December 8, 2010

Answering the Prosperity Gospel in Cape Town, South Africa

The Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization in Cape Town, South Africa brought forth much fruit—especially in responses to the devastating errors of the Word-faith movement and “prosperity gospel.”

Preparing the way, J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu published an extensive advance paper, “From ‘Calvary Road’ to ‘Harvesters International’: An African Perspective on the Cross and Gospel of Prosperity.”

During the congress, Femi Adeleye (right) delivered a major statement at a multiplex session titled “Poverty, Prosperity and the Gospel,” recorded on video here.

Daniel Bourdanné offered a well-reasoned assessment of the movement’s errors with his online article “The Prosperity Gospel: All That Glitters Is Not Gold.”

And advancing the online “global conversation” on this topic, Ruth Padilla DeBorst attacked prosperity-purveyors in “The Gospel of Greed,” but mistakenly stated that these “Self-appointed apostles [who] are accountable to no one in matters theological, financial, or ethical” are “all men.” Evidently DeBorst hasn’t met neopentecostal preachers Imelda Namutebi Kula of Uganda and Margaret Wanjiru of Kenya and their counterparts.

September 8, 2010

NEW: African Apologetics Podcast

ACFAR now has a podcast, available worldwide via iTunes!

It features selected messages from ACFAR’s March 2010 conference and radio broadcasts by coordinator Rodgers Atwebembeire on the “Words of Hope” program.

Tell a friend!

June 18, 2010


Be sure to listen to “Words of Hope” in Kampala on Spirit FM (96.6) each Wednesday at 8:30 PM (repeats on Sunday 7:30 PM).

ACFAR coordinator Rodgers Atwebembeire (shown at right) is presenting a series of studies on discernment and the defense of the faith.

Tell a friend!

May 11, 2010

Exposing the “Bio Disc” in Africa

The Bio Disc scandal finally receives some long-overdue press coverage. In “QuestNet pyramid scheme drops anchor in Africa” we read of the multi-level marketing company’s exploits in Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, and elsewhere. The article’s unnamed author alleges that “The sale of [QuestNet] products is fraudulent and targets the poorest of society—those who are desperate to make money quickly. The scam destroys relationships, because it’s to family and friends that recruited salesmen then sell the scheme to themselves. They convince their friends into indebting themselves in order to enroll in the scheme, and later find themselves responsible for both their own and their friends’ financial struggles when the pyramid collapses.”

Read our evaluation of the Amezcua Bio Disc here.

Background: A damaging report on QuestNet was broadcast by American Public Media in February of 2008. Read their report here, or listen here. QuestNet was banned in Rwanda in August of 2009, according to this report, and was the subject of a “sting operation” in Armenia in December of the same year, according to this report.

QuestNet is under criminal investigation in Turkey, according to a May 28, 2010 online report by the respected news daily Hürriyet: “The Turkey branch of an international Ponzi scheme that collected millions of dollars from thousands of people has collapsed after police raids against the company., which defines itself as an ‘international direct selling brand that utilizes network marketing combined with e-commerce,’ victimized nearly 20,000 people in Turkey, according to government officials. The company, which is headquartered in Hong Kong, has been banned in many countries.”

April 28, 2010

A Major New Survey on Religion in Africa

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life has released the results of an important survey, Tolerance and Tension: Islam and Christianity in Sub-Saharan Africa. The executive summary notes that “sub-Saharan Africa is clearly among the most religious places in the world. In many countries across the continent, roughly nine-in-ten people or more say religion is very important in their lives. By this key measure, even the least religiously inclined nations in the region score higher than the United States, which is among the most religious of the advanced industrial countries.”

Of special interest is the finding that “Despite the dominance of Christianity and Islam, traditional African religious beliefs and practices have not disappeared. Rather, they coexist with Islam and Christianity. Whether or not this entails some theological tension, it is a reality in people's lives:
Large numbers of Africans actively participate in Christianity or Islam yet also believe in witchcraft, evil spirits, sacrifices to ancestors, traditional religious healers, reincarnation and other elements of traditional African religions.

The report also explains that “in every country surveyed that has a substantial Christian population, at least half of Christians expect that Jesus will return to earth during their lifetime. And in every country surveyed that has a substantial Muslim population, roughly 30% or more of Muslims expect to personally witness the re-establishment of the caliphate, the golden age of Islamic rule that followed the death of Muhammad.”

Significantly, “
By their own reckoning, neither Christians nor Muslims in the region know very much about each other’s faith. In most countries, fewer than half of Christians say they know either some or a great deal about Islam, and fewer than half of Muslims say they know either some or a great deal about Christianity. Moreover, people in most countries surveyed, especially Christians, tend to view the two faiths as very different rather than as having a lot in common.”

Major newspapers in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and other countries provided local insights on the survey, which involved “more than 25,000 face-to-face interviews in more than 60 languages or dialects in 19 countries, representing 75% of the total population of sub-Saharan Africa.”

You can download the full report here.

March 17, 2010

In the news: Kanungu, ten years later

Uganda’s largest daily newspaper, The New Vision, has published four articles on the tenth anniversary of the tragedy sparked by the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments of God:I survived Kanungu fire by a whisker,” “Kibwetere’s daughter speaks out on the cult,” “Kibwetere land still unclaimed,” and “Ten years after Kanungu inferno.” The cult’s ringleaders have not been apprehended, and a promised government inquiry has yet to begin.

February 28, 2010

Online Registration for March Conference Begins

You can now register online for ACFAR’s upcoming conference on cults and biblical discernment.

The event will be held in Kampala, Uganda from March 15–17 and include such international speakers as Robert M. Bowman, Jr. (pictured), Eric Pement, and J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu. Scheduled topics include Branhamism, the Word-Faith movement, Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witnesses, indigenous cults and sects, the “Bio Disc” and alternative therapies, the ongoing tragedy of child sacrifice, and more.

Tell a friend—and be in prayer for this landmark gathering!

February 11, 2010

Mormonism Advances in Uganda

The Mormon Church News has announced the formation of the first LDS “stake” (equivalent to a diocese) in Uganda on January 17. The cult’s first branch in the East African nation was organized in 1991.

Read the complete story here—and pray that the Christians of Uganda will be ready to recognize and respond in love to the missionary efforts of this deeply heretical movement.

February 5, 2010

ACFAR Announces Its First Major Conference

Mark your calendar now for The Bible and the Challenge of Discernment (1 Thessalonians 5:21–22), a national conference for pastors and Christian leaders to be held on the campus of Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda on March 15–17. The event is being held to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the Kanungu Tragedy.

Noted speakers include:

Dr. J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu (Trinity Theological Seminary, Ghana)

Robert M. Bowman, Jr. (Institute for Religious Research, USA)

Eric Pement (Centers for Apologetics Research, USA)

Robby Muhumuza (Leadershipwise Africa, Uganda)

Among the topics to be addressed are the Christian’s call to discernment and defending the faith; the integrity and authority of Scripture; the Word-Faith movement; indigenous cults and sects; the Branham movement; Jehovah’s Witnesses; Mormonism; and the challenge of child sacrifice.

The conference is being jointly sponsored by ACFAR and the Kampala Evangelical School of Theology (KEST).

We truly covet your prayers as we prepare for this event!

Space is limited! For registration and additional information, visit the conference web page.

January 11, 2010

A False Prophet Spreads His Confusion Across Africa

Harold Camping, the head of the international Family Radio broadcasting empire, is predicting the end of the world for May 21, 2011. (He previously stirred controversy by declaring that 1994 would bring the end of the world and mark the coming of Christ, and by announcing “the end of the church age” in early 2002.)

Camping is taking his latest prophecy around the globe, with a special emphasis on Africa. According to one recently published article, “Family Radio is searching for people who can help them expand their range of broadcast languages. Included in the proposed new mix are Arabic, Armenian, Creole and Khmer. By far the largest component on the list, though, is African languages—and especially South African languages. If Family Radio is successful, listeners will soon be able to hear about the imminent Second Coming of Christ in Sindebele, Northern Sotho, Sesotho, Shona, SiSwati, Tswana, Xhosa and Zulu.” Billboards promoting the false prophet’s message have been placed in Lesotho (above), Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Ghana.

Pray with us that evangelical churches across Africa will actively resist this latest abuse of Camping’s media platform
—and help believers to “Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil” (1 Thess. 5:21–22).