I am very sure that the phrase “Jesus Christ of Africa” will raise a few eyebrows. The Savior of the world had many accolades and you may be quick to say that “Jesus Christ of Africa” was not part of it.
However there is a crucial role Africa played in the life of our Lord Jesus which is worth mentioning. More so important in this age to enable us, who are called to be the light and the salt of the earth to understand the times and move in accordance to what God requires of us.
The Bible gives an account of the baby Jesus, whose life was threatened by the envy of old King Herod. Herod was scared that he would lose his kingdom to the newly born King of the Jews. When the wise men from the East approached Herod about the star they had seen, he knew he had to act fast in order to “secure” his Kingdom.
So as history tells it, Herod instructed soldiers to go to the town of Bethlehem and all its surrounding environs to kill all new born babies.
Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men.-
- Mat 2:16
God who knew the heart of Herod informed Joseph through an angel to flee the town of Bethlehem before the soldiers could get to them.Where they were instructed to go is theme of this blog. Your guess is as good as mine: Africa!!
“And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way. And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying,Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him. When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt:
- Mat 2:12-14
Have you wondered why God chose the continent of Africa? And to be specific, Egypt to offer protection for His son Jesus, when the little boy’s life was under threat?
For once Herod thought he had dealt with the threat. He was certain that he had ended the revolution of Christ prematurely! But when Herod died, Jesus and his family returned to the land for which had been assigned to him to grow up, start his ministry and build a legacy which will bless the world till the end of the earth.
I see the Africa continent as key in preserving the agenda and purposes of God concerning this earth. This fact is not mentioned much in popular circles but it is the truth.
It is even amazing that the prophets spoke about this very role Africa would play in the life of the Messiah hundreds of years before Jesus Christ was born.
“When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt” – Hosea 11:1
So how is this relevant in our days, you may be anxious to ask?
Christianity seems to be under attack especially in Europe. This continent once birthed great revivalists like John Wesley, Charles Spurgeon, George Muller, Smith Wigglesworth, Martin Luther King, just to name a few. Today Europe has nothing to show for the move of God it once birthed.
The attacks vary from raw terror and oppression, cold heartedness manifesting in the form of atheism, legislation of weird laws which contradicts the very fabric of family and society by Governments, etc.
Christianity is in trying times, the dark forces like Herod, seems to be winning at this stage. In Europe, Cathedrals which once hosted Christian revivals are now being sold to be used as mosques and entertainment centers.
Below are excerpts about the worrying decline of the Christian faith in Europe
Overall, at least 10,000 churches have been closed in Britain since 1960, including 8,000 Methodist churches and 1,700 Anglican churches. Another 4,000 churches are set to be closed by 2020, according to Christian Research, an organization that tracks religious trends in Britain.By contrast, there are now more than 1,700 official mosques in Britain, many converted from former churches. In addition, there are an estimated 2,000 Muslim prayer halls and unknown thousands of unofficial mosques in garages or warehouses scattered throughout the country.Islam is set to displace Christianity in Britain even further in the years ahead. The number of Muslims in Britain is forecast to double to 5.5 million, or 8% of the total British population, by 2030, according to the Washington, DC-based Pew Research Center.
. “the closing of Europe’s churches reflects the rapid weakening of the (Christian) faith in Europe, a phenomenon that is painful to both worshipers and others who see religion as a unifying factor in a disparate society.” By example, the Netherlands is projected to close 2/3 of its Roman Catholic churches in the next decade.
Pew Research Center data, presented by the Wall Street Journal, highlights the degree to which the European population reports no religious affiliation: France (28%), Germany (24.7%), Italy (12.4%), Netherlands (42.1%), and the United Kingdom (21.3%). By contrast, 16.4% of the United States population is unaffiliated with any religion
But it is interesting to note that on the continent of Africa, Christianity seemS to be blossoming. Revivals are sweeping across the continent and the gospel of Jesus Christ spreads like wide fire without any inhibitions.
The African continent has renewed love in the things of God and are not ashamed of it one bit.What I see happening one more time is God using the continent of Africa as a safe refuge to preserve his investment into the world, which is Christianity.
So that in due time God will send forth a revival from Africa across the continent of Europe to complete the works He started before the second coming of Christ.
Therefore those of us Africans who are privileged to be Christians should not take our roles in this eternal master plan for granted. Let’s do all we can to spread the gospel, affect the lives of many and build our faith in the word of God, pray and intercede for those continents who have lost touch with God until that revival breaks forth like gushing springs.
Therefore arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon you.
God bless you
From the desk of ROL
All images credit: Google images