|The ' Vic Falls' seen from the Zambian side|
This annual conference of God centered Evangelicals in Southern Africa was held at the Livingstone Institute of Business and Engineering Studies . It was well organized in terms of everything. Zambian hospitality , as always was excellent . This conference was held under the auspices of the Trinity Reformed Baptist Church in Livingstone .
|Hein Strauss & Christo Beetge chairing a session|
After the steering committee under the leadership of Christo Beetge ( Brackenhurst Baptist Church) and our ever efficient administrator , Hein Strauss ( Antipas Baptist Church – Pretoria) had met on Thursday afternoon , 1st September to ensure that everything was in place to commence with the conference , the conference began with an evening fellowship supper followed by the first address .
The theme for this year’s conference was , “ Living God’s Way in God’s World : Christians impacting culture” .
Six topics were assigned for the conference , all centering around the cultural mandate given to us in Genesis 1:28 . I shall make mention of the topics and the speakers only. (The messages may be downloaded, I believe, from the SOLA 5 Website in MP3 or DVD format )
1 . Bruce Button ( Sovereign Grace Theological Seminary) : The biblical basis for the cultural mandate
2. Jeff Gage (Free Grace Baptist Church – Boksburg) : The theological basis for the cultural mandate
3. Joachim Rieck ( Eastside Baptist Church ) : The historical outworking of the cultural mandate in western civilization
4. Conrad Mbewe ( Kabwata Baptist Church) : The place of Christian education in the fulfillment of the cultural mandate
5. Ronald Kalifungwa( Lusaka Baptist Church) : The place of a biblical work ethic in the fulfillment of the cultural mandate
6. Choolwe Mwetwa : ( Chingola Baptist Church) : The application of the cultural mandate in Africa . This message was preached in the context of a worship service held at Trinity Reformed Baptist Church .
|Three of our speakers (l-r) Conrad Mbewe , Ronald Kalifungwa , Choolwe Mwetwa|
The messages were all thought provoking and challenging. The subject at hand is one that needs to be mulled over and discussed in our churches . The nature of this conference was intensely practical since it dealt with the application of the gospel which frees us to do good works ( Eph 2:10) in every sphere of our existence .
The preaching sessions were interspersed with mission reports and reports on new church planting initiatives ( e.g. Richard Raven in Bloemfontein) from all the regions . It is wonderful to see how missionary minded our movement is !
On Saturday afternoon there was an elective on youth ministry offered by Nick and Sheila Court of Stepwise Youth ministry .
On Friday afternoon , 2nd September we held our Annual Business Session . Since SOLA 5 is not a denomination , but an association of churches , this session was uncomplicated and quickly accomplished . A new steering committee was elected. Peter Sammons ( Germiston Baptist Church/ RSA) was elected as the chairman . The Steering Committee consist of Hein Strauss ( Administrator) , Ronald Kalifungwa (alt. Isaac Makashinyi) Conrad Mbewe ( alt. Grave Singogo) , Christo Beetge , Pieter Slabber ( Eastside / Namibia) , Jeff Gage , Roland Eskinazi; OB Macwele ( Swaziland) , Kobus van der Walt .
New churches were received into membership : Kafue Reformed Baptist Church (Zambia ); Midrand Chapel (RSA) and Birchleigh Baptist Church ( RSA) .
|Pastor Kennedy Sunkutu and wife from Kafue Reformed Baptist Church|
An encouraging report was given by Dr Ken Turnbull on the development of the African Christian University in Zambia and Bruce Button of the Sovereign Grace Theological Seminary ( Zambia ) . SGTS will hopefully become the theological faculty of this new Christian University.
On Saturday afternoon, 3rd of September we had a bit of free time and visited the majestic Victoria falls . The ever efficient Col. Phiri had organized a Zambian Airforce bus for us and had negotiated a reduced entrance fare for us. Instead of paying U$ 20.00 we only had to pay U$ 10.00 .
This is now the 7th SOLA 5 Conference , since this Association of God Centered Evangelicals in Southern Africa was formed in 2004 .
Next year’s conference ( 2012) will be hosted by the Manzini Fellowship Church in Swaziland , before the conference hopes to return once more to Namibia in 2013 .