Some missionaries believed that the Lord had raised people up for the good of His church and for the good of the nation. In other words, Christian missionaries were aggressively vocal against the injustices meted out to, and oppression of, the native inhabitants. Two thousand years of Christianity […] Rather than only pointing you to some enlightening great teachings and deep truths, he, by his power, transforms hearts that are dead to God into hearts that are alive to God. The tenets of Christianity are recorded in the book of books called the “Holy Bible.” It … In order words, the phenomenon help to put an end to some of the traditional religion rituals conducted by sacrificing human being to appease the gods. Africa, and specifically Nigeria is subject to many problems, including corruption, greed, continued sexual immorality and violence. Christians have built roads, orphanages, schools, hospitals, etc. Some missionary enterprises did not just focus on evangelization, but displayed a holistic approach to the missionary enterprise encompassing the whole spectrum of human activity, which included commerce, Christianity, and civilization (meaning good government, education etc.). Indeed, even Prof. Richard Dawkins, perhaps the most vociferous atheist of our time, admitted in a debate with Prof. John Lennox that science did grow out of a religious tradition. Churches and missionaries advocated mass education, because of their emphasis on the need for all believers to read the Bible in his or her own language. EARLY AFRICAN CHRISTIANITY Your email address will not be published. We shall begin by examining the term ‘Christianity’ before discussing the impact of Christianity in Nigeria in terms of education, socio-politics, and health. In places where Africans had practiced a separate form of religion, had their own societal rules and ethical laws Western Christianity was imposed as a method of guised colonialism. Wherever Christian missionaries and workers have gone, there has been tremendous work in social reform. In parts of Nigeria, mission work would not be complete without serious attention to health care. Christianity, as a book religion and as an institution concerned with moral life of the black people has made a significant contribution in the introduction and continued development of formal western education in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa. The introduction of medical services in Christian mission stations contributed a great deal to the good health enjoyed by Nigerians converts to Christianity, particularly because this integrated approach to health care also eliminated the many epidemics which, historically, had ravaged the Nigerian and African population. There was a liveliness, a curiosity, an engagement with the world - a directness in their dealings with others - that seemed to be missing in traditional African life. The Christian Gospel is not just about getting souls into heaven, but bettering conditions on planet earth as well. The concept of universal human rights and equality comes exclusively from the biblical idea that all people are created in the image of God. Medical services served as a necessary ingredient in bringing the people to medical treatment for their ailments and for relief of their physical suffering: whereas soul healing and salvation were left to the Priest who was endowed with powers of providing spiritual cleansing. The African Human Rights Law Journal (AHRLJ) is a peer-reviewed journal on human rights related topics in Africa. the influence of Christianity on Africans’ lives is extremely significant. The Alexandria-based church initially used Greek, and it was not until the late 2nd century that both the liturgy and the scriptures were translated into three native languages. Research Cyber Team hopes this article was helpful. Africa borrowed a large sum of money from different nations, bankers and companies that led these lenders to force Africa in cheapen their currency and exert political influence over Africa. Mass education fosters democracy by increasing exposure to democratic ideals, promoting economic growth and the rise of a middle class, and dispersing influence beyond a small elite. The language of the document betrays this fact: “… We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. Most Christians believe in one God in three Persons (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit) and that Jesus is the Son of God who rose from the dead after being crucified; a Christian hopes to attain eternal life after death through faith in Jesus Christ…”. The new international boundaries were “drawn by Europeans, for Europeans,” and paid little a… By the end of the 2nd century it had reached the region around Carthage.In the 4th century, the Aksumite empire in modern-day Eritrea and Ethiopia became one of the first regions in the world to adopt Christianity as an official religion and the Nubian kingdoms of Nobatia, Makuria and Alodia followed two centuries later. Christianity is targeted by critics of colonialism because the tenets of the religion were used to justify the actions of the colonists. In ancient cultures, a wife was the property of her husband. Background. Jesus even encouraged Martha to do likewise (Luke 10:38-42). Mark the Evangelist made history in the year 43 when he became the first bishop to serve in the Orthodox Church of Alexandria. Religion in Africa does not encourage creativity, invention or critical thinking, because of its conservative or static. 1 Comment on Positive and negative effects of colonialism Colonialism refers to the act of taking control over a country politically and exploiting in economically. Any student of the history of modern science cannot deny that scientific inquiry grew out of a religious tradition. Catechists were also trained who helped in the spread of Christianity for example, in Uganda by 1911 many people had been converted and many cathedrals and churches were built like the Kikuyu churches (Charismatic Arathi or spirit churches.) Most religious groups discriminate against women in so many ways. Election of Speaker of the 8th Parliamen, GJA charges police to investigate death threats against Mana, I pray for an end to election votes buying – Apostle Onyinah, You have enough reason to thank the Lord — Evangelist Atats, Christians must stop cravings for inordinate earthly materia, Otumfuo Osei-Tutu Has Been Vindicated on Mahama Concession F, Dr Bawumia to lead the NPP; Northerners & Zongos are watchin, Be Decorous When Discussing About Our Presidential Candidate, What Has "Otani Gyimifoc" Have To Do With Agyapa Royalties L, Jean Mensa Forgot; She Could Have Aborted The 2 Kids. However, African Christianity ultimately developed its own special character in which local traditions played a role. May 7, 2014 JT Eberhard. Slavery: An Unlikely Catalyst. 1. Today, membership in Christian churches is growing faster in Africa than anywhere else in the world. 344 Numerous scholars have drawn attention to the flourishing of Christianity in contemporary Africa in such a way that they underline a critical shift in the epicenter of Christianity from the North to the South. Lack of Progress: Overtly religious societies cannot progress as they do not allow free thinking. The corrupt dictators wasted the money borrowed, and then the rehabilitation of the devastated economy of Africa did not take effect, burying the social issues in education and health. What I will argue is that at least when it comes to Christianity, the cure for religiously induced evils is exactly the opposite of what Mr Okyere tried to suggest. However, the more the Christian faith becomes a defining element in the believers and the more they practice it as a lifestyle with strong ties to its biblical origins and with intelligent commitment, the better off African societies will be. In particular, we show that the diversity of investments brought by Christian missionaries to the region had different, and sometimes conflicting, effects on long-term development. Women were normally left to attend to domestic affairs at home but Jesus allowed women to travel with him and his twelve disciples (Luke 8:1-3). In his book, A Time of Transitions (2006), he emphatically observes that it is Christianity alone that accounts for the liberty, conscience, human rights, and democracy, which have become the benchmarks of western civilization. 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South Africa Correspondence to: David Adamo Email: adamodt@yahoo.com Postal address: Private bag X20 Hatfield, Pretoria 0028, South Africa Dates: Received: 06 Oct. 2009 Accepted: 11 May 2011 Published: 31 Oct. 2011 How to cite this article: Adamo, D.T., 2011, ‘Christianity and the African traditional religion(s): The postcolonial round of Now ‘more religion’ here does not mean that the cure for religiously induced evils lies in increased blind religious zeal (which is at the very heart of the problems observed by Mr Okyere in his article). Historically speaking, it cannot be gainsaid that Christians have been very proactive when it comes to the establishment of hospitals, schools and NGOs that are helping to alleviate poverty in Africa. About his observations, Mr Parris, confessed, “It confounds my ideological beliefs, stubbornly refuses to fit my world view, and has embarrassed my growing belief that there is no God.” I will refer to some of his observations in my responses to the points raised in Mr Okyere’s article. FEATURED: Live Updates: Ghanaians Go To The Polls... On 17 August 2016, an article titled, “The Damning Effects Of Religion In Africa,” written by Kofi Asamoah Okyere was published on Modernghana.com in which the writer sought to establish a case that religion impeded the development of Africa. People (even non-religious ones) have different ways of understanding and interpreting things; some are reasonable, others are not. Does Christianity lack Critical thinking? Here are ten ways missions has impacted Africa. Under the influence of Christianity, education, personal responsibility, personal morality and individual freedom are all improving. There are so many negative effects of religion which unfortunately our society don't pay much attention to, and these have a more debilitating effect on our forward match to being a more matured and developed place. Does Christianity discourage Science and curiosity? 8. Thus, the advent of colonial masters led to the introduction of a new religion, Christianity, which is added to the two available religions, African traditional religion already exiting then. He is able to transform the human heart. It is rather interesting to note that London’s The Times newspaper, on December 27, 2008, published an incisive article by Matthew Parris, a British Political Writer and an atheist, titled “As an atheist, I truly believe Africa needs God,” in which the writer came to the opposite conclusion from that of Mr Okyere. Such an argument clearly will be dead on arrival. Because it is "written" the devil or Lucifer is the root of all evil, we blame the devil for almost all our problems. The HIPC resulted in some positive and negative effects on the economy in Africa. Human Rights. I seek, in this article, to contest the claim that the Christian faith, as one of the major religions in Africa, predominantly fosters negative effects (like conflicts, laziness, fear, lack of curiosity/creativity and violence), and argue that Christianity has been a contributor to progress and development and also a force for more peaceful societies in Africa and the world. There is a direct link between religion and laziness which contributes to poverty in Africa; religion makes people lackadaisical in their attitude towards finding practical ways to improve their undesirable living conditions. 2 hours ago, You have enough reason to thank the Lord — Evangelist Atats... The role of traders who collaborated with western missionaries can therefore be neither ignored nor denied. Conversion to Christ and the advancement of his kingdom necessitates transformation and this, in turn, is not only related to certain democratic values but, importantly, is based on true love for God and for one’s fellow human beings. It is not surprisingly, therefore, literacy rates till today remain higher in Christian dominated regions of Nigeria compared to Islam-dominated areas. He gave two definitions of religion as follows: “Religion can be loosely defined as a belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny. In African thought, good health is regarded as equal to life itself, which is why health is among the highest aspirations of Nigerians and black Africans. The ones who have power are called colonists whereas the indigenous people make up the colonies. His recommendation, therefore, was that African societies should put less focus on religion and a major focus on science, technology and critical thinking as this will move our development goals forward. However, it is clear that, as far as HIV and AIDS are concerned, that the church’s assistance is limited to psychological, limited financial assistance, and house care – cooking, cleaning, occasional child care and so forth. Also read: Positive and negative effects of globalization. Why Would A Loving God Send People To Hell? Interestingly, this is precisely the message of Christianity - there is something desperately wrong (the Bible calls it sin) in the heart of man and Jesus holds the remedy. Religion is a major cause of physical conflicts and doctrinal disputes in Africa and the world as a whole. All of them were imbedded in positive and negative categories as explained by;- The missionary societies converted the west African people and generally in the whole of Africa into Christianity. The goal in introducing medical services in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa was to provide Africans with a more holistic service, given that, as far as the African is concerned, there is no separation between the physical and the spiritual dimension of human life. Modern Ghana will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article. Innovation and scientific inventions are only possible when people are encouraged to think out of the box. Even the USA’s declaration of independence document which has shaped that nation was drafted by men largely influenced by a Judeo/Christian worldview. The Nexus of Career Bureaucrats and Political Appointees, Haruna Iddrisu Is a Plagiarist Haunted by His Shady Past, How Selfishly John Dramani Mahama is Deliberately Playing Ghana into the Exploitation Agenda by the Western World, Endings for Beginnings: Reaching a Brexit Deal, The Inspiring Effects Of Christianity In Africa. Hence, they were totally against the horrors of slavery and every cruelty. A whole belief system must first be supplanted.”, R. G. ColemanE-mail: [email protected]Blog: www.rgcoleman.wordpress.com, The author has 14 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: RobertGColeman, Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of Modern Ghana. Thus when a claim to truth is made by any person or religion, all we have to do is check to see if it corresponds to reality as it is and also whether it is logically sound. More importantly, the church also provides people living with HIV with a community. Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Even Jesus himself cautioned his followers not to live by the sword (Matthew 26:52). Their works are available in libraries and bookstores for anyone willing to examine them. Today, HIV infection and AIDS are particularly prevalent in sub-Saharan Africa. The more the Christian faith is reduced to shallow religiosity that is essentially targeted at motivating, empowering and giving meaning to the everyday life issues that are shaped by economic or national interests, the worse off African societies will be. Copyright © 2017 ResearchCyber.com. Regarding the claim of that various sects and religions believing that their way is the approved one, it rather goes to show what we all know by common experience of the nature of men and of the nature of truth. The traders and missionaries believed an educated population to be a precondition for the spread of commerce and Christianity; the first European educational ventures were a direct product of their activities. For instance, missionaries and their supporters were the main lobbyists for the immediate abolition of slavery and other forms of forced labor in the whole of Africa. The last debt crisis in 2005 was resolved with help from the heavily indebted poor countries scheme (HIPC). W.E.H. The heart of the Christian GospelThe problems enumerated in Mr Okyere’s article go to show that it is the heart of man that is depraved. Negative Effects of Religion 1. As a result, it is true to say that the African health landscape changed for the better: there was a decline in child and maternal mortality rates, and an increase in the life expectancy of Nigerians. These missionaries believed that the task of fighting against or opposing the slave trade was indeed the work of those filled with the Holy Spirit. The journal publishes articles on the work of African regional and sub-regional human rights bodies as well as the work of international bodies related to Africa. The full list is shown in the table below, with current population and subregion (based on the United Nations official statistics). Our findings show that Christianity have been significant in all the three spheres of life. In order for Christianity to make significant progress in its evangelization activities, Nigerian people’s literacy and numeracy had to improve. Many false preachers within Christianity, as well as non-Christian critics of the Bible, often fall into this trap. effects of missionaries in East Africa They spread Christianity and baptized many converts. Hence, Christianity would provide principles for moral guidance, while legitimate commerce and education would encourage Nigerians to produce their own goods and to trade with Europeans. In this article, I will support the above thesis by countering Mr Okyere’s arguments about the undesirable character of Christianity and then conclude with a little explanation of what the core Christian teaching is. I think anyone who makes this charge should first take a look at how Jesus treated women and then juxtapose it with any other practice he observes amongst professing Christians and then come to a conclusion as to whether what he has observed is consistent with Jesus’ or is a departure from Jesus’. Religion in Africa and the harmful effects R eligion is the most popular business in Africa today. Religious doctrines create a sense of fear or timidity in its adherents. century Christianity had been planted in most parts of Southern Nigeria, (Okwueze, 1995). In this article, we describe the impact of Christianity in Nigeria. I seek, in this article, to contest the claim that the Christian faith, as one of the major religions in Africa, predominantly fosters negative effects (like conflicts, laziness, fear, lack of curiosity/creativity and violence), and argue that Christianity has been a contributor to progress and development and also a force for more peaceful societies in Africa and the world. Missionaries made a point of ensuring that hospitals and other health facilities were erected in their area of missionary activity. As one scholar has warned, any time a text is taken out of its context it can become an excuse for justifying anything at all. 40 harmful effects of Christianity. In other words, the West has abandoned God but is still stealing from God. Modern Europe still feeds itself from this religious source. The missionary and the medical practitioner were therefore equally significant as far as the spread of Christianity was concerned. 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