The Place and Role of Women in the Church

The Place and Role of Women in the Church

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“Let a woman learn in silence with all submission. And I do not
permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but
to be in silence.”
1 Timothy 2:11-12

“For this reason, the woman ought to have a symbol of authority
on her head, because of the angels. Nevertheless, neither is man
independent of woman, nor woman independent of man, in the
Lord. For a woman came from man, even so man also comes
through woman, but all things are from God.”
1 Corinthians 11:10-12

“Obey those who rule over you and be submissive, for they watch
out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so
with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.”
Hebrews 13:17

No one serves, in any capacity in the world or in the Church for that matter, in isolation and free from authority structures. Human nature resents being told what to do because the very essence of sin is rooted in rebellion. This root is in all of us and we have to overcome it. There are then authority structures in our world that are the prerogative of men and others that are of women. For instance, women generally serve in nursing roles more than men do and they are exceptionally good at it. One does find male nurses within this field of activity, but they are generally required to submit to the authority of their female overseers.

The truth is, there are some roles in life where men have authority over women and others where women have authority over men because of the manner in which God constitutionally created them. Men generally serve in combatant roles because they are physically stronger than women. It was young men who stormed the beaches of Normandy on the 6th June 1944 and not young girls!

The Christian scriptures are clear about the fact that while men and women differ in their constitutional make up, they are equal in dignity and status before God their Creator. The one is not in anyway inferior to the other and shouldn’t be treated that way. Indeed, Paul affirms that in the believing community there is, “…neither male nor female (Galatians 3:28).” This means there should be no prejudice held when engaging men and women. They are equal in every way and should be afforded this dignity.

Having said this, it is true that the manner in which God made a woman means that she is ideally fitted to make up the deficiencies of her husband. She is made to help him be the man that God wants him to be and so she submits her wisdom, intellect, intuition and opinion to him. He needs help and God calls him to lead with her help (Genesis 2:18). Submission in the Bible is not one-way traffic. Meaning, that it is not only a man telling a woman what to do but also as a woman giving a man advice what to do in a spirit of gentleness (1 Peter 3:4-5). Men who turn this on its head and become authoritarian and abusive to their wives, and or to women in the Church, will not get their prayers answered (1 Peter 3:7). Men and women are “heirs together of the grace of life.” Men then have been equipped by God to lead and this is precisely why Jesus chose twelve men to be His Apostles. In fact, Jesus honored women, defended them, helped them and had them in His inner circle because He valued their spiritual intuition and appreciated their help and generosity, making possible His mission together with the disciples (Luke 8:2-3).

All this being true we should note the following:

1. That God has uniquely equipped men to assume teaching and leadership roles in the Church. However, the point of Paul’s statements in 1 Timothy is that women can teach and lead as long as they do so with male leadership recognition and support and do not usurp this authority structure. Just as a male nurse in a hospital ward must discharge all his duties in submission to the female leadership team. The male nurse is not allowed to do his own thing!

2. The Bible affirms and demonstrates that in Israel’s long journey there were always unique and strong female leaders who did great things for God; but always under authority. Deborah, Rahab, Miriam, Ruth, Esther and Mary easily come to mind in this respect.

3. The New Testament church was greatly blessed by male and female preaching teams such as Priscilla and Aquila (Romans 16:3-4). It is no doubt worth noting here that Priscilla is mentioned before her husband Aquila. Was she the dominant ministry gift? In fact, Paul refers to a woman called Junia, who together with her husband Andronicus, he calls “of note among the apostles” (Romans 16:7). (See footnote) Then there are the four daughters of Philip who were recognized as prophets (Acts 21:8-9). This of course means that they were part of the “gift ministries” of the ascended Christ recorded in Ephesians four verses eleven and twelve. Paul also writes about Euodia and Syntyche, two women who served with him in the preaching of the Gospel (Philippians4:2-3).Mary, the mother of Jesus, was continually in the company of the early leaders of the Church and the non-canonical writings of the early Church confirm that she played a very active role in the development and growth of the Church (Acts 1:14). To suggest then that women cannot share in the gift ministries of the Church and should not be preaching in our pulpits is just wrong and a contradiction of scripture.

It is certainly true that when women assert themselves without due recognition of the male authorities in the Church, they are disruptive, can be led into deception and more dangerous still, into a Jezebel spirit; all of which I have witnessed in my long years of Christian ministry (Revelation 2:20). But equally I have encountered deceived men in leadership who became authoritarian and dominating and they too brought a spirit of deception into the body of Christ (Titus 3:9-11). Diotrephes written about in 3 John was just such an individual as he loved the place of pre-eminence (3 John 9). The truth is, the abuse of God-given roles is rampant in the Church today and it all comes down to a problem with authority structures. According to Paul, Eve moved out of her covering of authority and instead of deferring to Adam she gave into the deception of the Devil. The original language of 1 Timothy 2:14 demonstrates that while Eve was deceived Adam sinned willfully because he knew better and consequently God held him accountable for the original sin and not Eve. Scripture then states, “As in Adam all die…” and not, “As in Eve all die” … (1 Corinthians 15:22).

4. In Paul’s day there were also cultural problems in that throughout the Roman Empire women who went around uncovered were actually prostitutes looking for business. Women in the Church, feeling the liberty that Christian teaching gave them, began to discard head coverings thus potentially bringing the church into conflict with the community. Paul writes to correct this as it would cause outsiders to stumble and bring the Church into disrepute. He urgently needs to rectify this matter and thus tells them that, though they may disagree, this is the “custom” that all the churches embrace (1 Corinthians 11:16). In fact, to reinforce this “custom” he notes that even angels recognize the divine sphere in which they live and appropriately respond to it by covering themselves (1 Corinthians 11:10). We sometimes have to submit to the culture to win it for Christ. Today head coverings are no longer an issue; thank God!

Also, the early Church adopted a Synagogue type of structure which meant that men and women were separated in the services. Consequently, the women would sometimes disrupt the meetings by calling out to their husbands for theological clarification. Paul brought this practice to an end (1 Corinthians 14:34-35) and so it is also important to point out that the command, given by Paul in 1 Timothy 2:11-12, that women should be silent in the Church, is in fact not the correct interpretation of the text. The original language is more correctly translated as “settle down” and not, “be silent”. That is, that women should not be disruptive in the meetings and settle down and, if we doubt it, then we should take note of the fact that the same word that is translated as “silent” in 1 Timothy 2:11-12 is used in 2 Thessalonians 3:12 where it is translated as “work in quietness” or “settle down.” Paul’s real concern was that all things in the gatherings of the local churches should be done “decently and in order” (1Corinthians 14:40).

5. It is thus worth noting that there have been and are great women ministries in the Church of Jesus. I have known and worked with such women and have been greatly enriched by their powerful pulpit and leadership ministries. Who can doubt that Corrie ten Boom was a huge blessing to the people of God and to the Jewish people and what of Kathryn Kuhlman, Ruth Ward Heflin, a powerful healing evangelist, Christine Darg, Gwen Shaw, Amy Carmichael, an extraordinary missionary to China, Joni Eareckson Tada who though disabled led thousands of people to Jesus, Christine Caine who rescued thousands of people from human trafficking, Francis Willard, Henrietta Mears, a great preacher in her own right who mentored great men like Bill Bright of Campus Crusade for Christ and of course Aimee Semple McPherson the founder of the Four Square Church of God and who led hundreds of thousands of people to Jesus. We could go on and on, the list is never ending.

It is worth noting here that when I studied theology, at a well-respected Reformed Theological establishment, half the student population were women. The majority of these became missionaries to Africa, Asia, the Middle East and the Indian Ocean Islands. The term missionary is a nice way to disguise the fact that they were actually Apostles going out into the world because the term missionaries means “those sent out”; the exact same definition of the term Apostle!

Conclusion

No paper like this would be complete without referring to the fact that scripture calls upon women to submit to their husbands (Ephesians 5:21-33). We have already noted what this means but it is certainly worth pointing out that God calls men to lay down their lives for their wives as Christ did for the church. This means that they must be given to extreme sacrifice for their wives and it is love like this that will encourage women to willingly and happily submit to their husbands.

All in all, then, Women can teach, preach and even become Apostles in the Church of Jesus but they do have to minister in a sphere that is mainly occupied by men. Hence, they must discharge their remarkable ministry gifts in recognition of this God-given authority structure. Most important of all is that male leadership teams should not be authoritarian, corrective and restrictive but rather encouraging, edifying and upbuilding. This is why God gives us positions of authority, to build up and edify (2 Corinthians 10:8). We rob the Church of a great blessing if we close our pulpits to godly women who have been called of God and anointed to preach.

The peace of Jesus be with you!

Malcolm Hedding


Contributing Editors:

Dr. Peter Watt-The General Chairman of the Assemblies of God of Southern Africa
Dr. David Elms-Founding Minister Emeritus of Kingsway Christian Fellowship, Liverpool England
Rev. Graham Jefferson- Minister Emeritus of Word of Life Baptist Church, Durrington England

Note; with reference to Romans 16:7:

Early church writers and scholars translated one of the persons referred to here by Paul as Junia, which is absolutely correct since the ending of the name is in the female designation. For 1900 years every translation that came out did the same but in the 20th Century, translators, all of which were mainly male, unilaterally and without textual basis, changed the name to a masculine ending meaning that it became Junias. This was wrong, in fact entirely wrong, and it was only done because they would not accept that a woman could be an Apostle. In other words, they arrogantly inserted their prejudice into the inspired text! In recent years this unjustified edit has been corrected in keeping with the original text, which is beyond dispute, and so Junia, the female “Apostle of note”, took her rightful place again in scripture.

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Days of Testing

Days of Testing

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“But as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with
the gospel, even so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God
who tests our hearts.”
1 Thessalonians 2:4

“Do not fear any of those things which you are about to suffer.
Indeed, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison,
that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days.
be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.”
Revelation 2:10

The God of the bible has a great plan for your life since His word declares that in Jesus, He “created you for good works that He prepared beforehand that you should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10). The truth is, we do not have the spiritual capacity to walk into our God-given destiny and so God has to teach us about our real spiritual capacity and through a process of testing strengthen us. Paul is clear that before he moved into his God-given destiny, he had to be approved by God who put his heart to the test.

So, there is no doubt that days of testing are upon us. God puts His people to the test as He did with Paul and Peter and even Jesus. These “tests” are designed to determine the nature of our commitment to truth and whether our characters are dependable, stable, and useful to God, even under fire. No one escapes this principle in the Christian life. The Lord God of Heaven knows exactly what’s in our hearts, but He brings it out into the open for our instruction by the process of testing. We always think that we are stronger spiritually than we in fact are. These times of testing invariably involve times of great difficulty and our response to them teaches us something about ourselves that we didn’t know! In fact, Paul writes that we are “appointed to this.”

“…that no one should be shaken by these afflictions, for you
yourselves know that you were appointed to this.”
1 Thessalonians 3:3

The “testings of God” always have to do with truth. That is, the truth of God revealed through His Word. This truth cannot be bent, changed or adapted to our liking. It remains forever and is above His name and must be built into our lives (James 1:21). And Paul stated that we must allow the Word of God to “richly dwell in us “(Colossians 3:16). Jesus said quite simply, “Thy word is truth” (John 17:17). It is up to us to live by it or reject it and we shall never fully enter into God’s plan for our lives if we do not live in the Bible day and night (Psalm 1:4). A good devotional exercise for us all to do would be to read, in one sitting, Psalm 119. This will give us a very good idea as to how important it is to know God’s Word. The grace and patience of God always leads us to its truth but there comes a time when we have to demonstrate, through a time of testing, that we have truly received the Word of God and have built it into our lives in such a way that our actions flow out from it . Actually, to be “put to the test” means to be tempted. The word temptation in the original language means to be “put to the proof”. This invariably involves being exposed to the Devil!!!

Jesus was “put to the proof” when He was led by the Spirit of God into the wilderness to be tempted by the Devil:

“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted
by the devil.”
Matthew 4:1

Jesus’ temptations were not fictional or merely theoretical. No, as man he had to prove that He was perfect and sinless and therefore qualified to enter upon His God-given mission in life. He overcame the choices presented to him by the Devil by standing on the Word of God (Matthew 4:1-11).

Also, Jesus gave the Devil permission to prove Peter or “sift him like wheat”:
“And the Lord said, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you,
that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your
faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen
your brethren.”
Luke 22:31-32

Peter was a big mouth and therefore “cashed cheques with his mouth that his body could not pay.” Upon hearing that Jesus was going up to Jerusalem to die he loudly asserted that he would do the same. He was indeed sincere, but actually, sincerely wrong because he did not have the spiritual capacity to do what he boldly claimed. Through a process of testing he found out who he really was and was enabled to take stock, repent, be strengthened and then become what God wanted him to be. It will be the same for you and me.

Two things are clear from this:
1. The Devil cannot attack you when and how he pleases…and;
2. The Devil can be an instrument, in the hand of Jesus, to help you grow!!

When we are put to the test, or proved as Christians, the Devil can do nothing to you other than, as he did with Jesus, give you an option or choice; the decision will be entirely yours to make. Peter was presented with the same option and ended up cursing and denying that he even knew Jesus. What did he learn? That he wasn’t the strong Christian that he thought he was and was not ready for ministry. So, James writes:

“Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been
approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has
promised to those who love him.

“But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires
and enticed.”
James 1:12,14

So then, the “testings of God “always have to do with three things:
1. Materialism or things
2. Status or self-importance…and,
3. Cravings or self-indulgence

The Bible lists these as follows:
1. The lust of the eyes (materialism)
2. Lust of the flesh (self-indulgence) …and,
3. The boastful pride of life (self-importance)

Note: 1 John 2:16
In the wilderness “proving’s” Jesus faced the exact three things and responded according to the Word of God and thus proved that He was beyond sin and indeed perfect. Adam on the other hand faced the exact same three things in the Garden of Eden and failed because he doubted the Word of God. All that the Devil said to him was, “Has God said……? According to Jesus, the faithful Church is the one that keeps His Word (Revelation 3:8). That is, yes, God has said!

Note:
The extent of our ability to overcome the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life determines our usefulness to God. The testings of God then are designed to prove if our lives are built upon the Word of the Living God and that consequently our characters are dependable, stable and useful to Him. There are many Christians who have failed in this respect because, having not built the Word of God into their lives, they make huge decisions that contradict the Word of God, that are in all respects life changing and that sideline their usefulness to God for years. Remember Jacob!

So, Don’t be surprised at the fiery trial you are going through. Read carefully what Peter has to say about this:

“Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which
is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you.”
1 Peter 4:12

Be sure that you noted his refrain “to try you”, because God is putting you to the test through strange trials.
Don’t doubt that God is with you. Again, note what Peter has to say:

“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be,
you have been grieved by various trials.”
1 Peter 1:6

Once again, be sure to note the refrain, “if need be”. That is, your trials are needed so that God can test the nature of your faith and commitment to Him. He knows the nature of your commitment but you do not and so He will help you to find out!

Stand on the Word of God. That is, God is looking for men and women who will “under fire” always make decisions that flow out of the Word of God embedded deep within them. Jesus said:

“Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds
from the mouth of God.”
Matthew 4:4

Stand in the place of prayer. In the Garden of Gethsemane, the Disciples were all over the place spiritually and Jesus saw their weakness and spiritual inability. He consequently responded by saying the following:

“When He came to the place, He said to them, “Pray that you
may not enter into temptation.”
Luke 22:40

What He actually meant was, “Pray that you may not enter into the trap of temptation.” That is, that you may not make the wrong choice or decision. We must be a praying people.

Conclusion
Above all remember that our confidence; in God’s loving care for us, and in His sovereignty, will get us safely through these times of testing. Because He will not allow us to be tempted beyond that which we are able to bear (1 Corinthians 10:13). Even though from time to time, like Peter, we will fail, He will pick us up, strengthen us and help us to fulfill our destiny. It all comes down to how much we love Him and our love for Him is measured by the degree to which we keep His word (John 14:15). Amen.

Malcolm Hedding

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The Fourth of July 2019

The Fourth of July 2019

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“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…”
The Declaration of Independence July 4th, 1776

The New York Times just put out an article with a video questioning “American Exceptionalism.” They undermined this concept by seeking to point out that, as a people, Americans are no better, and indeed, are a lot worse than other peoples in the spheres of education, racial relations and science etc. For them then the concept of American Exceptionalism has to do with race as if this term asserts that Americans are just better than other people. This whole understanding of American Exceptionalism, as put forward by the New York Times, is actually based on a false narrative, is not based on historical fact and is just a lie! However, people believe this stuff because, quite simply put, they do not know their history.

It is to be noted that the Declaration of Independence clearly states that all men are created equal and therefore this undermines the notion that American Exceptionalism is based on race. It is this declaration that empowered Martin Luther King Jr in his fight for black civil rights in the 1960s and because of this he was guaranteed victory.

A plaque on the walls of the Holocaust Museum in Israel, called Yad Vashem, states, “Remembrance is the road to redemption, but forgetfulness is the road to exile.” How true this is, as a people who have forgotten their origins and history will eventually abandon them and lose the freedoms that were once purchased for them at a great price by their founders. This is happening in America today.

American Exceptionalism is to be understood by this; that by the grace and hand of God, and because of the Great Awakening (An amazing Christian revival led by George Whitfield and Jonathan Edwards in the original 13 States), the Founding Fathers crafted a form of governance, called the Constitution in 1787 that was unique to the world because it guaranteed freedom and equal dignity for everyone. This Constitution sets out three spheres of government and thereby puts checks and balances in place that would make it well nigh impossible for the freedoms won in the War of Independence with England to be taken away by a dictator. The Bill of Rights (The first Ten Amendments) re-enforced this idea and gave Americans additional protections from abuse by leaders. In fact, the idea of three houses of government; the Congress, Judiciary and the Executive, came directly from Isaiah 33:22:

“For the Lord is our Judge (Judiciary), the Lord is our Lawgiver (Congress),
the Lord is our King (President)…”

Also, Liberty Bell has inscribed upon it a verse of scripture taken from the book of Leviticus that states:

“…….Proclaim liberty throughout all the land to all
its inhabitants….”
Leviticus 25:10

It is because of this Constitution that Americans could build a nation that became a “shining light on a hill” since it freed a people, like none other on earth, to go forth and fully exploit their potential; free from government restraint and abuse. American Exceptionalism has nothing to do with race but everything to do with freedom; and the history of America proves it. It is for this reason that all those seeking high office in the Federal Government have to swear allegiance to the Constitution. A Constitution that is in every way Exceptional, but sadly today, continuously under attack.

So, don’t be fooled by the New York Times or anyone else as American Exceptionalism does exist, we have all been blessed by it and rightly do we rejoice in it on the fourth of July.

God bless America!

Malcolm Hedding
A soon-to-be-proud American Citizen

ISRAEL – LAND AND PEOPLE

ISRAEL – LAND AND PEOPLE

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“I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you. I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojourning, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.”
Genesis 17:7-8

The debate that rages over Israel’s modern day restoration is undoubtedly a heated one and there are good, honest Christians on both sides of “the divide”. It is crucial and important for us to make this observation because it is highly dangerous to treat each other with disdain and disrespect because we do not agree on this issue. Our salvation is not regulated by issues like this, but by our personal repentance and acceptance of Jesus as Lord and Saviour, all based on His finished work on the cross.

The Heart of the Matter
Some Christians see no biblical significance in the modern day restoration of Israel. For them the State of Israel is just like any other. The national destiny of the Jewish people in the “Promised Land” has been lost since the time of Christ because of their rejection of His Messianic credentials. They believe this even though the Scriptures affirm that the promise to them in this regard is an everlasting one! Consequently the church is exclusively the “New Israel of God” (The new Promised Land) and the only hope for all men, be they Jew of Gentile, is the acceptance of the Gospel.

From a certain perspective I must say that the latter statement is true. There is indeed “no other name give among men, under heaven, by which we can be saved”. We cannot and should not be dual covenant by belief! (Acts 4:12)

But is this the whole truth? I think not. The heart of the matter or the real issue is; has the everlasting promises of God in the Abrahamic Covenant, bequeathing the land of Canaan to the Jewish people, been revoked by God Himself? And if so, what evidence of this “revoking” is in the Bible? In other words, the debate is about what one thinks of the Abrahamic Covenant. This alone is the heart of the matter!

The Nature of the Covenant
First mentioned in Genesis 12:1-3 and reinforced time and time again throughout all of Scripture mostly, in fact, in the New Covenant Scriptures, the Abrahamic Covenant sets aside a people and a land for the blessing of the nations. “In you all the nations of the earth will be blessed…” For the Apostle Paul this was one of the earliest proclamations of the Gospel (Galatians 3:8). Thus, the Abrahamic Covenant is that great covenant of the Bible that promises salvation to a world lost in sin. It is made with Abraham and his descendants after him (Genesis 17:7). It is, therefore, the covenant of God’s decision to save the world from sin and all the other great covenants of the Bible flow out of it. Consequently, John the Baptist and even Jesus come into the world because of the promises made to Abraham in this covenant (Luke 1:54-55; 72-75). The Jewish people, as Abraham’s descendants, are chosen as the servants of the covenant. In other words, the nation of Israel is not brought into existence as an end itself, but as a means to an end – the salvation of the world. They are the means by which God delivers His redemptive initiative to the world.

Jesus said, “salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22). Paul wrote that “they are the custodians of the oracles of God” and from them come the prophets, the giving of the law, the covenants and the Messiah who is God blessed forever” (Romans 3:1-2; Romans 9:1-5).

It is truly hard to believe that the covenant has been replaced in the light of all this, because if it has, then the decision to bless the whole world with salvation has also been replaced!!

The Nature of the Debate
The debate over Israel’s modern day restoration is over the continuing power and existence of the Abrahamic Covenant. In other words, has this covenant been abolished or reconstructed and if so, what biblical evidence is there for it?

Firstly, the “abolitionist theory”, (the total removal of the covenant) is not possible because of the New Covenant. For instance, in Galatians 3 we are told that “if we are Christ’s, then we are Abraham’s children according to the promise” (Galatians 3:29). Moreover, Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law “so that the blessing of Abraham” might come upon us by faith (Galatians3:14). The writer of the book of Hebrews insists that the wavering messianic believers can trust God and His promises in the New Covenant because he is faithful, completely, to His promises made in the Abrahamic Covenant (Hebrews 6:13-20). Hence, there is absolutely no hint whatsoever that this covenant has been in any way disempowered, replaced, or abolished. On the contrary, it is affirmed and established, and this after Israel’s rejection of Jesus’ Messianic credentials! Indeed, in Galatians 3 Paul argues that it cannot be annulled (Galatians 3:17) and in Romans 3:3-4 Paul clearly states that Israel’s rejection of Jesus has not in any way altered the faithfulness of God to them. Finally, in Romans 11 he argues that Jewish unbelief has not removed from them God’s calling and purpose (Romans 11:11, 29).

Secondly, then there is the more popular “reconstructionist theory”, otherwise known as Replacement theology, that claims that the Abrahamic Covenant has been altered or adjusted because of Jewish unbelief. This is an argument from silence, but it must be made by those who see no significance in Israel’s modern day restoration to what was once called Palestine. Given the New Testament evidence, that is overwhelming, they inadvertently accuse God of lying (Romans 3:4)! A covenant that promises the world salvation and promises everlasting possession of the land of Canaan to the Jewish people is not trustworthy! This is truly amazing when one considers that John the Baptist and Jesus came into the world because of this covenant and that our embracing of the Lord Jesus as Lord and Saviour places us in the promises made in it. The God we serve does not lie (Titus 1:2; Numbers 23:9) Actually, according to Romans 15:8, Jesus came to confirm the promises made to the fathers and not to reconstruct or replace them. For the reconstructionists the words of Paul in Galatians three, attesting to the promise of God in Abraham, as applying to the “seed” (Christ) and not to the “seeds” (many) is taken to support their reconstructionist thesis. They are wrong because the Abrahamic Covenant makes a promise to both; the seed, who is Christ (Genesis 22:18) and the seeds, who are Abraham’s descendants (Genesis 17:7-8). David affirms this in Psalm 105:7-12. Paul’s point in Galatians three is that God’s ultimate plan of salvation, brought to the world by the people of Israel, is appropriated by faith in Jesus and not by the works of the law (Galatians 3:15-18).

The Nature of Evidence
It has to be acknowledged by all in this debate that Jesus returns visibly and physically to Jerusalem (Acts 1:11; Zechariah 14:4). That is, in terms of the context of scripture, to the Old City of Jerusalem. Indeed, in a clear forthright manner, Jesus links this return to Jerusalem and to Jewish acceptance of His Messianic credentials (Matthew 23:39). He also Himself stated, in His Olivet Discourse, that one of the signs of His return is the return of the Jews to East Jerusalem after a global exile (Luke 21:24). When we add to this the interesting conversation that He had with His disciples on the Mt. of Olives concerning the restoration of the Kingdom to Israel, as recorded in Acts one and verse six, the picture becomes clear. To be honest the theological gymnastics that some theologians perform in their quest to negate the plain meaning of this text are indeed nothing short of bizarre. When scripture obviously and plainly challenges our positions, our response should be to honour it and adjust our thinking and not to attempt to negate the text. It is thus abundantly clear to me that a latter day return of the Jews, after 70 A.D. to Jerusalem, is envisaged by scripture! On what grounds? Clearly as the New Testament everywhere affirms, on the grounds of an everlasting promise made to them in Abraham (Hebrews 6:13-20).

Those embracing the “reconstructionist”, or a replacement view of the Abrahamic Covenant not only have to grapple with the weight of evidence in the New Treatment, but also with the weight of evidence in the Old Treatment. Exile and correction are always followed up with a promise of restoration (Amos 9:9-15). On what grounds? The answer is the promises of God given in the Abrahamic Covenant. (Haggai 3:14-15; Psalms 105:7-15; Deuteronomy 30:1-10)

It is precisely here that the “reconstructionists” misuse Scripture. That is, in contradiction of the context of the Old Testament Scriptures, which in most cases, in this regard, is literal they affirm that the passages, in this regard, have to be read allegorically. In short, they wrest from scripture its own authority and they assume to themselves this authority and therefore they will decide what Scripture means. As a consequence they debunk any literal interpretation of scripture pointing to a physical restoration of the Jews to the land of Canaan and instead assert that the Church is now the new Promised Land or Canaan. This assertion is totally unacceptable as a method of exegesis. The truth is; we are not literalists or spiritualists (the allegorical method of interpretation) but “contextualists.” The context of Scripture will alone decide our exegesis of it. If we follow this erroneous method of exegesis to its logical end we can ¬¬¬equally assume that Jesus’ death on the cross was not literal! In fact an early church heresy did precisely this. There is nothing new.

The Nature of the Divide
While the Abrahamic Covenant promises salvation to the world (Galatians 3:8) and land to Israel as an everlasting possession, the Mosaic Covenant (Moral Law), that flows out of it, demands from Israel that:

1. She lives out the light, revelation and blessing of God that she gives to the world (Exodus 19:1-6).
2. She lives out the heavenly demands of dispensing justice and righteousness to those living in her land (Micah 6:5-8; Exodus 23:11; Isaiah 5:7).

Failure in these two areas would lead to correction, judgment and exile, but not loss of possession, only loss of domicile! In all honesty, Christian Zionists fail in these areas. That is, they stress the promises of the Abrahamic Covenant but ignore the commands of the Mosaic Covenant or Moral Law. They thus stray into political Zionism. Israel’s spiritual condition matters to God and determines her borders.

How sad it is that the church can never find balance. We always think that “the other side” is wrong when in reality we are both wrong and both right. Scripture is therefore clear that Israel’s possession of the land of Canaan is unconditional and everlasting (Exodus 32:13) but her domicile (privilege of living on the land of Canaan) is conditional. That is, conditional upon her righteous behaviour. This includes treating the stranger with respect and justice (Jeremiah 22:1-5). Two devastating exiles in her history have proved this point well. In this regard the Church and the Christian Zionist world should find its voice. For Arabs, Palestinians, Christians and other minorities living in the Holy Land this is the major issue they have with Christian Zionists. The failure of Christian Zionists to address these issues has prevented these minority groups from hearing their message about Israel. But equally, the failure of Christians who champion these issues to address the consequences of the Abrahamic Covenant adequately has diminished their voice in the Jewish world. The truth is; we all need to “grow up” and be more balanced.

In the End
In the end Scripture affirms that Israel will exist forever as a nation before God and He will not cut her off because of all that she has done (Jeremiah 31:35-37). Scripture clearly implies that her long historical journey will be characterised by two exiles and two returns (Isaiah11:11). She will finally return a second time in unbelief (Ezekiel 36:24-28) and, through a process of affliction and correction, be spiritually recovered (Hosea 5:14-15; 6:1-3). Paul saw Israel’s interlude of unbelief as partial and as a time of bringing God’s salvation in Christ to the Gentiles. When this full number of Gentiles have come in then all Israel will be saved and the Deliverer (Saviour) will “come out of Zion” (Romans 11:25-27). It is surely no co-incidence that we have now witnessed the second return of the Jewish people from exile. We are all “caught” in this unique transition point in history trying to make sense of it all. This is much like the early Church trying to make sense of Gentile inclusion in the Church. It is a challenging process requiring grace and much love from those who tackle it. It is deeply troubling when Christians use Scripture as a weapon against each other. I do not write in this vain. I believe that in the end we must all acknowledge that there are great Christians on both sides of this debate. I have set forth my position in this devotional paper. A position I believe to be true. More true than all of this however, is faith, hope and love, but the greatest of these is love.

Malcolm Hedding


Notes:
(1) Given the emphasis in this paper on the Abrahamic Covenant it should be clear to the reader that most mainstream Christian Zionists do not support the modern day restoration of Israel because of eschatological consideration but because of promises that God made to Abraham 4,000 years ago. Christian Zionists are not “thirsting for Armageddon”, as some assert, but rather affirming the efficacy of a Covenant that holds a significant place in all of scripture.

(2) A well know theologian that spends much of his life and ministry seeking to debunk the position of Christian Zionists recently stated, in reference to Israel’s modern day restoration, that the “jury is still out” concerning whether this restoration has biblical significance or not. Quite honestly then, given his doubt, he should stay out of this area of ministry altogether because if the “jury comes in” and affirms the biblical significance of Israel’s modern day restoration, he will be caught out having resisted God on this matter. This is a highly challenging area of ministry and we should all remember that we, who have mounted this stage as teachers, will incur a greater judgment (James 3:1).

Days of Remembrance and Celebration

Days of Remembrance and Celebration

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“Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump,
since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover,
was sacrificed for us.”
1 Corinthians 5:7

“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with
one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from,
as of a rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they
were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of
fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with
the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 2:1-3

Naturally there is a dynamic connection between Passover and Pentecost in the Bible. These two great pilgrim festivals essentially remind us that the pathway or door to the Kingdom of God is via the spilt blood of a Lamb. Paul writes that Christ our Passover Lamb has been sacrificed and thus we are delivered from sin, the wrath of God, the devil and reconciled to God. On the other hand, Pentecost reminds us of the power of the kingdom of God. This power is expressed in God’s word and in the infilling of His Spirit. We are to feed on the Word of God and be clothed with the Spirit of God (Matthew 4:4; Luke24: 49; Acts1:4-5).

Al this means four things:
1. A coming day of consummation

That is, there must be a second appearing of the Messiah to respond to humankind’s response to His death, burial and resurrection. This is what Paul stated as he preached in Athens in that, as he put it…” God will judge the world by the man Christ Jesus” who has been raised from the dead (Acts17: 30-31; Hebrews 9:28). In short, the world is now without excuse and will have to “square up” to the claims of Jesus of Nazareth. These claims will be verified by His second coming. The world will be humbled because, “every eye will see Him even those who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen” (Revelation 1:7)

2. A present day of victory

That God in Christ died for His world means that sin in us can and should be overcome by the power of God that works within us (2Peter1: 2-3). This power is greater than anything in the world and can overcome our unrighteousness (1John 4:4). Paul wrote that sin, of any kind, should not have dominion over us (Romans 6:14)! However, the life of Jesus has to be appropriated! This means that we do not wait for God in Christ to work within us but rather count on the Holy Spirit to do the work as we set out to obey God’s word. Obedience is the doorway to unleashing the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives (Romans 6:16). For this reason, Paul says that we should put off the old man and put on Christ (Ephesians4: 20-24). Victory over sin is not “rubbed off” us by praying etc. but by acting on God’s word. James reminds us of this when he exhorts us to be doers of the word of God and not simply hearers (James 1:21).

3. A day to encourage one another

Christians must and should belong to a local church; not a perfect church but a local one! It is in this context that the fullness of Christ’s life and presence is experienced. The Bible clearly teaches that to follow Christ begins with a personal decision, but this personal decision is followed through with a commitment to regularly associate with God’s people. Paul affirms that “by one Spirit we have all been baptized into one body….and made to drink of the one Spirit” (1Corinthians 12:13). The early church enjoyed “a together life” that included prayer, Bible study, fellowship and breaking of bread (Acts 2:42). Christians that isolate themselves from the local expression of Jesus’ people place themselves in serious spiritual danger! We should not and must not neglect the gathering together of the saints (Hebrews 10:25).

4. A day of kindness and appreciation

The great pilgrim Feasts of the Bible are given to Israel in their original context. They belong to Israel or, as Paul states in Romans 15:27, we share in Israel’s “spiritual things!” God has shown us mercy (Romans15:9) and brought us into His banqueting house of love through the nation of Israel and her glorious Messiah (Romans 9:1-5). Passover, Pentecost and Tabernacles, all rich in describing God’s redemptive acts, have become ours as well. We rejoice in God’s saving love and also recognize that we are indebted to Israel and the Jewish people (Romans15:27). Indebtedness means that you have an obligation to the one that has blessed and enriched your life. We should be careful to discharge this obligation for God will bless those who love and care for His ancient people. This is truly the abiding lesson that we learn from Cornelius and the Roman Centurion. Both were touched by the hand of God because they were kind and gracious to the Jewish people (Acts 10:22,31; Luke 7:1-5). Sadly, the wider Church in the world has not well learned this lesson.

May your celebration of Passover and Pentecost be filled with God’s love, joy and peace.

Malcolm Hedding.

Anti-Semitism

Anti-Semitism

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“Moreover the word of the Lord came to
Jeremiah, saying, “Have you not considered
what these people have spoken, saying, ‘The
two families which the Lord has chosen, He
has also cast them off’? Thus they have
despised My people, as if they should no
more be a nation before them.”
Jeremiah 33:23-24

As revolt and chaos spreads through the Middle East it turns out that the only stable Democracy in the region is Israel and indeed that the Apartheid State of today is not Israel but the Arab nations around her and even the Palestinian Authority. These nations are imploding with discontent and violence as people take to the streets protesting their lack of freedoms and their subjugation under the hands of thugs, murderers, despots and leaders who have made themselves rich on their backs! Syria, as we once knew it, is no more and, as the country continues to burn, 240,000 of its citizens lie dead, two million more are wounded, displaced and maimed for life and, because of its smoldering ruins, more than a million more have invaded Europe. Among these refugee invaders are jihadists who are determined to bring chaos and mayhem to the capitals of Europe, as we have witnessed in Paris, London, Brussels, and Munich and beyond. Christians throughout the Nineveh Plain have followed Jesus to the cross and the real barbaric face of radical Islam has been laid bare for all to see. Adding to this awful toxic brew is the arrival of the Russian military machine in the region and the mustering of Iranian/Hezbollah forces on the eastern side of Syria near to the Golan Heights. We should all take note and prepare ourselves to witness greater upheavals in the region in the near future and even the possibility of war.

Israel by contrast is a shining example of freedom, the rule of law, an independent judiciary and the freedom of the press and yet the educational institutions of our world have decided to boycott Israeli academics and to annually hold what is called, “Israel Apartheid Week”. The Republic of Ireland and the European Union are now moving to boycott and label Israeli products made in Judea and Samaria. Nothing is more hypocritical, and indeed shameful, as this. While totalitarian dictators, throughout the Arab world, suppress their people and even murder them in huge numbers on the streets of their capitals, these European technocrats, and those of the United Nations, constantly decide to focus on Israel and condemn her repeatedly. Sadly, many Church movements have also joined themselves to this hypocrisy. This is all part of a sinister plan to discredit Israel, delegitimize Israel and in the end dismantle Israel. Anti-Semitism is at work here for sure and it masquerades under the umbrella of the so called BDS movement. It is unbridled and unashamed and sadly attracts many followers and this is seen by the rapid rise of anti-Semitism in Europe just 75 years after millions of Jews were rounded up and murdered in their millions in its region.

We, who have been “washed” by the scriptures, recognize this evil disease that again and again seeks to impact the minds of people where it can flourish and grow. Sadly, this sickness is now invading the Democratic Party in America as in recent days we have witnessed newly inducted Congresswomen casting the age-old slurs of hatred at the Jewish community of the country. As in the United Kingdom and led by the leader of the Labor Party there, Jeremy Corbyn, there is now an attempt to mainstream ant-Semitism in the USA. Thankfully, we stand in its way and we will stand alongside Israel in her endless struggle to exist in a dark world. Jesus said, speaking of Israel, that, “This nation (generation) would not pass away until all things are fulfilled” (Matthew 24:34) and the Prophet Jeremiah declared that as long as the sun, moon and stars are in the firmament just so long would Israel exist as a nation before God (Jeremiah 31: 35-36).

The struggle will be a challenging and difficult one but we will stay the course because we have a God in Heaven who watches over Israel day and night (Psalm 121:4) and Who invites us into a place of dedicated prayer and intercession on her behalf (Isaiah 62:6-7). In the end the God of Israel will be glorified in the sight of the nations because He will arise, save and defend His people in a way that we never thought possible (Ezekiel 38:21-23) (Zechariah 12:1-9). Let us therefore take note of the anti-Israel antagonists and anti-Semites and let us arise to tell the truth about Israel and be faithful to God in defending the Jewish people and Israel from harm. The legacy of people like Corrie Ten Boom must live on in our hearts and be embraced.

Malcolm Hedding

The Festive Season – 2018

The Festive Season – 2018

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                                                “So teach us to number our days, that we may

                                                 gain a heart of wisdom”

                                                                                                Psalm 90:12

Dear Friends,

 Once again the Feast of Dedication (John 10:22), that of Christmas (Matthew 1:18-25) and that of a coming New Year are upon us. The years go by quickly and as this transpires we change bit by bit just like the seasons. Nothing is static; we are being driven along by the winds of time and there is precisely nothing that we can do about it. In reality we are small, finite and, as the Bible teaches us, a mere vapor. Scripture also states that we are like flowers that bloom for a moment and then fade away (1 Peter 1:24). Life is indeed fragile and interesting!

So, while we cannot change “the winds of time” we can embrace them in a way that they serve us and change us. Paul writes in his Ephesian letter that we are to “redeem the time” (Ephesians 5:15-16). The actual Greek language of the text means, “Buy it back.” Therefore we have to answer the question, “Does time control me or do I control time?” Or to put it another way, “Have we bought back the time allotted to us?” Our fading lives will never enjoy importance but they can and should become significant; and significance is something attributed to us by someone greater and bigger than ourselves. A soldier’s life gains significance when the President of his country awards him a Medal of Honor. Suddenly, by this award, what he did on the battlefield becomes special!

You will only gain real significance to the degree that the God of Israel knows you, recognizes you and gives you a Medal of Honor one day. This Medal will recognize that you served Him well on the battle-field of time. Apart from this your life will have absolutely no significance, no matter what noble cause you dedicate it to, and indeed it will have been a waste of time. The truth is: We are not to live like people who belong to time because we belong to eternity!

The Feast of Dedication, otherwise known as Hanukkah, reminds us of the holy exploits of those who lived in 167 BC who, because of their love for God, stood up against their Seleucid Greek persecutors. They only triumphed because of God’s supernatural help and thereby He honored their actions. This He did by performing a miracle by which the light of His presence in the rededicated Temple, symbolized by the Menorah, kept burning for eight days even though they only had sufficient oil for one. It took eight days to travel to the Galilee and back to retrieve the special Olive oil required for Temple ritual. The supernatural, eternal power of God has given their lives significance! Just think, two thousand and one hundred and eighty years later we still celebrate their lives.

Christmas reminds us that only God’s light, shining in our hearts by Jesus Christ (John 1:9), enables us to enjoy significance in this dark, uncertain and foreboding world. Jesus is the light of the world and as we live in His light we, though puny and weak, will enjoy significance and that of eternal life. We will all one day appear before Him and blessed will be those who receive a Medal of Honor (2 Corinthians 5:10). That is, the Medal of faithfulness; for on that day our lives will be scrutinized and then hopefully He will declare, “Well done good and faithful servant enter into the joy of your Lord.” What use are you making of the time allotted to you? A woman speaks of a vision that she had of God’s throne where all of humanity was gathered before Him. One by one the names of each one were called out and then they came forward and were required to put their “stuff” before Him. This stuff was the proper use of their time while on earth! What “stuff” will you bring on that great day; if any? (1 Corinthians 3:11-15).

And then there is the arrival of the New Year, 2019, and with it all the resolutions we hope to keep as this calendar year roles on relentlessly. Most of these we will abandon very quickly and our old habits and ways will quickly set in but time will keep moving forward and it will age us and progressively limit our days on the earth (Ecclesiastes 12:1-5). We should all be mindful of this and it was for this reason that the Psalmist wrote,  “So teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” Wisdom is the ability to apply knowledge correctly and the “knowledge” we should all embrace is that of knowing God. The Apostle Peter, writing in his second epistle of a world that is in turmoil and great upheaval, concludes by saying, “… but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.”

I write to you, as one who cares for each and every one of you. All of you are important to God and He loves you without exception. So then, as we give ourselves to much merriment this Festive Season think on these things; for it is my desire and prayer that each one of your lives should embrace significance and make good use of the days allotted to them.

Malcolm Hedding

Christmas 2018

Christmas 2018

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“Behold, now is the accepted time; behold now
is the day of salvation.”
2 Corinthians 6:2

“Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of
Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s
elect and acknowledgment of the truth which
accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life
which God, who cannot lie, promised before
time began, but has in due time manifested
His word through preaching, which was
committed to me according to the command-
ment of God our Savior.”
Titus 1:1-3

At this glorious and very special time of the year we pause for a moment and celebrate the fact that because of Jesus Christ and Christmas Day we can receive and enjoy the certainty of eternal life. This is an amazing message and one that gives real hope and joy to millions of people all over the world. This is for sure “the day of salvation” and it is important that we share this glorious message of hope with our friends and family. Jesus did for us on the cross what we could not do for ourselves and by this once for all sacrifice purchased eternal life for every man and woman on the earth. But this gift has to be appropriated by personal faith and repentance and by a lifestyle, which, as Paul points out, is in accordance with godliness. Essentially this means living a life that is wholly punctuated by love. Only God in Christ can give us this love and pursuing it on a daily basis is well worth it. Paul put it this way:

“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor
uncircumcision avails anything, but faith
working through love.”
Galatians 5:6

In other words, it is the life of Christ in us alone that transforms us and that enables us to truly love one another. This is what it means to be a Christ follower and this alone is the final proof that we are in fact Jesus’ children and therefore belong to him and all of this because of Christmas Day. To live one’s life then without appropriating the significance of Christmas Day would be a tragedy that will lead to eternal loss and sadly many do. We are called to change this by the faithful preaching of the real message of Christmas.

 

The Suffering Church

At this time of year it would not be appropriate to rejoice, celebrate and spoil ourselves without pausing to think of, pray for and help support the suffering Church; mainly in the Middle East and Africa. Here in these regions of the world the Church of Jesus Christ is being persecuted and literally slaughtered by radical Islamists. This carnage continues in Egypt where the ancient Coptic Church is being assaulted as never before by Islamic radicals and in Nigeria where thousands of Christians have been murdered by Bokoharam and then, in the Nineveh Plains of Iraq the believers in Jesus endure an unending persecution at the hands of Muslims.

Charmaine Hedding, the Director of the Shai Fund writes concerning Egypt, “Egypt’s Christian community faces threats of violence during church services, attacks on buses filled with innocent pilgrims and children, and an epidemic of kidnapping, rape, beatings and torture of their women. The problem is that these crimes are common in the villages outside major cities, where these actions occur often with impunity, and even more so because local communities are unwilling to get involved, and therefore the victims receive little or no help.”

Even the Christmas story is punctuated with this wickedness and suffering in that Herod murdered every little boy two years and younger in an attempt to kill Jesus (Matthew 2:13-18). We must act and cannot just “pass by on the other side.” You can help by donating with confidence to the Shai Fund. Please remember the suffering Church in the world by going to: www.theshaifund.org or write to the Shai Fund at:

Shai Fund,
500 N. Walnut Street,
Murfreesboro,
Tennessee 27130.

Cheryl and I would like to wish you all a very blessed and peaceful Christmas, filled with the love of God and the very real presence of Jesus.

Merry Christmas,

Malcolm Hedding

Darwin’s Deception

Darwin’s Deception

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                        “In the beginning God created the heavens

                         and the earth.”

                                                            Genesis 1:1

 

                        “By faith we understand that the worlds were

                         framed by the word of God, so that the things

                         seen were not made of things that are visible.”

                                                            Hebrews 11:3

Darwin’s voyage on the Beagle in 1831 to the Galapagos Islands was a dark day for the human race because he consequently made assertions that effectively deny the existence of God as Creator and that have paved the way for Fascists to justify their programs of extermination on a scale never seen before. The world he wrote of in his books, “The Origin of the Species” and “The Descent of Man” is that of brutality and disregard for human life. Darwin was indeed a radical racist and described black people, Indians, South American people, Aborigines, Eskimos and Maoris as inferior to white Europeans and in fact as savages. He did this routinely and indeed he had to because his misguided theory of evolution demanded that “the best of us” emerge from the vast pool of evolving human beings. For him evolution was ongoing and thus must be seen in the human race. Consequently the European branch of humanity was the most developed leaving other peoples inferior, unequal to them and expendable. Here is Darwin in his own words:

“The western nations of Europe now so immeasurably

surpass their former savage progenitors that they stand

at the summit of civilization. The civilized races of man

will almost certainly exterminate and replace the savage

races through the world…” Charles Darwin

Adolf Hitler became an enthusiastic supporter of Darwin’s evil ideas and simply applied them with fanatical zeal. The German Arian race was therefore at the very top of the evolutionary process and the other nations particularly black people; Gypsies and Indian people were near the bottom. The Jews were at the very bottom; they had not evolved enough and were a threat to the survival of the best or the fittest amongst us! It was for this reason that the Nazi regime banned intermarriage, as this would weaken the gene pool of the more greatly evolved Germans. Welcome to the world of brutality and barbarism! It is of course necessary to take note of the fact that Islamic theology asserts, to this day, that Jews are the descendants of apes and pigs and in the 1930s many Islamic leaders made common cause with Hitler.

Richard Weikart in his book, “From Darwinism to Hitler” demonstrates:

That many leading Darwinian biologists and social

  thinkers in Germany overturned the traditional Judeo-

  Christian and enlightenment ethics, especially the view

  that human life is sacred. Many of these thinkers

 supported moral relativism, yet simultaneously exalted

  evolutionary fitness to the highest arbiter of morality.

  Darwinism played a key role in the rise of eugenics, but

  also euthanasia, infanticide, abortion and racial exterm-

  ination. This was especially important in Germany since

  Hitler built his view of ethics on Darwinian principles

  and not Nihilism.”

Of course some would consider this to be an extreme view of Darwin’s misguided thinking but in fact Darwin’s deception took hold of many British leaders and adventurers so that even Cecil John Rhodes, a great admirer of Darwin and well respected everywhere, because he digested Darwin’s writings, considered black people, Indians and others within the reach of the British Empire to be inferior savages that could with impunity be exterminated like unwanted pests! Consider his words below:

 “I contend that we are the finest in the world and that the

 more we inhabit it the better for the human race. It is our

 duty to seize every opportunity of acquiring more

 territory and we should keep this one idea steadily before

 our eyes that more territory simply means more of the

 Anglo-Saxon race, more of the best, the most human,

 most honorable race the world possesses..”

 Cecil John Rhodes

Darwin’s deceptive writings brought misery and murder to Australasia in that his writings, as substantiated by the “Melbourne Review”, were used to justify the genocide that was applied to the indigenous Australian people known as the Aboriginal people. These people were mercilessly slaughtered because they were considered to be mere underdeveloped savages. So, the paper wrote:

“The inexorable law of natural selection justifies the extermin-

   ating the inferior Australian and Maori races. The world is a

   better place for it since failure to do so would be promoting

   the non-survival of the fittest, protecting the propagation of

   the imprudent, the diseased, the defective and the criminal.”

The same is true of the slave trade in America in that when Darwin’s book “The Origin of the Species” was published in 1859 it reached America’s shores pretty quickly and at a time when the issue of slavery was just about to spark a civil war. The slave traders of the time defended their business by referring to Darwin and so for them black people were not really human but commodities to be bought and sold in the market place. In fact when brought over on slave ships black people were not listed as human beings but merely as cargo and in many instances they were thrown overboard in storms and thus jettisoned to save the ship from sinking. This is the brutality of Darwin’s world; a brutality that has left millions dead and six million Jews mercilessly slaughtered. Even Stalin, like all communists, embraced Darwinism enthusiastically because it validated his idea that the existence of God was a myth and consequently human life had no real dignity and could be exterminated and he set about murdering more people than Hitler! Again welcome to the world of the survival of the fittest! Of Stalin Michael Flannery writes:

“Biographically speaking, reading Darwin’s Origin was seminal in Stalin’s own march toward a godless communism.”

And then in “Landmarks in the Life of Stalin” (1940) Yaroslavsky writes about the influence Darwin had on young Joseph Stalin and Francis B. Randall, in “Stalin’s Russia” (1965) states:

“He remained all his life an admirer of Darwin, whose

theories had been so exciting and controversial in

Stalin’s youth. Darwin had taught him that all things

move progressively forward in an evolutionary

determinism.”

People who take Darwin seriously must become racists and fascists and they cannot become selective believers in his racist theories. Humankind, at different stages of evolution, comes from apes and this must be reflected in its evolving progression. Darwin believed this, wrote about it and thereby removed dignity from the human race and the idea that all men are equal and accountable to God and that they, albeit imperfectly, reflect the image of God. The “Grand Apartheid” government of South Africa was heavily influenced by the Nazis and took on board the notion that black people were underdeveloped and inferior to Europeans. They effectively embraced “The Fuhrer Principle” of racial superiority that was reinforced by Darwinism and consequently they introduced “bantu education” which was a dumbed down educational system designed to meet the inferior minds of black people. Darwin’s theory of evolution, by rejecting the God of the Bible, made gods out of human beings and these, with the greatest power and weapons available to them, became tyrants and were consequently able to subdue others and even exterminate them.

Darwin’s journey that led him to reject the notion that the God of the Bible created all things and set them in order began with his desire to become an Anglican Minister. He lived in the 19th Century that is considered by Christian historians to be the “Golden Age” of British Christianity; and indeed it was. The Wesleyan Revival of the previous century had greatly impacted the nation, even the Anglican Church out of which it came. The churches and chapels throughout the land were generally well-attended and great Christian missionaries; movements and preachers arose within the nation. William Booth (1829-1912) founded the Salvation Army; George Muller of Bristol (1805-1898) did remarkable work amongst the orphans and founded 124 schools. The London Missionary Society, The China Inland Mission and the Baptist Missionary Society sent people like David Livingstone (1813-1873), C. T. Studd (1860-1931) and William Carey (1761-1834) to the ends of the earth.  In Britain itself powerful preachers like Bishop Ryle of Liverpool (1816-1900), Charles Haddon Spurgeon of the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London (1834-1892), Professor Jacob Janeway of the Scottish National Church and Robert Murray McCheyne (1813-1843) were greatly impacting the nation and even in government evangelical Christians like Lord Shaftesbury (1801-1885) were exercising huge influence in the affairs of state. Christianity was at this time very well respected in society, in the universities and amongst the political establishment.

This climate made it unpopular to express views that would appear to dismantle Christianity and challenge its very foundations and Darwin well knew this. Though he set out to become a Christian preacher Darwin had no personal relationship with the God of the Bible and thus he did not know Christ and was not “regenerate” as the New Testament teaches (Titus 2:4-5). This fact greatly precluded him from understanding the Bible and he therefore came to conclusions about God that were nothing short of a betrayal of his own biblical ignorance. The Bible affirms that the natural man, without living faith, is incapable of subjecting himself to the Word of God because his mind is filled with dark imaginations (Romans 8:7; Ephesians 4:17-18). Of God then Darwin wrote the following:

“But I had gradually come by the time to see that the Old

Testament from its manifestly false history of the world,

with the Tower of Babel, Rainbow as a sign etc, etc., and

from its attributing to God the feelings of a revengeful

tyrant, was no more to be trusted than the sacred books

of the Hindoos, or the beliefs of any barbarian.”

Darwin- His private autobiography

Darwin was careful not to make public statements like this as he needed the respect and esteem of his peers but in his “private writings” he displayed a total rejection of the God of the Bible thinking Him to be nothing other than a tyrant! The Old Testament no where puts forth God in this light and in fact it was the validating truth that undergirded Jesus’ ministry (Deuteronomy 8:3;Matthew 4:4) and by which He demonstrated, in His life and person, what God is really like (John 1:18). Darwin was a man without living faith trying to understand holy things of which he knew precious little. His wife to be, Emmy Wedgwood, was duly alarmed by his opinions, as she, being a devout Christian, knew that by expressing them he was challenging the very foundations of the Christian faith. She consequently wrote to him and challenged him about them.

“I implore you to read the parting words of our Savior to

His apostles, beginning at the 13th chapter of the Gospel

according to John.”

Darwin for his part, not willing to lose her, essentially side-stepped her in his reply and really did not address the issues at hand. The truth then is that Darwin’s struggle was a spiritual one, as he did not want to be accountable to God for his actions and subsequently set out to cast off His shackles (Psalm 2:1-6)! Darwin did not rage against God, he planned against Him. A comment in Scientific America acknowledges this when it states:

“By dissociating intellect and morality from God’s power of

creation and attributing them instead to self evolving forces,

Darwin undermined the very foundations of a society shaped

by the Anglican Church, with its hopes of eternal life and the

omnipresent threat of punishment.”

As a divinity student he first attended Edinburgh University and it was there that he came into contact with some fellow radicals, who like him had no living faith in Christ and who also questioned the validity of the biblical record. Two of these were Richard Carlile and the Rev. Robert Taylor. Robert Taylor was so outspoken on these matters that he was actually imprisoned for blasphemy. Darwin found common cause with them and later abandoned his attempt to enter the Anglican ministry and instead took up his studies at Cambridge University in 1828 where he changed course and studied natural history and sciences. Here, by virtue of his studies and his investigative voyage on the Beagle in 1831 to South America, he eventually concluded that the species “were not to be attributed to God’s endless creativity but were the product of a blind, mechanical process that altered them over the course of millions of years.” Though sometimes claiming in public to be agnostic in private for him, God was not present at the dawn of creation and in fact never existed and the record contained in the Bible of His creative actions was false. Darwinism is not compatible with Christianity. Christopher Marty comments:

Charles Darwin’s “theory of evolution still clashes with the

creationist beliefs of some organized religions. For him

personally it meant the end of his belief in creation by God.”

 By contrast the Bible everywhere claims to be wholly inspired or God breathed (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21). Even Jesus, speaking of the Old Testament stated that it was absolutely true (John 17:17). In fact Jesus fully endorsed the biblical record of creation because He referred to Adam and Eve (Matthew 19:4-6), the flood of Genesis 6 and Noah’s epic voyage in an Ark (Luke 17:26-27), Jonah’s journey in the belly of a whale (Matthew 12:40) and much more. If Jesus lied about all of this then what else did He lie about and truly, if He did, then Darwin is right! How is it possible that the Man who has most influenced the world for good, and more so than any other, is in fact a fraud and a liar? But Darwin is wrong because Jesus, the greatest man that ever lived, was absolutely right. The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ created the universe and He did this through Christ by His word (Hebrews 1:1-4; Colossians 1:15-17). When we add to this the fact that in the Bible God everywhere presents Himself as the Creator of the heavens and earth then the idea that we are the product of random selection or choice and that we evolved from apes and monkeys is absolutely absurd. No, God made us within our species and humankind is the masterpiece of His creative work because it is endowed with a free will and is not bound, like the animal kingdom, to instinct. We believe then in micro-evolution, adaptation within the species, but not in macro-evolution, adaptation from the species.

In addition, if God is to be God, then it matters not whether He created everything in one day, seven days, seven thousand days or seventy million years because if He cannot create everything in one day then He is not God! In fact He chose to create everything in seven days and because He is God I believe it, and so did Jesus and His followers. Indeed the complex nature of our beings makes it impossible to believe that it all came together by accident. Just the amazing make up of the eye with its cornea, retina, lens, perfect balance and connection to the brain to process images and all this times two is beyond the boundaries of chance. Darwin himself could not explain this and admitted that it would be absurd to attribute all of this to haphazard events that began in a primeval mud pool with a single genetic amoeba. He therefore wrote:

“To suppose that the eye, with all its imitable contrivances

   for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting

   different amounts of light and for the correction of spherical

   and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural

   selection seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree

   possible.”

No wonder he exclaimed, “The intricacies of the human eye give me cold shudders”, and yet for all this he asserted that it all came about because of chance or random selection. Since the 19th Century medical science has made startling discoveries about the human body and its amazing abilities that Darwin knew nothing of. The Bible correctly attributes this to God.

“For you formed my inward parts; You covered me in my

   mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and

   wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that

   my soul knows very well.”

 Psalm 139:13-14

Darwin planned against the existence of God because he did not want to be accountable to Him. In fact, if the truth be told, he knew that God existed but did what every sinner in need of the love and grace of God does; he rejected this knowledge, removed God from creation and ended up honoring creation more than he did God. This is a common problem amongst men and Paul knew it and wrote of it:

 “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes

are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are

made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are

without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did

glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in

their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the

glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like

corruptible man-and birds and four-footed animals and

creeping things.”    Romans 1:20-23

This passage fully describes Darwin’s position in that his problem was not physical or scientific but in fact spiritual. He knew that God existed and that he, Darwin, is and would be accountable to Him for his actions and therefore he deliberately suppressed this knowledge and contrived a theory to ease his conscience. The absurdity of his theory is seen in the fact that having removed God from creation he was left with no explanation as to how everything, including the whole universe, came about from nothing. Nothing is not the atmosphere or air that we breath since this contains atomic elements. Nothing is really beyond our ability to comprehend it as it resides outside of our universe and so it can best be described as a total void. This nothing, we are to believe, went off with a bang and produced all the foundational elements required to build the universe and to sustain life upon the earth. Quite frankly it takes more faith to believe in this than to believe that God created all things and was responsible for the “bang”.

In the 1980s the “Venus Probe”, a satellite that was sent to investigate Venus, accidentally recorded, what is called, the “ripples of the universe.” That is, the speed with which the universe is expanding through nothing! It even sent back a computer image of the universe, which looked like an egg traveling through nothing. The mystery that this provoked is, who or what is accelerating the universe in this way? Actually the universe needs to expand at a remarkable speed in order for life to be sustained on earth! In short, to use scientific language, what gives “the bang” the power of continuous acceleration? The answer is; God by Jesus Christ.

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over

   all creation. For by Him all things were created that are

   in heaven and that are on the earth, visible and invisible,

   whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers.

   All things were created through Him and for Him. And He

   is before all things and in Him all things consist.”

  Colossians 1:15-17

 In the end Darwinists are not going to admit that they are wrong; this will never happen. Not even if they are presented with infallible truth and proof concerning intelligent design will they agree that they are wrong. A few years ago two Darwinists were debating two Creationists on this issue and, not realizing that their microphones were live, the one Darwinist was heard saying to the other just before the debate began, “Whatever happens tonight do not concede to intelligent design.” In other words the debate was not concerned with truth but with stubbornly holding to evolution and the rejection of God as the Creator of the heavens and the earth. According to the Bible, this is the definition of a fool (Psalm 14:1).

Malcolm Hedding

 

 

                         

The Politics of Hatred and Betrayal

The Politics of Hatred and Betrayal

Blog

An overview of the historical issues that have brought South Africans to where they are today

 

“You will achieve more in this world through acts of mercy

than you will through acts of retribution.”

Nelson Mandela

 

A few weeks ago my wife and I were watching the submissions being made by South African citizens to Members of Parliament concerning the proposed ANC legislation that would give the government the right to change the constitution and thereby seize or expropriate white owned land without compensation. To be honest the language being employed by many of the black people making their submissions was absolutely shocking, totally racist and filled with hate. To be sure if a white person ever spoke like this in a public forum he or she would be instantly condemned and possibly even prosecuted. But, hiding behind the “victim of apartheid” shield these bigots were allowed to get away with it. Also, the threats they made of taking matters into their own hands were alarming and should not be passed off as rhetoric especially since it is now a proven fact that since 1994 some four thousand white South African farmers have been brutally killed by black criminals. This is no isolated occurrence as some have glibly asserted, no it is a coordinated initiative driven by revenge and hatred to slay innocent people. All of this has been made more alarming by the fact that senior ANC politicians, including the erstwhile President Jacob Zuma, went from rally to rally all around the country since 1994 singing songs that called for the slaughter of the Boers (Afrikaner farmers). “With our machine guns we will kill the Boer” they sang and no one stepped in to stop this rabble rousing that coming from government leaders seemed to give license to the average listener to go out and do just that. All that Nelson Mandela had stood for had been betrayed by irresponsible leaders who could not and cannot “hold a candle” to him. The question is, how did we get to this and what are the historical roots that have brought South Africans to this crisis point in their history? Well for your consideration here they are. Please read this document in its entirety as, if you do, a picture will emerge, as it did with me when I researched the content, that will surprise you.

 

The Way Station
The early sea faring adventurers of the 15th and 16th centuries were Portuguese. Two famous names come to mind in this respect being Vasco da Gama and Bartholomew Dias. These two adventurers rounded the Cape of Storms (later called the Cape of Good Hope) and to prove it erected stone crosses some of which can still be seen today. They ignited the thought that indeed a way to the east could be found via the tip of Africa and the Cape of Storms and so in the 17th century the Dutch East India Company picked up the challenge and in 1652 Jan van Riebeek, sailing on his flagship the Dromedaris, landed at the Cape of Storms. Here they established a way station for ships traveling to India and beyond. For him, and those with him, there was no intention to establish a new colony but with the passing of time and the arrival of more ships a settlement was established in order to replenish the ships and an impressive fort was built to protect the route from other would be sea faring nations like England for instance. To facilitate the expansion of the way station land was actually bought from the Hottentot and Koi people who were indigenous to the region and inevitably a certain amount of racial intermingling took place that led to the birthing of what is today called the Cape Coloured People. Also, with the shipping demand more land was needed and so the arriving Europeans eventually, by overwhelming technology and military strength, just took the land from the indigenous peoples and a colony was truly established. Added to this was the arrival of the French Huguenots who were fleeing the persecution that had broken out against them in France on St. Bartholomew’s Day. They brought with them the grape cultivars that laid the foundations of South Africa’s modern day and magnificent wine farms. Today in a beautiful town called Franschhoek (a corner of France) one can see an impressive monument to their achievements, which also records, sadly, the agenda of the Dutch colonists to force them to assimilate into the Dutch community at the Cape. They were thus forced to speak Dutch and speaking French was forbidden. This racial pressure was successful and so today the Huguenots are recognized only by their names; the Dupree’s, the Rossouw’s and the Fourie’s etc.

 

Competitive Interests
The growing Dutch colony at the Cape demanded a governor of which Simon van der Stel was the most famous and with government administration came magnificent Dutch Gabled homes the most impressive of which being those on the wine fields around Stellenbosch and Groot Constantia, a very beautiful homestead and winery nestled south of Cape Town near Constantia Neck. However, competing commercial interests and the rise of England as a maritime power meant that the British were not going to allow the Dutch to milk the lucrative eastern markets. Therefore in the late 18th century and early 19th century the English literally squeezed the Dutch East India Company out of business and invaded the Cape Colony. Cape Town was now becoming a thriving town and the British, not satisfied with a “small town colony”, decided to expand up the eastern coast and subsequently in 1820 hundreds of British settlers landed on the coast in what became known as the Eastern Cape and founded an outpost called Grahamstown and beyond including Port Elizabeth and Algoa Bay. This brought the British settler initiative into contact and conflict with the indigenous Xhosa people and so the so-called Kaffir Wars (Wars with the black infidels) broke out. To this day the Anglican Church in Grahamstown records in its sanctuary the British soldiers and people who died in these wars. In short the colonial power set out to seize land from the Xhosa people and by virtue of their superior civilization, as they saw it, and military strength they thought that they were entitled to it. The Xhosa people were in the end subjugated and while vast tracks of lands were still left under their tribal authority the coastal regions were developed and new cities like King William’s Town and East London were built. The seeds of bitterness and hatred had been planted and they would in the end produce from the Xhosa people one of South Africa’s greatest sons, Nelson Mandela. He, knowing full well the injustice that had visited his people, freed himself from the hatred and bitterness that could have so easily entangled his life and was thus able to also free his people from their long journey of servitude under white domination. Mandela was a God given gift to South Africa.

Still thirsting for more adventure and discovery, on Christmas Day in 1835 Henry Francis Fynn dropped anchor off the coast some 500 miles east of Grahamstown and founded what today is called the city of Durban. He named the new settler port after the Governor of the Cape Colony, Sir Benjamin D’ Urban. This new colonial region would be called Natal but once again this colonial adventure would collide with the indigenous black people. In this case a proud warlike people called the Zulus. While some attempts were made to purchase land from the Zulu King Dingane the ever-expanding new settlement needed more and more land, which in the end provoked a frontier war with the Zulus in 1879. This war saw the Zulu Impis (Warriors) achieve some spectacular victories over the British troops stationed at Rorkes Drift, Isandlwana and Intombe but in the end the superior weapons of the British overwhelmed the Zulu army and the King Cetshwayo was forced to surrender and cede territory to the British Crown. With Zulu power broken the new Natal colony spread in land and with the passing of time towns like Pietermariztburg, Newcastle, Ladysmith, Greytown and Harrismith emerged; all linked together by roads and a railway line and supported by schools, hospitals and governing infrastructure. The black man became a defeated second class citizen whose lot in life was to now serve the interests of the colonial power and, if the truth be told, the British generally held the African people in disdain and contempt and years later in 1910 this would be clearly demonstrated.

 

The New Exodus
After three decades of enduring British colonial rule in the Cape Colony the Dutch settlers decided to trek north in 1835 in search of new lands where they could again be self governing and free. They therefore put together a train of ox drawn wagons and began a new exodus that would take them into the hinterland. This would be a courageous journey fraught with great difficulty as they would have to find a way through high mountain regions and all the while make sure that they could defend and sustain themselves. They were also a “godsdienstig” (Godly Christian) people and were by now an emerging nation group with a new language called Afrikaans. Their epic journey would henceforth be called The Great Trek but it would also sow the seeds of racial hatred and bitterness that would in the end destroy their national aspirations forever and, like the Xhosa and Zulu people of old, they would end up humiliated and stripped of all power.

The route of the Great Trek was through the Hottentots Holland Mountain range and then north east towards the interior and the Drakensberg Mountains. Once well beyond the Hottentots Holland Mountain range the leaders of the Great Trek made a fateful decision that would forever deeply impact the Afrikaner people. It was thus decided that a significant part of the wagon train, under the leadership of Andries Pretorious and Piet Retief, would break off from the main group and make an explorative detour into the Natal colonial region in the hope of establishing a Boer homeland there. In the main they would seek to avoid the British colonial authorities in their attempt to scout out the land. Unfortunately this brought them into the Zulu territory ruled by Dingane the Zulu King. In need of an agreement upon which the Zulu King would cede land to them and give them supplies to sustain their people they formed a protective laager at a river where they could protect themselves if needs be. Andries Pretorious stayed with the wagons while Piet Retief led a delegation to the Royal Zulu Kraal (Palace) where having arrived unarmed, in order to demonstrate their peaceful intentions, they met with Dingane requesting a land agreement, food and the right of peaceful passage through his royal lands. Dingane, already worried by Trekker incursions into his territory near the Drakensberg Mountains, received them well, prepared a feast in their honor and then had them brutally murdered. When news of this reached the wagon train they knew that within a short time the whole Zulu army would attack them. This attack came on the 16th of December. Being only 475 people they had little hope of survival but also being people of faith they gathered together in prayer by which they promised God that if they survived they would honor Him all the days of their lives by keeping the Christian Sabbath and by building a monument to His glory. They fulfilled this promise on the 16th December in 1949 when the Voortrekker Monument was officially inaugurated.

Early in the morning of the 16th of December they heard the battle chanting of the approaching Zulu army and a little later the battle was engaged. With women and children loading weapons the Boer Voortrekkers were not only able to withstand the Zulu army but they inflicted on them a devastating defeat. Thousands of Impis were killed and so much so that the river that formed a half moon protective barrier to the wagons became blood red. It was thus later called Blood River and the tragic events of that day would henceforth be known as the Battle of Blood River. The Zulu King Dingane withdrew his warriors from the battle and sent word that the wagons could leave and would not be attacked. Slowly but surely the laager was broken up and the wagons, filled with watchful and thankful hearts to the God of the Bible, began to take their journey to the north.

There is no doubt that Dingane’s willful betrayal and treachery was shameful and I have yet to hear any black South African acknowledge it and repent of it. This murderous act would in the decades to come fill the Afrikaner heart with a relentless bitterness and hatred toward the African people. Consequently, as time passed, they not only built an imposing monument that to this day dominates the skyline of a city called Pretoria but they also named the city after the brave and surviving Voortrekker leader of the Blood River Battle, Andries Pretorious. They emblazoned the monuments “inner sanctuary” with motifs from the epic battle at Blood River and they also proclaimed a day of remembrance, which they arrogantly called Dingane’s Day. That is, quite literally meaning, “The day when Dingane met his Moses!” Recognizing the unsuitability of this designation it was eventually changed to “The Day of the Covenant”, then “The Day of the Vow” and finally the “Day of Reconciliation”. The fact that God delivered them from such a peril of epic biblical proportions left them with the mistaken idea that God had uniquely sanctified their mission which henceforth included separating themselves completely from the African people in such a way that the Africans would be robbed of their human dignity and subjected to appalling suffering. Sadly the day of their greatest victory also became the day of their greatest failure since it laid the foundations for their defeat in the new century to come.

 

Two New Nation States
The Great Trek ended in two regions of Southern Africa. The one being a land mass a little north west of the British colony of Natal and the other almost due north of Natal on the other side of a huge river called the Vaal or Grey River. The Boer Trekkers crossed this river and founded a state in 1853 called “The Transvaal Republic.” This republic’s first President was Paul Kruger. The other Boer state, named the Orange Free State, just north west of Natal was also founded at about the same time and it elected a leader called President Steyn. It is a fact that these two new states were not founded on any land belonging to the African people (See note 1). No major wars in this regard were ever fought with the African people although there were African tribes further north of the two Boer Republics and these were the Pede, Tswana and Matabele peoples. The latter actually being Zulus that had split from the main tribe down south and had relocated in a region that would, with the passing of time, become known as Rhodesia and now called Zimbabwe. It is true that from time to time these republics had on going skirmishes with the Zulus just south of them and with the Basuto and Swazis just east of them but generally they were free from serious conflict with other tribes and in fact they were fully recognized by the Netherlands, Germany, France, Belgium, England and the United States. Then the unthinkable happened in that in the Transvaal Republic the world’s biggest gold deposits were found and in the Orange Free State Republic the world’s biggest diamond deposits were found. This quickly got the attention of the other colonial powers and chiefly that of the one nearest to the action, Great Britain.

 

The Short Lived Freedom
The discovery of gold and diamonds in the two Boer Republics led to a “gold and diamond rush.” This essentially meant that thousands of people from the two British controlled colonies began to pour into the two Boer Republics. This alarmed the governments of these two nations and accordingly they viewed these people as “Uitlanders” or foreigners and thus refused to let them vote in elections or take prominent positions in civil life. This greatly annoyed the British colonial authorities who, if the truth really be known, were looking for a pretext to get at the emerging wealth of the two Boer Republics. Seizing on a particular situation in this regard an impasse was reached and subsequently in 1877 by special warrant the British government attempted to annex the Transvaal Republic. This was to a degree resisted by Paul Kruger who twice visited London in an attempt to resolve the matter peacefully, sadly to no avail. Subsequently tensions rose between the two entities finally reaching breaking point on the 16th of December in 1880 when the First Boer War broke out. It did not last long as in March1881 it came to an end, remarkably with a Boer victory. The pride of the British Empire being dented it was determined to reignite the conflict at some later point and did!

Again, citing the mistreatment of British colonial nationals, the British colonial leaders in cooperation with London engineered the so-called Jameson Raid at the end of 1895. The raid was a botched affair but it put the two Boer Republics on notice that war with England was inevitable. The Boers being well armed struck the British army on the 11th October in 1899 with impressive victories at Magersfontein, Colenso and Stormberg and so the 2nd Boer War or Anglo Boer War began. It would be the dawn of a new era of war for no longer would the opposing armies square off in colorful battle regalia with no real element of surprise as to the hour of engagement. Now trenches, machine guns, heavy artillery, commando unit tactics, snipers and concentration camps would all be employed for the first time. This would in fact be a precursor to the Great War that broke out in Europe in 1914.Though eventually totally out gunned and overwhelmed by the number of British soldiers facing off against them, the combined Boer armies of the two Boer republics only lost 6189 combatants whereas the British army lost 22092! Sadly however the British army took 26370 Boer women and children captive and sent them to some 100 concentration camps throughout the country where in appalling conditions they starved them to death. It was in fact a British nurse called Emily Hobhouse who became the whistle blower in this respect. When news of this atrocity reached London it provoked outrage and to its great shame the British government was forced to acknowledge, albeit reluctantly, this terrible crime against the Boer people.

Today the ANC government of South Africa is equally and shamefully responsible for a similar crime being perpetrated against the white farmers of South Africa. Under their watch some 4000 white farmers, mainly Afrikaans speaking, have been brutally murdered. This is a fact now verified by a number independent investigations and this crime will come back to haunt the ANC. They cannot continue to “sweep this matter under the carpet” like the British first attempted to do. It just goes to show that racism is no respecter of persons and if we are driven by hatred and lust for revenge we become like our erstwhile oppressors.

So it was then that on the 31st of May in 1902 the Boers surrendered and signed the Treaty of Vereeniging. The Two Boer Republics were dissolved, Paul Kruger fled to Europe where he died and the Transvaal and Orange Free State were annexed by the British and thus, together with the Cape and Natal colonies, became subject to Queen Victoria’s reign. The Boer War also left some 24000 civilians dead and many of these were black people who, for various reasons, became embroiled in this “all white shoot out.” The Afrikaner people were left humiliated and disinvested of the right to determine their own future. Consequently, given all that had happened to them, including the loss of their women and children, they allowed their hearts to be furthered infested with a deep hatred of the British people. This hatred and resentment would in just over thirty-six years drive some of them into the arms of the Nazis!

 

The Union of South Africa
In July of 1996 Nelson Mandela, the first truly democratically elected President of South Africa, undertook an official visit to the United Kingdom. While addressing the British Parliament he made the claim that Britain had indeed laid the foundations stones upon which the Apartheid state had been built. Though many expressed shock and disdain at this comment the question is, was it true? Indeed he was right and the events of 1910 prove it. The British were the undisputed victors of the Anglo Boer War meaning that all the colonies, including those of the two erstwhile Boer Republics, were now under British sovereignty. Their next step would demonstrate their true intentions and agenda and thus in 1910 they approved and gave birth to a new nation called The Union of South Africa. The flag of this new nation said it all in that it was emblazoned with orange, white and blue, symbols of the Dutch origins of the people, and an insert in the middle was made up of a Union Jack flanked on one side by the flags of the two erstwhile Boer Republics. In other words this would be a white dominated country and the flag had nothing in it that gave reference and recognition to the vast black majority who at that time numbered about 19 million people. The symbols of the flag gave notice then that the black people of the country were irrelevant and would be excluded from power in a democratic system that, though built on the Westminster model, would be a limited democracy serving the interests of three million whites only.  The majority black peoples would be left disenfranchised and subjugated. This was Britain’s chosen system of government for a nation that would now become a fully-fledged member of the British Commonwealth of Nations. The “Scramble for Africa” by the European colonial nations had nothing to do with the welfare of the indigenous people living on the continent but everything to do with the vast mineral wealth that lay under their ancient tribal lands. Indeed, Nelson Mandela was absolutely right! The suffering of the black people would now continue and become even more intense.

 

The Second World War
Given Britain’s commitment to the perpetuation of white power on the sub continent, some of the most well known Boer Generals, who fought against the British in the Anglo Boer War, now became enthusiastic supporters of Britain’s policies in the region. For them this was the only means to secure the interests and well being of the Afrikaner volk (people). General Louis Botha and General Jan Smuts were two of these amongst others. The latter, as leader of the South African Party, eventually became Prime Minister of the newly formed Union of South Africa and consequently by the outbreak of both World Wars actively encouraged South Africans to volunteer, sign up and go to war against the Germans on behalf of Britain. Thousands of South Africans did, including my father and two of his siblings. Jan Smuts, in fact a brilliant man, actually became a personal friend of the British Royal Family, was part of the Joint Chiefs of Staff that pursued the war against the Nazis and was one of the founders of the United Nations. However, for many Afrikaners at home, especially those of the provinces of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State, he and Louis Botha were traitors and they set about to finding a way to unseat and defeat them. This “way” consisted of four components: First they would organize politically by forming the Purified Nationalist Party. Second they would establish a Boer militia called “Die Ossewa Brandwag” (The Wagon Fire Watch). Third, given their hatred for the British, they would actively align themselves with Nazi Germany and four, they would find a means to ignite Afrikaner nationalism. In addition a highly secretive and well organized body was formed called “Die Broederbond” (The Fellowship of the Brothers) in order to be the real power and protectors of all things pertaining to the Afrikaner people and their destiny. No Afrikaans leader came to power in the government, in commerce or even in the world of sports without the approval of the Broederbond.

The Ossewa Brandwag, founded in 1939 at Bloemfontein, had an emblem that was in all respects similar to that of the Nazis and they essentially began to sabotage the war effort in South Africa by assaulting or killing men who had volunteered to sign up, by demolishing military installations and by disabling military equipment. They had “insiders” everywhere and their impact was not insignificant. Many men were killed or badly assaulted, planes were damaged beyond repair as was other military equipment. They were well organized with strong leaders and the Smuts government responded aggressively by rounding them up and placing them in a concentration camp at Koffiefontein. Some of these imprisoned, Nazi sympathizing leaders, would eventually become Prime Minister (John Vorster) and cabinet members of a new nationalist government that would sweep to power in 1948. In one of their publications called  “The Observation Post” they wrote, “Mein Kampf shows the way to greatness in South Africa” and a Nazi publication of the time noted that the Ossewa Brandwag was founded on the “Fuhrer Principle.” That is, the principle of racial purity.

In order to reignite the desire for independent sovereignty and the means to determine their own destiny free from the British Commonwealth of Nations the newly formed so called Purified National Party under D. F. Malan, together with other nationalists, took advantage of the centenary celebrations of the conclusion of the Great Trek in 1938 by organizing “Another Great Trek”. This Trek, replete with replica wagons, would wind its way through the country ending in Pretoria at the Voortrekker Monument. Its impact on the Afrikaner people was huge and being the white majority in 1948 they easily defeated the Smuts government and took over the reigns of power. The jubilation that swept through the Afrikaner community was huge as now they were on the verge of forming a new Afrikaner Republic; only this time it would embrace all four provinces. The majority black population had much to fear.

 

The Apartheid Government
After assuming the reigns of power the Nationalist Party, heavily influenced by the “Fuhrer’s Principle”, began to formulate its philosophy of governance and with it what “Nuremberg” style laws it would now adopt, not against the Jews but against the black majority in the country. Sadly, and to the shame of the Dutch Reformed Church of the day, some of these “new racial architects” were Christian ministers! The apparent mastermind of what would eventually be called  “Grand Apartheid” was a Dutch Reformed Minister by the name of Du Toit and the first Prime Minister of the incoming Nationalist Party was another Dutch Reformed Church Minister by the name of D. F. Malan. For them the Afrikaner Volk (people) was the ” New Israel of God” having a divine destiny confirmed by their exodus from the Cape Colony and the favor of God bestowed upon them at the “Battle of Blood River.” Incorrectly invoking portions of scripture from the Old Testament, which in context referred to the nation of Israel only, they demanded that the Afrikaner people, and indeed the English speaking white race amongst them, should keep themselves apart from the infidel (Kaffir) black majority people. Consequently they set about passing laws that imposed upon the black people of the country burdens of great pain and suffering. The most notable of these were: “The Influx Control Act” that restricted the movement of black people in their own country. The so-called “Pass Law Act” that enabled the police to immediately determine whether a black person was legally in an area or not. This was a type of identity document that had to be on the holder’s person at all times. The black population called this a “Dom Pass”, meaning a stupid document. The “Job Reservation Act” that ensured that only white people could occupy places of management and be employed in many trade and high-end professions. The black people would have to be content with the “lower end” professions, which usually meant that they would give their labor to the cities, suburbs, mines, industrial concerns and farms of the nation. The “Bantu Education Act” that asserted that black people were less intelligent than white people and therefore that they should receive a “dumbed down” education to suit their inferior minds. The ” Mixed Marriage Act” that made it a crime to marry across the racial lines and the “Reservation of Separate Amenities Act” of 1953 that designated beaches, parks, buses, hospitals, schools, benches and toilets for white use only. With these draconian laws in place the Nationalists could now allow black shanty-towns (locations) to spring up like satellites orbiting the well manicured towns and cities of their white overlords. The most well known of these was Soweto but there many others by the name Umlazi, Mamelodi, Payneville, Daveyton, Kwa Thema, khayehalitsha, Kwa Mashu, Gugulethu, Nyanga, Langa etc. These were deliberately left in shocking conditions because they initially desired them to be so in order to encourage the black people living there to leave for their tribal homelands. All those living in “The Location” had to carry their “Dom Pass” and so, like shadows, they would emerge in the early mornings to their places of work in the white only cities and towns and in the evenings they would return to their ghettos again. Even the public benches in the cities had emblazoned upon them the words “Whites Only.” I well remember that in the evening at about 6pm a siren went off thus announcing that all black people had to leave the area except for those whose Pass restrictions authorized them to stay. The white towns and cities were “white by night” and police vans would patrol these areas in order to ensure that this would be the case. Grand Apartheid had arrived!

 

Bantustans
The first batch of National Party Prime Ministers were fanatically committed to the idea of Afrikaner supremacy. D. F Malan immediately began to lay the ground work for a policy that would constrict blacks to only 13% of the land mass of the country by having the so called “Bantu Authorities Act” passed in 1951.That is, black people were going to be forcibly removed from much of the country and deposited in Homelands according to their language and tribal affiliation. Even black people who did own land, like those of Sofia Town, would in the end be upended by land confiscation and sent to a Location or to a Homeland. Malan stepped down in 1954 and was followed by J. G Strijdom who was actually called, “The Lion of the North” because he was so single minded on building an Afrikaner kingdom that would tolerate English speakers and totally exclude the black people from any part in it. He was thus determined to, not only follow through on the Bantustan policy but also to remove South Africa from the British Commonwealth of Nations and declare it to be in essence an Afrikaner Republic. Dr Hendrik Verwoerd became Prime Minister in 1958 and he was able to achieve the Afrikaner dream of establishing a new republic in that on the 31st of May 1961 the South African Parliament finally took South Africa out of the British Commonwealth thereby abolishing the Union of South Africa and establishing the Republic of South Africa, which actually remains until today. The date was highly significant in that it was on this very day in 1902 that the two Boer states surrendered to the British and signed the Treaty of Vereeniging. The Afrikaner had finally prevailed at the expense of the black majority people of the nation who, within a few short years, would be subjected to unbelievable pain and suffering by mass forced removals. Verwoerd was in fact assassinated in the very halls of the Parliament in 1966 by a Coloured man called Demitri Tsafendas and was replaced by, the Neo Nazi and Ossewa Brandwag member, Advocate John Vorster. It was John Vorster who fully implemented the Bantustan Policy and consequently had hundreds of thousands of black people loaded up on trucks and sent to the homelands. These homelands became known as the TBVC states in that they were made up of four new black states called the Transkei, the Ciskei, Venda and Bophuthatswana. These were totally non viable as they had no industrialized economies and were ruled by “puppet leaders” the most well known of which were Kaiser Matanzima, Bantu Holomisa and Lucas Mangope. They were heavily subsidized by the Nationalist Government that considered this a small price to pay for the privilege of having an all white republic.

Most white people had no idea of the huge suffering that was being inflicted on the black people of the country as the isolation between the two segments of society was so complete that they lived in a type of political bubble and were subjected every evening at 6:55 to a brain washing radio broadcast called “Current Affairs.” Prime Minister John Vorster had a brother called the Rev. Koot Vorster who was also the Moderator of the Dutch Reformed Church. He was theologically and ideologically totally committed to the idea of a white only state and so the country was run by a “prince and a prophet”. I know this because I once attended a lecture presented by Koot Vorster.

 

Revolt and Liberation
The black peoples dis-enfranchised, dis-invested of owning property in their own country and restricted from traveling freely throughout the land began to organize in a way that they could resist the government and so the ANC ( African National Congress) was actually established in 1912 in Bloemfontein in order to challenge the newly formed government of the Union of South Africa about the dis-enfranchisement of the black population in the country. At their 1955 congress they unveiled the “Freedom Charter” that to this day constitutes the democratic vision that they have for the country. However, the Sharpeville Massacre of 69 black people by the South African Police on the 21st March in 1960, who were peacefully protesting against the Pass Laws of the country, shocked the country and many overseas nations and galvanized the ANC into action. The brutality of the apartheid government had been laid bare for all to see and so the ANC decided to take a more aggressive approach in their resistance to the apartheid government. This aggressive approach meant that they would now, because they were banned, open up a front organization called the United Democratic Front and they set up a military wing based in Zambia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique called Umkhonto we Sizwe, meaning “The Spear of the Nation.” Initially Umkhonto we Sizwe targeted military or police installations but sadly they also launched a terror campaign against civilians in which South Africans of all racial groups were killed and wounded. The most notable attacks in this regard were the Church Street bombing in Pretoria, the Magoo Bar bombing in Durban, the Standard Bank bombing in Roodeport, the Johannesburg Railway Station bombing and the Amanzimtoti Shopping Mall bombing. Also, the English speaking papers, notably the Rand Daily Mail, and to a lessor degree the Sunday Times and The Star, began to expose the awful crimes of the National Party government which provoked the government to secretly fund, with tax payers’ money, a new English speaking daily called, “The Citizen.” A prominent cabinet minister called Connie Mulder was entrusted by John Vorster’s government to initiate this instrument of brain washing and deception. Fortunately good journalism by the other English speaking papers exposed this sinister initiative and so “Muldergate” or “The Information Scandal” broke out leaving the government highly embarrassed and with “egg on its face”.

Nelson Mandela, born in the Eastern Cape in 1918 and well educated, became an active member of the ANC, first in the youth league and then in its decision making structures and finally he became its recognized leader. He in 1964 was put on trial for treason together with what was called “The Rivonia Seven.” Facing the death penalty he made a final statement where he declared: “I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But, if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die”. Consequently Mandela was convicted of treason and sentenced to life in prison, a sentence he would begin at the maximum security prison situated on Robben Island off the coast from Cape Town. His image, all references to him and any news about him was banned by the government. It was as if he had passed into oblivion but the wider world launched and sustained a “Free Mandela” campaign to the annoyance of the South African government.

In 1976 the Soweto Riots broke out when the Nationalist government decreed that all black children should no longer be tutored in the language of their birth but in fact in Afrikaans. This crazy act of stupidity enraged the black people, it was the “straw that broke the camel’s back” and so the young people began to protest. A young black student, called Hector Peterson, while walking across a playing field was gunned down by the police. This outrageous act of murder turned the protest into a riot that quickly spread all over the country and became an uprising. Young black people everywhere stood up and revolted against the all white government. Of course the government reacted with overwhelming force in an attempt to put it down but this was a major turning point in the country and it sparked the beginning of the end of the Apartheid Government. For the next decade and more the only way in which the government could preserve their all white republic was by placing what was called “a ring of steel” around the African townships. Even the military was called in to enforce this and many township dwellers were killed and perceived trouble makers were taken hostage and murdered. The testimonies to these crimes at the post apartheid “Truth and Reconciliation Commission” were heartbreaking and shocking.

In 1978, mainly because of the Information Scandal, John Vorster stepped down as Prime Minister and was replaced by P. W. Botha who took the title of President. He had been the Minister of Defense under Vorster and was also considered a hardliner. However, by now some of the Cabinet Ministers in his government were beginning to question the viability of the all white government given the desperate security problems in the country and the worsening economic situation, because of the sanctions being leveled against the nation by the international community. In short they knew that the “New Afrikaner Republic” was a lost cause and something had to be done to save the country from a massive catastrophe that would involve a huge amount of bloodshed. In 1989 F. W. de Klerk, supported by Botha’s cabinet, removed Botha from power and immediately called for a referendum among the white community only whereby they would say yes or no to a proposal that would give the government permission to hand over power to a black majority administration to be led by none other than Nelson Mandela. The vote was an overwhelming “yes” and so on the 11th February 1990 Nelson Mandela walked to freedom after being in prison for 27 long years and, after a long and sometimes arduous constitutional conference, a deal was struck that resulted in all South Africans, regardless of colour or creed voting into power, on the 27th April 1994, the very first democratically elected government. Nelson Mandela rightly so became the nation’s first President. The long dark night of racial prejudice, hatred and betrayal was over but the carnage left behind by all of this would now have to be removed and sorted out. Winning the peace can sometimes be more difficult than winning the war! South Africans today are facing this challenge and it may turn out to be more dangerous than we think. That is, do we sort out the carnage of our history by renewed violence, expulsions and anger and bitterness or is there a better way?

 

Conclusions
The historical overview I have given above, though not comprehensive, is nevertheless well researched and accurate. It faithfully documents our journey as a people and as one reads it a picture clearly emerges as to where real blame lies and who then should shoulder it and do something right to rectify it. I believe that it is precisely for this reason that history is so important as it shows us where we truly come from, who we are and what events brought us to where we are today. Without a working knowledge of it we shall come to the wrong conclusions and take decisions that will only perpetuate the hatred and distrust between our peoples. The facts of history are the facts and we cannot change them but we can honestly square up to them, acknowledge the place, by virtue of our ancestors, where they have put us so that we can do the right and appropriate thing to right the wrongs of the past. I then wish to draw your attention to the following:

1.    There is no doubt that the arrival of the Dutch and British colonial powers at the tip of Southern Africa was a dark day for the indigenous people of the sub continent. As a consequence they would journey through a dark tunnel of intense pain and suffering for some 340 years. Yes, the colonial powers brought a more advanced civilization and sophistication to the region and thus built cities, towns, schools, hospitals, enterprise, roads and railways but the price for all of this was paid in the currency of black labor, disenfranchisement, dispossession of land, subjugation, humiliation, forced removals and much sorrow.

2.    The British government was deeply involved in this dark saga and most certainly, as Nelson Mandela pointed out, was responsible for laying the foundations in the country of white supremacy leading ultimately to the Grand Apartheid regime. It was the British who defeated the Xhosa people, the Zulus and the two Boer Republics and therefore had control of all four provinces that embodied the nation and yet they chose to form a new union in 1910 that totally excluded the majority black population from voting and from the powers of government. It was this reality that enticed Jan Smuts and Louie Botha, the two Boer Generals, to support the British concept of empire. The British government, in my view, has yet to make proper restitution in this regard and should be held accountable for its crimes.

3.    The Afrikaner people, deceived by their political and religious leaders, considered themselves a nation entrusted with a special divine mission. A mission that called them to preserve their racial purity at the expense of the black people. Grand Apartheid, imposed upon the country in1948, was a crime of huge proportions. It dehumanized millions of people and inflicted great horrors upon them. The statistics alone demonstrate that their forced removal policy in the end dislocated millions of people from their homes and families. The truth is God heard their cry and sent them a deliverer in the person of Nelson Mandela but the Afrikaner people bear a huge weight of guilt for the brutality that they visited upon the indigenous people of the country.

4.    The English speaking white South Africans by and large came to the country, mainly in 1820, seeking to escape poverty in England and with the hope of beginning a new life with better prospects for their children. They therefore happily went along with the notion of the greater glory of the British Empire. They may not have understood its implications completely but they happily complied with its dictates. The same is true of their place in the Union of South Africa and the Apartheid State that replaced it in 1948. The English ” went along for the ride” because it greatly benefited them. Indeed the English speaking component of the country was always in the opposition seats in Parliament and did in many cases challenge the Afrikaner majority members as did their press but, given that they had control of the major commercial enterprises of the country, they could have used their economic strength to challenge and cripple the Nationalist Government. Sadly they didn’t and consequently thereby share much of the blame as well for the horrors that descended upon the black majority population.

5.    The treachery of the Zulus in murdering Piet Retief and the Boer leaders accompanying him when he went in peace to meet with Dingane was a crime that hugely impacted the Afrikaner people. I have yet to hear any African leader express remorse in this regard. This awful event may well pale into insignificance in the light of what the Afrikaner did to the black population of the country but it should be acknowledged and repented of. The interests of healing and nation building demand it.

6.    The “land question” is a huge issue that must be faced and dealt with. The fact that the government of the Union of South Africa and that of Apartheid regime squeezed the majority black population into 13% of the land mass of the country is totally unacceptable. This then is today a complicated matter because it is true:

·               That the early Dutch settlers legally bought land in the Cape Town region of the country from the Hottentot and Koi people.

·               That the British settlers also legally purchased land in the Eastern Cape and at Port Natal from the indigenous black population.

·               That the two Boer Republics were in the most part situated on land that was not the possession of the black people. Some in recent years have attempted to deny this but it is indeed true.

·               That colonial expansion ended up provoking conflict and war with the indigenous black tribes and with the two Boer Republics. This in turn led to land invasions and the subsequent disinvestment of the black people of their territory and in many cases herded them into shanty towns.

·               That most countries of the world including America, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Russia, Europe and the Middle East have witnessed the same type of conflict and migration of peoples. The answer to unravelling the problems left behind by this reality is not a simple one as, for instance, one cannot hand back the cities of New York, Miami and Philadelphia in the United States to the indigenous Indian people. The same is true of the Maori and Aboriginal people of Australia and New Zealand. One cannot “unscramble scrambled eggs” and if one attempts to do so the nation will be handed over to anarchy and chaos and everyone will be the losers. A better way, and indeed a just way, has to be found in sorting out the debris of the past and this is especially true of South Africa.

·               That we have a generation today, black, white, Indian and Coloured, who have had nothing to do with where they were born and with the legacy that their forefathers left them.

A Proposed Solution
In my view the only way forward would be the following:

1.    The country was in recent years saved from a bloodbath because of the goodwill of its leaders and because it convened two important gatherings. The first was the “Congress for a Democratic South Africa” (CODESA) where the logistics of the hand over of power from a white minority government to a black majority government were hammered out coupled with the drawing up of a new fully democratic constitution. The second was the “Truth and Reconciliation Commission” that brought to light all the crimes and perpetrators thereof relating to the years of the Black People’s subjugation and disenfranchisement. This conference laid bare the horrors of the Apartheid regime and had a strong element of healing and forgiveness built into it. This was quite remarkable and without precedent and was a tribute to the vast reservoir of goodwill that does exist between the nation’s eleven tribes!

2.    In my view a third conference needs to be urgently convened called, ” The Renewal and Restitution Conference”. This conference should of course include the government but also the major leaders of all the segments of South Africa’s society. It should fully examine where and how land can and should be expropriated without compensation and it should strongly resist the “willy nilly” invasion of land just because white people own it. The historical facts in this regard must be taken into consideration especially where land was legally purchased and settled upon.

3.    The Conference on Renewal and Restitution should impose upon the white population a “Land Restitution Tax” of 2% of their gross monthly salary for five years. All white South Africans should pay this additional tax whether they live in or outside of the country. The money in this regard should be levied by SARS (South African Revenue Services) and administered willingly and without compensation by an independent financial organization like Sanlam etc. This will ensure that every Rand is accounted for and that the money is deployed with maximum benefit to the black population. That is, it should be used for projects related to black upliftment, the improvement of black townships, education and medical facilities. It should also be deployed in empowering blacks economically by helping them to acquire property and thereby obtain a greater stake in land ownership.

This tax is the very least that the white community can do to help put right the injustices of the past and if it hurts to pay the tax well this is nothing compared to the hurt that was visited upon our black South African compatriots for over three hundred years.

4.    In addition the murder of 4000 white Afrikaner farmers has to be urgently addressed by the government and brought to an end by all means possible. This may include calling out the army to defend these people but this can no longer be ignored or passed off as random acts of burglary. Also political leaders must henceforth control their language and not incite their hearers to violent action in the name of political rhetoric. If they persist in this regard they should be vigorously prosecuted by law enforcement agencies.

5.    Finally the Voortrekker Monument should be turned into a symbol of hope and reconciliation.  That is, its outside walls so strong and high should by night be illuminated with the colors of the new South African flag and the conference on Renewal and Restitution should conclude with a unique and fully televised and internet streamed event in its 20,000 seater amphitheater.

 

Final Considerations
While the colonial involvement in the nation was hugely problematic for the black population of the country it remains true that by it many sincere, godly Christian missionaries came to the country. It was these missionaries who largely at first brought caring communities, schools and hospitals to the region and even Nelson Mandela was educated in a Methodist school as were many others. These servants of God did not bring a colonial religion to the country but a Jewish one centered on the person and work of Jesus Christ. Their work was amazing and by it many great black Christian leaders were raised up and gifted to the nation. Even to this day we are grateful for the role that Archbishop Desmond Tutu played in challenging the apartheid regime and bringing healing to the nation by his involvement with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Nicholas Bhengu, called the Black Billy Graham of South Africa, was another great healing evangelist who gave oversight to some 2500 churches of the Assemblies of God of Southern Africa. And then there was Michael Cassidy, an Anglican Lay preacher and founder of Africa Enterprise, who constantly fought against institutionalized racism together with many other white preachers including the Rev. Beyers Naude of the Dutch Reformed Church.

Indeed for many black people in the very dark days of apartheid it was the hope of the Gospel of Jesus that gave them the courage to keep going on. The same is true today and it is the Church of Jesus Christ that must now arise in the nation to demonstrate powerfully that God loves all people in the same way and receives them into His kingdom without reference to their race, creed or status in life. In Christ we are all one and united in love. My dear friend Angus Buchan is also a God given gift to the nation as his huge gatherings and national prayer meetings, on a scale never seen anywhere before, should be supported by all South Africans. South Africa can once again astonish the world with its capacity to solve besetting and overwhelming problems because the deep waters of suffering and hurt can become redemptive if we are all willing to pay the price that love and restitution demands. This payment is now overdue!

Malcolm Hedding


Notes:

1.    “ The reason for the strangely empty parts of the country the Boers saw in the 1830s and 1840s was the Mfecane (“The crushing”, the scattering), the most violent and bloody episode in South African history. King Shaka, South Africa’s greatest soldier, had from about 1818 transformed the Zulu nation and, by using new techniques, forged a frighteningly powerful and aggressive Zulu army. It invaded and conquered other Bantu tribes far and wide, with great bloodshed, scattering them to the ends of the country, sometimes indeed beyond it. The Matabele occupation of what is now southern Zimbabwe was a consequence. The Zulus dispossessed other tribes of their lands.”

Andrew Kenny, 6 September 2018. Contracted           columnist to the Institute of Race Relations.

estiny free from the British Commonwealth of Nations the newly formed so called Purified National Party under D. F. Malan, together with other nationalists, took advantage of the centenary celebrations of the conclusion of the Great Trek in 1938 by organizing “Another Great Trek”. This Trek, replete with replica wagons, would wind its way through the country ending in Pretoria at the Voortrekker Monument. Its impact on the Afrikaner people was huge and being the white majority in 1948 they easily defeated the Smuts government and took over the reigns of power. The jubilation that swept through the Afrikaner community was huge as now they were on the verge of forming a new Afrikaner Republic; only this time it would embrace all four provinces. The majority black population had much to fear.