THC6100EN - Issues for an African Theology in Context

Course description

Compares the important personalities, theological works, and issues defining the study of Christian theologies in modern Africa. Cultural/theological impacts of pre-modern, modern, and postmodern issues on contemporary African Christian theologies will be analyzed. The student will understand and engage the shift of Christianity from its Western “homeland” to Africa, and the responsibility, problems and opportunities these shifts pose for biblical Christianity in Africa.

How this course benefits students

First, the student will be familiar with the world, origin and motivations for doing Christian theologies in Africa. This entails helping the student to understand the history of colonial and missionary enterprise on the African continent. Second, the student will also be able to describe the different phases, pertinent issues and common concerns in the development of African Christian theologies. The student will be able to see and understand the effects and roles of pre-modern, modern and postmodern thoughts on the development of African Christian theologies. Third, the course will help the student to engage the problems as well as the opportunities in the quest of doing modern Christian theologies on the African continent. Similarly, the student will also be able to provide biblical responses to the defining flaws of African theological discourses on God, the person of Christ, salvation, the Holy Spirit and the church. Last, the course will help the student to engage the missiological issues at the heart of the contemporary quest for African Christian theologies.

Why this course is important

The African continent has been described in contemporary discourse as the “Next Christendom.” This description comes from the recognition of the increasing population of Christians on the African continent. There is the need to study and understand the factors behind the significant paradigmatic shift in the center of Christianity, and the implications of this important shift for the global church. Similarly, it is important to properly understand and harness this contemporary Christian presence on the continent for the works of mission.

Credit hours
3 hours
Subject area
Contextual Theology
Educational level
Learning type
Upcoming terms
* Schedule subject to change. Please contact the Registrar's office with schedule questions.

How this course relates to missional core values

Biblically based

The course is biblically-oriented by the quest to understand and interpret the various trends and development in African Christian theologies from the perspective of the Bible.

Missionally driven

The study is missiologically-driven by its recognition of the missiological character and origin of the contemporary quest for relevant Christian theologies on the African continent.

Contextually informed

The course recognizes the importance of the African context in its theological reflections, and thereby seeks to understand Christian theology and the Bible using traditional African idioms and forms.

Interculturally focused

The course describes the various problems and opportunities in the intercultural encounter between missionary and their African converts. The core of the course is centered on this important encounter of the three cultures namely the African culture, American-European culture and the culture of the biblical world.

Practically minded

The course provides practical hints in carrying out missionary activities on the African continent.

Experientially transformed

The context of the present discourse of Christian theology in Africa comes as result of the experiential encounter of Jesus by the African people. The course celebrates this experiential encounter of God by the African people.