Introduction to Missiology    Ch.21 Traditional Religions
An Historic ProblemColonial Missionaries ignored the religious heritage of receptor people groupsChristianity was introd...
Animistic Worldviews Animism – beliefs in personal spiritual beings Animatism – beliefs in impersonal spiritual  forces...
Characteristics of AfricanTraditional Religion There exists a remote High God that does not interact with  man. The phys...
Diagram     Remote High God Living Dead      Spirits           (impersonalized dead)       Created Spirits       Intermedi...
Compared to ChristianityTraditional religion is local and based on myth.Christianity is universal and based on historic ...
Culture ClashWhen Christianity fails to address felt needs arising from within the traditional religious system, circumst...
Missiological ImplicationsDoes African traditional religion form the base upon which to build Christian truth?When does ...
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Ch.21 african traditional religion

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Ch.21 african traditional religion

  1. 1. Introduction to Missiology Ch.21 Traditional Religions
  2. 2. An Historic ProblemColonial Missionaries ignored the religious heritage of receptor people groupsChristianity was introduced in a form that reflected western worldview and cultureThe long-term result has been reaction against non-indigenous Christianity reflected in syncretistic native church movements
  3. 3. Animistic Worldviews Animism – beliefs in personal spiritual beings Animatism – beliefs in impersonal spiritual forces Primal religion – historic beliefs held by a people group from their beginning Traditional religion – religious beliefs reflecting traditions passed down through many generations of a people group. The most common term.
  4. 4. Characteristics of AfricanTraditional Religion There exists a remote High God that does not interact with man. The physical world is charged with spiritual energy that influences the flow of life. – This energy is distributed in a “lumpy” way. The struggle is constant to balance and appease spiritual forces to avert disaster and elicit blessing. – Life often seems out of control. Time centers on the past and present. The living dead are involved still in the daily affairs of their village.
  5. 5. Diagram Remote High God Living Dead Spirits (impersonalized dead) Created Spirits IntermediariesRealm of humanity and things
  6. 6. Compared to ChristianityTraditional religion is local and based on myth.Christianity is universal and based on historic narrative.Result is contrasting epistemologies – Esoteric truth claims anchored in myth – Propositional truth claims anchored in history
  7. 7. Culture ClashWhen Christianity fails to address felt needs arising from within the traditional religious system, circumstances eventually provoke a separatist movement.Reactions tend toward independent church movements with exotic theologies that reflect traditional religious sensibilities
  8. 8. Missiological ImplicationsDoes African traditional religion form the base upon which to build Christian truth?When does contextualization become syncretism?What is the legitimate role of power encounters in contextualized Christianity?

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