Today I had the sad job of collecting the body of a mother of 5 who was only in her 30’s, who was the sister-in-law of our friend and local pastor Mr Mapema. She had been diagnosed with cancer two years ago.
Due to some cultural customs, she was taken to live with her mother, while her husband and children remained in the town of Likoni near Mombasa, and he and the other family sent money when available to help with treatment. However, her mother (who says she is a Christian) believed her son in law had bewitched her. Instead of taking her for the treatment she paid the witch doctor to come and remove the ‘curse’.
This is the second death within one month of a middle-aged person that I know of, and there must be thousands more over Africa.
To the western mind, this is all very strange, but it is deadly serious, Satan and his demons are at work here in a very open way, corrupting the minds of these poor people through witchcraft. In the Western world his work is generally more subtle, albeit with the same devastating effect, but because it is so subtle we can very easily forget he is at work seeking to destroy the Church of Jesus Christ. It is him who has blinded the minds of the unbelievers (2 Cor 4.4) as he seeks his own preeminence and companions for hell.
On Sunday I preached from Saul going to the witch of Endor and the outcome of dealing with the forces of darkness, in a hope the Lord would use it as a warning to some poor soul.
The reason why I have felt constrained to email is that it is heartbreaking to see the manifest grief and suffering sin has caused in this world and here we seem to be on the front line of it. Death seems final, but really it is just the beginning of a never-ending eternity.
Please remember us and the Christians here who have come out of a culture steeped in witchcraft and superstition, who in many cases live in fear because they do not know the Word of God and the victory Christ has accomplished on the cross over the powers of darkness for all of His people.