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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Spiritual warfare 101: preparing the student for Christian battle
Author:Stambach, AmyISNI
Periodical:Journal of Religion in Africa
Geographic terms:Kenya
United States
Subjects:religious education
culture conflict
External link:https://doi.org/10.1163/157006609X433358
Abstract:To better understand how American missionaries and Kenyan evangelists differently conceptualize spiritual warfare and its weapons, the author focuses on the history and content of nondenominational churches' work at Nairobi Bible College and in western Kenya. The degree-granting programme of the Nairobi Bible College includes a course entitled 'Spiritual warfare: preparing the student for Christian battle'. In this course the subject of anthropology is introduced and used as a 'secular tool' that can itself be used to combat secularism. One of the key concepts developed in the course, and in the broader programme of this US-funded nondenominational church in East Africa, is that understanding culture is key to learning and unlocking the spiritual 'personalities' (both godly and satanic) involved in spiritual warfare. Both Kenyans and Americans conceive of warfare as the struggle between secular and Christian worldviews and consider education to be one of the strongest weapons needed to win the battle. However, where US teachers focus on animism and world-religious conflict as evidence of lingering immorality and ungodliness, Kenyans focus on American ethnocentrism and xenophobia as evidence of ongoing cultural misunderstandings and injustice. The analysis is based on an examination of mission records and on field research conducted in Nairobi and western Kenya. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]