“If you want to see First Century Christianity, get on a time machine, or buy an air ticket to Africa.” - (Phillip Jenkins, The New Christendom)
Jesus said: “I will build My church and the gates of death will not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18). Therefore, a primary foundational teaching series for me is always ont he nature of the authentic New Testament church.
The church of Jesus Christ owes a great spiritual debt to Africa. From the First Century to the Twenty-First Century, Africa has been strategic in the plans of God. The baby Jesus would not have survived King Herod’s massacre of the baby boys in Bethlehem if the angel of the Lordwould not have instructed Joseph to take Mary and Jesus to Egypt until after Herod’s death. This was in fulfillment of the Messianic prophecy that said: “Out of Egypt I called My son” (Hosea 11:1; Matt. 2:15). Simon of Cyrene, a Black man from Northern Africa, helped carry the cross to Calvary for Christ. Two of the church elders at Antioch who laid their hands on Paul and Barnabas and commissioned them for the first missionary journey of the Christian church were Lucius from Cyrene in Africa, and Simeon, who is called “Niger” or “the black.” It was through the preaching of the Ethiopian eunuch that the Gospel first went to the African continent before the end of the First Century—long before it ever came to what is now Europe and America. So, Christianity can never rightly be spoken of as the “white man’s religion.” Our faith was born in the Middle East and went to Africa long before it ever traveled west to Europe and America.
JL Williams interviewed several of his partners on the African continent and we are highlighting some of them here. Complete interviews will be posted in the coming months.
I wanted to share with you the September 2010 newsletter from Chapin Living Waters, our long time partner in distributing drip irrigation systems in ministry areas around the world.
I am attaching the September newsletter from Pastor Fernando of UCF of Sri Lanka. I hope you enjoy reading about their great work for the kingdom!