Light In The Dark Continent: Historical Background
Apr 15th, 2020 by Thomas Irvin
The Dark Continent:
Darkness is defined as the absence of light. Such a statement may seem, at first thought, commonplace. If that is so, why has Africa been so long regarded as the Dark Continent? Not due to darkened skin that covers beautiful faces, but rather spiritual darkness which covers the soul. Spiritual darkness would mean a lack of spiritual light, and no spiritual light means no access to Jesus Christ!
Africa has not long been without a gospel witness. God himself reveals in his word a desire for this majestic continent to receive the knowledge of the truth. We learn in the Bible of a certain Eunuch who served the Queen of Ethiopia. He was traveling from Jerusalem back to his home country. As he traveled in his chariot, he read the book of the prophet Isaiah. His heart was stirred as he learned of the man of sorrows. Isaiah continued, "He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken from the earth."
Who indeed shall declare his generation in the dark continent? The lovely Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world, who will thrust this light into the darkness? Who even has such an interest? God does - it was the desire of God's heart that a Spirit-filled preacher by the name of Philip go to this Eunuch, and beginning at the same scripture he preached unto him, Jesus! This would be the start of a long drawn out battle between light and darkness for the souls of men across this expansive landmass. Africa's spiritual condition appears just as dark today as any time before, but her heart is still as receptive as the Ethiopian Eunuch. Africans across the continent still warmly ask "How can I lest some man should guide me?" But darkness persists so long as there is a lack of light, who will go and preach to them? Who will tell them about Jesus?
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