Mandela and Voortrekker monuments: Idols of my beloved people

Madiba vs Voortrekker Monument 16 Dec 2013

Grant Swart

On 16 December 1949, the majority of Afrikaners and a few others in South Africa inaugurated the Voortrekker Monument on a hill overlooking the city of Pretoria. A group of these South Africans continue to gather there annually, in a large constructed amphitheatre, to hold a secular ceremony in celebration of a day of remembrance, which they call the Day of the Covenant or Day of the Vow. They hold the belief that, years before, on 16 December 1838, a group of Voortrekkers had made an Old Testamental type of covenant with Almighty God. They believe that this covenant had moved God to empower them to defeat a large army of black Zulu warriors at the Battle of Blood River, in what is today, Kwa-Zulu Natal.

To the contrary, man does not have the ability to influence God’s plan for history. The Voortrekkers won the battle against the odds, not as a result of the covenant they thought they had made with God, but according to the eternal will of God. God was not taken by surprise by the events of that day, He was not waiting to see what the Boers or the Zulu Impi would do, He caused the events to happen exactly as they played out, from eternity.

The 40m wide, 40m long and 40m high construction of the Voortrekker monument, which is modeled on and resembles an Egyptian monument, has a cenotaph as central focal point. Continue reading

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Altar Calls: Why you should refuse to “walk the aisle” (Part 3 of 3)

Grant Swart

In Parts 1 and 2 of this article, I considered what should constitute, in part, the Christian approach to the ritual or adopted tradition which is now commonly referred to as the altar call. In this, the third posting in the little series, I consider the opinion of one of the foremost and effective biblical evangelists.

In “The Way of the Master”, Ray Comfort gives tongue in cheek advice to those preachers who, by means of their own conjured traditions and motions, wish to impress gullible sinners and make of them commercial converts. Rather than preaching the simple truth of the Gospel to the congregants, they preach variations of “easy-believism”. Thereby unscrupulous preachers proffer to do what they are unable to do and that is to attempt to “make” true believers at altar calls. Continue reading