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When we speak about the decolonisation of the church we mean the removal of Western notions of superiority and the denigration of African ideologies for the purpose of maintaining white people’s monopoly on what true evangelical Christianity is. Decolonisation is not the transformation or reformation of current ways of thinking and knowledge-making which are inherently hierarchical. It is doing away with such hierarchical structures in the first place so that…
Church diversity is not enough… The recent protests for racial justice in the world have had Evangelical Christian organizations everywhere scrambling to put out sermons, statements and hold zoom conversations addressing racial injustice. I fear that when we go back to the new normal, churches who have members and leaders from different backgrounds will see...
I confess that this current moment of racial awakening in white society and in "evangelical" churches has me deeply conflicted. I have never seen so many prominent white or multi-ethnic (with white leadership inevitably) "evangelical" churches addressing issues of race and injustice concurrently. Of course, we have traditionally had the bi-annual sermon or workshop on racism or caring for the poor but nothing like the sheer volume of sermons, panel…
For the last few days, I’ve seen my social media timeline filled with grief expressed by my African American friends and colleagues. I’ve seen fellow church planters and pastors, with whom I’ve attended many a conference and training, expressing their emotional exhaustion in the face of the killing of yet another black man, the killing...
Interpretation is, in the words of David Bosch, always a creative tension between text and context. There are no neutral or abstract interpretations of Scripture. How then do we read and interpret Scripture in the context of a county like South Africa, with such a rigidly racialised past and a vastly unequal economic and racial present? In this post we will explore the doctrine of Creation, grounding our theology in…
Racial idolatry make promises it cannot keep, asking us to rely on that which only God can give. The idol of whiteness promises that white hegemony will produce stable, reliable and fruitful leadership but leads always to disfunction and division. Mono-cultural or homogenous churches in racialized societies perpetuate racism. Racial idols are fiercely protected by a deeper theological defensiveness.
Isiphambano exists because the fierce urgency of now is upon us. It is past time to stand up and declare that the gospel is a word which speaks to the injustice and the inequalities of our land in a way that no other system is able to nor wishes to. It is past time that we examine our addiction to power and privilege. It is past time that we begin…
Makhanda Nxele. Remember that name Questions linger whether the inciting incident where people were forcibly removed from Clifton beach last month was an instance of racism masquerading as concern about crime or simply a misunderstood but legitimate response to crime. There are also questions whether the subsequent cleansing ceremony itself was properly done according to African customs, or whether it is an instance of the weaponization of African culture for…
Just Preach the Gospel? If the current socio-political climate of our country is anything to go by, our Christian answers to these issues might prove to be a little bit more complex. Not to mention our colonial and Apartheid past which has proven that unless our preaching is more intentional, following the example set by Christ in the Sermon on the Mount, preaching ‘the gospel’ is simply not enough.