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Conspectus 36

October 2023

Editorial Conspectus 2023

Author: Dr. Cornelia van Deventer

Nonconformist Transformation: An Exegetical Study of Ephesians 5:7–14

Author: José de Carvalho

Mr. José de Carvalho was born in Lisbon, Portugal, and grew up in Mozambique and South Africa. He currently lives in Johannesburg. José has a diploma in management from Wits Technikon (1992) and has considerable corporate experience, including working as a General Manager at Sulzer SA, a Swiss engineering company. In addition, he acquired a diploma in international executive management at IMD in Geneva, Switzerland (1999–2000) and he also holds an M.Th. in Theology from SATS, where he now serves as an academic. José is an active member of the New Testament Society of Southern Africa (NTSSA) with a specific research interest in Pauline Studies.

Keywords: Ephesians 5:7–14, sons of disobedience, children of the light, light and darkness, light of Christ
Ephesians 5:7–14 is an enigmatic pericope fraught with interpretive challenges that have generated much scholarly debate. The appeal in verse 11, “Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but rather expose them,” is contested in terms of what is to be exposed, and how it is to be exposed.

The Effects of Boko Haram on the Church in Nigeria: The Case of Michika Local Government Area, Adamawa State

Author: Roseline Luka Vandi

Ms. Roseline Luka Vandi is a Lecturer and Theologian. She holds a Bachelor of Divinity Degree (B.D.D. 2005) and a Master of Theology (M.Th. 2008) from the Theological College of Northern Nigeria (TCNN), and a PGDE (2016) from the National Teachers’ Institute in Kaduna, Nigeria. Prior to her doctoral studies at Saint Paul’s University in Kenya, Roseline was a Lecturer at TCNN. Roseline recently defended her Ph.D. thesis and will graduate in November 2023. Her area of expertise is Practical Theology, specializing in counselling.

Keywords: Boko Haram, church, pacifism, theological challenges, socio-economic challenges, pastoral-care challenges
Boko Haram’s insurgence wreaked havoc in some Nigerian societies. The Michika Local Government Area of Adamawa State was specifically affected from September 2014 to February 2015, when the insurgents laid siege to the city. 

Towards a Biblical Theology of Missions in Western Africa

Author: Jiofack Kana C. Jésus

Dr. Jiofack Kana C. Jésus is an ordained minister of the Cameroon Baptist Convention. He is a missionary and linguist. He holds a Ph.D. in Missiology from the Nigerian Baptist Theological Seminary. He also earned a Maîtrise in Linguistics and African Language and a Master of Arts in Applied Linguistics from the University of Dschang, in Cameroon. His areas of research include African missiology, contextual theologies, African philosophy and ethics, and applied linguistics. He has written articles for theological conferences and completed major research works including “Ethical and Missiological Thoughts on African Single Women’s Longing for Children through Sperm Banks,” “Descartes’ Teleological Argument and African Eschatology: A Comparative Analysis for Contextual Apologetics,” and “A Critical Analysis of the Discourse of Femininity among the Yémba Christian Women in the West Region of Cameroon (M.A. dissertation). Jiofack Kana is married to Jacqueline and they have four children. He is currently a lecturer in the Department of World Missions and Intercultural Studies of the Cameroon Baptist Theological Seminary.

Keywords: Grassroots theology, Christology, worldview, missions
This article suggests a paradigm for a biblical theology of missions in Africa. The research was prompted by the observation that previous theological designs and models have laid emphasis on effectiveness and issues of identity. 

Emotive or Ethical? A Theological Reflection on Kenya’s Comprehensive Sexuality Education

Author: Kevin Muriithi Ndereba

Dr. Kevin Muriithi Ndereba holds a Ph.D. in Practical Theology from the University of South Africa. He initially worked as a power systems Engineer before pursuing theological education. After serving in pastoral ministry in the Presbyterian Church of East Africa, he now serves as a Lecturer and Head of Department, Practical Theology at Saint Paul’s University. He is also a Research Fellow at the Faculty of Theology, Stellenbosch University, South Africa and leads a ministry called Apologetics Kenya. Kevin’s research interests are in apologetics, youth ministry, and Practical Theology. 

Keywords: Adolescent reproductive and sexual health, Comprehensive Sexuality Education, Practical Theology, Public Theology, youth and family ministry
Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) has been lauded as a more inclusive, rights-based, and progressive approach to sexuality, particularly in its assumed impact on youth sexuality in Kenya. An emotive approach is proposed by both protagonists and antagonists of CSE. This article, however, seeks to ground the discussion on a theological and ethical approach, by way of utilizing a customized practical theological methodology.

Deconstructing Transhumanism: A Metanoia from Homo Deus to Homo Kenosus

Author: Samson Tadelle Demo

Dr. Samson Tadelle Demo has earned an MD from Gondar University in medicine, a BA from Addis Ababa University in Developmental Economics, a Post Graduate Diploma (PGD) and Master’s in Biblical and Theological Studies (MABTS) from the Ethiopian Graduate School of Theology (EGST). Currently, he works as a consultant General Practitioner at Mercy Care Ethiopia Health Care and engages in research activities in collaboration with EGST. He is the author of a book chapter entitled “After-Self Assertion: On a Paraclesis of a Political Theology of Kenosis” in the book Ethnic Diversity, National Unity: Moral Pedagogies of Togetherness for Ethiopians (2021). His interest lies in conducting interdisciplinary research that involves issues in theology, medicine, and economics.

Keywords: Biomedical model, transhumanism, Homo Deus, Homo Kenosus, cybernetic immortality
A debate is raging between bioconservatives and bioprogressives regarding transhumanism and its potential for yielding homo deus. However, the bioconservatives leave unscathed the philosophical underpinnings of transhumanism.

Book Review: Honor, Patronage, Kinship, and Purity: Unlocking New Testament Culture

Author: Daniel Nii Aboagye Aryeh

Dr. Daniel Nii Aboagye Aryeh (Ph.D.) is a Senior Lecturer and the Rector of Perez University College, Ghana. His research interests include New Testament studies, the gospels, biblical hermeneutics, church administration, gender studies, and Christian prophetism.

DeSilva, David A. 2022. Honor, Patronage, Kinship, and Purity: Unlocking New Testament Culture. 2nd ed. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press.xv,388 pp. ISBN 978-1-5140-0386-2. Approx. 595.66 ZAR (31.49 USD). Paperback.

Book Review: Spiritual Formation for the Global Church: A Multi-Denominational, Multi-Ethnic Approach

Author: Max Swart

Dr. Max Swart serves as the Association Director of the Luis Palau Association in the UK and Europe.  He graduated in 2022 with a Ph.D. from the North-West University. During the last fourteen years of working in the field of evangelism, he has obtained extensive and in-depth knowledge in this field. He has been involved with organizing some of the largest evangelistic outreaches in the United Kingdom in recent history. His work with churches inspired his interest in researching the discipleship of evangelical churches in the United Kingdom as part of his doctoral thesis. The synopsis of his research has been published in an accredited academic journal.

Brandt, Ryan A., and Frederick John eds. 2021. Spiritual Formation for the Global Church: A Multi-Denominational, Multi-Ethnic Approach. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press. x, 238 pp. ISBN: 978-0-8308-5518-6. Approx. 514.67 ZAR (27.99 USD). Paperback.

Drawing on the Collective Wisdom of the Past to Develop a Transformative, Scripture-Infused Eco-Theology for Land Use in Africa

Author: Katharine Norton

Ms. Katharine Norton is originally from the Republic of Ireland but has spent most of her adult life in Africa. She works with SIL Nigeria, specializing in Scripture use, helping people to apply the Bible in their language to all aspects of their daily lives. In 2017 she and her colleague Yunana Malgwi co-founded Faith and Farming, a Scripture use program that helps farmers, herders, and other land users to engage with the Bible in the language that they use as they work on the land or with their animals. The program has been well received and has been taught in communities and Bible colleges in Nigeria, to participants from seventeen African countries, and it is also branching out into Asia. When Katharine is not writing or teaching, she enjoys working on the two acres around her house where she experiments with small-scale, environmentally friendly agricultural projects that can bless local farmers, students, and pastors.

Keywords: Local languages, traditional land use, Scripture use, indigenous wisdom, sustainable agriculture
How can eco-theology impact people, communities, countries, and continents? Two things are necessary. First, a thorough engagement with the beliefs, attitudes, and actions, both past and present, that make up a community’s interactions with each other and with their environment. 

Becoming Ruth or the Lamenting Psalmist: Finding Hope in Pain

Author: June F. Dickie

Dr. June F. Dickie (Ph.D., UKZN) is a Bible translator and researcher with particular interests in the Psalms, Performance, and Psychological Hermeneutics. She has worked in various communities since 1994, mainly in Africa. Currently, she is part of a team developing a new methodology for translating Psalms, using orality and performance. One of the pilot studies is with the colored community (RSA), helping them to translate the Bible into their language, Kaaps.

Keywords: Trauma healing, Ruth, lament psalms, empirical, community
The need for trauma healing has significantly increased in recent years, and new innovative and cost-effective ways must be found to help sufferers, particularly those in economically challenged areas. In this study, literature trauma theory is applied, using the biblical story of Ruth and some lament psalms, to help sufferers find a measure of healing.

Book Review: The Rewards of Learning Greek and Hebrew: Discovering the Richness of the Bible in its Original Languages

Author: Megan Braithwaite

Rev. Megan Braithwaite has an M.Th. in Bible Translation from the University of the Free State and is currently completing her Ph.D. in Hebrew and other ancient translations. A lecturer of Biblical Hebrew and Greek since 2010, she is currently the Head of Languages at BTC. Married with three adult children, she and her husband serve on the eldership of their local church.

McDowell, Catherine L., and Philip H. Towner. 2021. The Rewards of Learning Greek and Hebrew: Discovering the Richness of the Bible in its Original Languages. Peabody: Hendrickson Academic. xvii, 134 pp. ISBN: 978-1-68307-401-4. Approx. 195 ZAR (11 USD). Kindle.

Spiritual Warfare in African Pentecostalism in the Light of Ephesians

Author: Kevin G. Smith

D.Litt, University of Stellenbosch; PhD, SATS.
Kevin is the Principal at the South African Theological Seminary. His research interests are broad within the domain of theology, although studying and teaching the Bible is his first love.


Smith K G 2018. Spiritual Warfare in African Pentecostalism in the Light of Ephesians. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 70-80.

Western Evangelicals tend to affirm belief in demonic spirits in theory, but live as if they do not exist. By contrast, African neo-Pentecostals take the reality and the risks of insidious spiritual powers seriously. A central feature of the worldview (cosmology) of these churches is the heartfelt belief that evil, hostile spiritual beings exert a real influence on the physical realm. Much of the liturgy of these churches centres around the spiritual conflict between believers and demonic forces…

Towards and Assessment of Pentecostalisation in French-speaking African Nations with Special Reference to the Democratic Republic of Congo

Author: Jesse Kipimo

Dr Kipimo is the author of several Christian books in the area of practical theology. He has served as a lecturer at Pan Africa Theological college (Zimbabwe) and Trans Africa Theological College (Zambia). He also served as academic dean and senior lecturer at The Assemblies of God Bible college (Lubumbashi-DRC). He is the founder of Central African school of Missiology (DRC). He is currently serving as a lecturer, and the coordinator of the Bachelor of Theology Honours program at the South African Theological Seminary (SATS). Jesse is the senior pastor of Liberating Truth Mission church international (Lubumbashi- DRC), and an external postgraduate examiner at the UNISA.


Kipimo J 2018. Towards and Assessment of Pentecostalisation in French-speaking African Nations with Special Reference to the Democratic Republic of Congo. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 81-94.

The nature of the Pentecostal spirituality stands as a key contributing factor to the pentecostalisation process taking place in the church of Africa, especially in French-speaking African nations like the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Dimensions of this spirituality accommodate the culture, the identity and the nature of African people. Consequently, most Africans find themselves at home within Pentecostal communities unlike in any other mainline churches…

Veni Sanctus Spiritus: The Coming of the Holy Spirit in Inaugurated Eschatology and the Emergence of an Enchanted African Christian Society

Author: Robert Falconer

BTech Arch, NMMU; PhD, SATS.
Robert practised architecture for seven years, after which he went to Kenya as a missionary. He is a Research Supervisor for MTh and PhD candidates at the South African Theological Seminary. His primary research interests are in Systematic Theology, Philosophical-Theology, New Testament, soteriology and eschatology.


Falconer R 2018. Veni Sanctus Spiritus: The Coming of the Holy Spirit in Inaugurated Eschatology and the Emergence of an Enchanted African Christian Society. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 95-114.

It is argued in this paper that the Holy Spirit is an agent of an inaugurated eschatology, the tight tension of the kingdom today and the kingdom to come. The Holy Spirit comes offering much more than the charismata, he comes as the eschatological Spirit bringing gifts of change and renewal for an eschatological reality (of which the charismata are a part). Such a reality finds its home primarily in the eschatological community, the church. Pentecostalisation has enjoyed considerable influence in Africa, a continent that is traditionally enchanted…

Reforming Theological Education in the Light of the Pentecostalisation of Christianity in the Global South

Author: Annag Asumang

Dr Asumang is a consultant with Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust, United Kingdom. A Clinician in Intensive Care Medicine, Annang obtained his Ph.D. from SATS in 2010, and has made a significant contribution as an academic and researcher.


Asumang A 2018. Reforming Theological Education in the Light of the Pentecostalisation of Christianity in the Global South. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 115-148.

Recent church growth has largely been driven by pentecostalisation of Christianity in the global south, and this fact has significant implications for shaping theological education. After briefly surveying some promising educational responses to the phenomenon, this paper argues against a post-colonialist introspective strategy, and instead proposes that seminaries in the south be consumed by the global dimensions of the mantle that the Spirit has placed on them…

Is Neuroscience Challenging the Pentecostal View of Spiritual Experiences and Practice?

Author: Mark Pretorius

PhD, UP.
Dr Pretorius (Senior Academic, SATS) is a research associate in the department of Dogmatics and Ethics at the University of Pretoria. Mark has published a number of books and papers, specialising in the field of science and theology.


Pretorius M 2018. Is Neuroscience Challenging the Pentecostal View of Spiritual Experiences and Practice? Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 149-159.

It is difficult to describe the relationship of Pentecostals2 to the natural sciences concerning spiritual experiences and practice as proposed by Amos Yong (2011)3 a pentecostal scholar, since most Pentecostals seemingly advocate a fundamentalist worldview. This often results in epistemic boundaries vis-à-vis the value of natural science in better understanding spiritual experiences and practice. Yet, one cannot ignore that the natural sciences are making tremendous progress in understanding the cognitive side to these experiences…

Pentecostalisation of the African Church

Author: Modisa Mzondi

D.Litt et D.Phil (University of Johannesburg)
Dr Mzondi earned two doctoral degrees in theology from the University of Johannesburg. He is a founder and director of Back to Basics-Kago Leswa and is also a pastor of ‘Let My People Go Ministries.’ He also serves as supervisor at South African Seminary (SATS). He has a passion for children, youth, families and leadership training. His interests are in Ubuntu, African theology, African womanism and Pentecostalism articles.


Mzondi M 2018. Pentecostalisation of the African Church. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 40-54.

Over the years, theologians have made several attempts to link William Seymour’s 1906 Azusa street revival to various roots. It has been linked to (a) the socio-economic-political context of the 1900s in the United States of America; (b) African slaves’ spirituality, and (c) the Methodist revival. This paper continues the quest to link William Seymour’s 1906 Azusa street revival to another root, namely, Enoch Sontonga’s song, Nkosi sikelel’ iAfrika…

Complementing Christ? A Soteriological Evaluation of the Anointed Objects of the African Pentecostal Prophets

Author: Collium Banda

PhD (University of Stellenbosch)
Dr Banda is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the North-West University in South Africa. He has held a church pastorate and military chaplaincy in Zimbabwe. He is also an adjunct lecturer at the Theological College of Zimbabwe. His research interests include African Pentecostalism, Christian doctrines in the African public space, African traditional religions, African indigenous knowledge systems and Christianity in African contexts of poverty.


Banda C 2018. Complementing Christ? A Soteriological Evaluation of the Anointed Objects of the African Pentecostal Prophets. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 55-69.

How can we soteriologically evaluate the growing reliance on the anointed objects of the Pentecostal prophets among Christians in Africa? The popularity of anointed mantles is a serious challenge in the contemporary African church and raises many theological questions, not least, the soteriological question of the sufficiency of Christ’s salvation in the African believer…

Keynote Address: Pentecostal Prophecy: A Pastoral Response to the Challenges of South African Xenophopbia

Author: Marius Nel

DTh (UNISA); DD (UP); PhD (UP); PhD (Radboud University).
Prof Nel holds doctorates in Practical Theology, Church history, Old Testament, and New Testament. He is a pastor of the AFM of SA. He was a lecturer at Auckland Park Theological Seminary for 23 years. He is the chair, Ecumenism: Pentecostalism and Neo-Pentecostalism and research professor at the Unit for Reformed Theology, Faculty of Theology, Potchefstroom campus, North-West University. His specializing fields are apocalypticism in the Old and New Testament, history of the Pentecostal movement, and Pentecostal hermeneutics.


Nel M 2018. Pentecostal Prophecy: A Pastoral Response to the Challenges of South African Xenophobia. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 20-39.

Displacement is a challenge that many countries in Africa face, and in times of crisis citizens of these countries tend to cool their anger and frustration inter alia through violent acts of xenophobia. Another feature of the African scene (as a part of the global south) is the growth of the Pentecostal movement in its diverse forms, with classical Pentecostals, charismatic Pentecostals in mainline churches, neo-pentecostal groups already outnumbering members of the Roman Catholic Church in Africa, and the effect of a process of pentecostalisation followed by some mainline churches to integrate Pentecostal practices in order to keep their members…

Editorial: Pentecostalisation and Faith in the Global South

Authors: Kevin G. Smith and Batanayi I. Manyika

Kevin G. Smith: (D.Litt, University of Stellenbosch; PhD, SATS).
Kevin is the Principal at the South African Theological Seminary.

Batanayi I. Manyika: (MPhil {Bible Interpretation}, University of Stellenbosch).
Batanayi is an Academic at the South African Theological Seminary, currently working on a PhD in New Testament, with focus on Paul’s letter to Philemon.


Smith K G and Manyika B I 2018. Editorial: Pentecostalisation and Faith in the Global South. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 1-4.

Provided that we adopt a broad and inclusive definition of Pentecostal and Pentecostalism (Anderson 2002; 2004), there remains no doubt that Pentecostalism (including Charismatic and Neo-Pentecostal forms) has become the dominant expression of Christianity in Africa. This is acknowledged by friend and foe alike…

Keynote Address: The Pentecost Paradigm for Pentecostalism: Power for Witness

Author: Craig Keener

PhD (Duke University)
Dr Keener is a New Testament professor at Asbury Theological Seminary, has authored twenty-five books; many have won national or international awards. Over one million copies are in circulation, the most popular being The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament, which provides cultural background on each passage of the New Testament. He has also authored 100 academic articles.


Keener C 2018. The Pentecost Paradigm for Pentecostalism: Power for Witness. Conspectus: Anvil Talks Edition, p. 5-19.

Historically, Pentecostalism has located its central biblical paradigm in Acts, especially in the Pentecost narrative. It therefore seems appropriate to introduce this discussion of Pentecostalism with a discussion of the narrative of Pentecost in Acts 1-2. This narrative includes the promise of being baptised in the Spirit to receive power for cross-cultural mission…

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December 2018
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