Bantu Prophets in South Africa

By Bengt G.M. Sundkler

A fascinating account of the life and aspirations of the Bantu churches of South Africa and of their leaders.

ISBN: 9780227172339


In this impressive study Dr. Sundkler traces the development of the Bantu Churches in South Africa which seceded from the Missions or split amongst themselves.

The author gives a fascinating account of the life and aspirations of these purely Bantu churches and of their leaders. Dr. Sundkler’s study is concentrated on the contact which took place in these churches between the old heritage of the people and the new message of the Christian Gospel.

In the Foreword Dr. E.H. Brookes pays tribute to the spirit in which the author has written, “not merely an unbiased scientific spirit, but a spirit which shows true kindness, a positive attitude and a sympathetic understanding of Zulu ideas and aspirations.”

Dr. Sundkler’s Bantu Prophets in South Africa is an important and remarkable work on religion in this region.

Additional information

Dimensions 216 × 140 mm
Pages 346

Trade Information JPOD

About the Author

Dr. Bengt Sundkler, having served with the Mission in South Africa, took charge of the German orphaned mission in Tanganyika. He was a lecturer in the University of Uppsala and was the Research Secretary of the International Missionary Council.


Preface by the Hon. The Senator Dr E.H. Brookes
List of Illustrations
Introduction: Approaching the Problem

I. Religious and Social Background of the Zulus
     (1) Zulu Beliefs
     (2) White Missions, History and Policy
     (3) “Net vir Blankes – For Europeans Only”
II. The Rise of the Independent Church Movement
     (1) History of Churches of Ethiopian and Zionist Type
     (2) Genealogical Tables of Representative Churches
     (3) Attempts at Co-operation
     (4) Types and Charters
     (5) Relations of Separatist Churches to Missions
III. Government Policy
     (1) History of Government Policy
     (2) Privileges Following Upon Government Recognition
IV. Church and Community
     (1) Independent Churches in the City (Johannesburg)
     (2) Independent Churches on Farms
     (3) Independent Churches in the Reserve
V. Leader and Followers
     (1) The Leader
     (2) Leader and Nucleus
     (3) Leader, Nucleus and Church
VI. Worship and Healing
     (1) Worship
     (2) Worship in Bethesda
     (3) Healing
VII. New Wine in Old Wineskins
     (1) Blend of Old and New
     (2) Dreams as Means of Revelation
     (3) Revelation Through the Book and the Black Christ
     (4) Green Pastures – Zulu Version

Appendix A: Heathen Diviner and Christian Prophet
Appendix B: List of Native Separatist Churches
Special Bibliography
Index of Names
Index of Subjects