Posted by: stpowen | September 30, 2014

South Africa and Sola 5

Isaiah 61:1. ‘The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has appointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor’

Mrs Marprelate and I have been in South Africa on holiday for the last few weeks, hence the lack of new postings.

We have done all the regular things and have seen lions and leopards, hippos and rhinos, zebras and giraffes. South Africa is an amazingly beautiful country, and though we were warned about the crime and violence, we have found all the people we have met to be friendly and helpful. I was able to offer numerous folk Gideon New Testaments which were gratefully accepted. There seems to be a hunger for the word of God among many people.

Last Lord’s day I attended Goodwood Baptist Church in Cape Town. This is a modern church that holds to the 1689 Baptist Confession. The ministry was excellent; the young Pastor gave as fine an exposition of Eph. 5:22 as I have ever heard. You can find the church website at http://www.sola5.org/ The sermon will probably be posted on line by now and is well worth hearing. The church is placed in a prosperous suburb of the city and the congregation was mostly white. This is not a criticism; white folk need saving too, and the church is seeking to reach out into the surrounding areas and to plant new churches.

The Sola 5 website lists Reformed churches throughout southern Africa. It is a very useful resource for anyone thinking of visiting that area. There arre several churches listed in South Africa, almost as many in Zambia (thanks to Conrad Mbewe), but just one or two each in Namibia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Please pray for these churches; they are tiny islands of Christian truth in the midst of a great ocean of religious junk.

I also visited a ‘Township’ near Cape Town where thousands of people are living in the most appalling conditions. Unemployment is running at 40%; AIDS or HIV at around 35%; sanitary conditions are disgusting; many of the children do not attend school. I saw two churches in the township, both of which are doing valuable social work, but I am not confident that either of them preach the Gospel. The South African government is mired in scandal and corruption and seems to have lost the will to help its people. I will post some pictures in the next few days; they will make sombre viewing. There are dozens of similar townships up and down the country and millions of people living in the most wretched state.

Please pray for South Africa, especially that the Gospel may be preached to the poor.

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