A self-proclaimed Ethiopia prophet who convinced family members to dig up the body of a recently deceased man, only for him to fail in resurrecting him, has been arrested following outrage by the relatives.
The preacher, Getayawkal Ayele, was attempting to recreate Jesus Christ's resurrection of Lazarus, as found in the Bible, when he lay on top of the diseased man, Belay Biftu, shouting "Belay, wake up," as reported by BBC News.
Ayele was unable to resurrect the man, and several family members fainted at the scene while others attacked him, outraged over what had happened. The police then arrived and arrested the prophet, saving him from the crowd at the same time.
Ayele has been placed in custody, as abusing dead bodies is a crime under Ethiopian law. It is not clear if he has been released yet.
The man, who works as a health worker, told residents of the town of Galilee, in the Oromia region, about the story of Jesus and Lazarus. Hopeful that he could perform a similar resurrection, they agreed to dig up Biftu's body.
The Mail Online shared footage of the incident, which has since gone viral online, showing Ayele attempting to revive the diseased man's corpse.
Ethiopia has a religiously diverse population, according to the CIA Factbook, though most people belong to Christian denominations.
Southern Baptist missionary Elliot Clark, a cross-cultural church planter, said in an article earlier this month that many citizens in the country believe that they can be and that they are possessed by spirits.
"What the experience of so many Ethiopians — and much of the world — demonstrates is that we must be ready for the things we do not see," Clark wrote on Southern Equip, recalling a recent visit to Ethiopia.
He shared of one remarkable experience visiting a city there:
"As I walked down the street from my hotel, I noticed a commotion across the intersection. Someone was crying out. I assumed there had been an accident or incident. Turning my head, I saw nothing. Then I caught a glimpse of a woman, screaming," he described.
"She rolled on the ground, flailing and writhing in the dust. A crowd gathered. I was sure she was demon possessed. But then I second-guessed myself. And I did nothing. Because I wasn't prepared."
Clark wrote that Christians need to "awaken" at the "reality of spiritual warfare."
"We must be prepared for such challenges. And such preparedness begins with an eye open to the supernatural in Scripture. Today, as much as ever, we need to reacquaint ourselves with the supernatural gospel for our supernatural world," he warned.
Watch a YouTube video of the failed attempt to resurrect the Ethiopian man:
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