situation. Dr. Oyedepo stated that the word empowers our intellect for enhanced delivery, according to Psalm 19:7-9, Psalm 119:97-100 and II Timothy 3:15.
Dr. Oyedepo further said, “A robust spirit cannot be wished; it has to be built and the more robust a man’s spirit is, the greater depth he gains and the more robust his intellect becomes. Let us take the spirit of man as the engine of a car and his soul as the gear system that gives motion to the vehicle when engaged. Of what use is the gear system when the engine of the vehicle is ‘knocked?’ In the same vein, our spirit man is the engine of our vehicle (body), while we engage productively with our soul/intellect to maximize our adventure on earth. This illustration clearly defines the inestimable value of spirituality in maximizing one’s intellectualism.”
Joseph, he said, is a great example of a man who demonstrated intellectual prowess in the Bible; a supernatural thinker who was described by Pharaoh as “A man in whom the Spirit of God is.” He operated at an unusual level of intelligence which was associated with the Spirit of God at work in him (Genesis 41:38-44). Pharaoh exclaimed, “…in as much as God has shown you all this.” That was the Spirit of God, revealing to Joseph the deep things of God as it relates to the needs of the hour.
The Chancellor also listed Paul the Apostle as an example of a man of intellectual prowess. The demons Screamed in Acts 19:15, “Jesus I know and Paul I know….” The men of Lystra exclaimed in Acts 14:11, “The gods are come down to us in the likeness of men.” King Festus said with a loud voice in Acts 26:24, “Paul, much learning doth make thee mad.” Paul’s intellectual capacity was boosted by revelation (II Corinthians 12:7). The wisdom of God was flowing through him like a fountain of water and he wrote two-third of the New Testament. When ‘the engine’ (the spirit of a man) is in shape, man’s intellect (soul) is empowered for maximum delivery.
In conclusion, he said, therefore, that a ‘Robust Spirit’ is key to a world of intellectual feats; and developing a robust spirit requires for one to be actively involved in study and meditation on the word of God, which is a spiritual meat (John 4:32, Mathew 4:4, Jeremiah 15:16). The word empowers our intellect for enhanced delivery (Psalm 19:7-9, Psalm 119:97-100, 2Timothy 3:15). Other spiritual exercises are praise and worship (Psalm 84:7, Psalm 100:4) which brings one into realms of inspiration that engenders supernatural intelligence (Job 32:7-8), prayers (Daniel 2:16-19, James 1:5); spiritual stewardship (Daniel 6:22); and exercising of one’s conscience (Acts 24:16, I Timothy 4:7-8).