|Central Africa for Christ|
Volume 3 1993
Four Frontline missionaries have returned from an intensive 10 week field outreach to Zambia and Malawi. They drove our two heavily laden trucks over 13 000km, distributing a ton of books, Gospel booklets, tracts and Bibles in six languages. They presented 12 Discipleship Training Seminars for pastors and evangelists, held film evangelism crusades in Mozambique refugee camps and conducted 70 evangelistic meetings, services and rallies including among the witchcraft dominated Maambwe people.
For most of these outreaches and leadership training courses our team worked in primitive rural areas without any electricity or plumbing. And without any of the conveniences that go along with such “luxuries”. Three of our missionaries also came down with malaria.
Diseases And Death
A recent report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) disclosed that infectious and parasitic diseases kill 17,5 million people worldwide each year. This includes 12,9 million children under five. Each year: about 7 million die from acute respiratory infections, 4 million from diarrhoeal diseases, 3 million from tuberculosis, almost 2 million from hepatitis B and over 1 million from malaria.
Their Graves Speak
This brought to mind the testimonies of thousands of missionaries who came to Africa in the last century despite the very real danger of death to disease, particularly to malaria. Yet even though they knew that there was no cure for malaria, at that time, they still came. They left home comforts, security, sanitary living conditions, friends and family behind to preach the Gospel in a wild and unexplored continent, and to inevitably die of little known diseases.
Not far from where David Livingstone died in Northern Zambia our mission team battled disease, demons and deteriorating roads. The grip of witchcraft was so severe that there were whole villages and districts which had no churches.
“As we drove up to Lake Tanganika it reminded me of what the Lake of Galilee must have been like in Jesus’ time. There were fishermen and merchants, rich and poor, young and old...We set up the public address system and began to speak to the people through our interpreter. Several hundre gathered each morning to hear the Word proclaimed. I’ve never seen such emptiness and hunger in peoples eyes. At the end of the message we stayed behind to pray and counsel with those who wanted to know more. Each morning men, women and children came in need of the Saviour. As mockers taunted and onlookers shied away these people fell down on their knees convicted of their sin and cried out to God. One man burned his witchcraft items in public profession of Christ.
“If there is one thing more than any other that makes one want to go, it is the fact that we are preaching over and over again to those
Grant wrote: “While preaching down at Mpulungu the Lord convicted a young man of his addiction to smoking and drinking. As he submitted to the Lord Jesus he was released of these addictions and the next day after a time of preaching he came up and testified as to how the Lord had delivered him from the urges of these addictions. Clearly he was a completely different man to the day before.
Strongholds Of Islam
Martha reports that “in Malawi, Islam seems to be the stronghold that Satan is using. Mosques are everywhere - especially along Lake Malawi. Islam is basically buying the people. Education is provided through the mosque for their children...Even in the most remote areas you can find beautifully constructed mosques. They are definitely seeking to dominate Malawi and they have the money to do it. This stronghold of Islam started with the Muslim slave traders that came in along Lake Malawi. The need for Muslim evangelism in this area is desperate.”